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Best generators in Consumer Reports new tests

Portable generators can help in a storm
Posted at 6:32 PM, Nov 15, 2018

Losing power is always annoying, but it can also be costly and dangerous during a winter ice storm.

Think about having to throw away spoiled food or cleaning up after frozen pipes burst.  

When Maureen Ball’s neighborhood lost power in a storm, she gave her husband an ultimatum. "You know I’ve just been without heat and electricity for four days, and I said ‘I want this generator and I want it now,'" she said.

So our partners at Consumer Reports Magazine have just released a list of top rated generators, according to their tests.

Generator options

If you just want to power your refrigerator, some lights and a phone charger or laptop, consider the lightest type of generator that delivers up to 2,000 watts. 

A midsize model will give you up to 3500 watts, so you can also power a window air conditioner, or 1000-watt space heater, and run either your coffee maker, washing machine or hair dryer. 

If your needs include running a large sump pump, a larger portable generator providing up to 7,500 watts can handle all this plus a gas furnace.  Electricians can add a furnace plug, so your house stays warm in a winter outage.

And if you want whole-house power, a permanently-installed standby generator that provides up to 20,000 watts can make you forget there’s a storm outside. 

Consumer Reports' top rated portable generators:

  • YAMAHA EF2000isV2 - 1600 watts - $900
  • PREDATOR 3500 - 3,000 watts - $770

Top rated whole-house generators:

  • GENERAC RS7000E - 7,000 watts - $1,000
  • CHAMPION - 100179 - $2,800

As always, don't waste your money.


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