Industrial vs. Commercial Generators: What’s the Difference?

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Many companies fail to choose the right generator because they don’t understand the difference between industrial and commercial generators. Here we explain the differences between the two to help you make the right decision.

What is an Industrial Generator?

An industrial generator is designed to withstand the demands of industrial work. They are more rugged and can hold their own in more rigorous industrial settings such as oil well sites, construction sites or chemical plants. However, high demand can also be required in other settings such as the entertainment industry. Industrial generators should:

  • Produce 150kw to 2 megawatts of power
  • Be built sturdier compared to commercial or residential generators
  • Be movable by cranes and/or forklifts
  • Be customizable to suit the application
  • Have NEMA rating suited enclosures to adapt to noise level restrictions

The two most common types of industrial-size generators are:

  • Diesel Industrial Generators: Diesel generators can meet the required power requirements of industrial work, reaching up to 2 megawatts. They are often chosen when the worksite does not yet have power or natural gas connections, or for remote locations such as a pipeline. Diesel itself is also easy to find. Where diesel is not as effective, however, is in remote areas where diesel is not available to refuel. Although it can be stored, it can also go stagnant in certain conditions.
  • Natural Gas Industrial Generators: Natural gas generators require wellhead natural gas to operate. They also offer less power reaching only 1000 kw. However, if you do have access to natural gas, and don’t require more power, they can do the job nicely, while also saving money.

Your power demands and location tend to be the deciding factor when choosing industrial backup generators. Your industrial generator services expert can advise what will work best for your application.

To learn more about industrial and commercial generators, contact our experts at VCM Solutions today.

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What is a Commercial Generator?

A commercial generator is designed to provide backup in the event of power outages or blackouts. They are more comparable to a residential generator in the power they provide. A commercial generator tends to:

  • Be larger than residential generators, offering higher power output to handle the demands of commercial use such as several computers and office equipment
  • Be of sturdier construction than residential generators, using larger engines as well as stronger metals
  • Have superior cooling components allowing them to run safely when under higher demand so they can produce more power wattage

The two most common types of commercial generators are:

  • Gasoline: This is a good choice for generators that produce less than 150kw of power. Gasoline is easy to find for refueling however, it tends to present more safety and affordability issues than other fuel types. It is also not as well suited in areas with low temperatures.
  • Natural Gas: This is used by those with access to a natural gas utility grid. If you do have access, this is the perfect choice as you won’t worry about refueling. This is also the best choice if you are in an area with frigid temperatures. However, it does offer less output than other sources and can’t be used following natural disasters or when the grid is compromised.

If you require a generator for your business, the industrial generator is the best choice for remote, high power demand uses. The commercial generator is best for small businesses and offices.

Learning the differences between industrial and commercial generators is important. At VCM Solutions, we will discuss these differences and help you pick the best generator for your needs. Contact us today.