Shopping for a good generator might be rather difficult – particularly if you are looking for a quiet one that can also be moved along. In the event that you have neighbors that are easily bothered by the noise, you need to go for a model that doesn’t sound like it’s about to take off. With the best quiet portable generators, no one should be bothered by any noise.
But how do you find such a good, quality model? Well, that’s easy: you read about the products that other people used before you did. By reading some detailed quiet portable generator reviews, you should be able to form an idea and buy the appropriate product. This guide should help you do exactly that.
Why Should You Get a Quiet Portable Generator?
There are quite a few reasons why you should get a quiet portable generator – all of which will depend on your preferences and needs. Quiet portable generators come with a variety of benefits, among which are included:
In most states, there will be some kind of limit on exactly how much noise you can make. Sure, while there might not be a problem to make some noise now and again, it can become a bit of a legal matter if the noise occurs continuously.
Most cities and states have a limit of about 75 decibels – and anything higher than that might just end in a warning – or even worse, a fine. This is because anything that goes higher than 75 decibels can trigger a headache and health issues, causing the state to put these limits.
Considering that most quiet generators have a decibel rating of 50-60 dB, these units respect most regulations. Not only will you be safe from becoming an annoyance to your neighbors, but you’ll also be steering clear of fines.
Let’s say that you want to go camping, but you still need something to draw power for a laptop or the radio – or keep a light bulb on. Regular standalone generators are quite heavy – and in most cases, don’t have any wheels or handles to make it easy to carry.
However, with portable quiet generators, this is no longer a problem. First of all, most of them are lightweight – which means that you may easily carry them from one place to the other, without breaking your back in the process. Secondly, the majority have handles, wheels, or both, in an attempt to further increase their portability.
Last but not least, most quiet portable generators also tend to be fuel-efficient. This way, you will not worry about the fact that you are wasting money on gas – making them a cost-effective solution. If your portable generator is not energy-efficient, then you might want to try investing in a better model.
Best Quiet Portable Generators Comparison Chart
Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 500
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Powerhorse 1600 Rated Portable Generator
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WEN 56125i Super Quiet Portable Generator
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Honda Eu7000is Generator with Electronic Fuel Injection
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Yamaha EF2000iSv2 Portable Inverter
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Briggs & Stratton P2200 PowerSmart Series Portable Generator
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Top Quiet Portable Generators Reviewed
1. Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 500
If you don’t want to install a complete solar system in the RV or you just want to take your laptop on a quiet day outdoors, then the Jackery 500 is exactly what you should be looking for. Portable and using solar power, you won’t even have to bother with batteries when carrying this around with you.
Rated at 500 watts and featuring a surge capacity of 1000 watts, it is all that you need to power a laptop, an RV ceiling fan, or any other small appliances. You can even power a small portable refrigerator with it.
Weighing just a bit over 13 pounds, it can be easily carried around by anyone, wherever you may need it. Plus, it’s very quiet, meaning that you won’t be bothering the people near you – nor will you be bothered yourself by the noise. For camping trips or daily outdoor trips, this unit should be able to provide all the energy that you need.
- Very portable and easy to carry around
- Quiet and environmentally friendly
- Powerful enough to run your small, delicate appliances
- Generous warranty
- Takes quite a bit of time to charge
- Its life cycle is rather limited
2. Powerhorse 1600 Rated Portable Generator
If you are looking for an unobtrusive compact unit that you may take on the road with you, then you might definitely want to give some thought into the Powerhouse 1600. Not only is it highly efficient, but it also has a very attractive price, making it a great choice for those that are looking for a portable generator on a budget.
At 52 dB, this product is no louder than your average air conditioning unit, making it ideal for those who appreciate their quiet time. If it’s set at a fair distance from you (a couple of yards away), you won’t even hear it. It’s perfect for taking at an outdoor party.
This unit also uses copper-wound machine heads to prevent overheating of the motor or even damage. This is different compared to generators that have aluminum machine heads, which tend to heat up after continuous use.
- Maintenance is quite easy to do, as it has a removable side panel
- Very quiet and convenient to have around
- Sold at a very affordable price
- It has a short-lived running cycle
3. WEN 56125i Super Quiet Portable Generator
Featuring a decibel rating of 51 dB, the WEN 56125i is as quiet as the average conversation you might have with a friend visiting you – or an AC unit running in the background. Plus, rated at 1250 watts, it’s exactly what you will need to power your cell phones, laptops, tablets, and so on.
The tank of this unit is ultra-efficient, allowing you to go for a total of five hours on a half-load. Plus, you have an Eco-Mode automatic throttle to help you save on gas in the long run. The unit will automatically detect when the items are plugged or not, turning itself off automatically to save fuel.
You will have to change the oil periodically with this unit, and it might need quite a bit of maintenance – but if you are consistent, this is the kind of product that will last you for a long time.
- It comes with a parallel connection function
- Eco-Mode adjusts itself in order to save fuel
- Very quiet operation
- The tank has quite a low capacity
- It requires a bit of maintenance
4. Honda Eu7000is Generator with Electronic Fuel Injection
Sometimes, you may need a portable quiet unit that will save you in the event of a complete power outage. At 700 watts, the Honda Eu7000is is perfect for powering the essentials you may have in your home – keeping things running until the power comes back.
With a 5-gallon tank fuel, this one may easily run up to 18 hours – but this also depends on the load that it is currently powering. When it is full-bore, this one should easily be able to power through 6 hours – making it more efficient than other similar units.
Featuring a fuel-injected motor system, this item functions more like a car rather than a standard generator. It will also burn less fuel this way, start more reliably – and therefore, run more smoothly. The electric push-button start makes its operation flawless and easy, ensuring that even those with no experience in handling generators can use it.
- Its wheels allow it to be easily moved around
- Rugged build that ensures quality and durability
- The fuel tank has quite a long-running power
- Very easy to use
- The unit is quite large and bulky
- You might not be able to carry it to more distant locations
5. Yamaha EF2000iSv2 Portable Inverter
Sometimes, all you want is a unit that you can carry around like a briefcase, from one place to another. Thanks to its handle, this can be achievable with the Yamaha EF2000iSv2 – meaning that you may easily take it around with you for an outdoor party or a camping site.
When it comes to the noise it creates, this unit also excels. The rating is between 51 dB and 61 dB (depending on the load that it handles), making it no louder than your average conversation. Plus, considering that it features rubber feet, the noise is isolated, and you won’t hear it vibrating as it is working.
Featuring a Smart Throttle system, the unit automatically detects the power that it has to pull – allowing you to save on fuel. Plus, since it can handle as much as 1600 watts, it is the perfect thing to use when you wish to power a small appliance – such as a laptop, a radio, or even to charge your mobile phone. With the proper maintenance, this unit may also last you for quite a long time.
- The Smart Throttle System ensures great fuel efficiency
- It is easily carried and stored
- Creates little noise in comparison to other similar units
- It consumes quite a bit of oil
- The oil reserve is rather small and requires frequent changes
6. Briggs & Stratton P2200 PowerSmart Series Portable Generator
Tired of continuously having to check on the generator? With its engine that is controlled by a computer, the Briggs & Stratton P2200 is a product that is as efficient as it is quiet. Plus, since it weighs only 55 pounds, you may easily carry it around wherever you need it. This feature is further enhanced by the carry handles.
Rated at 59 dB, it’s not among the quietest options that you can get – but it is also not among the loudest. It’s just as loud as your average conversation, making it ideal for a camping trip. All you have to do is place it a few meters away from you, and you will not even be able to hear a thing.
Thanks to its 1-gallon fuel tank, this unit can run continuously for 8 hours if you use it at 25% of its load. The price is quite attractive, making it a great choice for those that are looking for generators on a budget. It also allows for parallel connection and multiple outlets – ensuring that you have access to all the power that you need.
- Very maneuverable thanks to its weight and handles
- Features parallel connection and multiple outlets
- 1-gallon tank that allows for quite a lot of continuous use
- A bit louder than the average quiet generator
- Is not compliant with the emission regulations of California
7. Champion 75537i RV Ready Portable Generator
Those that are passionate about camping with their RV might appreciate the Champion 75537i unit. Plus, thanks to its higher wattage, it immediately stands out among units that have almost the same weight. That being said, with its built-in wheels, you may easily move it around from one place to another – although its size might not be suitable for muddy terrain.
With a power of 3100 watts, this unit is all that you might need to power all the basic appliances you have in your RV. Plus, even though it is very powerful, it is quiet. If you place the generator right outside the RV and you are staying inside, the chances are that you will not even hear it.
At a 25% load, this unit can run continuously for as long as 8 hours. Plus, you have the option to hit “Economy Mode” on the control panel – a feature that will automatically lower the power of the engine when it isn’t used.
- Can handle quite a large load
- Easy to move around thanks to the wheels
- Economy Mode that allows you to save on fuel
- Can be started remotely
- It is slightly loud when handling heavier loads
- The small wheels make it bothersome for uneven or muddy terrain
8. Atima AY2000iInverter Generator
If you are looking for a generator that is extremely quiet while being powerful, then you might want to try the Atima AY2000i unit. Getting its power from a Yamaha engine, a reputable brand name, you can be certain that this one will provide the ultimate performance for your needs.
At 50 pounds, this unit is already lightweight – making it the perfect choice for carrying it around to remote areas. That being said, it also features a set of wheels that allow you to maneuver it with as easily as possible. Plus, while it may look slightly bulky in terms of height, it is still more compact in comparison to other similar models.
Going from 51.5 dB to 61 dB (depending on the load that it’s carrying), this unit is as quiet as a conversation. Plus, it has a set of convenient features such as a Smart Throttle, a 1-gallon fuel tank, and easily accessible spark plugs. It’s the ideal choice for campers, tailgaters – or even those that wish to enjoy a nice picnic somewhere with no power.
- Very easy to move thanks to the wheels
- Smart Throttle that ensures fuel efficiency
- Very quiet even when handling big loads
- Does not have a fuel gauge
Generator vs. Inverter: Understanding Both Systems
Nowadays, pretty much every generator has been designed to handle the more sensitive electronics that we have in the house – but still, while every inverter is a generator, not every generator is an inverter. An inverter has the protection necessary to ensure that your devices won’t get fried. With generators, things get a little more complicated. Inverter generators have the possibility of providing the “clean” kind of AC voltage that will not damage smartphones, laptops, or other appliances that are more sensitive to surges.
In most cases, inverter generators are capable of running for a longer time, more efficiently, and with a quieter action in comparison to a standard generator. This is actually quite convenient if you are planning to bring power into an RV, an outdoor party, or even your home during a power surge.
Standard generators are an efficient choice – but if you want something that is quiet, you might want to opt for an inverter. With most inverters, you should be able to carry out a conversation even if you are standing right next to it. It will still produce some noise, but not enough for it to become bothersome. You may find out more about the different types of generators by checking our page.
Things to Consider When Browsing for Quiet Portable Generator
Every generator is different and comes with various features. This is why, when you are shopping for a new one, you might want to take these aspects into account.
For many people, the fuel capacity of a quiet portable generator is one of the most important factors to consider – because you do not want to be at the mercy of the unit. You are looking for efficiency and power, and therefore, you don’t want to have to do a refill every couple of hours. Luckily, with the efficiency of most generators of the kind, the fuel consumption is not a problem.
As a result, you may want to think about the fuel capacity that you need for your applications. If you only plan on using it now and again, then you do not need a generator with very large capacity – one that has a smaller fuel tank will do just fine. On the other hand, if you plan on using that generator a lot, then you might want to tap into your budget and buy a larger-capacity model.
One more important thing that you may want to consider is the watt rating of the unit. Depending on your plans of operating said generator, you’ll want to know whether the generator can handle it or not. If your appliances take quite a lot of power and your generator has little power, then the only thing that will happen is that it’s going to burn out under all that stress. On the other hand, if it has too much power, you’ll only be paying more for something you won’t even need.
In this sense, you may want to think about the appliances that you are planning on using and select the wattage accordingly. Each household unit has a specific wattage – and at the same time, each will have a certain spike when they get turned on. You need to make sure that the generator is able to withstand those spikes and operate the tools at the power that you need.
There are many quiet portable generators that have been equipped with a throttling mechanism. This will adjust the unit’s output based on what devices are drawing power from that generator in that exact moment. This feature will help with the overall efficiency, taking the pressure off of you so that you don’t have to continuously watch over the unit.
While the feature is not really mandatory, there are a few potential benefits – all of which may suit you good if you aren’t exactly a veteran in operating a generator. They are also great for those that are always on the move and do not have the time to constantly check the generator.
Some generators may not be compatible with the state, local, or federal regulation in regard to emissions and other environmental factors. For instance, while a unit may be acceptable for one state, it may not be shipped to others – mainly because it does not meet the certification requirements for the emissions.
That being said, while some units may meet the requirements only for a few states, others can lack the USDA approval altogether. To be certain that your unit is legal and safe, you may want to read the fine print – or even ask the manufacturer if you are unclear about something from the documentation. This way, you will know for certain that you are only paying for a high-quality product.
Indicator and Lights
While indeed many inverters nowadays have indicators that show the wattage, not all of them actually have this feature. Even fewer of them have fuel gauges that you can guide yourself on. Plus, while some units may have a run-time indicator, others may not. For this reason, it is essential that you check for all the indicators that you need before you make a purchase.
Generators can usually function in parallel with other units coming from the same line, class, or brand. That being said, not every unit is compatible with each other, just like not every unit may come with the cables or accessories necessary to ensure parallel functionality. If that is your purpose, make sure that you have the option to run it in parallel with your existing unit.
They may be advertised as “quiet,” but not all units have the same decibel level. Sound is measured through decibels, and while breathing has a decibel level of about 10 dB, a regular suburb conversation stands at about 50 dB. As a result, the average 50-60 dB unit is actually pretty quiet, which is ideal for you.
You may still want to check what noise levels are acceptable in the areas that you need. If you have a decibel limit, make sure that yours does not go over it. The last thing you want is to get in trouble with your neighbors and the state regulations.
FAQ about Quiet Portable Generators
- Is it possible for me to power an entire house during an emergency with a quiet portable generator?
That depends – but in most cases, that is not actually a possibility. If the unit has a higher wattage, then indeed, you may use it to power the entire house – but most portable units generally don’t go any higher than 4000 watts. While this may be enough to power some of your essential appliances during an outage, it may not work to power every single electrical unit you have in your home. To power your entire house, you might want to try investing in the best whole house generators instead.
- How loud does a 75 dB generator feel? Is it very loud?
For most people, a 75 dB generator is not very quiet – some may even say it is bothersome. It’s as loud as your average vacuum cleaner – and while it may not be a problem if you are planning to use it for a few minutes, it can get very annoying if you want to use it for a longer time. Ideally, you might want to go for a generator that has a rating of 50 dB on average.
- Can I make a quiet portable generator even quieter?
Even though most generators nowadays were made to be quiet by nature, there are still a few ways for you to make a generator even quieter. First things first, you may want to try moving it several feet away – at least 20 – so that it doesn’t start buzzing right next to you. You may also try to set it so that the exhaust pipes point away from you or create some type of acoustic barrier for them – but for the latter, you might want to try asking for professional help.
- How do I power a portable generator?
Most portable generators are powered by gasoline, which is why they tend to make quite a bit of noise. However, if continuously fumbling with gas does not seem like an option for you, you might also want to invest in solar generators. They can take a bit to charge, but they are also a cost-effective way – mostly because you will not have to pay for solar power.
- How long do portable generators usually run per charge?
This mostly depends on the unit, as there are two factors to consider. First things first, some of these generators are more fuel-efficient – allowing them to go on for more as they consume less energy. Since they will adjust to the load, these power-efficient units can last quite a bit.
That being said, it will also depend on how many items you plug into the generator. For example, if you run it at full load, it probably won’t last more than 2 hours. On the other hand, if you run it at a 25% load (like most manufacturers advise you to), it can run for as long as 8 hours. The more appliances you plug into the generator, the shorter its running cycle will be.
- Can I use the portable generator indoors as well?
No, it is not recommended that you use the portable generator indoors. Even those that may be advertised as delivering “clean energy” may not be “clean” enough to put inside a closed room. After all, most of these generators use fossil fuel – which may still release a certain amount of toxic fumes. You may not feel them outside – but when they are indoors, they can be quite dangerous. If you really need to bring the energy indoors, install the unit outdoors, and use outlet extensions to bring the power inside.
When you are on the move and need a source of power, finding a reliable solution can be quite difficult. However, when you invest in the best quiet portable generators, you will know that your appliances will be safe and running – even when you are nowhere close to an electrical power source.
Hopefully, our quiet portable generator reviews proved useful in your quest of finding an appropriate unit for you. All of the models we presented were tried and tested by previous users, which is why we are confident they can be useful for you as well. You just need to carefully think about the features that matter to you the most and choose accordingly.
Check out our dual-fuel generator reviews, too!