Top 6 Best Generators for Travel Trailer 2019

Getting the best generator for travel trailer will make your camping trips more comfortable when there’s no electrical hook up available.

Here are the best generators for travel trailer you can buy in 2019:

  • Best Overall: Champion 3400-Watt
  • Ultra-Quiet: WEN 56200i
  • Most Fuel Efficient: Westinghouse WH2200iXLT
  • Best Dual Fuel: Champion 3800-Watt
  • Budget-Friendly: DuroStar DS4000S
  • Quietest: Rainier R4400

Best Overall: Champion 3400-Watt

Top Pick
Champion 3400-Watt
Champion 3400-Watt
9Outstanding
Pros
  • Dual fuel

  • User-friendly design

  • Powerful but relatively quieter than other counterparts in its field

Cons
  • Need to refuel more times

  • Pricey

First off, is the Champion 3400-watt with emphasis on duel fuel. This feature allows you to use either gasoline or propane to operate your machine.

For those who don’t know, propane is one of the cheapest and cleanest burning kind of fuel. I mean, if not using your generator regularly, you don’t need to remove the oil like when with gasoline.

The whole construction of this unit is also user-friendly, especially the multiple outlets that you can charge different electronic appliances at once.

At the meantime, a quick Touch Panel will let you access all the controls in one convenient area while the push-button electric start ensures a quick start in the winter.

While running at 3100 watts – also the most powerful out of three inverter options in this list, its noise level is incredibly low, only 59 dBA.

Champion 3400-Watt Specifications

Fuel Capacity (gal)

1.6

Run Time (25% load)

Propane: 14.5 hours

Gas: 7.5 hours

Item Weight (lb.)

95.7

AC Rated Output Running Watts

3100

AC Maximum Output Starting Watts

3400

Noise Level (dBA)

59

Highlight Features

Dual fuel, Electric Start with 3-Position Ignition Switch, clean power

Verdict

If you’re looking for a generator that meets all kinds of versatility and convenience, Champion 3400-watt is the best bet.

Ultra-Quiet: WEN 56200i

WEN 56200i
WEN 56200i
9Outstanding
Pros
  • To most silent generator in this list

  • It’s guaranteed in producing safe power that sensitive electronics can use

  • Can adjust the fuel consumption to be more fuel efficient

  • Equipped with USDA-approved spark arrestor to ensure safety when using in the forest.

Cons
  • Not really powerful, only suitable to charge some vital appliances

  • Need regular maintenance

With a modest noise level of 51 dBA at quarter load, WEN 56200i is one of the quietest generators on the market.

To give you an idea, according to the US Department of Health and Human Services, a regular conversation ranges roughly 50 dBA. If you place this unit 22 feet away from your travel trailer, it will be really pleasant.

Another big bonus of WEN 56200i is it generates really clean power with under 0.3% of total harmonic distortion at no load and also get the EPA III and CARB Compliant.

The manufacturer also equipped an Eco-Mode throttle to this unit, allowing it to adjust the fuel consumption to prevent unnecessary gasoline usage. Why running your generator on full capacity when the power need is only 500 watts, right?

WEN 56200i Specifications

Fuel Capacity (gal)

1

Run Time (50% Load)

6 hours

Item Weight (lb.)

48

AC Rated Output Running Watts

1600

AC Maximum Output Starting Watts

2000

Noise Level (dBA)

51

Highlight Features

EPA III and CARB-Compliant, clean power, Eco-Mode Throttle, Low-oil, and low-fuel automatic shutdown

Verdict

If you want your generator to go silent to avoid bothering your neighbors’ sleep, WEN 56200i is my recommendation for you.

Most Fuel Efficient: Westinghouse WH2200iXLT

Westinghouse WH2200iXLT
Westinghouse WH2200iXLT
9Outstanding
Pros
  • Lightweight, compact and portable

  • Have impressive long runtime (of 7.5 hours in 50% load) with efficiency mode

  • Can hook two generators together for higher power demands

Cons
  • No USB ports

  • Hard to start

Featuring a 1.3-gal fuel tank and at 25% load, it can continuously run within 13 hours before draining out of juice. That’s a rather impressive number compared to other counterparts in its field.

I think it’s mostly a big thank you to the built-in efficiency mode that helps optimize the power adjustment to save energy when there are fewer appliances plugged into the machine.

It’s an ideal choice for a long-distance camping trip, huh? But I know that you’re afraid of power output. Don’t fret!

Though it only operates at 2200 starting watts and 1800 running watts, the parallel capability feature lets you connect two WH2200iXLT units together to double the power capacity.

It’s also lightweight (just 43 lbs.) so in comparison of carrying two small generators and one giant model, obviously, the first choice is wiser. Does it make sense?

Westinghouse WH2200iXLT Specifications

Fuel Capacity (gal)

1.3

Run Time (25% Load)

13 hours

Item Weight (lb.)

43

AC Rated Output Running Watts

1800

AC Maximum Output Starting Watts

2200

Noise Level (dBA)

52

Highlight Features

13 Hours of Run Time on a 1.3 Gallon Gas Tank, Efficiency Mode, Parallel Capable

Verdict

Overall, as the best efficient-fuel option, Westinghouse WH2200iXLT is the best bet.

Best Dual Fuel: Champion 3800-Watt

Champion 3800-Watt
Champion 3800-Watt
9Outstanding
Pros
  • The most powerful conventional generator in this list

  • Equipped with safety features and user-friendly design

  • Portable

  • Relatively quiet compared to other counterparts in its field

Cons
  • Heavy and difficult to lift it up just by one person

  • Oil drain is poorly located

Like the previous sibling, Champion 3800-watt highlights the duel fuel function that delivers variable fuel type choices. Either you can go for gasoline as a budget-friendly option or propane for clean burning.

It also keeps other strengths of general Champion generators like the Safety fuel selector switch, Touch start, Automatic Low Oil Shutdown, and Fuel Gauge.

But since this is a conventional model with leverage in the fuel tank (3.4 gallons), the runtime now is improved up to 9 hours on a full load.

At the meantime, with a 212cc OHV 4 Stroke Rainier engine, the power capacity is increased to 3800 running watts and 4750 starting watts, which ensures more electricity for more appliances.

Compared to other counterparts, this unit is unbeatable. But such that phenomenal performance leads to two minus weaknesses: heavier weight (105 lbs.) and louder noise (68 dBA).

Champion 3800-Watt Specifications

Fuel Capacity (gal)

3.4

Run Time (25% Load)

Propane: 14.5 hours

Gas: 7.5 hours

Item Weight (lb.)

105

AC Rated Output Running Watts

3800

AC Maximum Output Starting Watts

4750

Noise Level (dBA)

68

Highlight Features

Touch Start, Safety Fuel Selector Switch, portable – folding handle with never-flat tires, runs up to 9 hrs. on a full tank of gas, quiet.

Verdict

All-in-all, if your biggest concern when looking for a generator is on economical fuel consumption and powerful engine, this is good to go.

Budget-Friendly: DuroStar DS4000S

DuroStar DS4000S
DuroStar DS4000S
9Outstanding
Pros
  • Good price

  • Allow using in all 50 states

  • Superior durability and longevity

  • Relatively quiet

  • Generous run time at 50% load

Cons
  • Bulkier

  • No amp or watt meter

With a bigger fuel tank of 3.96 gallons, the DuroStart DS4000S delivers longer runtime – up to 12.3 hours when continuously operated.

Though not as powerful and variable in outlets as the Champion 3800-watt, this unit can provide enough energy for multiple jobs from heavy-duty power tools to high-voltage appliances.

It’s built with a DuroStar 7.0 Hp, air cooled OHV engine to generate 4000 starting watts and run stably at 3300 watts. There is also low-oil shutoff feature to ensure safety during usage for your camping trips.

What I really love about this unit is an additional voltmeter.

As you know, conventional generators can’t convert and invert the electricity to fit different voltage requirements in specific tools. That’s why this extra feature turns out to be useful that can help me measure the voltage output and control everything better.

DuroStar DS4000S Specifications

Fuel Capacity (gal)

3.96

Run Time (50% Load)

12.3

Item Weight (lb.)

102

AC Rated Output Running Watts

3300

AC Maximum Output Starting Watts

4000

Noise Level (dBA)

69

Highlight Features

Plenty of power, all metal construction, low oil shutdown, extended runtime

Verdict

Out of excellent performance in both power output and runtime, it’s amazing when the DuroStart DS4000S costs less than $280, making it ideal for anyone with tight budgets.

Quietest: Rainier R4400

Rainier R4400
Rainier R4400
9Outstanding
Pros
  • Versatile with multiple outlets, 2 grounding ports, and RV ready kit

  • Safety: Have low-oil and overload protection alarms as well as EPA and CARB compliant

  • User-friendly: electric start to make a quick start in cold weather and VFT display

  • The quietest conventional generator in this list

Cons
  • Not really fuel efficient

Despite the heaviest weight in this list, Rainier R4400 is the most convenient.

While providing multiple outlets to let multiple appliances ably charge at the same time, it also features VFT Display and two Grounding Ports.

I love that whenever in need of checking lifetime hours, frequency, or volts, just take a look at one area and I can easily track all of them. There is also an electric start, one 120V 30A (L5-30R), one 120V 30A (TT-30R), and one Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R) nearby.

With 4400 starting watts and 3600 running watts, it’s a worthy competitor of Champion 3800-watt above. One highlight is conversing to such powerful performance, the unit runs really silently – only 65 dBA.

Rainier R4400 Specifications

Fuel Capacity (gal)

4

Run Time (25% Load)

18

Item Weight (lb.)

111

AC Rated Output Running Watts

3600

AC Maximum Output Starting Watts

4400

Noise Level (dBA)

65

Highlight Features

EPA and CARB-Compliant, powered by 212cc OHV 4 Stroke Rainier engine, electric start, RV ready, Low Oil and Overload Protection Alarms

Verdict

To avoid disturbing other trailers in your campsites while ensuring enough power for your appliances, the Rainier R4400 is really worth considering.

How To Choose The Best Generators For Travel Trailer?

Type of generator & fuel

In other words, you should consider which one to choose: An inverter or a conventional generator?

Inverter generators

Conventional generators

How does it work?

Made by recent state-of-the-art magnets & advanced electronic circuitry

Generate electricity by powering a motor that’s attached to an alternator

Highlight feature

Can convert the current to DC voltage and then invert it back to AC voltage.

Runs at a constant speed to provide the needed electrical current

Pros

-Produce safer power (less than 3% total harmonic distortion)

-Smaller sizes

-Lighter and easier portability

-More efficient

-Quieter

-Can provide a huge amount of power (up to 50,000 watts)

-Cheaper

Cons

-Need to refill fuel more times than the conventional generators

-Expensive

-Bulkier and heavier

-Only for large electronic appliances

-Noisier

Best for

Sensitive appliances

Those people who require a huge amount of power for their devices

On tight budget

The fuel source is another must-consider. There are:

  • Diesel: It’s the most powerful kind of fuel that not only produces clean burning but also is safer than gasoline. But diesel is the costliest on the other hand.

  • Gasoline: It’s relatively affordable and powerful out of three. If you choose this kind of power source, take note to remove gasoline off your generator if not regularly used because it’s not clean burning.

  • Propane: The cheapest fuel source in this list while providing the cleanest burning to be the best eco-friendly option. However, it’s the least powerful and portable.

Power output

  • Since most modern travel trailers contain lots of luxuries that usually present at home, your generator should be capable of running all of them without draining fully its fuel supply.

  • Estimating accurately the specific amount of power for your recreational vehicle turns out to be a must before purchasing a generator. Neither too little nor too much will have its consequence.

  • I advise making a list of the electronics, including their starting wattages and running wattages. Then, add the highest start-up requirement with the start-up wattage of the electronics to calculate the surge capacity you need in a generator.

  • If you intend to use it permanently, look for a model that features parallel capabilities to let you switch to another generator when the power needs are up.

Noise level

  • A noisy generator might spoil you and your neighbors’ outdoor experience, which is the reason I suggest choosing a quiet one.

  • But take note that the more silent the generator, the less powerful it is.

  • Inverter generators are the most favorite choice for people who want to get a silent night sleep since thanks to the advanced technologies to get a perfect compromise of power and noise level.

  • Usually, their noise range is only within 50-60 dBA at a 23-feet distance, which is best for campsites.

  • But if your travel trailer requires a huge amount of power, I’ve got two options for this case: Choose a conventional generator that’s equipped with mufflers or an inverter with parallel capability.

Maneuverability

  • Unlike a generator for home use, the one for travel trailers requires more on maneuverability since you have to move it here and there during your trips.

  • Choosing a lightweight and compact model is highly recommended, but if yours is heavy, at least it should have some handles that you can lift it up easily and share the heft with others while carrying it around.

  • Or, finding ones with wheel attachment is convenient for one person to move their generator on their own.

Which Brands Make The Best Generators For Travel Trailer?

Champion

Started making power equipment since 2003, that’s the reason Champion is now really a champion in the generator world. Their lines are vast in designs, sizes, power output, and budgets while the customer service is really top-rated.

Wen

Wen’s generators aren’t the most powerful models on the market, but the produced energy from their products are always guaranteed to be clean and safe. The real strength lies in incredible silence level when running, making Wen’s generators are ideal for good night sleeps.

Westinghouse

Westinghouse is a well-known brand specialized in generators and pressure washers with an emphasis on long-standing engineering history since 1865. Up to now, there are 20 different lines of generators and their general highlights are a powerful engine and especially, fuel efficiency.

DuroStar

DuroStar has joined the list of highest-quality generators so far but what really gains their reputation is the price – very affordable. That’s why any beginners who are looking for an entry-level model for their trailer, this is always the first choice.

Rainier

Rainier might sound unfamiliar to some people since it’s a newcomer in this industry however, the amazing silence of their products is soon well-loved by worldwide users. While featuring powerful engine and durable construction, its price is kept low to fit many people’s budget.

FAQs

Do you need a generator for a travel trailer?

Yes, you do. Since battery can’t always be relied upon as a reliable power source, it’s essential to have a generator in your travel trailer.

How much gas does travel trailer generator use?

It depends on two things:

  • Your usage

  • Fuel type

A 5000-watt gasoline-operated generator consumes 1 gallon of fuel per hour while one that’s run by propane will be around 1 to 1.5 gallons. Diesel is the most fuel effective since it just takes 0.75 gallons.

How many watts does a travel trailer use?

To answer this question, look at the load you intend to power via the travel trailer at the same time. Note the name, their starting watts, and running watts. Then, add all the starting watts group to know how much surge watts your trailer needs.

Is inverter better than a traditional generator?

An inverter generator is just better than a traditional model in some aspects, such as compactness, lightness, silence, and safety to sensitive electronics.

In terms of price range and power capacity, the traditional generators win.

Can my generator get wet?

No, it can’t. Since water and electricity are their enemies, it’d better not run your generator in a wet or rainy environment. To avoid bad cases happened, you should use a GFCI outlet that will auto-shut off when your machine is wet.

Can you run a generator overnight?

Literally, you can. But I advise you not to ensure safety and your neighbors will also thank you for that choice as well.

Is it bad to run a generator without load?

Yes, it is. The most serious consequence of running a generator without load is wet stacking. When the fuel isn’t burnt off entirely, the excess amount will accumulate on the exhaust stack and turbo, leading to irreversible damage. It hurts your bank!

Conclusion

In your search for the best generator for a travel trailer, ensure to go for a model that comes with the most optimal compromise of your budget, enough power capacity, and size. I hope that this ultimate buying guide was helpful to you. Thanks for reading!

Top 6 Best Generators for Travel Trailer 2019
5 (100%) 1 vote[s]

Leave a Comment

shares