Propane vs. Gas Generator

When making decisions regarding how to best power a home or business – even in the event of an emergency – property owners have many factors to weigh. These factors include cost-effectiveness, environmental impact, safety, maintenance and upkeep, and much more. 

There are multiple ways to power up your home, even when the power is out, and each has its benefits and drawbacks. When it comes to backup generators, two of the main options are using propane and gasoline. 

If you’re stuck trying to decide between a propane generator and a gasoline generator, take a look at the following considerations and see what might be best for you. 

Pros and Cons of Propane Generators

Pros of Propane Generators

  • More eco-friendly than gas. – “Propane engines emit 12 percent less CO2 emissions, 20 percent less NOX emissions, and 60 percent less CO emissions than gasoline engines. They also produce 80 percent less smog-producing hydrocarbon emissions than diesel engines,” says the National Propane Gas Association.
  • Easier to refuel. – As long as the propane truck can get to your property, you’ll have a continuous supply. If you have a large propane tank, you can power your home in the event of a long-term emergency. 
  • No expiration date. – Unlike gas, propane can actually outlast the tank it is stored in.  
  • Less noisy than gas. – If maintaining a calm and quiet atmosphere is a priority, propane might be your best bet. 
  • More powerful than gas. – “The largest gas generator can usually be considered little more than a ‘survival’ machine that can keep a few appliances and lights running – and with a lot of noise! The stationary propane generator, on the other hand, often begins at around 15000 watts, and can supply all of the home’s needs for nearly indefinite periods of time (as long as propane delivery is available),” explains Energy and Climate

Cons of Propane Generators

  • More expensive machines. – Since stationary propane generators can supply power to your entire home (even the HVAC system!), the machines are a bigger investment. 
  • More complex to repair. – Like any good machine, stationary propane generators require regular maintenance to stay in mint condition. Professional generator maintenance services will be key to getting the most out of your generator. 
  • Less efficient than gas. – “A gallon of propane has 27% less energy than a gallon of gasoline,” says the Alternative Fuels Data Center

Pros and Cons of Gas Generators

Pros of Gasoline Generators

  • More efficient fuel source. – Per gallon, you can get more power from gas than propane. 
  • Most common portable generator. – Portable gas generators are handy for applications such as camping and other outdoor purposes. 
  • Easy to find gasoline under normal circumstances. – In non-emergency situations, gas is readily available. 
  • Less expensive to purchase and repair. – Since gasoline generators are more simple machines and can power only a handful of appliances at one time, they require less of an investment. 

Cons of Gasoline Generators

  • Difficult to find fuel in emergencies. – When a natural disaster strikes, gas stations often shut down, and it may be difficult to use a gas generator for long-term power supply if you do not have a large store of gasoline. 
  • More expensive to fuel. – Gasoline prices, especially under emergency circumstances, have been known to spike. 
  • Harder to store gasoline. – Since gasoline can expire, it requires a fair amount of diligence to keep a supply of good gasoline on hand. 
  • More dangerous to store fuel. – The logistics of storing gasoline and fueling up a gas generator is more hazardous than propane. 

Indianapolis Generator Company

Here at Midwest Generator Solutions, we carry a full catalog of top-of-the-line residential and commercial backup generators. As expert generator technicians and authorized dealers, we stand behind the quality engineering of Generac, Kohler, and Briggs & Stratton generators. 

Depending on what you plan to use your generator for, we can help you find the perfect fit, whether gas or propane. 

Contact us at Midwest Generator Solutions today to inquire about buying and installing a generator for your property.