Best Dual Fuel Inverter Generator Buying Guide

The best dual fuel inverter generators use a new and very efficient technology that makes them more fuel-efficient. As a result, they are the ideal generators for saving money in the long run. Unlike conventional generators, inverter generators are much quieter and are less annoying to keep or be around. Put in another way; inverter generators are like the holy grail of the generator world.

Whatever your reason for wanting a generator, you need to make crucial considerations before you buy it. Right, just about any generator can work for household use; however, the best dual fuel inverter generator offers unparalleled performance that can only be beaten by another dual fuel inverter generator.

Hence, instead of buying a single-fuel generator, you can buy a double-fuel generator since it does the job of a single generator and more.

Generators are all designed to work in similar manners with a few differences. Among the differences, the most basic variation is the fuel the unit runs on. Most units are powered by either solar energy, propane, natural gas, diesel, or gasoline. Not just this, but some generators run on a single fuel type while some let you switch between two or more fuel types.

As the name implies, a dual fuel generator uses different fuel types like propane and gasoline to increase the run time. The machine’s design usually features an automatic setting that switches between the fuel types based on availability. This advantage is handy for homeowners and efficient for people who are always on the move.

Besides, it makes an excellent choice for people who live in remote areas and contractors working in remote sites.

With a dual fuel inverter generator, you can use any of the two supported fuel types you want, depending on the circumstance and your preference. Hence, you can always adjust your needs to reflect your current circumstances.

For example, if you suddenly find out that there is no more gasoline in your area, you can power your generator via propane until the gas is available. The advantage is that, while your neighbors are stranded, you won’t be stuck in the same ugly situation.

This feature comes in handy during blackouts as it ensures an uninterrupted power supply to sensitive appliances. Instead of stopping operations when the fuel is out, you can switch power to the reserve fuel source.

Dual fuel generators are reliable and dependent. Hence, if you are looking for a blend of versatility and convenience in one machine, you can depend on the convenient power supply source.

Apart from this, they are effective, and it is considerably easy to switch from one fuel source to another. Most of the generators are designed to run for more than 24 hours without stop. Plus, they are relatively easy to put together and requires no periodic maintenance.

Before buying the best dual fuel generators, let us help you with some helpful tips on considering and how to purchase the generators.

Best Dual Fuel Inverter Generator Buying Guide 2

Before You Buy a Dual Fuel Generator:

The Size

Before buying a dual fuel generator, you need to consider and decide the size you want. Generators come in different sizes, each designed to provide custom energy without being excessive.

Besides the power output, the size affects the running time, maintenance requirements, and price. Generator sizes are measured in inches and often include the height, width, and length of the model. Most generators weigh between 100-250 pounds and 22-30 inches.

The size directly affects the weight; hence, you should consider the weight, especially if you plan to frequently move the generator. If the machine is too big, you may have difficulty fitting it into your trunk or even maneuvering the unit.

However, if the size is too small, it can cost you the power output. Hence, consider your power and mobility needs before buying the generator.

Wheel Kit and Portable Design

If you prefer a portable generator, you should look for features that aid in moving from one place to another. Note, portable does not always mean small; instead, it means you can conveniently move the generator from one place to another without much difficulty.

Since dual generators can be difficult to carry, manufacturers make up for this by providing wheel kits to facilitate moving to different locations.

However, some products don’t come with these kits. Instead, they are sold separately. By implication, you can buy them and add them to your existing unit. Therefore, you need to decide whether you want a generator with a portable transport option or want to buy the kit separately.

Tips: Check out our Portable Inverter Generator review and buying guide

Best Portable Inverter Generator review and buying guide

The Cost 

It would be best if you were very careful when shopping for a dual-fuel inverter generator as you must try to strike a price-quality ratio. Most people concerned about the unit’s price either end up with a cheap or an expensive generator that is not worth their time. The deal is this; overly-cheap generators are not worth much, and the same can be said for the ones that are too expensive.

True, the more expensive the machine is, the functional features you’ll get; however, you don’t need to break the bank before you can buy one. There is always a functional generator at every price level. All you need to do is create a budget of how much you are comfortable with parting with and finding a generator at that price level. The big idea is not to look too low or too high along the price chain before buying a generator.

Maintenance 

Certain dual-fuel generators are easier to maintain than others. For example, generators that use gasoline as a fuel source require more maintenance than diesel. In most cases, larger units are more difficult to maintain than their portable counterparts since they include more components. Although it should not always affect the size, you need to consider it nonetheless.

It would be best if you also chose a generator that offers the appropriate running time you desire. This can be a function of the tank size, physical size, or fuel type.

What to Consider When Buying dual fuel inverter generator

Power Ratio 

The power ratio or output of generators is measured in Watts and is usually indicated as peak and running power output. The peak power is the maximum watts the generator can provide during operations, and the running watts is the average power it can produce during operations. Dual-fuel generators produce between 1000-12000 watts depending on the size of the generator.

Depending on the manufacturer, the watts may vary between the two fuel sources. For example, gasoline may provide more wattage than propane. We recommend you make a comprehensive list of all your tools, appliances, and electrical device you want to power. List their wattage and add them all together to give you an idea of the minimum watt requirement the generator must be able to power.

Control Panel 

The control panel lets you conveniently monitor fuel level, runtime, wattage, and other generator’s status. In most cases, the control panels feature indicator lights and LED displays; however, the quality is usually in the control panel’s intuitive design.

Not just this, but also in the number of information it displays. The control panel should be integrated into different protection systems like the low oil shutdown to protect the generator. Other protection systems include overheating protection, circuit breaker, overload protection, manual shutdown, and voltmeter. Proper integration notifies you of any emergencies so you can take action immediately.

Starting Mechanism 

The standard way to start a dual-fuel generator is either through an electric start switch or a recoil cord. The electric start device is easy to use and convenient. By storing extra electricity in an internal battery, the generator automatically starts when you flip a switch or a button on the keypad. This ignition method is the most convenient as it only requires the electricity stored by the generator. However, it cannot work when the internal battery is not charged.

On the other hand, a recoil cord requires you to steadily and quickly pull the recoil cord to start the engine. Although old, this technology is reliable but takes some effort. It may also require a few pulls to get the generator started. The advantage is that you can start the generator at any time, regardless of how long it has been sitting unused.

Neighborhood-friendly Design 

The operational noise level refers to the acceptable noise level that won’t disturb your neighbors. Any operating tool will produce sound; however, the unit can still power your devices without making too much noise. Since the noise level is measured in decibels, you need to shop for inverter generators with the lowest noise levels.

Inverter generators don’t make much noise than conventional generators; however, a dual-fuel inverter generator combines the function of two into one. The noise level often depends on the generator size, the fuel used, and the power output. We recommend you shop for quiet inverter generators.

Receptacles 

Check the type and number of receptacles in the generator before buying. Most models come with standard 120V outlets, enough to power most household appliances. However, you may require the automotive 12V DC terminals or 240V outlets. We recommend you check each unit’s specification and details and compare them to different models before buying.

Fuel Capacity 

You also need to consider the fuel capacity of the generator as it directly affects the running time. The capacity ranges from 2-10 gallons depending on how large the tank is. Generally, a larger gasoline fuel tank provides more power and runtime.

However, it is not always the vase with propane since the gas is stored under pressure in canisters and attached to the generator via a hose. If gasoline is one of the fuel sources, we recommend checking to make sure the tank capacity will be enough for your needs.

Lift hook bar 

The lift hook bar is a handy part if you intend to use your inverter generator on job sites. The bar lets you attach the generator to a pulley and hook the system to lower or raise the machine. Instead of carrying it up and down ladders and stairs, you can attach a pulley system to the bar and conveniently lift the generator.

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Best Dual Fuel Inverter Generator shortlist

 

How Does A Dual Fuel Generator Work? 

Dual fuel generators use two fuel types, diesel or natural gas, to power a generator. Unlike conventional generators, the fuel can be mixed in the same proportions or used alone, depending on the engine and design.

By creating electricity from more than one source, the generators are versatile and cheaper to run. They also produce better power than standard generators. The design between dual and single-fuel generators is practically the same apart from the fact that the earlier can run on two fuels. Hence, it is a little more technical than the latter.

Dual-fuel generators convert mechanical energy from an external source into electrical energy. The electrical energy is then released as an output to power connected devices. Like an energy engine, the generator converts chemical or mechanical energy into energy by capturing the motion and forcing electrons from an external source through an electric circuit. That said, generators don’t create electricity.

Instead, they convert energy into electricity. Dual-fuel generators rely on fuel sources to create mechanical power through a circuit to induce an electrical current. Once the current is established, it is directed via copper wires to channel electricity to external electrical systems.

From Faraday’s principle of electromagnetic induction, he discovered that a conductor moving in a magnetic field can create electrical charges directed to generate a current flow. A generator’s operation is like moving wire near a magnet to give electricity a direction, just like water is pushed through a pipe by a pump.

The main components of a generator include: 

  • Engine: The engine supplies energy to the generator and determines the quantity of power the machine can provide.
  • Alternator: The alternator converts mechanical energy to electrical energy.
  • Fuel system: The fuel system includes the fuel pump, tank, a pipe that connects the engine to the tank and back.
  • Voltage regulator: A voltage regulator helps the conversion from AC to DC.
  • Exhaust and cooling systems: The exhaust system removes fumes during operation, and the cooling system prevents the machine system from overheating.
  • Lubrication system: It ensures lubrication of small moving parts in the generator to avoid wear and ensure a smooth operation.
  • Battery charger: This is an automatic component that allows you to start the generator.
  • Control panel: The control panel lets you monitor the generator’s performance and controls the different operational aspects.
  • Frames: Frame refers to the physical structures you can see.

Where Can You Use Dual Fuel Generators? 

  • Hospitals: Dual-fuel generators offer a more consistent power supply than conventional generators. Hence, they are handy for use in hospitals where there is a constant and demanding need to keep the power. Besides, generators are mostly used for emergencies, and no other place screams of emergency than a hospital.
  • Private homes and residential homes: You can also use dual-fuel generators at home to ensure an uninterrupted power supply. Instead of relying on one fuel source, you can buy the machine and protect your family from emergencies. The generators are sturdy and are designed to withstand all types of weather conditions. Hence, they will find practical application in any home in different parts of the city and at any time of the year.
  • Standby power for sites: Construction, agriculture, and mining sites often experience power outages. Since you can’t do everything by hand, you can enjoy the benefits of a standby dual-fuel generator. The machine is ideal for working in remote and hard-to-reach locations as they are designed to handle rugged use either as primary or backup power.
  • Camping: Dual-fuel generators add civilization to rugged outdoor living. Inverter generators are practical for camping since they are quiet and functional.

The Advantages of Owning a Dual Fuel Inverter Generator:

A Versatile Design 

The most obvious and arguably the feature that sets a dual-fuel inverter generator apart from a conventional generator is its versatile design. The ability to choose between the different fuel types you want to use makes a huge difference. What happens when one fuel type is no longer available in a country that experiences shortages and scares?

You can conveniently switch the other supported and available fuel types. A generator with a dual fuel design allows you the opportunity to enjoy the luxury of electricity when any of the fuel types are available. We also need to mention that it is easy to switch between the fuels in case of emergencies.

Durable Construction and Design 

A generator, even conventional ones, are designed to withstand environmental challenges and harsh weather. Hence, they are ruggedly built to last for an extended period. However, external construction does not always protect the fuel that powers the generator. For example, gasoline has a short shelf-life; hence, one damaging element can render it useless in a short period.

If it is damaged and kept in the generator, it can do equal damage to the machine. Like destroying a unit from the inside out, it can damage the generator. By implication, gasoline as a fuel type is best reserved for emergencies due to its low shelf-life. A secondary fuel type more ideal for prolonged or extended use makes a difference since you can’t always rely on one.

Therefore, the option is to either buy a single dual-fuel generator or two generators. Besides durable build and construction, dual-fuel generators are handy to ensure the fuel does not damage the generator.

All-weather Capabilities 

A generator’s efficiency is affected by temperature. Not just the fuel, but it also affects the generator. For example, liquid propane volume shrinks in the cold, thereby reducing the pressure in the tank. When the temperatures drop too low, it can negatively affect the generator. In some cases, it may even cause it to stop working.

On the other hand, dual-fuel generators don’t face the same problem since it offers a more reliable energy source even when the year is at its coldest. The generator’s durable design includes all steel frames and other durable parts to withstand harsh conditions. The construction is also handy to reduce noise levels and vibrations. Most models come with all-terrain wheels for convenient transporting and storage.

Effective Economic Solution 

Dual-fuel generators are more functional than their single-fuel counterpart. The reason is that they offer a longer runtime and more power. They are also cheaper to run and maintain since the fuel source helps avoid emergency shortages and scarcity. More importantly, though, the fuel sources differ in effectiveness and efficiency. For example, gasoline is more effective than propane as far as generating electricity is concerned.

Hence, if you are interested in energy efficiency during usage, gasoline is the better option. However, propane burns cleaner and has less impact on the environment. This feature is handy for those that want to reduce their carbon footprint and still enjoy premium electricity. Instead of making two separate generator purchases, you can have the best of both worlds with a single purchase.

A dual-fuel generator lets you conveniently choose between the two fuel sources when you want to, thereby increasing the ease of use. Therefore, you can enjoy the efficiency of one fuel type and the low economic impact of the other-a choice you can never have with a single-fuel generator.

Convenience and peace 

There is a level of peace of mind that comes with knowing you have a form of protection regardless of what happens. When there are multiple options, your mind can rest; assured that you won’t lose power from scarcity, lousy weather, or any other cause.

Since a generator’s essence is to make you feel safe during a power outage, dual-fuel generators make you feel safer since you rely on one fuel source. You can conveniently choose between any fuel source based on availability and your consumption needs. Besides, the generators require less maintenance and are built to last. Plus, there are numerous options you can choose from.

Common FAQs about Your New Best Dual Fuel Generator:

  • Are dual fuel generators safe to power sensitive electronics?

Clean and stable sine wave energy is key to powering sensitive electronic devices. Since spikes and drops usually affect and damage the processor, you need a dual-fuel inverter generator that produces clean sine wave power. If the AC power indicates a pure sine wave, you can use the generator to power sensitive electronics.

  • Can dual fuel generators run on natural gas?

Certain dual-fuel generators, adapted for the purpose, can run on natural gas. However, it can be tricky since there is a significant difference in fuel types and operating temperatures.

Nonetheless, natural gas is a less expensive way to generate power and is substantially efficient. It also does not produce a strong odor and is cheaper to buy. Since natural gas burns cleaner than diesel and requires less maintenance, dual-fuel generators using natural gas don’t need much care and produce cleaner output. Propane is the most standard type of natural gas.

  • What are the major benefits of the best dual fuel generator?

A dual-fuel generator lets you save money as it packs the advantages of two generators into one. Propane is less expensive and burns cleaner than diesel if it is available. Apart from this, it ensures an uninterrupted power supply. It is a reliable form of power as it is versatile, effective, and has a low environmental impact. The generator is durably built to withstand tough and harsh weather conditions.

Besides the build, propane never goes bad; hence, it has a longer shelf life than generators that only uses gasoline. More importantly, it requires less maintenance as it features sturdy frames and strong materials for durable and reliable all-weather performance.

  • Are dual fuel generators good?

Dual-fuel generators are economical and environmentally-friendly as they produce less toxic emissions and are ideal for different applications. Compared to regular units, their design lets you take advantage of their highly flexible performance to ensure optimal performance in other operating conditions. Hence, regardless of the weather, you can always use the generators.

Apart from this, you won’t be affected by fuel scarcity as you can conveniently switch from one fuel source type to another without breaking the bank. The generators are also easy to maintain, highly portable, and ideal for keeping around in emergencies.

  • Why are Inverter Generators So Quiet?

The engine design is responsible for the quiet performance of an inverter generator. The technology it uses to produce power is significantly different from conventional generators because of the technology used. The technology converts a high-frequency AC into DC and then into AC. This conversion process ensures a constant noise level and creates a stable sine wave that keeps the noise level acceptable.

The design also provides more control over the voltage, frequency, and power the machine supplies. Apart from this, manufacturers also add a muffler to reduce the noise created by the generator. Plus, the design reduces internal shaking to keep the engine at a constant level and reduce noise.

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