The Best Generator Brands of 2022

Finding the right generator for your home, RV, or job site begins with selecting a reputable brand.

By Tony Carrick | Updated May 6, 2022 3:30 PM

The Best Generator Brand Options

Photo: amazon.com

When a storm strikes and the power goes out, a good generator can prevent hours in the dark and a fridge full of spoiled food. Depending on its size, a portable generator can provide up to 15,000 watts of energy, enough to keep the lights on and power the air conditioner and refrigerator. However, a generator is only as good as it is reliable. With so many brands on the market, finding a model that provides dependable backup power without breaking the bank can pose a challenge. This guide delves into the world of generators to identify the top brands on the market and reviews the factors that make these generators a good purchase.

1. Honda

The Best Generator Brand Option: Honda

Photo: amazon.com

About the Brand: Honda manufactures more than 70 products and fuel-efficient low e-mission 4-stroke engines for generators, water pumps, lawn mowers, and other power equipment. The company’s generators have a reputation for reliability and relatively quiet operation.
Price Range: $$ to $$$$

Not only does the brand manufacturer some of the most reliable automobiles on the market, but it also produces quality generators. Honda revolutionized the generator market when it introduced the now legendary EU1000i model in 1998, redefining the market for portable power.

Since then, the company has continued to improve on that technology while others have sought to copy it. Though this generator is more expensive than others, consumers are willing to shell out the extra dough because of Honda’s reliability and reputation for quiet operation—the EU2200ITAG produces around the same amount of noise as a coffeemaker at its loudest. However, Honda’s cutting-edge technology isn’t cheap.

Top Products:

  • Honda 1000-Watt Super Quiet Portable Generator: Compact and weighing only 29 pounds, this 1,000-watt generator is portable and energy-efficient. It is a light-duty generator that’s best for minor power outages. Get this model at The Home Depot for $919
  • Honda EU3000IS 3000W 120V Portable Home Generator: This quiet generator can run for up to 20 hours on just 3.5 gallons of fuel and powers such appliances as a furnace, fridge, TV, and more. Wheels and a handle make it easy to move around. Get the Honda 300-Watt Generator on Amazon for $3,399

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2. Generac



The Best Generator Brand Option: Generac

Photo: amazon.com



About the Brand: The company manufactures portable, residential, commercial, and industrial generators. On a watt-per-dollar basis, Generac’s generators offer some of the best value in the generator market.
Price Range: $ to $$$$

Unlike some of the other top brands that produce generators as only a part of their business, Generac only makes generators. Generac made a name for itself some 60 years ago when it began engineering and producing affordable generators for home use.

In addition to producing a line of generators for commercial use, the company today puts out inverters, portable generators, and standby generators for home use. It continues to stick to its mission of producing affordable products, with portable generators that fall into the $500 to $1,000 range and home standby generators that start at the $2,000 price point. Generac’s product line includes its inverter and portable generators, which produce up to 8,000 watts, and its Guardian series of home backup generators.

Top Products:

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3. Westinghouse



The Best Generator Brand Option: Westinghouse

Photo: amazon.com



About the Brand: For more than 130 years, Westinghouse has delivered an extensive product line of equipment. Today the company makes generators, power stations, pressure washers, and lawn and garden equipment that meet virtually any demand.
Price Range: $ to $$$

One of the older companies on this list, Westinghouse was founded by George Westinghouse in 1886 as an electric company. The company produced its first generator, a steam turbine–driven machine, in 1901. Today, Westinghouse produces many different types of portable generators. Its products range from small inverters that generate about 1,200 starting watts to monster machines that produce 15,000 peak watts.

Westinghouse’s large product line, coupled with affordable prices (on a watt-per-dollar basis), allows the company to serve a broad range of customers. Westinghouse has been an innovator in the market: In recent years, it also developed a line of solar-powered generators. The company has also improved the efficiency of its gas-powered models, extending their runtimes to an industry-leading 12 hours.

Top Products:

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4. Champion



The Best Generator Brand Option: Champion

Photo: homedepot.com



About the Brand: An innovator in dual-fuel technology and remote starting, Champion Power Equipment also produces portable generators, standby generators, inverter generators, engines, and log splitters.
Price Range: $ to $$$

Although Champion launched its generator line in 2003, it quickly rose to the upper echelons of the industry thanks to its innovations in dual-fuel technology and relatively low prices. Its generators are among the most affordable on the market.

The company’s dual-fuel generators can run on either propane or gasoline. Its generators also come equipped with a broad range of plugs, including 30-amp and 50-amp outlets in addition to standard 120-volt outlets. These versatile connections, coupled with their ability to run off propane, have made these generators popular in the RV market. Like its rival Westinghouse, Champion also boasts a broad line of generators that range from smaller 2,000-watt inverters to 12,000-watt beasts.

Top Products:

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5. Briggs & Stratton



The Best Generator Brand Option: Briggs & Stratton

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About the Brand: Briggs & Stratton is one of the leading manufacturers of small gasoline engines for outdoor power equipment. The company makes pressure washers, lawn and garden tools, job site products, and some of the top-rated generators available.
Price Range: $ to $$$

As one of the world’s largest producers of small gasoline engines for everything from lawn mowers to go-karts to generators, Briggs & Stratton should know about building durable engines. The company has a reputation for producing reliable and powerful engines for a broad range of equipment. In fact, its engines are so well regarded that the company provides the engines for several other popular generator brands.

Briggs & Stratton produces some of the top generators on the market. Although the company has a variety of generators to choose from, including portable, inverter, and home standby generators, it’s perhaps best known for its energy-efficient compact PowerSmart Series, as well as its Elite Series of powerful portable generators that can produce as much as 9,000 watts.

Top Products:

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6. DuroMax



The Best Generator Brand Option: DuroMax

Photo: amazon.com



About the Brand: True to their name, DuroMax generators are known for reliability and durability, while the company has a reputation for innovations in dual fuel. It makes engines, pumps, pressure washers, and accessories.
Price Range: $ to $$$$

DuroMax makes its own engines, which are renowned for their durability. Like its rival Champion, DuroMax is an innovator in dual-fuel technologies with many of its generators capable of running off of both propane or gasoline. Several of its generators are loaded with a variety of connections, including 30-watt and 50-watt sockets, making DuroMax generators popular with RVers.

Some of DuroMax’s dual-fuel generators can produce up to 15,000 watts, thanks to a 23-horsepower V-twin engine. DuroMax generators also have innovative features, including its MX2 power boost technology, which doubles the amperage of a 120-volt outlet to 240 volts to handle heavier loads.

Top Products:

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7. Predator

The Best Generator Brand Option: Predator

Photo: harborfreight.com

About the Brand: Predator is the brand name for generators produced by Harbor Freight. The company produces generators at discount prices. The family-owned company has been selling tools at discount prices for more than 40 years.
Price Range: $ to $$

Discount tool and equipment company Harbor Freight, which was founded in 1977, markets its own brand of generators under the name Predator. Like its other product lines, Harbor Freight makes generators that boast high performance at a budget price.

One of the company’s most popular generators is a super-quiet inverter that produces a maximum of 3,500 watts, which it sells at a fraction of the price of similar-powered inverters from other brands. The Predator line, which is popular with RVers as well as homeowners and contractors, also includes bargain-priced 4,000-watt generators and larger inverters that produce as much as 9,500 watts.

Top Products:

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8. Wen

The Best Generator Brand Option: Wen

Photo: amazon.com

About the Brand: WEN has a long history of developing tools—from the chainsaw to the electric engraver—and has made a name for itself with a line of affordable portable generators.
Price Range: $ to $$

WEN was a pioneer in the power tool market in the mid-20th century, helping to develop chainsaws, soldering guns, electric jigsaws, and other products since its launch in 1951. The company’s mission is to help woodworkers and artisans execute their wildest imaginations.

Over the years, WEN has expanded to include a variety of other power tools, including generators. WEN produces home generators and portable generators that are among the least expensive on the market.

Top Products:

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9. Sportsman

The Best Generator Brand Option: Sportsman

Photo: homedepot.com

About the Brand: With 50 years of experience, Sportsman has a reputation for producing versatile multi-fuel generators for outdoor enthusiasts, construction sites, and power failures.
Price Range: $ to $$

Although Sportsman’s generators can be used as backup emergency power for a home, they’re designed for outdoor enthusiasts, with the largest generator topping out at about 4,000 watts.

Sportsman generators run off a variety of fuels, including gasoline, propane, and natural gas, making them one of the few tri-fuel generators on the market. Each of its generators features 30-amp hookups that work with RVs. This versatility makes Sportsman generators ideal for a variety of uses, ranging from tailgating to camping to emergency electricity during an outage.

Top Products:

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10. Ryobi

The Best Generator Brand Option: Ryobi

Photo: homedepot.com

About the Brand:This brand is only sold at The Home Depot and has a reputation for making user-friendly power tools and lawn tools, including generators.
Price Range: $ to $$

Ryobi launched in 1943 as an auto parts company before later expanding into power tools and generators. Today, the company’s power tools are sold primarily through The Home Depot. Like its line of power tools, Ryobi’s generators are relatively affordable.

Though the company produces just a handful of models, Ryobi’s generators feature innovative controls that make them more user-friendly than many other generator brands. Its most popular model features digital displays that provide real-time data regarding fuel level, power load, and runtime, all of which can be monitored via Bluetooth from a smartphone. These generators also come with safety features, including a carbon monoxide automatic shut-off switch.

Top Products:

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11. Firman

The Best Generator Brand Option: Firman

Photo: amazon.com

About the Brand: Engineered in the U.S., Firman generators have a long running time with their large gas tanks. They field-test their generators in extreme weather conditions.
Price Range: $ to $$$

Though Firman has been making generators for years for such brands as Kohler and Ridgid, it didn’t start producing generators under its own brand until 2015. The company has made inroads into the market by addressing top customer demands.

No one likes having to constantly refill the tank in the generator, which is why Firman outfits its generators with gas tanks that are 25 percent larger than a standard gas tank, giving its generators significant run times of 12 hours on a half-load. It also knows that the second biggest gripe about generators is noise, which is why the company has an entire line of generators—the Whisper series —that is designed to produce as little noise as possible, with decibel outputs of around 67 decibels. Firman’s generators range from 3,000-watt inverters for camping to 9,000-watt generators for homes or remote work sites.

Top Products:

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How We Chose the Best Generator Brands

After extensive product research reviewing the variety of types of generators on the market, this collection of recommended products from the best generator brands was selected based on several criteria, including value for money, portability, flexibility of use, and popularity with users. While reviewing the generators available on the market, we specifically looked for and chose products that provide a range of features from dual-fuel (and a unique triple-fuel option), remote start, and safety features.

Runtime, durability, and the number and types of outlets provided were also valued features we considered when reviewing the available generators from the top brands. The selection in this guide includes generators at a variety of price points that can ably power part or all of a home during an outage; some can power an RV, and others are designed to power a tailgating event or camping adventure.