How to Calculate Diesel Generator Fuel Consumption?

Diesel Generator
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Given the unpredictable weather in India and recent years flooding disasters in Bihar, Jammu and Kashmir, Maharashtra and many other states in India, it is apparent that power supply can be compromised anytime in the country for an indefinite period of time. So it is better to acquire a power generator in advance and remain equipped to deal with any such sort of situation.

 In India, it is easy to fetch a diesel generator from the market but to select a one that consumes less amount of diesel and generates more amount of power needs sharp knowledge and wit.

There are diesel generator sets available in Indian markets who efficiency level is very less. They consume more fuel and generate less or equal amount of power that other generators generate in a lesser amount of fuel.

Irony is most people in India don’t know the science behind the fuel consumption of the diesel generators and methods to calculate the fuel consumption by any diesel generator.   They don’t have the knowledge that different brands of diesel generator sets available in India have a different consumption rate.

  Ways & Method to calculate Diesel Generator Fuel Consumption

 The amount of fuel your generator will consume will depend on factors like size, electricity load and for the time period, it is used. The specific fuel consumption of the diesel generators is calculated via following methods:

Method- 1:

Finding Fuel consumption

 A diesel generators fuel consumption is a measure of power generated per gallon of diesel.  If you know the power generated, divide that by the gallon of diesel consumed in a particular period of time, you will get per gallon of diesel consumed for generating a particular unit of electricity.

This method of calculating fuel consumption can be used with bigger units as well. The best method is to record it right after you fill your generator with gas.


Set the dashboard to zero

  Set the dashboard to zero reading.After filling the diesel generator, you should check whether it is it full or not.  If there is not any dashboard,   then note down the amount of diesel you poured into the generator tank, time and power consumed. And use these figures to measure your fuel consumption per unit of power generated.

 Run your generator, until your tank is empty and use an electric meter to record electricity. This will give you an accurate idea how to calculate the fuel consumption of generators.

Here are the basic formulae to calculate consumption of a diesel generator:

  1. Make use of a consumption chart to measure how much amount of fuel is used in one hour by generators of different sizes.
  1. Measure total power consumed during an hour. You can do it by installing a kilowatt-hour meter to diesel generator output.
  1. Use a standard conversion factor to convert the fuel consumed to kilowatt-hours.
  1. Divide generator output of the diesel generator in kWh by fuel input value used in kWh.
  1. Multiple the value by 100 to express it as a percent.


The fuel consumption rate varies from the generator to generator and is usually found in a range between 231 and 243 grams/kW hour.  So the difference in fuel consumption per unit of power between diesel engines is not too major.

In Comparison to petrol, it is slightly difficult to measure accurate fuel consumption because of variability on possible applications. A marine might consume more diesel than a stationary industrial generator.  So diesel consumption is measured in terms of the weight of fuel consumed per unit of power generated.

 So diesel generators running for a longer period of time at a constant speed are considered energy efficient than the other generators.

In the last one decade, the prices of fuels in India have never remained stable. The price of diesel, petrol and gas have gone up all the time.  While the actual fuel consumption of your generator will be decided by the power load, size and efficiency of the device, finding out your diesel generators fuel consumption is possible with the above-mentioned methods.

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