diesel generator for emergency electric power

How Long Can A Diesel Generator Run Continuously?

Diesel generators are designed to run for a longer period of time as commercial establishments including the utility company need them to provide power. On average, standby generators can operate for about 3,000 hours to power medium-sized homes. However, it’s not recommended to run a whole house generator continuously for 500 hours or longer.

Imagine running an ice cream stall away from the electrical outlet or access to utilities, or experiencing a prolonged power outage after a storm. Losing electricity for several days is very inconvenient, especially when you have kids or a business to operate. Having a diesel backup generator is extremely helpful in keeping appliances plugged during these tough times.

Keep reading to understand how long can a generator continuously run and the different types of generator out there.


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How Many Hours or Days Diesel Generator Can Run

Some of the key factors to consider when running diesel engines include maintenance, power output, fuel supply, adding fuel, gas line, and engine type. According to most manufacturers, all these things limit how long can you run a generator continuously.

On the other hand, fuel capacity is the main limiting factor that will stop your generator from continuous use.

To calculate how many hours or days a diesel generator can run, you need to divide the fuel capacity of your generator by its consumption rate. Given you’re running your generator with a full fuel tank, you can get a good estimate of its maximum runtime by doing the calculation.

The runtime generally depends on how much power you’re using, but that formula will give you an approximate number of hours or days you can run most generators continuously.

More often than not, you can see the exact answer on the generator’s specs. The maximum runtime usually depends on the 1/2 load, which means you’re using half of the power capacity that the machine can generate.

So let’s give you a decent estimate on how long can you run your diesel generator; on average, the best generators can operate continuously for up to 12 hours.


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Different Types of Generator

The two main types of gas generators are portable and standby generators. They are both designed to keep your lights and other appliances on during a continuous electricity interruption.

While not all types of gasoline generators are made to run continuously, we can help you decide which type is most suitable for your endless supply needs.

1. Portable generator. This new generator can run for a total of 2,000 hours as this type of generator is made for camping trips and emergencies. It can typically run between 6 to 18 hours or shorter increments of time.

You can count on portable generators when there are extended outages in your area.

2. Standby generator. This stationary propane generator is ideal for both commercial and residential building continuous operation. Standby generator run for several days depending on the brand, engine oil level, fuel source, oil filters, and size.

You can use a standby generator overnight or for longer-span emergencies. Unlike portable natural gas generators, this type can operate for a few hours more – a total of 3,000 hours.

Most diesel generators run smoothly, though the generac generator running time generally depends on how much more fuel you can store in the tank. More importantly, diesel fuel can be an expensive backup power option for extended periods of use.