Are you planning a camping trip and need the best camping generator on the market? When selecting the best generator there typically isn't one unit that will suit all.
For example if you are tent camping, you may only need to produce a small amount of power and do want the convenience of a small portable generator that can be easily carried like a piece of luggage. If you are RV camping, you typically have greater power needs requiring a larger generator but you will still want your camping generator to be quiet and efficient.
Like the Honda EU2000i, the most remarkable feature of the WEN 56200i is its low operational noise level. This, and its rounded, smooth-edge design, and compact dimensions, make it very convenient to take on a camping trip.
Weighing just 48lbs, this generator has a 1-gallon gasoline tank, an running wattage of 1,600W and surge wattage of 2,000W. Powered by an eco-friendly yet powerful 79.cc engine, the WEN 56200i can power any standard household electrical appliance.
The generator has two 120V 20A 3-prong plug outlets, a 12V DC 8.3A outlet, and a 5V USB port. This has the technology to handle anything that will help make your camping base a comfortable home from home.
This is an incredibly quiet generator, producing an incredibly quiet 51dB at a quarter-load, so it's well under the benchmark for regular human conversation.
Fuel economy is also another big plus with the WEN 56200i. With its eco-mode, which automatically adjusts fuel consumption to load, the WEN 56200i regulates and maximises fuel economy. With a full 1-gallon tank, this generator will run for four hours at full capacity, and 6 hours on half load.
And like the Honda EU2000i, it's possible to connect two WEN 56200i generators to boost available power. Not only is there a low oil indicator, there is also an auto shut-down when the unit runs low on fuel.
This is another unit that, with its smooth edges and rounded corners and a convenient integral carry-handle, is very easy to pack for a camping expedition.
While we applaud WEN for including auto shut-off features for low fuel and low oil, there are some drawbacks. Customers have complained about the lack of an oil level indictor. In addition, difficulty of changing oil is another frequent criticism.
However, there's no doubt that the safeguard design features will help to ensure a longer life for this generator. With dimensions of 18in x 11in x 18in, it's incredibly compact, making for easy storage in a car or RV.
It is also a very easy unit to get going. Although some users found the construction a little 'plastic-y', there are no reports of any difficulty starting the unit, even in cold weather.
The actual unit itself has a host of safeguards to protect the technology from overloading. Its technology—which replicates a pure sine wave to limit harmonic distortion—is ideal for smaller mobile devices like tablets, smartphones and laptops.
This generator has also been certified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and by the California Air Resources Board (CARB), so its power is clean and eco-friendly.
The WEN 56200i is covered by a generous warranty of two years. And customer service is reportedly first class. In the event of a problem arising with your generator, you can contact a customer hotline, or available of an extensive network of service representatives.
For a quick recap of the main strengths and weaknesses of the WEN 56200i, here they are again in an easy to read chart.
|Yamaha EF2000iSCH Portable Generator - Pros and Cons|
|Running time is great - 10.5hrs on half-load||Power is a little on the low side for some.|
|Design makes for easy carriage and storage.||Expense will definitely be an issue for some.|
|Attractive, retro design and camouflage casing.||Some customers find it difficult to start.|
|One of the quietest of all portable generators.|
Amazon Customer Reviews: 555
Average Customer Review Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars
According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, the dBA emission of units such as the WEN 56200i puts them in the category of ‘normal conversation', which is great news for anyone who wants to bring a generator on a camping vacation without any negative impact on other users of the campsites where they are staying.
This clean power generator has two three-prong 120V receptacle, a 12V DC port and one 5V USB interface, enabling to power even the smallest and most sensitive of electronic devices, including smartphones and tablets, in addition to televisions and larger computers and tech items.
EPA III- and CARB-compliant, this generator's powerful 79.7cc 4-stroke OHV engine produces 2000 surge watts and 1600 rated watts, so it's also powerful enough to be used on construction sites and during household power outages.
Another incredibly compact and ultra quiet generator, this unit from Yamaha is one of the most convenient we've seen for a camping trip. Beautifully designed with an outdoors-themed camo finish, the EF2000iSCH is a great addition to your camping equipment.
This generator resembles a portable radio from a bygone age, but don't be fooled, either by the retro charm, or the dimensions. Weighing just 44.1lbs and measuring 19.3in x 11in x 17.9in, the dinky proportions mask a powerful performer.
Easily stowed away for transport to your campsite of choice, the Yamaha EF2000iSCH has 1,600W rated and 2,000W maximum AC output. It uses the most advanced noise suppression techniques to achieve a noise level of just 51.5dB on a quarter-load.
This generator uses cutting edge technology to achieve maximum fuel efficiency. Its Smart Throttle feature automatically adjusts engine speed based on its load,
With a pair of 120V AC outlets an a single 8A 12V DC outlet, the Yamaha is ideal for powering a broad range of appliances, from the smallest tech devices, right up to fridges and microwave ovens.
Powered by an air-cooled 4-stroke OHV engine, you'll get an incredible running time of up to 10.5 hours when running at 50% of its full capacity.
This generator is good for what it does, but if you need an appliance for higher power machines than domestic appliances, you will need something more powerful.
True, parallel expansion ports enable you to connect two of these generators and boost your power when more than 2,000W is required. But given the price, perhaps a more powerful generator might be more cost effective. For a camping trip, however, this is quite adequate.
The design of the Yamaha EF2000iSCH makes for an arresting first impression. Its camouflage-inspired casing means that it will be right at home in the outdoors. And its vintage wireless radio aesthetic means it can be unobtrusively sited in use, and stowed away discreetly when it's not in operation.
Yamaha have included some simple, albeit great, features on this unit that make it a standout winner. For instance, unlike many other units, there is a fuel gauge that makes it easy to keep an eye on fuel levels in the unit.
Controls are incredibly user-friendly while the fuel efficiency of the unit is just about second to none. A special word is required, we feel, for the noise levels. In eco mode and on a half load, it is notably quiet, so you certainly won't disturb your neighbours on the campsite.
Other features include auto decompression, which assists with starting, especially in cold weather. Meanwhile, auto warm-up makes it easy for you to find the necessary engine speed for appliances of higher power.
All of this means that you will be able to power a diversity of appliances, reliably and safely, and without annoying your neighbours due to noise pollution!
Yamaha has included a huge array of safety features in this unit to safeguard against overheating or other damage. The Oil Watch Warning System is a fantastic way of preventing damage caused by low oil. The low-fuel automatic shutdown means you will never risk damage from 'running on empty'.
And there is a petcock feature too, which shuts the gas off completely from the engine when not in use. This means that the engine carburettor is dry, and there's no risk of damage from stale fuel.
The Yamaha EF2000iSCH is certified by the California Air Resources Board (CARB), so if you're conscious about air quality, use the unit with complete peace of mind.
When it comes to maintenance, it's quite easy to monitor the operations of the Yamaha EF2000iSCH to ensure optimum performance. If more assistance is required, you can avail of customer support. There is also great three-year limited warranty cover.
If you're still uncertain about the Yamaha EF2000iSCH, here are its main selling points and drawbacks in a simple table format.
|Briggs & Stratton P3000 Portable Generator - Pros and Cons|
|Robust, durable design.||Power a bit lower than others in 3000W class.|
Amazon Customer Reviews: 441
Average Customer Review Rating: 4.3 out of 5 Stars
The Yamaha EF2000iSCH Portable Generator is another of the most powerful and yet most discreet generators on the market, making it eminently suitable for use whether on a camping trip, or at home or work to power large electronics or even construction tools.
With 1600W rated AC output (2000W maximum), this Yamaha unit will provide 13.3/16.7 amps at 120V, and also has a super-quiet muffler with a USFS-approve spark arrestor, meaning that it will operate at 51.5 dBA on a quarter-load.
Other features include a Smart Throttle engine speed adjustor which improves fuel economy and minimises noise, an inverter system with Pulse Width Modulation control, and CARB-compliancy.
When you're shopping around for a reliable generator, Briggs & Stratton is one of the best known brands. When you take a look at the P3000 Portable Generator, you can see ample evidence for this brand reputation.
This generator has cutting edge features that, combined with its robust, rugged build and reliability, make it a very popular choice indeed for campers and outdoors types.
It's incredibly simple to use, with a well designed recoil start and one power control knob. All ports and features are well laid out and early labelled on the well designed control panel.
There are few appliances that will stump this generator, as it has seven outlets, including a 12v DC charger outlet and USB port for charging phones and small handheld appliances.
The unit also has four 120V AC outlets for the standard household appliances and domestic power tools. Finally, there's a single 120V 30-amp locking outlet with an RV adapter, for more advanced power requirements.
Versatility is the name of the game with Briggs & Stratton. This machine is powerful enough for a large range of electrical appliances, and discreet enough to operate at noise levels appropriate for neighbourhood and public areas. It will operate at 58dB on a quarter-load.
With 3,000W (starting) and 2,600W (running), and a fuel tank capacity of 1.5 gallons, this generator will provide up to 10 hours of running time on a quarter load.
Briggs & Stratton have a reputation for quality construction, and the P3000 is the perfect example of the brand's signature build standards.
It is a bit larger than some of the other units on our list, and it weighs a hefty 85lbs. However, this is what should be expected from a generator in this power class. And with a telescopic handle and durable 6in solid wheels, you'll have no difficulty in moving this unit to wherever you need it most.
Storage might be a bit of an issue for some people, however. This would probably not be the unit to buy if you live in a small apartment, for example. A garage would be a prerequisite for storage.
However, it is incredibly user friendly and easy to start, perhaps even more so than any other unit in this review post. And StatStation LCD Display provides you with all insights you require to ensure optimum performance. The easy to read screen shows the amount of power being used, the total unit hours and maintenance and top-up reminders for oil, air filter and spark plugs.
The unit also has a dedicated parallel connector port, enabling you to connect two PowerSmart units together to generator more power if required.
Briggs & Strattons is one of the mainstay brands of the power equipment and engine industry, and earned a reputation through the quality of its products and super customer service.
While price may be an issue for some customers, you are also being into this superb standard of after-sales service. There is also a two-year limited consumer warranty on this product. And every Briggs & Stratton generator is shipped with extensive literature that guides you through every aspect of the unit.
All manuals come with maintenance schedules as well. And, even if you lose yours, or would like to view one before making a purchase, it's possible tot download these from the Briggs & Stratton website.
Here's a quick recap of the main points of the Briggs & Stratton P3000, and a guide to its popularity and critical favour among Amazon customers.
|Yamaha EF2000iSv2 Portable Generator - Pros and Cons|
|Excellent run-time of 10.5hrs on half-load.||Power will be a bit low for some customers.|
|Compact & light, easy to transport & store.||Unit is a little on the expensive side for general use.|
|Attractive, eye-catching retro design.||Some users have difficulty with the starter.|
|One of the quietest generators.|
Amazon Customer Reviews: 242
Average Customer Review Rating: 3.6 out of 5 Stars
It's not surprising to find Briggs & Stratton on a list of generators suitable for camping trips. This P3000 appliance is both powerful enough to start a standard RV air conditioner but quieter than most traditional camping generators. It has a 1.5-gallon fuel tank that provides up to 10 hours of continuous operation at quarter-load. The generator can handle large equipment and sensitive modern electronics, making it perfect for a camping trip where you don't want to have to do without home comforts while you're away. The unit's 30545s engine speed will reduce noise, fuel consumption and emissions, and there is a two-year limited warranty to give peace of mind to the customer.
This update of the Yamaha EF2000iS is another superb addition to the modern camper's cache of camping equipment. Like its sister EF2000iSCH product above, this has a beautiful retro design, and weighs only 44.1lbs. The light weight and compact dimensions, 19.3in x 11in x 17.9in, make it perfect for taking on a camping trip.
Easy to transport, it's a dream to use when you get to your base, and will provide 1,600W rated and 2,000W maximum AC output. With two 120V AC outlets, as well as a single 8A 12V outlet for charging batteries, this unit has sufficient power for all your standard home appliance comforts.
At the same time, the unit is packed with sufficient noise reduction technology and build procedures to ensure a quiet running time that will not disturb or disrupt your camping neighbour. At its quietest, the Yamaha EF2000iSv2 will emit a noise level of no more than 51.5dB when on a quarter load.
The EF2000iSv2 is powered by an efficient and reliable OHV engine. It's part of a system packed with great features such as Smart Throttle that automatically tailors engine speed to load. Together, these components provide a very impressive running time of up to 10.5 hours on a half-load.
It may not be powerful enough for some tastes, and if not, parallel expansion is possible. Connect another EF2000iSv2 and you'll get double the power. However, given the price, it might be wiser to go for a more powerful generator. But for camping, this really ought to suffice.
Like its sister EF2000iSCH product here, the Yamaha EF2000iS makes an incredibly cool first impression, with its bright, attractive color scheme and a design aesthetic that makes the unit resemble a vintage wireless radio.
This means it will look discreet when in use, and will be easily stowed away when the unit is not required.
Kudos to Yamaha for including a fuel gauge and gasoline petcock. This means that monitoring fuel levels is so much easier than some of the other units reviewed here. Meanwhile, the gasoline petcock allows you to shut gas off from the engine and allow the carburettor to run dry. Therefore, no more problems from stale fuel whilst in storage
Other features of this great generator include auto decompression. This will assist with starting in cold weather, while the auto warm-up performs a similar function when using the unit for more high powered appliances.
In addition to the self-protection safety features outlined above, the Yamaha EF2000iSv2 is certified by the Environmental Protection Agency and the California Air Resources Board (CARB).
If you're conscious about air quality, use the unit with complete peace of mind, Yamaha is a safe pair of hands. The brand has the longest emission engine durability ratings issued by these environmental agencies.
It's a pretty simple affair, even for a non expert, to monitor the Yamaha EF2000iSv2. When more knowledgeable assistance is required, this can be acquired through the company's customer support network. There is also a three-year limited warranty with the EF2000iSv2.
Here's a quick overview of the key advantages and disadvantage of the EF2000iSv2, together with ratings from customers who've purchased the unit on Amazon.
|Honda EM5000S Portable Generator - Pros and Cons|
|Pull-cord and electric start options available.||Perhaps a little too expensive for mass taste, but worth every cent.|
|Has one of the most efficient non-inverting engines.||The gas tank is not the largest available on the market.|
|Relatively quiet operational noise levels.|
|Clean and consistent power supply is ideal for domestic use.|
Amazon Customer Reviews: 441
Average Customer Review Rating: 4.3 out of 5 Stars
The Yamaha EF2000iSv2 portable generator is the second unit on our list from Yamaha, which shows the manufacturer's strengths at making generators that are suitable for camping trips or in other outdoor circumstances where you don't wish to trouble your neighbours with noise.
This unit can comfortably power larger electronics and construction tools, but also safely provide backup for senstive electronics. With 1600W rated AC output (2000W maximum), this unit also benefits from the company's super-quiet muffler with its USFS-approved spark arrestor.
Like the EF2000iSCH, this generator will operate at 51.5 dBA on a quarter-load, while the appliance also has Smart Throttle engine speed adjustor technology to maximise fuel economy and minimise noise, as well as an inverter system with Pulse Width Modulation control, and CARB-compliancy.
The Honda EU2000i is ideal for camping, because it's among the most compact and lightweight generators available. Weighing slightly over 46lbs when empty, the EU2000i measures just 21in x 12in x 19in. It certainly won't get in the way and will be easily stowed away when not in use.
Another thing that makes it great is its relatively low operational noise level. The EU2000i emits a maximum noise level of 59dB, which puts it in the same level as normal conversation, or the ambient noise level of a quiet neighbourhood. In other words, it won't disturb you or your fellow campers or RV-ers on a campsite.
The EU2000i is powerful enough for standard electronic home appliances, including fridges and televisions. It also has the Inverter technology to ensure that it's safe for powering the smallest and most sensitive mobile tech appliances.
Rated at 1,600W with peak power of 2,000W, the Honda EU2000i has a powerful 98.5cc GX100 engine. It's not the most powerful generator on the market, but it's certainly fine for camping, and can be used with complete peace of mind. It has a fuel tank of just over a gallon, and you'll get up to 8 hours of power on a full tank.
This appliance would not be suitable for powering an air conditioner but two EU2000i units can be connected for double the power. Against that, this is not the cheapest generator on the market, so if you need more power, it might be more cost effective to consider another option.
With its rounded corners and edges, handy carry-handle, and Honda's signature red and black finish, the design of the EU2000i makes an immediate impact.
There is an issue around the absence of a fuel indicator. The only way to check the level of gas in the tank is to remove the cap and look inside. It's not the ideal fuel-check solution.
However, it's relatively easy to start, with its simple recoil system (although an electric start would have been preferred), and the GX100 engine is one of the most efficient on the market.
This is one of the safest portable generators available to take with you on a camping trip. The unit is certified by the Canadian Standards Association (CSA), which is recognised in Canada, the US and worldwide. It's also certified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and is approved by the California Air Resources Board (CARB).
General maintenance and operation is pretty simple, for all levels of expertise. And although there is no fuel gauge, the EU2000i is protected by an 'Oil Alert' feature that shuts it down when the oil level gets too low. If you're not an expert, it's a simple matter to ensure the machine is topped up with oil.
Honda customers can avail of a huge, expansive network of Honda maintenance and repair facilities across the US. And the Honda EU 2000i is also covered by a generous three-year warranty, which covers parts and servicing.
Here are the key strengths and weakness of the Honda EU2000i, set out in a handy, easy to read chart.
|WEN 56200i Portable Generator|
|Fuel efficiency is very good.||Changing oil is difficult for some.|
|Running noise is super quiet.||Lack of oil level gauge is frustrating.|
|Light, compact & ultra portable.|
|2-year warranty & great support.|
Amazon Customer Reviews: 347
Average Customer Review Rating: 4.8 out of 5 Stars
The Honda EU2000i is characteristic of the utility and user-friendliness for which the manufacturer has been celebrated around the globe for decades. This 2000W 120V generator is super quiet, extremely easy to carry and incredibly energy-efficient to boot.
It can operate continuously for up to 8.1 hours on a single gallon of gas. This unit is absolutely ideal for everything from TVs, satellite receivers and fridges, down to DVD players, coffee pot and smaller mobile tech appliances. No list of the best camping generator units would be complete without the Honda EU2000i.
This FAQs section will answer most of the questions that arise while you're browsing the camping generators market. Here, we attempt to flesh out all the general information relating to portable generators. More in-depth specifics can be found above in the main product reviews.
If you're new to generator shopping, this section is your helping hand. It will help guide you to the generator that will be absolutely perfect for your specific camping generator requirements.
If you are an avid outdoors man, you may be surprised at just how much a simple camping generator can revolutionise your camping experience, by providing you with a few of the comforts of home, while in the wild.
As portable generators come in a range of differing wattages, we cannot concretely tell you what your generator will or will not be able to support. Our advice would be to check out the wattage your camping equipment demands, and ensure that you go with a generator that can easily cater for their needs.
Rated wattage refers to the wattage a generator can continuously produce, which is the measure that you need to take most into account when browsing. On the other hand, the surge wattage is usually produced for only a short period of time. Think of this as the 'peak' of what the generator can produce.
Yes and no. Obviously a lightweight, smaller generator will be handy in the case of emergency blackouts and camping. However, the smaller and more lightweight the generators have less wattage, lower tank capacity, and shorter run time. If you're concerned about the difficulty of transporting larger unit, simply invest in a wheel kit.
Electric start is a start-up method boasted by some generators that effectively eliminates the need for a cord-pulling mechanism. The result is cleaner and less laborious, getting your generator going with the simple push of a button. The best generators have both types of start-up capabilities—cord and electric)—providing the user with a backup in case one fails. While electric start is generally reliable, it can fail in certain circumstances, such as a dead battery. Therefore, the backup cord-start option can be a godsend.
Yes, if your generator is too large to be carried around comfortably. However, a wheel kit is not entirely necessary if your generator is compact, and easily transported by hand.
Your generator must always be set-up outside of any dwelling structures, this includes tents, huts, you name it. Additionally, generators should always be kept away from windows or doors or openings where exhaust fumes may enter. Furthermore, it's extremely important to protect your generator from water and other outdoor hazards. Therefore the best option is to set up a dry outdoor space with sufficient ventilation to prevent any accidents.
Note: Generator exhaust fumes are highly dangerous, and can cause severe (Carbon Monoxide) poisoning. All safety instructions and precautions are to be followed exactly, with no deviation.
Operating your generator frequently keeps it in better condition, by preventing harmful effects due to the long-term storage of fuel. As a rule of thumb, we generally recommend starting your generator once a month. However, more specific details may be included in your user manual. We advise you to read your manual in its entirety, and follow any maintenance instructions set out there.
Take your generator out into an open, very well ventilated space. Check all parts to ensure that they are still in decent condition, especially the generator's carburettor. The generator should be cleaned thoroughly, closely following procedure laid out in your user manual. We recommend filling the machine with fresh fuel, and a new spark plug. The oil level must also be checked to ensure that it is higher than the minimum fill-mark. Then, taking all safety precautions outlined in your user manual, begin start-up.
When water gets into your portable generator it can be a serious safety hazard. Additionally, damage can be caused to the components of the machine. Should water get into your generator, power it off immediately when possible, never risk your own safety. Included user documents should detail the correct procedure to follow to shut down the device. If there is any question of a threat to your safety, we recommend keeping your distance from the unit. Then, make contact with a company representative or other qualified operative.
Most portable generators have decibel ratings in the 55-85dBA range. We would consider any generator with a noise level lower than 70dBA to be quiet. For reference, the average sound of a human conversation registers at approximately 60dBA. Therefore, most portable generators are often not very loud. However, we made a quiet operational noise a default requirement for inclusion in this review of camping generators.
The prices of portable generators can range into the thousands of dollars, for the higher-range units. That being said, you can get a perfectly good camping generator for under $500. This is a worthwhile investment for access to conveniences and comforts when you're out in the wilderness.
This should be outlined in our user manual alongside instructions on how to change the oil. The manual will also advise on how often this procedure must be carried out. The correct fuel—and regular replacement when necessary—is crucial for the proper upkeep and maintenance of your generator.
Fuel will begin to deteriorate within about a month. If you wish to store fuel for longer, you should add a suitable fuel stabilizer as soon as possible. What this will do is essentially stop the ethanol from damaging the components that carry out combustion. However, we still advise you to remove the fuel after your camping trip and put it to other uses.
Note: Be sure that your generator's fuel is compatible with any other engines you intend to use it with.
Wrapping up our review, we hope that you found our insight to be helpful. Your best move is to apply the information in our FAQs section to what you've learned from the product reviews. This will help you to minimise the tedium that arises from needles hours of blind browsing. Happy camping!