9 Best Small Generators: Keep Your Essentials Going

Power outages are common in almost all parts of the world and they may often come unannounced. This is why it is important to have a small and portable generator by your side so that you don’t have to live in the dark.

With a best small generator, you will be able to run different appliances without any difficulty. Plus, since they are portable, you can even carry them when you go out on a picnic or on a trip.

Small generators are without a doubt useful but picking the best small generator can be quite a challenge due to the huge number of options out there.

To help you in this regard, we’ve reviewed the nine best small generators.

Let’s take a look!

Overview Table

We studied the market, looked at different options and tested the most prominent ones. As a result, we picked these nine best small generators based on features, price, performance, and reliability.

This overview chart will help you compare our nine best picks so you can pick the one that suits you the best. After going through a brief outline of each, you can look into these nine generators in more details in our product review section.


Editor choice 1 WEN 56202i
WEN 56202i
(Best Small Inverter Generator)

Extremely light for its power. Comes with a 4 stroke OHV 79.7 cc engine, offers 1700 running and 2000 peak watts with multiple ports.

2 Champion 4000 Watt RV Ready
Champion 4000 Watt RV Ready
(Best Small Open-Frame Generator)

More lightweight and quieter than other open-frame models. Runs at just 64 dB with 4000 surge and 3500 running watts. The company offers lifetime technical support along with a 3-year warranty.

(Best Small Solar Generator)

This unit weights just 7.3 pounds. Plus, it can be solar charged and comes with sine wave inverter making it safe to charge phone phones and other such devices.

4 Yamaha EF1000iS
Yamaha EF1000iS
(Best Small Generator)

Blocks noise and has a sound reduction system. Plus, it’s CARB-compliant and offers 900 surge watts of power.

5 HONDA EU1000i
(Best Durable Small Generator)

At 29 pounds, it is light and compact. With Honda’s precision inverter technology, you get 8.2 hours of power at half a gallon of tank.

6 Pulsar G2319N
Pulsar G2319N
(Best Small Generator for the Money)

Quite powerful producing 2300 peak watts and settling in at 1800 running watts. This beauty weighs in at 47 pounds making it easier to carry.

7 Generac 7117 GP2200i
Generac 7117 GP2200i
(Best Small Generator for Tailgating)

At 46 pounds, this generator is quite easy to carry. It offers 2,200 starting and 1,700 running watts and comes with a 10-gallon tank gives you a straight run of 10.75 hours at 25% load.

8 Westinghouse iGen2200
Westinghouse iGen2200
(Best Small Quiet Generator)

Powerful enough to run all essentials at home thanks to 1800 running watts. Plus, it is not very loud and only produces about 52 dB of noise output

9 Imuto M5
Imuto M5
(Best Small Generator for Camping)

This is more of a battery backup and less of a generator, however able to generate power from solar energy. It is easy to use and comes with built-in lithium powered batteries.


1 Editor choice

WEN 56202i – Best Small Inverter Generator


  • EPA III and Card Compliant
  • 79.7cc OHV 4 Stroke engine
  • 2000 starting watts
  • 1700 running watts
  • Produces clean energy
  • Weight: 38.6 pounds
  • Runs up to 7 hours at 50% load
  • Parallel ready
  • 1-gallon fuel tank

WEN 56202i is among the most reliable generators out there and can be a good pick for anyone looking for a unit that can charge laptops, mobile devices, and other such sensitive items. Despite its small size, it is quite powerful and generated 1,700 running watts. This is enough to run a bunch of small appliances including hairdryers, bulbs, and fans.

The unit comes with a 4 stroke OHV 78cc engine which operates at just 51 dB at quarter load, this makes it quieter than a regular window air conditioner. At 38 pounds, it is portable and easy to carry as well. Hence, you will have no difficulty in taking it to your next camping trip.

This model from WEN has features such as low oil and low fuel indicators and automatic shut down. They ensure you have no difficulty in keeping the generator maintained and running. You will not have to manually check when it’s time to add fuel. Plus, it will shut down automatically if it detects low oil levels. This is very important since running a generator in such situations can be bad not only for the generator but for other appliances as well.

Additionally, it has an indicator for overload protection which means your electronic appliances are safe from damage.

Its one gallon tank may be small but it can provide you with 7 hours of straight power at half load. The panel comes with extra ports including a 120V 14A NEMA 5-20R receptacle, one 12V 8.3A DC receptacle, and 5V USB ports.

The eco mode switch allows you to utilize the maximum fuel economy. If this is still not enough, you can make use of the parallel connection to connect two generators and get more power for longer runtime.

  • Comes with a 2 year warranty and nationwide service
  • Works very silently
  • Suitable for sensitive appliances with less than 1.2% harmonic distortion
  • Easy to carry at just 38 pounds
  • Very fuel efficient
  • Low oil and fuel indicators for safety and ease of useCan be heavy on the pocket
  • Can be heavy on the pocket
  • May not be suitable for high altitudes

Champion 4000 Watt RV Ready – Best Small Open-Frame Generator


  • Economy mode
  • Runs at 64 dB
  • 4000 starting watts
  • 3500 running watts
  • Weigh: 81.6 pounds
  • Runs up to 17 hours at 25% load
  • 2.9-gallon fuel tank
  • Parallel ready

The Champion 100302 is an open frame digital hybrid inverter generator which makes it more efficient than similar products on the market. It’s 50% quieter and 20% lighter than your traditional 3500-watt portable generator. It cuts the noise level in half with its unique Quiet Technology.

At 81 pounds, this can be a lightweight addition to your RV and a cost effective power solution as well. Champion has added a recoil start along with cold start technology in its reliable 224cc engine that has 4,000 starting watts and 3,500 running watts.

It gives you a straight run of 17 hours at 25% of load on a full 2.9-gallon tank. This generator operates at 64 dB of noise at 23 feet and has low oil shut off sensor along with a 0.6 quart oil capacity.
Moreover, it has a Quick Touch Panel which makes accessing controls easier and faster while the economy mode lets you monitor power consumption while the unit is in use so you get real-time output. You will also find that this mode enables the unit to run on reduced power providing quieter operations, higher fuel economy and longer engine life.

This Champion, moreover, includes a number of electrical outlets including a 120V 30Z RV TT 30-R, a 12V DC automotive-like outlet which comes with dual USB adapters, cables to charge batteries, and two 120V 20A household outlets 5-20R.

You can also take advantage of the parallel kit that includes a 50 AMP RV outlet as standard and provides a clip on connection so you can increase power and run-time. On the downside, some users find the choke to be trouble.

  • Has a long 3-year warranty with free technical support for a lifetime
  • Uses reliable inverter technology
  • Offers higher fuel economy
  • Comes with a touch panel giving you faster access to controls
  • Quieter and lighter than other open-frame models
  • May not be safe for sensitive appliances

ROCKPALS 300W – Best Small Solar Generator


  • 300 running watts
  • 600 surge watts
  • Pure sine wave converter
  • LED flashlight
  • Solar powered
  • Weight: 7.3 pounds

This ROCKPALS 300W generator is your answer to all your portable and multi-power needs. This unit comes with AC output and starts up at 600 surge watts while settling in on 300 continuous watts. It may not be the most powerful option out there but it has some incredible advantages giving it an edge over other similar products.

You will find multiple power outlets including five DC ports each of 96W 16A power at max, two 21A USB ports, and two 3.0 USB quick charge ports. Additionally, a 7.3 lbs lithium power pack which consists of 3.7V 75 Ah batteries is powerful enough to charge any smartphone 25 times, laptops – 5 times, and a mini car refrigerator for about 3 – 5 hours.


However, what sets it apart is its ability to use solar energy to charge up. However, you will have to buy solar panels separately. We suggest that you invest in Rockpals 100W Foldable panels as they offer excellent perks.

First of all, these panels are made to last for a long time. Moreover, they will help you save money in the long-run as you will not be utilizing power from the grid. In addition to this, since the unit supports simultaneous output and input, you will be able to run it while it charges – hence no worries even if the battery is dead.

Alternatively, the battery pack included can be easily charged within 6-7 hours via a wall socket and the camping battery pack can be charged via your car charger within a few hours.

This unit is suitable for almost all kinds of devices including sensitive appliances as it uses pure sine wave technology that reduces distortion. Included within the packaging are a car charger cable, an AC adapter, an MC4 adapter, and a user guide.

  • Using Rockpals DC converter provides more run-time
  • Comes with 18 months of warranty
  • You can use it as a UPS
  • Supports simultaneous output and input
  • 2 USB ports
  • Extremely compact
  • Solar panels are not included
  • May not work well without a DC converter

Yamaha EF1000iS – Best Small Generator


  • Sound reduction system
  • 1000 starting watts
  • 900 running watts
  • 12 hour run-time
  • Smart throttle
  • Weight: 27.6 pounds
  • CARB compliant

The Yamaha EF1000iS comes with inverter technology which makes it quiet and safe to use. This gas-powered unit will run for up to 12 hours straight without the need to refuel. This means you will be able to enjoy a peaceful sleep without having to worry about getting up in the middle of the night to take care of fuel.

Inverter technology delivers high quality, clean electricity. Hence, you can charge mobile devices and other sensitive appliances without any concerns. A smart throttle load sensor is included which means the device is able to adjust engine speed based on the output load required. To reduce total fuel consumption, there is a dual coil alternator as well.

Yamaha EF1000iS -4

Weighing in at 27.6 pounds, it is portable and has an easy to carry design. In fact, we love how it looks. Its appearance – though not the most important factors – is one of its USPs. But, it does offer some more benefits as well.

The control panel is easy to use and centralized and will offer access to all function at just a push of a button. A unique function of this generator is that it is able to recharge 12 volt batteries easily with its 12 volt DC output; this makes it ideal for the outdoor enthusiast. However, we do wish it had more outlets as it comes with two 110V AC and one 12V DC outlets only.
Furthermore, the generator utilizes noise reduction technology to ensure the smoothest, quietest operation. Plus, it is made of a special noise absorbent glass that reduces the noise even more.

  • Suitable for both indoor and outdoor uses
  • Comes with a 2-year warranty
  • Works quietly and will not disturb you
  • Energy efficient thus affordable to own and run
  • Fuel efficient
  • Safe for all appliances
  • Will not be able to charge larger batteries (supports up to 40 Ah)
  • Does not include a gas drain

HONDA EU1000i – Best Durable Small Generator


  • 1000 starting watts
  • 900 running watts
  • 53-59 dBA of noise
  • Weight: 29 pounds
  • Runs for 6 hours at 50% load
  • Inverter technology
  • Parallel ready

The EU1000i is a 1000 watt generator weighs in at 29 pounds that makes it quite portable and a good option for people who want a generator that is easy to carry around.

It operates at peak efficiency due to its inverter technology that ensures you get access to clean energy. This is why it produces a maximum noise of 59 dB. You can use the generator without having to worry about a noisy environment.

Honda’s precision inverter technology means you get reliable power. In fact, it is as good as the power you get from the power outlets at your home. It can run for 8.3 hours straight on a single 1/2 gallon tank on gasoline (depending on the load). Increasing the load will result in less run-time.

You will face no difficulty in using the generator as it has some amazing features like low oil indicator and automatic shut down. It will let you know when it is time to add oil. This is a very important feature because running a generator when the oil is low can be bad for the unit. Plus, it can even harm other appliances. To ensure nothing like this happens, the generator is equipped with an automatic shut down feature that will shut the unit down automatically to prevent damage.

However, we do wish it had a low fuel indicator as well since it can be quite difficult to check fuel levels since this four-stroke generator only accepts regular unleaded gasoline.
At times when 1000 watts of power isn’t enough you can purchase a second unit and connect both via parallel cable to generate up to 2000 watts.

  • Reliable brand
  • Is compact and portable
  • Works very quietly
  • Has multiple power outlets at the front
  • Fuel efficient
  • The manual is poorly written
  • Lacks a fuel gauge

Pulsar G2319N – Best Small Generator for the Money


  • 2300 starting watts
  • 1800 running watts
  • Runs up to 6 hours at 50% load
  • 1.18-gallon fuel tank
  • Sine Wave Technology
  • Weight: 47 pounds
  • Multiple outlets
  • Parallel capability

The G2319N from Pulsar produces 2,300 peak watts of power and settles in at 1,800 running watts. This is enough power to run a large number of big and small appliances.

However, it may not work very well if you run big appliances due to its small 1.18-gallon fuel tank that only offers a run-time of 6 hours at 50% load. This may not be enough for some people but if you live in a region where power outages are not very frequent then you can consider this beauty.

Other than this, you can make use of the parallel feature and connect two similar generators together to get more power and run-time.

Pulsar G2319N -2

However, thanks to the small fuel tank, it is quite easy to carry around as it weighs only 47 pounds. Do not let the weight fool you, however, the carry case design is extremely durable. You will have no difficulty in carrying it if you ever have to go camping or outdoor trips.

Plus, it isn’t noisy at all and runs at 59 dB. It comes with Sine Wave Technology, which means it produces safe and pure electrical power and is capable of charging your smart devices including mobile phones and laptops. This is very important as some generators produce a lot of distortion which can be bad for sensitive devices. However, there are no such worries with this beauty.

On one side, you will find multiple power outlets including a 12V DC 8A outlet, a 5V DC USB outlet, and two 120V 13A AC outlets. The outlets are placed very nicely which will enable you to use them all at once. However, keep an eye on the total power consumed as it does not inform you about it.

  • CARB compliant
  • The outlets are very nicely placed
  • Quite easy to carry
  • Not loud
  • Suitable to charge and run sensitive appliances
  • Can be heavy on the pocket
  • The fuel tank is not as large as compared to others in the same category

Generac 7117 GP2200i – Best Small Generator for Tailgating


  • 1700 running watts
  • 2200 starting watts
  • TruePower Technology
  • 1.2-gallon fuel tank
  • Weight: 46 pounds
  • 10.75 hours of run-time at 25% loud
  • Economy mode
  • Parallel ready

The GP2200i from Generac weighs in at 46 pounds and is quite easy to move around. Said to be suitable for outdoor use, it can also be a good pick to run home appliances as it starts off at 2200 surge watts and settles in at 1700 running watts of AC output power. This is enough power to manage most household items including multiple fans, bulbs, and even small refrigerators and television sets.

With TruePower Technology, it is the ideal choice to run all your sensitive electronic appliances and tools. There is no risk of damage to the unit or other appliances as it ensures a proper flow of power.

Its 1.2-gallon fuel tank when full gives you a straight run of 10.75 hours at quarter load. Such a runtime is ideal for tailgate parties as well. This, however, may not be enough for some people. If such is the case, you can make use of parallel technology as the unit is parallel ready.Connecting two units will double the run-time and will also allow you to run more appliances. This is a great feature for people who want more power.

The design is ergonomic and makes it easily portable especially due to a built-in handle that makes the job easier. It offers an excellent grip and will not put pressure on our hand or wrist.
However, our favorite feature is the off/run/choke switch that makes it very easy to start and use the unit. Special points go to the economy feature as well. It allows the generator to use less fuel, making it economical to run the unit.

Some other impressive features include low oil and power overload indicators. It has a LED panel that shows information that will make it easier for you to use and maintain the tool. Additionally, it has a good number of outlets, all placed very nicely. We loved the 5V DC USB outlet that can be quite useful when you’re in a hurry.

  • 2-year limited warranty
  • Parallel ready device
  • Fuel efficient
  • Said to be suitable to run sensitive appliances
  • Has an LED indicator for low oil and power overload
  • Some users may not be able to use the two 120V outlets simultaneously

Westinghouse iGen2200 – Best Small Quiet Generator


  • 2,000 starting watts
  • 1,800 running watts
  • 12 hours run-time
  • 1.2-gallon gas tank
  • Weight: 46 pounds
  • Efficiency mode
  • Parallel ready

The Westinghouse iGen2200 is quite expensive but worth the money since it comes with some amazing features. At just 46 pounds, it is quite portable. Plus, it offers enough power to run most of your household essentials. It comes with digital inverter technology that makes it reliable since it operates silently.

Unlike other open frame generators, the iGen2200 can power sensitive appliances such as laptops and mobile phones. It runs at 1,800 rated and 2,200 peak watts at 3% less THD than you find in other models in the same league.

On the side, it offers multiple power outlets including two USB outlets and two 120V 20A outlets.

Westinghouse iGen2200 -6

The engine has a maximum RPM of 5300, which is pretty good. The unit is EPA, CARB and USFS compliant making it legal for sale in California. This is very important because due to stiff regulations, very few small generators are sold in California.

It is extremely quiet at just 52 dB noise output. The iGen2200 gives you a straight run of 12 hours on a 1.2-gallon gasoline tank making it one of the most reliable generators in this regard. With such an amazing performance, you will not have to worry about having to refuel the unit in the middle of the night. It will go on for a good few years. This has become possible thanks to a unique Efficiency Mode that improves fuel efficiency and makes the generator affordable to run.

  • Fuel efficient
  • Comes with a 3-year warranty
  • Excellent customer support including free technical support
  • Is EPA and CARB compliant
  • Comes parallel ready for iGen2500, iGen1200 and WH2200i XLT models
  • Does not include a fuel gauge

Imuto M5 – Best Small Generator for Camping


  • Built in Lithium ion batteries
  • Advanced design power inverter
  • 100 running watts
  • 160 surge watts
  • Multiple voltage output modes
  • Weight: 2.82 pounds
  • AC, DC and solar power sources
  • 50000mAh

Imuto M5 is the lightest and most portable generator on this list as it weighs only 2.82 pounds. This makes it the best option if you want a portable generator that you can carry along. It takes little space and is easy to store.

While it may look small, do not let the size fool you. It comes with a high capacity battery that uses M5 technology to ensure safety. The external battery charger can charge a number of smart devices safely.

It can charge your iPad 3 times over, the Galaxy S7 8 times, and the new MacBook 3 times over before you will need to charge it again. Its smart protection system ensures your sensitive appliances remain safe.

It comes with advanced design power with inverter technology and includes 8 output ports, each at 100 watts of maximum power. These include a single 3.0 QC USB charger, one fast input 12-24V DC charger, three 5v 2.4A USB outputs, and 4 extra DC outputs including two 12V 5A outlets, a single 19V 4A outlet, and one 9-12.6V 15A outlets.

The company has included a wide array of output modes with 10 different adapter plugs which are compatible with a laptop power bank. Moreover, the device is energy efficient and has three large power high brightness spotlights for aviation. You can use that M5 battery charger for back-up power when outdoors.

As this power station is a solar generator as well, you can make use of solar panels to charge the inbuilt batteries and ensure you can charge small devices in remote areas. Just note that the imuto 60W Solar Panels  are sold separately.

While it is a good option, remember that it isn’t your everyday generator that you use at home to run microwaves or fans. It’s ideal for camping and outdoor trips to charge small appliances such as laptops so that you can remain in touch with your loved ones. However, it cannot charge small devices that require under 1A current (smartwatches, headsets, etc.)

The device is technologically advanced and comes with a digital display that shows information about the battery and how much power is remaining. This way you will know when it is time to charge the battery again. These features make it the best small generator for many.

  • Among the lightest options out there
  • Ideal for outdoor use
  • Comes with 1.5 years of warranty
  • Looks pretty good
  • Does not come with an AC inverter
  • Solar panels are sold separately

Buyer’s Guide

We’ve reviewed each of the nine best small generators in detail for you and hope that you now have a better understanding of what small generators can provide.

While all these options are great, remember to always pick one according to your requirements. To help you in this regard, we have created a buyer’s guide that’ll help you pick the best small generator.

Let’s begin.

9 Best Small Generators-3

Power Requirements

Small generators do not offer a lot of power, hence they will not be able to run bigger appliances like air conditioners and large refrigerators. However, most can support mid-sized and small appliances such as blenders and small television sets.

Here is an easy power guide to help you understand how much power you’ll need to run the most commonly used household appliances:

  • Blender 500 watts
  • LED Bulb 12 watts
  • Smartphone 6 watts
  • Electric Shaver 15 watts
  • Laptop 100 watt

If you want to charge two laptops and run a blender, you will need a generator that offers at least 700 running watts. Most generators on this list will meet this requirement, but if you’re buying one then why not spend a little more money and get something as reliable as Pulsar G2319N that has 1,800 running watts and 2,300 surge watts.

Remember that there is a difference between running and surge watts and you must concentrate on both. Also, consider if a generator offers parallel capability so that you can increase power if needed.

Pulsar G2319N

Fuel Economy

Being fuel efficient is an important feature of a good small power generator; after all, they do not support huge gas tanks. The best of them will adjust fuel consumption and balance it out with the power load. Almost all the generators we have reviewed today come with inverter technology; this makes them fuel efficient and also reliable at the same time.

Another feature you might want to look into in order to assure efficient fuel consumption is Sine Inverter; this technology allows you to run items with higher wattage such as microwaves and other motors.

The ROCKPALS Pal 300W features a pure sine converter. Plus, it also supports solar energy.

Westinghouse iGen2200 -3

Ease of Use and Movement

Most people buy small generators since they are portable, hence this factor is of huge importance. Look for a unit that is easy to lift. Most small generators are under 50 pounds and some even come with handles for easy carrying.

Since the weight of a generator isn’t necessarily tied to the amount of power it generates, you will not have to worry about this feature. Our pick would be Honda’s EU1000i. It is light and portable at just 32 pounds.

However, ease of use is also important. Go for a generator that comes with features such as low oil indicators so that you know when it is time to replace oil. The Champion 4000 watt RV ready, for example, has this and many other features that make it fun and easy to use.

9 Best Small Generators


Go for a generator that is safe to use so that there is no risk of accidents or damages. Generators with little distortion and Sine Wave Technology are said to be reliable in this regard.

They ensure you can charge sensitive appliances such as phones without the risk of damage to the system. Our top pick here would be ROCKPALS 300W. It offers clean energy and some other great benefits.

9 Best Small Generators-1

Number of Outlets

Look into the number of outlets it has so that you can run all the appliances that you need. The Pulsar G2319N offers multiple outlets including USB ports and AC/DC outlets. This is why some think it is the best small generator for the money.


Q: How durable are small generators?

A: Size has very little to do with durability. Make sure the generator is made from durable materials to ensure it runs smoothly. Other than this, how you use the product also decides its durability. If you maintain it properly then it will run for a long time.

Q: How to maintain a small generator?

A: Make sure there is enough oil as a lack of oil can damage the engine and reduce its life. Plus, keep the engine clean. If parts of your generator are made of iron then it may catch rust, hence pay special attention to this factor.

Other than this, follow all the tips given in the manual or guide as some generators require special maintenance.

Q: How much does a portable generator cost on average?

A: You will find that prices vary. You can easily find some good units under $150 but most reliable generators will cost about $800. Also, some brands are known to produce very expensive items – over $2000.

Q: How can I avail warranty?

A: This depends on which product you have. Most sellers require that you register the product to finalize the purchase. Your purchase or warranty may not be considered valid if it isn’t registered.

In order to avail the warranty, you will have to get in touch with the company or official service centers. They will explain the process to you.

Q :Is it safe to connect two generators?

A: Yes, it is. However, make sure to only use compatible generators and keep an eye on total output so that you never exceed it. Other than this, only use a high quality and original parallel connection wire.

Q: Can I use the best small generator in the rain?

A: Depends on which brand you have. Some generators are suitable for outdoor use and come with special covers.

WEN 56202i


We’ve listed the nine best small generators for you to pick from. If it were up to us, we would go for the WEN 56202i, not only is it EPA III and CARB compliant, this generator also comes with built in inverter technology which means it offers efficient fuel consumption. It starts off with 2,000 surge and settles at 1,700 rated watts, which makes it possible to operate a large number of appliances.

While it is a great option, other generators on the list are also good. Go through them all and pick what you think is the best small generator.

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