The Generac iX2000 inverter produces reliable, surge-free electricity that's safe for powering TVs and computers. Owners love its value, but experts and users alike warn that it's louder than the competition and can overload or bog down under partial loads.
Safe for electronics. Rated for just 2,000 watts with surge capability of 2,200 watts, the Generac iX2000 is less powerful than other portable generators. However, its inverter technology provides the stable current that's safe for computers, televisions and other delicate electronics.
The iX2000 provides enough juice to power the essentials, including refrigerators and freezers so users won't lose food. "Powered everything I threw at it with a peak of 3 laptops, cable modem, router, 2 lights and a full sized refrigerator/freezer," writes an owner at Amazon.com. However, it can't handle everything; "I'm a little bummed that it won't start my gas hot water heater," says another.
Most owners say the Generac iX2000 offers smooth performance, but several complain that it goes into overload even under minimal load. One Amazon.com user reports that it bogged down when loaded with just 1,600 watts; another says it surged at just less than 1,500 watts of load, and bogged down under 750 watts. In a nutshell, the iX2000 is great for clean power, but only when it works.
Includes a DC outlet. The iX2000 has about what you'd expect from a small inverter: two 5-15R outlets and one 12-volt DC outlet for charging batteries. Similar generators on the market offer 20-amp outlets compared to the iX2000's 15 amps.
Loud for an inverter. Generac doesn't run noise tests on its generators, but that doesn't stop a couple of owners with decibel meters from testing the iX2000 themselves. One measures it at 75 to 82 decibels from a meter away, and 73 to 79 decibels in "eco" or idle mode. The other measures it at 82 decibels, but doesn't offer specifics. Running at a noise level of roughly 80 decibels would make the iX2000 about as loud as city traffic or a garbage disposal.
The editors of Camping Life call the iX2000 "noticeably louder than the Honda [EU2000i] and Yamaha [EF2000iS]," and say it vibrates more than the competition. Most owners agree that the extra volume is the true cost of getting a 2,000-watt inverter at about half the price of comparable generators.
Very fuel-efficient. Generac estimates 5.3 hours of runtime at quarter load on an 0.85-gallon tank of gas, but users report getting much better results. "Set on economy mode, it powered my camp trailer with furnace and lights running, plus fully recharged my 2 12-volt trailer batteries and ran for approximately 9 hours before it ran out of gas," posts one Amazon.com reviewer.
Another says he saw about nine hours of runtime while powering "two freezers and a number of lights," while a third reports 12 hours of power to a refrigerator and gas fireplace blower fan.
Simple and straightforward. Unlike other portable generators, you need to prime the Generac iX2000 to start it, but owners are unfazed. "It's portable and easy to start, and the directions are close to idiot proof," writes one at ElectricGeneratorsDirect.com.
However, a number of users complain that the iX2000 doesn't last long. "First generator ran for about 30 minutes, then never ran again," says one Amazon.com poster who ordered a replacement that was also defective. Another ended up purchasing three generators: The first had electrical problems after two weeks and took three months to replace, then broke again within six months; the other two generators were out of service within nine months.
Several owners add that this inverter's motor runs unevenly. Some fix the problem by adjusting the spark plug gap, a few have the carburetor repaired and others just give up. The Generac iX2000 comes with a two-year warranty. Although we found a couple of complaints about long waits for replacement parts, feedback on customer service for this model is better than for most Generac generators.
1. Camping Life Magazine
Review Credibility: Very Good Camping Life tests the Generac iX2000, the Yamaha EF2000iS and the Honda EU2000i by connecting them to appliances. In addition to rating each model's power and performance, they measure noise level and fuel consumption, and assess overall ease of use. Testers say the Generac iX2000 is noisier and heavier than the other two portable generators, and uses more gas. However, the Generac costs about half as much, so it's "a bargain for those who need one."
Review: Portable Power, Editors of Camping Life, June 2, 2011
Review Credibility: Very Good About 40 owners review the Generac iX2000 here, giving it an average rating of just 2.9 stars out of 5. Several complain that it's too loud, and others say it doesn't produce the power the manufacturer claims it does. However, some users are satisfied.
Review: Generac 5793 iX2000 2,000 Watt 126cc 4-Stroke OHV Gas Powered Portable Inverter Generator, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of November 2012
3. Electric Generators Direct.com
Review Credibility: Good The Generac iX2000 gets a rating of 4.4 stars out of 5 from more than 40 owners here. Few complaints are posted, but a couple of users say they received a defective unit and had to exchange or return it. One review reads: "[During Hurricane Irene] we used the generator for 82 hours, refilling it with gas about 3 times per day. It operated our sump pump and refrigerator. It was easy to use and worked very well."
Review: Generac iX2000 - 2000 Watt Portable Inverter Generator, Contributors to ElectricGeneratorsDirect.com, As of November 2012