Portable Generators: Ratings of Sources
Total of 12 Sources
For an explanation of how we rank reviews, see our ratings criteria page.
by Editors of ConsumerReports.org
Our AssessmentEditors test 14 generators, 11 of them portable, and rank them in categories such as power delivery, noise and ease of use. The generators are also assigned comparative scores that make it easy to compare the various models' relative merits. Three are recommended, and a fourth machine is listed as a best buy. Full details are available to subscribers.
by Bruce W. Smith
Our AssessmentBased on actual usage, this review compares four portable generators ranging from 1,600 to 2,400 watts, all of which use inverter technology for quiet, consistent electricity. Smith emphasizes factors that make a portable generator useful for camping: noise level, weight, power quality and ease of use. He also covers fuel economy and "watts per dollar." This report doesn't rank the generators, but discusses the pros and cons of each.
by Editors of Camping Life
Our AssessmentEditors put the Generac iX2000, the Yamaha EF2000iS and the Honda EU2000i through their paces, connecting each generator to a couple of appliances to assess power and performance. They also measure noise levels and fuel consumption, as well as compare factors such as weight and ease of use. The article doesn't give formal rankings, but lists the pros and cons of each machine. "The Yamaha offers a little more for your money when it comes to buying portable power," editors conclude.
Compact Generator Shoot-Out
by Rich Johnson
Our AssessmentThis review covers high-end portable generators for camping and RV use, with detailed information on five models that use inverter technology for quiet, clean power. Johnson lists the power output in watts for each, which range from 1,000 to 2,400 watts, as well as its weight, noise level and how long it will run on one tank of gas. He also rates each unit's ease of use, including maintenance and carrying comfort, and offers brief commentary.
by Contributors to Amazon.com
Our AssessmentAmazon.com users review the generators they've purchased, offering feedback and rating them on a scale of 5 stars. Those scores are averaged to give each machine an overall rank, making relative comparisons easy. Standout models get 4.4 stars or better out of 5 after at least 30 owner reviews. We include two models that have only about a dozen comments from users, but earn better than 4.5 stars out of 5: the Champion 46533 and the Briggs & Stratton 30469.
Portable Generator Ratings
by Contributors to ElectricGeneratorsDirect.com
Our AssessmentA number of users weigh in on the generators purchased at this retail website, which appears to be one of the few that doesn't pull Generac reviews straight from the manufacturer's site. Some models accumulate more than 50 user reviews, and we count only models that score 4.6 stars out of 5 or better after feedback from at least 20 owners.
by Contributors to Sears.com
Our AssessmentSears.com publishes owner reviews, but very few generators attract more than a handful. Of these, just two get a rating of 4.5 stars out of 5 or better after at least 10 user reviews: the Briggs & Stratton 30470 and the Stanley G5000S. Sears sells a number of brands, including Briggs & Stratton, Generac, ETQ, Honeywell and Coleman.
by Contributors to HomeDepot.com
Our AssessmentHomeDepot.com publishes owner reviews and ratings of the portable generators it sells. As on most retail sites, users offer commentary about the model they purchased and rate it on a scale of 5 stars. We count generators that receive 4.5 stars out of 5 or better after at least 20 reviews.
by Contributors to Lowes.com
Our AssessmentLowes.com sells about 10 different generators; the best-rated models get better than 4.5 stars out of 5 after about 30 user reviews. Two Generac models -- the GP5500 and the XG8000E -- appear to get great feedback, but upon closer examination those comments are pulled from the Generac website.
Generators & Accessories
by Contributors to TractorSupply.com
Our AssessmentThis site sells only a few brands of portable generators, primarily Generac and Champion. While most models get a smattering of reviews, the Champion 3500 stands out with a near-perfect rating from more than 100 users. At first glance the Generac GP5500 appears to get good ratings, too, but almost every review comes directly from the Generac website, a common issue with this product line.
Emergency/Portable Power: Generators, Solar, Wind, Thermal, Etc.
by Contributors to eHam.net
Our AssessmentThis website for ham radio enthusiasts invites readers to post comments on a wide variety of products, including portable generators. Just one model gets enough feedback so the average rating carries weight: After nearly 40 reviews, the Honda EU2000i gets 4.7 stars out of 5.
by Contributors to ReviewCentre.com
Our AssessmentThis U.K. website shows each model's average rating and the number of reviews upon which it's based. Several models and most brands are available in the United States, but only a few generators attract more than a handful of comments. The Honda EU2000i is an exception, with nearly two dozen reviews that average out to 4.1 stars out of 5 and good tips on how to use it.