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The Top 10 Smallest Portable Generators

Portable generators come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes. The market is full of devices which range from such that can fit on your shelf, to those which require wheels to move around. But which are the smallest?

In this article, we will focus on the smallest portable generators currently on the market. After all, portability is the reason why most people are after portable generators in the first place, be it for the lack of space in their garage, to avoid the struggle of moving around a heavy device, or so that they can fit them in their car trunk. It makes sense to look for the smallest ones possible.

However, their small size comes at a price. Most significantly, the shrunken dimensions take their toll on the generator’s wattage, fuel capacity and the number and types of available outlets. In addition, they are not always all that cheaper than their larger counterparts. Sometimes even on the contrary, as it may be actually harder to fit a well working generator with all its parts into a small, portable casket.

Many small generators are inverter generators and vice versa, most inverter generators are small. Most people will benefit from inverter generators, as they can be used to directly power any device, including sensitive electronics, but you should keep in mind that they have an inherently higher price/wattage ratio.

With that said, even the smallest generators are well equipped to preform most recreational and hobbyist tasks. The demand for them is stunning – even you came to check them out! So here they are, the top 10 smallest portable generators currently on the market!

Top 10 Smallest Portable Generators

GeneratorWattage
(running/starting)
Dimensions
(inches)
WeightLinks
Lifan ESI 860i-CALifan ESI 860i-CA600 W/700 W14 x 9 x 1323 lbsBuy On Amazon (opens in a new tab)
Sportsman GEN1000iSportsman GEN1000i800 W/1000 W15.6 x 8 x 13.820.3 lbsBuy On Amazon (opens in a new tab)
Sportsman GEN1000Sportsman GEN1000900 W/1000 W14 x 12 x 1238 lbsBuy at Home Depot (opens in a new tab)
Pulsar PG1202SPulsar PG1202S850 W/1200 W14.6 x 12.4 x 12.437.5 lbsBuy On Amazon (opens in a new tab)
Yamaha EF1000iSYamaha EF1000iS900 W/1000 W17.7 x 9.4 x 14.927.9 lbsBuy On Amazon (opens in a new tab)
Honda EU1000iHonda EU1000i900 W/1000 W17.7 x 9.4 x 1528.7 lbsBuy On Amazon (opens in a new tab)
WEN 56125iWEN 56125i1000 W/1250 W17 x 9 x 16.531.6 lbsBuy on eBay (opens in a new tab)
WEN 56105WEN 56105900 W/1000 W15 x 12 x 14.539 lbsBuy at Home Depot (opens in a new tab)
Westinghouse iGen1200Westinghouse iGen12001000 W/1200 W18 x 10 x 15.533 lbsBuy On Amazon (opens in a new tab)
ECHO EGi-1200ECHO EGi-12001000 W/1200 W16 x 11 x 1630 lbsBuy On Amazon (opens in a new tab)

Zoom on the Smallest Portable Generators

Lifan ESI 860i-CA

Lifan ESI 860i-CA
Running Watts600W
Starting Watts700W
Dimensions14x9x13
Weight23 lbs
InverterYes
Noise rating58 dBA
AC outlets1
DC outputYes

Given its approximate dimensions of 14 x 9 x 13" and its light weight of 23 lbs, the Lifan ESI 860i-CA is the smallest of all the portable generators in our database. These small dimensions make it particularly well suited when you want to generate power on-the-go, bring it on a camping trip, or do some small DIY tasks.

Panel of the Lifan ESI 860i-CA

The Lifan ESI 860i-CA's control panel

Its 40 cc, OHV 4-stroke, Lifan engine can deliver up to 600 running watts and 700 starting watts. It offers 3 hours of run time at 50% load, which is a relatively deceiving value. However, this low runtime still is perfectly suitable if you find yourself in a short power outage or have a small job to do. Its noise emissions are low for its power, as its sound level at 23 feet can be as low as 58 dB (less noisy than a quiet suburb).

Its control panel offers 1 AC outlet (NEMA 5-20R), as well as a 12V receptacle to let you conveniently charge your batteries. Because it's an inverter generator, its low THD (<2%) allows you to safely plug in any appliances with sensitive electronic components (laptops, mobile phones, etc.).

The unit is CARB-compliant (which means it can be purchased in any of the 50 states). It can also be operated without any worries, as it features a low oil sensor, which prevents engine damage and circuit breakers, which prevent overload.

The price of this model is cheap, when compared to similarly-powerful units.

PROS
  • Inexpensive
  • Inverter
  • Lightweight (23 lbs)
  • Quiet for its power (58 dBA)
CONS
  • Only 1 AC outlet
  • No parallel ports
  • Relatively low run time

Sportsman GEN1000i

Sportsman GEN1000i
Running Watts800W
Starting Watts1000W
Dimensions15.6x8x13.8
Weight20.3 lbs
InverterYes
Noise rating56 dBA
AC outlets1
DC outputYes

The Sportsman GEN1000i is a fine example of modern, small scale, portable generator technology. Its 40 cc, OHV 4-stroke engine produces up to 800 running watts and 1000 starting watts, which is quite impressive, given its small dimensions of just 15.6 x 8 x 13.8" and 20.3 lbs weight. This combination of parameters makes it ideal if you want to generate electricity on-the-go, take it with you on a camping trip, or work on some small do-it-yourself tasks.

The Sportsman GEN1000i in use

The Sportsman GEN1000i

The GEN1000i has a 6.3 hour runtime when measured at a 50% load, which is a relatively deceiving value. With that in mind, this runtime makes the GEN1000i a perfectly suitable solution for surviving extended power outages or spending most of the day off-grid. The generator’s noise emissions are low, given its power. At 23 ft, its sound can be as low as 56 dB (less noisy than a conversation at home).

The control panel of this generator features 1 AC outlet (NEMA 5-20R), along with a USB port. Thus, you can directly plug-in your mobile phone and other portable devices.

The Sportsman GEN1000i is an inverter generator with a THD <5 %. As is the case with any other inverter generator, you can rely on it to safely power devices which are THD sensitive (phones, laptops, etc.).

The unit is CARB-compliant and EPA-approved (which means it can be purchased in any of the 50 states). Operating the unit is made trouble-less, thanks to a low oil sensor, which prevents engine damage and circuit breakers, which prevent overload. As for its price, we find the Sportsman GEN1000i to be about what you’d expect from a device with these specs.

PROS
  • In the expected price range
  • Inverter
  • Lightweight (20.3 lbs)
  • Quiet for its power (56 dBA)
  • Fuel efficient
CONS
  • Only 1 AC outlet
  • No parallel ports
  • Relatively low run time

Sportsman GEN1000

Sportsman GEN1000
Running Watts900W
Starting Watts1000W
Dimensions14x12x12
Weight38 lbs
InverterNo
Noise rating65 dBA
AC outlets1
DC outputNo

The Sportsman GEN1000 is another exquisitely small, 14 x 12 x 12" big, 38 lbs heavy, portable generator. It is powered by a 72 cc, 2-stroke engine, that can deliver up to 900 running watts and 1000 starting watts - values which are perfect for working on small do-it-yourself projects, generating power on-the-go, or your RV.

The Sportsman GEN1000 in use

The Sportsman GEN1000

This output comes at a cost of some noise, which is lies within the average range of its similarly powerful peers, 65 dB (just slightly more noisy than a normal conversation) when measured at 23 ft.

At a 50% load, this generator has a relatively deceiving 5-hour runtime, which remains perfectly suitable when you want to go tailgating or spend half a day working remotely on one of your projects. The GEN1000‘s control panel features 1 AC outlet (NEMA 5-20R).

Given its low oil sensor, which prevents engine damage and circuit breakers, which prevent overload, the unit can be operated while keeping a real peace of mind. The unit is CARB-compliant and EPA-approved (which means it can be purchased in any of the 50 states).

When compared to similarly powerful units, the Sportsman GEN1000 is cheaper than its peers.

PROS
  • Inexpensive
  • Lightweight (38 lbs)
CONS
  • Only 1 AC outlet
  • Gas/oil mix required (2-cycle engine)
  • Relatively low run time
  • Low fuel efficiency

Pulsar PG1202S

Pulsar PG1202S
Running Watts850W
Starting Watts1200W
Dimensions14.6x12.4x12.4
Weight37.5 lbs
InverterNo
Noise rating65 dBA
AC outlets2
DC outputYes

Next on our list of the smallest generators, at 14.6 x 12.4 x 12.4" and 37.5 lbs, is the Pulsar PG1202S. Its 72 cc, 2-stroke, Ducar engine produces up to 1200 starting watts and 850 running watts, which are the right values for anybody who desires to generate power on-the-go, wants to do some small DIY tasks, or needs additional power in their RV.

The Pulsar PG1202S in use

The Pulsar PG1202S

Pulsar PG1202S’s power can be reaped for up to 8.5 hours, at a 50% load. This is a usual value, considering its power. Thus, the PG1202S is ideal if you don't want to fear running out of fuel in the middle of the night.

As for its noise emissions, the PG1202S lies within the average range of its similarly powerful peers. Its sound level at 23 feet can be as low as 65 dB (just slightly more noisy than an office).

The PG1202S’s power is fed through a control panel, which is equipped with 2 AC outlets (duplex NEMA 5-20R), and also a 12V receptacle. This way, the PG1202S lets you conveniently charge your batteries.

On top of that, this generator is equipped with circuit breakers to prevent overload, providing you, the user, comfort and safety. The unit is CARB-compliant and EPA-approved (which means it can be purchased in any of the 50 states).

As for its price, the Pulsar PG1202S is considered to be cheaper than its peers.

PROS
  • Inexpensive
  • Lightweight (37.5 lbs)
CONS
  • Gas/oil mix required (2-cycle engine)

Yamaha EF1000iS

Yamaha EF1000iS
Running Watts900W
Starting Watts1000W
Dimensions17.7x9.4x14.9
Weight27.9 lbs
InverterYes
Noise rating47 dBA
AC outlets2
DC outputYes

The fifth smallest portable generator in our database is the 17.7 x 9.4 x 14.9", 27.9 lbs, Yamaha EF1000iS. This little beauty delivers up to 1000 starting watts and 900 running watts, with its 50 cc, OHV 4-stroke, Yamaha MZ50 engine. It is a great device for generating power on-the-go, a camping trip, or small scale DIY tasks.

The Yamaha EF1000iS in use

The Yamaha EF1000iS

This power can be conveniently collected through the EF1000iS’s control panel, using its 2 AC outlets (duplex NEMA 5-15R), or a 12V receptacle, a suitable choice if you wish to conveniently charge your batteries.

As some other generators on this list, the EF1000iS is an inverter generator, with a THD which doesn’t top 2.5%, allowing you to power sensitive electronic devices directly (phones, laptops, etc.).

The Yamaha EF1000iS’s runtime reaches up to 11.9 hours, if measured at a 25% load - a quite impressive value given its specs, if you’d ask me. For illustration, this makes the EF1000iS an ideal choice for running it throughout the night.

As any other portable generator, the Yamaha EF1000iS produces some noise when running. At 23 ft, its volume reaches a minimum of 47 dB (less noisy than bird calls) – a sound level that can be considered low, given its power. The unit is CARB-compliant and EPA-approved (which means it can be purchased in any of the 50 states). And thanks to a low oil sensor, which prevents engine damage and circuit breakers to prevent overload, the unit can be operated safely even when you aren’t always around.

In conclusion, we rate the Yamaha EF1000iS’s price expensive, considering its power.

PROS
  • Inverter
  • Lightweight (27.9 lbs)
  • Quiet for its power (47 dBA)
  • High run time
  • Fuel efficient
CONS
  • On the expensive side
  • No parallel ports

Honda EU1000i

Honda EU1000i
Running Watts900W
Starting Watts1000W
Dimensions17.7x9.4x15
Weight28.7 lbs
InverterYes
Noise rating42 dBA
AC outlets2
DC outputYes

Next on the chopping block is the Honda EU1000i. Even this deep into our list, it still surprisingly light and small, as it weighs just about 28.7 lbs and measures 17.7 x 9.4 x 15". Its 49.4 cc, OHV 4-stroke, Honda GXH50 engine delivers up to 900 running watts and 1000 starting watts. These values make the Honda EU1000i fantastic for generating power on-the-go, bringing on a camping trip, or working on small scale DIY tasks.

The Honda EU1000i in use

The Honda EU1000i

As the EU1000i is parallel capable, it can be hooked up in parallel with any compatible generator for even more power. The Honda EU1000i is an inverter generator, and has a low THD of <3%. It can therefore safely power devices with sensitive eletronic components (phones, laptops, etc.).

When it comes to its autonomy, the Honda EU1000i, at a 25% load, has a relatively deceiving 7.1 hour runtime. Still, this runtime is perfectly suitable when you need to easily survive extended power outages or spend most of the day off-grid. When measured at a distance of 23 feet, this generator’s output results in noise emissions which can be as low as 42 dB (just slightly more noisy than bird calls).

In addition, its control panel features 2 AC outlets (duplex NEMA 5-15R), plus a 12V receptacle, which can be useful for tasks such as charging your batteries.

The unit is CARB-compliant and EPA-approved (which means it can be purchased in any of the 50 states). To assure its safety of operation, it features a low oil sensor, which prevents engine damage and circuit breakers, which prevent overload.

When considering its price, the Honda EU1000i fits into the expensive price range, upon comparison with its similarly powerful peers.

PROS
  • Parallel capable
  • Inverter
  • CO Minder (according to model)
  • Lightweight (28.7 lbs)
  • Quiet for its power (42 dBA)
CONS
  • On the expensive side
  • Relatively low run time

WEN 56125i

WEN 56125i
Running Watts1000W
Starting Watts1250W
Dimensions17x9x16.5
Weight31.6 lbs
InverterYes
Noise rating51 dBA
AC outlets2
DC outputYes

The seventh tiniest generator currently featured in our database is a special one. It is the 17 x 9 x 16.5" big, 31.6 lbs heavy, WEN 56125i.

Panel of the WEN 56125i

The WEN 56125i's control panel

It is also an inverter generator, whose value of THD is <1.2%. Sensitive electronic accessories, such as phones or laptops, can be safely powered with this device. In addition, the 56125i is also parallel capable, which means that it can be hooked up to a compatible generator to maximize its output.

The WEN 56125i is powered by a 60 cc, OHV 4-stroke, WEN engine and can deliver up to 1250 starting watts and 1000 running watts. This wattage makes it ideal for generating power on-the-go, a camping trip, or small scale DIY tasks.

It can keep running for up to 5 hours, when measured at a 50% load. All things considered, this runtime value is relatively deceiving, when compared to similarly powerful units. Nethertheless, the 56125i’s runtime makes it a perfectly suitable choice for tailgating or spending half a day on one of your projects.

Regarding noise emissions of the WEN 56125i, we can consider them as low, given its power. When measured at a distance of 23 feet, the noise level can be as low as 51 dB (just slightly more noisy than rainfall).

The 56125i and its functions are controlled by a dedicated control panel, which is equipped with 2 AC outlets (duplex NEMA 5-20R), and also 2 USB ports on the top, so you can directly plug-in your mobile phone and other portable devices.

The unit is CARB-compliant and EPA-approved (which means it can be purchased in any of the 50 states). WEN 56125i is overall a safe device to operate, thanks to its safety features, such as a low oil sensor, which prevents engine damage and circuit breakers, which prevent overload.

As for pricing, the WEN 56125i’s price fits the average price range.

PROS
  • In the expected price range
  • Parallel capable
  • Inverter
  • Lightweight (31.6 lbs)
  • Quiet for its power (51 dBA)
CONS
  • Relatively low run time

WEN 56105

WEN 56105
Running Watts900W
Starting Watts1000W
Dimensions15x12x14.5
Weight39 lbs
InverterNo
Noise rating95 dBA
AC outlets1
DC outputNo

The WEN 56105 is the eighth of the smallest portable generators on this list, and in our highly curated database. It has the dimensions of 15 x 12 x 14.5", and a weight of 39 lbs.

Panel of the WEN 56105

The WEN 56105

Inside is hidden a 63 cc, 2-stroke, WEN engine, that delivers wattages of up to 900 running watts and 1000 starting watts. The WEN 56105 is therefore a good choice for generating power on-the-go, small scale DIY tasks, or your RV.

The noise emissions of the WEN 56105 are fairly high, when considering other devices of similar wattages. They measure up to 95 dB (which is pretty noisy) at 23 ft.

If measured at a 50% load, the WEN 56105 has a relatively deceiving 5 hour runtime. Given that duration, this generator is perfectly suitable whenever you want to go tailgating or spend half a day working remotely on one of your projects.

The 56105‘s control panel features 1 AC outlet (NEMA 5-20R).

Given its circuit breakers, which prevent overload, you can operate this device without any unnecessary fear. The unit is CARB-compliant and EPA-approved (which means it can be purchased in any of the 50 states).

The WEN 56105 is cheaper than its peers, when compared to other units of similar power output.

PROS
  • Inexpensive
CONS
  • Only 1 AC outlet
  • Gas/oil mix required (2-cycle engine)
  • On the noisy side (95 dBA)
  • Relatively low run time
  • Low fuel efficiency

Westinghouse iGen1200

Westinghouse iGen1200
Running Watts1000W
Starting Watts1200W
Dimensions18x10x15.5
Weight33 lbs
InverterYes
Noise rating52 dBA
AC outlets2
DC outputYes

The runner up to the final device on this list stands at 18 x 10 x 15.5" and weighs in at 33 lbs – still pretty small, even for a portable generator. It is the Westinghouse iGen1200.

The Westinghouse iGen1200 in use

The Westinghouse iGen1200

Its 54 cc, OHV 4-stroke, Westinghouse engine can deliver the following wattages: 1200 starting watts and 1000 running watts. With these wattages, this model is ideal for anyone who wants to generate power on-the-go, wants to bring it on a camping trip, or wants to do some small DIY tasks. And if these weren’t just good enough for you, with its parallel capability, they can be easily doubled by coupling it along with another parallel capable device!

The aforementioned power may be drained for up to 9 hours on a single tank, at a 25% load. This is a usual value for a generator of this power ouput. Thus, the Westinghouse iGen1200 is ideal if you don't want to fear running out of fuel in the middle of the night.

As is the case for some other devices on this list, the Westinghouse iGen1200 is an inverter generator and accordingly can be used to safely power sensitive electronics, cell phones or laptops, with its THD <3%. In terms of its noise, we find its values low, considering its power output. iGen1200’s volume can be as low as 52 dB when measured at a distance of 23 ft (just slightly more noisy than a refrigerator).

iGen1200’s power is harvested through its control panel, equipped with 2 AC outlets (duplex NEMA 5-20R) and in addition also 2 USB ports. It therefore allows you to comfortably directly plug-in your mobile phone and other portable devices.

To top this off, the unit is equipped with a low oil sensor, which prevents engine damage and circuit breakers, which prevent overload, providing us with a feeling of comfort and safety. The unit is CARB-compliant and EPA-approved (which means it can be purchased in any of the 50 states).

Lastly, when compared to other portable generators of similar output, the Westinghouse iGen1200’s price should be considered average.

PROS
  • In the expected price range
  • Parallel capable
  • Inverter
  • Lightweight (33 lbs)
  • Quiet for its power (52 dBA)
CONS
  • Low fuel efficiency

ECHO EGi-1200

ECHO EGi-1200
Running Watts1000W
Starting Watts1200W
Dimensions16x11x16
Weight30 lbs
InverterYes
Noise rating64 dBA
AC outlets2
DC outputYes

The last of the 10 smallest portable generators in our database is the ECHO EGi-1200. Measuring 16 x 11 x 16" and weighing 30 lbs, this gem can produce up to 1200 starting watts and 1000 running watts. It is powered by a 60 cc, OHV 4-stroke engine and is overall a great device for generating power on-the-go, a camping trip, or small scale DIY tasks.

The ECHO EGi-1200 in use

The ECHO EGi-1200

The EGi-1200’s power can be conveniently collected through its control panel, from its 2 AC outlets (duplex NEMA 5-20R), or a 12V receptacle and 2 USB ports. This is a suitable choice if you want to conveniently charge your batteries and directly plug-in your mobile phone and other portable devices.

Similarly to other devices on this list, the EGi-1200 is also parallel capable. It can therefore be easily hooked to any other compatible generator for extra power. Unsurprisingly, it is also an inverter generator, with a THD which stays right below 3%. You may therefore use the EGi-1200 to power sensitive electronic devices directly (phones, laptops, etc.).

The ECHO EGi-1200’s runtimes reach up to 5.2 hours, when they are measured at a 50% load. This is a somewhat deceiving value given the unit’s power. Despite that, the EGi-1200 is a perfectly suitable choice for surviving extended power outages or spending most of the day off-grid.

As is always the case, the ECHO EGi-1200 will produce some noise when running. At a 23 ft distance from the generator, this value reaches at least 64 dB, which is just slightly more noisy than background music. This is a volume standard for its power.

The unit is CARB-compliant and EPA-approved (which means it can be purchased in any of the 50 states). In addition, with the aid of a low oil sensor, which prevents engine damage and circuit breakers, which prevent overload, the unit is operated safely even if you dare to take your eyes off it.

Summed up, the ECHO EGi-1200’s price is average, given its power.

PROS
  • In the expected price range
  • Parallel capable
  • Inverter
  • Lightweight (30 lbs)
CONS
  • Relatively low run time

Conclusion

This concludes our list of the smallest portable generators currently on the market. Even though they are far from the most powerful, or the longest running generators on the market, they are the most portable, which is what most look for in a portable generator in the first place.

We hope you’ve found here at least one or two generators which may suit you. If not, don’t worry! Whenever there’s a new one out, we’ll let you know by updating our list accordingly.

Paul

Paul

Manager & Editor of generatorbible.com. Early retired from the OPE industry, living in South Carolina. He now mostly spends his time traveling and taking care of his wife and grand-children.

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