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How Do Backup House And Business Generators Work?

How Do Backup House And Business Generators Work?

Backup power generators serve as a critical lifeline for both homes and businesses, ensuring continuity and comfort during power outages. These generators come in various forms and sizes, catering to different needs, preferences, and energy requirements.

Understanding how backup generators work and the nuances between manual changeover switches and Automatic Transfer Switches (ATS), as well as the advantages and disadvantages of portable petrol generators versus standby diesel generators, can help in making informed decisions.


How Backup Generators Work

Backup generators are standalone machines that provide electrical power in the absence of a primary power source. When the main electricity supply fails, these generators kick in to power essential appliances and systems.


Manual Changeover Switches vs. Automatic Transfer Switches (ATS)

Manual Changeover Switches

Manual Changeover Switches require a person to manually switch from the main power supply to the generator. This might be inconvenient during unexpected power outages, especially if they occur during the night or when the building is unattended.

  • Less expensive than ATS.
  • Gives control over when to switch to generator power.
  • Not suitable for critical systems that require an immediate response to power outages.
  • Requires physical presence to operate.

Automatic Transfer Switches

Automatic Transfer Switches (ATS) automatically detect power loss and switch to generator power without human intervention. Once the main power is restored, ATS switches back and turns off the generator.

  • Immediate response to power outages.
  • No need for human intervention, making it ideal for critical systems and unsupervised locations.
  • More expensive than manual switches.
  • Complexity in installation and maintenance.

Portable Petrol Generators vs. Standby Diesel Generators

Portable Petrol Generators

Portable Petrol Generators are small, easily movable units ideal for temporary power needs, outdoor activities, and small businesses or homes.

  • Less expensive and more portable
  • Suitable for light-duty applications
  • Limited power output, not ideal for long-term use or larger homes/businesses.
  • Higher running costs and less fuel-efficient than diesel.

View the large range of portable generators at Riequip, inverter generators, industrial generators, emergency backup generators and generators suitable for residential and commercial applications.

Standby Diesel Generators

Standby Diesel Generators are permanently installed and automatically start during a power outage, providing a reliable power source for homes and businesses.

  • More reliable and efficient for long-term use
  • Greater power output, suitable for larger homes and businesses
  • More expensive upfront and requires professional installation
  • Larger and less portable, requiring a dedicated space

Riequip are experts in standby diesel generators, view our range of Genmac diesel standby generators. Genmac ATS units are also stocked and can be supplied with Genmac generators for fast and simple installation by your electrician.


Closing Thoughts

Choosing between these options depends on specific needs, such as the size of the property, criticality of power needs, budget, and preference for convenience versus cost. Portable petrol generators offer a quick and easy solution for temporary or small-scale power needs, while standby diesel generators provide a more robust and reliable power supply for larger homes and businesses.

Similarly, the choice between manual changeover switches and ATS depends on the need for convenience and immediate response versus cost considerations. Understanding these differences and weighing the pros and cons can guide you to the best backup power solution for your home or business.

Riequip can provide you with the best backup generator for homes or the best backup generator for businesses complete with pre-shipping testing and warranty. If you're looking for a generator, Riequip's got you covered!
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