What is a power generator?


A power generator is an appliance that generates electricity by converting an energy source like diesel or petrol into power for use. Generators are used as a means to generate electricity when grid access is difficult to access and to prevent discontinuity of electricity supply. 

Power generation is often an essential part of earthmoving, construction or mining projects, particularly if there is limited access to mains. As a result, generators are prominent across early-stage construction sites where electricity infrastructure hasn’t been installed yet or on sites where electricity supply is unreliable. Generators are also commonly used in a range of buildings like hospitals and shopping centres where they act as a backup electricity source in case of blackouts.  

Our search directory offers a huge volume of power generators for hire by qualified suppliers throughout Australia. We can connect you with the best generator hire suppliers in all major cities including Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Canberra, Hobart, and Darwin, along with hundreds of regional centres throughout Australia. These suppliers offer a diverse range of power generators to suit your project and operations needs.

Which power generator do you need? 

Generators come in an assortment of electrical and physical configurations for use in a variety of applications, where they vary in usage (standby or continuous/prime), kVA and hire. It’s critical to have an estimate of the amount of power required, what tools, machines, or systems need the power. Knowing your power needs will help you ensure you get the best power generator hire option with enough output electricity to maintain power on your site. If it has too little output, then your site needs will not be met and this may be a costly process that delays productivity. 

How does a generator work?

A generator utilises energy sources like gas, diesel, or petrol to generate a mechanical force that is then converted into an electric current. On the technical side of things, generators operate on the principle of electromagnetic induction. The principle is that generators move a magnet close to a wire, creating a steady flow of electrons. A tight copper coil is usually wrapped around the iron core in the generator, which rotates extremely quickly inside a powerful magnet.

Diesel engine generators burn petroleum/fuel, which provides the motion for the generator by use of electromagnets to convert motion into electricity. Once the engine has started and the crankshaft is turned, the central axle containing electromagnets spins rapidly inside the generators chamber, producing an electric current. 

What are the different kinds of power generators?

For example, standby power generators are generators used for emergency backup power, and are typically only run when there is a grid outage or when grid access is offline for repair or infrastructure work. Continuous generators are designed to operate continuously for extended periods of time. Consequently, continuous generates create enormous amounts of heat. These generators need cooling systems to handle the constant heat generation. This commonly causes continuous generators to be more expensive than generators of similar capabilities. Portable generators are a third option for projects and sites, and as the name implies, allow for portable access to electric output.

Most portable units are air-cooled and so ought to be operated in the open for maximum air ventilation and fume diffusion. Portable generators are handy accessories on residential sites, and are often used to provide energy for lighting, sump pumps, essential appliances and machinery and vital medical equipment. They are found on construction sites, farms, motor homes, and recreation vehicles, and even during camping trips. However, portable generators are not capable of addressing high power requirements and long term projects and sites.

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What are the different types of generator?

The difference between a diesel and petrol generator is how the different machines transform fuel to create mechanical energy for site use. In mechanical terms, diesel engines rely solely on heavily compressed air while petrol engines use spark plugs to ignite the air-fuel mixture. 

What is a diesel generator?

Diesel generators function using a compression mechanism that powers the engine through the use of pistons, cylinders and crankshafts. These internal systems are more complex than petrol generators and are the most fuel efficient electricity units available as they provide higher motor compression. As a result, diesel generators generally cost less to run and require less maintenance because they don’t have to work as hard as petrol engines to reach the same power output level. Diesel generators are the backbone that powers the mining and construction industries in Australia. 

What is a petrol generator? 

Petrol generators are fuelled by petrol and are arguably a better option than diesel generators if you are looking for infrequent or temporary use. Petrol generators are commonly less expensive to hire and available in more models, operate quieter and produce less harmful carbon dioxide fumes than diesel generators. While diesel generators are more fuel efficient, petrol also costs less than diesel, so you are not likely to notice big savings going diesel unless operating at a large scale. 

How much is it to hire a generator?

Generator Power rates hire vary depending on location, generator fuel system, generator type and electrical output capacity. iSeekplant have put together this easy to read pricing guide to give you an estimation of power generator hire rates. Note, the prices below are generalised costs based on hiring a diesel generator per hour.
  • Less than 50KVA $29.00 per hour
  • 101KVA-150KVA $45.00 per hour
  • 151KVA - 200KVA $55.00 per hour
  • 201KVA - 500KVA $95 - $150 per hour
  • 501KVA - 1000KVA $220 per hour
Our directory offers a variety of generator hire services from suppliers throughout major including Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Canberra, Hobart, and Darwin, along with hundreds of regional centres throughout Australia. If you’re looking for expert advice about the best generator hire for your next project, get in touch with iSeekplant or check out supplier listings on our website. You can browse many different generator suppliers and find the best rental rates on generators available. Click here now to hire a generator in your project's location. Or call us today on 1300 691 912, we've got a dedicated team on hand to help you source plant and equipment in any location across Australia.

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