PacB Group // Why Businesses Should Invest in Commercial Generators


Why Businesses Should Invest in Commercial Generators


Dieselpowered generators are commonly used for commercial applications due to several advantages they offer over other types of generators. Commercial generators are going to be three-phase units as most commercial applications will require three-phase power. A generator is often referred to as a “genset” because it consists of two primary components: the engine and an alternator. Commercial generators, being three-phase devices, generate voltage in three sequential sine waves, each with a 120° phase offset between them.

Commercial generators configured for the South African market typically produce output voltages of between 380 and 400 volts, but alternators can be designed to output different voltages if required.

The power density and efficiency characteristics of commercial diesel generators are especially suited to applications where constant high-power demand is required.


Commercial Generators Provide Grid Backup

Given Eskom’s likely ongoing struggles to provide reliable power in the foreseeable future, most commercial and industrial businesses find themselves virtually compelled to invest in and install commercial generators.

South Africans have already experienced over 200 days of loadshedding in 2023.

Load-shedding has been imposed on a virtually permanent basis since September 2022. While being compelled to install a commercial generator might be seen as an unwelcome expenditure, it is crucial to consider the costs associated with continuous power outages.

Ongoing production interruptions, compromised customer service, and potential revenue losses are potentially far worse than the capital cost of a genset. Acquiring a genset is a prudent step to offset these potential losses and ensure continuous operations during power-supply uncertainties.


Commercial Generators Suit a Variety of Applications

Commercial generators exhibit amazing versatility as a source of electrical power. They can be connected in two configurations: the Delta connection and the “Y” or “star” connection. In the Delta connection, the three windings form a closed loop resembling the Greek letter Delta, while in the “Y” or “star” connection, one end of each winding is joined together, leaving the other ends for external connections, creating a configuration that resembles the letter “Y” or a star.

A single phase of a three-phase diesel generator can supply power to single-phase loads, as long as the power output rating of that individual phase is not exceeded. Additionally, certain gensets with reconnectable ends can be derated and converted from three to single phase.

To enhance system reliability, provide redundancy, or increase capacity, multiple commercial generators can be connected in parallel. This is particularly useful when additional loads are added, and the generator installed initially becomes insufficient to power the added load. By electrically joining two or more gensets, their power outputs are combined. For the most straightforward parallel operation, it is preferable to use generators of identical size rather than units of different capacities.

Commercial generators are flexible regarding frequency output, as most commercial generators can provide either 50 or 60 hertz frequency. By simply running the engine at 1800 RPM, 60 Hz output is produced, while running the engine at 1500 RPM yields 50 Hz output. One should be cautious when considering making this type of change to the generator output as there are limitations to which gensets are suitable. Obtaining specialist advice is strongly recommended before making any assumptions.


Why Commercial Generators are the Go-To Choice for Business

Having a commercial generator offers numerous advantages for businesses, especially those that rely heavily on continuous power supply.

The primary benefit of commercial generators is the fact that they provide a reliable backup power source in the event of a power outage or load-shedding. They ensure uninterrupted operations, prevent downtime, and allow businesses to continue functioning. If the generator is fuelled and maintained, it will continue to provide power, night or day and during adverse weather conditions.

With a commercial generator in place, businesses can maintain their production activities and processes, and keep critical equipment running. Minimising disruptions to productivity may have significant cost benefits, which more than offset the cost of purchasing and running a genset. Having power is particularly crucial for industries, such as healthcare, data centres, communications, and emergency services, where any downtime can have serious consequences.

Commercial generators enable businesses to continue providing essential services and meeting customer needs, upholding the company’s good name and maintaining customer service levels. This helps retain customers by preventing them from looking at alternative sources of supply.

In some industries, having a backup power source is a regulatory requirement and part of the compliance and safety measures the business is obliged to have in place. For example, hospitals, data centres, and certain industrial facilities are mandated to have backup power to protect lives and critical data, and maintain essential services.

Commercial generators with diesel engines are built to withstand heavy loads and prolonged operation. They have longer lifespans than many other types of engines, making them a reliable choice for continuous usage in commercial settings. Diesel engines produce high torque, which allows them to handle heavy electrical loads, such as starting large electric motors, making them suitable for several industrial applications.

Diesel fuel is widely available in most parts of the world, making it convenient for businesses to access fuel for their generators. Additionally, many commercial establishments already have diesel storage and handling facilities in place at their sites for use in other diesel-powered equipment or vehicles. Diesel fuel has a longer shelf life and is less prone to degradation compared to petrol, which can be beneficial for commercial generators that are used less frequently. Commercial generators are efficient, have relatively low maintenance needs, and have longer service lives.

Commercial generators are suitable for a wide range of applications, including as backup power for hospitals, data centres, manufacturing plants, and construction sites. They are also well suited for use in remote locations where grid is absent or unreliable.


Choose Wisely Go with Industry Leaders

The choice of generator type depends on site-specific requirements, such as power needs, usage patterns, how noise sensitive the site is, local fuel availability, and environmental considerations. In recent years, there has been an increasing interest in alternative fuel sources and renewable technologies. This may lead to a shift in the types of generators used in the future. However, diesel-powered commercial generators remain the most popular choice for commercial applications due to their efficiency, reliability, and adaptability.

Known for exceptional service and technical excellence, PacB is an industry leader in the powergeneration industry in Southern Africa. Best known for our industrial generators, our expertise spans a wide range of energy-generation sources, including renewable energy systems and UPSes. At PacB, our team of experienced engineers and technicians is dedicated to crafting and maintaining robust solutions for industrial power users.

By choosing PacB, you can confidently bank on our proven track record demonstrated by our extensive portfolio of successful commercial and industrial power-generation systems.

No matter the size of your project, from small residential setups to large, utility-scale installations, we have the technical proficiency and specialised system design expertise to ensure optimal system performance. Take control of your power supply with us by your side. Contact us at PacB today for an optimum solution.


Our qualified technicians offer support and advice in the selection of the right power solution for your needs by calculating your power requirements.

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