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Construction site generator

What Is The Best Generator For A Construction Site?

On a construction site, consistent power is essential. Yet a lot of construction sites are in remote locations far from the power grid: building roads and railways, providing infrastructure for remote communities or tourist lodges and a whole host of other tasks. If you’re working in the Australian outback, it’s inevitable that you’ll need a generator at some point. Generators provide power for tools, lighting and equipment on worksites that are off the beaten track. With a tight schedule to meet and no time or money to waste, you need the best construction generator you can find.

Construction generators aren’t one size fits all: they come in different sizes, configurations and power capacities. But they have some things in common as well. They all convert mechanical energy into electrical energy and share common components like engines or motors, alternators and fuel systems.

There’s a balance to choosing a diesel generator for your construction site. Construction sites need large volumes of diesel fuel to power their machinery, yet a generator that’s too powerful for the job wastes valuable petrol and money.

Total Generators is the generator supplier of choice for many construction managers around the country and several other professionals operating in remote areas. We can help you choose the best construction generator for your site.  

Factors to Consider For Construction Site Generators

As a rule of thumb, you want a generator that provides enough electricity for your construction site while operating at 70%-90% capacity. Running a generator at 50% or less of its power capacity leads to a problem called wet stacking, where unburnt fuel builds up and drips from the exhaust system. Plus, running a generator that’s too powerful for the job wastes time and petrol. Some important considerations when you’re choosing the best construction generator include:

Construction site size

The larger your construction site, the larger your generator will need to be. You may even need two or more generators to meet your business needs.

Tools and equipment

A construction site with a lot of equipment and tools will need a more powerful generator than a smaller site with less machinery in operation.

Reserve power

Your generator’s spinning reserve is a capacity held in reserve for your generator to draw on quickly. This helps maintain the grid’s stability by providing a fast response to a sudden change in demand or supply.

Voltage capacity

Voltage is the amount of pressure between two points in a circuit, and in the simplest possible terms, it’s the pressure that pushes the charge. Along with a generator’s wattage, it pays to consider its voltage capacity as it controls how strongly the generator delivers its electrical current.


Generators come in single and three-phase models. A single-phase generator uses a solitary AC wave, while a three-phase generator has three currents running simultaneously. Not surprisingly, three-phase generators are more powerful, while single-phase generators are better suited to lighter loads.

No matter what kind of generator you choose, remember to follow the safety guidelines and always use your generator safely on a construction site.

Calculating The Size of the Generator You’ll Need

Construction site generator

Choosing the right size generator to meet your power needs is the most important part of finding the best construction generator. You’ll come across various terms to describe power ratings, such as watts, amps, kilowatts and kVA (kilovolt-amperes), which describe different units of a generator’s real and apparent power.

When you’re choosing the right diesel generator for your construction site, you’ll need to calculate the full electrical load of all the devices and tools you’ll be powering. For every piece of equipment, determine the starting wattage (the energy required to turn it on) and the running wattage (the energy required to operate it). You should be able to find these figures in the instruction manual, if not on the piece of equipment itself. Add up these figures to calculate your construction generator’s total power requirements.

If you need to convert from one unit of measurement to another, Total Generators’ power calculator can assist. You can use it to calculate amperes when kVA is known, convert kVA to kW, calculate the kVA required to start a motor and more.

The Different Types of Construction Generators Available

Choosing the best construction generator is a challenge for many reasons, including the fact that there are so many different kinds of generators on the market. The most common kinds of generators you’ll find on a construction site include:


Diesel generators for construction sites offer fuel efficiency, a steady stream of power, sturdy builds, and high levels of safety (diesel is less flammable than other gas varieties). They are useful both as prime and standby power sources.


Hybrid solar and diesel generators offer the best of both worlds: the eco-friendly and endlessly renewable energy of the sun and the reliable baseload power of diesel—the two factors in tandem to provide a consistent power supply that doesn’t waste resources.

Natural gas

Commonly used in areas where this type of gas is widely available, natural gas generators are less common than diesel generators for construction sites. Yet they have their advantages: a cleaner burn, lower upfront costs for fuel and lower operational costs among them.


Portable generators are smaller-sized generators that are easy to transport, which makes them ideal for construction sites in remote locations.


If you require more power than the average portable generator provides, towable generators can be pulled along behind vehicles and used to power medium-to-large-sized construction sites.


Perfect for areas with noise restrictions, silent generators have all the benefits of regular diesel generators but with the protection of soundproof enclosures.


Fuel-efficient and quieter than regular generators, inverter generators are perfect for sensitive equipment and smaller construction projects.


Industrial generators are powerful, heavy-duty machines that offer high power output to meet the demands of large construction operations.

Reliable Construction Generators at Total Generators

Construction site generator

Total Generators is the first choice for diesel generator hire among professionals in many of Australia’s strictest safety-focused industries, including construction, mining, defence, energy stations and sub-stations. Our equipment compliance standards have been developed in conjunction with our Global Client Partners to exceed our Australian Electrical Standard. Our range includes diesel generators, super-silent generators, trailer-mounted generators, solar hybrid generators and accessories like transformers, fuel cells, load banks, cables and powerlocks. With offices in Brisbane, Moranbah and Cloncurry in Queensland plus Katherine, Northern Territory, we make sure you’re never without power, wherever you are.

If you’re looking to buy a generator, we’re your one-stop shop for all your power needs, with a leading range of generators for all budgets. With leading-edge models from our power partners in the industry, like Power Generation, Denyo and Pramac, we can keep your lights on and your energy flowing no matter how large or small your project is.

With more than 25 years of experience powering Australian industries, Total Generators is used to providing solutions even for the most challenging conditions. Do you need some expert advice on finding the best construction generator? Contact the Total Generators team to assess your power needs and get a free quote.

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