We often get asked which is better, a Variable Speed Drive (VSD – sometimes called an inverter or a variable frequency drive) or a Soft Starter.
The applications for these two devices are different, as are the benefits, the cost, and the negatives. While we frequently install both, we have some pretty strong opinions on which one suits what system.
In this post we will briefly go through the positives and negatives of each type of drive, so you can see if it will suit what you need it for.
- Energy-saving – with rising energy costs you will be able to reclaim your initial expenditure of the Variable Speed Drive and installation far quicker. Plus, using less electricity is better for the environment, helping met carbon neutrality targets.
- Automaton of control – you can control the flow of power on several timers and by volume automatically
- More feedback – you will be able to read the results quickly and easily
- Precise speed control – this is one of the best features of a Variable Speed Drive, you have far more control over speed than with a soft starter.
In our experience, a Soft Starter is often upgraded to a Variable Speed Drive.
However, there are plenty of applications where a Soft Starter is the correct device to use to control a process.
For example, a pump where the flow needs to be continuous. The Soft Starter will slow the speed at which the water will flow, to avoid too much initial pressure on the system.
- Soft Starters can minimise impacts of sudden stop/starts
- Avoid heavy current surges which can burn out contacts and motors
- Cheaper than a Variable Speed Drove
If you have a question about which is the right control panel for you, then contact our team of experts by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 01621 868 138.