Conventional Generator Vs. Inverter – Which Is Better?

  • By: Umer.A
  • Date: October 10, 2021
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There are several reasons, such as fuel efficiency, noise, and power production, while choosing inverters and conventional generators. Inverter generators are highly fuel-efficient but produce limited power. Whereas conventional generators can run a full house or RV for more than 24 hours continuously.

Generators prove to be a great source of alternative power for different scenarios. You could be suffering from a power outage during a storm or need a power source at a camping site. In either case, a generator can prove to be extremely useful to power necessary equipment.

When to Choose an Inverter Generator?

There are several scenarios where you should choose an inverter over a conventional generator. If you’re traveling, you should take an inverter along, as it is easier to transport.

Another reason to choose an inverter is the need for a steady stream of electricity. It includes sensitive devices such as laptops, mobile chargers, or DSLRs.

Main Difference Between Inverter and Regular Generator

The most significant difference between conventional generators and an inverter is the type of electricity produced. A standard generator only produces AC electricity, whereas an inverter produces electricity in three different phases. First, it produces high-frequency AC, converted by an alternator into DC and further into stable AC.

Another difference is that standard generators come with larger fuel tanks. It needs a significant amount of fuel to produce electricity. An inverter, on the other hand, can manage with a smaller fuel tank.

The size of the fuel tank also affects the portability of the two generators. A standard generator is portable but usually heavier. It comes with handles and wheels that can help you move it around.

On the other hand, an inverter is much lighter and therefore is commonly considered a portable generator.

Functional Difference Between an Inverter and A conventional Generator

Yes. An inverter produces more stable electricity. This is partly due to the size of the fuel tank and the difference in electricity production. Inverter generators have an average power of 1200 to 4000 watts. In contrast, a standard generator can reach over 10,000 watts.

However, to compensate for this lower power output, manufacturers have installed a parallel connection in inverters. So, you can connect two separate inverters (of the same model) to produce twice as much power. Conventional generators, on the other hand, do not offer the option for a parallel connection.

Additionally, an inverter also produces fewer greenhouse emissions than a conventional generator. It is far easier to find an inverter compliant with environmental requirements than to find a conventional generator.

conventional Generator

Difference Between the Fuel Efficiency and Run Time of Inverter and Standard Generator

An inverter is more fuel-efficient because of the way it produces stable AC electricity. The engine of an inverter automatically adjusts the power according to the load. Basically, despite having smaller fuel tanks, they can offer a similar run time as standard generators.

Noise Level Difference Between Inverter and Generator

Conventional generators produce a lot more noise because of their mechanism. Even with noise minimizing efforts, a conventional generator will remain extremely noisy.

On the other hand, an inverter is much quieter because of its technology. It can run at a steady 3600 rpm which is why it does not produce much noise. At the same time, a conventional generator cannot maintain 3600 rpm and cause the Hertz and voltage to fluctuate as well. It is this consistent fluctuation that produces the sound.

What Are the Advantages of An Inverter Generator?

  • Fuel efficient:

An inverter can throttle its engine up and down to adjust the flow of electricity. This means it does not waste a large amount of fuel to produce electricity. You can manage long run times on an inverter with a much smaller fuel tank. You do not have to spend much time replacing the fuel tank as you would for a conventional generator.

  • Portability:

The design and construction of an inverter make it a lot easier to transport from one location to another. Additionally, it comes with a much smaller fuel tank and engine.  Overall, inverters are lighter and, thus, extremely portable than conventional generators.

  • Parallel connection:

An inverter gives you the option to connect two inverters (of the same model) to produce twice as much power. This is not a feature you will find in conventional generators.

  • Noise:

An inverter produces much less noise as compared to the conventional generator.

  • Emissions:

If you’re traveling through a national park, you will have to abide by the rules regarding greenhouse emissions. An inverter produces fewer greenhouse emissions and would be the better choice for travel.

Do I Need an Inverter Generator for My House?

If you live in an area where natural disasters are frequent, then you should consider an inverter. It would be a great convenience during a power outage in a snowstorm or a flood.

You might need an inverter for your house if you host a lot of outdoor activities. You don’t have to keep running between the kitchen and backyard. An inverter will allow you to use electrical appliances outdoors.

Which Brand of Portable Generators Is the Quietest?

Manufacturers provide you with the noise level of the generator as well as the other specifications. This way, you can check and make sure to get a generator that suits your needs. Several brands produce credible portable generators that offer a reasonable and quiet run time. For example, Honda EU2200iTAG is an ultra-quiet portable generator.

Another excellent option is the Westinghouse iGen2200 portable inverter. This generator runs at 2,200 watts, is powered by gas, and is one of the quietest generators you can find.

Lastly, we have the A-iPower SUA2000iV that runs at 2,000 watts with a noise level of just 58 decibels. These are just some of the options available for some of the quietest generators.

Why Are Inverter Generators the Best?

If you want a generator for your home, you will need to consider your neighbors and surroundings. And in this case, a quiet generator that produces little emissions will be the best pick. Additionally, for a stable current to power devices such as laptops, phone chargers, and appliances, you need an inverter. It is indeed the better option not only because of the power production but also for the fuel consumption. If you don’t want to refill the fuel tank on your generator regularly, you need an inverter.


A conventional generator and an inverter are both good for different occasions. You need to consider your needs that what kind of a power resource you want. If, however, you want something convenient, quiet, and powerful, then, of course, you should opt for an inverter. An inverter offers a stable current as well as greater portability.