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How Do Inverter Generators Work

ElectricalWaveformsInverter generators are a fairly new concept but are becoming more and more popular. The engines often vary their speed to match the load needed, unlike traditional generators that run at a constant speed. Because of this ability to adjust to produce only what is needed they are more fuel efficient and most of the time make less noise than other generators.  This makes inverter generators economical to operate and environmentally friendly.

They are also given a higher recommendation for powering electronics. Inverter generators work by generating 3-phase AC power at a high frequency.  It is then converted to direct current, then back to alternating current that can be used by electronic equipment and appliances.  This output from the inverter generator is often called "clean power" which means stable and consistent current and a stable sine wave delivery.  This will not cause a fluctuation in voltage which happens with traditional generators.  Sudden fluctuations of power is very dangerous to many high-tech and sensitive electronics such as computers.  Most Inverter Generators can be paired with another identically sized unit to double your power capacity.

Except that an inverter generator will use Neodymium magnets instead of brushes and the inversion from direct current to alternating current can be done, they function very similar to ordinary generators.  Different models use different kinds of mechanical energy and convert it to electrical energy. There are three different types of inverters available. Square wave inverters, modified square wave, and sine wave. The type of inverter generator you may want to purchase depends on what you plan on powering with it.

Square wave inverter generators
Square wave inverters are not found as often as they used to be. They are good for powering universal motors, such as can be found in power tools. Square wave generator are the cheapest but hardest to find.

Modified sine wave inverter generators
A modified sine wave inverter creates power with a waveform more similar to the square wave inverter than to the sine wave inverter. Fans, refrigerators, and pump motors will operate less efficiently with this inverter than the sine wave inverter. Appliances with timers or digital clocks will keep accurate time, but usually will run faster. Appliances with temperature control also may not operate correctly, and tools such as multi-speed power drills will only work in one speed with this type generator. Other types of equipment should function normally with a modified sine wave generator.

Sine wave inverter generators
A sine wave inverter generator will deliver the same wave as what is delivered from a normal generator or the power company. They use AC machinery to which naturally creates sine wave energy. The best thing about a these generators is that nearly all equipment on the market today is designed to operate on a sine wave. A sine wave generator may cost more than other generators but the quality of electricity and range of applicable is uses are much more desirable.