Like any other machinery of significant use to a business, backup generators come at a cost and a steep one at that. Add to it the costs of installation, fuel, maintenance and repair and suddenly it starts appearing rather unaffordable. That said, a generator is quintessential for a business’s smooth, disruption-free functioning. In fact, if you own a business that could face significant losses due to frequent and/or prolonged power outages, then owning a generator is not a choice but a necessity. In that case, how do you possibly go about making this substantial investment? Well, don’t you worry, as we are here to help you with just that and more!

So, without further ado, let’s get started with our top tips to buy a budget-friendly backup generator. 

Research and Research More

More often than not, the cost of a standby generator varies on the basis of the following aspects –

  • Make (Manufacturer) of the Generator
  • Model of the Generator
  • Size of the Generator
  • Quality of the Engine
  • State of the Generator – New/Used/Refurbished 

Since there are so many factors involved in the price that which you can avail the generator, it is best if you research as much as possible, before zeroing in on the actual machine you want to buy. If you are willing to compromise on the make, model or state of the generator, then you can easily shave off a few hundred dollars from the cost without compromising on the functionality of the same. However, please be warned that irrespective of the probable savings, you should never compromise on the size of the generator or the quality of the engine as these are the foundation of both the efficiency as well as the lifespan of the machine. 

Pick the Ideal Size of the Generator

In an ideal world, we would all want our generators to power all our appliances, equipment and machinery in addition to our lights and HVAC systems. Unfortunately, that may not be possible, especially when you are looking forward to buying a generator on a budget. Hence, it is recommended that you figure out the maximum power requirements of all the appliances and machinery on which your business is highly dependent. To do so, you must know the wattage required to start each of these, since this power is often way higher than the wattage required to simply keep the machines running. Make sure to also account for any increase in the power load due to additional machinery, in the near future. Once you know a ballpark figure for your power requirements, you can then let your dealer know the same, and they will help you pick the optimal size generators. As you may have guessed by now – the smaller the generator size, the more affordable its price! 

Buying a Used Generator

As mentioned earlier, a great way to scrimp on the cost of the generator is to buy a used one. Of course, doing so will mean that your generator will have a relatively shorter life span. However, you shouldn’t be too worried about this aspect, especially if you are buying a used generator from a reliable dealer such as Central State Diesel Generators! This will ensure that the generator has undergone primary checks and inspections, and any underlying issues with the same have already been addressed for your convenience. 

Want to know the parameters on which a used generator is evaluated before being purchased by the best dealer for used generators in Wisconsin? Well, here they are!

  • The make and model of the generator
  • The number of hours the generator has been used
  • The maintenance and repair schedule of the generator
  • The EPA rating of the generator

This in-depth analysis helps the dealer know the exact value of the machine and equips them to help you make an informed decision. Moreover, having a trusted dealer by your side implies that you will be just one call away from any maintenance or repair that might be needed down the line.  

Pro Tip – If you are willing to stretch your expenses by a little, you can ask for a used generator, which is still in warranty. This will help you save on the cost of replacing any parts if need be!

You may also like to read: 3 Phase Industrial Generator Buying Guide

Choosing a Generator Which Used Inexpensive Fuel

When it comes to opting for a standby generator that uses cheaper fuel, your go-to options are Natural Gas Generators or Diesel Generators. While natural gas is inherently cheaper, diesel ensures better efficiency of the generator, so you can pick any one depending on your preference, and ease of availability of the fuel type.

Now that you know all about buying an affordable standby generator for your business, make sure to start researching for the same. Once you know an approximate figure that you’ll have to spend on the generator based on your power needs, and preferences for the make, model and type of generator see if it matches your initial estimate. If not, you can either save money on some overheads or simply ask your dealer for the best possible price. More often than not, when used generator dealers have some room for negotiation, which can prove to be really helpful for you. That being taken care of, there will be nothing that could possibly stop you from buying a used commercial generator!  

Central States Diesel Generators is your go to source for new and used industrial generators. Choose from a wide selection of premium commercial generators, we only advertise what we own. Contact us on Phone: 262-955-7655 /  847-997-8090 or email us at


  • How to ensure affordable maintenance of standby generators?

Here are some tips regarding generator maintenance that will save you from any expensive repairs or part replacements –  

  • Power on the generator once every week for about 25-30 minutes at full capacity, as a way to exercise it. This will allow even circulation of oil through the engine, thereby strengthening the engine. 
  • Monitor the oil as well as coolant levels of the generator every month.
  • Get the generator inspected by a qualified technician, at least once or preferably twice every year. 
  • Place the generator in a cool, dry, spacious and preferably covered place with ample ventilation. 
  • Ensure that the generator is not infested by rodents or pests.
  • Make sure the generator is not surrounded by weeds, fallen leaves, and/or snow.
  • If you notice any erratic functioning, contact your dealer right away. They will help get the generator inspected and resolve any underlying issue in a timely manner. 
  • What are some of the best brands of generators?

Buying a commercial generator in sizes ranging from 25 kW to 3000 kW is almost always a safe bet, if they come from well-known, trusted manufacturers including the following –

  • Generac
  • Caterpillar
  • CAT
  • Kohler
  • Cummins
  • MTU
  • Kohler
  • Baldor


  • How do I Know if the Used Generator I am buying is worth the price?

Simply choosing a renowned and reliable dealer can and will ensure that you are getting an ideal deal. However, if you want to understand the nitty-gritties of buying a pre-owned commercial generator then here is an elaborate Buyer’s Guide for Used Generators which will help you make an informed decision!