Best Portable Generator For Home Emergency 2018

The event of a widespread blackout is not a far-off scenario. A strong storm or a malfunction in a power plant can easily cut the power off from your house. We all know how difficult and frightening to have no power.

So, in times like those, you should always have a portable generator as a backup power source. But, not just any ordinary portable generator would do! You would need to find thebest emergency portable generator for your home.

But, how will you choose the best? Today, we will discuss how to identify the top emergency generator.

Portable Emergency Generators vs. Standby Generators

You may have been told your friends, family, or generator salespeople that you should get a standby generator instead. Before you fall for the craze of a standby generator, let us clear the air first.

  • Portable Emergency Generator

The beauty of emergency portable generators lies in the affordability of its efficiency. They are easy to search and cheaper in the markets. Moreover, its fuel source is definitely affordable because it runs on gasoline. A typical generator may have 3, 000 – 8,500 of wattage power and can last as long as you maintain them well.

However, there are some necessary precautions that you need to observe with this type of generator.For example, an emergency portable generator emits deadly carbon monoxide gas during its operation.

  • Permanent Standby Generator

A permanent standby generator is a little bit different. This type of generator permanently resides beside your home. Unlike emergency portable generators, they can only be installed by a competent, licensed technician.

Because it can automatically provide power just after a blackout, standby generators have hefty price tags. However, they are safer because they run on natural gas.Some models can also do a self-diagnosis and inform you when it needs maintenance.

The Best Portable Home Emergency Generator Review

As we have mentioned earlier, portable generators have different sizes: medium, large, and extra-large. You might be thinking: “So, which one do I get?” Well, it’s simple – which one you need!

During emergencies, you need to plan which appliances you would need and their wattage equivalent.

1.  Medium (less than 5.5 kW)

A medium portable generator is a great choice for short, emergency blackouts. It is also the best option if you choose to use a few numbers of appliances.

Features

A medium portable generator has most of the features that you will need.

  • Circuit breaker-protected outlets for safety
  • A medium-sized fuel tank that would be enough to get you through a powerless night
  • Fold-down handles and wheels for easier portability
  • Low oil-level shutdown mechanisms and hour meters
  • Insulated materials for added durability

What To Look For

In choosing your best medium portable generator, there are several things that you need to consider.

  • Start: Of course, you will want an easier starting mechanism like an on/off switch or push button. If you prioritize convenience, then choose a generator bearing that mechanism. If not, you can always choose one with a pull-lever mechanism.
  • Fuel: Most medium generators in the market run only in gasoline, but there are ones accept other fuel choices. What you need to prioritize, however, is the low oil-level shutdown mechanism. This will ensure the safety of your home as you use your generator.
  • Wheels: Compared to the large and extra-large generators, the medium generator is lighter. You may opt not to have wheels for your generator, but it would be more convenient if you have one.
  • Outlets: If you prioritize safety, you should always choose a generator with covered outlets. However, if you don’t prefer that, then you may choose one with open outlets.

Pros

  • It is enough to power several survival appliances including refrigerator, microwave, sump pumps, four lights, a television set, and a furnace fan.
  • It is cheaper than the other generator sizes.
  • It is fitting for short-term blackouts.

Cons

  • Since it only has a running kilowatt range of 5.5, you may need to conserve a bit if ever the blackout lasts longer.
  • You probably cannot use other appliances or power a whole room.

Our Picks – We have two great recommendations for medium-sized generators.Generac Gas-powered portable generator

Generac 5939 GP5500 Gas-powered portable generator

This generator has a powerful 389cc OHV engine designed for long-time use. It also has a 72-gallon fuel tank that ensures a 10-hour run-time at 50% load. For added safety measures, it has a low-oil level shutdown feature and covered outlets.

This generator proves to be convenient as it has a fold-down locking handle and never-flat wheels. In addition, this generator is protected with hardened 1 ¼ inch tube cradle.

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Generac 5982 GP3250 Gas-powered portable generatorGenerac 5982 GP3250 Gas-powered portable generator

Its efficient 208cc OHV engine is not only designed for long use, but for extreme durability.

It has a 3.5 Gallon fuel tank that ensures 9.7 hours of running time at 50% load. For added safety, it features a low-oil level shutdown and covered outlets. This generator makes using it easy through a simple on/off switch. For reliable portability, it comes with eight-inch heavy duty wheels.

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2.  Large (5.5 kW to 9 kW)

A large-sized generator will surely get you through a couple of nights and days!

Features

Like other portable generators, large-sized portable generators bear the following features:

  • Circuit breaker-protected outlets for safety
  • A large-sized fuel tank that would be enough to get you through several powerless days
  • A power source that is safe for sensitive appliances like computers
  • Fold-down handles and wheels for easier portability
  • Low oil-level shutdown mechanisms and hour meters
  • Insulated materials for added durability

What To Look For

Large generators are similar to medium generators; the things you need to look out for are almost the same. However, because of its size, there are additional things to consider.

  • Start: If you prioritize convenience, you should always pick a generator with a simple start mechanism. In the end, it all depends on your preference whether you choose a simple start pushbutton or pull-lever.
  • Fuel: Like always, a low oil-level shutdown must be your first priority. Since medium-sized generators are designed for powerless days and nights, the chance of accidents is bigger. Having a low oil-level shutdown will keep that chance to a minimum.
  • Wheels: Large portable generators are heavy, so better buy one with wheels included. Before buying, be sure that the wheels are extremely sturdy. You don’t want to have your wheels breaking down, do you?
  • Outlets: For safety measures, be sure to have your outlets covered. But, on another hand, it would be very convenient if the outlets can be removed from its placement. Having several sockets in your outlet is good, too. But, with more plugged appliances, the load would spread further.

Pros

  • It can power the appliances including a computer, portable heater, computer, heating system, a second pump, and additional lights.
  • It can also power a whole room.
  • A 6.5-kilowatt generator can power survival appliances, extra appliances, and the family room.
  • An eight-kilowatt generator can power the same things plus an office!
  • It can help you last several days of no power.

Cons

  • You can only use this generator for a couple of days, not months.
  • You may need to conserve energy if you will be staying for several days.

Our Picks

To clarify, however, it is possible to power up more extra appliances if you choose to purchase one of these three recommended generators!

Briggs & Stratton 30664 Gas-powered portable generator

Briggs & Stratton 30664 Gas-powered portable generatorThe Briggs & Stratton 30664 Gas-powered portable generator can help you weather prolonged blackouts.

Its 2100 series OHV 420cc engine produces clean and instant power during powerless days. In addition, it can produce at least 25% surge wattage; thus, enabling you to run large appliances. Because of its 7.5-gallon tank, this generator is assured to run for 9 hours in 50% load.

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Generac 6954 GP8000E Gas-powered portable generatorGenerac 6954 GP8000E Gas-powered portable generator

 

Another great large-sized generator is the Generac 6954 GP8000E Gas-powered portable generator. Its generic OHV 420cc engine will definitely last long because of its splash lubrication.

It is made to be easier to use because of its convenient single electric start. Other than that, it has a low-oil level shutdown, covered outlets, and an hour meter. In case of repairs or maintenance, it includes a two-year limited warranty.

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Generac 5978 GP7500E Gas-powered portable generatorGenerac 5943 GP7500E Gas-powered portable generator

 

Last but not the least is the Generac 5978 GP7500E Gas-powered portable generator. It has a powerful OHV engine made extra durable through splash lubrication. It features an electric start option and includes a battery charger pack.

Moreover, it has a large capacity fuel tank for prolonged powerless nights and days. For added safety, it also features a low oil-level shutdown and an hour meter for tracking maintenance intervals.

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3.   Extra Large (9 kW and above)

There are a lot of things that you can do with an extra-large portable generator.

Features

Similar to the other sizes, extra-large have the same features with bonus parts:

  • Circuit breaker-protected outlets for safety
  • An extra-large fuel tank that would be enough to power some rooms
  • A power source that is safe for sensitive appliances like computers
  • Fold-down handles and wheels for easier portability
  • Low oil-level shutdown mechanisms and hour meters
  • Insulated materials for added durability
  • The idle mechanism that ensures quiet operation

What to Look For

  • Start: Most extra-large generators make use of an electric start system. This makes a portable generator more convenient to use. If you can help it, always choose an extra-large generator with a good electric start system.
  • Fuel: Since extra-large generators can power several appliances and rooms, its fuel tank must be big enough to handle those. So, when you are shopping for an extra-large generator, make sure to choose one with the biggest fuel tank!
    • For convenience, it would be smart to choose an extra-large generator with a battery charger jack, low oil level shutdown, and hour meter.
  • Inverter Technology: You should always choose that one generator with an energy conservation mechanism and a low-volume idle system.
  • Wheels: A fold-down handle and wheels is a must. Extra-large generators are extremely heavy, so don’t even try carrying one by yourself.
  • Outlet: It is a must to have a covered outlet with multiple sockets. Covered outlets and extra safety mechanisms should always be a priority in your extra-large generators.

Pros

  • A 10-kilowatt generator can already give you optimum comfort and security while powering several appliances and rooms.
  • A 15-kilowatt generator can power survival and extra appliances, family room, home office, kitchen, and laundry room.
  • You can use a small water heater, air-condition unit, electric range, clothes washer, and electric dryer.

Cons

  • A bit costly than the others.
  • It will need to be transported through a small vehicle or ask assistance from someone.

Our Picks

There are two great extra-large portable generators that you can try.

Generac 5735 GP17500E Gas-powered portable generatorGenerac 5735 GP17500E Gas-powered portable generator

 

With a Generac 992cc OHVI engine, it is considered as the most powerful generator in the Generac line.

It has a 16-gallon fuel tank that ensures 10 hours of running time at 50% load. For added measure, this generator has a built-in idle control. This feature reduces the noise of the generator while conserving fuel. In addition, it has an integrated lifting eye for easier portability.

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Generac 5734 GP15000E Gas-powered portable generator

Generac 5734 GP15000E Gas-powered portable generatorIts Generac 992cc OHVI engine uses full pressure lubrication with automotive style spin for the optimum longevity. It is made convenient with an easy-to-use electric start system.

With its 16-gallon fuel tank, it can run for 10 hours at 50% load. Similar to the Generac 5735, it also has a low oil level shutdown, hour meter, and plug-in battery charger jack. It even has an idle control system that regulates the noise it makes and the fuel it consumes.

These are some of the basic concepts, features, and functions to look for before buying your ideal portable generator for home emergency. Keep these in mind and go ahead! I wish you all success.

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