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Generators and Inverters: Two Different Ways to Obtain Backup Power

Both generators and inverters are tools for backup power after an emergency outage. And both generators and inverters can be used in a variety of capacities: for residential, commercial, and even mobile power. Their differences lie in how they generate power and their fuel sources.

Cooper Electrical Services is a residential and commercial generator sales, installation, and maintenance company. Our coastal location in Myrtle Beach leads to longer lasting outages, which tend to be better suited to standby generators with a direct fuel source like natural gas or liquid propane. However, there may be some instances, especially when portable or mobile power is needed, when an inverter is the best solution.

Main Differences Between Generators and Inverters

Generators provide immediate backup power after an outage by converting a fuel source (natural gas, propane, diesel) to an alternating current (AC). Both residential and commercial generators tie directly to a fuel source and equipped with computers that detect any utility power disruption. When power goes out, a transfer switch automatically and immediately engages generated power.

Standby generators are connected to your home or business’s incoming supply box, and immediately take over to supply your whole home or business with power. This means that your home or workplace will receive power to all appliances, outlets, and lighting, as well as HVAC, water pump, and other building systems.

Inverters also generate AC, but they use a battery instead of a gas or propane fuel source. Inverters’ batteries take AC and convert it to DC (direct current) and then invert it back to a clean AC.

Modern inverters are popular in converting power from renewable sources like solar or wind energy. Inverters are a cleaner (but more expensive) source for backup power, but they are not intended for long-term emergency power. Nor are they intended to power an entire home or business. An inverter’s batteries need to be charged and replaced frequently. This makes it difficult or impossible to sustain backup power after a natural disaster like a major hurricane or flood.

Generators: The Best Bet for Long-Term Emergency Power

In conclusion, residential standby and commercial generators are the best option for affordable, reliable, and long-term backup power.

Modern generators like Cummins’ Quiet Connect series for homes and small businesses are perfect for Myrtle Beach’s hurricane season. Cummins also offers a full line of commercial power solutions for large businesses like schools, hospitals, or data centers.

To learn more about generated power options from Cooper Electrical Services, call Cooper today.