what can a 10000 watts generator run

What Can a 10,000 Watts Generator Run?

A 10,000 Watt Generator is massive, you can run many household appliances simultaneously.  

In fact, 10,000 watt is a lot of energy that can power many appliances that are power consuming. It’s bigger than what a 3500 watt or 7500-watt generator can run, it’s in the league of mega performing machines.

Whether it’s running your water heater, electric heater, furnace, and electric gadgets, you can expect this generator to handle it.  However, it’s not a pass to run all your electronics at the same time. You should know a couple of things about how a generator is sized before you proceed.

 This is to avoid wearing down the generator and destroying its efficiency and ultimately shortening the lifespan. You don’t want that, do you? 

So let’s proceed..

Starting Watt and Running Watt

It’s crucial to know the starting watt and running watt of the generator and an appliance as well. This unit of measurement is used to quantify the amount of energy that is transferred or the energy needed to power certain electronics in terms of a generator. 

Simply put, the starting and running watt of your generator should be more than that of all the equipment you want to run when put together.  Starting Watts: Also known as a surge or maximum watt is the amount of energy required to start an appliance.

In most cases, this surge watt is important in powering larger appliances such as air conditioners, power tools, and refrigerators, etc. These power-consuming machines need a short and massive boost to get their motor running. 

Running Watts; running watt is simply the power needed after the starting watt has powered the motor to run the appliances. For more information about sizing your generator, read this article. 

Best 10,000 Watt Generator On the Market – Our Top Picks 


What Can a 10,000 Watts Generator Power? 

A 10,000-watt generator should be able to handle pretty much most household appliances. The question of running them all at a time depends on the starting and running watts of the appliances when put together.  These estimates of common appliances and their wattages. Knowing the rough watt estimate will allow you to size your generator properly.

  • Incandescent Light Bulb – 60 watts
  • Refrigerator/Freezer – 700 watts
  • Microwave – 800 watts
  • Toaster – 850 watts
  • Coffee Maker – 800 watts
  • Dishwasher – 300 watts
  • Electric stove – 1,500 watts
  • Small AC unit – 1,200 watts
  • Laptop – 200 watts
  • Television – 200 watts
  • Phone charger – 5 watts

Appliances A 10,000 Watt Generator Can Run for Different Purposes 

People use generators for diverse purposes. The most common being blackouts, camping, Rving, worksite, and tailgating.  For each scenario, you need different power needs. I will break down examples of equipment you can run in these conditions using a 10,000-watt generator. 

House Hold 

For the household purpose, most people would need a generator to power a lot more than other conditions. Especially during storms when the aftermath is extended periods of blackouts.  A freezer for example will need 2200 starting watts and 700 running watts.

  Also, window central ac of 10,000 BTU has a starting watt of 3600, and the running watt is about 1200. You can also throw in a space heater which requires 1800 running watt and 0 starting watt. 

Say most of the appliances you want to run will require massive power to start and run that the generator can’t handle. You may trade-off which appliance you will turn on. Other small electronic gadgets like your phone need just 5 watts, Laptop/Pc requires about 300 watts.

If you can keep the lights out in certain parts of your home, then you will save a lot of power that could go into power some important tools.  It is important to ensure that the generator can well handle all the running and starting watt of the generator you want to power.

As these watts are mostly estimates, you should find out the actual power rating of each appliance before you buy a generator. 

Work Site 

On a worksite, the basic things you need to power are Power tools. Worksite tools also demand a great amount of power. But for the most part, a 10,000 watt generator should handle it as well.   A typical electric drill requires about 600 starting watts and 300 running watts.

The hammer drill requires about 3000 starting watt and 1000 running watt.  Other power demoing tools like the Circular Saw 7 ¼” typically requires 1400 running and 2300 starting watt. 

Even heavy machines like the Air compressor which demands about 45000 watts to start and 1600 to run will be handled well by a generator of this size.  You can also throw in a couple of light power tools like the Halogen work light which requires 300 running watts and 0 starting watts.

The Reciprocating saw requires 900 running watts and 0 starting watts.  Ensure that all the appliances you want to power do not exceed the starting or running watt of the generator. If you want to power a lot more, then you need to use the logic of selective usage. 

Rving/ Camping / Tailgating 

This two fall in about the same category. When you are setting out for either camping or Rving, you don’t need to carry or transport say an electric oven or typical household equipment that are power consuming.  The basic thing you need is an Electric grill for barbeques which typically requires 0 starting watts and 1650 running watts.

A box fan requires 200 running watt and 0 starting watt. You will need a couple of extras like your smartphone, laptop, mini speaker the energy required by these appliances is almost negligible to the power a 10,000-watt generator holds.  RVs provide enough space for larger appliances such as air conditioner, refrigerator, and freezer.

10,000 watts is more than enough to handle these appliances. Most air conditioners starting power are about 3000 watts and for a refrigerator and freezer, you roughly need 700 running and 1200 watts continuous watt.  1

0,000 should be able to handle all your needs when camping or tailgating. However, if you are traveling in a group and lots of your company bring small gadgets along.  You might need an Inverter generator on the side to power the appliances while the generator handles the heavy ones. 


A 10,000 watt portable generator is massive and versatile but I’ve noticed they come at a steep price. If you treat it as an investment then it becomes a bargain when you consider what you are to lose without electricity.  On average, most users would not need more than 10,000 watts.

However, if you do, then whole-house generators are ideal for such functions. Whole house generators hold up to 20,000 watts, Imagine what that amount of power can run.  If you have questions, don’t hesitate to use the contact page. We will get back to you with helpful solutions. 


Estimated Wattage

Kitchen Electronic applianceRunning (Contiguous Watts)Additional Starting (Surge Watts)
Coffee Maker10000
Electric Can Opener1700
Deep Freezer5001500
Food Processor4000
Electric Stove (8" Element)21000

EntertainmentRunning (Rated Watts)Additional Starting (Surge Watts)
Video Game System400
VCR/DVD player1000
Security System5000

Heating/Cooling Appliances Running (Rated Watts) Additional Starting (Surge Watts)
Light Bulb 60 Watt600
Space heater18000
Furnace Fan Blower 1/2 HP8002350
Furnace Fan Blower 1/3 HP7001400
Window AC 10,000 BTU1200 3600
Window AC 12,000 BTU 32509750
Central AC 10,000 BTU15004500
Central AC 24,000 BTU380011400
Central AC 40,000 BTU 600018000
Heat Pump45004700
Well Water Pump 1/2 HP 1000 2100
Garage Door Opener (1/2 HP) 875 2350

Laundry Appliance(s)Running (Continuous Watts)Additional Starting (Surge Watts)
Iron 12000
Curling Iron 1500 0
Washing Machine 1150 2250


Wattage Estimate

Tailgating/Camping ApliancesRunning (Surge Watts)Additional Starting (Surge watts)
Electric Grill 1650 0
AM/FM Radio 100 0
CD/DVD Player 100 0
Box Fan - 20" 200 0


Wattage Estimate

Office AppliancesRunning (Continuous Watts)Additional Starting (Surge Watts)
Personal Computer w/17" Monitor 800 0
Fax Machine 65 0
Laser Printer 950 0
Inkjet Printer 80 0
Copy Machine 1600 0


Wattage Estimate

Work Appliance(s)Running (Continuous Watts)Additional Starting (Surge Watts)
Quartz Halogen Work Light300 300
Quartz Halocen Work l.iqht, 500 500
Quartz Halogen Work Light, 1000 1000
Airless Sprayer - 1/3 HP 600 1200
Reciorocatinq Saw 960 0
Electric Drill-3/8 ", 4 Amps 440 600
Electric Drill-1/2 ", 5.4 Amps 600 900
Hammer Drill 1000 3000
Circular Saw - 7 1/4 1400 2300
Miter Saw - 101800 1800
Planer/Jointer - 61800 1800
Table Saw/Radial Arm Saw 102000 2000
Belt Sander 1200 2400
Air Compressor - 1/4 HP 975 1600
Air Compressor 1 HP 1600 4500

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