Finding Your Next Diesel Marine Generator

Finding Your Next Diesel Marine Generator
by Adrian Fletcher

A diesel marine generator functions as a primary or backup power source for vehicles or machinery that are likely to come in contact with liquid or water. So you will find them used on boats and ships, in ports and harbors or even in plant where large refrigeration unit are needed.

You’ll also find them in supermarkets for refrigeration purposes. They are specifically build to resist water to a certain degree. This is one of their selling features you could say.

A marine generator is different from a box standard generator in that it has a protective outer casing and individual parts that are more resistant to water.

For instance salt water is a catalyst for rust on many items of machinery. A marine generator will be made of sturdy material and will be treated with rust resistant paint. The innards or working parts of the generator are designed to work in environments where the atmosphere will be humid too.

When it comes to selecting a diesel marine generator you can go down two routes. You can buy a new model or a used model. People are often interested in used models because diesel marine generators are not a cheap piece of equipment and can be out of financial reach of many people.


If a used option is your preferred choice then you need to do a bit of research on the individual unit. The baseline is that you need to know how many hours it has been running and what kind of elements it has had to weather.

If a generator has been dropped in the sea for instance you may want to steer clear. A service history may also be pertinent information.

Be it new or used, the next thing to think about is how much power or wattage you will need. A large ship may be hard to gauge as the power needs may go up and down over a few weeks. Run a monitoring exercise over a 3 month period to get a better average. If you are using the generator in a refrigeration plant it may be easier to work out the load you will need.

You also need to select the type of fuel that will run the generator. There are various types, from standard gasoline and diesel to natural gas.

Look for brand names too as they have the track record in an industry where knowledge is generally gained through failures. The best brands to go for are Onan, Westerbeke, Kohler, Mase and Fischer Panda marine generators. They have a history and reputation in the industry and produce quality machinery.

These manufacturers have many types and models on the market. They each have their unique selling points but ultimately it is their capacity and price that will probably help you decide which diesel marine generator to get.

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