The Generac GP8000E (7676) is a new portable generator with PowerRush technology, giving it 30% more starting power — *READ our review published on Aug 22, 2019. Generac makes a range of 8000W generators, we look at several of their top models.
Below, top selling Generac 8000W (and more wattage) generators :
- ✓ Generac 5747 : 8,000W Running / 10,000W Starting
- Generac 5846 : CARB-Compliant : 10,000W Running / 12,500W Starting
- Generac 5847 : CSA Approved : 10,000W Running / 12,500W Starting
They all share the same features. We put together this guide to help you decide if this is the right portable generator for your needs.
Why Buy A Generator?
A generator can be used in many different situations from powering up your home or electrical appliances in an emergency or for camping trips. Some occupations even rely on portable generators as a power source for tools while working on job a site. No matter what the need is, if you’re looking for a generator there are some factors that you’ll need to keep in mind.
First and foremost you should know that generators come in a vast selection of sizes and types. Some are portable while others are meant to power an entire home or even a business building. The average consumer in the market for a generator will likely be looking for something more within the range of a portable unit.
Generator Size Matters (learn more)
Let’s discuss wattage for a moment. When you are shopping around and looking at different models and types of generators one of the first things you’ll notice is that they go by wattage. This label indicates the maximum amount of power it will put out. You’ll also see a wattage reference that is labeled as ‘rated’ which is typically about 90% of the generator’s maximum output and will give you longer run-time at that consumption.
The generator size you need will vary depending on the intended use and how much power the appliances you’ll be running it on take. Appliances that run on an electric motor will require more wattage to start up. Let’s say you’re looking at running larger electrical appliances such as a refrigerator or air conditioning units (window). You would need a generator size of at least 2,500 – 4,000 watts to run those appliances alone. When you’re looking at the wattage, also be mindful of the running watts vs. starting watts – most electrical appliances require higher starting wattage.
Portable Generator vs. Stand-by Generator
Another important consideration when looking at generator sizes is the distinction between portable vs. stationary generators. Stationary generators are larger units intended for powering up an entire house or building. These can range in power from 5,000 – 20,000 watts and are much more expensive. These should be installed by a professional.
Portable generators are much more common for typical use given the fact that they can conveniently provide power where you need it. Portable generators range in power providing 3,000 – 8,500 watts and typically cost between $400 to $1,500.
Generac generators are the leading brand in portable generators due to their innovation and top notch quality. A distinctive trait in Generac generators is the engines that they operate on. The company is one of the few that manufactures its engines in the U.S. specifically for generator-use as opposed to cross-over lawn mower motors that other companies use. More specifically, Generac 8000 watt generator engines in their XP series is one of the few in its class that are not sourced from China.
Connect your Generac 8000 Watt Generator to your transfer switch.
Common Uses for an 8,000-Watt Generator
For the purpose of this article we’ll be focusing more on 8,000-watt generators as a generator this size will power up most of your basics and then some. Most users who are looking for a generator do so as a means of a backup power alternative in the event of a blackout or for powering up a camper. Many homeowners will be able to power up a majority of their appliances on 3,000 to 6,5000 watts, not including their water/heating/air conditioning systems.
Aside from a backup source of power in the event of an emergency, there are many other uses where a generator comes in handy. These include:
- Recreational – RVing, tailgating, etc.
- Industrial – contractors, construction workers
- Farming – farm equipment
An 8,000-watt portable generator should be plenty sufficient to power an RV with no problem. This, of course is subject to the wattage consumption of the air conditioner system, which is the primary appliance that will be running on the generator. Tailgaters that don’t want to kill the battery of their vehicle would also find use in a portable generator for powering up a small television, radio, laptop computer and much, much more.
Contractors and those who work in construction frequently use power tools for the job. These often consist of tools that require electricity to run, which may not be readily available on the job site. A large construction crew that is using many different power tools simultaneously will greatly benefit from using a Generac 8,000 watt generator to get the job done more efficiently. Even farmers and those that work in agriculture can rely on generators.
Should You Invest in a Generator?
Now this question depends on how useful a generator would be to you. Do you live in an area that is prone to blackouts, particularly during a specific time of year? Consider how much food and money wasted from having to throw out cold items each time you lost power for a prolonged period of time. Depending on the time of year, you could find yourself faced in a very uncomfortable and even dangerous position without a source for heat or air. The same could be said for those who enjoy spending time in the great outdoors RVing as well.
Generator Features to Consider
Most consumers that seek out a generator often do so in a state of haste when the power is out and they are in dire need for an emergency back-up electricity source. This can put you at a disadvantage of finding the right generator that is suitable for you. Always prepare and plan ahead so you aren’t left scurrying and end up settling on a less-than-ideal unit that lacks the desirable features you would want. Here are some very valuable features to consider in a generator:
Portable – Unless you have multiple large appliances in a large house you wish to run, a portable generator is usually all you really need. These are normally equipped on a housing frame with wheels that can easily be transported from one area to another or for easy storage. Portable generators offer much more versatility and value than a stationary unit.
Electric start – If you don’t want to deal with the hassle of a traditional pull-string generator be sure to look for one that offers an electric start feature. These will also power up much faster in harsh climates where the recoil starter method requires greater effort.
Automatic low-oil shut off – this is a feature that serves to protect the generator’s motor when the oil in the reservoir drop below the minimum required levels by shutting the unit down. This is a standard feature that most of your modern portable units come equipped with today. A generator is not cheap and it requires maintenance. If you want to avoid throwing your money away be sure to keep it well maintained and running adequately.
Fuel Gauge – This is a really valuable feature to ensure you don’t end up left in the dark as a result of running out of fuel. A gauge lets you know how much fuel is left in the tank so you aren’t left to guess how much time you have left before needing a fuel up.
Extra Power | Westinghouse WGen12000 | 12,000W Generator
OUTLETS : 2X GFCI 120V 5–20r Standard Household Receptacles, 1X 120V L5-30R Outlet, 1X Transfer Switch Ready 120V L14-30R, 1X RV Ready 120/240V 14–50r, and 2X 5V USB Ports;
All Outlets Have Rubber Covers.
What is CARB Compliant?
Generators are powered by fuel, which means it will emit exhaust to some extent and that can have a negative impact on the environment. Often times you will see a label CARB-compliant on fuel-powered tools. This stands for California Air Resources Board and indicates that the unit is specifically designed to meet the standards set forth by this board to reduce the output of damaging emissions.
In the state of California and many other states, it is required that large power tools such as generators meet the CARB-compliant rules and regulations. Most manufacturers offer a CARB-compliant model that is equivalent to their regular generators. If you live in a state that bans NON-CARB compliant motors you will need to ensure the model you opt for indicates that it meets those standards.
Generac 8000 Watt Generators
Now that we’ve covered some of the basics, let’s take a look at some recommended generators that will likely fit most needs. The first two are Generac 8000 watt generators within their XG 8000 series line.
✓ Introducing the Generac 8000 watt generator…The Generac 5846 is CARB-Compliant and the Generac 5747 IS NOT CARB-Compliant. If you live in California and/or you care about the environment then you’ll want to purchase the Generac 5846 model.
Generac XT8500EFI / 8000 Watt Generator
- Generac 459cc EFI engine delivers the right amount of power to get the best performance and efficiency out of your engine
- COsense Technology – STOPS, ALERTS, SAVES. Providing powerful protection against hazardous carbon monoxide.
- TruePower™ technology provides clean, smooth operation of sensitive electronics, tools and appliances
- Effortless Startup, automotive technology allows for easy and reliable starting.
- Built for Long-Term Storage, engineered to reduce bad gas problems during storage.
- Responsive Load Pickups, electronic engine control delivers reliable power.
- Low-oil shutdown automatically safeguards engine from damage
- Large-capacity fuel tank with incorporated fuel gauge provided durability and extended run times
- Electric start provides easy and reliable start-up
- Battery included; self-charging while in use
- ControlGuard™ provide added protection to the control panel
- Covered outlets provide added protection from the environment and rugged working conditions
- Hour meter tracks maintenance intervals
- 10” solid wheels make portability easy and efficient
- Fold-down locking handle allows for easy storage
The XT8000E/XT8500E is a premium portable generator for people who value quality. The XT8500E is the newest model and it includes an advanced carbon monoxide monitoring system. In a nutshell, when CO levels reach high levels the system will automatically shut down the generator to prevent anybody nearby from being poisoned.
The other feature that makes this a standout generator is the Electronic Fuel Injection which allows it to run smoothly at any elevation, no matter what the temperature is. You can bet you’ll get consistent results no matter where you run it. This makes for an excellent construction site generator with GFCI 20A outlets complete with protective outlet covers to keep out the dust, rain and other elements.
It has a low THD of <5% making it a safe source of power for your sensitive tools, electrical devices such as laptop, phone and anything else that requires outside power. This has been a solid generator in terms of reliability and durability. It’s more expensive than most homeowner generators because of the advanced features it comes with. EFI is a fairly expensive feature and brings the price up a few hundred dollars.
In the future you’ll see all gas generator shipping with electronic fuel injection because this feature automatically produces far less carbon monoxide emissions; up to around 70% less. There are legal proceedings happening right now to make it a legal requirement for all gas generators to be built with EFI. In order to prevent people dying from CO poisoning, the combination of EFI and CO monitoring can guarantee that no other human ever dies again from CO poisoning.
This portable 8,000-watt generator exceeds expectations when it comes to quality. It is on the higher end of the price range, but there is a lot of value here. It is more than capable of powering up the essentials and has an average run time of over 8 hours when operating at half load. It is equipped with electric start and battery included. (Be aware that generators with electric start require a battery to utilize this feature and not all models include the battery with the unit.) All Generac 8000 watt generators labeled as XP8000E feature electric start. Other notable features include:
This generator provides covered outlets to protect them from environmental factors as well as circuit breakers, a feature not found on many models. Excluding the battery charger outlet, there are 5 electrical outlets in total with a 120/240v 30 amp Twist Lock outlet. It has a very user-friendly console with engine controls that are convenient for a simple start up. In terms of durability, this one is pretty hard to beat with a solid frame that is actually thicker in diameter compared to other units by 25% to withstand rugged conditions like construction sites.
Generac 5846 XG8000E | 8000 Watt Generator
This portable generator is basically the equivalent to the 5747 model but CARB-compliant (the 5747 is NON-CARB compliant, so it is not permitted in the state of California). This model is equipped with the standard features that most generators these days contain including:
- Steel tube cradle with no-flat-tire wheel kit
- Hour meter with maintenance resets
- Variety of outlets (with covers for additional protection)
What sets this generator apart from the previous model, aside from the CARB-compliance, is the noise level it puts out. This powerful generator is relatively quiet in comparison to others in its class. A 9-gallon capacity fuel tank provides long lasting run-time when operating at 50% to sufficiently power a mid-sized RV or your essential appliances in the event of an emergency.
As standard in the models within the XP series, this Generac 8000 watt generator delivers the same level of quality with features intended to prolong the engine life such as the spin on pressurized oil lubrication system, automatic shut-off feature when the oil level gets too low and the rugged durability of the frame. Additionally, the handle makes transporting the portable unit more convenient and folds down compactly for storing.
Documents for the Generac 5846:
Learn more about CARB-Compliance from the California Air Resources Board (CARB).
Briggs & Stratton 30664 | 8000 Watt Generator
- Long 9 Hour Run Time (at 50% Load)
- Running Watts: 8000 / Surge Watts: 10000
- Metal 7 gallon fuel tank for increased durability and less refueling.
- Power Surge energy produces a short surge of power needed to start large motor-driven appliances and tools simultaneously.
- Key Electric Start & Remote Choke
- Quick and easy starting right from the control panel.
- Easy, All-Terrain Maneuverability : 12” Never Go Flat wheels and a fold-up handle.
- Multi-Featured Control Panel With Circuit Breaker Protection.
- Includes four GFCI 120 V household outlets and one 120/240V 30A locking outlet to power more essentials in your home, plus rubber outlet covers protect against the elements.
- Briggs & Stratton Engine (420cc). Excellent fuel efficiency.
This is another very powerful generator with 8,000 running watts and a power surge alternator to deliver power where you need it to run larger appliances. This one is designed with better fuel efficiency. The 7.5 gallon fuel tank can provide up to 9 hours of run-time on a full tank at 50% load to deliver longer-lasting use before needing to be refueled. There’s also a fuel gauge located on top of the unit to monitor the gas level. Additional features in this model include:
- Key Electric Start and remote choke.
- Super Lo-tone muffler.
- Hour meter to monitor run-time.
An added feature on this unit for the purpose of preserving the integrity of quality is the rubber outlet covers that are included which prevent outlet corrosion from occurring. The outlets are protected with circuit breakers to protect both your appliances and the generator from overload. For convenient mobility, the wheel kit included with this unit features 12-inch Never-go-flat wheels that can handle any terrain. It is also backed by a 3-year limited warranty from the manufacturer.
As for the noise level, it’s about average as far as generators go. It has been noted that it is louder than some brands (Honda) but, relatively quieter in comparison to the Generac 8000 watt generator models. It is a generator — if it’s not making some level of noise then it isn’t working. What more can I say?
DuroMax XP10000E | 10,000 Watt Generator
- Duromax 16 HP 4 stroke air cooled engine
- Starting Watts: 10,000 watts / Running Watts : 8,000 watts
- Powerful 420cc gas engine.
- Low oil shutoff protects engine.
- Quiet muffler reduces engine noise.
- Fuel tank capacity: 8.3 Gallons.
- Quiet exhaust with built-in spark arrestor.
- Cast iron sleeve and steel bearings for increased durability.
- 12-Volt battery for electric starter.
- Large 10.5” never flat tires.
- EPA Approved.
- Automatic Low Oil Shut Off.
View or download the MANUAL for the DuroMax XP10000E.
With larger generators comes a greater consumption for fuel, but this 8,000 watt generator offers the best in fuel efficiency among the models mentioned here. It is equipped with an 8.3 gallon fuel tank which can run for up to 10 hours continuously. It also features electric start with the 12V battery included. Much like the other featured models, this one also includes 5 outlets in total including a 120/240v 30A twist-lock. Additional features included with this unit:
- Noise-reduction muffler
- Automatic voltage regulation
- Spark arrestor
- Low oil shutdown
- Fuel gauge
This powerhorse offers a really good deal for the power capability and fuel efficiency compared to other models of similar power. An important note is that it is EPA-approved but not CARB-compliant. There is a CARB-compliant version that is equivalent to this one in power (XP10000E-CA) for residents of California.
8.3 Gallon Gas Tank / EPA Approved.
Generator Safety Tips
A generator is a very useful machine that can be quite helpful in emergency situations, but safety should always be a priority when it operating one. Keep the following safety tips in mind when using a generator of any type (including CARB-compliant models).
- Keep portable generators at least 15-feet away from your home, doors and windows and only operate outdoors.
- Add a fuel stabilizer to the gas when it is not in use.
- Follow the manufacturer’s maintenance schedule to keep your unit properly maintained
- Use an extension cord ONLY if it is of grounded quality and rated for the use intended. (Extension cords are not recommended for use with generators, but if you must run one be sure it is grounded)
- Always uncoil cords and lay flat to reduce fire hazard as coiled up cords can become very hot.
- Install a Power Transfer Switch (by a professional) or an interlock device (cheaper DIY alternative) to connect the generator to your home for backup power.
- Keep your generator protected from exposure to rain and snow.
- Keep your generator properly secured from children.
- Use in enclosed places like a closed garage or indoors. Generators emit carbon monoxide which can build up and become very dangerous and potentially fatal. Even those that meet CARB standards still emit fumes to a degree. Install a battery-powered carbon monoxide detector nearby the area where the generator will be running.
- Operate near materials that are flammable or combustible.
- Plug a generator directly to your home outlet. This can cause serious damage to your appliances and the generator as well as put utility workers at risk for injury.
- Operate the generator in wet conditions. These machines produce very powerful voltage which doesn’t mix well with water.
Believe it or not, the user manuals are there for a reason – to ensure safety and help extend the life of your model with proper care and maintenance guidelines – so READ IT!