How Exactly Does A Diesel Generator Work?


  • Author Harvey Mcewan
  • Published February 5, 2013
  • Word count 484

Millions of people throughout the world, including home owners and businesses, not forgetting hospitals etc.. all benefit from using generators. Which involves a combination of either standby or portable generators.

But how many people can honestly admit to knowing how they work. Many understand that they are complex and dangerous, when not used with caution. But understanding why and knowing the exact dangers can make using these a much less dangerous task. Much similar to car engines, previous generations had to learn how to maintain and repair their own vehicles. Whereas today, almost nobody gets their hands dirty.

It's a similar thing with generators. We almost all use them in some way or another but do not know how they work. Only that fuel goes in and electricity is produced.

To begin lets understand the beginning of the process by dividing up the internal components into two different sections. The first is the engine, and second the electromagnetic generator. Both are connected by a crankshaft.

The engine is what is commonly known as a combustion engine. Which in turn burns the fuel that is added. The most common generators run on diesel, but can run on different kinds of biofuel without any kind of modifications. Once switched on a generator uses a throttle to mange and stabilise the power output. Allowing the operation to be controlled and not over or underpowered. As this can also result in inefficiency.

It must be noted that a standby generator will require professional installation. Placed a specific distance from your home and from other buildings and materials, whilst correctly installing into the mains. There are other requirements that stop many home owners from installing this type of generator. This can range from the noise of the generator to the nearest home, ventilation, fuel storage and cooling factors.

So what exactly is occurring inside of the generator once it has been filled with a fuel and switched on?. To begin, as the crankshaft turns, the central axle of the generator is spun inside a chamber that contains electromagnets. The high-speed motion causes an electric current to be created. The electricity is then passed directly into the appliances that are plugged into the generator.

It's important to understand that a generator is chosen on the basis of the electrical load they are intended to supply.

Moving on, lets focus on understanding how to measure the correct size of generator by analysing the intended use, therefore adding up the required wattage. The first step is to identify, each and every appliance that is intended to be powered, the start wattage and also the running wattage. The start wattage can often be as much as three times the normal running wattage, hence the importance to calculate these numbers carefully. It is always recommended to seek professional help, if you are intending on purchasing or choosing to go down that generator rental route.

Harvey McEwan provides information and advice on a variety of areas to help everyone understand not only how generators work, but also providing information on generator rental. View Harvey's other articles to find out more.

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