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Size & Power

5 Best 5000 Watt Portable Generators of 2022 – Ranked Generator

In today’s world, it’s almost essential to have backup plans for everything; especially when it comes to electricity since you never know when the next power outage is coming and how long it will last. To be on the safe side, you’d want a generator – probably a portable unit.

Portable generators are the ones that can handle a regular blackout. They come in different amounts of wattage. However, portable generators that have a wattage of around 5000 are capable of powering the common household electrical appliances and devices. Also, they don’t take as much space as the 9000W or 10000W generator that makes them suitable for RVs as well.

Here, we will review five of the best 5000 Watt portable generators and share our user experience with you. We will also give you a few tips on how you can pick the perfect portable generator for your home, RV or for camping out of the numerous available options.

Top 5 Best 5000 Watt Portable Generators Reviewed

01 DuroMax XP5500EH Portable Electric Generator (Best Overall)

uroMax XP5500EH Electric Start-Camping & RV Ready

Why It Stands Out to Us

The DuroMax XP5500EH is one of the best portable generators you can find on the market. It’s a well thought unit that features a sleek design and an all-metal construction. This model works like a dream and produces enough power for all the necessary appliances of your home at once. It runs on both gasoline and propane.

Despite having all these amazing features and functionalities, this unit doesn’t fall heavy on the wallet. If you’re looking for a great portable generator on a budget, our #1 pick is the best you can get.

Our Experience With the DuroMax XP5500EH

  • We were satisfied with the design. The construction and the build materials seemed sturdy enough to last a long time.
  • The user guide was well-written and had all the information needed for the maintenance. The setup was effortless and it was ready to run just after 15 minutes of the unboxing.
  • It facilitates both electric and pull start. Both of the starting options were pretty accurate. We could start the engine on first attempt with both.
  • One of the most fascinating things was the dual fuel feature. We tested it with both gasoline and propane. We noticed that the performance was better using propane. The unit didn’t come with a hybrid switch. So, we had to shut off the gasoline valve while we were on propane.
  • We were well-pleased with the power outlets. It features every essential outlet that you can expect from a generator of this price range.
  • For testing the runtime and power output, we powered two LED TVs, an AC, a PS4, a sound system, several light bulbs, 2 fans, a coffee machine, 2 cell phone chargers, and some other small appliances with the unit. At a full load, the device ran for about 9 hours before totally emptying the tank. You can easily make it 20 at least if you use less than half load.
  • We tested the XP5500EH in an RV and took it with us on a five day trip. We used all of the appliances available in the vehicle. The generator powered them all throughout the time like a champ.
  • Considering the weight, it was surprisingly easy to push or pull with the two handles. The wheels worked great as well. We were happy with its portability overall.
  • The low fuel shut off was spot on. We tested this feature on several occasions and the unit switched off every time the tank ran out of fuel. We can assure that this model won’t harm your appliances if it runs low on oil.
  • Though this doesn’t operate silently, we can confirm that the noise level is acceptable. DuroMax did an amazing job in suppressing the noise. The vibration seemed well managed too.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Doesn’t perform evenly on both fuel options
  • Uses an analog voltmeter instead of a digital one

What Could Be Improved

  • A digital voltmeter could be included into the unit
  • There could be a hybrid switch
  • DuroMax could have added another pair of wheels to the generator. It would have enhanced the portability of the device.

Our Recommendations

  • Use a fuel stabilizer with the gas. Though this won’t affect the performance or enhance the quality of the fuel, it will increase the longevity of the engine.
  • If you regularly run your unit on propane, make sure to use gasoline at least once a month to prevent the oil seals from drying out.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 22x 25x 22 inches
  • Weight: 142 pounds
  • Color: Blue/Black
  • Output Wattage: 5000W
  • Fuel type: Gasoline, Propane
  • Tank Volume: 4 Gallons
  • Engine: 224cc
  • Warranty: 1 year

Pros

  • Great design and build quality
  • Dual fuel
  • RV ready
  • Portable
  • Low fuel shutoff
  • 1 year warranty

Cons

  • Not equally efficient in both fuel options

02 Durostar DS5500EH Portable Generator (For the Quietest Operation)

Durostar DS5500EH Portable Generator

Why It Stands Out to Us

Being the quietest on our list, this unit provides outstanding performance in all departments. With a sleek all-metal finish, it presents a great appearance. It comes with a dual-fuel feature that allows you to use either gasoline or propane to run it. With an amazing output, this bad boy is capable of powering a wide range of electrical appliances in your house or RV.

Overall, the Durostar DS5500EH is the workhorse of a generator. If your main concern is noise, this is the one to go for.

Our Experience With the Durostar DS5500EH

  • We loved the design and the overall build quality. The all-metal construction looked strong enough to last for a long time.
  • Setting up this generator was a piece of cake. It took us less than 15 minutes to set it up. The manual seemed very well-written. You’ll find the book very helpful if you give it a read.
  • We were impressed by the fact that the DS5500EH features both electric and pull start. The switch worked perfectly. The device started on the first pull and throughout our time with it, it hardly needed a second pull to start.
  • The dual-fuel system was on point. From our experience, we can assure you that it performs equally on both fuel options.
  • For testing the runtime and output, we powered multiple appliances with this. We used two LED TVs, a Mac Pro, a sound system, an AC, 2 fans, some light bulbs, a router, phone chargers, and a guitar amp. For testing it on half load, we used half of these devices. We ran the unit for 9 hours before the gas tank was emptied.
  • We tested the Durostar DS5500EH in an RV and used all the available gadgets in the vehicle. It powered all of them like they were nothing.
  • This model was one of the quietest portable generators we used. We were impressed by the lack of noise. Though not completely silent, we can assure you that conventional generators usually don’t come as quiet as this one.

What We Didn’t Like

  • This model doesn’t come with a DC outlet.
  • The filling port for fuel is positioned poorly.

What Could Be Improved

  • The manufacturers could add an hour meter

Our Recommendations

  • Because the filling port is oddly placed, we suggest you use anti-spill funnels for filling the tank.
  • If you generally use propane, make sure to use gasoline at least once a month so the tank doesn’t dry out completely.
  • Use stabilizers with fuel to enhance the longevity of your generator.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 25x 22x 22 inches
  • Weight: 129 pounds
  • Color: Red/Black
  • Output Wattage: 5500W
  • Fuel type: Gasoline, Propane
  • Tank Volume: 4 Gallons
  • Engine: 225cc
  • Warranty: 3-year limited

Pros

  • All metal construction
  • Dual-fuel capacity
  • Electric start
  • Portable
  • Quiet
  • Amazing runtime

Cons

  • No DC port
  • No hour meter

03 Champion 5500 Watt Portable Generator Wheel

Champion Power Equipment 100231 6900/5500-Watt Dual Fuel Portable Generator

Why It Stands Out to Us

Doing justice to the company name, this model is truly a champion in terms of power and efficiency. It comes with sturdy construction and an eye-catching design. Also, it has a dual fuel feature, which means you can either use gasoline and propane to run it. With an incredible amount of wattage, it produces enough juice to run a wide range of appliances.

No matter what fuel you use or what type of home you live in, it will come in handy whenever you need an additional source of power. This generator comes at an affordable price compared to the other units of the same size and wattage available on the market. So, if you’re thinking of getting a portable generator, go for this one and your wallet will thank you.

Our Experience With the 100231

  • Like most Champion Power Equipment generators we used, this unit seemed well-thought and designed. We loved the buffed look on it. The build material was satisfactory as well.
  • It gave us good vibes since we opened the box. We gave the manual a read before we started doing our tests and we were very impressed by how detailed the manual was. We could set it up in 15 minutes. We filled the tank and the generator was ready to go in no time.
  • The manual start was pretty accurate the first time. We could start it in just two pulls. The cord wasn’t hard to pull and we could start it in just two attempts.
  • In terms of power outlets, it had plenty of options available. We can assure you that in this price range, you won’t get better options regarding power outlets.
  • We tested the runtime on several occasions with different amounts of load. We powered a refrigerator, 2 fans, 2 TVs, a coffee maker, a router, some cell phone chargers, and a PS4 with it. We used all of the devices in turns and sometimes all at once. We kept the generator on for two days at a stretch and didn’t notice a single disruption the entire time.
  • We took it with us on a road trip and used it in an RV for about 4 days. We used a TV, an AC, several lights, fans, a guitar amp with several pedals, laptop and cell phone chargers, and some other small devices during that time. We were impressed by how well it held up.
  • One of the best things about this model is that it runs both on gasoline and propane. We used both and found out that the difference in fuel options doesn’t affect the performance. Besides, the fuel safety switch seemed on point.
  • Though the dual-fuel feature seemed flawless, we noticed that if you drain the battery out, or if the battery is taken out, you can’t start the generator on gasoline. You’d need propane for it to work again.
  • For conducting different tests, we had to move the unit a lot. We noticed that the wheel kit made it extremely portable despite having a good amount of weight.

What We Didn’t like

  • While operating, this model makes a loud noise.
  • It Doesn’t have an electric start.
  • Though it sells as a portable generator, the handle isn’t big enough considering its weight.

What Could Be Improved

  • This would have been a better product overall if the operational noise was a little less.
  • An electric start option could be added.
  • The manufacturers could have added another pair of wheels. This would make a huge improvement in the portability department.

Our Recommendations

  • Recharge the battery depending on your use for long-lasting performance.
  • Make sure you buy longer chords. This will allow you to keep it at a distance from your residence if the noise is too annoying for you.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 27x 27.7x 24.4 inches
  • Weight: 162.5 pounds
  • Output Wattage: 5500
  • Fuel type: Gasoline, Propane
  • Warranty: 3-year limited

Pros

  • Durable material
  • Safety fuel switch
  • Dual fuel feature
  • Portable
  • 3-year warranty

Cons

  • No electric start
  • Loud

04 Champion 6250 Watt Frame Inverter Technology

Champion Power Equipment 100519 6250-Watt Open Frame Inverter

Why It Stands Out to Us

This model has performance written all over it. It comes with a muscular construction and a sleek design. This unit is 50% quieter and 20% lighter than the previous models of the manufacturer. Also, it has an ECO mode, which runs with less fuel and makes less noise. With a running wattage of 5000, it can power a wide range of appliances in your home.

The noise and vibration of this device are managed well. So, it’s more than suitable for a regular sized RV. No matter what kind of home you’re living in, the Champion Power Equipment 100519 can be a great addition to it.

Our Experience With the Champion Power Equipment 100519

  • The first thing we noticed was its beefy construction. We loved the design. The overall build quality was satisfactory and the materials seemed sturdy enough to last for a long time.
  • Setting up was simple and easy. Champion Power Equipment did a great job in making the user manual. We found all the instructions needed for the setup and maintenance. The generator was all set for running within a short period.
  • The recoil cord was very easy to pull. We tested the starting mechanism several times and every time we were able to start with one pull.
  • We tested the runtime with excessive load and after about 18 hours of running at a stretch, the unit showed no sign of stopping anytime soon.
  • We powered a whole bunch of appliances with the 100519, including one LED TV, a 15000 BTU air conditioner, a PS4, a sound system, router, a refrigerator, two cell phone chargers, and several other small electric devices. We were worried about our gadgets at first but the generator juiced all of them with perfection.
  • In terms of noise and vibration, we were more than happy with this model. Though not whispering silent, it produced less noise than other generators of the same size and wattage. The manufacturers did a wonderful job in suppressing the vibration. It’s a no-brainer that the 100519 can be a great addition to a regular-sized RV.
  • We were totally satisfied with the power outlets. It came with one 120/240V outlet, four 120V outlets, and a 12V DC outlet.
  • The ECO mode was quieter than the normal power mode. We used the ECO mode while using a 50% or less load. We conducted a comparative test between the two modes and the result showed that the ECO mode used less gas with the same amount of load. However, we don’t recommend using the ECO mode with more than 50-60% load.
  • The surprising fact is this unit is so easy to move though heavy. The wheels and the handle worked perfectly while transporting the generator.
  • We loved the items that came with the package. The flexible oil funnel and the USB adaptor were the most useful of the bunch.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Considering the price tag, we expected an electric start but this model didn’t feature it.
  • Some users have complained about the unit not performing well after a year of use.
  • Despite being an inverter generator, it wasn’t as quiet as we expected.

What Could Be Improved

  • The manufacturers could include a remote start or at least an electric start.
  • It would have been a much better unit if only the noise was suppressed a bit.

Our Recommendations

  • Don’t use the microwave and the ac at the same time.
  • Make sure to cut the fuel off after use
  • Buy and use fuel stabilizers for getting the best out of the unit. This will increase the longevity of the generator.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 26.6x 25.6x 23.7 inches
  • Weight:121 pounds
  • Output Wattage: 6250W
  • Fuel type: Gasoline
  • Tank Volume: 4 Gallons
  • Certifications: EPA, CARB
  • Warranty: 3-year limited

Pros

  • Amazing design and build quality
  • Stable, clean, and reliable power
  • CARB compliant and EPA certified
  • ECO mode
  • Reasonable price
  • 3-years warranty

Cons

  • Not silent
  • No electrical start

05 A-iPower SUA5000 5000 Watt Portable Generator

A-iPower SUA5000 5000 Watt Portable Generator Small Gas Powered For Jobsite

Why It Stands Out to Us

The A-iPower SUA5000 is one of the most efficient generators you might find today. With a metal body and amazing design, this beast of a unit generates enough juice to power a wide range of electric appliances of both your house and RV. It features a gas tank that can hold enough fuel to keep the engine running for 6-9 hours at ease.

Apart from all these utilities, this portable generator also comes at a comfortable price range. If you’re looking for a well-rounded portable generator, try this one and you won’t regret it.

Our Experience With the A-iPower SUA5000

  • Straight out of the box, we loved the design and build quality of this generator. The construction was mostly made of metal and the frame and the fold-out handle looked solid to stay intact for years to come.
  • The manufacturers were spot on with the user manual. The SUA5000 was all set within just minutes after the unboxing.
  • We were pleased with the startup. It started almost instantly after one push on the start button, which is often not the case for many generators out there. We used the pull cord as well and it started on the first pull.
  • While testing the runtime, we kept the generator on for about 13 straight hours. Surprisingly it stood up well against the challenge.
  • During those 13 hours, the unit consumed less than 7 gallons of gas. Though it wasn’t anything out of the ordinary, we were still satisfied with the fuel consumption considering the price tag.
  • It powered a double door refrigerator, a 65” LED TV, a sound system, 2 PS4s, a router, 2 standing fans, 3 box fans, 8 lambs, and two cellphone chargers all at once. We were afraid that our devices might get fried in the process but none of them were damaged during the test.
  • We were happy with the power outlets. It had two US standard 120V 20A outlets, one RV standard 120/240V R30 outlet, and one 12V 8.3A outlet. All of the outlets came with rubber covers. From our experience, we can confirm that you don’t get much more than that in this budget range.
  • It was really effortless to move the SUA5000 from one place to another. Though it wasn’t the lightest portable generator we used, the wheels and the handle made it an easy one to transport. Also, the tank wasn’t bulky at all, which kept it compact.

What We Didn’t Like

  • Though it’s not built to run inside the house, we still weren’t pleased with the noise it makes while running.
  • Some users found the start button difficult to push.

What Could Be Improved

  • A wattmeter and a voltage meter could have been added. This would make it a way better generator.
  • The manufacturers add dual-fuel capabilities into the generator.

Our Recommendations

  • You won’t be able to adjust the damper bolt if you’ve already installed the support leg. So, our suggestion would be to adjust the bolt at first and then install the support leg.
  • If you don’t use generators that often, make sure you charge the battery once a month so that it’s already juiced when you need it.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 24.4x 19.1x 21 inches
  • Weight:117 pounds
  • Color: Red
  • Output Wattage: 5000W
  • Tank Volume: 4 Gallons
  • Engine: 223 CC
  • Warranty: 2 years

Pros

  • Great design
  • Amazing power delivery
  • Reasonable price
  • Long runtime
  • Durable
  • Sufficient power outlets

Cons

  • Loud
  • No dual-fuel capabilities

Best 5000 Watt Portable Generator – Buyer’s Guide

5000 Watt Portable Generators

1. Fuel Options

All generators usually run on either petrol or diesel. Petrol-fueled generators are the most popular of the two variants in today’s market because they’re cheaper and have more designs available compared to diesel engines.

On the contrary, diesel-fueled generators have their own perks and benefits. Typically used for powering bigger devices or areas, they’re more fuel-efficient than their counterparts.

Both of the available options have their own set of prowess. Just make sure to choose the one that suits your requirements.

2. Engine and Power Output

In terms of power output, you need to know two simple things about a generator – startup watts and running watts. Usually, generators use up to 2-3x the running wattage during the startup. So, if your heater needs 1500W to run, it will require 3000-3500W for startup power. Check both types of wattage before buying a portable generator.

3. Power Outlets

Make sure to determine what kind of outlets you’ll need before buying a generator. Smaller generators usually have two 120V outlets (AC) and about 2-3 USB ports. Generators with bigger wattage (starting from 4000) will have 240V plugs and more 120V outlets. Before going for a specific model, check if the outlets have GFCI protection. This will ensure the safety of you as well as other electronic devices in your home.

4. Fuel Tank Size and Runtime

It’s not rocket science that a generator with a bigger fuel tank will operate for a longer period. Most generators nowadays have tanks that’ll give you at least 7-9 hours of service at a half load. The runtime can even be extended if you don’t use a greater portion of the accessible power.

A huge fuel tank might do you some good but remember that it’ll also affect the portability of the generator.  Normally, a generator with a bigger tank will be heavier and less portable. So. Considering these facts, determine the tank size you need in your generator.

5. Operational Sound

You’ll find a lot of generators on the market with extremely low noise levels. But unfortunately, all of them will lack in the game of wattage. All generators with a wattage of over 4000 will make an audible noise while running. Another thing you need to know considering noise- diesel-fueled generators are louder than the ones that use petrol.

6. Starting

If you’re fond of pulling recoil cords for powering up engines, avoid buying the ones with electric start. This will save you a few bucks. The starting method doesn’t affect the performance of the device, rather it just depends on the taste of the user.

No matter which one you choose, make sure you charge the battery before use. Modern generators use lithium-ion batteries. So, leaving the generator plugged in between uses shouldn’t be a problem.

7. Paralleling Capabilities

Paralleling is simply connecting 2 generators of the same size and (in most cases) brand together for doubling the power. By paralleling two generators, you can combine the wattage of the two units and get an increased amount of wattage into your electronic devices. All you need is a parallel cable and you’ll be all set to merge two generators.

However, not all generators come with this fascinating feature. Models that have paralleling capabilities will cost you more than normal. Remember, you’ll need another unit same as yours for even testing this feature. So, determine if you really need paralleling capabilities in your generator before splashing the extra amount of money.

8. Safety

Modern generators come with different safety features that protect both you and the unit from harm. While purchasing a portable generator, check if it has the features below-

a) CO Shutoff

You may see manufacturers using alternative terms like “CO Guard” or “CO Protect” while referring to this feature. No matter what they call it, this feature uses CO sensors to detect the level of Carbon Monoxide and shuts off the unit immediately if the amount of the gas goes beyond a certain level. Instead of falling for marketing strategies, check if the unit you’re planning to buy has ANSI/UL2201 certifications for assurance.

b) Low-Fuel Shutoff

This feature switches the generator off if the oil in the tank falls below the minimum levels. Though this is a more common feature than the previous one, you should still check this before you go for a specific unit.

9. Warranty and Certifications

You’d surely want your generator to operate without any issues for years to come. Opt for units that come with a warranty that satisfies you. Most brands offer at least 2-4 years of warranty for their products.

For assurance of the safety and certain features, make sure to check if the unit you’re considering getting has these certifications –

a) ANSI/UL2201 Certifications for CO Shutoff

b) ANSI PGMA G300 Certifications for performance and safety

Conventional vs Inverter Generator – What Type of Portable Generator to Buy?

A conventional generator is a basic fuel-powered machine that generates electricity. These units use an alternator to convert mechanical energy into AC current. Conventional or regular generators can use different fuel types such as; diesel, propane, and gasoline.

Though these generators produce a great amount of power, they fail at maintaining a steady flow of current, which can be dangerous for electronic devices like laptops, mobile phones, DSLR cameras, and so on. This is the point where they fall behind their counterparts-the inverter generators.

An inverter generator also uses fossil fuels. The only difference is, these generators convert the type of electricity twice, unlike the conventional ones. At first, mechanically generated AC current is turned into DC current with the help of an alternator. Then, the built-in inverter converts that DC electrical current into AC current again, making the flow of current to be stable.

There are multiple advantages to the inverter generators over the traditional ones- they’re more fuel-efficient, more compact, portable, and generate steady current. On the other hand, the advantages of conventional generators are- they’re cheaper and they produce more power.

How to Maintain and Keep My Generator Safe

Your generator, just like the rest of your electronic devices, needs maintenance so that it doesn’t break down or need frequent repairs. With more care and attention, your generator will last longer and function better. Research on generators proves that properly maintained generators last 2-3 times longer than the ones without regular maintenance. Here’s how you’ll maintain and keep your generator safe-

Maintenance Needs

  • Always keep your generator clean and make sure you put some kind of cover on it when not in use
  • Empty the tank after a long session of use and never reuse old gas
  • Monitor the wattage capacity regularly
  • Purchase and store backup filters and fuel

Safety Protocols

  • Never run your generator in enclosed spaces or indoors
  • Don’t run it in the rain
  • Before you refuel it, make sure the generator is turned off and cooled down
  • Make sure your generator comes with CO shutoff

FAQs

Q. 1: What are “starting” and “running” watts?

Ans: Running watts is the amount of power that a generator can produce throughout the entire time of operation. On the other hand, starting watts is the power a generator supplies only for a short period, typically during startup. Usually, while starting, a generator needs around twice the amount of power that it needs while running. That’s why manufacturers share information on these two types of wattage.

Q. 2: Can I use a 5000W generator on my RV?

Ans: All 5000W generators produce enough juice for powering an entire kitchen, a small ac, lights, a small heating unit, and so on without using all of its power. So, a 5000-watt generator should be enough for a regular-sized RV.

Q. 3: What is an Eco-mode in an inverter generator?

Ans: Eco mode allows the engine to adjust the RPM volume automatically and produce just as much power that’s needed. You can refer to it as the “power saving mode” as well.

About the author

Jamie Masterson

With decade-long experience as a generator technician, Jamie has worked with USA’s top generator manufacturers and suppliers as an independent contractor.

The long years of service to the industry has taught Jamie the ins and outs of troubleshooting, repairing, and maintaining all kinds of generators in home, industrial and outdoor settings.

Jamie thinks this platform is a great opportunity to share his tips and tricks with you so you can make the most of such power equipment for better living.

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