One of the wisest investments you can make around your home is to invest in one of the best whole house generators. A well built, long-term machine can provide you with consistent and stable power supply for extended periods. In the event of a power outage, you can turn to one of these to keep your home or business running.
But because different machines have different capabilities, it is even more important to go for a system that meets your exact needs and offers good value for money. Below is a comparison of ten popular generators model with a final verdict on which one of them is capable of providing efficiency and reliability.
Why You Need A Whole House Generator
Power blackouts are sometimes unpredictable. They happen when you least expect and you may have to compromise on your quality of life or schedule if such an occurrence is reported in your neighborhood. That’s where a whole house generator comes in handy.
It provides you with much-needed power so that you can complete all your important tasks before powermen can restore their systems. People buy these generators in order to guarantee seamless operation either at home or at work.
Generac 6244 20K Watts Standby Generator
Generac 6244 beats other whole-house generators because of its hands-free operation. It requires no fuel, you only need to hook it up to your natural gas source or any liquid propane source. And best of all, you never have to start it manually when the power goes off.
- Generac has a remarkable level of smoothness which is achieved through its patented True Power Technology which means you can continue using your gadgets without worry
- Given its massive size, it runs rather quietly and can be kept 5 feet away from the house
- Accommodates 200Amp automatic transfer switch to protect the entire premises
- The machine is CARB compliant and it comes with a 5-year limited warranty cover
- Runs efficiently on natural gas and liquid propane
- Has an automatic switch-on system
- Has an automatic transfer switch included
- Incidences of it refusing to start, though not common, have been reported
Generac 6244 20,000 Watt Standby Generator
Kohler 20RESAL-SA7 20,000 Watt (Air Cooled) Generator
This standby generator is designed to automatically kick in whenever there is a blackout promising to restore your power is as little as 10 seconds. Kohler 20RESAL-SA7 boasts a 5-year limited warranty or an alternative of 2,000-hour warranty whichever elapses first.
- Powerful and reliable motor powered with hydraulic valve filters and PowerBoost technology which accommodates larger electrical loads.
- Has low distortion (THD), a feature that is needed to protect your sensitive electronics at home.
- It operates quietly, all thanks to its advanced silencer technology which reduces sound levels and provides quiet operation at 69 dB(A) from 7 Meters
- Has a built-in Ethernet and there is no additional hardware needed to make it safe for changing physical conditions. In addition, it has a pack of LED lights which allow you to view ATS status.
- Meets EPA regulations for phase 2 small off-road engines and CA 2011 requirements.
- Relatively quiet and friendly for most neighborhoods
- Easy to install, and it has two holes in front and back for easier carrying
- Quite reliable for long-term usage
- Has a relatively weak throttle
Generac CorePower 5837 7Kw Generator
The Generac CorePower 5837 is largely considered an entry level whole house generator because of its size and reasonable price. Like other 20Kw generators, it has an air-cooled engine that has been designed to ensure reliability and long-life. CorePower 5837 comes with a ready to work 50amp transfer switch and an empowered circuit load center.
Other features include:
- It is 10dB quieter than a standard generator
- Has easy to remove sides that make it extremely easy to install
- It is built with a weather protective composite cover that encloses it allowing it to withstand harsh weather conditions.
- Comes with an automatic transfer switch, a timed trickle battery charger and revolving field alternator design.
- Intelligently detects the power outage and automatically starts in about 10 seconds (it doesn’t start unless there is total power blackout).
- Reasonably priced and suitable for a first-time buyer (small scale)
- Given its specs, it is fair to say it is amazingly powerful
- It is easy to install
- It’s lightweight and may not be reliable for intensive whole house usage
Generac 5837 CorePower generator
Briggs & Stratton 40346 20000-Watt Home Generator
This whole house generator has the reputation of being reliable enough to provide a long-term power solution while still being flexible enough to meet the essential needs of a homeowner. Briggs & Stratton 40346 is capable of supplying 20,000 watts which are managed through a 200 amp automatic transfer switch – this is enough power to power up to two air conditioners among other devices.
- Fast response to the power outage, Briggs & Stratton responds in seconds and provides stable power essentially protecting electronics from power surges.
- Has a transfer switch which offers flexible usage making the machine ideal for both indoor and outdoor usage – that is in addition to weather resistant cover.
- Meets stringent NFPA standards, in fact, you can use it in as close as 7 meters from your home.
- Has a 16-unit circuit control center inclusive of circuit breakers entirely designed to fit within your yard
- Backed by a 4-year warranty cover
- Automatically restores power after blackout
- Ideal for large homes
- Powered by a commercial-grade vanguard engine
- The location of its oil fill is not convenient unless you have an appropriate funnel
Generac 5873 Guardian Series Generator
It is cheaper than other machines that have similar specs without compromising on quality. In fact, the only disappointing thing about it is that its housing is not that strong and it may rust after several years of outdoor use.
Another (minor) drawback with the 5873 is that it tends to be louder than average when running at a higher than normal speed. But there are many other features worth looking at including:
- One of the best whole house generators it offers a convenient, hands-free operation with no fueling required, no extension cords or manual are required.
- It sustains a smooth flow of power thanks to its patented True Power Technology which makes it safer to use on sensitive electronics.
- Has an automatic transfer switch with 16 circuits that are well protected (indoor rated, NEMA 1).
- The whole house generator is CARB compliant and still powerful enough to sustain a rating of 17,000 watts.
- Low maintenance generator backed by 2-year warranty
- Provides reliable power back-up
- Easy to install even
- The outdoor housing may rust if left outside for more than 5 years
Generac Guardian Series 17KW Home Generator
Generac 5871 Guarding Series Power Generator
When the power goes out, Generac 5871 eliminates the hassle of dealing with a fuse box in the basement or going outside in the middle of a storm to start the generator. After all the required natural gas, LP, and electrical connection are completed, this machine is usually ready to run immediately.
No fueling, no manual operation, and no extension cords are required. But that’s just a tip of the iceberg. Here are more go to features of this product.
- Utilizes True Power Technology to provide safe and clean energy suitable for electronics with microchips
- Generac 5871 an ultra-quiet appeal, its noise levels are low and the machine is 33% quieter than other portable models of its caliber.
- Its housing is corrosion resistant mainly because it is made of galvanized steel which is known for its durable finish.
- It features 530cc OHVI Engine which is exclusive because of its high-performance promise and accommodative design.
- The 5871 generator meets CARB requirements and it requires a Group 26R 525 CCA, 12-volt battery to operate.
- Rugged and worry-free design
- Superior technology for quiet operation and durability
- Backed by 2-year warranty from Generac
- You have to buy the battery separately
Generac 6437 12 Circuit Compliant Generator
Generac 6437 may not be your common 20,000-watt machine but at 11,000 watts it works wonders. Not only is it automated for seamless operation once the power goes off, it is free of complicated push buttons and comes pre-wired for easy installation. To add onto that, its engine requires little or no maintenance.
In fact, the manufacturer’s recommended service date frequency is 200 hours of use or 2 years.
- Equipped with a fully-fledged outdoor connection lot of mounting pad, fuel line pigtail and installation guide.
- Weighing a friendly 407 pounds, this machine occupies 48-inch by 25-inch by 29-inch space hence leaving adequate yard space for other uses.
- In case you are worried about durability, you will be pleased to learn that this machine comes with a 2-year warranty.
- Another plus is that it uses True Power Technology which guarantees smooth operation and less than 5% harmonic distortion.
- Easy to install and perfectly built for outdoor environment
- Its exercise test only runs for 12 minutes, weekly, bi-weekly or once a month
- Backed by good customer support and warranty from the manufacturer
- Its oil hose needs to be handled with care and checked from time to time.
Generac 6438 Standby Generator With 11,00 Watt
Generac 6438 is the go-to machine when you need one of the evolved whole house generators on the market. It is powered by an 11,000-watt generator and reinforced by a 200 Amp transfer switch.
One feature worth looking forward to is an evolution controller that contains a dual-line, LCD display and built-in hour meter. You will also love the fact that this machine is digitally advanced, unlike others.
- Boasts mobile link wireless remote monitoring system
- Powered by True Power Technology which enhanced smooth operation and protects your electronics
- Its enclosure (or housing) is sturdy and finished with rhino coat offering superior protection even against 150 MPH wind.
- Third-party rated to NFPA standards and backed by 5 years limited warranty
- Technologically advanced
- Powerful enough to power a medium-sized home
- Extended warranty coverage
- May be difficult for a first-time user to operate
Gen-Tran R301060 Generator
If there is one thing Gen-Tran R301060 in known for, it is versatility. It has a reliable transfer whichis ideal for powering important appliances with a portable generator during power blackouts. The machine comes built with 10-16 household circuits and can be used with any generator of up to 7500 watts.
Further to that, this machine allows for easy plug-in connection and it is ideal for a wide variety of devices from well pump to refrigerator and water heaters.
- Weighing a light 22 pounds, this machine sits pretty in the dimensions of 4-inch by 18-inch by 18-inch.
- It is NEMA third-party rated and it comes with a weatherproof enclosure that is durable and easy to mount outdoors.
- It accommodates GFCI breakers and arc-fault breakers which may be required in some states and jurisdictions.
- Can be expanded to accommodate 16 circuits so you only upgrade instead of replacing it.
- Well built for outdoor use
- Versatile allowing for future upgrades
- Compliant with most industry leader’s guidelines
- Great value for money
- May not be ideal for large scale house power requirements
Briggs and Stratton 40400 Generator System
Briggs and Stratton 40400 is a market leader as far as whole house generators are concerned. It has a streamlined design that meets the power needs for a typical home setting at a friendlier cost per session. The machine is fully automatic as it detects utility power and automatically starts in a few seconds.
- Comes with a 12kW fully automated generator system with 200-Amp service entrance rated automatic transfer switch.
- Built with computer controlled load management power switching through Symphony II Transfer Switch (2×4-Ton AC) that allows one to expand the generators range by prioritizing powered circuits.
- Its enclosure is sleek, compact and capable of blending in an outdoor environment (Galvaneal steel). Besides that its streamlined design keeps it cool and capable of operating even in demanding times.
- Has a brushless alternator and it offers a smooth flow of power making it safe for use even with advanced electronics and computers.
- Rustproof protection for extended outdoor life
- 5 years limited warranty
- Streamlined design
- Difficult for a rookie to install
|Product Name||Image||Power||Overall Rating||Details|
|Generac 6244 20K Watts Standby Generator||20,000 Watt||10||Check price|
|Kohler 20RESAL-SA7(Air Cooled) Generator||20,000 Watt||8||Check price|
|Generac CorePower 5837 7Kw Generator||7,000 Watt||8||Check price|
|Briggs & Stratton 40346 Home Generator||20,000 Watt||8.5||Check price|
|Generac 5873 Guardian Series Generator||17,000 Watt||7.5||Check price|
|Generac 5871 Guarding Series Power Generator||10,000 Watt||7||Check price|
|Generac 6437 12 Circuit Compliant Generator||11,000 Watt||9||Check price|
|Generac 6438 Standby Generator With 11,00 Watt||11,000 Watt||8.5||Check price|
|Gen-Tran R301060 Generator||7,500 Watt||9||Check price|
|Briggs and Stratton 40400 Generator System||12,000 Watt||8.5||Check price|
What You Need To Know When Buying a Whole House Generator
Generators are generally rated by wattage. The higher the wattage, the more lights they can support and the more the appliances they can run in your house at once. Besides that, a good choice is one that automatically starts when the power goes off.
Moreover, there are some generator types that offer a push start button as an option to the age-old pull-start methodology. Most standby generators run on gasoline though some come built to run even on propane or natural gas – some can be converted.
Another important factor to consider is the smoothness of power emitted. Some manufacturers have invested in sophisticated technology that prevents power surges and protects your delicate equipment.
Of all the ten generators we have reviewed we have observed that there are some which are quite powerful yet noisy. Others are not as powerful but they offer incredible reliability.
Generac Core Power 5837 generator, for instance, leads the pack in quietness but it lags behind because of its weight and complicated installation.
Generac 5873 standby generator, on the other hand, is quite powerful but it lags behind because of a weak housing that is susceptible to rusting.
Generac 6437 is a great and powerful machine but it loses the top spot because of a weak oil hose that needs rechecking.
Generac 6438 tops the rungs with its advanced technology but misses out narrowly on the top spot because of smaller wattage and complicated operability.
The story goes on and on and if you observe keenly it is pretty easy to spot the winner – Generac 6244. This machine offers hands-free operation and can be powered by natural gas or liquid propane. It has a remarkable smoothness of power-flow and is CARB compliant. Above all, it provides a decent 20,000 watts which is enough to run all whole house operations.
Verdict: Generac 6244 is the overall winner.