Best Inverter Generator Reviews – 2017 Comparison Lists

Inverter generators are the best portable power source in many situations, due to their portability, stable power, and convenience. They are useful for their lightweight and quite performance. We’re here to help guide you in your search for the best inverter generator; showing only the best models on the market. We give unbiased inverter generator reviews, informing you of your choices, and giving you an opportunity to see which inverter generators we liked best. With our comparison chart, reviews, tables, and guides; you will learn everything you need to know about inverter generators, how they work, and how to get the best one.

  • Honda EU2000iRecoil Start
  • 4.7 Customer Rating
  • Starting 2000W - Continuous 1600W
  • Fuel Type: Gas Capacity: 0.95 gal.
  • Tank Run-Time @ 25% Load: 8.1 hrs.
  • Noise Level @ 25% Load: 53 dB.
  • Weight: 46 lb.
  • Warranty: 3-Year
  • Price: $$$$

  • Yamaha EF2000iSv2Recoil Start
  • 4.6 Customer Rating
  • Starting 2000W - Continuous 1600W
  • Fuel Type: Gas Capacity: 1.1 gal.
  • Tank Run-Time @ 25% Load: 10.5 hrs.
  • Noise Level @ 25% Load: 51.5 dB.
  • Weight: 44 lb.
  • Warranty: 3-Year Limited
  • Price: $$$$

  • Champion Power Equipment 75537iWireless Remote + Electric + Recoil Start
  • 4.6 Customer Rating
  • Starting 3100W - Continuous 2800W
  • Fuel Type: Gas Capacity: 1.6 gal.
  • Tank Run-Time @ 25% Load: 8 hrs.
  • Noise Level @ 25% Load: 58 dB.
  • Weight: 95 lb.
  • Warranty: 2-Year Limited
  • Price: $$$

  • WEN 56310iRecoil Start
  • 4.6 Customer Rating
  • Starting 3100W - Continuous 2800W
  • Fuel Type: Gas Capacity: 1.85 gal.
  • Tank Run-Time @ 25% Load: 15 hrs.
  • Noise Level @ 25% Load: 57 dB.
  • Weight: 82 lb.
  • Warranty: 2-Year Limited
  • Price: $$

  • Westinghouse iGen2500Recoil Start
  • 4.3 Customer Rating
  • Starting 2500W - Continuous 2200W
  • Fuel Type: Gas Capacity: 1.0 gal.
  • Tank Run-Time @ 25% Load: 12 hrs.
  • Noise Level @ 25% Load: 53 dB.
  • Weight: 48 lb.
  • Warranty: 3-Year Limited
  • Price: $$

  • Briggs & Stratton 30545 P3000Recoil Start
  • 4.3 Customer Rating
  • Starting 3000W - Continuous 2600W
  • Fuel Type: Gas Capacity: 1.5 gal.
  • Tank Run-Time @ 25% Load: 10 hrs.
  • Noise Level @ 25% Load: 58 dB.
  • Weight: 84 lb.
  • Warranty: 2-Year Limited
  • Price: $$$

Scroll down to view the complete top 10 list of the top rated generators, reviews, and guides, in addition to our exclusive feature comparison tables of heavy duty and light duty inverter generators.

Best Inverter Generator Reviews

Honda EU2000I Inverter Generator

Best Inverter Generator

We have to give it to the Honda EU2000I inverter portable generator for its reliability and great performance. Produces only 53-59 decibels of noise depending on the load, making it one of the quietest generators compared to other brands of this type.

With a Honda GX100 engine, this generator is powerful, and with less than one-gallon fuel capacity, this machine is also fuel-efficient.

On a single tank at full capacity can run for just under 3.5 hours. And at quarter capacity, using 400 watts can run for over 8 hours. Weighing in at just 46 pounds, that’s a lot of power for this little machine.

The Honda EU2000I has 2000 watts of starting output and 1600 watts running output. Equipped with multiple power outlets, with advanced inverter technology suitable for powering a range of appliances, including smartphones, laptops, refrigerators, etc.

Another benefit is its capacity to use AC appliances, without the use of a specific accessory. CARB compliant, low emissions producing machine, makes it a great option for camping, tailgating, as well as a backup power source.

Overall, this generator is powerful for its size and is expandable with a second of the same unit; allowing you to effectively double your power when you need. With Honda’s reputation for excellence, this generator is certainly in the top tier of its class. Read our full review of the Honda EU2000i

 

Yamaha EF2000iSv2 Portable Inverter

Inverter Generator Reviews

The Yamaha EF2000iSv2 is a user-friendly and lightweight generator that is great for outdoor use. Weighs just 44 pounds, it’s as portable as generators can get.

Maximum power of 2000 starting watts and 1600 constant watts, and uses a load sensing mechanism that allows it to adjust the speed of the engine to match the load for better fuel efficiency and noise control.

Its noise level is rated at 61 decibels at full load, making it one of the quietest portable generators around. The gas tank holds a bit over one gallon, and will run for about 10 hours at 25% of the rated load.

Produces clean power that is stable, this makes it safe to use with delicate appliances such as mobile phones and digital cameras. It incorporates a new controller, built in the latest technology for easy control and output. There is a fuel gauge on the side for viewing and monitoring the fuel level.

The EF2000iSv2 also features a convenient parallel connection function that allows you to connect two of such generators for double the power. Overall, it’s a powerful reliable machine that would support different appliances in your home, RV or at your camping site. Supported by one of the best generator brands around, it’s top in it’s class. Read our full review of the Yamaha EF2000iSv2

 

Champion Power Equipment 75537i Portable Inverter Generator

Champion Power Equipment 75537i Portable Inverter Generator

This gas powered inverter generator comes fully assembled with a push to start electric button and a wireless remote.

It’s built-in U-shaped foldable handle and it’s rugged tires, are a big boost in user-friendliness as well as ease of use. A generator could hardly be called “portable” at 95 pounds without a method of easy transportation, but the handle and wheels on this machine fit the bill.

The Champion Power Equipment 75537i is powerful enough to run a 13500 BTU air condition. With a tank capacity of 6 liters or just over 1.5 gallons, that’s an impressive amount of power.

3100 starting watts and 2800 running watts, and runs up to 8 hours on a single tank of gas. It’s economy mode definitely helps with its gas efficiency. In economy mode, it automatically idles the engine to save fuel.

This RV ready inverter generator produces steady, clean, safe power; allowing you to use it with even your most sensitive electronics. The customer service available with this company is also great. Between its ability to run an air conditioner and charge a smartphone, I’d say this machine is as versatile as it is powerful.

 

WEN 56310i Inverter Generator

WEN 56310i Inverter Generator

The WEN 56310 inverter generator produces 3100 starting watts and 2800 running watts. Designed to produce stable and clean energy limiting its total harmonic distortion to only 1.2% at full load, making it safe to use with sensitive electronics such as laptops and cellphones or any vulnerable electronics.

Has a gas tank of 1.85-gallon that allows it to run over 7.5 hours at 50% of the rated load. Has an eco-mode switch which maximizes its fuel consumption by allowing the motor to automatically adjust its speed to match the required load.

In addition it allows for longer engine life and quiet operation. Relatively quiet for it’s size, rated at 57 decibels when at quarter load.

Weighs almost 82 pounds but the built-in wheels and collapsible handle allow for easy portability. It’s also parallel capable, easily connect two of such units for double the power.

Fully-packed overload protected safeguard panel, equipped with two 120V three-prong outlets, one 120V AC outlet, one 12V DC outlet, and two 5V USB ports. Armed with low-oil, low fuel automatic shutdown, which prevents the engine as well as any connected appliances from damage, along with light indicators. It’s also CARB compliant.

The WEN 56310 is a great option for camping grounds, tailgating, and can keep some of your critical appliances at home running in the event of a power outage.

 

Westinghouse iGen2500 Portable Inverter Generator

Westinghouse iGen2500 portable inverter generator

The all new Westinghouse iGen2500 inverter generator, a great addition to our list. It’s ability to adjust engine speed based on load is very convenient. Making it more fuel-efficient, saving you money and giving you longer run time.

Has 2500 starting watts and 2200 running watts, and with a single gas tank it runs over 6 hours at half load.

Weighing 48 pounds, comes in a new design with a built-in carry handle. This inverter generator creates clean power that doesn’t suffer from the electrical spikes and drops that are common with regular generators. Making it safe to use with your sensitive electronics, such as tablets and computers. Not surprisingly, it’s also capable of powering high voltage devices.

The iGen2500 boast impressive design features, including a LED display, a hood that is double insulated, dual quiet mufflers, and asymmetrical fans. These features are effective at keeping the machine cool, increasing its durability, giving it impressive power. In addition, limiting the noise level during operation with 53 decibels at quarter load.

Customer service is also one of the best features of this machine, with nationwide customer service and support. Overall, the Westinghouse iGen2500 is powerful and full of great features, while also being backed by a reliable company; making it great for a variety of uses.

 

Briggs & Stratton 30545 P3000 PowerSmart Inverter Generator

Briggs & Stratton 30545 P3000 PowerSmart Inverter Generator

The Briggs & Stratton 30545 P3000 Powersmart is designed with on the go power needs in mind. A luggage-style retractable handle, a built-in two person carry handle, making it easy for two people to lift this machine. Equipped, with two 6 inch wheels designed to never go flat, even across rough terrain.

With a starting output of 3000 watts, and a running output of 2600 watts, enough power to run an average air conditioner. At 25% load and with only 1.5 gallons of gas the P3000 runs up to 10 hours.

Boasting an especially user-friendly feature; this generator has an LCD display; allowing you to check the amount of energy used, and the total amount of running hours left of the unit. Not to mention maintenance reminders, such as oil, and filter. Being able to see the entire status of your power machine is a sought after convenience not standard with most generators.

With less than 3% harmonic distortion, this machine is safe to use with sensitive electronic devices. With multiple power outlets and ports, it’s also parallel capable allowing you to double your power for future convenience. The P3000 PowerSmart Series is a good option for RV camping, tailgating, and can provide for emergency home backup power.

 

Best Inverter Generator Comparison Chart

Feature/ProductHonda EU2000iYamaha EF2000iSv2Champion Power Equipment 75537iWEN 56310iWestinghouse iGen2500Briggs & Stratton P3000
Wattage:2000W / 1600W2000W / 1600W3100W / 2800W3100W / 2800W2500W / 2200W3100W / 2600W
Engine Displacement (cc):98 cc.79 cc.171 cc.212 cc.98 cc.171 cc.
Engine Horsepower (HP):2.8 HP2.5 HP5.5 HP3.5 HP2.96 HPN/A
Starting Method:RecoilRecoilWireless Remote + Electric + RecoilRecoilRecoilRecoil
Total Harmonic Distortion (THD):Less than 3% THDLess than 3% THDLess than 3% THDLess than 3% THDLess than 3% THDLess than 3% THD
Fuel Gauge:Not AvailableAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailable
Automatic Voltage Regulator (AVR):AvailableAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailable
Outlet Protection Circuit Breakers:AvailableAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailable
Low Oil Shutdown:AvailableAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailable
Quiet Mufflers:AvailableAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailable
Spark Arrestor:AvailableAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailableAvailable
Exhaust Emissions Certificate:EPA + CARB + CSAEPA + CARB + CSAEPA + CARBEPA + CARBEPA + CARB + CSACSA
Parallel Capable:AvailableAvailableNot AvailableAvailableAvailableAvailable

Vital Guide to Find the Best Inverter Generator

You’ve made the choice of which type of portable power source best fit your needs. Whew! But now you’re trying to decide on which is the best portable inverter generator. The decision doesn’t have to be difficult, you just need to consider a few questions, and the answers will help narrow the vast list of inverter generators on the market.

Things to Consider Before Buying – Needs, Features, Price

If you’re reading this, you’re the type of person who wants to have all of the information in front of them before making a purchasing decision. In that case, consider the following as you narrow your choices.

  1. Where Do You Intend to Use Your Inverter Generator?

spark icon

Believe it or not, deciding on your power requirements and where you intend to use your generator is important. Each place you intend to use your inverter generator can affect which one you’ll want to buy.

  • Home Back-up Power: This comes down to what you need to power in an outage event. If you just need your phone and a coffee pot, something as small as 1000 watts will suffice. On the other hand, if you need to power your sump pump and electric garage door; you’re going to need something much bigger.
  • RVs and Cabins: For extended off-grid living, you will want an inverter generator capable of running at 2000 watts or higher. Running appliances and entertainment devices simultaneously requires quite a bit of power. Another feature you may find necessary is the ability to link two or more inverter generators together; allowing you to still have the portability of an inverter generator while achieving higher power output.
  • Camping: You need to decide what you want to power and for how long when buying a portable power source for camping. A lot of times you won’t need a very big power source for camping; as there isn’t much that needs electricity in the middle of the woods. A 1000 watts or less should be ideal.
  1. Long Run Time – Think Gas Efficiency

The majority of inverter generators will have a 0.5 to 2.0 liter of a gas tank. When it comes to run time, portable power sources have a bit of a trade-off. More run time means a bigger gas tank means less portability. More portability means less gas tank and less run time. So weigh out your options, and if given a few pounds difference over run time, always take the run time.

  1. Portability – Light Weight or With Wheels

With portable power sources including inverter generators, portability means different things to different people; some want to be able to lift their power source, while some will trade weight for more power and wheels. Choosing what kind of portability you want, and what you’re willing to give up in exchange for that, is important. Personally, I would trade being able to lift my inverter generator for the ability to run my electronics longer.

As long as you have some kind of portability, which most inverter generators do; what type of portability is really a matter of personal choice.

  1. User-Friendly – First Time Using a Portable a Generator

If you’re not familiar with the ins and outs of these sorts of machines, you will want a machine that has some user-friendly features, such as;

  • Low oil shut off
  • Low gas shut off
  • Gas meter

Most inverter generators now come standard with these options. But always check to make sure.

  1. Noise Level – You Don’t Want to Keep Your Neighbors Up All Night

decibel meter for noise level

While inverter generators are significantly more quiet than regular generators, there’s still a lot of variation from machine to machine. So, it’s important to look at the noise rating of the inverter generators on your list. While that may not be a deciding factor in your purchase, it’s definitely something to keep in mind. You can measure noise in decibel (dB) for portable power machines. And anything above 60 decibels at 50% load for an inverter generator is higher than average.

  1. Price – What You Need Can Fit Your Budget

If you’ve already decided on an inverter generator as your portable power source of choice, then I’m sure you’ve seen the price tags. Inverter generators are more expensive than conventional generators. But an inverter generator is a much more versatile, much better quality, and in many cases, much easier to use portable power source.

The price of owning an inverter generator is a bit higher than owning a regular generator. But as shown by the steady increase of popularity that these portable inverters have achieved, many people are deciding that they’re worth it.

Watch Out – Avoid These Mistakes When Buying an Inverter Generator

Avoiding these mistakes will ensure you get the right product, at the right price.

  • Be aware of industry jargon, and only focus on the specifications of each machine. If you were selling cake, you would say it was the best cake ever, even if it wasn’t.
  • Get a machine manufactured by a well-known company. If you look all over and no one has heard of the company – don’t purchase from them.
  • Make sure you get a good warranty. If two machines match your needs and wants, check the warranty. The one with the best warranty is always the best choice. A warranty is a great sign of how a company feels about their product.
  • Price check. Look around and see if the price you’re getting from one place is the price you should be paying. Often, buying online will save you money.

Making Your Choice

Now, you’ve decided on the features that are important to you, what you need to power; and therefore the size of the inverter generator you need, what an acceptable noise level is, and what portable power machines fit within your budget. The only thing left is buying one.

The biggest thing to keep in mind as you make your choice is that while there are many great options out there, no one can say which one is ‘best’; because the best inverter generator for me could be annoying and inconvenient for you, and vice versa.

What Makes an Inverter Generator Special?

The terms ‘generator’, ‘power inverter’, and ‘inverter generator’ are commonly used, but there are market differences in these machines and their functions and abilities. To know what makes an inverter generator different from both inverters and regular generators. We’ll need to take a look at what each of them does.

  • Generators

A generator is a fuel powered motor attached to an alternator and that produces electricity. The motor of a generator has to run at a constant speed to be able to produce the current required.

  • Power Inverters

An inverter draws power from a fixed DC source, such as a car battery or a solar panel, and uses electric circuitry to ‘invert’ the DC power; creating AC power.

  • The New Generation Inverter Generators

sine wave comparison

Inverter generators use a 3-phase system. They create AC power like their generator counterparts, but then that power is converted to DC, and then ‘inverted’ to create pure sine wave electricity. Sine wave energy is considered superior to the regular energy common with generators. Primarily because sine wave energy doesn’t experience the spikes and dips in current that the regular energy does. This makes it safer to use inverter generators with sensitive electronics, such as your digital cameras, smartphones, and sound systems.

Unique Features of Inverter Generators

Inverter generators are uniquely useful when compared to regular generators and inverters, and have many advantages not found in their counterparts. When looking for a portable power source, there are key features to look for, and an inverter generator is many times more likely to fit your portable power needs.

  • Safe Energy for Sensitive Electronics

sensitive electronics

Many times, when searching for a portable power source; you’re looking for something versatile, and often for something to use as a backup power source for your home or a portable power source for camping, RV’s and cabins. All of these usages have one thing in common; you’re going to power sensitive electronic devices, such as laptops, phones, tablets, GPS navigation system, and so on. Using a regular generator poses an innate risk to these types of electronics; due to the unstable nature of the power regular generators produce. Making inverter generators much safer to use due to their power quality.

  • Convenient Portable Power Source

In this age of instant gratification and the constant search for convenience, inverter generators make more sense to own when compared to inverters and generators. They have their own power storage system (battery), they’re safe to use with sensitive electronics, such as computers and tablets. So, you don’t have to worry about damaging them, and they don’t need special conditions to run (such as solar panels, in the case of inverters).

Cost of an Inverter Generator

Many of us know that convenience comes at a cost, and the same is true for inverter generators. Possibly the only disadvantage of an inverter generator, as opposed to a generator or inverter, is the purchase price tag. The cost to own an inverter generator does tend to be higher than conventional generators, but with their unique features, they are definitely worth the higher price tag.

At the end of the day, only you can decide if an inverter generator is the right portable power source for you. But with convenience and features available with inverter generators, they are becoming the preferred source of portable power.

When Does an Inverter Generator Top a Conventional Generator?

Conventional generators and inverter generators both have their place in the world of portable power machines. With our inverter generator reviews, you’re able to see which ones are the best in their class. But even the top rated inverter generator can’t take the place of a conventional generator in some cases, and vice versa. That leaves us with the question, “When does an inverter generator top a conventional generator?” To answer that, we need to check the difference between the two. Inverter generators vs. conventional generators.

  • Conventional Generators

conventional genset

The general makeup of a generator, a fossil fuel driven motor wired to an alternator. Once the alternator is running, it produces electricity, similar to the way the engine and alternator work in your car. But the motor of a conventional generator has to run at a consistent speed, for it to produce the current required to run AC electronics. Conventional generators come in enormous sizes, upwards of ten thousand watts for commercial models. To put it in perspective; a commercial generator can be big enough to power your entire house, fridge, flat-screen, PlayStation and all.

  • Inverter Generators

inverter genset

Inverter generators are a bit more complicated than conventional generators; they use a 3-phase system. As with generators, inverter generators create AC power. But that’s where the similarities end. Inverter generators then convert the power to DC, which may seem a bit counter-intuitive. Once the power is in DC form; they invert that power to create sine wave energy – a much more stable type of power. Sine wave energy is considered a much more stable form of electricity. But inverter generators only get so big, typically maxing out at under 6000 watts.

Features in Inverter Generators that Top Conventional Generators

Features are going to prove the main difference between inverter generators and conventional generators.

  • Size: Inverter generators make portability a primary manufacturing goal. And are often found in sizes around 24 x 13 x 15 inches, some can be bigger, some smaller, but they average around this size. Conventional generators lack the convenience of their smaller counterparts.
  • Weight: It’s not unusual to find inverter generators under 75 pounds, sometimes much lighter. While you can find small generators, inverter generators are most often lighter.
  • Fuel: While generators typically have larger tanks, inverter generators are much more fuel-efficient; due to their ability to automatically adjust output based on load.
  • Noise: This is probably the biggest functional difference between these two types of machines. The average inverter generator is rated about 61 decibels at full load. To compare, an electric razor is rated at 68. Can you imagine? Alternately, conventional generators are rated around 65-75 decibels – the same range where jet engines are listed. This matters for many reasons, not the least because that level of noise constantly running could be intolerable.
  • Power Output: Generators come in almost any size you can imagine; from a few hundred watts to over fifty thousand. Most inverter generators tap-out at under six thousand watts.
  • Type of Power: In the age of smartphones and computers; our precious electronics are often the reason we buy backup power equipment or portable power equipment for camping. As we discussed above, generators experience a lot of dips and surges in their power output. Whereas inverter generators provide a constant and consistent output of power. The result is that charging your smartphone with a conventional generator could fry its sensitive battery; where on the other hand, charging it with an inverter generator is safe.

Occasions an Inverter Generator would Top a Conventional Generator

  • Camping: An inverter generator can quietly power the devices you need to run.
  • RVing: You will need something quiet because most campsites have enforced noise restrictions between certain hours of the night.
  • Cabin: You’re probably going to want to plug in your phone, laptop, or portable electric stove, whether you’re in your cabin or boat. You wouldn’t want to listen to the ever-present roar of a generator.
  • Emergency Backup: You will need a stable, quiet power source to power a few basic electronic devices and appliances.

Unless you have a need for a large source of power, an inverter generator is nearly always the best route to go. It provides the quiet, stable, safe electricity you need in the most efficient way possible. They’re easy to transport, highly portable, and need very little monitoring. Our inverter generator reviews cover the features and benefits of different models and sizes; allowing you to find the best portable generator for your needs.

Bottom Line

There is a fairly recent advancement in portable power sources. We’ve narrowed the vast list of inverter generators down to only the top of their class. We’ve done the work of finding and comparing the best inverter generator models from multiple companies and brands. And have chosen to only review the best ones on the market, covering the features and benefits of different models and sizes. With our guide, comparison charts, and inverter generator reviews, you should have no problem identifying your power needs, discovering the features you want; and at the end, deciding on which of the inverter generators is the best one for you.

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