It is common that sometimes you have to choose between two great generators for the money. At this point, you would be confused on how to proceed. The best way would be checking out the features of the generators to see which one would be great for your applications.
For this guide, we will focus on the Westinghouse iGen4500 and the DuroMax XP5500EH generator models. They are both affordable for the kind of power that they make. It is why people would want to see what more they offer in addition to the power.
Before we can get into their power and other features, let us see what you should consider when looking for the best portable generator.
Table of Contents:
What to Look For
When talking about a portable generator, these three are the most important considerations you will have to make so that you end up with a portable generator.
Look at its physical size. If you want a portable generator, then you need to get yourself a compact unit. The last thing you need is a bulky generator that would be hard to move around when you need to do so.
Some models would come with wheels to help with moving the generator. If the generator has wheels, then you know part of your portability is now solved.
Another consideration would be its weight. Since we are considering its portability, then go for a lightweight unit. Try to find a model in the range of 100 lbs. or below for portability.
When it is lightweight and it has wheels, its transportation would be easier.
Fuel Efficiency and Run Times
Generators mostly run on diesel or gas. It is then important that you understand their fuel efficiency.
Newer generators come with better engine technology aimed at improving the overall fuel efficiency. You should take the time to see what the manufacturer claims to be its fuel efficiency.
One way of understanding its fuel efficiency would be its run time. A model that comes with more runtime on a single tank of gas means that it has better fuel efficiency.
The runtime will determine how long the generator will run without you refueling it. It is easy to see that at this point you want more runtime and better fuel efficiency for a generator.
A generator would easily make noise when it is running. The question is how much noise would a model be making?
If you know the noise level of the generator, then you would know if it is quiet for your application or not. There are some models that can be too loud for RV applications or home power backup with your neighbors around.
The noise level is measured in terms of decibels. Manufacturers will easily display this figure as they want you to know that their generator is the quietest.
Anything below 75dBA qualifies as a quiet generator. Yes, generators are not the quietest machines, but it is possible to get low noise models.
Manufacturers now also have low noise muffler designs. This means that you can experience low noise compared to some other old models in the same category.
Still as part of getting a portable generator, look at the maximum power that it makes. The idea is to have a model that can handle your electrical load.
First, take an account of all the electrical load that you have in the house or RV before buying the generator.
Let us say that taking an account, your electrical load is 3000 watts at any given time. For such a load, go for a 4000-watt generator. Keep in mind that the 4000 watts should be the running watts and not the starting watts.
It might not seem as much, but you also have to consider the power quality that you are getting out of the portable generator.
New generators have the power inverters. These inverters are important for delivering smooth power to your appliances. The last thing you need is a generator that produces power that can fry your TV.
This stable and clean power is good for the sensitive electronics such as computers, TVs, radio, and more.
Look at the inverter technology that comes with the generator to see if it will be great for you.
Starting the Generator
Before you can choose any generator, always consider how easy or hard it is to start.
Gone are the days when you had to work your recoil start by pulling it several times to start the generator. Right now, there are models that have an electric start. All you have to do is press a button and your generator starts.
As much as they can have an electric start, they will also have the recoil start too as a backup method.
The safety features can vary from one model to another. The most common would be a low oil warning system. When the oil gets too low, the generator automatically shuts down to protect the engine from damage. Always look at this system to know when it is time to refill the oil.
Another common feature is the overload protection circuit. This circuit is important to keep your generator from overload and potentially damage its inverter. When it detects an overload, then the generator automatically shuts off for generator inverter protection.
Westinghouse is a top brand when it comes to making the generators. It is easy to expect that the Westinghouse iGen4500 will be a great generator to own right now. It comes with the right power to handle most of the recreational activities you might need to undertake.
Another reason people would go for the model should be versatility. Below, we look at more of its features and functionality to see if it is a great choice.
The Power Output
So, what kind of power can you expect with the iGen4500 model? This is a common question that most users would have in their minds.
We find that the model can deliver an impressive 4500 watts as the peak power and 3700 watts as the running power.
If you are new to generators, focus more on the running watts. This is the power that will be available for use when the generator is running continuously.
With this kind of power, a user is now able to handle the power outages or run the recreational activities with ease.
It is always nice to see newer generators having better fuel efficiency. That is what you get with this model as its engine performance is better on overall.
It can vary its speed depending on the load. The result is that it would have 30% to 50% more fuel efficiency compared to similar models in the market.
Talking of fuel use, the model can run up to 18 hours on its 3.4-gallon gas tank. 18 hours should be enough time to power all your essentials until the power outage is sorted.
The model comes with a compact, but powerful design. The aim is for you to end up with a lightweight, but great power delivery for a portable generator.
Being compact also means that it is also lightweight. This generator weighs 98 lbs., making it among the lightest models for its power output.
It comes with a telescoping handle and never-flat wheels important for portability. If you have to transport it, just pull out the handle and drag it on its wheels.
Ease of Starting
One thing that Westinghouse is known for over the years should be the ease of starting their generators.
This one comes with a key fob which offers remote start. The aim is for you to end up with the ease of starting to make your life easier when working with the generator.
It still comes with a recoil start as the backup start method.
The generator noise can sometimes be a nuisance for some neighbors. It is then the reason why you get this generator for its low noise of operation.
Since its noise level is 52dBA, it easily stands out for being a low noise generator to own right now.
To make it low noise, the generator comes with a double-insulated acoustic enclosure. There are additional low tone mufflers aimed at reducing the operating noise.
The generator has several outlets important for setting up your generator whether it is to the house or the RV.
For those who are not sure about how to proceed, it is always great if you have the help of an electrician to get it properly set up and use the generator.
The XP5500EH model is common among RV travelers who need power while on the move. That does not mean you cannot use the same for home power backup applications. Because of its impressive power, you should easily find use for it.
Below we discuss more about the generator and why it might be what you have been looking for all along.
The Power and Run Time
The model utilizes the dual-fuel technology to remain a highly versatile generator for the money. For its price, not many models would match its power output. It is why more people are willing to spend on it to experience more power for less.
We have mentioned that it is dual powered. This is because the model can run on gas and on propane.
When running on gas, it will generate an impressive power of 4500 watts of running power. The power drops to 4275 watts as the running power when using propane.
You should never go beyond the rated power when using the generator. Going beyond this figure will quickly overload the generator.
If the generator can deliver all this power, then what is its run time? Well, the manufacturer claims that it can run for 9 hours on its 4-gallon tank. This is when running at 50% load capacity.
If you are running on propane, then the generator would do 8 hours on a 20 lbs. propane tank.
Looking at its run time, it should be easy to see that the model has enough of it to handle your power needs.
The Noise Level
Another thing to like about this generator is its noise level. The manufacturer has it rated at 69dBA. This level of noise can be ideal for an office or even your home. It might be the reason it is common in office setup.
As for its starting mechanisms, it comes with an electric starter with the battery included. It also has the traditional recoil start as the backup.
The generator comes with 3 AC outlets and 1 DC outlet. Depending on the application, you can always connect to the right outlet for you to enjoy the power.
With these several outlets, you will not even need an electrician to hook it up.
Also, the model is transfer switch ready. In case there is a power outage, all you have to do is connect the model to the breaker box to easily power your household.
Ease of Portability
The model has the open frame design. This allows for ease of carrying it around.
Because of the frame, you will always have a place to hold when lifting. Just note that it might be the easiest to move around even if it weighs 124 lbs. With its wheels and handles, moving it just got easier. You simply pull out the handles and move it on its wheels.
Since this generator is EPA approved and CARB compliant, it means that it comes with low emissions. Anyone who is in the US can easily buy this type of generator in all the 50 states even when in California.
In addition, the generator comes with a spark arrestor making it a suitable choice for the forested areas.
Can you run the XP5500EH model on propane?
Yes. This is a dual fuel generator. This means that it can run on two different sources of fuel. In this case, it can work with propane or gas.
What are the benefits of a generator having a spark arrestor?
The spark arrestor helps to prevent the emission of flammable debris coming from the generator. This goes on to avoid cases of wildland fire. So, if you use the generator in forests, you do not worry that it might start a fire.
Is the Westinghouse iGen4500 a good generator?
Looking at its features, we find it being a great generator for several applications. It generates the best power that many people would want for their home use or RV applications. It is also good in terms of portability. It is easy to move it around on its wheels.
How fuel efficient is the DuroMax XP5500EH model?
You will find it being a highly efficient generator. It can run for 9 hours on its gas tank. This is when the model is running at 50% capacity. So, if you reduce the load, you can expect it to run even for more hours.
Where can you service the Westinghouse generators?
We recommend that you always service your generator at the authorized dealership. This is because you get the chance of getting genuine parts for your generator. The last thing you need are cheap parts that might affect the performance of the generator.
These two models easily compare to each other in terms of value for money. If you were looking at other brands, they might cost a lot more for the money. It is why these two will make nice alternatives to what you have been using with other models.
If you want a quiet and easily portable generator, then the Westinghouse iGen4500 super quiet generator is what you get. For its running power, we find it being affordable too.
For more power, then the DuroMax XP5500EH portable generator will be your top consideration. You will also like it for having dual fuel capability. This is because it can run both on propane or gasoline.