When it comes time to purchase a generator, there are two main types to know: electric and gas. Having any generator isbetter than having none, because of the safety and security continuous power offers you and your home, but there are clear advantages to choosing electric over gas.
Gas generators work similarly to a small motor, like that powering your lawnmower. A small, internal combustion engine ignites gas—either fed directly into the motor, or pulled from a hook-up to the utility line—which causes a motor to spin, generating electricity to any hook-ups.
Gas engines are noisy, smelly beasts that rumble and emit fumes. The most obvious downside to this setup is the environmental impact of burning fossil fuels, which continue to be one of the largest contributors to global warming. Other inefficiencies occur when some gas generators produce more electricity than what’s needed to sufficiently power the plugged-in devices. Without a surge protector, these electronics can be irreparably damaged.
Meanwhile, electric power banks, like the Goal Zero Yeti, pull power directly from the grid or a standalone source, like a solar panel. This energy is stored on an internal battery and is distributed safely, quietly, and without harmful byproducts. Yetis even have built-in surge protection and there’s no excess energy produced because the supply is simply pulled steadily from the lithium battery.
Not only are electric power banks cleaner than gas generators because they don’t burn gasoline or propane, they can be made completely green by charging them with a solar panel. Powering an electric power bank separately from the utility grid has the extra benefit of an added layer of protection from power outages. If the power grid and the gas lines are damaged because of a blizzard or storm, a gas generator may be rendered useless without an on-hand supply of gasoline.
Gas generators, like all engines, need to be run periodically. This means that even in periods without power-loss, gas generators must run for several minutes roughly once per month so as to maintain working order, which leads to further waste and expenses. Not only is this wasteful and damaging to the environment, but most owners neglect to do this, which leads to generators failing when they’re needed most. Some gas generators can cycle on automatically, but setting this up is expensive and does little to ease the burden on the environment.
Electric power is always-ready because Yeti power stations don’t have moving parts; they don’t actually generate power—they simply collect and store it for when it’s needed most. This makes them ultra-portable—capable of being stored on a shelf and carried by hand—and versatile. They’re just as trustworthy powering a delicate phone and a demanding large appliance. Pulling power from a gas generator is like taming a beast, while using an electric power bank is akin to scooping water from a pool.
Because electric power banks are easier to use, more efficient, and environmentally friendly, they’re exponentially more useful. Given all the downsides of a gas generator, you would think twice about lugging one to a tailgate, for example. The hotdogs would be spoiled by gnarly fumes, the game commentary drowned out by the rattling engine, valuable seating room taken up by bulky machinery. Nothing would spoil a camping trip more than a beastly rumbling engine. On the other hand, an electric power bank can be tossed in the back seat of a car or kept inside a tent, and powered without a supply of gas. When dealing with power loss or looking for a portable supply to go, reliability and versatility are paramount. Goal Zero’s Yeti power bank are designed to be rugged and resistant, supplying the electricity you need no matter where you go or what comes your way.