The Top Five Electric Generators for Home Emergencies
March 23, 2023
By Christian Schauf

An often overlooked aspect of preparedness is energy.  From light to heat to keeping food and medicine at proper temperatures, having the ability to generate power in the case of a power outage is a worthy consideration and investment. 

There are a variety of electric generators available on the market, but not all of them are suitable for home emergencies.  In addition, each home likely has different needs and requirements based on environment, size and number of people living in a household.  When it comes to choosing the best electric generator for home emergencies, there are several factors to consider, such as power output, fuel efficiency, and durability. 


A quick note on two very different types of generators:

Electric generators are essentially just large battery systems. They are charged by being plugged in and powering from the grid, or via solar panels.  While this is a great way to generate power without the need for any other fuel sources, charging is slow and weather dependent, which can be less than ideal in an emergency.  In addition, capacity is limited.

Gasoline powered generators are powered by gasoline or similar fuel types, like propane or diesel.  If you have ample gasoline and a way to store it, this is a great option. But gasoline powered generators are also louder, and require more maintenance than their electric counterparts.  


As a reference point, According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), the average American home uses an average of 10,632 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity per year. That's 29,130 watts (W) per day, which can be divided by 24 hours to get an average of 1,214 W to power a home throughout the day.   In an emergency situation, it’s likely that non-critical appliances would be shut off, thus reducing this number, but a good rule of thumb to strive towards.    


Here are the top 5 electric generators for home emergencies as rated by experts:

1. Honda EU2200i - The Honda EU2200i is a highly rated generator that is known for its fuel efficiency, quiet operation, and portability. It can provide up to 2,200 watts of power and has a run time of up to 8 hours on a single tank of gas.  

2. Generac GP8000E - The Generac GP8000E is a powerful and reliable generator that can provide up to 8,000 watts of power. It is designed to handle heavy-duty power tools and appliances, making it ideal for use during extended power outages.

3. Westinghouse WGen7500 - The Westinghouse WGen7500 is a durable generator that can provide up to 7,500 watts of power. It has a run time of up to 16 hours on a single tank of gas and features a remote start function for added convenience.

4. Champion 3800-Watt Dual Fuel - The Champion 3800-Watt Dual Fuel generator is a versatile option that can run on either propane or gasoline. It can provide up to 3,800 watts of power and has a run time of up to 9 hours on a single tank of gas.

5. DuroMax XP12000EH - The DuroMax XP12000EH is a heavy-duty generator that can provide up to 12,000 watts of power. It is designed for extended use and features a dual fuel system that can run on either propane or gasoline.


The list above are all highly rated generators, suitable for use during emergencies, and each have their own advantages and disadvantages. It's important to choose the generator that best fits your specific needs and budget.  Consider your power needs, your climate, and your ability to source fuel.