Can You Add An Inverter to a Generator?

By Matthew Joseph Nandirio •  Updated: 09/27/21 •  6 min read

Blackouts, permanent failures, or any other power outage bring havoc to your home. All these things disrupt your daily routine and inhibit the appliances that keep people safe during extended periods of intense heat. Here is when generators come into play.

But when it comes to electricity distribution, the standard terms used are not just generators but inverters. Many people are often confused over the use of generators and inverters. There’s a question that I often hear from other people: can adding an inverter to a generator enhance its efficiency?

Solar Inverter
Solar Inverter

 If you’re also searching for its answer, then you have come to the right page. This article will share an insight into adding an inverter to a generator. But, before getting into the main topic, let’s first discuss how both of them differ from each other. So, let’s get started.

Inverter Vs. Generators

A generator is an electrical generating device that produces power from external sources. In contrast, an inverter has power from a fixed DC source and then converts that power into AC. In other words, an inverter converts the direct current into AC which is used by all household appliances. On the other hand, a generator generates electricity from various sources of mechanical energy.

Both of the electrical devices have their advantages and disadvantages. But is it possible to use both of them together? Or can we add an inverter to a generator? The next section of this article will answer all these queries. So, do stick till the end.

Do I Need An Inverter For My Generator?

Yes, you can add an inverter to a generator to have a longer run-time when there is a power outage. The essential load requires an uninterrupted power supply when the main AC power supply falls for an extended time. The inverter can be used to power the critical loads. The generator can start manually or automatically when the power cuts and the inverter battery becomes exhausted. In this way, the inverter won’t be alone to bear the excessive burden. 

What the inverter does is that it draws the power from the generator instead of its batteries and continues to power the critical loads. In such a situation, the run time of the inverter doesn’t get affected by the battery’s capacity.

 Moreover, the extended run time can be achieved by using extra batteries. But since this method costs more and also acquires more space, it isn’t worth using. An inverter backed up by an AC generator is the simplest way to produce power for a longer time at an affordable price.


What Does An Inverter Do on a Portable Generator?

The portable generators have transformed much in recent years. These technological makeovers have increased their efficiency and overall performance from the past. If you’re planning to use a portable generator, then you consider using an inverter with it.

Have you come up with a reason?

It’s because an inverter is a much safer option to use and also boosts the performance level. When using a portable generator, there’s a high risk of carbon monoxide (CO). Inverters now offer the CO safety shutoff feature for improved fuel efficiency, reduced noise, and safety. You can buy portable inverters and add them with the generators or even buy an inverter generator.

An inverter attached to a generator will electronically throttle the engine up and down instead of running full tilt to meet the demand. This ultimately improves efficiency, which means that you don’t have to fill up the gas tank again and again. Also, it emits a lower percentage of CO and makes less noise.

Some generators come with a built-in sensor that triggers the automatic shutoff of the carbon monoxide gas that builds up to an extreme level and can become dangerous in enclosed spaces. Also, some generators have engines that emit less CO gas at the start. But, it won’t improve the efficiency or provide benefits that the inverter might offer.

Can You Run An Inverter and Generator At the Same Time?

Considering today’s demand for power requires more than the traditional portable generator does. It is capable of powering the necessities for a shorter time. But you can run an inverter simultaneously to increase the power and time you can use it.

It is easier to run an inverter parallel to a generator than to buy a heavier standby generator. To power the alternating current, you need a portable inverter that is efficient, lightweight, powerful, and fully featured packed.

Here are some of the most promising benefits of using an inverter and generator simultaneously:

  • Run quietly without causing any disturbance
  • Fuel efficient due to lower fuel requirements
  • Lightweight and easy to carry
  • Increased power generation and ensures that you can use it for an extended time.
  • You can use it for both indoor and outdoor adventures.

Remember that generators are designed to be used with other devices and are safe to use if you follow the manufacturers’ instructions. Thus, while setting up an inverter with a generator, make sure that you use proper cables. Also, both the inverter and the generator are compatible to avoid any further issues during its operations.

How Can You Connect an External Inverter to a Generator?

Once you know all the benefits of using an inverter with a generator, the next important step is to set up for your home. Many people want to benefit from this, but they lag since they don’t know the setup process. If you’re going to learn the setup process, then it’s very simple.

Here I’m going to share the best installation process so, follow it and make your experience worth amazing. Just click on this link and set up an inverter to a generator.

Final Thoughts

Adding an inverter and a generator opens room for better performance, efficiency, and long-lasting usage time. If you didn’t use an inverter and generator simultaneously yet, what are you waiting for? Hurry up and buy one for your home or business and forget worrying about unexpected power outages.

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Matthew Joseph Nandirio

Matthew Joseph Nandirio is the Founder of walkingsolar. After graduating from the University of Houston in 2002, matt started working as an electrical and electronic engineer for several multi-national solar energy companies. He has a wide range of experiences including solar system requirement analysis, planning, maintaining, debugging and even solar device development through research. He now shares his 20 years of expertise through his articles on the walkingsolar website. Further, he is also the author of two books on Solar Technology, “Solar Power for Villages” and “DIY Solar System for Dummies”.