Best Portable Generator Reviews

Were you recently affected by a power outage? Or perhaps you are looking for the portable generator reviews to find out which one is the best for construction, RV, boat or tailgating?

No matter where are you going to use your generator, there are some models which definitely stand out and can be often used in a wide array of settings.

In the following buying guide, I will introduce you to some of the best generators on sale in the US. I have selected 10 models which in my humble opinion can truly compete for the title of the top-rated portable generator.

Have a look at the table below for the comparison of their features and specifications.

10 Top Rated Portable Generators 2019

Generator Wattage Shipping
Weight
(lbs)
Price Our
Rating
Our
Review

wh6500

Westinghouse WGen7500 7500 211 Check Price 9/10 Click to Read

champion 46539

Champion 46539 4000 140 Check Price 8.7/10 Click to Read

duromax xp4000s

Duromax XP4000S 4000 90 Check Price 8.7/10 Click to Read

duromax xp4400e

Duromax XP4400E 4400 116 Check Price 8.5/10 Click to Read

generac 6866 iq2000

Generac 6866 iQ2000 1600 51.1 Check Price 8.4/10 Click to Read

Duromax XP10000E

Duromax XP10000E 10000 249 Check Price 8.3/10 Click to Read

Champion 41135

Champion 41135 6800 182 Check Price 8.3 Click to Read

Durostar DS4000S

Durostar DS4000S 4000 92.4 Check Price 8.2/10 Click to Read

Duromax XP4850EH

Duromax XP4850EH Dual Fuel (Propane/Gas) 3850 131.7 Check Price 8/10 Click to Read

generac-5982

Generac 5982 3250 118 Check Price 7.9/10 Click to Read

Portable Generator Reviews – The Top 10

1. The Winner – Westinghouse WGen7500

westinghouse wh6500 portable generator

Westinghouse WGen7500 fully deserves the title of the best portable generator on the market. It is a highly versatile unit suitable for a variety of situations. It is an excellent choice for commercial uses such as construction, repair or automotive services.

It is also great as an emergency power supply for households. This means that you can save money by purchasing just this generator alone and use it both at home and work if you need to.

Westinghouse has earned its well-deserved reputation as one of the most reliable producers of generators and other electric appliances in the US. Being a 100% American company, Westinghouse implements the strictest quality standards for its products, surpassing many of the Chinese based competitors flooding the market.

WGen7500 is a great example of how a great quality product offered at a still highly competitive price. You can read more about some of its best features in my full review of WGen7500 here.

Rated at 7500 running watts this generator is a highly versatile choice. While it is still not enough for it to be a full whole house backup power solution, it can definitely handle the most important devices such as lighting, refrigerators, heaters etc.

7500 watts is more than enough to make it a viable choice for construction sites. It has 6 power outlets (2 of them twistable) making it possible to plug in numerous electric tools at once.


PROS
  • Great fuel efficiency
  • Relatively quiet for its wattage
  • Good value for money
  • Easy to operate
  • Suitable for a variety of uses
  • Sturdy design
CONS
  • A bit heavy
  • Might be still a bit too noisy for leisure activities – inverter generators are the preferred choice.

Click to Buy It on Amazon


2. Runner Up – Champion Power Equipment 46539 4000 Watt

Champion Power Equipment 46539Champion Power Equipment 46539 is an optimal choice for small businesses and construction.

Rated at 4000 starting watts and 3500 running watts it provides enough power to run tools like drills, belt sanders, bench grinders or circular saws.

It is very fuel efficient. In fact, one refueling of its 3,8 gallon tank of gas is enough to let it run up to 12 hours at 50% load.

It is CARB compliant meaning that if you are in based in California you can rest assured you will be able to use it without problems.

It has some great essential features such as automatic low oil shutoff and electric start. You can even use the electric remote control to turn it on/off.

It is also relatively easy to move, meaning you won’t have to struggle too much when loading it on your car.

Aside from work-related applications Champion 46539 is also a good choice for boats and tailgating.

It has a built-in RV receptacle which means you can also totally use it with your RV.

Click here to read my full review of this generator.


PROS
  • CARB compliant
  • Water resistant (unless you plan to run it in heavy rain for a long time which is NEVER a good idea)
  • 20-second power delay
  • Electric startup (pull start lever also available in case the battery dies)
  • Reliable design
CONS
  • No 240 volt outlet
  • Not powerful enough for tools like welders or air compressors (1 HP)

Click To See Customers
Reviews on Amazon


3. High Quality Generator with Air Cooled Engine – Duromax XP4000S

DuroMax XP4000S  is one of the mostDuromax XP4000s Air Cooled Portable Generator reliable generators on the market in the 3000 – 6000 wattage range. It is a very attractive option for jobsites providing just enough power to supply numerous electrical tools.

You can safely use it with an RV. However, note that since it’s rated at 4000 surge and 3500 running watts it cannot be treated as a comprehensive portable power solution.

You will find it easy to start and operate thanks to the E-Z 1-Pull Recoil Cord.

It has a heavy duty frame providing the necessary protection from falls and some weather elements.

It has a maximum run time of 8 hours @ 50% maximum output.

Thanks to a built-in muffler it is not very noisy.

You won’t have to worry about the engine damage resulting from low oil levels. The generator will automatically shut down itself thanks to its low oil shut-off mechanism. You can read more about it and some other interesting features of Duromax XP4000S here.

Another great news is that residents of all US states can legally use it – Duromax XP4000S is both EPA and CARB compliant.


PROS
  • Air cooled sturdy engine
  • Relatively quiet
  • EPA and CARB compliant
  • Super easy to start and use
  • Good technical support available
CONS
Despite all the great features this generator has, it has some glitches that might be annoying.
  • The wheels have to be purchased separately.

Click to Get it On Amazon Now


4. Great Value for Money – DuroMax XP4400E 4,400 Watt 7.0 HP OHV

While being significantly cheaperDuromax XP4400E portable generator than some of its competitors, Duromax XP4400E does it job very well.

Just like its cousin XP4000S it provides 3500 running watts – enough for jobsites requiring the use of such tools as grinders, drills or reciprocating saws.

The difference here is the higher surge wattage – it basically means the number of watts a plugged device needs when started. Pay attention to this number – it can often be significantly higher than its demand for running power.

Air compressors (1HP) are one such device requiring approx 4400 starting (surge) watts and the ongoing wattage of only 1600.

Duromax XP4400E provides just enough power to cater to one such air compressor.

Unfortunately, unlike XP4000S this generator is NOT CARB compliant.

On plus side XP4400E has a 4-gallon tank allowing for the total run time of around 8 hours on half load before it runs empty.

This generator has got several different types of outlets: 2 x 120V, 1 x 120/240V, 1 x 12V utility outlet and 1 x 30 amp twist-lock. These are definitely more than enough to cater to different kinds of appliances as well as RV.

Read more about the characteristics of Duromax XP4400E here


PROS
  • Cheap
  • Long running time
  • Easy to use
  • Several various types of outlets
CONS
  • Non-CARB Compliant – NOT FOR SALE in California
  • Oil dripping may rarely occur

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5. A Very Quiet Inverter Generator – Generac 6866 IQ2000

If noise levels and portability are your primary criteriaGenerac6866 when looking for a portable generator than inverter generators are the ones you should primarily consider.

Generac 6866 IQ2000 is one such generator, offering all major advantages of inverter technology such as the presence of an alternator which converts output power from DC to AC.

Just like other quality inverters, it is also very quiet. This makes it a preferred choice for camping, RV and tailgating.

You can regulate its OHV engine by choosing from one of the 3 settings to balance the performance and power saving.

Smart LED dashboard is a handy feature allowing you to monitor things like wattage used of fuel levels easily.

While 2000 watts is certainly not a huge amount of power, you can double this by connecting two inverter generators together. (REMEMBER: they should preferably be the same models or at least have the exact same wattage!)


PROS
  • Very quiet
  • Modern design
  • Intuitive use
  • Lightweight
CONS
  • Just like other inverters it cannot be used to power multiple major devices at a time

 

Click to Read More & Buy It on Amazon


6. A Powerful Choice- DuroMax XP10000E 10,000 Watt

At 10000 running watts Duromax Xp10000Eduromax xp 10000 portable generator is the most powerful generator on this list.

It has more than enough wattage to handle multiple large household appliances and high amperage electric tools.

Thanks to a dual fuel technology it can operate both on gas and propane. The choice is yours which one you prefer to use.

Worrying that such powerful portable generator might not necessarily be the most environmental choice? No reasons for concerns at all. Duromax XP10000E is both EPA and CARB compliant meaning that even the residents of California – the state (in)famous for its strict environmental protection laws can use this generator.

An interesting feature of this model is an Idle Control mechanism. It will automatically detect whenever the generator is not used and lower its engine’s RPM (revolutions per minute). This feature alone can mean huge potential savings in the amount of fuel consumed.

If you are looking for a whole house backup power solution, XP10000E is as close as it gets to be a viable alternative for much more expensive and less flexible standby generators. 10000 running watts will give you peace of mind in emergencies and provide enough power for most of the large appliances in your home.

Read more detailed info about Duromax XP10000E here.


PROS
  • Very durable and powerful
  • Great alternative to bulky standby generators
  • Idle Control mechanism is a truly awesome feature
  • Easy to clean – an often under-looked feature
  • CARB and EPA compliant
CONS
  • It is quite bulky and takes some elbow grease to move
  • As you can probably guess by now – it is not particularly cheap

Click to Buy It Now on Amazon


7. Champion Power Equipment 41135 6800-watt 338CC

Champion Power Equipment 41135 generatorChampion 41135 is indeed a very well designed solid portable generator.

It comes highly recommended for those who are looking for a generator for a jobsite. General contractors and construction workers are going to like this model a lot.

That’s because with its 6800 rated watts it is definitely strong enough to power multiple large work tools such as welders, air compressors, circular saws and so on. At the same time, it still maintains the best feature of portable generators – you can move it from one place to another without major hassle.

While I generally like Westinghouse Wgen7500 more, Champion 41135 makes a good alternative for a slightly lower price tag.

This particularly applies to Californians – this generator is fully CARB compliant.

You can read the detailed Champion 41135 review here.


PROS
  • Enough power to supply multiple electric tools
  • Easy to start maintain
  • CARB compliant
  • Not very expensive
CONS
  • It is quite noisy – not very suitable for leisure use

Get It Now on Amazon


8. An Affordable Option – DuroStar DS4000S

In these portable generator reviews we’ve alreadyDurostars 4000E had a look at some of the best models with 3000 – 5000 rated watts. Durostar DS4000S is another contender for the title of the top generator in this range.

What sets it apart from some of its competitors is its price tag. You will struggle to find a cheaper decent quality generator than this.

The engine runs very smoothly and is not too noisy – 69 decibels is an acceptable level.

It has all the useful features you would expect from a good quality generator such as auto low-oil shutdown mechanisms, electronic control and so on.

This model has been approved by the Environmental Protection Agency – EPA. Unfortunately, it does not comply with CARB norms – California residents  won’t be legally able to use it.


PROS
  • Simple in use
  • Easy maintenance
  • Low price tag
  • Quieter than some of its competitors
CONS
  • You have to purchase the wheel kit separately
  • Non-CARB compliant

Get It Now on Amazon


 

9. A Highly Efficient Dual Fuel (Propane/Gas) Generator – Duromax XP4850EH

Hybrid fuel generators are a viable alternative to gas-only models.Duromax XP4850EH Dual Fuel Not only they are often less costly to operate but also pose less environmental damage.

Thus if you are looking for a slightly more eco-friendly solution than ordinary gasoline portable generators, you should check out Duromax XP4850EH.

This generator gives you a choice between propane and gas. On top of that is is also fuel efficient which means that no matter which type of fuel you decide to use – you can rest assured it won’t burn too much of it.

It features a 4 stroke 210cc 7HP engine equipped with air cooling mechanism.

The built-in silencer helps reduce the noise emitted by this generator (however don’t expect to be it as quiet as inverter generators).

Its output panel has got multiple types of sockets suitable for various types of devices and appliances.

All in all it is a quite interesting choice for construction, workshops or even boats and RV.


PROS
  • Dual fuel
  • Fuel efficient
  • Multiple types of power outputs
CONS
Despite all the great features this generator has, it has some glitches that might be annoying.
  • More costly than typical gas generators

Click to Buy It on Amazon.com


10. A Reliable Option – Generac 5982 GP3250

Generac is one of the most trusted manufacturersGenerac3250 of portable generators on the market. This American company has already established its position as one of the industry leaders.

Even though in my personal opinion Westinghouse, Champion or Briggs & Stratton offer generators which sometimes outperform their rivals manufactured by Generac – you can’t really go wrong with purchasing their products.

Generac 5982 is no exception. It has all the characteristics you would expect from a top-notch product such as sturdy design, easiness of use, long running time and other useful built-in features considered to be an industry standard by now.

Low-oil shutdown, electronic start, OHV engine are some of these.

The circuit breaker is a great important addition, preventing the connected appliances from possible overheating.

See the full review here.


PROS
  • Large fuel tank
  • Circuit breaker
  • Durable
  • Automatic low oil shutdown
CONS
  • Quite heavy
  • Non-CARB compliant
  • Not the cheapest option

Get It on Amazon Now


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