After experiencing several blackouts, that is when most people think of getting a backup method to power their homes.
There are several options available and the chances are people would go for a generator.
Depending on your electrical load, you might want to consider the Westinghouse WGen7500 or the WEN GN4500 generators. These two are worth every penny considering the power that you get out of them and the price at which they retail.
If you are going to have a great time using either of them, then it is important to learn more about their features. Before all that, let us see what to look for when choosing a generator.
Table of Contents:
What To Look For
EPA and CARB Compliance
Some might not consider them as being important, but always take note of such compliance certifications.
EPA stands for Environmental Protection Agency. It is mandated with making sure that such machines can remain low on emissions. If the generator is EPA compliant, then you know that the common pollutants are kept to a minimum.
The same goes for the CARB compliance certification too. The CARB compliance is mandatory for California residents. Just know that CARB guidelines are stricter than the EPA. Having both certifications means that the generator is even better.
The Power of the Generator
This must be the most important consideration when choosing a generator. Power in this case we mean the rated output of the generator and not its engine rated horsepower.
It is from the electrical load then you can know which generator would be ideal for you. The first thing you need to do is list all the appliances which might need to get power from the generator. Once you total up their power ratings, then you will get the size of the generator that you need.
We recommend that you multiply the total by 1.25 as a way of oversizing the generator. This gives you more room to use more of the generator without straining it too much.
Let us say that the total power is around 2000 watts. When choosing a generator, go for one with around 3000 watts or more for the rated power output.
If you do not have the best engine, then the generator might not last for long or provide you with the power that you want.
Looking at multiple generators in the market, we see that the majority are 4-cycle engines. This might be because such engines are less bulky and have a simple drive and lubrication mechanisms. They also generate impressive power for their size.
The powerful generators would have the V-twin engines. Such engines can easily rotate at higher speeds so that you get more power at any time. They are also characterized for being lighter and better balanced compared to other engine designs.
Other than the engine design, you also have to look at the engine displacement commonly referred to as cc. Having a higher engine cc means it will be heavier. The misconception for most people is that higher cc means more power. That is not always the case.
Look at the overall power of the engine before deciding based on its cc figure.
The Starting System
The starting system always varies from one generator to another. When dealing with generators of output 3000 watts or lower, the starting mechanism is highly important.
You will get some models having a recoil start with others having an electric start. If you are going to choose a recoil start, then consider the number of pulls you have to make before the generator can start.
If you are likely to use the generator occasionally, then a recoil system is not such a bad choice. For those who might need to use it daily, then investing in an electric start should be the way to go.
Depending on the generator model, some might have an electric start as the main method and the recoil start as a backup. There are advanced generators that use key fobs to start and stop the generators.
You simply have to see which one would be ideal for your needs.
You also have to consider the weight of the generator. For someone who wants something portable, then you need the weight to be as low as possible.
If a manufacturer makes a portable generator, then it would have features to make it adaptable to the nomadic life as much as possible. This is where some would have wheels for transport or open cages for carrying them around.
Always look at the generator weight to see which one would suit your needs if you ever want a portable generator.
The Noise Factor
When it comes to noise levels, that is also an important factor. The last thing you need is for the neighbors to find the generator being too noisy.
If you want a silent generator, then opt for the inverter generators. So far, they are the quietest you can buy right now. Most of them would generate a noise level of below 75dBA. For a generator, that can be quite silent.
Using a generator does not have to be hard. That is all possible when you get yourself the Westinghouse WGen7500 model. It is one of the easiest to use compared to some models in the same price range.
It is not just about being easy to use, but also the functionality and performance of the generator. Here are more reasons to get yourself this generator.
You might be used to generators starting with the use of cords, but this one is different. It comes with an electric start.
Having an electric start on overall makes it ideal for those quick starts. You simply press a button on the control panel and the generator roars to life.
What is amazing is that you can still start the generator with the use of a key fob. The key fob can still shutdown the generator. Just make sure you are within the recommended range to start or stop the generator.
The key fob can work up to 260 feet away. As such, you would always have a great time using the generator.
Transfer Switch Ready
This must be one of those features that get more people interested in the generator. This is because you can easily set it up with your transfer switch. This means that you do not always need an electrician to connect the generator to your home or RV.
Once the generator is connected to the transfer switch, you can easily switch to the side that allows the generator to power the home.
Another thing that would be interesting to the user will be the maintenance part. That is not an issue considering that this model uses the reliable 420 cc engine.
The engine is built to run for hours without necessarily breaking down. It will be years before you think of replacing the generator. We recommend that you consider following the recommended maintenance schedule by the manufacturer to keep it running smoothly.
Dependable Source of Power
The reliability and performance of this generator makes it a dependable source of power for anyone who wants a generator.
We find that the running watts are 7500 and the peak watts are 9,500 watts. So, each time you use it to power your home, keep in mind the running watts. Do not go beyond this rated power to avoid overloading the generator.
The Fuel Use
Because of its overall power output, many people might be interested to know what kind of runtime they would get with the generator.
The generator can run for 11 hours on its 6.6-gallon fuel tank. This is enough time to power your appliances even if it means overnight.
The runtime is when the generator is running at 25% capacity. It is common for people to run their generators at this load capacity. If you increase the load, then the runtime will reduce too.
There is also the built-in fuel gauge. This will allow you to know when it is time to refuel the generator to keep it running smoothly.
WEN as a brand has been around since 1951. It is expected that this whole time it would make the best generators. Well, that is the case with the WEN GN4500 generator. It is one of the best to get for the money right now.
Other than being affordable, there are many other features you will like about the generator. Let us check them out below.
Like any other generator, a person would be interested in the amount of power that the generator makes. It is why we also have to see what this one makes.
The manufacturer rates it to have 4500 starting watts and 3600 running watts.
It is important that you distinguish between these two ratings of power. The running watts is what will be available continuously. So, when using the generator, keep the electrical load lower than 3600 watts.
For its size and price, we find it being great with its power output. If you were going to get a Yamaha or Honda equivalent, it would probably cost twice or thrice. So, it is a great deal for those who want an affordable and powerful generator.
This one comes with a runtime of 13 hours on its 4-gallon tank. This runtime is when the generator is running on half load of its rated capacity. When others need to run ¼ of their rated capacity to achieve such runtimes, this one runs half of its capacity.
It is easy to see that you would get more power delivery over an extended period before you can think of refueling the generator.
For those who love to camp, this will be a nice choice for overnight use. Considering that you would not be powering many things at night, it will easily power through the night without refueling.
It is always nice to know what kind of power you are generating. It is why you will enjoy using the digital meter of this generator.
From the digital meter, you will get information such as the voltage, frequency, total runtime, and the session runtime.
This is all important information that you need to know about your generator. You never know when it might come in handy while using the generator over the years.
As part of making sure that you have an easy time using the generator, we find it having four standard 20A outlets for household use, transfer switch ready outlet, and an RV ready outlet too. These several outlets should make the generator a plug and play option for many.
As part of usability, we find that the generator is EPAIII and CARB compliant. This means that the emissions are low. You can use the generator for longer without worrying so much about its carbon footprint.
Another thing is that it comes with safety features such as the automatic voltage regulator, spark arrestor, and low oil shutdown. It should then be a safe to use generator on overall.
What are some of the safety features should you consider in a generator?
When buying a generator, consider safety features such as the low oil alert or shutdown feature. It is necessary to further protect the generator.
Another thing to keep in mind is the overload protection. This will prevent the board of the generator from damage in case there is an overload.
Are electric starters better than recoil starters?
For many people, they should find the electric starters being better. This is because all you have to do is press a button and the generator easily starts.
If you have to get the recoil start, make sure that it does not need too many pulls before the generator can start.
Is CARB and EPA compliance important?
These two certifications are important to always consider when choosing a generator. This is because they determine how much pollution the generator makes. If the generator has these two as part of its certifications, you are sure it is a low emission generator.
Is the Westinghouse WGen7500 a good generator?
Looking at its various features, we find it being a great generator to own. Many find it being a reliable generator that handles a huge load. Even if you have more electrical appliances running at the same time, it is still able to provide you with an impressive runtime.
What is the operating noise level of the Westinghouse WGen7500 generator?
From the spec sheet, we find that the operating noise is 72dBA. For such a noise level, it should then be great to own today. You can be sure that it is going to be a moderately quiet generator to keep using over the years.
Does the WGen7500 have a low oil warning system?
Yes. The generator is equipped with this feature to alert you when this happens. The idea is to keep the generator from damaging the engine when the engine oil level is low.
What is the runtime of the WEN GN4500 generator?
This generator has a runtime of 13 hours on its 4-gallon fuel tank. This can make it a great generator for overnight use without refueling.
You can never go wrong with a WEN or Westinghouse generator. This is because you get to enjoy reliable generators while at the same time pay less for them.
From the features, we find that the Westinghouse WGen7500 model is ideal for those with more electrical load. If you want to run many appliances off the generator in your house or RV, then go for this model. Its wheels also make it easy to transport.
The WEN GN4500 model is for medium power needs. It should still be able to power most of your electronics, but watch out for the heating elements. If you can keep the electrical load below the rated power, then you should be good.