GeneratorGrid.com is an independent review business. I am not affiliated with any manufacturers and do not accept paid reviews. When you buy through my links, I may earn a commission which helps me purchase more generators for testing. - Scott Krager
Last Updated on March 23, 2023 by Rod Olivares
Update 2021: I would recommend the newer Wen 56203i vs the 56200i – it has 100 more watts of power and is nearly 10 lbs lighter, but only a few dollars more! The 56203i is my best budget pick for a quiet 2,000-watt range generator. See my full review of the 56203i here.
The WEN 56200i 2000-Watt Portable Inverter Generator is a nearly silent generator.
The generator produces clean energy (1,600 watts rated, 2,000 watts surge) that does not have any voltage fluctuations.
The best part of the WEN 56200i is that it does not create all the noise of a regular operating generator. In fact, the WEN 56200i is one of the quietest generators. But is it reliable?
The generator is equipped with a 4-stroke 79.7 cc engine that is extremely quiet and produces just 51 decibels of sound when operating at 25% load capacity and 55 decibels at 75% load capacity.
The 56200i is so silent that the noise it generates has been compared by the US Department of Health and Human Services to a regular human conversation.
The silent operation makes the WEN 56200i ideal for outdoor use when you are camping or hunting, etc. The generator is also EPA III and CARB compliant, which produces clean environment-friendly energy.
The WEN 56200i is an excellent generator that replicates a pure sine wave and limits the harmonic distortion to less than 0.3% when there is no load and to less than 1.2% at full capacity, making it ideal to run your delicate electronic devices, such as computers, tablets, laptops, and mobile phones.
Main Features & Specifications
The generator comes with a USB port and other outlets to connect your devices. The unit is very lightweight, weighing around just 48 lbs, making it extremely portable, too.
Featuring an eco-mode, this generator allows the motor to adjust the fuel consumption automatically as you plug and unplug electronic appliances and devices into the panel and this helps to regulate the consumption of fuel.
This also helps to maximize the fuel economy of the unit. The 1-gallon tank of the generator allows 4 hours of runtime at full capacity and 6 hours at 50% load.
If you need more energy, you can connect two WEN 56200i generators easily by using the WEN parallel connection kit and sharing the wattage between different units.
The generator is equipped with a low-oil indicator and automatic shutdown when the unit is low on fuel.
It also features overload protection to safeguard the generator as well as the electronics from any damage.
The WEN 56200i is backed by a 2-year warranty, and you can contact the consumer helpline or their network of service specialists as needed.
You can view the WEN 56200i manual here.
- Dimensions: 18” x 11” x 18”
- Weight: 48 lbs
- Sine wave technology for pure, safe power
- 4-stroke, 79.7 cc OHV engine
- Max output: 2000 watts
- Running output: 1600 watts
- Low oil level indicator, automatic low oil shutdown
- Comes with 5 volts USB port, 12 volts DC port, and 3-prong 120V receptacles (2 nos.)
- EPA III and CARB compliant
- Comes with a 2-year warranty
Pros & Cons
- Provides clean and safe energy without any fluctuations that could harm your delicate electronic devices (laptops, mobile phones, etc.)
- Super-quiet operation
- Can be used for outdoor purposes like tailgating, camping, at construction sites, etc.
- Fuel-efficient generator
- Lightweight and portable, convenient to carry wherever you go
- Excellent customer support
- Some users found pouring oil into the generator quite difficult
Wen 56200i vs. Honda EU2000I Comparison
About the Honda
Honda is renowned for manufacturing some of the best engines in the world and has been manufacturing generators for just as long as they have made cars, though this may not be a very well-known fact.
The Honda EU2000I is an exceptionally high-quality generator and is quite a workhorse.
The Honda EU2000I has a large 98.5 cc engine, which makes it capable of handling larger loads of over 1,000 watts and a bigger start-up load without getting overloaded.
The generator can handle 1,600 watts of continuous load and 2,000 watts of surge load.
In terms of runtime, the Honda EU2000I can run up to 8.1 hours at 25% load capacity and 3.4 hours at full load on 1 gallon (45 lbs) of fuel.
The generator is equipped with the Eco-Throttle feature, which allows the engine to regulate its speed as per the load, which enables the generator to maximize its fuel efficiency.
The 12 volts DC output produced by the Honda EU2000I is not regulated, and you may need to use a 120V charger.
You can also pair the Honda EU2000I with another generator to increase the power output, although this requires a separate adapter to do so.
The Honda EU2000I is fairly quiet when running and produces around 53 decibels of sound in economy mode and 59 decibels at full output, which is still a bit louder than Wen’s 56200I.
Coming in at just 45 lbs, the EU2000I’s ergonomic shape and top handle make it convenient to carry. In fact, the Honda EU2000I is the lightest portable generator.
The Honda EU2000I comes with a 3-year warranty, has a sturdy build, and boasts a solid reputation to match. You have a large network of service centers to repair your Honda generator or get spare parts in case of any defects. This is especially beneficial if you’re camping outdoors or traveling in your RV in remote areas.
The Honda EU2000I is one of the top-selling generators. In terms of price, it is the most expensive, too, and almost twice the price of the Wen 56200i.
Compared to Wen’s Generator
In terms of performance, the Wen 56200i has the same capability as the Honda EU2000I. It has the same 1,600-watt continuous output and, 2000-watt surge output. And just like the Honda EU2000I, the Wen 56200i also can be linked in parallel with another unit to increase the power.
The Wen 56200i offers many power options: 12V DC port, 2 Nos. 12V AC ports, and a 5V USB port; plus, it is more flexible than the Honda EU2000I. In terms of the power output, the Wen 56200i produces clean power without any surges, which keeps all your sensitive devices and appliances, like laptops, computers, and mobile phones, safe.
Compared to the Honda EU2000I, the Wen 56200i has a shorter runtime, 6 hours at 25% load capacity. Also, it has the smallest engine, which means that in terms of fuel usage, it is the least efficient. The Wen 56200i also features an Eco mode; however, it cannot handle any load above 1,000 watts in the economy mode and reverts to working in the standard mode if the load is more than 1,000 watts.
In terms of noise, as we mentioned earlier, the Wen 56200i is less noisy than the Honda EU2000I and produces only 51 decibels of sound when operating at 25% load capacity and 55 decibels at 75% load capacity.
The Wen 56200i is also quite ergonomic in shape, which makes it easy to carry. However, at 48 lbs, the Wen is heavier than the Honda EU2000I.
The Wen 56200i has a 2-year warranty on the parts and a network of service centers nationwide.
Also, Wen will require you to either send the generator to their service center or they will send you the parts. However, the network is not as widespread as Honda’s service network.
The Wen 56200i is a comparatively cheaper option when compared to the Honda EU2000I. Nevertheless, it is an extremely reliable generator with features that can rival the more expensive generator models.
Online Customer Reviews & Ratings
At the time of publishing this post, of the 460 reviews of the Wen 56200i on Amazon.com, 73% of the customers were extremely happy and satisfied with the generator and have given the product a 5-star rating, giving the Wen 56200i an overall rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
Most customers are very happy with the quality of the product, and many users claim that the generator started every time without any hassles, even if the weather was very cold.
In fact, one customer claimed that even after a year, the Wen 56200i starts up without any problem and runs great every time–so much so, that the user has not used his other generator for more than a year.
The other aspect of the Wen 56200i that has given it a high rating is its extremely silent operation.
One user claims that you cannot hear the generator running even when you’re 50 feet away. Users are very satisfied with the performance, flexibility, and clean power of the Wen 56200i.
Buyers state that the generator is extremely easy to use, and the instruction manual is very easy to follow.
Another important factor that makes the Wen 56200i very popular among the users is that it is almost half the price of its Honda and Yamaha counterparts, indeed making it a value for the money.
Some of the drawbacks of the Wen 56200i faced by customers are that the generator does not have an oil level indicator, which would have been a very useful feature.
Also, it is very difficult to remove the side panels of the generator for regular maintenance of the unit and the plastic panels are quite flimsy.
The eco-mode of the generator works only if the load is below 1,000 watts.
Bloggers & Pro Reviewers
According to a YouTube review of the Wen 56200i, this generator is a great buy, especially for camping or boondocking. It can run all your appliances all night – your air conditioner, refrigerator, mobile phones and laptop on just a tank of gas (1 gallon), which is essentially $2 per day.
The generator is quite fuel-efficient provided the load is under 1,000 watts, and the best part about the Wen 56200i is that it is super quiet; in fact, it is much quieter than a lawnmower.
Another user stated that the Wen 56200i was a great buy for use on a sailboat and is quite durable; despite being exposed to the harsh elements, such as the sea, sun, etc., there is no wear or corrosion.
Final Words: Should You Buy It?
Overall, the Wen 56200i is a good generator and a valuable budget buy, offering features such as the 5 volts USB charger; however, the short run time and lower power output of this generator can pose an issue for users who are looking for a generator that can run all through the night.
While the Honda EU2000I is more popular because of its brand name and offers a larger service network, it is quite expensive, almost twice the cost of the Wen 56200i.
All in all, if your budget is very tight, then the Wen 56200i is a fantastic, solid buy at a good price, without making a huge dent in your savings.
Scott Krager purchased generatorgrid.com in the summer of 2020 and quickly began to buy every generator under the sun! He currently has over a dozen generators and the number is growing quickly. He lives in Portland, OR near his family and friends.
How often if ever would I be required to remove side panels ? Is adding oil more difficult than say adding oil to my outboard yamaha motor ?
i was reading the review. seems to be technicaly correct. please focus on to reliability 7 out of 10. so what if – does not start any more.
went to the wen site and there is nothing mentioned about service & maintenance places.
what is your plan in case of generator is not starting any more ?
have a nice day
One quick question. Do you HAVE to ground the WEN if it’s used as a stand-alone and NOT directly connected to the house? What do people do when camping or tailgating?
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