The Best Generators for Your Home - Buying Guide

Mark Jones
  Feb 7, 2023 10:36 AM

The best generators can be the perfect option if you just can't afford to experience even a brief loss of electricity or don't want to deal with the inconvenience of regular blackouts. It supplies your home with backup power so that all of your key systems can continue to function. In this buying guide, we’ll show you how to choose the best generators for your home for both convenience and safety.

Honda 664240 EU2200i 2200 Watt Portable Inverter Generator with Co-Minder

Much of North America received warnings about an increased chance of power disruptions throughout the previous summer. Even if it appears that the fear of a blackout was mostly avoided, you can still look for a safety net if you think that losing electricity poses a greater risk for you than it does for most other people.

Honda 664240 EU2200i 2200 Watt Portable Inverter Generator with Co-Minder

Using a backup generator, also referred to as a backup battery can help you survive a power loss, whether that's for your fridge to keep functioning to maintain your medication's coldness or you simply do not wish to cope with the disruption.   You should have a clear grasp of your needs and the attributes of a generator that best meet them because generators are not a one-size-fits-all answer. In the guide below, we have the essential  queries and responses, along with a summary of the safety issues.

Looking for the best generators? Here’s the list for your consideration. 

For more details, check out this article for more options on finding the best generator for home

Buying Guide

Before we dig deeper into the buyers’ guide of the best generators, let’s look into the definition of a home generator. 

What is a home generator?

An appliance that can provide electricity for your house, place of business, or while you're on the go is a generator. Generators don't actually produce power, despite what their name suggests. Instead, they transform another type of energy into electricity.  

When there is a power outage because of bad weather, broken power lines, or any other danger, generators can be utilized to supply supplemental power to your home or company. They can also be utilized to supply power on the go, such as when camping or touring in an RV.

Types of Generators

You must first decide on the type of generator you want before making your decision. There are three main types of generators, including inverter, portable, and standby generators.  

1. Inverter Generator

An inverter generator resembles a portable one in that it's more compact and portable. But compared to a typical portable generator, inverter generators are frequently even more lightweight. Additionally, because they are quieter, they may be suitable for a broader range of activities, such as camping.

Standard portable generators and inverter generators produce different types of electricity and have different power capacities, portability, noise levels, and price ranges. Although they are more expensive and typically produce less power, inverter generators are more portable, more silent, and emit less pollutants.

Best Inverter Generators of 2023

We also have a separate article on this topic, including the Best 240 Volt Inverter Generator Suggested by Experts in 2023. 

2. Portable Generator

As the name implies, a portable generator is the one that can be moved around easily. These generators can be moved easily to provide electricity anywhere because they are usually designed with wheels. Even smaller versions may be handheld instead of having wheels, adding even more to their mobility. Portable generators are usually gasoline-powered and less expensive than  standby generators. 

Best Portable Generators of 2023

More information on the best portable generators can be found in the following articles written by our experts.

2. Standby generator

An alternative to a portable generator is a standby generator, which is more long-term. It is much bigger and more expensive. It is permanently fixed at your house or place of business instead of being easily transportable. The standby generator automatically starts up when your power goes out to keep you powered. In addition to being able to run on natural gas, standby generators are commonly fuelled by propane instead of gasoline.

One certified electrician that we spoke with claims that a lot of the safety issues with portable generators are resolved by standby generators. And although they are the most expensive, it might be an option if safety is your major priority.

Best Standby Generators of 2023

The prices of generators

Standby generators are the most expensive of all generators, with prices ranging from hundreds to thousands of dollars. You should prepare at least $2,000 and maybe as much as $10,000 for a standby generator. With portable generators, you may have to spend anywhere between a few hundred dollars and a few thousand dollars.  The good thing is that they can be purchased easily due to their availability at almost every home improvement store, including Lowe's, Home Depot, Ace Hardware, and others.

Key Takeaways

Choosing a generator is a time-consuming process. We'll go over some of the most essential aspects that can guide your decision-making in the sections below.

1. Power Requirements

The amount of electricity you require is among the most crucial factors to take into account when selecting a generator. Consider your intended use for the generator as you try to find the answer to this question. Portable generators that are less strong might be more suitable for small appliances. A standby generator, on the other hand, may supply power to your whole house.

2. The purpose

It's important to consider what you'll be utilizing the generator for in addition to how much electricity you need it to produce. Selecting a generator for a camping trip is significantly different from selecting one to power your home during a power outage. As we previously stated, standby generators are permanently installed at your home and supply backup electricity during a blackout. On the other hand, a portable generator may be transported anywhere you go. For better portability, an inverter generator that's more lightweight and less noisy can be a better option.

3. Source of Fuel

In general, there are three ways to fuel a generator. The options available to you will depend on the model and type of generator you select. First, the most commonly used fuel for portable generators is gasoline. Both standby and portable generators can be fueled by propane. Last but not least, standby generators can run on natural gas, while portable generators cannot. 

4. Cost

Your budget will ultimately determine which generator you use. Keep in mind that portable generators are typically less expensive and more affordable than standby generators.

5. Other features

A generator offers a wide range of features. Consider which characteristics are most essential to you and which are less important before selecting the best generators. Below are several features to be aware of in generators:

  • Automatic CO shutoff: This safety feature turns your generator off automatically if it notices a dangerous amount of gas accumulating. Both of your family and your safety depend on this feature.
  • Electric start: With an electric start, you only need to press a button to turn on your generator instead of having to pull the engine to start it.

  • Automated start: You might want an automatic start if your generator is designed to power your house during a blackout. If the electricity in your house goes out, it will automatically start your generator.

  • Fuel gauge: With a fuel gauge, you can quickly check to see how much propane or gasoline is remaining so you'll know when to refuel your generator.

  • Multiple outlets: You can spread out the wattage use by plugging in a number of items or appliances into your portable generator's multiple outlets.

  • Low-oil shutoff: This function shields your generator from damage by shutting it down instantly if the oil falls below a certain level.

Compare Products

TOP Choice
1
TOP Choice
2
TOP Choice
3
4
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    9.6
  • Brand
    Honda
5
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    9.4
  • Brand
    WEN
6
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    9.2
  • Brand
    DuroMax
7
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    9.2
  • Brand
    WEN
8
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    9.2
  • Brand
    DuroStar
9
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    9.2
  • Brand
    DuroMax
TOP Choice
10
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    9.2
  • Brand
    DuroMax
11
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    9.2
  • Brand
    Champion Power Equipment
12
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    9.2
  • Brand
    Generac
13
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    9.2
  • Brand
    WEN
14
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    8.8
  • Brand
    A-iPower
15
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    8.8
  • Brand
    AIVOLT
16
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    8.6
  • Brand
    GENMAX
17
  • MS Score

    MS is a ranking system developed by AffiliateCMS.com. MS score has no relationship or impact from any manufacturers or sales agent websites. Learn more

    8.6
  • Brand
    GENMAX

Last update on 2023-02-07 / Affiliate links / Images, Product Titles, and Product Highlights from Amazon Product Advertising API

FAQs

1. What’s the best generator to be used at home?

The power needs of your home and your most vital appliances, including: refrigerators, well or sump pumps, air conditioners, medical equipment, portable space heaters, and electric water heaters will determine the best generator to purchase for residential use.

2. How much power should a generator have in order to run a house?

The typical home generator power capacities start at 10,000 watts and increase from there since the typical U.S. home requires between 5,000 and 7,500 watts to operate.

3. How long can a generator run a whole house?

Theoretically, a home generator with an unlimited fuel supply and no mechanical problems could operate until it requires routine maintenance. Similar to a car engine, a generator engine needs maintenance including belt replacements, oil changes, and other similar repairs.

Final Thought

Westinghouse 12500 Watt Dual Fuel Home Backup Portable Generator, Remote Electric Start, Transfer Switch Ready, Gas and Propane Powered, CARB Compliant

When picking the best generators, many factors must be taken into account. But when you take all of the information above into consideration, it will be more simple for you to select the generator type and model that suits you the best. If it’s too noisy, it might be better to use a portable power station instead of a generator. These articles will help you learn more about portable power stations.