Top 7 Best 5000-Watt Generators (2024 Review)

If you are looking for a generator to power your house during a power outage, you have come to the right place!

In this guide, you will learn:

  • How to choose the generator right for you
  • Our #1 generator pick
  • Risks of using generators 
  • And more...
best 5000 watt generators

Generators are great additions for any homeowner to have at the ready when the power goes out.  

You never know how long the power is going to be out during an outage.  It could be hours, or it could be days! However, if you have a generator ready you don't have to be concerned about how you are going to keep your food from spoiling in the refrigerator or freezer.

Below is our list of the top 5kW generators on the market. Keep reading to learn about the best 5000-Watt generators and frequently asked questions. Let's get started!

Honda EM5000SX with CO-MINDER
  • 5,000 Running Watts
  • Quiet at less than 63-db
  • Strong 1-piece welded frame
  • 5,000 Running Watts
  • Quiet at less than 63-db
  • Strong 1-piece welded frame
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Gen-Max GM5500i Inverter Generator EPA Compliant
  • 5,000 Running Watts
  • Electric start
  • Quiet at less than 60-db
  • 5,000 Running Watts
  • Electric start
  • Quiet at less than 60-db
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DuroMax XP5500 EH with Electric Start and Duel Fuel
  • 4,500 Running Watts
  • Dual start with electric or recoil
  • Uses gas or diesel
  • 4,500 Running Watts
  • Dual start with electric or recoil
  • Uses gas or diesel
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Generac 6864 5000 Watt Diesel Powered
  • 5,000 Running Watts
  • Durable welded steel frame
  • Diesel-powered and fuel efficient
  • 5,000 Running Watts
  • Durable welded steel frame
  • Diesel-powered and fuel efficient
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Westinghouse WGen 5500 S with Electric Start
  • 5,300 Running Watts
  • Lightweight with wheels
  • Electric start
  • 5,300 Running Watts
  • Lightweight with wheels
  • Electric start
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Champion 100231 with Dual Fuel and Wheel Kit
  • 5,500 Running Watts
  • Uses gas or propane
  • Electric start
  • 5,500 Running Watts
  • Uses gas or propane
  • Electric start
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Pulsar 5250W with Wheel Kit
  • 5,250 Running Watts
  • Long runtime
  • Includes ‘never flat’ wheels
  • 5,250 Running Watts
  • Long runtime
  • Includes ‘never flat’ wheels
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Our Overall #1 Rated Pick

Our overall top pick for the best generator goes to the Honda EM5000SX with CO-MINDER because the advance carbon monoxide detection on it, along with full GFCI protection! Everyone wants to keep their family safe! 

Even if you have larger appliances that need a little extra help getting started, this generator puts out 7000-watts for the first 10 seconds!

The creature features on this help drive this into the #1 pick.  The open frame makes it easy to lift when needed! Even better are the folding handles and the never flat wheels making it easy to move it around to where it needs to go! 

It is the hands-down best 5kW generator on the market that will keep your household going even when the power goes out!

Top 7 Best 5kW Generators Reviewed

If you want to have the best generator, you can't beat the Honda EM5000SX!

  • Running Watts: 5kW
  • Runtime: 10.5 hours @50% load
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline 
  • Weight: 210 lbs

This generator has all the bells and whistles to make it OSHA worksite compliant! 

The EM5000SX provides full GFCI power to prevent any accidental electrical shocks and the outlets all have a cover on them to prevent dirt and moisture from getting in and creating issues.  

Circuits are protected by electronic circuit breakers to help prevent the generator from being overloaded. Especially since there are two 20A GFCI 120 V duplex outlets, one 30A 120V locking outlet, and one 30 A 120/240V locking outlet available to provide power! 

The engine is protected by the trademarked Honda Oil Alert that will shut the engine down if it detects low oil.  It also comes with iAVR technology which helps prevent fluctuations in voltages that could ruin appliances plugged into it. 

The CO-MINDER technology can give you peace of mind that your family is safe from carbon monoxide build up.

  • 3 Year Warranty 
  • Runs between 63- and 63 db (A) making it a quiet unit
  • One-piece welded frame with reinforced standing legs
  • Power selector switch for more flexibility in power usage
  • Provides and initial 7000W to get equipment running
  • Expensive
  • Heavy 
  • Only recoil start
  • No DC outlet

Our overall top pick for the safest and quietest generator is the Gen - Max GM5500i! 

  • Running Watts: 5kW
  • Runtime: 8.5 Hours @ 50% Load
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline
  • Weight: 127.5 lbs

The GM5500i has the most safety features of all the generators we have reviewed. 

This generator has a low oil alarm, an overload alarm, a carbon monoxide alarm, and a fault alarm.  It also has outlet covers to protect them from the weather when not is use!  It is also EPA certified.

This little suitcase design makes it easy to store with the built-in wheels and telescoping handle.  

It provides you with four 20A 120 V GFCI protected outlets, a 30A 120/240 V twist lock outlets, two USB charging ports, and a ground nut. 

There is a digital display that provides you with easy-to-read voltage, wattage, frequency, runtime and fuel supply readings.

  • Electric Start 
  • Eco switch to conserve energy and maximize fuel efficiency 
  • Easy to Cold Start
  • Quiet running at only 60 db
  • Expensive
  • Only one 30A outlet

The DuroMax comes in at number one for being the best affordable generator!

  • Running Watts: 4500 W
  • Fuel Tank Size: 3.9 Gal
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline or Propane
  • Weight: 136 lbs

The DuroMax XP5500 is a great budget friendly generator that can get you through a power outage. 

The option to run propane or gasoline gives you options to keep the power on when you might be struggling to find one or the other fuel source.  Using propane keeps emissions to a minimum. 

While running you will be able to see what voltage you are running at using the analog voltage meter built right into the controls display.  

The all-metal construction, no flat tires, and foldable handle makes portability easy and better to store. 

  • Can be fueled by gas or diesel
  • Electric or recoil start 
  • Low oil sensor 
  •  Only two 20A 120 V outlets

The best diesel-powered generator goes to the Generac 6864!

  • Running Watts: 5k Watts
  • Runtime: 32.4 hours @ 50% load
  • Fuel Type: Diesel
  • Weight: 254 lbs 

The Generac is one to consider with a longer runtime and less general maintenance.

While this generator maybe heavy it will provide you with all the power you need.  Available for use are two 20A GFCI protected 120 V duplex receptacles, a 30A 120V twist lock receptacle, a 30A 120/240 V twist lock receptacle, and a voltage selector switch. 

With the True Power technology, it is able to produce electricity with less than 5% harmonic distortion. 

There is also a digital hour meter so that you can easily track when maintenance is due. 

  • More fuel efficient 
  • Durable 1-1/4 welded steel frame
  • Long runtime
  • Less general maintenance
  • Doesn't come with portability kit
  • High upfront cost 

Coming in #1 for being the best lightweight generator is the Westinghouse WGen. 

  • Running Watts: 5300 W
  • Runtime: 18 hour @ 25% load 
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline
  • Weight: 131.4 lbs

With only being 131 lbs, rolling around on never flat wheels with a fold down handle, getting power where you need it is a piece of cake. 

The WGen 5500 S provides you with a selector switch to select between 120 and 240 Volts.  It has a 30A 120/240 volt twist lock plug, TT-30R 30A 120 plug, and one 20A 120V duplex receptacle all with covers to protect from the environment.


  • Electric start with manual choke
  • RV and Transfer Switch ready
  • Included is an oil bottle, oil funnel, and a spark plug wrench
  • Less outlets than others

The Champion 100231 is the champion for the best dual fuel generators

  • Running Watts: 5500 W 
  • Runtime: 9 hour - gas 6.5 hour - propane
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline or propane
  • Weight: 162.5 Lbs

Right out of the box this generator is ready to be used with gasoline or propane. Switching between the two is as easy as flipping a switch! 

It comes equipped with a gauge that helps keep track of voltage, hertz, and runtime hours making it easy to keep on top of the maintenance. 

There are two 20A GFCI protected duplex receptacles and a 30A 120/240V twist lock receptacle available to power what you need to! 

  • Electric start - battery included
  • LPG propane hose kit, wheel kit, oil funnel included
  • Easy cold start 
  • Noisy
  • On/Off Switch doesn't work when using propane

The Pulsar PG5250B is our top pick for longest runtime on one tank of fuel. 

  • Peak Watts: 5250 W 
  • Runtime: 12 hours
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline
  • Weight: 115lbs

Having a 4-gallon fuel tank makes it easy to fuel up and not have to worry about making it through the night. 

The low oil indicator and 3-in-1 digital meter make it easy to monitor fluid levels, outputs, and the needed maintenance on the electric generator

This generator comes ready to work with a 120/240 twist lock receptacle, and a 12VDC terminal! 

  • Long Runtime
  • Never flat wheels and folding handles for moving
  • Reliable
  • 72 db running noise level
  • Uncovered Outlets 

What Is A 5000-Watt Generator?

A 5000-watt generator provides you with backup power when there is a power outage or provides power when camping.

Having a 5000-watt generator gives you the ability to run the heating/cooling system of your house, power appliances, and keep the lights on in your house.

5kW generators are typically suitable for small to medium sized houses as well as RVs. These portable generators will be able to run a couple large appliances and several smaller appliances at the same time.

A 5kW portable generator will typically last around 15-30-hours when running on gasoline. A propane-fueled generator will run a little less at 10 to 25-hours.

How Do Portable 5kW Generators Work?

Simply put, a portable generator takes mechanical power produced from a fuel-powered engine and converts it into electrical power. 

The engine of the generator turns on the alternator and produces electricity. The more powerful the engine, the more electricity it is capable of producing.

Read Also >> How To Hook Up A Generator Without A Transfer Switch?

What Are The Different Types of 5,000W Generators For Houses?

There are three different types of fuel that portable generators are powered by: gasoline, propane, and diesel.  Each has their advantages and disadvantages. 


Propane generators are well suited for use as residential back up power. 


  • No expiring shelf life so it won't go bad
  • Enclosed canister so it has no risk of spilling
  • Does not produce carbon monoxide
  • Many homeowners already have a canister so there wouldn't be another fuel canister laying around
  • Longer run time 
  • Quieter 
  • Little maintenance


  • Shorter life span
  • More expensive up-front cost
  • Can be difficult to find propane in some areas 
  • Must carry propane tank with the generator 


Diesel generators are good if you need constant power with an automatic transfer.


  • Reliable
  • Long lasting 
  • Highly efficient even with little load
  • Has zero radio frequency emissions
  • Less maintenance than gas powered equipment


  • Loud
  • More costly repairs and maintenance
  • Not clean energy fuel
  • Expensive 


Gasoline generators are the most common type of portable generator that is used for power outages or even just camping.


  • Lower up-front cost
  • Fuel readily available
  • Quieter than diesel generators
  • Cleaner energy than diesel 
  • Smaller Size 


  • Creates carbon monoxide
  • Degrades/evaporates over time
  • Flammable 
  • Requires regular maintenance


Generators come in so many sizes in terms of wattage.  Depending on how many watts of power you are looking to run determines the wattage generator you will need. As the wattage goes up so does the physical size of the unit.  


Depending on your application, portability of the generator can be important.

Some come already on wheels and have handles that make it very easy to move. This is a big plus as some of the generators can be very heavy.  

Others you have to purchase a portability kit separately and install the wheels and handles yourself. 

If you have a place the generator will always sit, portability is not that big of an issue.

Starting Capabilities

There are two ways a portable generator is able to be started: electric start or recoil start. Some have both, others only have one or the other so make sure to double check how the generator is able to be started.

Electric Start

Electric start is great if you are unable to pull a recoil.  With just the push of the button to start it, almost anyone is able to start the generator.  

A downside is that it requires a battery to start.  This can cause issues if the battery is dead, and you need to use the generator.  

Recoil Start

Recoil is reliable because it doesn't require a battery to start the generator. You just have to be able to be strong enough to pull the recoil. 

The downside is the compression on some generators can make it very difficult to pull.  This makes is hard for anyone without enough strength or limited mobility to be able to start the generator. 

Read Also >> What Are The Best Generators For Apartments?

best 5000 watt generator for rv

How To Pick The Best 5,000-Watt Electric Generator?

There are some key factors when picking a generator for your home. When the power goes out, how many appliances and lighting circuits are you going to want to try and run? This will decide the size of generator you will need.

The degree of portability is not to be forgotten; the weight of generators and whether they come with a portability kit installed already varies greatly between brands and power capacity.

Generator Capacity 

Generators are sized to the number of watts that you intend on drawing.  

To pick the best generator for your needs, get a list of everything you would like to run, and calculate what your highest amp draw will be.  You will not want a generator smaller than that calculation.

Most appliances will have their watt draw listed on the informational label that has the model number on it.  

If it doesn't have the number of watts listed but has the amperage and voltage listed, you multiply the number of amps times the voltage it runs at.

Safety Features 

Safety is important so there are a couple things you should look for when choosing a generator.  It is best to have one that has built-in safety features to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning or running with low oil.  

low oil gauge is a good addition to your generator because if it gets low on oil without you knowing it could cause catastrophic damage to your generator.  

A carbon monoxide monitor is a great safety feature as well.  The toxic emissions produced by gas and diesel engines can be deadly, so if you can get a generator that will shut down at the sign of carbon monoxide it can be a great feature to keep your family safe. 

voltage meter is very beneficial because it will show you what voltage the generator is putting out.  This can help protect your appliances by ensuring that they are receiving the proper voltage.

An hour meter is a good feature to have to help keep track of when maintenance is due according to the number of hours the generator has run.

Outlet covers are great additions to your generator especially when sitting out in the weather.  This helps prevent moisture from getting into the outlets while they are not in use creating problems.

Read Also >> How To Install A Ceiling Fan Where No Fixture Exists?

What Are The Risks of Using A 5kW Generator?

Anytime you use any kind of electrical equipment electrical shock or electrocution is a hazard.  You need to be familiar with how generators work and how to operate them before doing anything. 

Running the generator in a non-ventilated area can cause a buildup of carbon monoxide which is known as the silent killer. 

Overloading your generator can damage your generator or anything plugged into it.  It can also create the potential to cause a fire from the heat created from overloading.  

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is The Best 5000-Watt Inverter Generator? 

In our opinion, the best 5kW inverter generator is the Gen-Max GM5550i.  It is compact, quiet, and has an eco mode. 

What Can I Run On A 5000-Watt Generator?

A 5k watt generator is capable of running any household item, lights, or appliance as long as the load remains under 5000-watts.  

Is A 5000-Watt Generator Good?

A 5000-watt generator is capable of running the essentials during a power outage.  Be sure to size the generator properly to your needs. 

What Is The Highest Rated Generator? 

The best generator is the Honda EB5000 with Co-Minder technology.

Read Also >> What Size Wire For 200-Amp Panel Boxes?

Final Thoughts

Going without power is never fun, so it is a great idea to have a generator on hand that you can fire up during power outages.  

Every generator has its advantages and disadvantages, so you need to decide what is important for you to have on your unit.  Decide how much wattage you will require and find a generator that will fit your needs! 

I hope you enjoyed this Home Inspector Secrets guide!

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