Generator vs inverter generator what’s the difference?

This is a stupid question. I think I get a inverter generator has a inverter and provides clean power. From a practical purpose what is the big difference for someone charging the battery, coffee maker, microwave during the day? How do I justify the cost?

A normal generator is a AC generator hooked up to a engine. The engine has to spin at either 1800 or 3600 rpm to produce 60hz 120v power. To spin at 1800 the engine has to have more power because that has four poles which has greater resistance. So a majority of generators you see that are portable use lower resistance generators with two poles, hence 3600 rpm. So most portables will be very loud as they are basically running full power all the time.

Inverter generators are actually DC generators. That DC power is then converted via the inverter to AC. This allows the generator to throttle up and down in a range of rpm’s and still provide enough DC power to the inverter to power everything you want to run that is AC.

From a cost perspective a non-inverter generator will be cheaper but many places don’t allow it. You should consider that when making your decision. It is also very loud and disturbing to the people camping around you.