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17 Best Portable Generators of January 2021

Wherever you can find yourself without a mile-a-mile electrical outlet your best bet is to invest in a portable generator. However, with so many generators on the market today, you may not know which one is right for your individual needs. That's why we have compiled a list of the best portable generators for every need.

With the support from AI and Big Data as well as 20,607 objective reviews of consumers, we ranked the top 17 products you may be keen on the Best Portable Generators. Listed below you will see major brands as: KISS GOLD, Jackery, DuroStar, Generac, Champion Power Equipment, WEN, DuroMax, FF FLASHFISH, Westinghouse Outdoor Power Equipment, BLUETTI.


Showing  1 - 10  in  17 results
1
  • SCORE
    9.6
    AI Score

    AI Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts. It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our AI Consumer Report tool based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites.

  • Brand
    KISS GOLD
2
  • SCORE
    9.6
    AI Score

    AI Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts. It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our AI Consumer Report tool based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites.

  • Brand
    Jackery
3
  • SCORE
    9.6
    AI Score

    AI Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts. It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our AI Consumer Report tool based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites.

  • Brand
    DuroStar
4
  • SCORE
    9.2
    AI Score

    AI Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts. It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our AI Consumer Report tool based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites.

  • Brand
    Generac
5
  • SCORE
    9.2
    AI Score

    AI Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts. It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our AI Consumer Report tool based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites.

  • Brand
    Champion Power Equipment
6
  • SCORE
    9.2
    AI Score

    AI Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts. It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our AI Consumer Report tool based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites.

  • Brand
    WEN
7
  • SCORE
    9.2
    AI Score

    AI Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts. It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our AI Consumer Report tool based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites.

  • Brand
    WEN
8
  • SCORE
    9.2
    AI Score

    AI Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts. It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our AI Consumer Report tool based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites.

  • Brand
    Champion Power Equipment
9
  • SCORE
    9.2
    AI Score

    AI Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts. It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our AI Consumer Report tool based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites.

  • Brand
    Generac
10
  • SCORE
    9.0
    AI Score

    AI Score is a ranking system developed by our team of experts. It from 0 to 10 are automatically scored by our AI Consumer Report tool based upon the data collected. This score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturer or sales agent websites.

  • Brand
    DuroMax

Last update on 2021-01-27 / Affiliate links / Images, Product Titles, and Product Highlights from Amazon Product Advertising API

4.9
7 ratings

Types

We all know 3 main types of generators are commonly used. They are  portable generators, inverter generators, and standby generators. However, in this article, we will only discuss the best portable generators based on usage needs, specifically: portable generators for home, camping, and boat.

1. Portable Generators for Home

Portable generators for homes mostly tend to be kept on hand for occasional cases of off-grid for a temporary period of time. They are typically only used for longer power outages and can be used for that exact purpose, possibly as much as once or twice a year (depending on where you live, weather conditions, what is the local picture and general conditions of the grid vicinity).

Many types of portable generators are manufactured and sold to the occasional home user. Many of these will be at the lower power level of the scale and may be marketed as "entertainment" devices, intended to power only one or two basic devices.

Owned by American parent company DuroPower, Durostar is a reliable brand. They are a reputable brand with a reliable and durable reputation. Durostar's DS4000S generator is quite user friendly, especially if you have any generator experience. You start it off with the EZ-pull recoil starter and getting it started is actually pretty easy. There is a low oil indicator light and if you do not pay attention it will automatically disconnect when the oil drops too low. This keeps your engine protected.

In the event of an emergency, you can choose your fuel or use what's available with Champion's 5500 Dual Fuel generator. Being able to choose between gasoline and propane has a number of benefits, especially when using a generator for backup during or after a storm. We appreciate the digital meter at the top of the dashboard that shows how often the voltage and current are being generated, as well as the total hours used - handy for keeping up with maintenance schedules.

Another interesting option for those who do not like the loud sound of a generator is the Westinghouse iGen2200 Generator. Operating with a noise output of just 52 dB at 25% load, this is one of the quietest running generators in its power frame. Not only is it quiet and powerful enough to power a wide variety of devices, the iGen2200 is also packed with industry-leading features. The easy-to-use control panel allows you to easily navigate between many features with ease. With easy-to-use controls and light weight, this generator is easily operated by even generator novices.

2. Portable Generators for Camping

When buying a portable generator for camping, you must follow many of the basic rules outlined in the section above for use at home. The best approach is to find out exactly how much power you will need to keep the equipment and appliances you want to use on the campsite, and then choose the smallest machine you can find that meets all of those needs with one additional small capacity.

In this portable generators for camping section, we will introduce to you 4 best portable generators by attribute. The attributes will be: quietest generator, lightweight generator, high powered generator and solar powered generator.

For the quietest portable generator, we’d recommend you to the WEN 56200i. With a lower budget for a camping generator, yet still ranking the highest for a few reasons, the WEN 56200i is one of the quietest running camping generators on the market. With 2000 watts, 48 ​​pounds, and 51 dB at a quarter load, this is a US-made product that is the perfect camping companion for your electricity needs.

Camping will take you a lot of mobility, so that's why you should consider a lightweight generator for convenience to carry. One of the best value options is the Briggs & Stratton P2200. Weighing in at 55 pounds, this gas-powered, 120V/2200 watt Briggs and Stratton inverter generators are a popular choice among camping generators. It's quiet too, at an active volume of 59 dBA. Its price is only half that of a popular Honda generator, but also reliable.

The higher capacity camping generator is great for more full-time RVers. And our top pick will be the DuroMax XP4850EH Dual Fuel. This heavy duty DuroMax generator is robust, reliable, and EPA approved for safe use in national parks. It has an AC output of 3850 watts and two 120v, 20 amp, 3 pin sockets for standard household plugs. It is on par with a high power generator at 69 dBA.

Solar generators are great choices for completely off-grid life, and for RVing green renewables, for those who are a little more concerned with the environment when it comes to modern amenities. They are also silent, so that's an added bonus. Also, their prices are quite mid-range, so without the extra fuel costs they become a reasonable choice in the long run. For this product line, we agree that the Goal Zero Yeti 400 will bring you the most new experiences.

3. Portable Generators for Boat

Many larger boats come with corresponding large generators that are permanently installed - but of course that rarely happens for smaller boats, and so there is a thriving market for machines. Smaller portable generator aimed at owners of more modest sized boats. Note that a portable generator itself should never be used or filled on board or very close to a boat, as the risk of accumulation of toxic smoke, fire or electric shock is simply too high. We'll cover these risks in more detail in the safety section of this article.

Honda's line of mobile generators has long been best-selling for use. This 2,200 watt inverter is also an ideal candidate for marine use. Another big selling point for boat use is this super quiet generator. When you land, you don't want to disturb the other boatmen moored nearby. Honda EU2200i is very quiet, at just 48 to 57 dBA, no louder than the sound of a casual conversation.

How your generator looks probably doesn't matter, but if design matters to you, then Yamaha EF2000iSv2 might be the generator you're looking for. Reminiscent of a classic radio, this royal blue inverter from Yamaha is a great tool. Transport is also easy as it is compact, lightweight and has a convenient handle. This inverter provides clean power supply and pulse width control. With 2,000 watts of maximum and 1,600 watts running, it has enough power for most rowers. Thanks to the smart throttle, fuel economy is very good.

Other brands target the best Honda in the mobile generator game. Generac has gone the extra mile using bold Honda comparisons in their marketing materials. Generac claims that the iQ2000 clearly "beats Honda". When it comes to noise levels, a testing lab has confirmed that at some levels, the Generac is actually quieter than the Honda EU series of generators. When you load a quarter, you will have 7.7 hours of running time. The iQ2000 is another generator with 2,000 watts starting up, 1,600 watts running and parallel ready functionality.


Buying Guides

To be able to maximize the capacity of the portable generator, before you start buying, we recommend that you should learn and research carefully. Each need will have different features that are the best suit. Some of the tips below will help you choose the best portable generators for yourself.

1. Consider the sound/noise

The widely accepted generator is quite noisy when operated under load, although the available mobile generators operating at much lower noise levels have significantly improved in recent years. A common question among buyers - especially those with local or smaller scale needs - has always been "which portable generator runs the quietest?".

In fact, there is usually not a quick and difficult answer to this question; design and build quality of different generator models and brands vary widely and are continuously improved and perfected. However, some specific manufacturers and models are marketed as smooth mobile generators for buyers who want to prioritize volume reduction over raw power distribution.

There are a number of factors that affect the noise or loudness of a portable generator while it is running. Including:

  • Engine size (and associated power output capability).

  • Overall build quality, the most important thing about the engine itself.

  • Whether the engine is running inside the housing.

  • Precise setting and build quality of exhaust/muffler.

  • Cooling method (more cost-effective air-cooled portable generators typically hum louder than water-cooled versions).

  • Design and construction of frames/houses.

Some of the quietest generators that we have collected are Westinghouse iGen2200 Generator and WEN 56200i. Maybe you can try these two if you don’t want to disturb the neighbor.

2. Tips for choosing the suitable portable generators for home

A good rule of thumb when buying a regular home generator is to calculate the total power consumption of any device or appliance you definitely want to be able to keep running and choose a small portable generator. The most available will accommodate this capacity need (get a little extra headroom for safety and peace of mind).

As for which portable generator to use for home use, limit the next preliminary guidelines to get the average power from conventional appliances and equipment - add them and subtract the total for the job. Rate capacity of any portable generator unit you are considering whether they will meet the demand:

  • Refrigerator-freezer - anywhere between 150W-600W, depending on size and features.

  • Incandescent bulbs - typically around 60W-100W per bulb.

  • LED bulbs - typically 8W-12W per bulb.

  • Notebook - 50W-200W, depending on processor and peripheral capacity

  • Smartphone chargers - typically around 5W-15W, depending on make and model.

  • Home air conditioner - anywhere between 1000W-4000W, depending on size.

  • Kettle - 1500W-2000W.

  • Toaster - 800W-1800W.

  • Hair dryer - 1500W-2500W.

  • Microwave - 700W-1800W, depending on the size.

A lot of conventional home appliances can significantly vary in overall power consumption depending on the product, model, age, condition and ecological rating - so always make sense to check the manufacturer's instructions for any particular device you are sure to keep powered on before calculating the size of portable generators to buy for home use. You can rely on Durostar's DS4000S and Westinghouse iGen2200 Generator to keep your lights always bright.

3. How to choose the best portable generators for camping

If you are buying portable generators for caravans and motorbikes, pay special attention to the fact that different versions and models produce very different noise levels and not all have. Can suit all camping environments. Some campsites may not allow the use of larger, noisy generators because of noise restrictions on site for the benefit of other guests. 

Therefore, it is advisable to check in advance with the owners of any particular camping or trailer parks you know that you will want to bring your portable generator and adjust your purchasing plan for fit. And WEN 56200i surely can live up to your expectations.

If you care about nature and eco-energy, then we recommend the Goal Zero Yeti 400 which runs on solar power. You can enjoy your trip without worrying about the environment.

4. Some guides for choosing the right portable generators for boat

In addition to recalculating the overall power output that you might need in any particular situation while on board, there are other specific considerations to keep in mind when purchasing a portable generator specifically for a boat. These mainly revolve around the available space and the safe location of the generator when not in use:

  • Most boats are quite narrow in terms of space, and so larger generators are usually not a practical option.

  • You must never place a portable generator inside the cabin, below deck or in any other enclosed space on board. Due to space constraints above deck, this is often another factor that makes buying a smaller and more compact device a lot more priority.

  • The risk of fire and explosion should be carefully considered when setting up generators on boats, especially when working with flammable fuel sources.

  • Likewise, the installation of wiring and cabling is paramount when using the portable generator in any type of environment where there is a risk of water ingress and electric shock.

  • Noise levels are also a factor to consider when sailing around other water users and when anchored near other boats, people or buildings.

For more consideration, we all agree that Honda EU2200i and Yamaha EF2000iSv2 are suitable choices for running your boats.


FAQs

1. Which are the safety tips when using portable generators?

When faced with the FAQ "Is mobile generator safe?", it really doesn’t have an exact answer. Because it completely depends on how and where they are being used. Mobile generators themselves are generally safe, and modern versions in particular include a number of safety features to increase overall safety, user friendliness and convenience.

However, they are inherently engineered to generate high voltages, and most use hazardous and flammable liquid fuels to power this output - so potentially dangerous. If they are used carelessly or inappropriately.

In ideal use scenarios, generators provide a reliable and powerful backup, portable or emergency power supply in a wide range of applications and environments. However, there are some very important rules and best practices to keep in mind if you intend to operate a mobile generator safely. In this section, we are going to look at some of the key tips users should keep in mind at all times.

2. How can I maintain my best portable generators?

Generator maintenance is a fairly similar process between the three main types of engines. First, it is important to follow the manufacturer's maintenance schedule for each type of generator. Regular maintenance practice is general inspection. The checks include a leak test, assessing the oil and coolant level, examining the belts and hoses, and examining the battery terminals and cables. 

 

It is important to check the oil as it should be changed regularly. The oil change frequency depends on the manufacturer, frequency of use of the generator and your working environment. Normally, you should change oil after 100 hours of operation, especially if the generator uses a diesel engine.

Generator maintenance requires:

  • Annual fuel cleaning and filtration, as diesel fuel degrades quickly. After a few weeks of operation, the diesel fuel breaks down due to water and bacteria contamination, resulting in clogged fuel lines and filters. Fuel cleaning involves the annual use of biocides in all generators except for backup generators, where the biocide absorbs moisture.

  • The cooling system needs maintenance, requiring the cooling water level to be checked at available intervals. This must be done during the shutdown.

  • Check battery power; This is especially true for backup generators, as battery problems are the main cause of malfunction. Make sure the battery is strong and charged long enough not to cause any trouble when starting the generator.

  • Check regularly for current battery status. The test includes checking the electrolyte level and the specific gravity of the battery. The battery itself should be clean.

3. Can I just plug my portable generator into an outlet?

The simple answer is no. The more detailed answer is no, as it's not only extremely dangerous, but also illegal. Plugging your portable generator directly into a standard wall outlet could cause reverse current to the power line connecting to your home, serious injury or even death to an unsuspecting utility worker. are working to restore power or a downed power line. There is also a risk when connecting your portable generator to an electrical outlet, you could overload the circuit and cause a fire.

Having a transfer switch installed by a licensed professional is the best way to prevent disasters. A switch will disconnect your home from the grid while allowing the generator to power your home. The transfer switch has manual and automatic options and is recommended for both portable generator and backup generator. To learn more about switches, call your local Assurance Power Systems office.

4. Can I run a portable generator from indoors?

Don’t! Since portable generators run on gas and use oil, they emit carbon monoxide-containing emissions. Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless poison that can kill an entire family within minutes. Even when it rains or snows, you cannot operate a generator in a garage, parking lot or a covered porch - even with the door open. A portable generator should be located at least 15 feet away from your home, away from doors and windows. To make it safer for you and your family, make sure that you have carbon monoxide detectors installed in your home.


Final Thoughts

Always keep your electronics active with generators. We hope that after this article you will have more knowledge and experience to choose the best portable generators suitable for your needs. And the winner in all if there is a choice will include 2 candidates Honda EU2200i and WEN 56200i.

For more options here is our list of suggestions:

What do you think about this list? Please advise us about the best portable generator in your heart and mind.

Homeer Team
Homeer Team
Homeer.com was founded by Homeer Group, which owns many key products not only in the family but also in many fields of life. Homeer is known as the list of the best equipment and facilities, for example: Kitchen & Dining, Electronics, Furniture, Living... For busy people who want to save time and reduce the stress of finding the right product, the website is for you!