Have you ever been kept awake at night by the noise coming from a generator at work? If so, then you’ll understand the importance of finding a quiet generator, which is ideal for nighttime use.
Whether it’s for a campsite or a worksite, one of the most crucial factors to consider when shopping for a generator is the noise level, and you want to ensure that’s as low as possible. When making use of a generator around other people, the noise factor can be a major issue.
If you’re on this page, chances are that generator’s noise is a thorn in the flesh for you. But no need to worry; we’ve got your covered: Simply go through our quiet generator reviews.
Here are the best quiet generators we’ll be looking at in this article:
Top 7 Quiet Generators on the Market
WEN 56200i is among the best inverter generators of 2020 and works very quietly. The noise level of the unit is similar to an everyday conversation. Also, it supplies clean energy, which has no voltage drops and spikes.
Unlike conventional generators, the machine produces much less noise and is also ranked high among other inverter generators as regards noise level. The WEN 56200i delivers 1600 running watts and 2000 surge watts.
It has a 79.7 cc 4-stroke OHV engine, which runs at a super-quiet 51dB at a 25 per cent load. The generator is quieter than your window AC or a normal conversation between 2 people. This extremely low noise level makes it an excellent choice for situations — like tailgating, camping, or hunting — when you’re keen about keeping your generator operating as quiet as possible.
The generator, which was invented to emulate a pure sine wave, confines THD (total harmonic distortion) to below 0.3 per cent at 0% load and also below 1.2 per cent at 100% load. So, it can safely operate vulnerable electronics, such as your smartphone, tab, monitor, and laptops.
In addition to these, the design ensures that this quiet generator is extremely light to carry as well. Also, it’s a very fuel-efficient generator with its 1-gallon tank capable of running for up to 6 hours at 50 per cent load, which is a great result in comparison with nearly all the other generators currently on the market.
The unit offers one 12V DC receptacle, one 5v USB port as well as two three-prong 120V receptacles. With the economy mode throttle, the generator’s motor can automatically adjust the fuel consumption, preventing unnecessary usage of gasoline.
The WEN product provides a two-year warranty, backed by a nationwide network of competent service specialists, along with a friendly consumer helpline.
- Extremely quiet running at 51dB
- Easy to use
- Great value for money
- Lightweight as it’s easy to carry with just one hand
- Two-year warranty
- Features economy mode for enhanced fuel efficiency
- Friendly customer support service
- Plastic Finishing
- There’s no fuel valve
Honda EU3000iS Generator
The Honda’s EU3000iS features a quiet range of 49 – 58dB, which ensures it won’t constitute any sort of disturbance to your neighbors while working. It produces significantly less noise than a typical generator. Also, while the unit sips fuel, other similar generators guzzle it.
It features an eco-throttle mode, which enables rationing of the fuel. But when it’s even operating at full power, you can look forward to getting great ‘mileage’ out of the generator.
The machine starts with a quick pull and provides your home or campsite with reliable & safe power. But it’s hefty as it weighs well over 150 pounds (including fuel). Even with its small size, you need to take the weight into consideration before any other factor if you intend moving the generator often or making use of it in your residential vehicle or another vehicle.
One aspect of this unit you may not like is that it ships without oil. So, you must have oil handy to get it started on arrival. Also, you may want to get your tools ready to make sure everything is in its proper place before you start up the inverter.
Apart from oil (and possibly some tools), you’ll also want to get a 12V charger cable ready to charge external batteries because Honda doesn’t provide one with this inverter.
- Runs at 49 – 58 decibels
- Has low dBA output
- Electronics-safe inverter power
- Ensures efficient fuel consumption
- Auto shutoff when oil is low
- Eco-throttle to save fuel
- Features no USB outlets
- Weighs around 200 pounds (including fuel)
- Doesn’t ship with oil
The Atima AY2000i weighs about 50 pounds, making it a manageable portable generator with its major highlight being that it’s powered by a Yamaha engine. Yamaha is well-reputed for its motors, so you can expect high performance from this model.
And while the machine is lightweight by generator standards, you’ll find a set of wheels at one end for maneuverability. The shape of the unit is slightly bulky; however, overall it’s much trimmer compared with a lot of other inverter generators and has slightly better looks as well.
It’s an LCD display, which enhances the overall appearance. Apart from that, the aluminum styling blends in excellently wherever you want to make use of this generator. The integrated wheels make it easy to move it around. However, the narrow profile implies that you may be able to lug it by the handle without any hassle.
But due to its innovative design, you might be expecting more features, like a fuel gauge or other indicators. However, these are not available in the unit. Other than the aluminum casing & flashy paint job, you won’t find much options that are very modern about the inverter.
The Atima AY2000i does its job quite well and quietly as well. However, it still starts with a pull-cord and needs you to keep tabs on hours of operation to have an idea of the fuel consumption.
- Runs at 51 – 61 dBA
- Easy to move (wheels)
- Features Smart Throttle for fuel efficiency
- Yamaha engine
- Two-year support
- CARB Compliant
- No fuel gauge
Yamaha EF2000iSv2 Portable Inverter Generator
The Yamaha’s EF2000iSv2 is a lightweight and compact unit, which is one of the best quiet generators on the market. Also, it is among the smallest portable inverters out there.
Though it’s small, the model offers you a long runtime due to its remarkable fuel efficiency through the Smart Throttle. The Smart Throttle feature is a load-sensing RPM control for adjusting the engine speed depending on the load. It will help you save fuel and also helps in reducing noise when the machine is running at lower speeds.
You can get around 10.5hrs of runtime at 25% load, which is quite impressive for such a small unit. Also, you can make use of the generator’s parallel function for pairing it up with a 2nd generator from Yamaha (no cables included).
Concerning noise, the Yamaha EF2000iSv2 works within the range, 51.5 – 61dBA, and none of the 2 limits is terribly loud. It also comes with rubber vibration isolation feet that Yamaha says also helps in reducing noise and ensuring things run smoothly.
And when you need to stow the machine away, you’ll find the gasoline petcock quite useful. The option lets you cut off gasoline to the carburettor for storage, making sure that no buildup will occur when you break it out again for your next use.
Additionally, you may feel that it’s necessary to add to (or change) the oil frequently, partly because of the oil reservoir’s small size. But that’s just a minor drawback.
- Works quietly at 51dBA
- Smart Throttle for fuel efficiency
- 3-year warranty
- Offers easily visible fuel gauge
- CARB Compliant
- Oil Watch Warning system
- Gasoline petcock for storage
- Uses a lot of oil (yet, it’s small oil reserve)
Briggs & Stratton 30651 P2200
This Briggs & Stratton’s Inverter Generator, which features a computer-controlled engine, offers efficient and consistent power, which is also quiet. Easy-to-use, the unit delivers 1700W of power and can be transported without hassle, having a light weight of only around 55 pounds. While carrying handles are a great option on the machine, it’s really the lighter weight that helps the most for maneuverability.
As regards drawbacks, one potential issue with the model is that it won’t ship to customers in California. Sadly, the inverter generator will fail emissions rules for the state, and so far, the maker hasn’t designed an option that’s California-compliant.
While the decibel output is relatively low, it isn’t the quietest generator on the market. However, in terms of sticking to a budget, it could be your best choice, so long you’re not resident in California.
It provides an 8-hour runtime (at one-quarter rated load), which implies that you’ll have power aplenty for most of your needs for the whole day without going low on fuel.
But there’s no eco mode, so you won’t have much control over the fuel consumption other than powering down appliances.
Overall, the Briggs & Stratton unit is among our top choices for a handy and easy-to-run portable generator, which works reasonably quietly.
- Runs quietly at 59dBA operating volume
- Maneuverable (with handles) & lightweight
- Offers multiple outlets & parallel connector port
- USB compatible
- 2-year warranty
- Lower running Watts
- Doesn’t ship to California
Champion 4000-Watt DH Series Open Frame Inverter
The Champion’s DH Series Inverter is quieter than its predecessor and also 20% lighter. With its open frame, you’ll find it easy to handle. It makes use of Quiet Technology digital inverter components and has Clean Power with low total harmonic distortion.
The unit arrives fully assembled so you only need to add gas & oil, and you’re good to go. It’s a Quick Touch Panel, which makes adjustments quite simple. Also, we’ve Cold Start tech that makes sure you’ve power when you need it, no matter the environmental conditions. A 2.9-gallon fuel tank offers you plenty of run time.
The 64-dBA noise output is just slightly louder than a regular speech from about 23ft away, which means it’s significantly quieter than other generators from Champion. With Economy Mode, you can enjoy an even quieter operation with power consumption tracking to adjust the power output based on the appliances you connect or disconnect.
Overall, the Champion DH Series Open Frame unit is an excellent choice for remote power that lasts for its portable size and more than enough fuel tank. While it’s slightly louder than fully enclosed models, it compensates for that with the lighter weight and better portability.
- Runs at 64 dBA
- Lighter weight than an enclosed inverter
- Features ample fuel tank capacity
- Maneuverable due to the lightweight frame
- Has up to 17 hours runtime on 3500 continuous watts
- 3-year warranty
- Features Economy Mode with fuel-saving benefits
- Has lifetime technical support from Champion
- Parallel-ready with an optional Parallel Kit
- A bit louder than its fully-enclosed counterparts
Generac 6866 iQ2000 Generator
The Generac 6866 iQ2000 offers 3 modes of operation to help you achieve the least amount of noise possible based on your power needs. The PowerDial will enable you to start up the unit quickly, and a rocker switch will toggle between the 3 settings.
The light-up display tells you how much wattage the unit is generating, enabling you to determine the right setting and the appliances you can plug in. Also, there’s a runtime remaining display for gauging fuel remaining and plan accordingly.
You’ll find the display features great for monitoring output and fuel reserves. Also, these are 2 features we don’t get often on portable generators.
The machine weighs just under 50 pounds, and the top handle will help with maneuverability. The Generac 6866 iQ2000 is lighter than the majority of other inverter generators currently on the market.
One drawback you need to take note of is the requirement of this generator for pure fuel: It seems gasoline of low quality brings about some issues with the engine. You can aim to make use of high-quality gas if possible to prevent corrosion and rough operation.
You won’t find a specific decibel rating in the manufacturer’s outline, but the model likely won’t constitute any disturbance to the average person that engages in conversation, and that’s a plus as regards keeping noise to a minimum.
Also, the lower level outputs give rise to less noise, an ideal feature for running the quiet generator at night when you’ll only need an appliance like a fan or a small air conditioner unit.
- Runs at 53dBA
- Features PowerBar that shows wattage produced
- 7-hr runtime at 25 per cent load
- Adjustable engine speed helps lower noise
- PowerDial options
- Economy, Standard, and Turbo modes
- Time until empty indicator
- Seems sensitive as low-quality gasoline causes problems in the engine
FAQs about Quiet Generator Reviews
Can I use one of those quiet generators to power a whole house in an emergency?
No, that’s not possible. Nearly all the quiet generators come with a maximum running wattage of no more than 4000W, and that’s not enough to provide electricity for the whole house.
What is the size of generator I need?
The first step you need to take here is to determine which appliances and devices you’re planning to run. Then, add their combined wattage to see if it’s less than your generator’s total wattage.
Don’t know how to do this calculation? You can learn more here.
How loud is a generator with a 74dB noise level?
74dB is a noise level that’s comparable with your average vacuum cleaner. A portable generator that runs at this level can constitute quite a nuisance to you and your neighbors. Fortunately, none of the options above works at this disturbing sound level.
Can I make use of a muffler for quieting a generator?
Yes, you can make use of a muffler for further reducing the noise levels produced by a portable generator. In some quiet generators, like the Yamaha EF2000iSv2 reviewed above, there’s already a built-in muffler, ensuring you won’t have any need to buy one separately.
But it’s not all small quiet generators that work well with external mufflers. Hence, consider checking it before purchasing one, whether it supports an external muffler or not.
In any case, the one-size-fits-all solution we’ll recommend is to buy a dedicated enclosure.
Are propane-powered generators considered quieter?
Generally, whether a portable generator is powered by gas or propane, it makes no much difference to the sound level. It’s the design that’s more important. For instance, Champion Power Equipment 3400 Watt Propane Generator works very quietly, and that’s due to the fact that it’s a well-built RV generator. That it accepts propane is just a handy addition instead of something that makes the unit quieter.
Are the generators above quiet enough to use at official campgrounds?
If your campground has it on the list of its rules that portable generators aren’t permitted to be used at all times, then you can’t use one in that place no matter how quiet the unit is. But nearly all the federal campgrounds obey a general rule, which states that portable generators that run under 59dB are allowed to be used during the non-quiet times (typically before 10 PM).
Also, you can consider buying a portable solar power charger. Those portable generators are not only noiseless but also powerful enough to supply electricity for smaller electronics, like mobile phones, laptops, cameras, and camping lights.
In any case, consider checking the individual rules of each campground and ensure that you do your best to reduce the disruption caused to your neighbors.
Is it necessary I ground a generator?
There’s obviously no harm in grounding your generator to give yourself additional peace of mind. But if you use a modern inverter generator, no need for that. Lots of people make use of them without grounding, and they’ve no issues.
How long does a portable generator last?
This is dependent on 2 factors. One, certain generators have better fuel efficiency than others, which means they use less gas, which allows them to last longer on a single refuel.
They can achieve it due to different hi-tech techniques, which adjust the way the engine works based on current electricity consumption.
Two, it depends on the number of appliances you plug into your generator. The majority of companies advertise the runtime of a portable generator at a quarter rated load.
But if you choose to plug in an appliance, which consumes almost all the available running wattage; that means the generator will be working at nearly 100 per cent load and will consume much more fuel.
If you want to get rough estimates, keep in mind that on average, a typical camping generator can last for 6 – 8 hours.
If you’ve ever been kept awake at night by the disturbing noise of a generator running, you’ll agree that the import of using a quiet generator, perfect for nighttime use, cannot be gainsaid.
Whether it’s for your camp or work site, noise level is among the most crucial factors to take note of when looking to buy a portable generator. And you want to make sure that it’s as low as possible.
When using a generator around neighbors and/or other people, the noise factor could constitute a major problem. One of the best ways to resolve is to ensure you do your homework well before selecting a unit to buy.
Our quiet generator reviews will come handy in this regard. In the heart of today’s post, we’ve discussed the features and capabilities of the following generators:
- WEN 56200i
- Honda EU3000iS Generator
- Atima AY2000i
- Yamaha EF2000iSv2 Portable Inverter Generator
- Briggs & Stratton 30651 P2200
- Champion 4000-Watt DH Series Open Frame Inverter
- Generac 6866 iQ2000 Generator
All these options work below 65dB, making them perfect for use at night in your home or on campsites, where the maximum noise level of a generator, especially during the non-quiet times (often before 10 PM), is set at 59 decibels.