Gasoline Generators For Home Use

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Gas vs. Propane vs. Diesel Generators

During power outages, generators become essential as they are capable of running not only running your whole house but also your RVs, offices, and construction sites.

You can also power your off-grid parties and campsites. But which of the generator is best to use? And the answer is the gasoline-powered generator.

If you reside in an area where the temperature does not go too low, you can use gasoline. Also, gasoline is more efficient than propane and cleaner as compared to diesel. Also, gasoline-powered generators give decent runtime. 1.2% THD rating.

10 hours runtime at 50% load. Low-oil shutoff sensor.

Pull start system.
Engine and Power Wattage: The best gas-powered inverter generator is the Westinghouse iGen2200 that is featured with a 79cc 4-stroke Westinghouse OHV engine.
If we check its power output, then it produces 2200 peak watts and 1800 rated watts.
THD Rating: Less than 3% THD rating makes this unit suitable for powering sensitive electronics.
This Total Harmonic Distortion measures the harmonic distortion available in a signal.
Weight and Warranty Period: Its weight is 46 pounds, and it offers a 3-year limited warranty.
Operational Sound: The operational sound of this generator is 52 dB (A).
Tank Capacity and Runtime: You will get a runtime of up to 12 hours on a 1.2-gallon gas tank, thanks to its efficiency mode that changes the engine speed as you increase or decrease the load.
  • This helps in saving fuel and extending the runtime.
  • Parallel Operation: Westinghouse iGen2200 is also parallel capable that allows you to connect another inverter generator to generate more output power.

Best Gas Generator Reviews

You can link iGen1200, iGen2200, iGen2500, and WH2200iXLT generators with the help of the Westinghouse parallel cord.

Start System: Recoil start mechanism (Pull Start).

Power Panel: The power panel of this generator has many things to offer. There is an engine/fuel control switch, efficiency mode switch, parallel outlets, circuit breaker, and low oil, overload, and output ready indicator lights.

Also, if we focus on power outlets, then there are two 5V USB ports and two 120V AC 20A outlets. Safety: It is featured with a low-oil shutoff system and overload protection.
Pros: Westinghouse iGen2200produces clean power output. It is highly fuel-efficient and operates only at 52 dB (A). It is also light in weight and offers a 3-year limited warranty.

THD Rating: Its 1.2% THD rating is less than the THD rating of Westinghouse iGen2200. Weight and Warranty Period: The weight of this portable machine is 48 pounds, and it features a 2-year limited warranty. Tank Capacity and Runtime: WEN 56200i is featured with a 1-gallon gas tank that gives up to 6 hours of runtime at half load. Parallel Operation: Use the WEN 56421 parallel connection kit to link two WEN 56200i units to double the output power.

Operational Sound: It operates at 52 dB (A). Start System: You have a recoil start mechanism to turn the generator on. Power Panel: There are two 120V 20A outlets, one 12V DC outlet, and one 5V USB port. Also, its control panel has an eco-mode switch, parallel operation outlets, engine switch, and three-light indicators (Overload, Output, and Low-oil). Safety: Overload protection and low-oil and low-fuel automatic shutdown. Pros: WEN 56200i is also a light unit that can be moved easily. Its less than 1.2% THD rating makes it extremely safe for sensitive electronics.

Buyer’s Guide

Also, it is a budget-friendly option.

Cons: It takes time to start after refueling. Engine and Power Wattage: Champion 100110 is a conventional portable generator that is powered by a 459cc Champion single-cylinder OHV engine.

It can give higher power output with 11,500 watts of peak power and 9200 watts of running power. Tank Capacity and Runtime: On a full 7.7-gallon gas tank, you will be able to power your appliances and tools up to 10 hours at half load.
This intelligauge tells you runtime, volts, and frequency. Operational Sound: Champion 100110 is a loud unit that operates at a decibel rating of 74 dB (A).

Volt Guard is responsible for protecting the generator and your equipment from surge power. Weight and Warranty Period: Its weight is 270 pounds. Pros: Champion 100110 is a powerful conventional generator that can power both of your small and high-power appliances and tools. It features an electric start system and a Volt Guard for protection.

Cons: Its sound rating is on the higher side. Engine and Power Wattage: The 208cc, 7HP Durostar 4-stroke OHV engine produces 4000 starting and 3300 running watts. Weight and Warranty Period: Its warranty period is of 3 years, and it weighs 94 pounds. Power Panel: There are two 120V household power outlets and one 120V 30A twist-lock outlet.

What are the benefits of a gas-powered generator?

Also, its power panel features a voltmeter and an engine switch.

Operational Sound: The super quiet muffler keeps the operational sound of this generator at 69 dB (A). Tank Capacity and Runtime: You will get 12 hours of runtime at 50% load with a 3.96-gallon fuel tank.

Start System: Durostar DS4000S features a pull start system. Safety: It features surge arrest technology and a low-oil shutdown system. Pros: Durostar DS4000S conventional generator also comes with a 3-year limited warranty.
Start System: Start this Pulsar PG1202S with a pull start system. Engine and Power Wattage: Its 72cc 2-stroke engine has the capacity to produce 1200 peak watts and 900 rated watts.

Power Panel: Two 120V AC outlets and one 12V DC outlet along with an engine switch and a light indicator. Operational Sound: The operational sound of this generator is 65 dB (A). Safety: Overload protection is for the safety of the generator. Pros: Pulsar PG1202S is a compact and lightweight unit that is extremely inexpensive. It gives decent runtime and operates without making much sound.

Cons: There is no low-oil shutdown sensor or indicator. Also, it is not an inverter generator. Pro Tip: Do you know tri-fuel generators support all popular fuel types? Check these generators here. Type of Generator. Which type of generator are you planning to buy? Either you want to buy an inverter machine or a conventional generator?

Inverter generators provide clean power, whereas most of the traditional units fail to give clean output power.

Inverter generators are parallel capable that allow other units to get linked to produce more power. On the other hand, a single conventional generator can generate more power than two inverter generators.

Also, most conventional generators are inexpensive than inverter units. But most of the inverter machines make less noise during operation.
And if there are not enough items to run, then you can go for a mid-power or low-power generator. Make a list of those things that you need to power through your generator, add their watts, and then buy a suitable machine accordingly.

Don’t worry about the starting load as you can manage this by putting the appliances one by one on the generator. By buying a smaller generator, not only will you save some money on initial purchase cost, maintenance/repair costs are also low for a small generator. Look for a generator that comes with a well-equipped control panel. On an excellent model, you will find power outlets, plugs, transfer witch, and RV ready options and displays for showing the total running hours, fuel and oil gauge, and wattage drawn from the generator.

Generators do produce a sound that can make you feel uncomfortable. Therefore, it is necessary to select a unit that can keep you relaxed all the time. Inverter generators operate quietly, so it is best to go with these units. But if you need a powerful gas generator, then you have to compromise on the noise level. Still, many companies are adding sound-dampening features to keep the sound level on the lower side.

Also, you can keep the machine away from you, if possible, to hear as less noise as possible.

How can you find out the power rating of appliances to select the best gas generator accordingly?

Gas inverter generators come with small fuel tanks, but they give the best runtime because of their fuel-efficient engines.

So, the size of the tank only matters when you go for a conventional unit.

Paralleling Ability. Paralleling generators mean connecting two generators to get more output and manage machines with heavy running/starting wattages.


Paralleling conventional generators is difficult. For inverter generators, it is a simple task of just connecting two cables.
Low-oil shutdown sensors and overload protection are the two common safety features. Where the low-oil sensor turns off the engine when the generator’s oil goes down, on the other hand, overload protection is responsible for protecting your equipment from high spikes in voltage.

Ease of Transport. No matter whether your generator is compact or a big sized unit, it must be easy to transport. When selecting an inverter unit, make sure its carrying handles are comfortable. And at the time of selecting a big conventional unit, ensure it has big, durable wheels and convenient handles. You should also focus on the power outlets of your generator. Make sure the power outlets available can power those things that you want to run through your generator.

Warranty and Certifications. Look for a generator that comes with a warranty and certifications. Such features enhance the value of your generator and help save the repair costs after buying a generator. A high-end gasoline model will be costly as compared to a basic model. Inverters are usually costlier compared to conventional generators but have more features and produce clean electricity.

What are the drawbacks of a gas generator?

Conventional generators are a little cheap but don’t have the luxury of clean electricity and paralleling mode.

We suggest you spend a little extra and go for a generator with all the latest features. In terms of efficiency, gas generators are ahead of propane generators and behind diesel generators.

Gas burns slower than propane and faster than diesel in large generators. You would need to keep the load at half to get an optimum running time.
A gas generator makes less noise than a diesel generator, and its noise can be reduced with the help of a generator enclosure/high-quality mufflers.

They have been around for quite a time now and are the go-to option of millions of fellow Americans. Gas is readily available throughout the year unless there is an infrastructural breakdown due to a natural disaster. You can store gas for up to a year for such times. Gas tanks are also easy to carry for smaller generators, hence making them highly portable.

Understanding a gasoline generator’s engine and other parts is easy compared to a propane/diesel/solar generator. You must connect a generator to your home with a transfer switch. Skipping it can cause electrocution, damage to your appliances or generator.

4. Durostar DS4000S Portable Generator – Under $350

If you are using extensions with a generator, make sure you buy a high-quality extension.

No, there is no difference between regular gasoline and unleaded gasoline.

You can easily purchase regular gasoline or unleaded gasoline from the gas station.

It is necessary to know how to find out the power rating of appliances to make sure how powerful your generator must be to run all of your appliances.
But before using this formula, make sure the appliances you are going to power run on 120V or 240V.

So, it is necessary to check the oil regularly, you can find the best generator oils here. Store your generator in a safe place when not in use. Also, if there is a fuel shutoff option, then never forget to run your generator from time to time without gasoline to prevent stale gas issues. Gas has a short shelf life as compared to diesel and propane. It will go stale after 11-12 months of storage.

The fuel is also highly flammable, and there is always the risk of spillage and fire when working with gas. Gas generators are no doubt cheaper than propane generators, but they have a high running cost. When gas is burnt in a generator, the exhaust is not environmentally friendly.

Final Verdict

Buying and selecting a gas-powered generator has now been made easy for you.

3. Champion 100110 Portable Generator

Do I need a transfer switch with a gas generator?

You can select any of the above-mentioned generators and forget the tension of staying in blackout ever again.

To know how many watts you’ll need in a generator, add up the wattage of the appliances or equipment you’re most likely to simultaneously operate. This will give you an idea of the load that your generator will need to be able to handle.

Pay attention also to starting watts versus running watts. Many appliances require a larger surge of power during start-up compared to their running energy consumption. If you don’t factor in the starting watts, you may overload the generator as you start up appliances or other items. Generally, you only need to add in the highest starting wattage to your total watts required—since you likely won’t be starting every appliance or device on your generator simultaneously.

Increased watts of power will generally equate to an increased cost when shopping for a generator, but it is better to have adequate power than to be left in the dark or have to decide between running your refrigerator or keeping cool with a fan.

1. Westinghouse iGen2200 Portable Inverter Generator – Best Gas Inverter Generator

Home generators require space for installation, so factor in the size of any model you're considering. The size of a generator ranges from compact units with a footprint less than 3 feet long to large liquid-cooled units that measure 5 feet or more in length. As a general rule, the more power capacity, the larger the generator will be.

Also, keep in mind that model specifications and local codes may dictate how much clearance is required between the generator and your home. Some small generators require as little as 18 inches of clearance.

2. WEN 56200i Portable Inverter Generator – Gas Inverter Generator under $500

Generators generally are powered by one of three fuel sources—gasoline, natural gas, or propane.

Gasoline-powered generators are the most common but also carry special cautions related to exhaust fumes and carbon monoxide poisoning. Always make sure to operate a gas generator outside of any enclosed structure (including your house or garage) where there is adequate ventilation.

You’ll also need to take measures to keep gasoline stored properly for long periods of generator inactivity. A fuel stabilizer is one method of ensuring that the gasoline in your generator remains ready for use.

Propane and natural gas are more commonly used for larger home standby generators. These fuels are generally also considered to be cleaner burning sources of fuel and provide an on-demand source of power.

Alternatives to fuel-powered generators are solar or battery-powered models. The capabilities and run times of these machines vary greatly, but they may be the right match if you have more minimal power needs. Many battery-powered generators are also a safe indoor alternative for a supply of power.

What is meant by unleaded gasoline? Is it different from regular gasoline?

The investment you make in a generator is often backed by a manufacturer’s warranty. Most residential portable and inverter generators are protected by a two- or three-year warranty period that covers parts and labor. Standby generators, which are generally a larger investment, usually offer three- or five-year warranty periods.

Some warranties will also cover travel costs for a technician to come and service the generator, but this varies by manufacturer and model so read the fine print closely to see what will be covered in this regard.

5. Pulsar PG1202S Portable Generator – Lightweight

Decide which type of generator is best for your needs: a standby (or backup) generator or a portable generator. For whole-home generators, a standby generator is the most common option since it offers power outputs between 10,000 and 24,000 watts on average. This type of generator is permanently installed outside the home and is connected to a propane fuel tank or natural gas line. With the addition of a transfer switch, standby generators are ready to supply power for a few hours or a few days or more thanks to a readily available fuel supply and high wattages. Within standby generators, you'll find air-cooled and liquid-cooled models. Residential homes with average power needs will be served well by an air-cooled unit, but in hot climates, a liquid-cooled generator may be a better choice. In addition, liquid-cooled generators generally offer a quieter operation.

Portable generators are temporary backup power solutions. They typically operate using gasoline as their fuel source. For this reason, it’s crucial that you never operate a portable generator inside an enclosed space—including your house, garage, or shed. This type of generator is best suited for powering an appliance or two and smaller tools or electric-powered items, like fans or lights. The higher the watts of the generator, the more load it can support. In general, portable generators will make life more bearable but won’t support all the creature comforts you may be used to during a power outage—such as a central air conditioning system, water heater, and other large appliances. Inverters are another type of portable generator that uses less fuel and offers quieter operation but has a higher price tag.

Is it necessary to do the regular maintenance of a gas-powered generator?

Automatic Start

Some whole home generators will automatically kick in when the power goes out. This automatic start feature enables the generator to start supplying power to your home’s electrical grid without the manual start-up process often associated with portable generators.

Having a generator with an automatic start function may be especially valuable if you travel for long periods of time or have a second home. The peace of mind that comes with knowing your generator will automatically step in to keep vital systems functioning (like a sump pump and heating and cooling system) is worth the higher price tag that often comes with these systems.

Note that this isn’t the same thing as an electronic start, which is the ability to start your generator with the push of a button rather than the recoil start typical of most small motor machines. In the case of a generator equipped with an electronic start, you’ll still need to manually start the generator to begin the flow of power.

Transfer Switch

If your plan is to be able to use your generator to power hardwired appliances, then look for a machine that can be installed to work with a transfer switch.A professionally-installed transfer switch will safely disconnect your home from the power grid and supply power from your generator to designated circuits on your home’s electrical grid.

Never plug your generator into a standard electrical outlet—doing so can create electrical hazards, including back feed that can endanger utility workers that may be repairing power lines.

  • How do you safely run a home generator?

    A whole-home generator needs to be connected to a transfer switch—which will disconnect your circuit panel from the electrical grid before allowing power to flow from the generator through the circuits. Unlike portable generators which require you to manually initiate the power transfer, home standby generators equipped with automatic start and connected to a professionally installed transfer switch can make the transition happen seamlessly and usually respond within 10 to 15 seconds of a utility power failure.

    Portable generators require different safety precautions, including the often-repeated advice to never operate the unit inside of the home or garage. You should also never plug hardwired appliances into a portable generator or plug your generator into a standard electrical outlet. If you want to supply power to hardwired appliances, invest in having a transfer switch professionally installed by an electrician. You’ll need to manually flip a few switches to safely take your home off the power grid and switch to the generator’s power source, but this is the only safe way to supply power from a generator to your home’s electrical circuit and hardwired appliances.

  • Where is the best place to put your home generator?

    Since home generators produce exhaust fumes that contain carbon monoxide, choosing the right installation spot is important for health and safety reasons. Because of this, local codes and utility companies will typically dictate placement requirements. Generally speaking, however, a generator should be installed at least 5 feet from windows and doors. Some generators can be installed as close as 18 inches to the house, but you'll still need the 5-feet of clearance from air intake locations on the house.

    Portable generators should never be used indoors, including in a garage. Even with doors and windows open, the fumes can be dangerous. Instead, this type of generator should be positioned outside of the home with sufficient clearance from doors and windows. Typically, 20 feet or more is recommended. Extension cords are used to supply power to the appliances and devices you want operational.

  • What regular maintenance should be performed on a home generator?

    The manufacturer of any generator you purchase should provide basic maintenance information, but in general, it’s recommended that you do the following for most models of generators.

    • Perform a weekly self-test or run the generator for at least 30 minutes once per month. Most whole-home generators feature an automatic self-test cycle that runs for 15 minutes or less each week. For portable generators, you'll need to run the system manually. Doing so will keep the motor and components from seizing up and becoming prone to breaking or failure. Make sure that you only operate the generator in a well-ventilated, open area—even during these short maintenance runs.
    • Add fuel stabilizer to the tank when storing a gasoline-powered generator for an extended period. This additive will help ward off corrosion, rust, and sediment. Gas that has gone bad is a leading cause of small engine failure, so don’t neglect proper fuel storage.
    • Regularly repair or replace motor components that are subject to wear and tear. Items like spark plugs, air filters, fuel filters, and more can become worn over time.
    • Never let the oil run low in your generator and perform regular oil changes. Doing so can cause major engine damage or even failure of the motor. Monitor oil levels and replenish as necessary. Many standby generators have a meter for engine hours, so you'll know when it's time for an oil change.

Why Trust The Spruce?

Erica Puisis has been covering home appliances and tools that make everyday life easier. With experience investigating the best home generators and portable generators and developing buying guides that help consumers make informed choices, she is familiar with the features that matter and the brands that offer reliable performance. To find the best home generators for this list, she considered factors like power output, size, fuel type, and cooling system. Most of the generators on this list are whole-home generators, but portable and battery generators are included for short-term supplementary power needs.