Best Portable Generator Review 2017

Last Updated: November 10, 2017

In our best portable generator review we found the following portable generators to be the best in 2017

by Generator Ratings
best portable generator
BEST PORTABLE GENERATOR REVIEW IMAGE SOURCE: HONDA

From the results of our detailed tests and reviews we have found the following 10 portable generators to be the best portable generator units on the market. Read our detailed review of each of the top 10 best portable generators below this video.

 

 

 

In the course of our best portable generator review we took a look at a number of elements. We looked at aspects such as design, features, pros and cons from a list of the 10 best portable generator units that are out there on the market. We also took a look at how long they run, what fuel they use and what specifications are featured on each machine.

When looking for the best portable generator for you, you will want to identify what each machine does, how it stands out from the competitors and any issues that you might encounter when using the machine. We looked at over a dozen machines and have tried to highlight all the aspects of each that you should look out for when making a decision about which of the best portable generator units to buy.

Whether you are looking for one of the best portable generator units to have as a stand by in your home or whether you want one to use when going on camping or holiday trips these best portable generator unit reviews should give you a clear idea of what is best for your specific needs.

 

Best Portable Generator Review

The best portable generator units on the market should operate for a decent length of time and provide your home with power using just a single tank of whatever fuel the machine uses. In our reviews, we identified two machines that will last almost up to 12 hours using a single tank of fuel. The best machines will shut down when no power is being used which allows you both to save on your fuel but most importantly on your overall spend every year.

When looking at the selection of of best portable generator units and deciding on a type to buy you should look at the various safety features that each possesses. There are a number of standard safety measures that all should have. The first would be if it features a ground fault circuit interrupter. This feature is specially designed to help prevent the risk of electrocution should the current travelling from the device take a change of path. You should also look out for a low oil shutdown feature which shows you that the machine will cease operation if the oil is running low, preventing your new machine from any potential long-term damage to its various parts. Other safety features include an automatic voltage regulator that allows the generator to maintain a consistent level of power. They also have circuit breakers in case an outlet becomes overloaded.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Honda

Our best portable generator reviews noted that the Honda EM5000S is a machine that you can rely on and is one that is safe to use. These are the two things you should be looking out for in the event of a sudden power outage in your home. You are using electricity which is a dangerous element and you want to be secure in your mind that the machine you purchase will provide you with backup power safely and efficiently.

This machine is also considered by our review team to be a sturdy product that will last the day to day uses it is exposed to. Whether you are using it for day to day home use or using it on a bigger contract job you can be safe in the knowledge that you will be purchasing a safe, reliable and quiet machine.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Mini Generators

When looking for the best portable generator you should also keep an eye out for their size and what is best for your particular usage needs. Most of the machines in our review were neat medium sized unit that can be easily transported or stored in your home. If you have a small living space, don’t need too much power or want to make sure the unit fits you home then the size of the best portable generators are a key factor to take into account. You have the option to consider purchasing what we call mini generators which are not too big for your home, don’t weigh a lot and use less fuel. However, because of the size of their fuel tanks they tend to run out of fuel easier and you will therefore need to have a backup.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: WEN

From our best portable generator reviews we identified the WEN PowerPro 56101 as a great option. It is light, it produces a lot of power and it is easy to store in your home. It uses a 1-gallon gas tank and will give you enough energy for over 5 hours using a half load. There are two outlets featured on the machine – one giving 120 V and the other with 12V. This portable generator is a very quiet machine and will only emit 60dB of noise when in operation. You will also find that this machine is very cost affordable and you should pick one up for just about $125 – worth noting considering the price of larger units.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Tri-Fuel Generators

When looking at the generator market you will notice that most machines use just one form of fuel. But there are machines out there that will use all three – gas, propane or natural gas. Having the option to use various fuel types can be very handy and give you flexibility. If you come across a Tri-fuel generator you might want to consider it from a flexibility perspective.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Sportsman Series

The Sportsman GENTRi9K Tri Fuel Generator is a great option as it scores very strongly in terms of the surge watts and the running watts it provides. Most importantly you are in control of the type of fuel you use with three different options. Other portable generators are powered exclusively by propane, natural gas or gasoline – the GENTRi9K can use all three, making it much handier in situations where your preferred fuel type is not available.

This machine has an excellent control panel and offers eight outlets which will allow you to connect a diverse range of electrical sources to the machine. It will also allow you to receive up to 10 hours of power when using gas or five hours of power when using propane on a half load.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Diesel Generators

If you decide to go for a diesel generator you should be aware of a couple of things. Diesel will give you better efficiency and will tend to operate much quieter than other machines. However, they do cost more to run.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Pulsar

One of the best portable generators using diesel is the The Pulsar 7000W. This is a portable unit that has a lot of benefits, with good surge and running wattage. The 4-gallon tank will last just a long as bigger tanks seen in other machines. It uses a 418 cc OHV engine which is a better design than the average piston engine. There are a number of electrical outlets offered and you will be able to connect most types of electrical items to the machine. It is slightly larger and heavier than others we reviewed so it will be a bit more difficult to transport or store in your home. As is the case with most diesel machines, it will cost you more to use but we consider it a superior product and one that might be worth the extra cost.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Camping Generators

If you are the outdoor type and tend to enjoy camping trips you will be aware that purchasing a strong portable generator is very important. Camping generators tend to be designed specifically for what they say they do and are not suitable for home use. They are light and easily transported but still give you enough power to keep most of your necessities operating on your camping trip.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Champion Power

The best camping generator we reviewed was the Champion Power 25537i 3100W Invertor Generator. This is a strongly designed hardy machine that is lightweight and transportable. It gives you a good amount of power and is a particularly quiet machine emitting only 58dB of sound. It uses gasoline and has a small 1.6-gallon tank that will last for about 8 hours using 25% of load. This means it is not ideal for a home backup supply but will be invaluable for camping trips, tailgating parties and daytrips.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Solar Generators

One of the latest innovations in portable generators are machines that operate by using the power of the sun via specially designed solar panels. These machines will take the suns energy and store power for use later on. They don’t recharge however when disconnected from the panels so you will need to ensure that the battery is fully charged before you head away. Most of the best of these types of generators will allow you to charge battery from a wall socket.

There are dozens of portable generator models to choose from. You should look out for weight, noise and power from each as well as what type of fuel they use. Also look out for the number of power sockets on each. Whatever your needs we hope these reviews will be of use.

 

 

1. Best Portable Generator Review: Honda EM5000S 

 

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In times when you have the need for help in the event of a sudden loss of electricity in your home the Honda EM5000S portable generator is a good option. It is reliable device, is safe to use and is a well-made machine that can cover every day wear and tear. It is also suitable for contract or home use. Our Honda EM5000S review identified a reliable, secure and quiet generator.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Specifications

Rated Watts4000
Surge Watts7000
Voltage120/240 Single-Phase
Tank Size6.2 Gallons
Fuel TypeGasoline
CC389cc
Ignition Type(s)Recoil & Electric
BatteryIncluded

This series of Honda generators have excellent power ratings. Starting at 4k watts and going as high as 10k watts, the user should identify the number of appliances that require powerful before choosing the best machine for you. If you are looking to cover a common family home, then the 5k generator will suffice. This unit also has a 7k watt surge rating.

The Honda EM5000S comes with a 6.2 gallon gas tank, not the biggest our reviews identified. We did note the fact that its 389cc engine means the Honda EM5000S portable generator is one of the most efficient of the non-inverting from those we reviewed.

Featuring a pull ignition as well as an electric ignition the Honda EM5000S offers a number of options. An electric ignition will save you back strain by powering the device with a touch of a button. There is a pull ignition option should you find your battery needs replacing.

The Honda EM5000S portable generator is not a noisy device. In fact, it does come in as one of the quieter emitting a noise level not too dissimilar to the average vacuum cleaner.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Convenience & Efficiency

Run-time @ 50% Load11.2 Hours
Noise Level72 dB
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes (iAVR)

Our Honda EM5000S review identified an intelligent automatic voltage regulation system. Voltage regulators are a feature of all power generators but not all of them feature the iAVR system which our reviewers considered to be a world apart. These features mean that your machine will feed a cleaner and more consistent power output to the various devices in your home. Any generator that is powered by an engine can occasionally see a fluctuation in terms of the power levels and this is something to be aware of.

The Honda EM5000S review shows that this unit’s iAVR system will eliminate any such power fluctuations by half that seen in other machines that don’t have such a system. A good feature but one of the reasons why this unit comes in that bit more expensive.

The Honda EM5000S’s circuit breakers will cut out overloading. It also has a low-oil shutdown which will automatically shut down the machine should you be out of oil, saving any potential damage to your device.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Safety & Warranty

Ground-Fault Circuit Interruption (GFCI)Yes
Low-oil ShutdownYes
Customer SupportYes
Warranty3 Years

One of the extra features also includes ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlets which are not seen in all other devices. This feature measures the current going to and from your various appliances and will remove power if the returning current drops. This is a very useful extra safety option and can be lifesaving in certain scenarios.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Design

Outletsx4 Household AC
x2 120v/240v
x1 12v DC
Weight232 Pounds
Length41.1 Inches
Width27.8 Inches
Height30.5 Inches

In terms of design this machine features a control panel with four 120-volt AC household plugs, two twist-locking 120/240-volt plugs for large appliances and a 12-volt DC outlet for charging a car battery.

The machine includes a voltage selector switch giving you the option to isolate voltage and maximizing the efficiency of the machine.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Summary

Our reviews found that the Honda EM5000S is one of the better machines of its kind. It runs for longer, it offers an electric start option, is not noisy and is extremely safe. This is a device that will work well in both emergency and everyday scenarios reliably and safely.

 

 

2. Best Portable Generator Review: Yamaha EF5500DE

 

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The Yamaha EF5500DE will save you money on your fuel bill and is considered to be a very safe device to use. It also has a user friendly control panel that will work well in emergency scenarios or on large sites.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Specifications

Rated Watts4500
Surge Watts5500
Voltage120/240 Single-Phase
Tank Size6.9 Gallons
Fuel TypeGasoline
CC358cc
Ignition Type(s)Electric
BatteryIncluded

Our Yamaha EF5500DE review noted that the engine on this machine is extremely efficient and as a gas generator will work well in an emergency. You will find that you will have a nine-hour operation time if using a full load or a 12-hour operation time with a half load. The Yamaha EF5500DE portable generator has an automatic idle setting that will ensure your engine goes into wind down mode if power is not being used. This feature will save you on operation costs and allowing the machine to perform efficiently when being used in different ways over the course of a day.

The Yamaha EF5500DE is not perfect. Our Yamaha EF5500DE review noted the fact that is doesn’t feature a very high surge power rating. The machine will operate on 4.5k watts but unfortunately will only handle surges up to an extra 1k watts. Surges feature most when a machine is kicking into action. When in operation most electric motors will require 2 to four times the amount of wattage in startup mode. To explain a bit more – a 500-watt appliance could require 1,000 to 2,000 watts at startup. For comparison, the best portable generator has a surge increase of 2,000 watts. The average surge increase is 1,250 watts.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Safety & Warranty

Ground-Fault Circuit Interruption (GFCI)Yes
Low-oil ShutdownYes
Customer SupportYes
Warranty3 Years

The Yamaha EF5500DE portable generator offers a useful safety feature in the GFCI protection for the outlets you use. This ground-fault circuit interrupter is a circuit breaker that enable the machine to measure the level of AC come to and going from the generator and the various appliances that are being powered.

The Yamaha EF5500DE counteracts any risk of electrocution by monitoring if the returning current has diminished. If the current diminishes then it means that it has found some other route to earth. If this happens in the Yamaha EF5500DE portable generator the GCFI will kick into action and shut off the power supply.

Our Yamaha EF5500DE review identified a very useful extra safety addition. The generator has a sensor installed that will shut the machine’s engine down should the oil levels get too low. This will both save your machine from any long term damage and ensure that you will have a good and reliable power source in the event of a power cut.

 

 Best Portable Generator Review: Convenience & Efficiency

Run-time @ 50% Load12 Hours
Noise Level74.1 dB
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes

It is not a noisy unit but not the best performer in term of the noise levels it produces. It will operate at a decibel level of 74.1 dB, which is average. The best generators in terms of noise operate at 71 dB, which is about the volume of a vacuum cleaner.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Design

Outletsx4 Household
x2 120v/240v
Weight234 Pounds
Length29.1 Inches
Width28.4 Inches
Height31.5 Inches

This machine has a number of great control features on its panel and has four household outlets and two 120/240 volt outlets. It also has a voltage selector that will enable you to isolate the necessary voltage you require. If you are only intending to power the household outlets you can easily choose the 120 volt setting allowing you to ensure you are using an appropriate current and one that is not likely to damage any of your appliances.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Summary

Our reviews noted that this machine is one of the better of its kind on the market because it is considered both efficient, safe and extremely reliable. It will run for up to 12 hours without burning excess fuel and is a very clean unit in terms of the power it produces. We did note the lack of extra surge power, however.

 

 

3. Best Portable Generator Review: Sportsman GENTRi9K 

 

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Best Portable Generator Review: Specifications

Rated Watts7200
Surge Watts9000
Voltage120/240 Single-Phase
Tank Size7.4 Gallons
Fuel TypeGasoline, Gas & Propane
CC420cc
Ignition Type(s)Recoil & Electric
BatteryNot Included

The Sportsman GENTRi9K portable Generator is a very powerful machine that can give an output of 9k surge watts as well as 7.2k running watts of power. It allows you also to make a decision about what form of fuel you wish to use to operate the device. Most other generators would only be powered by either gas, gasoline or propane. However, the Sportsman Series GENTRi9K review identified that this machine can use any of all of the above. This means you will never be stuck should one of the fuel sources be unavailable.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Convenience & Efficiency

Run-time @ 50% Load10 Hours
Noise Level58 dB
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes

The Sportsman GENTRi9K portable Generator is operated by a four stroke engine which offers 15-horsepower and 420cc. This engine will generate 9k surge watts as well as 7.2k continuous running watts. Explained a bit more clearly, this is enough power to allow you to power a full RV or household gadgets like fridges and TVs or power tool. It is therefore and excellent choice if you need a strong machine for camping trips, on sites or for emergency scenarios where you may have experienced a sudden power outage. As long as you have fuel, you’ll be able to keep your devices and appliances running.

You can start the machine two ways. There is an electric key start up option or you also have the recoil cord (like the cord you find on a lawnmower). The electric key is your primary way to start generating power. If the key doesn’t work, you revert to the recoil cord.

The Sportsman Series GENTRi9K review noted that the machine has 7.4-gallon fuel tank for gasoline. This should be sufficient for you to run the machine for up to 10 hours working with a 50% load. Do note that gas used on the machines should be at least 87 octane. There is also the option to use a standard propane tank which can be connected directly to the Sportsman Series GENTRi9K. Using this option, you will get use for about 5 hours on a 50% load You can also connect it to a natural gas line that will provide unlimited power as long as the gas flows.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Convenience & Efficiency

Ground-Fault Circuit Interruption (GFCI)No
Low-oil ShutdownYes
Customer SupportYes
Warranty3 Years

The Sportsman Series GENTRi9K has a handy control panel that offers 8 different power outlets meaning you the ability to connect a number of different RVs or appliances. We consider this machine to be extremely strong in terms of efficiency. It will deliver approximately 10 hours of power in gas mode and up to five hours of use from using propane on a 50% load. If the Sportsman Series GENTRi9K is connected to a natural gas supply it will run for a long, long time.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Design

Outletsx4 Household AC
x1 120v/240v DC
x1 12v DC
x1 120v RV Twist Lock
Weight200 Pounds
Length28.8 Inches
Width22.2 Inches
Height33.2 Inches

The Sportsman Series GENTRi9K review noted that it should offer all the outlets that you would need at any time. However, you are also offered four 120 volt outlets. These are almost the same as those you find in your home and therefore you can attach any devices directly to the machine. There is also a 12-volt DC outlet (a little bit like the average car cigarette lighter). You will also get a 120/240V outlet for large appliances and a 120V twist lock outlet that can power your RV meaning this Sportsman GENTRi9K portable Generator is a very versatile machine.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Summary

The Sportsman Series GENTRi9K will allow you to keep the power running in the event of a power cut or if you want to divert some power away from your normal supply source. This machine will work well for you, will efficiently supply you with power and is considered to be quite safe to use.

 

 

4. Best Portable Generator Review: Westinghouse WH5500 

 

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The Westinghouse WH5500 is a portable machine that offers power ratings that can come in at a range of 3.2k watts to 10k watts. If you are a family member hoping to have a backup device for your home, you will probably want to look at a generator with a wattage of 5k. This would be sufficient power to keep your average home powered should you be hit will a sudden power outage. The usual home appliances such as heaters, lights, kitchen appliances, water pumps or laptops and TVs will be sufficiently powered with a 5k wattage and the Westinghouse WH5500 portable generator will be a good option.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Specifications

Rated Watts5500
Surge Watts6750
Voltage120/240 Single-Phase
Tank Size6.6 Gallons
Fuel TypeGasoline
CC357cc OHV
Ignition Type(s)Electric
BatteryIncluded

The Westinghouse WH5500 review showed that it features 5.5k running watts and also has a surge rating of 6.75k watts. The surge rating accounts for starting wattage required by appliances with electric motors because these can often require two to four times their normal wattage at startup.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Convenience & Efficiency

Run-time @ 50% Load14 Hours
Noise Level71 dB
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes

The Westinghouse WH5500 was identified as one of the better performing portable generators on the market. This is partly down to the fact that it boasts a powerful 14 hour running time on a 50% load and uses a relatively small (6.6 gallon) tank. The Westinghouse WH5500 portable generator came in as the most efficient machine out of all those we reviewed.

It is very important that you take efficiency into account as access to fuel will always be an issue and you don’t want your generator to cut out when there is no power at home. You will only see more efficient machines in the shape of inverters, but these are generally only use for scenarios that require smaller wattages. You won’t have to refuel the Westinghouse WH5500 too often and we consider this machine to the best in terms of efficiency.

Our Westinghouse WH5500 review noted the fact that this machine is a very strong performer in terms of the levels of noise it emits. Looking at the decibel level you will only see about 71 decibels emitted from this machine which makes it come up at the top of your review list when it comes to noise. You can compare the noise level of the Westinghouse WH5500 portable generator as akin to your average vacuum cleaner, or a relatively mid-level conversation. It certainly is not a machine that will cause disruption to your neighbors.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Safety & Warranty

Ground-Fault Circuit Interruption (GFCI)No
Low-oil ShutdownYes
Customer SupportYes
Warranty3 Years

One of the flaws seen in our Westinghouse WH5500 review is the fact that it does not offer a ground-fault circuit interrupter protection feature. It does offer a circuit breaker protection which will allow the generator to be protected as well as the appliances you are hoping to power. It won’t protect you however from the risk of electrocution should the direction of the current be diverted. This is dangerous. For example, if you drop a tool in a puddle, the alternating current can leave the tool and electrocute you because the water provides an alternate path. The GFCI is able to detect this and stop the current so that you aren’t electrocuted.

The company offers great levels of customer support services. All gas generators we reviewed come with the industry leading three-year warranty. You will also receive easy to use manuals, online or video tutorials as well as a useful FAQ section on the website that will answer any potential questions you may have about your machine.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Design

Outletsx4 Household AC
x1 120v/240v DC
x1 12v DC
x1 120v RV Twist Lock
Weight168 Pounds
Length28.75 Inches
Width27.5 Inches
Height26 Inches

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Summary

Our reviews show that the Westinghouse portable generator is a very quiet machine when in operation, it is the most efficient from all our reviews and has an excellent running time. We did note the lack of GFCI protection, however, which may be something you are looking for.

 

 

5. Best Portable Generator Review: Champion Power 75537i

 

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Best Portable Generator Review: Specifications

Rated Watts2800
Surge Watts3100
Voltage120/240 Single-Phase
Tank Size1.6 Gallons
Fuel TypeGasoline
CC171cc
Ignition Type(s)Recoil & Electric
BatteryIncluded

The Champion Power 75537i portable generator is a very quiet machine when in operation and it will only emit 58 decibels of sound. It is powered by gasoline and has a decent sized tank at 1.6 gallons meaning it will give you a use time of about 8 hours when being operated at a 25% load.

The Champion Power 75537i review did identify that it will not be a good choice for general home use but it is a very good option for camping trips or for one-off outdoor events like home garden parties or days away.

The Champion Power 75537i portable generator uses a 171cc, four stroke OHV engine that uses a single cylinder. It produces 2,800 running watts and 3,100 starting watts. This level of power will mean the machine will power basic small household items such as laptop computers, small TVs, portable devices and smaller tools that require power.

Best Portable Generator Review: Convenience & Efficiency

Run-time @ 50% Load12 Hours
Noise Level58 dB
Automatic Voltage RegulationNo

The Champion Power 75537i will keep your devices like smartphones and tablets charged and working. It’s not designed to power larger electrical devices, and is most suitable for basic requirements. Should you need a more powerful device check out some of the other machines we reviewed here.

The Champion Power 75537i portable generator fuel tank holds 1.6 gallons of gasoline. This will last for about eight hours on a 25 percent load. You might want to consider a fuel back-up if you need to use the device for prolonged periods.

For a small portable unit, you would expect it to be quiet and this is the case. The Champion Power 75537i puts out about 58dB. It’s one of the quietest generators, and perfect for a camping trip.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Design

Outletsx2 Household AC
x1 12v DC
x1 120v RV Twist Lock
Weight94.8 Pounds
Length24.4 Inches
Width14.3 Inches
Height18.3 Inches

The Champion Power 75537i review found that the machine’s control panel will offer a number of plugin choices. There are two 120 volt outlets as well as a 12V DC outlet and a single RV ready socket. Not a huge range of options but should be suffice for the purposes this machine is designed for.

This machine also offers a wireless remote start, with an 80ft range, a handy option on camping trips. Returning from a hike, you could start your generator remotely and have it operating as you reach camp.

It is a very light and easily transported machine which makes it perfect for a camping trip. Weighing 96 pounds, it can easily lifted into and out of a car. Its handles and wheels give extra mobility, and it’s small enough to fit in any trunk.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Safety & Warranty

Ground-Fault Circuit Interruption (GFCI)No
Low-oil ShutdownYes
Customer SupportYes
Warranty3 Years

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Summary

The Champion Power 25537i 3100W Invertor is the perfect portable generator for camping. It’s relatively light and easily packed. Its tank is small but holds enough fuel to keep the absolute necessities going.

 

 

6. Best Portable Generator Review: Briggs & Stratton Home Series 5000

 

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Best Portable Generator Review: Specifications

Rated Watts5000
Surge Watts6200
Voltage120/240 Single-Phase
Tank Size5 Gallons
Fuel TypeGasoline
CC342cc
Ignition Type(s)Recoil & Electric
BatteryIncluded

The Briggs & Stratton Home Series 5000 portable generators are designed to power the general appliances in your home should you be affected by a power outage. The Briggs & Stratton Home Series 5000 portable generator we reviewed was a 5k watt generator.

This is the average size generator that is required to power a family home. It will keep items such as home computers, washing machines and other devices running until power is restored.

The Briggs & Stratton Home Series 5000 review identified that this machine uses a Power Surge alternator which will offer 25 percent more wattage to cope with a power surge than many of the other generators we looked at in out review. This generator can cope with a surge power of more than 6.2k watts for almost 10 seconds.

This is a valuable feature and something that is often overlooked. Surge wattage is a very important function for any generators that start with electric motors. When starting these machines can use four times the wattage than when operating in a normal setting.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Convenience & Efficiency

Run-time @ 50% Load10 Hours
Noise Level58 dB
Automatic Voltage RegulationNo

The Briggs & Stratton Home Series 5000 portable generator uses a 342cc motor and is part of the 1650 series of motors designed by the company. The 5-gallon fuel tank cab last for up to 10 hours (based on using a 50 percent load).

What this means is that the Briggs & Stratton Home Series 5000 is one of the most efficient gas generators on the market and if you are looking for a product that will save you money in the long run, it may be a good option. It’s fuel efficient too, so you won’t be stressing out at times when fuel might be difficult to obtain.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Design

Outletsx4 Household AC
x1 120v/240v DC
Weight181 Pounds
Length28.7 Inches
Width18.4 Inches
Height23.8 Inches

The Briggs & Stratton Home Series 5000 review identified that the biggest flaw with the machine is the lack of low-oil shutdown protection. This feature is a special sensor that will shut the machine down when it identifies that oil is running low. The function will prevent part of the machine from becoming damaged. The best generators from our review all have this feature. Without it you must keep tabs on the oil levels always or run the risk of damaging your machine.

The Briggs & Stratton Home Series 5000 also has an hour meter on the control panel to keep track of how many hours it operates so that you know when to change the oil and have it serviced.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Safety & Warranty

Ground-Fault Circuit Interruption (GFCI)No
Low-oil ShutdownNo
Customer SupportYes
Warranty2 Years

The Briggs & Stratton Home Series 5000 portable generator like all Briggs and Stratton products, comes with a really excellent level of customer support offerings. Our Briggs & Stratton Home Series 5000 review noted that there is an industry leading warranty offered with these machines. There are also a wide range of resources to ensure that you are making the most of your machine. There are a number of online tutorials which will guide you in areas of maintenance and operation.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Summary

An FAQ page on the company’s website is of great assistance in determining your anticipated wattage level. The page also offers a downloadable manual with all the info you will need about your machine.

A good choice.

 

 

7. Best Portable Generator Review: WEN PowerPro 56101 

 

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Best Portable Generator Review: Specifications

Rated Watts900
Surge Watts1000
Voltage120v Single-Phase
Tank Size1 Gallon
Fuel TypeGasoline
CC63cc
Ignition Type(s)Electric
BatteryIncluded

There are a number of reasons why our review team considered the WEN PowerPro 56101 to be one of the better portable generators on the market. Our WEN PowerPro 56101 review shows that it’s not too big, and is powerful for its size. The unit has a 1 gallon gas tank. It can operate for almost 5 hours using a half load. There are also two outlets featured on the generator – a 120V and a 12V.

The WEN PowerPro 56101 portable generator is certainly not a noisy machine. In fact, it is extremely quiet emitting only 60 db of noise when operating. We also considered this unit to be really affordable coming in at just about $125. Considering other generators can cost over ten times that it’s not bad going.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Convenience & Efficiency

Run-time @ 50% Load5 Hours
Noise Level60 dB
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes

The WEN PowerPro 56101 portable generator’s 1-gallon fuel tank uses regular unleaded gasoline. Using a half-load, the machine provides 1000 surge watts and 900 rated watts lasting about five hours. Anything beyond a half-load will increase the generator’s fuel consumption rate and lessen the amount of time it provides power.

Best Portable Generator Review: Design

Outletsx1 Household AC
x1 12v DC
Weight39.68 Pounds
Length13.5 Inches
Width12 Inches
Height14 Inches

The WEN PowerPro 56101 is a small machine with only two power outlets offered. The 120V and 12V outlets will power smaller household items but not larger devices like dishwashers or large refrigerators.

This is a quiet, neat and light machine. You could easily hold a conversation while the generator is in operation. It won’t be a nuisance while you try to sleep on a camping trip. If you can make do with a portable generator the size of this, then you should consider it.

The WEN PowerPro 56101 is one of the cheapest portable generators on the market. The price does vary but is always going to be very affordable coming in at no more than $150. Other units out there can cost you more than $1500 so you really are getting value for money.

Our WEN PowerPro 56101 review takes a number of factors into account. The key selling point has got to be how light and neatly designed it is. Looking at it you would think it was just a small box. Weighing just 35 pounds, it’s easy to move around and bring in the car for camping trips. The WEN PowerPro 56101 has a neat little handle on top adding to the convenience of moving it about.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Safety & Warranty

Ground-Fault Circuit Interruption (GFCI)No
Low-oil ShutdownNo
Customer SupportYes
Warranty3 Years

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Summary

If you want a portable generator for smaller electrical items, then you really should consider the WEN PowerPro 56101. You will find that it provides you with all the power you need without costing you a fortune. The power it puts out has decent time duration, and its neat, light design makes it extremley portable.

Overall, we recommend this machine if you want one of the best portable generator units for domestic use.

 

 

8. Best Portable Generator Review: Generac GP5500

 

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Best Portable Generator Review: Specifications

Rated Watts5500
Surge Watts6875
Voltage120v/240v Single-Phase
Tank Size6.7 Gallon
Fuel TypeGasoline
CC389cc OHV
Ignition Type(s)Recoil
BatteryNot Included

The Generac GP550 comes with a number of extra functions that will come in really handy to the user. Its OHV engine works with gasoline, providing a long lasting fuel supply. It’s also very efficient and overall is a well built, study and robust device. It has numerous outlets enabling you to power a range of devices for a good length of time.

It’s powerful too, producing over 6.8k watts when starting and 5.5k watts when operating. This is easily one of the best portable generator units, suitable for any domestic requirements.

There are a number of reasons why our Generac GP5500 review team loved the OHV engine on this machine. One of the main reasons is the greater emphasis on the Generac GP5500’s cylinder head than its flathead engine. This is not too dissimilar to the conventional piston engine. This design ingenuity means that while the engine is smaller, it can perform better and last longer than others. This OHV engine also has splash lubrication addition, so the life of the generator will be longer than most.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Convenience & Efficiency

Run-time @ 50% Load10 Hours
Noise Level71 dB
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes

The Generac GP5500 review team identified a 7.2 gallon tank which uses gasoline. This helps to power your home for up to 10 hours using a 50 percent load. Therefore, it is one of the longer lasting machines that we reviewed. There are more expensive options, but for its size, this machine has an excellent run time. It is well worth considering.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Design

Outletsx5 120/240v Household
Weight180 Pounds
Length33.5 Inches
Width26.5 Inches
Height27.5 Inches

The Generac GP5500 portable generator is designed in such a way as to offer a number of extra benefits. It is manufactured with reinforced steel, and so is durable, strong and heavy duty. The wheels of the Generac GP5500 are never-flat and so they will last for a long time. Fold-down handles make the generator moveable and easily stored in your home.

The Generac GP5500 puts out an impressive 6,875 starting watts and 5,500 running watts. This is sufficient to power smaller items and largers items such as power tools, refrigerators and air conditioners. You can even use this portable generator to power an RV or provide backup power to your home.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Safety & Warranty

Ground-Fault Circuit Interruption (GFCI)Yes
Low-oil ShutdownYes
Customer SupportYes
Warranty3 Years

If you need more wattage you might want to consider a larger and more expensive generator. However, the Generac GP5500 is a great choice in terms of value and power for your home.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Summary

The Generac GP550 is one of the best portable generator units for the home. It is designed well, is sturdy, produces enough power, and is portable enough for a variety of conditions. Well worth thinking about.

 

 

9. Best Portable Generator Review: Honeywell 5500 

 

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Best Portable Generator Review: Specifications

Rated Watts5500
Surge Watts6875
Voltage120v/240v Single-Phase
Tank Size5.8 Gallon
Fuel TypeGasoline
CC389cc OHV
Ignition Type(s)Recoil & Electric
BatteryIncluded

The Honeywell 5500 portable generator is part of a range of generators that have power ratings of in between 3,250 to 7,500 watts. It should be noted that the average home will likely need an output of 5,000 watts. We therefore chose to review the Honeywell 5500. This generator has running wattage of 5,500w and a surge rating of 6,875w for up to 10 seconds. The medium sized Honeywell 5500 will fit nicely in a shed, bed of a pickup truck or a car trunk.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Convenience & Efficiency

Run-time @ 50% Load14 Hours
Noise Level68.5 dB
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes

Our Honeywell 5500 review team noted a flaw with the machine. It identified that the engine is not the most efficient on the market. The 389cc overhead valve engine and 5.8-gallon fuel tank provide 9.1hs running time on a 50% power load.

The best portable generators tend to run for up to 14 hours on a 50% load. Therefore, the Honeywell 5500 will only work well in short term scenarios such as a temporary power cut. If you’re hit by longer outages, you’ll need fuel backup in order to ensure sufficient power for your appliances.

The Honeywell 5500 electric start function is a standout feature. However a recoil rope is included if the machine has not been used for some time and the battery dies.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Design

Outletsx4 Household
x1 120/240v
Weight185 Pounds
Length29.8 Inches
Width28.75 Inches
Height26.75 Inches

The Honeywell 5500 portable generator has a control panel that is nicely designed and offer a few handy controls. It also offers four 120-volt plugs (similar to all the best generators) and one 120/240-volt twist-locking plug for large appliances. You will need to reset circuit breakers should the outlet be overloaded but this shouldn’t be a major concern.

The Honeywell 5500 review revealed a lack of safety elements that are seen in other machines. It doesn’t have a spark arrestor, which prevents sparks from exiting the exhaust and starting a fire.

Also, the Honeywell 5500 portable generator doesn’t offer never-flat tyres available on other models. Therefore, its tyres may become flat if the generator is not in use for a long time. This will cause trouble if you need to move the machine around.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Safety & Warranty

Ground-Fault Circuit Interruption (GFCI)No
Low-oil ShutdownYes
Customer SupportYes
Warranty3 Years

This machine also doesn’t feature a GFCI protection, which shows that a unit is safe to use. This system protects from electrocution if the current coming from your portable generator is diverted to an alternate path. This might be a key factor when it comes your decision on whether to purchase this machine.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Summary

Made by Generac, Honeywell portable generators are nicely designed products. They do the job in providing power, but this generator in particular uses more fuel than others we reviewed.

 

 

10. Best Portable Generator Review: Pulsar PG7000D 7,000W

 

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Best Portable Generator Review: Specifications

Rated Watts5500
Surge Watts7000
Voltage120v/240v Single-Phase
Tank Size4 Gallon
Fuel TypeGas, Gasoline & Diesel
CC418cc OHV
Ignition Type(s)Recoil & Electric
BatteryIncluded

The Pulsar PG7000W is one of the best portable generators. It boasts several features that might swing it in terms of your choice. It is a powerful machine, putting out 7k peak watts and 5.5k running watts. Its 4 gallon fuel tank, not as big as some others, lasts longer when in operation.

The 418cc OHV engine is better that a normal piston engine. Five outlets of various types provide great scope for types of electrical items you can power. While this machine still ranks as a portable unit, it is not as easy to move around than others reviewed. It is bigger, heavier and more difficult to transport around your home.

Our team also noted that it is more expensive than gasoline or natural gas models. However, it’s a superior product and the Pulsar PG7000W is worth the expense.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Convenience & Efficiency

Run-time @ 50% Load9.5 Hours
Noise Level70 dB
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes

The Pulsar PG7000W portable generator produces a very fine level of electricity when you need it most. Working at its hardest you will find that it generates up to 7k watts. Whatever about a home this is actually enough power to keep your average job site powered. It is also fairly suitable for a camping trip (despite it being slightly more difficult to move about).

The fuel tank on this Pulsar PG7000W is only 4 gallons, one of the smallest tanks our team assessed. And the Pulsar PG7000W’s OHV engine offer several advantages over the piston engines on gasoline and natural gas models.

This portable generator will be more efficient when it comes to the amount of fuel that is used.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Design

Outletsx2 Household
x1 120v Twist
x1 120/240v Twist
x1 12v DC
Weight353 Pounds
Length22 Inches
Width32.5 Inches
Height38 Inches

The Pulsar PG7000W review team noted that the outlets cover almost every requirements. It has two 120V outlets, two twist outlets (for 120V and 120/240V), and one 12V 8.3-amp outlet. The latter is very handy if  you have USB powered devices because you can plug in a USB adapter.

One fact that can’t be overcome is the fact that machines such as these do make noise. However, the Pulsar 7000W features noise reduction technology that mutes the noise to below 70 dB. It’s not the quietest machine, but it won’t be a nuisance if you are trying to sleep.

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Safety & Warranty

Ground-Fault Circuit Interruption (GFCI)Yes
Low-oil ShutdownYes
Customer SupportYes
Warranty2 Years

 

Best Portable Generator Review: Summary

This is one of the best portable generator units, but it’s not as easy to move about as others. In terms of design it is bigger and bulkier than others we reviewed. However, we do consider this machine to be a reasonably good choice in the world of portable generators. It will provide sufficient power to keep your various home devices and appliances running during a power outage. Not the worst choice and worth considering. Do remember that it isn’t the easiest to move about, however.

 

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