HomeBuying GuidesToolsHow To Buy The Best Portable Petrol Generator - Updated 2022

How To Buy The Best Portable Petrol Generator – Updated 2022

Looking to buy the best Portable Petrol Generator? Check out our guide below and you’ll be well-placed to select the right one for you.

When you need extra power or in an emergency, a portable generator is a wise investment. Power generators, which can run small appliances, lights, and other devices, making it simple to stay connected in situations where you might need some extra juice.

The most important factor in selecting the best portable generator is your power requirements. What are your plans for using the generator? Is it for camping or for emergencies? What gadgets are you going to power? Generators are rated by watts; the higher the wattage, the more power they produce. For enough power or constant use, many items, such as modest home appliances, require higher ratings.

What kind of portable generator are you looking for?

Do you require a “rescue” generator because you frequently have power outages at home? Are you looking for a portable generator to use when camping or travelling in your RV? Are you looking for a way to run power equipment on a jobsite where there isn’t an electrical supply?

It’s a huge topic, but the answer isn’t always obvious – because we typically want a portable generator to do multiple functions.

To have a better picture of what the portable generator must perform, let’s look at power usage first.

Demands for power
Even the largest portable generator won’t be able to operate everything at once if you go around your house and take a fast inventory of electrical use.

The average home’s electricity consumption ranges from 10,000 to 20,000 watts. A permanent stand-by generator, hard-wired by an expert, is required to run everything. It’s the type of item that can set you back anywhere from $2,000 to $10,000. You can use a portable generator as a backup power source until the main power supply is restored. It can run much more than simply basic essentials, depending on the size.

There are different calculations to be performed depending on whether it’s for work or enjoyment, but the same idea applies. Here are a few examples of typical items to get you started. You can easily perform the math: the wattage demand of every electrical device you own should be listed on it somewhere.

Lamps require 60 to 120 watts of power.

A sump pump requires between 750 and 1,500 watts of power.

A refrigerator requires between 500 and 750 watts of power.

Computers require 60 to 300 watts of power.

Heaters require 500 to 1,500 watts of power.

A coffee machine requires between 750 and 1,000 watts of power.

300 to 600 watts are required for halogen work lights.

Electric drills require 500 to 900 watts of power.

When it comes to electricity consumption, there’s another factor to consider. When most electric devices are first turned on, they have a higher demand – this is known as “surge.” It might be anything between 2 and 5 times the usual operating demand. That’s why portable generators are rated at 3,300 running watts and 4,000 starting watts, for example. The latter is the maximum surge it can handle.

The main thing to remember is that a surge only lasts a few seconds, and you don’t have to turn on all of your electrical appliances at the same time.

Switch on your lights, wait a time, then turn on your refrigerator, and so on to manage surge. That way, they won’t all surge at the same time, generating an overload.

Portable generators come in a variety of shapes and sizes.

Most portable generators are essentially the same and convert mechanical energy into electricity using either a gasoline or propane motor.

Portable inverters work on the same idea as desktop inverters, but they’re smaller, lighter, and more quieter thanks to special mufflers, fuel injection, and other ingenious methods. They’re perfect for outdoor parties, camping, tailgating, and RVing because of this. They frequently have automatic power fluctuation controls, which makes them ideal for delicate electrical gadgets.

Inverters have two disadvantages. For starters, the power output is smaller, ranging between 1,000 and 3,000 Watts. Second, they are reasonably priced.

Efficiency of portable generators

Now that you know how much power you’ll need, how long will your portable generator last? Will you be able to leave it for the entire day, or will you need to replace the gas tank every few hours?

Manufacturers of portable generators are happy to provide run times, but you must be cautious. The advertised values will rarely, if ever, match the generator’s full capacity. “12 hours at 1/4 load” or “8 hours at 50% capacity” are examples of phrases you’ll notice.

To be honest, portable generators rarely operate at top efficiency for lengthy periods of time, so the manufacturers aren’t lying, even if they are portraying things in the best possible light!

You should also think about how much power you’re using. When the power you’re using is 7,000 watts, ten hours at 50% from a portable generator generating 3500 watts is not the same as ten hours at 50% from a portable generator delivering 3500 watts.

Expert Advice
Manufacturers rarely mention the amount of time a generator can run at full power. The amount of hours the generator will run is more commonly given.

Liquid propane or petrol

The portable generators we’ve picked all run on petrol. There are lots of versions that use liquid propane as an alternative. The main reason none of these made the cut is because of the lack of fuel storage.

Among the petrol-powered devices we’ve chosen, the largest tank is 7.5 gallons. A similar propane model necessitates the use of numerous 20-pound tanks for the same amount of time.

You must not only have the space to store them, but you must also change them out more frequently.

Features of a portable petrol generator

Although determining how much power you require will narrow your options, there are still a plethora of portable generators fighting for your cash. Here are some of the characteristics to look for.

Starting out is simple.

The generator should have decompression for easy starting if it has a ripcord. The greatest portable generators don’t have a cord at all; all you have to do is turn a key or press a button.

Fuel level indicator

It’s convenient to be able to verify fill levels without having to remove the filler cap.

Expert Advice
Keep a supply of additional oil on hand. It’s critical to keep an eye on the oil level in your generator. If you run the generator without oil, it will quickly become damaged or useless.

Warning about the oil level

Running out of oil can do major damage to your machinery.

Sensors for throttle

Throttle sensors allow units to alter performance based on load, resulting in increased fuel efficiency and run time.

Wheels

Some portable generators come with wheels as an add-on. Wheels aren’t designed for portable inverters, but that’s not a problem when the unit weighs less than 20 kilogrammes. Wheels, on the other hand, are a must when a model weighs more than 40 kg.

Several power plugs

You’ll get one or more 120V AC outlets, depending on the model. A DC outlet (helpful for charging batteries), a particular RV outlet that you can plug directly into your RV’s electrical circuit, or a 120/240V 30A (also known as twist lock) that may be compatible with transfer switches are all possibilities.

Transfer switches, which should be installed by a certified professional, allow you to plug your portable generator directly into your home’s electrical supply, allowing you to run only one wire instead of multiple extension cords through doors and windows.
Safety when using a portable generator

You’ve certainly heard it a thousand times before, but it’s especially crucial in this case: always follow the manufacturer’s instructions! For starters, generating fumes are hazardous. Second, if you do not properly care for and maintain your portable generator, it may fail you when you need it most.

The following points may be covered in those instructions, but they deserve to be highlighted:

When your generator is running, manufacturers recommend a minimum of five feet of unobstructed space on all sides.

It should be run outside at all times. A garage or shed that has its door and windows open is not considered to be outside. In enclosed environments, carbon monoxide can build up. It’s odourless, colourless, and deadly.

Expert Advice
Indoors, including sheds and garages, a portable generator should never be used. For dangerous carbon monoxide to evaporate efficiently, there must be enough open space.
STAFF\sBestReviews

When the portable generator is hot, never fill the gas tank. Spilled gas can ignite if it comes into contact with a hot exhaust or casing. Because it’s nearly imperceptible, it can burn you or the items around you before you realise it.

Never fill the gas tank to the top; always leave room for expansion.

Never put your generator away until it is fully cool after usage.

Never try to plug your generator into a standard outlet. Not only in your home, but throughout the local network, “back feed” might result in electrocution or fires. Ask a suitably qualified technician to install a transfer switch if you want the choice of a fixed connection.

Make sure your portable generator isn’t overloaded. Consult an electrician if you’re unsure.

Make sure your generator is grounded properly. Grounding must be done in accordance with all applicable federal, state, and municipal rules. You risk being electrocuted if you don’t.

To avoid a surge against the generator, turn devices on one at a time, pausing for a period between each.

What should the price of a portable generator be?

Our top picks are all well-reviewed products with a lot of favourable feedback from owners. In terms of pricing and performance, they’re also typical of what we’d call “best in class.”

When it comes to portable generators, you get what you pay for.

For under £300, you can get a sturdy, dependable entry-level machine. That’s a fantastic price, but we recommend investing an extra £100 or so for a device with a similar power output but a more comprehensive feature set.

Do you want to go big? Our higher-priced options provide much more power production as well as exceptional reliability.

Inverter generators are a little different because they are often more expensive than “regular” generators.

Best Portable Petrol Generators To Buy

Bestseller No. 1
Briggs & Stratton 030801 Petrol Portable Inverter Generator PowerSmart Series P2400, 2400 Watt/1800 Watt Clean Power, Ultra Quiet and Lightweight
  • Quiet and fuel efficient 79cc OHV petrol engine produces 2400 starting watts and 1800 running watts in a compact design.
  • The inverter technology produces smoother power. This means you can safely recharge and power your sensitive electronics such as laptops, smartphones and gaming systems.
  • 3.8 litre fuel tank for up to 8 hours of continuous operation at 25% load.
  • Automatically adjusts engine speed based on the items you're powering. Quiet Power Technology further reduces noise, fuel consumption and emissions.
  • At 58dB operating volume, this portable generator is quieter than a normal conversation. (Sound levels may vary based on proximity and location; measured at ¼ load at 7 meters from control panel side).
Bestseller No. 2
Böhmer-AG WX3800K-E Portable Petrol Generator 3.0Kw 12V DC Output Electric Key Start Outdoor 3.8 kVA 7Hp 4-Stroke OHV Engine with 2 UK 240V Standard Plug Sockets
  • 24 Month Warranty - free to call UK based technical support line
  • Copper Wound Motor - offering unparalleled power and current stability
  • Green & Fuel efficient - offers up to 10 hours run time from a single 15 litre fuel of fuel
  • Helpful Features - easy recoil and electric key start, automatic low oil safety shut down, overload detection
  • Your Power Supply - two 240V 3 pin UK plug outputs and a 12V DC output to suit a variety of power supply needs
Bestseller No. 3
maXpeedingrods 3100W Portable Inverter Generator Petrol Silent Pure Sine Wave Generator for Camping, RV Travel,Home,or Jobsites
  • 【Powerful Inverter Generator】 Quiet and fuel efficient 4 stroke 145cc petrol engine produces 3100W max watts and 2800W running watts to run a huge range of high-power appliances such as air conditioners, refrigerators, kettles at the same time, and up to 8.3 hours running time.
  • 【Portability & Safety】Compact in design so that it easily fit in your car, boat or RV. Whether for outdoor camping, outdoor wedding, RV travel or family power failure. It is a good friend you can rely on. And the inverter generator with overload warning and low oil protection for safe operation even over a longer period of time.
  • 【ECO Mode】Reducing fuel consumption and reducing noise. When select eco mode, allow the generator to idle when no power is being drawn, reducing fuel consumption and stress on the engine while improving cost efficiency.
  • 【Extremely Quiet】Quiet operation with a noise level only 58 dB at a distance of 7 meters.
  • 【The Inverter Technology】 This inverter technology provides more steady power, produces clean power to safely operate and prevent damage to sensitive electronics such as phones, tablets, televisions and computers.
Bestseller No. 4
Böhmer-AG i2500W Petrol Inverter Generator 2000w Pure Sine Wave Instant Power 4-Stroke Engine Silent Noise Quiet Portable Camping 240V DC with UK Plug Sockets
  • Generators set with 24 months warranty and free customer service team on hand to assist with any queries that you may occur. Our goal is to resolve any problem that might arise.
  • Copper-wound motor 2000 watt provides up to 10 hours of clean, dependable electricity, empowering you to build, cater, clean, or perform for longer with 10 litres of fuel.
  • The AG i2500-W durable frame protects and houses a powerful 120cc, 4 Stroke engine that consumes minimal fuel offering unparalleled energy and current stability
  • Convenient functions: The low oil protection system will automatically protect your engine by cutting out the machine if your oil level is too low.
  • This 22kg highly portable generator has two built-in 240V AC UK plug sockets and a convenient 12V DC terminal set is ideal for your additional power needs.
Bestseller No. 5
Hyundai Portable Petrol Inverter Generator, 1000W, 50cc Silent Generator with 3 Year Warranty
  • Impressive Power: Produces a maximum output of 1000w / 1kW for powering appliances such as televisions, laptops, air compressors and more.
  • Compact and Lightweight: Compact, lightweight and portable, allowing you to store it in car boots or caravan cupboards, and carry it with ease.
  • Easy Start : Powered by an easy start 50cc 4 Stroke Hyundai Engine providing reliability you can trust each and every time
  • Eco Mode : The eco mode facility lowers the engine revs to increase fuel economy and lower noise while also extending the engine lifespan.
  • LED Screen : Providing an easy to read display of the voltage, frequency and the hour count
Bestseller No. 6
RocwooD Inverter Generator Petrol 2000W Watts Portable Camping FREE Oil Quiet Silent Caravan Motorhome Outdoor Home 230V Lightweight UK Plug Compact 4 Stroke
  • The RocwooD RG5000I portable generator has super-clean inverter technology. Whenever you need dependable power on the go, you’ll be impressed by just how easy it is to start and just how quietly it gets the job done.
  • The RocwooD RG5000I Generator is powered by a single cylinder OHV four-stroke air cooled engine. The Inverter produces 100% clean pure-sine power that is capable of running sensitive electronic equipment.
  • You can look forward to 1600 watts of continuous power output, with 2000 watts on tap to cope with the initial draw experienced when starting some appliances. This generator can run a huge range of appliances and is ideal for camping.
  • The RocwooD RG5000I also boasts an impressive running time of 6 hours at half load. Outstanding reliability and power output at the price. And, if you require even more power, you can connect another RG5000I with a parallel kit. The RG500I Inverter generator has two approved 230V 16AMP outlets, a USB socket, automatic overload and low oil protection, and idles at just 63 decibels on a 50% load.
  • It also offers exceptional starting ability in any conditions. So whether you plan to enjoy home comforts on your next holiday, or want a generator on hand for power tools on the job site, your next camping trip, an outdoor party or power outages, the RocwooD RG5000I is a workhorse you can rely on.
Bestseller No. 7
Nassboards Portable Suitcase Inverter Petrol Generator 4 Stroke 6.5HP 2000W 12V 230V – Pure Sine Wave – Includes 0.5L Bottle of 10W-30 Oil, Spark Plug Removal Tool, DC Charging Wires
  • COMPACT GENERATOR: This portable generator is compact, lightweight, and offers great value for money and premium quality to boot. With a powerful 4 stroke engine there’s no need to mix fuel since the Portable Inverter runs on standard petrol, providing a minimum of 5 hours running time (on eco mode). It’s simple to use, and anyone of a suitable age can operate this inverter. Simply fill with petrol, prime the generator, pull on the cord and you’re ready to go
  • HUGE CAPACITY: This generator provides 230V AC power and a max output of 2000w, enabling you access to a reliable power source when you need it most. It’s a must have accessory for camping, caravans, outdoor events, sporting events, boats, power tools, weddings, fishing, hunting, construction, in case of emergencies, and so many more uses. It’s there for you when you need it most, providing a perfect back up to domestic power in case of power cuts during severe weather and storms
  • EXCELLENT PORTABILITY & SAFETY: Although small in size and super lightweight, the Inverter Generator packs a powerful punch. It weighs just 21kg, so it’s a breeze to transport and store, and compact in design so it will easily fit in your car, boat or RV. With a shutdown feature on low oil, and an overload protection, the Inverter Generator provides power and safety. With Nassboards, you’ll also receive a 0.5L bottle of 10W-30 Oil, Spark Plug Removal Tool and DC Charging Wires
  • PURE SINE WAVE POWER: The 2000w Generator has advanced Pure Sine Wave technology, which produces a constant voltage and frequency stability of between + or -1%, the same quality of clean electricity that you typically get from your electric company. With 2 standard UK 3 pin socket and a 12v DC Output, it’s ideal for powering sensitive equipment with microprocessors such as computers, phones, tablets, TVs, game consoles, printers, DVD players, even kitchen appliances and power tools
  • REDUCED NOISE: This generator is quiet in operation compared to large traditional generators, with very low fuel consumption allowing it to run for hours on a single tank on economy mode. The Economy throttle automatically adjusts the engine speed to match the load for greater fuel efficiency and a lower noise level. The economy switch will also allow the generator to idle when no power is being drawn, reducing fuel consumption and stress on the engine while improving cost efficiency
Bestseller No. 8
Böhmer-AG WX5000K-E Portable Petrol Generator 7.5Kw 12V DC Output Electric Key Start Outdoor 9.4 kVA 13Hp 4-Stroke OHV Engine with 2 UK 240V Standard Plug Sockets
  • 24 Month Warranty - free to call UK based technical support line
  • Copper Wound Motor - offering unparalleled power and current stability
  • Green & Fuel efficient - offers up to 10 hours run time from a single 25 litre fuel of fuel
  • Helpful Features - easy recoil and electric key start, automatic low oil safety shut down, overload detection
  • Your Power Supply - two 240V 3 pin UK plug outputs and a 12V DC output to suit a variety of power supply needs
Bestseller No. 9
Hyundai Petrol Converter Generator, 3.6kVA, 3000W Portable, Lightweight, Portable Power Generator,
  • ◼️ New 3kW converter generator from Hyundai- lightweight and compact.
  • ◼️ Powered by the 212cc, 4-stroke recoil start petrol engine.
  • ◼️ Weighs only 26.5kg compared conventional generators that are 50% heavier.
  • ◼️ 1 x 230v 13A 3 Pin Socket
  • ◼️ Full UK spares backup & service support
Bestseller No. 10
Briggs & Stratton 030801 Petrol Portable Inverter Generator PowerSmart Series P2400, Clean Power, Ultra Quiet and Lightweight & 100007E 4-Stroke Summer Motor Oil SAE 30 1 Litre
  • Product 1: Quiet and fuel efficient 79cc OHV petrol engine produces 2400 starting watts and 1800 running watts in a compact design.
  • Product 1: The inverter technology produces smoother power. This means you can safely recharge and power your sensitive electronics such as laptops, smartphones and gaming systems.
  • Product 1: 3.8 litre fuel tank for up to 8 hours of continuous operation at 25% load.
  • Product 1: Automatically adjusts engine speed based on the items you're powering. Quiet Power Technology further reduces noise, fuel consumption and emissions.
  • Product 2: Briggs & Stratton's range of oil products gives you everything you need to lubricate your outdoor power equipment petrol engines

Honest Bob is committed to providing genuine guides from a panel of experts. As an Amazon affiliate Honest Bob earns commission from any qualifying purchases.Thank you for your support!

Must Read