Are you looking for the best 10000 Watt Generator? We select three excellent 10Kw generators we feel are worth your money.
A 10000-watt generator is one of the best sizes for most people’s needs. While they’re large heavy machines, they’re still considered to be portable generators – wheel kits and handles make them easier to move. It’s not too easy to answer the question which is the best 10000-watt generator? There are so many to choose from. Though we’ve found few that stand out from the crowd and have been met with great enthusiasm among the people who have bought these generators and put them to work in all sorts of conditions.
Because these are powerful machines with large engines, their prices can be quite steep. So we should consider affordability as being quite high on the list of priorities when choosing the best 10000-watt generator. Going cheap is all good and well but, even then, they’ll never be too cheap. So you want to know that you’re getting what you pay for. Quality and durability are very important.
A 10000W generator will meet most of your household needs as far as electricity supply goes. This makes them an invaluable lifesaver when a natural disaster strikes and you’re left in the dark for days. Using a 10000W generator, you’re able to keep a refrigerator (or two) powered up, as well as your AC, sump pump and all the essentials – lights, TV and most other general appliances. These generators are also great for contractors as they provide enough power to keep a whole lot of power tools running at the same time. They’ll also supply the amps needed for high-power equipment like air compressors and table saws. Their portability makes them ideal for working on site and to supply power to your RV for camping trips. It’s the ultimate power supply for an outdoor vacation because 10KW gives you the power to have all the creature comforts of home, no matter where you are.
Okay, so there are plenty of reasons why you may want one of these portable generators, but can you find good quality 10000W generator that’s still affordable? We’ve done the research and found a few models that not only give you the quality and power that you’re looking for, but they all come at a very reasonable price. For this review of the best 10000W generator, we’ve chosen three great products:
All of these generators are rated for a peak power of 10000W (or very close to this), their constant load power output will be about 75%-90% of the rated peak (surge) watts. This means that they can handle a constant load of between 7500 and 9000 watts depending on which model we’re looking at. The DuroMax and Pulsar generators can handle a peak power output of 10000W for about a second or two, allowing for high-current startup equipment, like refrigerators, air conditioners, pumps and power tools. The Champion Power generator has a slightly lower power output, but not by much – for all intents and purposes, this is basically a 10000W generator.
I should point out, before reviewing these 10000W generators that they are not in the same league as the really expensive heavy-duty machines – like the 10KW Honda, DeWalt or Cat generators. This begs the question: why do we see these models as the best 10000W generators? It comes down to price vs durability and features. I suppose that if you’re planning to buy a generator that’s going to work hard all day, every day, it would be worth considering the high-end machines. But how many of us are going to work our generator that hard on a constant basis?
When it comes down to it, we need to strike a balance between how much we’re paying for the generator and what our expectations are. The three generators that we’ve chosen have proven themselves to be reliable workhorses. For most home users and many contractors, these generators will provide many years of faithful service and won’t cost you an arm and a leg. So it’s very much about value for money. To this end, these machines can certainly be classified as the best 10000W generators. Each has their own strong points. It’s really a matter of looking at what features they offer and deciding which one is going to best meet your needs.
10, 000W peak 8000W rated (gas); 9000W peak 7000W rated (LPG)
- 10, 000W peak 8000W rated (gas); 9000W peak 7000W rated (LPG)
- Switch & go- while the generator is running, switch from LPG to gas or gas to LPG
- Electric push start with recoil back-up, Battery included
- 420cc, 15 HP OHV engine
- Four 120V, one 120V/240V twist-lock, & one 120/240V 50A RV Receptacles
As the only hybrid generator in this review, the Pulsar PG10000B16 is unique in this regard. The advantage of dual-fuel (hybrid) engines has been discussed in many reviews, so I’ll just mention the basics. A dual-fuel generator can run on either gas or Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG), offering you the versatility to use either fuel source. Propane-powered engines have become very popular in recent times for a number of reasons. This is, in part, because of environmental concerns but LPG is also safer to store and transport and is usually far more economical to use. If you want to know more about the benefits of propane engines, this article goes into some detail on the topic: Propane Powered Generator Reviews. The only downside to using propane to power a generator is that the engine produces less horsepower than it would when running on gas. This means a lower kilowatt rating for propane.
The 420cc, 15 HP, OHV, four-stroke engine fitted to the Pulsar PG10000B16 is a great piece of machinery and produces the highest running watts out of the three generators in this review – 9000W using gas and 7000W when running on propane. When using gas, you’ll get a peak (surge) power of 10000W (8000W for propane). There’s a large dial on the front of the machine to select the fuel source and you can switch over from gas to propane while the engine is running. There will be no interruption in your electrical supply, should you decide to change the fuel source whilst using the generator. This engine is protected by low oil shutoff so you don’t run the risk of destroying it if the oil runs low. I don’t see any mention of CARB certification (either on their website or in the owner’s manual), so all indications are that this generator is not certified for use in California.
The Pulsar PG10000B16 is incredibly easy to use and the owner’s manual gives very detailed instructions on how to start and use the generator for both gas and LPG. It has a large 6.5-gallon gas tank and the fuel consumption is very reasonable for a generator of this size – 8-hours from a tank of gas at 50% of the rated load. This works out to about 5-kilowatt-hours per gallon of gas. I don’t have official specs for the runtime when using propane but my estimate would be around 10-hours on a 20 LBS propane tank at the same load. You have the convenience of an electric starter and the peace of mind that it has a recoil starter as a backup when the battery fails.
The control panel is one of the best for logical layout and ease of use. It has four standard 120V household power outlets, a 120V/240V twist-lock receptacle, and a 120V/240V 50A RV receptacle. The outlets are nicely grouped together with thermal overload circuit breakers for each group directly above the outlets. It’s very easy to find the correct circuit breaker for the circuit that has tripped. All the AC outlets have GFCI protection. You also get an 8.5A 12V battery charging outlet. There’s a digital display, providing readings for running hours, voltage, and frequency.
This is a sturdy 209-pound brute with a tough powder coated frame that can handle some abuse whilst transporting it – without scratching too easily. Rust shouldn’t be a problem with this generator. No one will enjoy lifting this machine but it has large 9” solid rubber wheels and fold-down handles that are long enough to allow you to pull or push the generator with ease, even over rough terrain. The wheels, together with thick rubber feet at the front end help to reduce any vibration produced by the running of the engine.
Pulsar is a US brand with over 100 years of experience behind them. There’s a certain level of confidence that comes with buying from a manufacturer like this and they’ve teamed up with Ford in developing many of their products. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend the pulsar PG10000B16 to anyone looking for an affordable, high-quality 10000W hybrid generator.
8000 Running Watts / 10000 Starting Watts
- Duromax 16 HP 4 stroke air cooled engine
- Max AC output: 10,000-Watt
- Rated AC output: 8,000-Watt
- Displacement: 420cc, bore: 90, stroke: 66
- Low oil shutoff protects engine
- Quiet muffler reduces engine noise
- Fuel tank capacity: 8.3 Gal.
- Quiet exhaust with built-in spark arrestor
- Cast iron sleeve and steel bearings maximize engine life
- 12-Volt battery for electric starter
- Extra large 10-1/2 in. never flat knobby style solid fill tires
- Flip-up stow away handles
DuroMax generators often feature in reviews of the best generators of all sizes and descriptions. Their reputation for supplying tough, hard-working generators at a price that suits just about anyone has made them a firm favorite across the board. With 8000 running watts and 10000 peak watts, the DuroMax XP10000E fits nicely into the category of best 10000W generators.
I should just clear up a matter that has caused some confusion regarding the XP10000E as far CARB certification is concerned. On the Amazon website, I saw this model listed as being both CARB and EPA certified. This is not the case. The DuroMax XP10000E is EPA certified but not CARB certified. DuroMax sells the same generator with a CARB certified engine (DuroMax XP10000E-CA), I guess the CA at the end stands for California. The specs for both models will be the same, CARB certification usually requires some modifications to the fuel system, carburetor and muffler, all other components won’t differ to those used in the manufacturing of either generator.
Full Featured Control Panel
The 16 HP engine with low oil protection is safe to use, durable and isn’t very noisy for a generator of this size. It has a very generous 8.3-gallon gas tank that will give you 10-hours of runtime at 50% load, which translates to 4.8-kilowatt-hours per gallon – slightly less thirsty than the Pulsar. The DuroMax XP10000E has both electric and recoil starting, like the others which is really cool.
The control panel on the DuroMax isn’t quite as comprehensive as that on the Pulsar with fewer standard household outlets and isn’t as well laid out either. Though I wouldn’t say that it’s difficult to understand or use this generator and it has a 120V 30A outlet. This is something the Pulsar doesn’t have and can be very handy if you’re using large power tools or other high-current 120V equipment. One thing that I really like on the DuroMax is the idle control switch. If you’re going to be using the generator for an extended time period, you may often find that it’s going to run for long periods with no load.
Most generators will continue running at full revs, even when there’s no power demand. This wastes fuel and it can be an irritation as far as unnecessary noise is concerned. The DuroMax XP10000E allows you to switch the generator so that it lowers the revs to idle RPM when there isn’t a demand for electricity. This is going to save on fuel and reduce noise levels. It has two standard 120V household outlets, a 120V 30A outlet, a large 120V/240V 50A outlet for connecting power directly to your house wiring, and a 120V/240V RV outlet. All these circuits are protected by individual circuit breakers and there’s a main 33A circuit breaker. The DuroMax XP10000E also has a 12V battery charging outlet and you also get an old-fashioned analog voltmeter.
The square tubing frame offers great protection and provides better protection for the fuel tank than most open frame generators. The large wheels are really impressive with good tread and steel rims. It has good fold down handles, similar to those on the Pulsar. The DuroMax XP10000E is even heavier than the Pulsar, weighing 249 LBS, lifting this generator is a tough job.
The DuroMax is designed to give you great service for many years, it really is a tough machine. It’s very similar to Pulsar in most respects but doesn’t have as many standard power outlets. It does have the advantage of 30A 120V outlet which great for large power tools and it has the idle control which can be of great benefit to most users. These are some obvious reasons why so many consider the DuroMax XP10000E to be the best 10000W generator.
9375 starting watts, 7500 running watts with up to 8 hours run time on a full tank of gas
- Wireless Remote Start – Start and stop with ease from up to 80 ft. away with the included wireless remote key fob – push-button power and convenience like never before
- Ultra-Powerful – At 9375 starting Watt and 7500 running Watt, enjoy up to 8 hours of run time on a full tank of gasoline with a noise level of 74 dBA from 23 ft.
- Electric Start – Trust the reliable 439cc Champion engine with its battery-included electric start featuring a 3-way ignition switch, plus built-in Cold Start Technology for easy starts in cold weather
- Covered Outlets – 120/240V 30A locking, 120/240V 50A RV, 120V 30A RV, four 120V 20A GFCI – Volt Guard built-in surge protector prevents overloads and keeps your appliances and equipment safe
- Champion Support – includes 3-year limited warranty with free lifetime technical support from dedicated experts
✓ View or download the MANUAL for the Champion Power Equipment 100161
The Champion 7500W has its limitations when compared to the other two generators in this review, in that it delivers 7500-watts of continuous running power and 9375 peak watts. This is only a small difference and shouldn’t affect your use of the generator too much. The biggest advantage of this generator is the remote control. You can switch the generator on or off from a reasonable distance (80 FT). It’s also the only generator in this review that’s both EPA and CARB compliant, good news for Californians. There are a few other subtleties that might see you prefer this one over the others, like plastic covers for the electrical outlets that protect them from dust and moisture.
The 439cc OHV engine is great and has a noise level of only 74dBA from 23-feet away, one of the best in this class of open-frame generators. Fuel consumption is good, very similar to the other two. The 6.1-gallon gas tank will keep the generator running for 8-hours at 50% load – just under 5-kilowatt-hours per gallon. This engine has low oil shutoff and a quick drain oil tube, making for easy oil changes without the risk of splashing used oil all over the place. It has electric and recoil starters and the cold-start technology makes it effortless to start in all weather conditions.
It has a simple and well laid out control panel offering 2 X duplex 120V 20A household power outlets (a total of 4 outlets), 120V/240 30A locking outlet, 120V/240V 30A RV outlet, and a 120V/240V 50A RV/house power outlet. All these AC power outlets are GFCI protected and have overload circuit breaker protection. The only thing you’re not getting, when compared to the other two, is a 12V battery charging outlet. It has a digital display for volts, frequency and running hours.
Like the others, the Champion Power 7500W has a tough steel frame with great solid wheels. This model also has steel rimmed wheels – I prefer these to plastic rims. The fold-down handle on this generator might be preferred by some, it has a U-handle design which offers a more versatile gripping position than the dual handles used on the other two. At 230 LBS, it’s in a similar weight category to the other two- tending toward the heavier side.
Despite the lower power output, the Champion 7500W has its merits when compared to the other two generators in this review. The inclusion of remote starting and stopping may just sway many people’s opinions in favor of this generator. As a brand, Champion Power Equipment has a solid reputation and you’ll get a great 3-year warranty on this generator.
Connecting a 10000W generator to your home
The biggest advantage of having a portable generator this size is that it can handle most of your household electrical requirements. To safely connect a generator to your house, you’ll need to use a transfer switch. This makes it safe to switch between generator and utility power and will prevent any harm coming to your generator or your person. You get many different transfer switch kits that include everything you need to ensure safe connection and operation of a portable generator for your house. I’d recommend using a professional electrician familiar with this type of installation to do it for you. Even though the kits have detailed instructions and include all the necessary cabling and breakers, it isn’t a simple DIY job and needs to be certified as being compliant with local regulations.
Most transfer switch kits for a portable generator include a large 50A plug which means you can easily connect your generator to your home. It’s just as quick, easy and safe to disconnect the generator for storage or to use it elsewhere. While this is all very convenient and easy, there are some limitations to using a 10000W generator to power your home during an outage. Depending on the size of your home and the type of electrical equipment that you expect to be using, a 10000W generator will usually mean that you have to forgo some circuits in your home to allow for the maximum wattage that the generator delivers. This means selecting only certain circuits to run off generator power.
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You want to make sure that you don’t overload the generator. While it’s not going to harm the generator or put you at any risk, overloading the generator circuit is going to cause the circuit breaker to trip. This will become very irritating if it happens all the time. So it’s a good idea to calculate your expected consumption to make sure that your needs are within the capabilities of the generator. This is not an exact science because you can’t be certain what equipment you’ll be using and when. There are many appliances that start automatically like refrigerators and air conditioners that use a thermostat to control them. This means that you don’t have complete control over your power consumption.
All things considered, it’s not essential that you limit all your appliances to within the output of your generator. A certain amount of common sense can help you ascertain the likelihood of all these appliances being used at the same time. If you’re prepared to be aware of these limitations when using the generator, you can make provision for a lot more than what the generator can handle at one time. You just need to be aware that you can’t use everything at once and always keep in mind that some appliance can switch on at any time.
One needs to start by looking at what is essential equipment and what would be nice if it’s possible. I recommend using gas for your cooking needs when running on a generator – electric stoves use massive amounts of power. Connecting a water heater also isn’t a good idea. Depending on your hot water storage capacity, the type of heat insulation that you’re using and your hot water consumption, it’s possible to keep your hot water supply adequately warm for up to two days (possibly three). A central heating furnace could be critical if you live in a very cold climate, though this can use 4KW or more so you may want to consider using a space heater during power outages. Air conditioners aren’t too bad, as long as it’s only a room AC and not a centralized unit with a large compressor. Below is a list of a typical household power consumption set up for a generator circuit.
- Mid-sized refrigerator 850W (1800W peak)
- Deep freeze 850W (1800W peak)
- Air conditioner 1200W (2500W peak)
- Sump pump 650W (1300W peak)
- Microwave oven 800W (1750W peak)
- Plasma TV 120W
- Desktop computer with monitor 350W
- Surround sound system 40W
- 10 X 20W CFL lights 200W
- Space heater 1000W
- Electric kettle 1200W
— Maximum continuous watt requirement : 7260W
— Maximum load including starting watts : 12060W
By this, you can see that our maximum continuous wattage falls just in range of the continuous power rating of the Champion Power generator that we’ve just reviewed, with a bit more to spare if you’re using either of the other two generators. The peak starting watts is more than any of these generators can supply. Not to mention that there are some small items that don’t appear on this list like cell phone chargers. Though it’s not important to include equipment like this, they only draw a few watts, so having the big stuff covered is what’s important here.
Even though this peak wattage might lead you to believe that a 10000W generator isn’t going to cut it, applying some simple logic will help. You’re not likely to be using all this equipment at once. If you’re using the AC, you’re not going to be using a space heater. Then we also need to take into account that it’s highly unlikely that all the high-current startup appliances are going to start at exactly at the same time. We also have some control over the situation. If you’re going to be using the microwave, for example, it’s not going to take too much effort to switch off the air conditioner for a while or make sure that the electric kettle is not in use at this time. If you want to use a hairdryer (±1000W) or an iron that draws a similar wattage, the same will apply. You just need to make sure that you’re not running too many appliances at the same time.
When it comes down to it, a 10000W generator is going to handle all these appliances with very little compromise on your part. If you do end up overloading the generator, this will be seldom. It’s unlikely that you’ll be running back and forth to reset the breaker all the time. It won’t take you long to get used to this – a few trips to the breaker box and you’ll soon learn what’s possible with the generator that you’re using.