Zoom on the WEN 56203i
In a nutshell, the WEN 56203i is a quiet, compact and lightweight portable inverter generator mostly geared towards:
- Camping and tailgating hobbyists looking for a portable power source
- Amateur DIY lovers
In the sections ahead, the power characteristics, availability of various outlets, the portability, and any additional features of the device shall be discussed, including its emission compliance information.
Power & Run Time
The WEN 56203i's engine, 79 cc OHV 4-stroke, fueled by gasoline, can deliver 120V. It provides a running wattage of 1700W and reaches a peak wattage of 2000W. In addition, as it is parallel capable (WEN Parallel Connection Kit (opens in a new tab) not included), this power can be doubled when linked to another similar or compatible unit.
The inverter generator features a conventional pull-start mechanism. It is rated for a low noise of 51 dBA (just slightly more noisy than rainfall), which places it in our list of the 10 quietest portable generators.
The fuel capacity of 1 gallon allows the 56203i to operate for around 7 hours at 50% load with a full tank (fuel consumption around 0.14 GPH).
As the 56203i produces a clean sine wave, with a <1.2% Total Harmonic Disruption (THD), sensitive electronics may be plugged in the AC outlets safely.
The control panel includes the following 2 AC outlets:
Furthermore, it has 3 DC outlets: there's a 12V 8A (cigarette lighter style) receptacle allowing you to easily charge your batteries and two 5V USB ports allowing you to conveniently charge electronics such as mobile phones and tablets.
As the WEN 56203i is an inverter generator, its encased design (L17.3 x W11.5 x H17.7 in) offers more aesthetics than a conventional, open frame product. This type of design is the most modern and convenient way to recreationally generate power.
Since the 56203i weighs only 40.3 lbs, it can be labeled as a portable lightweight generator. The device can be easily moved by just one person and thus, its power may be enjoyed on-the-go. This convenience is further enhanced thanks to its handle (molded in the case) that allows you to carry it with ease.
Some light indicators allow you to instantly see if the generator is ready, its oil levels are insufficient and the generator is on overload.
The fuel shutoff feature turns off the flow of fuel, allowing for the 56203i to use up the remaining fuel from the carburetor before automatically shutting down. This helps fight the build-up and blockages caused by stagnant fuel inside of the carburetor, minimizing maintenance while prolonging the unit’s lifespan.
From a security point of view, the generator is equipped with a low fuel automatic shutdown, an overload protection (circuit breaker) and an automatic low oil shut-off, giving you a peace of mind during use.
Apart from the typical documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab), which lets you start it right away, the WEN 56203i also is packed along with the following accessories: funnel and tool kit.
The WEN 56203i is EPA-approved and CARB-compliant. It can therefore be sold and purchased in all 50 states, including California.
Moreover, it features a spark arrestor and thus, may be used in forested areas.
The WEN 56203i versus other generators
The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the WEN 56203i compare to generators of similar power (between 1500 and 2500 W).
- In terms of its dry weight, the WEN 56203i stands at only 40.3 lbs, meaning that is one of the lighter devices of the 1500-2500 rated wattage category If you are concerned by weight, one of the champions in the above-mentioned power range is the Champion 200949, with a dry weight of just 38.6 pounds.
- With a lowest possible noise of 51 dBA, this inverter generator places itself amongst the more quiet of the products delivering similar power. If noise emissions are important to you, one of the least noisy generators of this power range is the Honda EU2200i with only 48 dBA.
- The 56203i, falls within the average autonomy range compared to generators of a roughly same power, with a run time of around 7 hours at a 50% load and a full tank. If autonomy is your priority, one of the devices of a similar power output with the highest run time is the Westinghouse WGen2000, reaching around 20 hours.
- While the run time is an important parameter, it is dependent on the fuel tank’s capacity and thus, doesn’t say much on its own unless we consider fuel consumption as well. This inverter generator, with an estimated fuel consumption of just 0.14 GPH (gallon per hour) at 50% load, is one of the more fuel efficient generators, for the previously mentioned wattage range. If you wish to further improve in the area of fuel efficiency, the Westinghouse iGen2200, which boasts with a gas consumption of only 0.12 GPH, may be the right generator for you.
Here's a list of the most popular specific comparisons:
As you can see from this interactive chart, when compared to other 1500-2500W generators, the WEN 56203i is on the cheap side of the price range.
It can therefore be a really good buy if you're looking to acquire a budget generator.
The bottom line
- Several accessories included
- Parallel capable
- Lightweight (40.3 lbs)
- Quiet for its power (51 dBA)
- Fuel efficient
- Decent run time
- No data center
- No electric start
Features and Specifications
|Parallel capable||Yes, cable not included|
|Engine||79 cc OHV 4-stroke|
|Voltage||AC: 120V 60 Hz, DC: 12V|
|Running watts||1700 W|
|Starting watts||2000 W|
|Running amps||14.2 amps|
|Peak amps||16.7 amps|
|Run time @50% load||7 h|
|Run time @25% load||Unknown|
|Automatic Voltage Regulation||Inverter|
|AC outlets||1x Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R)|
|DC outlets||1x 12V 8A (cigarette lighter style) |
2x 5V USB port
|Indicators||Low oil, overload and output ready|
|Fuel tank||1 gal|
|Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)||17.3 x 11.5 x 17.7 in|
|Noise (lower limit)||51 dBA|
|Security||Low oil, overload and low fuel protection|
|Accessories included||Funnel and tool kit|
Unlike many websites, we did our best to research each of the specs above. That being said, we are not immune to making the occasional mistake or omission. Should you notice any missing or incorrect values, don't hesitate to suggest improvements so we can address the issue.
WEN Products, founded by Nick Anton in 1951, is an American power tool manufacturer and distributor, which claims to have a part in the development of modern chainsaw, soldering devices and wet sharpeners, through its research in random orbital technology. The Illinois based company expanded its distribution network to include various power tools, such as presses, drills and of course, power generators. As a distributor, WEN’s portfolio largely consists of branded products of different manufacturers, imported from Asia.
The WEN 56203i is covered under a warranty for up to 2 years. This warranty may be limited and may not cover all parts of the generator.
For more information about the warranty of WEN generators, please consult WEN's warranty policies (opens in a new tab). Alternatively, you can also contact their Customer Support: 1-847-429-9263.
Questions & Answers
What can it power?
|Item||Running Watts||Starting Watts|
|At home||Refrigerator (energy star)||192||1192|
|Total||992 W||1992 W|
|For camping||RV AC (11,000 BTU)||1010||1600|
|Total||1340 W||1930 W|
|For work||Demolition hammer||1260||1260|
|Total||1340 W||1340 W|
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