The Best Small Portable Generators For 2024

Hailey Abbott By, Hailey Abbott
Best Small Portable Generators
Best Small Portable Generators

Our Top Picks

1. Best Overall: Westinghouse iGen4500 Generator

The Westinghouse iGen4500 Inverter Generator offers exceptional power solutions for outdoor activities and emergency backup, combining convenience and advanced technology in a portable design. Read Review

2. Best For The Price: WEN 56235i Generator

The WEN 56235i Inverter Generator combines clean, quiet power with a lightweight, portable design, making it an excellent choice for both leisure and emergency needs. Read Review

3. Best Lightweight: Champion Power Equipment Generator

The Champion Power Equipment Generator merges power with portability, offering a versatile solution for various power needs. This ultra-lightweight inverter is ideal for camping, tailgating, and emergency home backup. Read Review

4. Best Quiet Operation: PowerSmart Generator

The PowerSmart Generator offers a compact and efficient power solution, perfect for outdoor activities and emergency situations. This lightweight generator combines practicality with ease of use. Read Review

5. Best Efficient: A-iPower Generator

The A-iPower Generator combines exceptional power with advanced technology. Designed for versatility and efficiency, it’s the perfect choice for camping, tailgating, or emergency backup. Read Review

Small portable generators have become indispensable tools for outdoor enthusiasts, homeowners, and emergency preppers alike. Whether you're camping in the wilderness, tailgating at a big game, or facing a power outage at home, having a reliable power source can make all the difference.

In recent years, these compact powerhouses have evolved significantly. Modern small portable generators boast exceptional fuel efficiency, low noise levels, and clean energy output suitable for sensitive electronics. Their lightweight and portable designs make them easy to transport and store, ensuring you have power whenever and wherever you need it. Finding the right generator can be overwhelming with so many options available, from big retailers to specialized online stores. Here at Kris Van Assche, we meticulously researched numerous models each year to bring you the best. 

Our team spent about 16 hours researching, sifting, and selecting many high-quality models. As an outcome, we think the best small portable generators is Westinghouse iGen4500 Generator. This generator has a TT-30R RV Ready Outlet, two 20A household outlets, and USB ports, this generator is highly versatile for recreational and emergency use. In addition to the other suggestions on this list, which equally deserve your consideration, we have also compiled a helpful buyer's guide to assist you in making your decision.

Our Top Picks

TOP Choice #1 Westinghouse iGen4500 Generator
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Westinghouse Outdoor Power Equipment

The Westinghouse iGen4500 Inverter Generator is a premium option for those seeking reliable and efficient portable power. Featuring a TT-30R RV Ready Outlet, two 20A household outlets, and USB ports, this generator is highly versatile for both recreational and emergency use. Its variable engine speed enhances fuel efficiency, allowing it to run up to 18 hours on a 3.4-gallon fuel tank, making it ideal for extended use without frequent refuelling.

The iGen4500's Push-Button Electric Start and wireless remote start ensure easy ignition without manual effort. With less than 3% Total Harmonic Distortion (THD), it provides clean, stable power suitable for sensitive electronics, such as TVs, laptops, and mobile devices. The LED Data Center with a rotating digital display offers real-time information, keeping maintenance straightforward and timely. Nevertheless, it is a bit noisy at full load.

This generator is perfect for campers, RV enthusiasts, and those in need of a reliable emergency power source. It is the perfect choice for individuals who require portable energy for sensitive electronics, which guarantees that you remain sufficiently charged regardless of your location.

TOP Choice #2 WEN 56235i Generator
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The WEN 56235i Inverter Generator is engineered to provide clean and quiet power, producing 2350 surge and 1900 rated watts. Its 79cc 4-stroke OHV engine operates at an ultra-quiet 51 decibels at quarter load, making it ideal for use in camping, hunting, tailgating, and emergency backup scenarios. The eco-mode switch optimizes fuel consumption based on the connected load, preventing unnecessary gasoline usage. The fuel shutoff feature also ensures the generator uses up remaining fuel before shutting down, reducing maintenance and extending the unit’s lifespan.

With less than 0.3% THD at no load and under 1.2% at full load, the WEN 56235i provides pure sine wave output, protecting sensitive electronics like laptops, tablets, and phones. Though it provides excellent features, the WEN 56235i has a lower wattage output compared to larger generators. However, it compensates with its quiet operation and portability.

Ideal for campers, tailgaters, and anyone needing a quiet, portable power source, the WEN 56235i is designed for those who value low-noise operation and clean energy for sensitive electronics. It's great for outdoor lovers and people who want to be ready for emergencies because it's light and uses little gas.

TOP Choice #3 Champion Power Equipment Generator
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Champion Power Equipment

Weighing just 39 pounds, this generator is one of the lightest 2500-watt inverters available, making it exceptionally easy to transport. The hassle-free setup and built-in carrying handle add to its convenience. Equipped with Champion’s Inverter Technology, it features a smart Economy Mode that reduces the electrical load for quieter operation, extended engine life, and better fuel economy.

With a 1.1-gallon gasoline tank, this generator can run up to 11.5 hours at 25% load, ensuring long-lasting power. The noise level of 53 dBA from 23 feet makes it perfect for camping, tailgating, or providing backup for a few home essentials. Additionally, it offers 2500 starting watts and 1850 running watts, delivering reliable performance.

This generator provides clean power with less than 3% Total Harmonic Distortion (THD), ensuring the safety of sensitive electronics.  However, the generator's power output may not be sufficient for running high-demand appliances like air conditioners, but it is not a big deal.

This generator is perfect for those who need a reliable and portable power source for camping, tailgating, or emergency home backup. Its lightweight design and quiet operation make it ideal for outdoor enthusiasts and anyone requiring a convenient, easy-to-transport generator.

4 PowerSmart Generator
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The PowerSmart Generator is designed to be a compact and efficient power source for various outdoor activities. With 1200 starting and 900 running watts, this gas-powered generator is suitable for camping and other small-scale power needs. It features a 71cc 2-stroke engine with a single-cylinder forced air cooling system, ensuring reliable performance. 

This generator has one 120V 20A household outlet and a 12V DC plug, making it versatile for powering tools and smaller appliances. It also supports 12V battery charging, enhancing its utility. The 1.1-gallon fuel tank allows up to 5 hours of operation at 50% load, making it efficient for short-term use. Weighing only 37.8 pounds, the PowerSmart Generator is easy to transport, thanks to its carrying handle. The only downside is that it only has one outlet.

This generator is designed for campers and outdoor enthusiasts who require a lightweight, reliable power supply. It is an excellent option for anyone searching for a valuable and simple-to-use generator for outdoor activities and emergency use because of its small size and silent performance.

5 A-iPower Generator
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The A-iPower Generator boasts a powerful 60cc OHV high-performance 4-cycle engine. With 1,500 starting and 1,200 running watts, this generator delivers a high output while maintaining a quiet operation at only 52 dB. Its inverter technology ensures a pure power output with only 3% THD, making it safe for sensitive electronics like laptops, TVs, phone chargers, and power tools.

Besides, the fully loaded control panel features a CO sensor indicator light, data indicator lights, a Duplex 5-20R 20A 120VAC outlet, a 3.6A USB-A port, and a 3.0A USB-C port. It also allows you to connect two units for even more power. The generator’s low idle technology and compact design make it lightweight and easy to transport, weighing only 28.5 lbs. Although the fuel tank might be small for extended use, its efficiency helps maximize runtime. 

The A-iPower Generator is perfect for those who need reliable and portable power. It’s ideal for outdoor enthusiasts, campers, and tailgaters who require a quiet and efficient power source.

6 TogoPower Generator
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With a starting power of 1000W and a running power of 800W, this generator can support small household appliances such as blenders, coffee pots, blow dryers, fans, and lamps. This generator features a 120V AC output voltage, making it suitable for emergency power needs and outdoor activities.

The high combustion efficiency is achieved using 90# Petrol and oil mixing (50:1), providing reliable power on the go. With a full 1.1-gallon tank, it can run for six hours at 50% load, ensuring prolonged use without frequent refueling. The 63cc two-stroke OHV air-cooled engine offers dependable performance and is capable of handling various appliances efficiently. Weighing only 35 lbs, the TogoPower Generator is portable and easy to transport, making it ideal for outdoor adventures. Nevertheless, the instructions are not very clear.

The TogoPower Generator is perfect for campers, outdoor enthusiasts, and those needing a reliable backup power source for small household appliances. Whether you’re at a job site, enjoying the outdoors, or preparing for unexpected power outages, this generator’s lightweight design and robust performance make it a valuable addition to your gear. 

7 GENMAX Generator
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The GENMAX Generator provides a powerful 57cc 4-stroke OHV gas engine, delivering 1200 Starting Watts and 1000 Running Watts. With less than 3% Total Harmonic Distortion (THD), this clean power is safe for sensitive electronics such as TVs, lights, fans, and small power tools. Its compact design, weighing only 25.3 pounds, makes it one of the lightest 1000w inverters on the market, with a sturdy handle for easy transport over long distances.

This generator operates extremely quietly, producing just 58 dBA of noise at 25% load from 23 feet away, and boasts impressive fuel efficiency with up to 6.5 hours of runtime at 50% load on a 0.66-gallon gas tank. The "Economy Mode" feature maximizes fuel efficiency, making it a cost-effective option for extended use. Furthermore, the CO Detect shutdown sensor prevents carbon monoxide poisoning, ensuring safety. One minor drawback is that regular maintenance is required to ensure longevity. 

The GENMAX Generator is a good choice for campers, outdoor enthusiasts, and those needing a reliable power source for sensitive electronics. This generator is also suitable for homeowners seeking an emergency power backup for essential devices.

What to Look For in a best small portable generators?

Automatic Start

Whole home generators can automatically start when power goes out. This allows the generator to automatically start supplying power when there is no electricity from the utility. This feature is usually only available on standby generators, and not portables. These systems can provide peace of mind and may be more expensive than the security that your generator will automatically turn on without interrupting vital systems like heating and cooling.


You need to decide which generator type is best for you: a portable or standby generator. This will help you decide if you just want the lights to stay on or if you need to power other electrical components such as the refrigerator, window, central air conditioner, and the fridge.

Fuel Source

Generators are generally powered by either gasoline, natural gas or propane.
The majority of portable generators run on gasoline and can generally keep fridges and lights running for several hours. These generators can't be relied upon for long-term power backups, such as when there is no electricity for several days.
Propane and natural gas are used more often for large home-standby generators. These fuels can be used for larger home standby generators as they are cleaner-burning and offer on-demand power.
Solar or battery-powered power sources are an alternative to traditional fuel-powered generators. These machines have different capabilities, and their run time can vary widely. However, they might be the best match for you if your power requirements are less than minimal. They are typically used for camping only, not home.


A generator's wattage is the measure of its ability to provide power for whatever it plugs into. This information is crucial to understand about any generator that you are considering.
However, this number does not represent the entire picture. Wattage is made up of three parts: power needed to turn on an appliance and power required to maintain it running. It also includes power necessary to sustain a power surge, which is when regular juice returns to normal and all appliances start to work again. Many appliances use more power for startup than their run energy consumption. You could overload your generator when you turn on appliances and other devices. If the generator can't provide enough power, it could overload. You need to know how many watts your generator can generate, depending on whether it is powering just one item or the whole house.
An increase in generator costs is generally associated with a higher wattage. Most people agree that it's better to have enough power than not to be able to run your fridge or keep cool by a fan.


Installing home generators requires space. So make sure that you consider the dimensions of all models. You can find generators in a variety of sizes, from smaller units measuring less than 3ft to more large units measuring 5ft or more. A general rule of thumb is that the generator with the highest power rating will be larger.
Be aware that the clearance between your home and generator may be determined by local codes or model specifications. A small generator may require only 18 inches of clearance.


A warranty is usually included with the purchase of a generator. The warranty covers both labor and parts for most residential inverter and portable generators. For standby generators which can be larger investments, you will usually get a 3- to 52024 warranty period.
Certain warranties may also include travel expenses for technicians to visit the generator and fix it. However, this depends on which manufacturer you are using.


What are small portable generators used for?

Small portable generators are typically used for providing temporary power in situations where access to electricity may be limited or unavailable, such as during camping trips, outdoor events, power outages, or construction projects.

What size of generator do I need for my specific needs?

The size of generator you need will depend on the specific appliances or devices you plan to power. It's important to calculate the total wattage of all the items you want to run simultaneously and choose a generator that can handle that load.

How long will a small portable generator run on a full tank of gas?

The run time of a small portable generator on a full tank of gas will vary depending on the size and efficiency of the generator, as well as the load being placed on it. Generally, you can expect anywhere from a few hours to several days of run time on a full tank of gas.

Are small portable generators safe to use indoors?

Small portable generators should never be used indoors, as they produce carbon monoxide which can be deadly if inhaled in a confined space. Generators should always be used outdoors in a well-ventilated area.

How noisy are small portable generators?

The noise level of a small portable generator will vary depending on the model and size. Some generators are quieter than others, so it's important to consider noise levels when choosing a generator for your needs.

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About Hailey Abbott

Hailey Abbott
Hailey Abbott is an outdoor enthusiast and freelance writer for CampfireHQ. She has a passion for hunting and fishing, which she often enjoys with her family and friends. Hailey also enjoys staying active through sports such as golf, basketball, and softball. Hailey has worked as an editor for several years, providing content that is both accurate and engaging. She has also had the opportunity to interview numerous experts in various fields. This wealth of experience gives her a unique perspective when writing about the outdoors and other topics.

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