Best 5000 Watt Generators Ranked And Compared – Reliable Inverters

Last Updated on November 11, 2020 by Scott

5000 watt generator

Whether you are needing power at a jobsite or want a backup power source for your home in an emergency, having a reliable generator is key.

5000-watt generators are the perfect fit for riding out a power outage or powering tools away from a dedicated power source.

I have put some of the most popular 5000 watt generators head to head to give you a quick and easy buyers guide to help make your decision easier. Within this guide we will be comparing generators based on their power output, weights, run times, noise levels, and features.

The purpose of this guide is to give you the features, pros, and cons of some of the most popular 5000-watt generators on the market for you to make an educated buying decision. Not all generators are created equally, and we look at the good and the bad sides of the generator market.

Below are the best 5000W portable generators ranked and compared:

1. Westinghouse WGen5500 – My #1 Choice, Most Comprehensive & Best Performing 5000 Watt Generator

When shopping for a generator for your home or job site, you are going to want an all-in-one solution for your needs.

On top of that, you are going to want the most reliable generator available to ensure your power needs go uninterrupted.

This is where the Westinghouse WGen 5500 outshines the competition.

Westinghouse WGen5500 Portable Generator with Cover - 5500 Rated Watts & 6850 Peak Watts - Gas Powered - - Transfer Switch Ready
  • 5500 running watts and 6850 peak watts; recoil start; 6.6 gallon fuel tank with fuel gauge; hour meter; 13 hour run time at 50% load
  • Features two GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) 5-20R 120V household Duplex receptacle and one L14-30R 120/240V twist-lock receptacle; all outlets have rubber covers for added safety
  • Plug-and-play: comes with a Westinghouse generator cover, oil, an oil funnel, a tool kit, and a user's Manual to get you started right out of the box (minimal assembly required)

This generator pumps out 5500 running watts/6875 starting watts with an impressive estimated 13 hour run time at 50% load.

It is also one of the lightest on the list, tipping the scales at only 170lbs.

Combine this light weight with the easy to use transporting handle and wheels, and you have got an easy to transport, all in one power solution.

Westinghouse generator

The Westinghouse WGen 5500 is also transfer-switch ready for those wanting to connect to hardwired appliances in the house.

This is a huge advantage for those wanting a home backup generator on a transfer switch.

The WGen 5500 Features:

  • 420cc Westinghouse OHV Engine
  • Running Watts: 5500
  • Starting Watts: 6875
  • Weight: 170 lbs
  • 6.6 Gallon Capacity Fuel Tank
  • 14 Hour Runtime @ 50% Load
  • 120v/240v 30A L14-30R
  • 4 – 120v 20A 5-20R (GFCI) (Household Style Outlets)
  • Oil, Oil Funnel, And Tool Kit Included
  • EPA, Carb, CSA Compliant
  • Sound Level: 72 Decibels From 23 Feet Away
  • Recoil Style Start

Backed by a 3-year warranty you can rest assured that the Westinghouse WGen5500 5000 watts generator will keep your project moving along without worry. Westinghouse also provides lifetime support with skilled technicians and a wide network of over 1,500 service locations.

Pros

Pros
  • Lightweight
  • EPA, Carb, CSA Compliant
  • Come With Oil, Oil Funnel, and Tool Kit
  • Transfer Switch Ready
  • Low Oil Shutoff

Cons

Cons
    • Few Customer Complaints Of Broken Parts
    • List Item #1
Customer Reviews: As of publishing this post, the Westinghouse WGen550 received a few positive  reviews from customers . It is sitting at a 4.5 out of 5 stars which leads us to believe that this will also be a consumer favorite.

IMHO: In My Humble Opinion
The Westinghouse made the top of the list for the simple fact that it is an easy to use, all in one solution for both homeowners and job sites. With all of the features and benefits this generator has to offer, you cannot go wrong with the WGen5500. In choose this for the best 5000 watt generator this year.

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2. Wen 56551 – A Budget-Friendly, Customer Favorite.

If the price is a factor, but you do not want to sacrifice many key features, the Wen 56551 will fit the bill.

Coming in under $600, this Wen generator is easy on the wallet and features a lot of the same amenities as others on this list.

The Wen 56551 powers 5000 running watts/5500 watts and has a slightly less estimated run time than the Westington, coming in at 11 hours at 50% load.

WEN 56551, 5000 Running Watts/5500 Starting Watts, Gas Powered Portable Generator
  • 389cc 13 HP OHV engine provides 5500 surge watts and 5000 running watts
  • 6.5-gallon fuel tank runs for 11 hours at half load
  • Automatic voltage regulator helps produce cleaner power to protect your electronics

Weighing in at only 182.5 lbs, the Wen is still on the lighter sides of larger generators and features foldable handles and wheels for easy transportation.

A customer favorite feature is the spark arrestor which helps this generator meet the standards for use in National Parks.

Wen 56551 tank and recoil starter

The Wen 56551 Features:

  • 389cc 13HP OHV Engine
  • Running Watts: 5000W
  • Starting Watts: 5500
  • Weight: 182.5 lbs
  • 6.5 Gallon Capacity Fuel Tank
  • 11 Hour Runtime @ 50% Load
  • 1 – 120v/240v 30A L14-30R
  • 4 – 120v 20A Receptacles (Household Style Outlets)
  • 1 – 12v DC Outlet (Cigarette Lighter Style Receptacle)
  • Sound Level: 74 Decibels From 23 Feet Away
  • Recoil Style Start

Backed by a 2-year warranty the Wen 56551’s support system is exactly what we would want in a generator purchase.

Wen also provides a wide network of skilled techs to fulfill any service needs to your generator. If you need technical support, Wen also has a friendly customer service line for any questions you may have about your generator.

Pros

Pros
  • Lightweight
  • 11 Hour Run Time
  • 12v DC Outlet (Cigarette Lighter Style Receptacle)
  • Meets Standard For Use In National Parks

Cons

Cons
    • Slightly Louder Than Most
Customer Reviews: In a close second to number of Amazon reviews lies the Wen 56551 with nearly 500 customer reviews at the time of this article. With a 4 out of 5-star rating, consumers are generally happy with their purchase.

IMHO: In My Humble Opinion
The Wen has all of the features you would need in a generator at a very affordable price. The noise level is a bit high, but if this is not a concern, then this generator is a great contender.

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3. Pulsar PG6000 – More Starting Watts

If you want a generator that puts out some serious power but don’t want a heavy, bulky unit, the Pulsar PG6000 needs to be on your list.

The PG6000 is the second largest watt generator on the list but weights in at only 181 lbs (slightly less than the Wen).

The Pulsar PG6000 put out 5000 running watts and 6000 starting watts with an impressive 13.5 hours running time.

Pulsar 6,000W Portable Gas-Powered Generator with Wheel Kit, PG6000
  • 6, 000 Peak Watts/ 5, 000 Running Watts
  • The Single Cylinder, 4-Stroke, Air Cooled, OHV Engine with Recoil Start is protected by a durable powder coated frame
  • A 6. 6 Gallon Fuel Tank gives you up to 15 hours of continuous operation at half load

This generator was designed to power up to three major appliances at once and features an easy to read digital meter and fuel gauge for easy operation.

The PG6000’s seven different outlets can power virtually anything from 120V to 240V to 12 volts.

Pulsar portable generator

The Pulsar PG6000 Features:

  • 303cc 10HP OHV Engine
  • Running Watts: 6000
  • Starting Watts: 6000
  • Weight: 181 lbs
  • 6.6 Gallon Capacity Fuel Tank
  • 13.5 Hour Runtime @ 50% Load
  • 4-120V outlets (Household Style Outlets)
  • 1-120V/240V twist-lock outlet
  • 1-120V twist-lock outlet
  • 12V DC output (Cigarette Lighter Style Receptacle)
  • Sound Level: 72 Decibels From 23 Feet Away

Pulsar’s products are backed by some of the longest and strongest consumer warranties in the industry giving you peace of mind when buying the PG6000.

More information of Pulsar’s warranty can be found by visiting Pulsar’s Website.

Pros

Pros
  • Lightweight
  • 13.5 Hour Run Time
  • 12v DC Outlet (Cigarette Lighter Style Receptacle)
  • 3-in-1 Digital Meter

Cons

Cons
    • Outlets Not Covered Like Other Models
Customer Reviews: Although this is one of the best 5000 watts portable generators in my opinion, at the time of publishing this post there are currently only 26 reviews on Amazon for the Pulsar 6000. Out of those 26 reviews, the PG6000 got a healthy 4 out of 5-star rating.

IMHO: In My Humble Opinion
The Pulsar 6000 seems to be the best bang for your buck with high power and low cost/weight. The only thing keeping it from the top of my list is the lack of customer reviews.

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4. Champion 5000W – Built With Safety In Mind

Using a generator is generally a safe procedure, however, if not careful, there can be unnecessary risks. The Champion 5000 was built with safety in mind to keep you and your generator as safe as possible.

The Champion 5000 is pushing out 5000 watts and has a run time of 9 hours at 50% load.

While this seems pretty standard, it’s the built-in safety features and 152 lb weight that makes the Champion stand out from the competition.

Champion 5000-Watt Portable Generator with Wheel Kit
  • Designed for Safety – Includes a low-oil shut-off sensor and 1.2-quarts of recommended 10W-30 engine oil
  • Reliable and Powerful – At 6250 starting watts and 5000 running watts, enjoy up to 9 hours of run time on a full tank of gasoline with a noise level of 74 dBA from 23 feet
  • Covered Outlets – One 120/240V 30A locking outlet and four 120V 20A GFCI outlets

This Champion generator features a low oil shut-off sensor that automatically shuts your generator off when your oil is running low to prevent damage to the 292cc motor.

This is vital as checking the oil is a commonly looked over maintenance task and can cause catastrophic damage to your generator.

champion generator in a garage

Another feature on this generator is the Volt Guard.

This feature prevents overloads and keeps your generator safe from voltage spikes.

Built into this Volt Guard is Intelligauge – a device that keeps track of voltage, frequency, and operating hours.

The Champion 5000W Features:

  • 292cc OHV Engine
  • Running Watts: 5000
  • Starting Watts: 6250
  • Weight: 152.1 lbs
  • 5.7 Gallon Capacity Fuel Tank
  • 9 Hour Runtime @ 50% Load
  • 4-120V outlets (Household Style Outlets)
  • 1-120V/240V twist-lock outlet
  • Various Safety Features
  • Sound Level: 74 Decibels From 23 Feet Away
  • Recoil Style Start

Champion supports their generators with a 3-year warranty and free lifetime support from skilled experts to keep your investment running smoothly.

Pros

Pros
  • Very Lightweight
  • Safety Features
  • Covered Outlets
  • Lifetime Support

Cons

Cons
    • Lower Run Time Than Most
Customer Reviews: With only 2 customer reviews on Amazon (at the time of publishing this post), it’s a stretch to say the 4.5 out of 5 stars is a good way to gauge the quality and dependability of this generator. However, I believe this one will become a hard hitter later down the road.

IMHO: In My Humble Opinion
The Champion is the perfect generator for homeowners who would be using their generator to supply power to their house in emergency cases. The advanced safety features make the generator very consumer friendly and is affordable for most income levels.

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5. Powerstroke PS906811P – Powered By Honda

For those looking for the most power out of their generator where budget and weight are not a factor, the Powerstroke PS906811P is the solution.

This generator was built with job sites and home backups in mind.

Powering out 6800 running watts/8500 starting watts and a 12 hour load time, this Powerstroke generator outpowers the competition.

PowerStroke PS906811P, 6800 Running Watts/8500 Starting Watts, Gas Powered Portable Generator
  • Honda GX390 389cc OHV Electric Start Engine; 6800 running watts and 8500 starting watts
  • 4-120V AC 20A outlets; 1-240V AC 30A outlet
  • Large 8.0 Gal Metal Fuel Tank (12 hr. runtime at 50 percent load)

The powerful Honda GX390 389cc OHV Electric Start Engine not only makes it easy to start, it helps power large loads most generators can’t power.

With the larger motor and impressive 8.0-gallon fuel tank, this generator weights in heavier than the competition at 218 lbs, making it less portable, but a great workhorse for more permanent solutions.

The Powerstroke PS906811P Features:

  • 389cc OHV Engine
  • Running Watts: 6800
  • Starting Watts: 8500
  • Weight: 218 lbs
  • 8.0 Gallon Capacity Fuel Tank
  • 12 Hour Runtime @ 50% Load
  • 4-120V outlets (Household Style Outlets)
  • 1- 240V twist-lock outlet
  • Sound Level: 79 Decibels From 23 Feet Away

Keep your investment protected with the 3-year limited warranty provided and enjoy United States Of America engineering and assembly.

Pros

Pros
  • More than 5000 watts available when you need it
  • Large Fuel Tank
  • Low Oil Shut Down
  • Automatic Voltage Regulator

Cons

Cons
    • Heavier Than Most
Customer Reviews: Another underperformer in the customer reviews on Amazon, the Powerstroke managed to get 3 reviews for a total of a 4 out of 5 stars – at the time of publishing this post.

This does not surprise me as this generator seems like a solid choice.I am sure with more time; this generator will make its way up into the competitive space in review count.

IMHO: In My Humble Opinion
The Powerstroke is a great solution for large work sites or for using as a home back up. With the heavier weight and large power capabilities, this is the generator I would suggest using as a more permanent rather than temporary situation to prevent having to move the larger unit constantly.

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6. Generac 5939 GP5500 – A Hit Or Miss 5000W Generator

The Generac 5939 GP5500 generator does not have the best reputation between a slew of negative reviews regarding noise levels and broken parts

However, it made our list as a contender due to its competitive features.

The Generac powers 5500 running watts/6875 starting watts with a run time of up to 10 hours at 50% load. While this is not an impressive number compared to others on this list, it is not the lowest.

The large 389cc engine and 7.2-gallon fuel tank help bring this generator to a light weight of 180 lbs, one of the lowest numbers on this list.

This generator is ideal for power tools, campsites, home backup, and small job sites. One specific drawback is that it is not CARB or CSA compliant making it not legal for shipping to California.

The Generac 5939 GP5500 Features:

  • 389cc OHV Engine
  • Running Watts: 5500
  • Starting Watts: 6875
  • Weight: 180 lbs
  • 7.2 Gallon Capacity Fuel Tank
  • 10 Hour Runtime @ 50% Load
  • 4-120V outlets
  • 1- 240V twist-lock outlet
  • Sound Level: Not Provided
  • Recoil Style Start

The Generac 5939 GP5500 is backed by a 2-year limited warranty to protect your investment.

Pros

Pros
  • Light Weight
  • 7.2 Gallon Fuel Tank
  • Great For Campsites,Power Tools, Etc
  • Low Oil Shut Down

Cons

Cons
    • Louder Than Most
    • Not CARB Or CSA Compliant
    • Some Negative Buyer Reviews
Customer Reviews: The Generac 5939 received the lowest rating, coming in at a 3.6 out of 5 with 93 reviews. The negative reviews seem to be similar in nature, suggesting the Generac has a few kinks to work out.

IMHO: In My Humble Opinion
The Generac 5939 GP5500 seems like a very good 5,000 WATT generator on paper, however, with the many negative reviews that seem to coincide with similar problems, I would have to suggest one of the other 5 on this list before considering this generator an option.

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Buying Guide – Frequently Asked Questions

What is the quietest 5000 Watt generator?

Generator noise level is measured in decibels from 23 feet away. For this list, it is a tie between the Westington and the Pulstar generators, with both of them producing 72 decibels from 23 feet.

An important note to remember when thinking about noise levels is where the generator will be replaced.

A more powerful, louder generator may be suitable for a job site where noise isn’t as important.

If using in a residential setting, a quieter generator may be better suited.

What is “starting” and “running” watts?

This is a very common question when dealing with generators.

Let’s start off by defining a watt to help better understand starting and running watts.

A watt is a unit of measure that describes the rate at which energy is used,

or produced, or moved from one place to another.

Starting watts are the watts required to get the generator going from a static position. Starting a motor requires more work than keeping it running so most generators have a high rating for starting watts.

Running watts are the watts required to keep the generator going.

Keeping the motor running requires less work than starting the generator, so the ratings of running watts are usually lower than the starting watts.

Can it run this or that appliance?

In order to find out which generator will run what appliance, you must first determine which appliances you will need to power and how many watts they require.

We have taken out most of the guesswork for you and have put together a quick and easy calculator to ease the process – https://generatorgrid.com/calculator/

Safety tips and precautions when using a generator

  • Never operate a generator indoors.
  • When running, the generator should be at least 15 feet away from any open windows or doors.
  • Don’t run a generator when it’s raining.
  • Turn the generator off and let the engine cool before refueling.
  • If using an extension cord, make sure it is heavy duty and in good condition.
  • Install a transfer switch to power hardwired appliances safely.

Conclusion – About This Guide

There you have it. I hope this quick buyers guide for the best 5000-watt generators has helped you in becoming more educated about some of the most popular (and unpopular) generators available to help make a decision on your investment.

Having a generator as a backup power source can make or break your next power outage at your home.

It is always better to be prepared especially in the harsh winter months where being snowed in with no power could be dangerous.

Having a generator as an emergency power source can keep your important appliances running until your power is restored.

With the great warranties offered with the above generators, protecting your investment is easy. Keeping up with the maintenance is key to preserving your generator, so remember to keep up with preventative maintenance.

Have you ever owned a 5000-watt generator? What features do you look at when shopping for a generator?

Please consider sharing this post with anyone you know who might be in the market for a portable generator!

If you were looking for a more transportable solution, please see my list for the best portable generators

Last update on 2020-12-04 Affiliate links & images from Amazon Product Advertising API

2 comments

  1. I need one before the hurricanes start blowing in. Need to know which one would do what I need. I need my refrigerator and freezer, a couple of fans and my cpap to run that is it.TV would be great, but not necessary. please help.

  2. I need a 5000 or 5500 quite generator for my food trailer I don’t know which quite generator is the best cN you help me

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