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Used Diesel Generators

Are you exploring buying a used diesel generator for your business and need advice around how to find the best value for your money?
Used Diesel Generators

Solent Power: supplying quality used diesel generators

At Solent Power we supply new and used diesel generators and can help with answering any questions you may have to ensure you purchase a used generator in good condition rather than get caught out with an unreliable machine that costs you more money!

How much are used generators compared to new generators?

There are a number of reasons why second-hand diesel generators become available in the market. More often than not, used generators are ex rental generators that have exceeded their commercial life and are sold on by the rental companies and replaced with new generators in the fleet.

Sometimes ex-standby generators become available which can be very good value as they will have low run hours and are generally well maintained by a reputable independent generator specialist.

Ex-Rental Generators

There is often a perception that ex rental generators are better condition because they are more likely to have been regularly serviced, similar to a rental car. This is not really accurate, as rental generators can have a very tough operating life, working hard in harsh environments such as quarries or building sites.

Often ex rental generators have run long hours on low load such as on building sites running LED lighting or small power, which causes issues such as generator engine carbon build up or cylinder glazing.

In addition to this, most generator rental companies tend to use cheaper quality oil and filters which can lead to increased engine component wear during their working life.

That being said, There are still some reliable ex rentals from time to time that will be a cheap purchase for people on low budgets. Some of the features ex-rental generators have are;

  • Lifting points and fork pockets for mobility
  • Generator earth leakage detection for electrical safety
  • Motorized breakers – sometimes sync capable
  • Better acoustic insulation -run quieter as designed for mobile applications
  • Output electrical sockets fitted as standard for easy connection
Used Ex-Rental Standby Generator
An Ex-Rental Standby Generator

It’s always best to buy from a reputable dealer that has carried out an assessment and service on the machine prior to purchase to ensure there are no hidden issues!

There are several rouge traders who will happily sell you an unreliable or unsafe used generator, and this can be very painful when you have no warranty.

Ex-Standby Generators

Ex standby generators can be a fantastic value option when purchasing a used generator. Typically they will have very low run hours as they are only used in emergencies or for regular testing for short periods.

The variety of used standby generators is quite high, as often these machines have been designed to suit a particular installation, therefore can come with things such as:

  • External bespoke generator canopies
  • External cable connection boxes
  • Fuel transfer pumps
  • Bespoke ventilation or exhaust extensions
  • Signalling connections or integrations such as BMS interfacing

Used standby generators often become available from replacements with new, or from decommissioning and removals from workspaces that no longer require standby generators.

There can be disadvantages of buying used standby generators such as:

  • Availability of parts – Sometimes older generators can be very difficult to find parts due to the age of the equipment.
  • Lack of run hours – Very low run hours is a bad sign, as this means the generator has been left idle for several years without running and keeping all of its moving parts and seals lubricated. This can be a bad purchase.
  • Obsolete control systems – Older equipment can have unsupported control systems which are hard to diagnose and repair faults when they fail. If older generator controllers fail they generally need to be upgraded with a retrofit generator controller which can be expensive.
  • Lack of manuals or drawings – If theses are no longer with the used generator it can make things challenging when trying to fault find or source parts.
Still need help choosing the right used generator for your business? Our friendly team are standing by to help.

How much are used generators compared to new generators?

Prices of used generators varies quite massively and there are a number of factors that generally determine the market value such as:

  • Machine Age – Newer used generators will command a higher price.
  • Run Hours – The higher the generator run hours are, the more maintenance may be needed or issues experienced. High hour machines will be much cheaper. For generator used generator that have been used to run equipment previously, a good run hour to aim for would be under 5000hours.
  • Service History – Like buying a car, a used generator with service history is more likely to be more reliable and hence command a higher purchase price.
  • Generator Specification – Higher spec machines with more features may cost more.
  • Generator Brand – Used generators from reputable manufacturers will command a higher price. Quality engine brands will also influence purchase price such as used Perkins generators or used Caterpillar generators.

Sometimes quality used generators in good condition can cost as much as 70% of a brand new machine. In cases like these it can sometimes make better sense to explore buying new to benefit from better reliability, asset life span, support and warranty.

Used Caterpillar Generator
Talk to us today to explore all of your options and see if we can help you choose the right generator.
Ex-Rental Generator

What warranty do used generators have?

Used diesel generators are sold without any warranty or guarantees. Even when bought through a registered trader, this remains the case unlike the auto industry which has regulations to provide a minimum 3 month period for all used cars.

This presents a risk for the buyer as used generators are ‘’sold as seen’’.

At Solent Power we perform a full inspection, service and load test on all used generators prior to offering them for sale. This includes electrical safety checks and engine protection checks.

By doing this we can minimize the risk of failure to our customers and also have the opportunity to rectify any issues prior to sale.

Our reputation as a business relies on providing this level of service!

There are some rogue traders who simply acquire the used generators and sell them on without performing these inspections or any due diligence which can result in customers being burned and losing money.

If you are looking to buy a used generator from someone and wish for it to be inspected prior to purchase, we will be happy to advice and arrange an inspection for you for peace of mind.

Ask us about our used generator inspection service.
Used diesel Generators

Where can I buy a used generator?

Some manufacturers will offer certified used generators such as Caterpillar, and there are probably a handful of reputable and proven used generator suppliers in the UK that can provide the right level of service and quality of equipment you can trust.

Of course, at Solent Power this is an area we can help with and advise you what used generators are available for your requirements.

If you would like help with buying a used generator please contact us to have a friendly chat about your needs and we can give you the best advice and options.
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If you'd like to learn more about Used Diesel Generators, please get in touch.
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