Many companies need to use industrial generators for a variety of different reasons. Often the primary reason is for purposes of long-range transfer of energy or to serve as a backup energy source for a facility when the main electric grid goes down. In other situations, there may not be sufficient electrical grid infrastructure for servicing an area to meet the electrical demands of a business. Companies that need to use generators to keep the electricity flowing will want to purchase the right cost-effective generator that helps them save money anywhere they can without sacrificing efficiency. The following are a few considerations that will help a business make a comparative assessment of the short- and long-term savings of a generator purchase.
Going Off Grid
It is important to understand that using a generator to provide electrical power is more expensive than obtaining electricity from the local energy grid. This will remain true no matter what fuel source is being used to power a generator. With this in mind, it will be important to assess the extent of the electrical requirements a generator will need to satisfy in order to determine budgetary guidelines for purchasing the right generator for the industrial application in question. In this assessment, contrasting various relevant fuel costs, such as diesel versus propane versus natural gas, for example, must be taken into consideration—especially if a company is trying to become electrically independent.
Emergency or Continuous Use
In general, generators are either used as short-term emergency backup sources for electrical power (a standby generator), or they are used for more continuous operation (a prime generator). A hospital, for example, may only need a standby generator in the case of an emergency: due to a power failure from the main electrical grid. Other businesses may require greater continuity of use from the generator they purchase to meet their year-round electrical needs. Heavy-duty generators tend to be designed more for this situation, and hence will tend to be more expensive when calculating fuel and maintenance costs to operate over the long term.
The Two Major Types of Generators to Choose From
In general, there are two primary types of industrial generators. There are alternators and dynamos. Alternators provide alternating current and dynamos produce direct current. As a rule, AC generators produce electricity easier and tend to be more efficient; thus, AC generators will usually be cheaper to operate and will generally have fewer moving parts.
Working with Steam
If the industrial application being carried out can benefit from utilizing steam to generate electricity, then a steam generator can be a space and cost-efficient generator to use. In fact, it is relatively easy to find a steam generator for sale. Since the process involves boiling water and methods of heat transfer, sometimes from other processes, this reduces the need to waste a lot of fuel to run the generator and eliminates the associated cost involved in both short- and long-term assessments.
A generator will often be an expensive investment for a company. This is why it is important to analyze the various costs associated with purchasing a generator to ensure the choice being made is right for the intended industrial application in mind. From the fluctuating costs of fuel to the varying costs of maintenance, as they are projected over the life of the machine, all such relevant factors should play a role in helping to determine which generator is the best fit for the needs of an industrial business.