10 Best RV & Camping Generators

10 Best Generators for RVs & Camping - Reviews & Buyers Guide

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Camping trips and travelling with an RV get a lot more convenient and comfortable when we have a reliable power source for all our electrical needs. However, this type of travel does limit our storage space and we also need to keep in mind the neighbors. In short, not every type of generator is suitable.

The best generators for RVs and camping are compact, not too heavy, reliable and run quietly. With these requirements, the options are quickly limited to inverter generators although, there are a few conventional portable generators that might be up to the task, as well.

Take a look at our top 10 picks for the best generators for RVs and camping or scroll further down for our buying guide to make sure you choose the right RV ready generator for you.

Table of Contents

Our Top Generator Picks

1. Westinghouse iGen4500 – Editor's Choice

Westinghouse iGen4500 Super Quiet Portable Inverter Generator 3700 Rated & 4500 Peak Watts, Gas Powered, Electric Start, RV Ready, CARB Compliant

Features

  • Type: Inverter
  • Running Watts: 3,700 watts
  • Surge Watts: 4,500 watts
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline
  • Tank Size: 3.4 gal
  • Start Type: Push-to-start
  • Runtime: 18 hrs @ 1/4 load
  • Noise Level: 52 dB
  • Weight: 98 lbs
  • Parallel Capable: Yes
  • EPA Certified: Yes
  • CARB Certified: Yes

The Westinghouse iGen4500 ranks as the number one generator on our best inverter generator list. Since inverter generators are the ideal choice for RVs an camping, this model also reigns supreme on our list of the best generators for RVs and camping.

This Westinghouse model is the best choice because it runs very quietly, is highly portable thanks to its rear wheels and telescopic handle and delivers plenty of power. In short, it is the best value inverter generator that you can find online today.

Pros

  • Compact & portable design
  • Electric start
  • Very quiet compared to others in class
  • LED data center
  • Easy to maintain

Cons

  • Heavy for camping

2. Champion 3400-Watt Inverter Generator – Runner Up

Champion 3400-Watt Dual Fuel RV Ready Portable Inverter Generator with Electric Start

Features

  • Type: Dual Fuel Inverter
  • Running Watts: 3,100 watts (gas), 2,790 watts (propane)
  • Surge Watts: 3,400 watts (gas), 3,060 watts (propane)
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline / Propane
  • Tank Size: 1.6 gal
  • Start Type: Electric
  • Runtime: 7.5 hrs (gas) or 14.5 hrs (propane) @ 1/2 load
  • Noise Level: 59 dB
  • Weight: 95.7 lbs
  • Parallel Capable: Yes
  • EPA Certified: Yes
  • CARB Certified: Yes

A dual fuel generator is not common but a dual fuel inverter generator is even more rare. Champion Power Equipment being the innovators that they are, are setting the example for their competitors with this 3400-watt model.

It has plenty of power to run all the electrical appliances in an RV while remaining portable and compact. It has a better fuel economy on propane so we recommend connecting it to a 20 pound propane tank. This also lowers the noise level and pollutes less.

Pros

  • Dual fuel
  • Very portable design
  • Large control panel
  • Economy mode

Cons

  • Fuel economy when using gas could be better

3. Champion Dual Fuel RV Ready 3800-Watt – Best Conventional Portable

Champion 3800-Watt Dual Fuel RV Ready Portable Generator with Electric Start

Features

  • Type: Dual fuel portable
  • Running Watts: 3,800 watts (gas), 3,420 (propane)
  • Surge Watts: 4,750 (gas), 4,275 (propane)
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline / propane
  • Tank Size: 3.4 gal
  • Start Type: Electric
  • Runtime: 9 hrs (gas) ir 10.5 hrs (propane) @ 1/2 load
  • Noise Level: 68 dB
  • Weight: 119 lbs
  • Parallel Capable: Yes
  • EPA Certified: Yes
  • CARB Certified: Yes

Need a more powerful generator for your RV and have the space to accommodate it? Then, go ahead and order the Champion 3800-watt dual fuel generator which has an impressive 4750 watts of peak power.

Besides the power, we appreciate how fuel efficient this unit is on both gasoline and propane. This is a great affordable solution for when you want more power but don’t want to spend the money on two parallel running inverter generators.

Pros

  • Affordable compared to other models in class
  • Good power output
  • Dual fuel
  • Good fuel economy

Cons

  • Noisier than others in class

4. Duromax XP4850EH Dual Fuel Portable Generator – Most Powerful

DuroMax XP4850EH Dual Fuel Portable Generator - 4850 Watt Gas or Propane Powered-Electric Start- Camping & RV Ready, 50 State Approved

Features

  • Type: Dual fuel portable
  • Running Watts: 3,850 watts (gas), 3,658 watts (propane)
  • Surge Watts: 4,850 watts (gas), 4,608 watts (propane)
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline / propane
  • Tank Size: 3.9 gal
  • Start Type: Electric
  • Runtime: 10.42 hrs (gas) or 8.92 hrs (propane) @ 1/2 load
  • Noise Level: 69 dB
  • Weight: 130 lbs
  • Parallel Capable: No
  • EPA Certified: Yes
  • CARB Certified: Yes

If you have a well outfitted RV with all the same creature comforts that we have in our homes then you need to max out on the power. The Duromax XP4850EH is the ideal choice – it is a fuel-efficient workhorse with the extra flexibility of a dual fuel engine.

This unit comes RV ready so installation should be a breeze. It is also both EPA and CARB approved so you can take this portable generator with you anywhere in the USA.

Pros

  • Dual fuel
  • Fuel efficient
  • Great runtime
  • Excellent power output

Cons

  • Noisy & heavy

5. Rockpals 500W Portable Power Station – Best Solar Option

ROCKPALS 500W Portable Power Station, 540Wh Lithium Battery Solar Generator Backup Power Supply with 110V AC Outlet, 2 DC Port, Car Port, Type C, QC 3.0, Emergency Light for Camping Home CPAP

Features

  • Type: Solar
  • Running Watts: 500 watts
  • Surge Watts: 1,000 watts watts
  • Fuel Type: Solar power / wall outlet charge
  • Capacity: 540 watt-hours
  • Start Type: Electric
  • Noise Level: 0 dB
  • Weight: 12.13 lbs
  • Parallel Capable: No
  • EPA Certified: Yes
  • CARB Certified: Yes

Solar powered generators are very popular among campers and a more powerful unit such as the Rockpals 500W could even be enough for charging the bare essentials in an RV.

This unit delivers more continuous power than most solar powered power stations so more electrical appliances can be connected. Besides connecting to a solar panel, it can also be recharged by plugging into a regular wall outlet or even connecting it to the car charger. In short, it is incredibly versatile.

Pros

  • Good power output for a solar powered unit
  • Very lightweight
  • No noise
  • Versatile charging options

Cons

  • Not for larger appliances

6. Jackery Explorer 160 – Most Popular Solar Power Station

Jackery Portable Power Station Explorer 160, 167Wh Lithium Battery Solar Generator (Solar Panel Optional) Backup Power Supply with 110V/100W(Peak 150W) AC Outlet for Outdoors Camping Fishing Emergency

Features

  • Type: Solar
  • Running Watts: 100 watts
  • Surge Watts: 150 watts
  • Fuel Type: Solar / wall charge
  • Capacity: 167 watt-hours
  • Start Type: Electric
  • Noise Level: 0 dB
  • Weight: 3.97 lbs
  • Parallel Capable: No
  • EPA Certified: Yes
  • CARB Certified: Yes

By far the most popular portable power station is the Jackery Explorer 160. This model is extremely lightweight making it a welcome piece of equipment for campers.

This is a user-friendly design thanks to the straightforward control panel with a handy LED display for monitoring. It has plenty of outlets allowing for connecting different low-capacity devices but also for charging the battery in three different ways (car, wall outlet, solar panel).

Pros

  • Extremely lightweight
  • Affordable
  • LED monitor
  • Easy recharging

Cons

  • Only suitable for light loads

7. Briggs & Stratton P3000 – Best Inverter

Briggs & Stratton P3000 PowerSmart Series Inverter Generator with LCD Display and Quiet Power Technology, 3000 Starting Watts 2600 Running Watts, RV Ready

Features

  • Type: Inverter
  • Running Watts: 2,600 watts
  • Surge Watts: 3,000 watts
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline
  • Tank Size: 1.5 gal
  • Start Type: Pull start
  • Runtime: 10 hrs @ 1/4 load
  • Noise Level: 58 dB
  • Weight: 85 lbs
  • Parallel Capable: Yes
  • EPA Certified: Yes
  • CARB Certified: No

The Briggs & Stratton P3000 has been on the market for a while but it remains a strong competitor. It earns big points for its portability, capacity and fuel efficiency.

We like that it has several outlet types including an RV ready outlet and an LED monitoring display on the control panel. Plus, with its narrow design it is easy to carry a second unit on board for extra power whenever needed.

Pros

  • Compact & portable design
  • Fuel efficient
  • RV ready
  • Multiple outlets

Cons

  • Not CARB compliant
  • Pull start

8. WEN 56380i – Best Value

WEN 56380i Super Quiet 3800-Watt Portable Inverter Generator with Fuel Shut-Off and Electric Start

Features

  • Type: Inverter
  • Running Watts: 3,400 watts
  • Surge Watts: 3,800 watts
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline
  • Tank Size: 2.2 gal
  • Start Type: Pull start
  • Runtime: 8.5 hrs @ 1/2 load
  • Noise Level: 57 dB
  • Weight: 111 lbs
  • Parallel Capable: No
  • EPA Certified: Yes
  • CARB Certified: Yes

Considering its impressive specs, we were more than surprised at the friendly price tag of the WEN 56380i. This inverter generator runs very quietly for how much power it delivers, has an excellent fuel economy and comes in a very compact design that fits perfectly in the limited storage space of an RV.

Granted, this unit is somewhat heavy for an inverter generator but the rear wheels and folding handle make up for it. The side panel is removable which makes maintenance an easier task, too.

Pros

  • Easy maintenance
  • Quiet given power output
  • Narrow & portable design
  • Great value
  • LED display

Cons

  • Pull start

9. Rainier R2200i – Best Medium Capacity Model

Rainier R2200i Super Quiet Portable Power Station Outdoor Inverter Generator - 1800 Running & 2200 Peak - Gas Powered - CARB Compliant

Features

  • Type: Inverter
  • Running Watts: 1,800 watts
  • Surge Watts: 2,200 watts
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline
  • Tank Size: 1.3 gal
  • Start Type: Pull start
  • Runtime: 13 hrs @ 1/4 load
  • Noise Level: 52 dB
  • Weight: 44 lbs
  • Parallel Capable: Yes
  • EPA Certified: Yes
  • CARB Certified: Yes

You might recognize the Rainier R2200i from our best inverter generator list and it remains the best option for its power category on this list. Within the 2000-watt generator category this model is the quietest and most lightweight option.

For such a small fuel tank, the run time is still very good. When used for charging sensitive electronics only this unit could last the whole weekend on a single full tank.

Pros

  • Very lightweight
  • Very quiet
  • Great runtime / fuel efficiency

Cons

  • Pull start

10. Paxcess P2300ie – Most User-Friendly

PAXCESS Super Quiet Inverter 2300 Watts Portable Gas Powered RV Generator with Wheels and Handle LCD Display Screen/Eco-Mode/Parallel Ready/CARB Complaint, P2300i

Features

  • Type: Inverter
  • Running Watts: 1,800 watts
  • Surge Watts: 2,300 watts
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline
  • Tank Size: 1.1 gal
  • Start Type: Pull start
  • Runtime: 11 hrs @ 1/4 load
  • Noise Level: 53-63 dB
  • Weight: 50.7 lbs
  • Parallel Capable: Yes
  • EPA Certified: Yes
  • CARB Certified: Yes

If you are looking for an inverter generator that has easy monitoring then this is the best choice for you. It features a highly informative LCD display that shows the voltage, frequency, run time, remaining fuel and its current output.

It also gets user-friendly points for the telescopic handle and rear wheels. At just over 50 pounds this is a generator you can carry in one hand but the extra portability features are always welcome.

Pros

  • Very portable
  • Easy monitoring
  • Good runtime given tank size

Cons

  • Pull start

11. Yamaha EF2200iS – Honorable Mention

Yamaha EF2200iS Inverter Generator, 2200 Watts, Blue

Features

  • Running Watts: 1,800 watts
  • Surge Watts: 2,200 watts
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline
  • Tank Size: 1.24 gal
  • Start Type: Manual recoil
  • Runtime: 10.5 hrs @ 1/4 load
  • Noise Level: 57 dB
  • Weight: 55.2 lbs
  • Parallel Capable: Yes

Inverter generators are a popular choice for use in an RV and the Yamaha EF2200iS is one of the most popular options. It is a compact design with three carrying handles making it extra portable.

Yamaha has always been a popular brand for power equipment because of their excellent engines. The EF2200iS further supports that reputation since it is fuel efficient, runs reliable and has a smart throttle for that automatically adjusts to the current load.

We like that this unit includes a DC outlet for charging batteries which is a very welcome feature on RVs. Of course, it also has an RV ready outlet and a digital monitoring display.

Pros

  • Digital monitoring display
  • Good fuel efficiency
  • RV ready
  • SMmrt throttle

Cons

  • Best using parallel capabilities if you plan to use with RV

RV & Camping Generator Buyers Guide

There are a few specifications that are of greater importance when buying a generator for an RV or for camping. Find out what to look for and what to avoid in this quick buying guide.

PORTABILITY

An RV generator can be a little heavier because it will only have to be carried 20 – 30 feet away from the RV. However, when going camping the generator should be as lightweight and easy to carry, as possible.

For both purposes, choose a model with rear wheels and a comfortable handle for pulling, unless the design is less than 50 pounds. There should also be at least one carrying handle for easy lifting.

NOISE LEVEL

When stalling an RV or at a campsite, we have to keep in mind our neighbors. They won’t be too happy if they are sat next to the overpowering noise of a generator and frankly it won’t bring us the tranquillity we looking for in the outdoors, either.

Look for a generator that has a rated noise level of less than 60 decibels which is about the sound level of clearly spoken conversation. Generators with a noise level of 65 decibels or louder may not always be allowed at a campsite or RV park.

CERTIFICATIONS

There are two important certifications for a generator in the United States. These are the regulations set by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the California Air Resources Board (CARB).

A generator must be CARB compliant for use in California but EPA compliant is sufficient for the other 49 states. However, for use inside national parks there might be stricter regulations.

FUEL EFFICIENCY

When camping or stalling the RV in a remote area, chances are that gasoline is not so easy to get. That is why an RV generator and camping generator should be fuel efficient to prevent loss of electricity.

The safest option is a solar powered portable power station but these usually have a limited capacity. Dual fuel generators are also popular but this does means having to bring along a propane gas tank on the trip.

OUTLETS

When camping, you are likely to connect devices directly to the generator. Look for unit with AC outlets, USB ports, a DC outlet for charging through a car charger and when attaching to an RV, also an RV ready outlet.