If you’ve ever been kept awake at night by the sound of a generator working away, you will understand the need for finding the best quiet generator! Whether it’s for a campsite or a worksite, a quiet generator is certainly an incredibly useful device to have. And to help you pick the best one possible, I’ve created a list of, in my opinion, the top quiet generators on the market.
- Best Quiet Generators: Our Top Picks
- 1. WEN 56200i Super Quiet 2000 Watt Portable Generator
- 2. Briggs & Stratton 30651 With Quiet Power Technology and Parallel Capability
- 3. DuroStar DS4000S Gas Powered Portable Generator
- 4. Honda EU2200i
- 5. Champion 4000
- 6. Generac iQ2000
- 7. SunBoxLabs 500
- 8. Yamaha EF2000iSv2
- 9. Westinghouse iGen1200
- 10. Honda EU3000iS
- 11. Jackery 240Wh
- Why The Need For Quiet Portable Generators?
- 2 Types of a Quiet Portable Generator
- For Quiet Operation An Inverter Generator Wins The Day
- What's The Quietest Generator & Our #1 Pick?
Best Quiet Generators: Our Top Picks
1. WEN 56200i Super Quiet 2000 Watt Portable Generator
If you are looking for the quietest portable generator that produces clean and reliable energy without breaking the bank, the WEN 56200i Portable Inverter Generator deserves a good hard look.
One of the quietest portable generators in its class, the WEN 56200I is designed for portability, weighing only 48lbs, and fitted with a convenient carrying handle.
It comes with all the advanced features for a very quiet, efficient, and durable operation. The starting wattage is 2000, and the running wattage is 1600, which, from my experience, is enough to keep your basic appliances running without any difficulties.
- Provides clean and safe energy devoid of harmful fluctuations.
- Low-oil and low-fuel automatic shutdown
- CARB compliant
- Difficult to refill engine oil.
The Wen 56200i is a portable generator that’s one of the quietest available, carb compliant to boot, and one of my very favorite generators.
- Dimensions: 18" x 11" x 18" | Weight: 48 lbs
- Noise Level: 53 dB operation
2. Briggs & Stratton 30651 With Quiet Power Technology and Parallel Capability
The Briggs & Stratton 30651 is quiet and has excellent fuel efficiency for a portable generator with an OHV engine. It produces 1,700 running watts and has a run time of 8 hours at 25% load.
It produces clean and safe energy so that you can charge electronics such as laptops, phones, tablets, and more. It’s lightweight and portable so that you can carry it with you to a variety of outdoor activities and job sites.
What I also love about this generator is that it’s also parallel ready, so you can connect it with a second generator and produce twice the power. The starting wattage is 2200, and the running wattage 1700.
- Clean and stable energy
- Very quiet portable at 59 dB
- Fuel efficient
- Not CARB compliant
- 1,700 Watts might be insufficient for some uses
The Briggs & Stratton 30651 Portable Generator provides clean and stable power so you can charge sensitive electronics. It is also very fuel-efficient, although its running wattage doesn’t look overly impressive, in my honest opinion.
- Quiet and fuel-efficient 111 cc OHV engine produces 2,200 starting watts and 1700 running watts
- USB port allows charging of portable electronics to stay connected. Muffler: Super Lo-tone. Start type: Recoil
3. DuroStar DS4000S Gas Powered Portable Generator
Conventional generators like the Durostar DS4000S are usually loud. Not in this case, though. For this design, Durostar has fitted a super quiet muffler and raised the motor mounts with rubber seating, isolating the motor and lowering the sound level.
These two features make it possible for the generator to run at a 69 dBA sound rating. This is about the same noise level as a regular dishwasher and therefore can allow you to converse naturally in its vicinity.
And yes, I know that it might not be the quietest portable generator. Still, considering its efficiency, it is relatively silent. The starting wattage is 4000, and the running wattage is 3300, which I find really impressive, especially at this sound rating.
- Easy to assemble and use
- Excellent value
- Rugged build
- Durable and easy to maintain
- It can handle heavy loads and high amperage power tools
- No 240V or DC output power
- Oil fill is difficult to access.
- No watt or amp meter
The Durostar DS4000S Portable Generator is a rugged workhorse designed to offer you and your family uninterrupted energy in emergencies at the lowest noise possible.
- Plenty of Power – With 4,000 peak watts and 3,300 running watts, this unit can handle heavy loads, from lights and a refrigerator to a home air conditioner and high amperage power tools
- Powerful Engine – The DuroStar 208cc OHV engine is a workhorse that provides plenty of power to handle multiple jobs, from powering high voltage appliances to heavy duty power tools
- Low Oil Shutoff – Protects your investment by automatically shutting the generator off when it senses that the oil is low
- Power Panel – The power panel includes a selection of outlets for maximum compatibility in your applications including: 2 120V household outlets and 1 120V 30A twist lock outlet. The panel also...
- Complies with Emissions Standards – All DuroStar generators are both approved by the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) and CARB (California Air Resources Board) and follow strict guidelines to...
4. Honda EU2200i
The Honda EU 2200i is not only one of the top-rated backup generators globally, but it’s also right up there on my list of the best quietest generators. This generator operates at 53-59 dBA, making it ideal for camping, as an RV backup energy source, and other activities that require an unobtrusive energy supply.
What I also like about the Honda EU2200i is its compact and lightweight design. It weighs about 46 pounds and can conveniently fit in the family car for a camping trip. The convenient carrying handle makes the generator highly portable.
As for fuel consumption, the Honda EU2200i is impressively fuel-efficient, running for up to 8.1 hours on a single fuel tank. This generator also features Honda’s advanced inverter technology, allowing it to deliver clean, stable energy without destructive fluctuations.
Another great feature is that you can add another Honda EU2200i to double your energy output, thanks to the generator’s parallel capability. The starting wattage is 2000, and the running wattage is 1800.
- Exceptionally lightweight and portable
- Runs quietly
- Easy to use
- Fuel efficient
- Expensive compared to competitors
- Not CARB compliant
Overall, the Honda EU 22000i is one of the quietest portable generators you can find on the market today. The starting watts are 2000, and the running watts are 1800.
- Honda's inverter technology means stable, clean power in a smaller, lighter package. The precision of Honda's inverter technology ensures our inverter generators produce reliable power
5. Champion 4000
The Champion 4000 may not be the quietest power generator on this list, but it’s still one of my favorites. What I love about it is how powerful it is. It can power up all the important household appliances, making it an excellent choice for a backup energy source during outages.
This generator features an open-frame inverted design that produces 64 dB, meaning it shouldn’t affect ongoing activities nearby. Another great feature I find incredibly useful is the quick touch panel, which allows easy access to controls.
On top of that, the Champion 4000 is fuel-efficient, coming with an ‘economy option’ to monitor energy consumption in real-time and reduce electrical load. Reduced electrical load makes the engine idle lower, promoting quieter operation, better fuel economy, and extended engine life.
- 224cc engine with a starting wattage of 4000 watts delivers enough energy for outdoor camping, RVs, and a home backup power source
- Low noise levels
- Long runtime of up to 12 hours at 50%
- Highly portable, thanks to wheels and handle
- Competitively priced
- The power panel includes a selection of outlets for maximum compatibility in your applications, including 2 120V household outlets and 1 120V 30A twist-lock outlet
- It has a pull-start function instead of a push-to-start button
Overall, the Champion 4000 is a very powerful yet quiet power generator that works great both as an emergency power output and an RV generator for camping needs.
- Advanced Open Frame Inverter Design: 50% quieter and 20% lighter than a traditional Champion 3500-watt generator, plus our Economy Mode feature saves fuel and extends engine life
- Quiet Technology and Extended Run Time: 64 dBA is great for RVs, tailgating, your next project or home backup, with 4000 starting watts and 3500 running watts for up to 17 hours run time on gasoline
- Clean electricity for sensitive electronics: RV Ready with a 120V 30A RV, plus two 120V 20A household outlets with clean power (less than 3% THD) and 12V DC outlet with dual USB adapter
- Parallel Ready: Increase your power output by connecting up to two 2800-watt or higher inverter or digital hybrid with the optional Parallel Kit
- Champion Support: Includes 3-year limited warranty with FREE lifetime technical support from dedicated experts
6. Generac iQ2000
The Generac iQ2000 is one of the most silent inverter generators available on the market. It’s quiet, lightweight, affordable, and comes with a long-running time. Its noise rating stands at 53dV with a 25% load, which makes it practically unnoticeable in some environments.
However, what I find most impressive is its runtime of at least nine hours. This, combined with a maximum energy output of 2,00 watts, makes it a great portable generator for camping and job sites. It’s also incredibly fuel-efficient, with one gallon delivering up to nine hours of running time.
Another remarkable feature of the iQ2000 I love is the EasyStart technology that includes a pull start and conveniently located knobs for easy control. The generator’s sleek LED display allows for easy monitoring, and you can easily switch between three modes: standard, economy, and turbo.
The iQ2000 also comes with a parallel kit, allowing you to add another iQ2000 to work with the one you’re currently using. This feature comes in handy when you need more energy for your project or outdoor activity, and it also helps you achieve even more runtime.
- Smart LED dashboard for easy monitoring and control
- Operates with high efficiency
- Smooth carriage
- Compact design for easy storage
- Easy to clean and maintain
- Affordably priced
- Can power only one big device at a time
Overall, the Generac iQ2000 is an excellent investment if you want a powerful and truly silent generator. This portable inverter generator offers a mix of compact design, performance, and affordability, making it one of the quieter generators out there.
- AC rated output(running/starting): 1600/2000 running watts; AC rated voltage: 120V
- PowerDial integrates start/run/stop functions into 1 easy-to-use dial
SunBoxLabs solar power generators are silent and gas-free. What sets them apart from the competition is a solar panel and all the cables needed to power your devices.
The SunBoxLabs 500 comes with one solar panel, a portable battery, two cables, and eight zip ties. I found the flexible solar panel easy to carry around, and it’s ideal for outdoor activities such as camping, job sites, and RV use.
You can also use it to power small devices at home, including a TV, mini-fridge, and small microwave. This solar generator features two AC plugs, four USB ports, and three DC outlets, allowing you to power your devices conveniently.
You can use the SunBoxLabs 500 during an outage, allowing everyone to plug in it. The multiple lines of DC power will come in handy if you’re running industrial fans or heaters. Another remarkable feature of this kit is the battery level indicator, which lets you know how many hours of energy you have left.
- Easy to install
- Solar panel and all essential connectors
- Runs indoors
- No gasoline needed
- Completely silent
- No carbon dioxide emissions
- Competitively priced
- Free shipping
- Can’t run large appliances like full-size refrigerators or air conditioner units
- More expensive than a gasoline generator before you factor in fuel consumption
Overall, the SunBoxLabs 500 solar generator kit is an excellent option if you’re looking for a completely silent generator that you can run indoors without worrying about harmful emissions. This solar generator is perfect for camping, RV use, and other outdoor activities. It’s lightweight, highly portable, and incredibly easy to install.
8. Yamaha EF2000iSv2
If you’re looking for a nearly soundless generator with an attractive design, consider the Yamaha EF2000iSV2. Yamaha generator features a retro-inspired design that I absolutely love. In my opinion, it’s one of the best-looking generators I’ve ever had the pleasure to use. Its performance doesn’t disappoint either.
Its compact and lightweight design and the carry handle make it the quietest portable generator available on the market with such features. It comes with a muffler and sparks arrestor, and its rated dB level is only 61 dB and only 51.5 dB at a 25% load.
The EF2000iSv2 has a 1.1-gallon fuel tank capacity, which I believe can be considered a downside. Still, thanks to the smart throttle enhancing its fuel efficiency, you can expect to get a run time of impressive 10.5 hours at a 25% load. Another remarkable feature I like is the fuel gauge that helps you know how much energy you have left before you need to refill.
- CARB compliant
- Beautiful retro-inspired design
- Muffler for quiet operation
- Fuel gauge
- 3-year warranty
- Smaller fuel tank capacity
- It uses a pull start instead of an electric start
The Yamaha EF2000iSv2 is a reliable, quiet inverter generator that ranks high in design, performance, fuel efficiency, and noise level. This 2000-watt generator is excellent for powering appliances at home, job sites, and camping trips.
- 1600 watt rated AC output, 2000 watt maximum AC output, 13.3/16.7 amps @ 120V
- Super-quiet muffler with USFS-approved spark arrestor - 51.5 dBA at 1/4 load
- Inverter system with Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) control
9. Westinghouse iGen1200
The Westinghouse iGen 1200 is a budget-friendly, portable generator ideal for home use as an emergency backup during an outage. I found it strong enough to run most household essentials with a 1000-watt rating and 1200 peak watts.
The iGen1200 also boasts a low noise level, thanks to a double-insulated acoustic enclosure and mufflers. It has a rating of 58 dB at a 25% load. It is also impressively fuel-efficient, delivering up to nine hours of run time on a 0.8-gallon fuel tank. This generator also features an economy mode to optimize fuel efficiency.
Another feature that sets the iGen1200 apart is its weight. It weighs only 35 pounds and has a convenient handle, making it incredibly easy to transport. The generator comes with two 120-volt 20-amp outlets.
- 3-year warranty and lifetime technical support
- Less power
- A little noisier
Westinghouse generators are known for their reliability and high-level performance, and the iGen1200 model is not an exception. Despite being a quiet portable generator, iGen1200 can deliver plenty of energy, allowing you to run all your household essentials.
- 1000 Rated Watts and 1200 Peak Watts at Less Than 3% THD – Weighs Only 33 Lbs. – Gas Powered – Two 120V 20 Amp Outlets
- Great Choice for Home Use as an Emergency Backup in a Power Outage – Strong Enough to Run Most Home Essentials
- Extremely Quiet, Extremely Fuel Efficient: As Low as 52 dBA Noise Output and Up to 9 Hours of Run Time on a 0. 8 Gallon Gas Tank – Features “Economy Mode” for Maximum Fuel Efficiency
- Parallel Capable - Combine Your iGen1200 with the Westinghouse WH2200iXLT, iGen1200, iGen2200, and iGen2500 to Increase Available Wattage and Amperage (Requires Westinghouse Parallel Cord)
- All Westinghouse Portable Generators are Functionally Tested in the Factory and May Contain Minimum Residual Oil and/or Fuel Odor; EPA and CARB Compliant; Backed by 3-Year Limited Service, Labor, and...
10. Honda EU3000iS
The Honda EU3000iS is another powerful, silent Honda inverter generator. Boasting a quiet range of 49-58 dB, the noise level is so low that, as I found myself, it won’t interfere with a normal conversation nearby.
The EU3000iS is a fuel-efficient generator, delivering up to 20 hours of run time on 3.4 gallons of fuel. It also features an eco-throttle mode that helps enhance fuel efficiency. The generator starts with a quick pull, offering a reliable energy source for your household or campsite.
What I dislike a bit about his 2800-watt generator is its weight of about 150 pounds with fuel on board. That means it may not be an excellent choice if you plan to move the generator often. Other than that, I have nothing but high praise for Honda’s work.
- Fuel efficient
- Low dBA output
- Inverter power is safe for electronics
- No USB ports
- Delivery without fuel
- Very heavy, affecting portability
Honda inverter generators are one of the best in the industry, and the EU3000iS model proves that. It’s a quiet but relatively powerful generator with good fuel efficiency and some cool features. The only thing I dislike about it is its heavy weight, which makes it less than ideal for some uses.
- 3,000W peak and 2,800W continuous rated power at 120VAC; 144W at 12VDC
- Inverter technology for clean power output suitable for computers and electronic equipment
- Meets CARB compliance for low emissions
11. Jackery 240Wh
There are silent generators, and there’s the Jackery 240Wh. If you’re looking for the quietest possible RV power station, then this generator is an excellent investment.
Besides being one of the quietest generators, it is also one of the lightest. It weighs only 6.6 pounds, making it easy to transport, and its solid handle makes it easy to carry and use everywhere.
The power generator features a 110V/200W AC outlet, making it ideal for running small household appliances and charging laptops and other small devices.
It also comes with two 2.4A USB ports, a 12-volt DC outlet to power more devices such as phones, lights, and a mini cooler with a pure sine wave inverter. The unit features a handy LED display on the front that shows you the remaining energy and the active outputs or inputs.
With a built-in MPPT controller, this power station can get the maximum recharging efficiency with the Solar Saga 60-watt solar panel to deliver eco-friendly, clean power. However, you’ll need to buy the solar panel separately, which I think is a bit too much.
- Sturdy construction
- Eco-friendly, clean power
- Easy recharging, thanks to an efficient solar panel
- Highly portable
- High-capacity lithium-ion battery
- User-friendly with an intuitive LCD
- Runs quietly with zero fume emissions
- Dual fuel options of battery and solar panel
- AC outlet can only power devices less than 200 watts
- Battery takes time to recharge
- Delivery doesn't include a solar panel
The Jackery 240Wh is a fantastic choice for those looking for a quiet, portable, eco-friendly generator to power their small devices at home or on a camping trip. I wouldn’t recommend it if you require more power, though.
- The Jackery Explorer 240 portable power station has been featured as the “Best Portable Power Station for use in the outdoors” by Digital Trends
- Pure sine wave AC outlet (110V 200W 400W Peak), two USB-A ports (5V, 2.4A), and one 12V DC carport to charge your road trip essentials such as smartphones and laptops
How is the noise level for a generator calculated?
Most generator manufacturers calculate noise levels at 100% load operation measured seven meters away. The best way to understand a generator’s loudness based on its dBA rating is to look at the relative noise level of everyday sounds.
Two people talking about seven meters away from you would translate to about 60 dBA. Anything below 60 dBA qualifies as whisper-quiet. Other common sounds include:
- Music in a living room: 76 dBA
- Car horn: 90-105 dBA
- Vacuum cleaner: 70 dBA
What is the quietest generator on the market?
You have a wide range of options if you are looking for the quietest generator on the market. However, arguably the quietest generator is the Honda EU2220i, producing 53 decibels of sound at a 25% load.
However, for me, the number one spot goes to the WEN 56200I. I’ve tested numerous portable generators, and this one is by far my favorite. Generally speaking, though, any generator on this list is an excellent investment.
Why are Honda generators so quiet?
Honda holds a reputation for making some of the quietest generators on the market. One reason they’re so quiet is that they have a fully enclosed body.
Some Honda generators also come with a muffler to reduce the noise levels further. Depending on the material used, a muffler can reduce your generator noise level by at least 10 decibels.
What is the best cheap option?
If you’re looking for a generator on a budget, you can find some models at significantly less than $500. The A-iPower SUA2000iV is one of the most affordable and reliable cheap inverter generators you can find on the market today.
Which quiet Generator is best for RVing and camping?
I think it goes without saying that you need a super quiet generator for camping and RV use, and you can’t go wrong with the Yamaha EF1000iS Inverter Generator. This generator is one of the lightest and quietest camping generators available on the market today. It weighs about 12.7 kg, making it easy to transport.
Can I use a muffler to quiet a generator?
Yes. You can use an automotive muffler to reduce the noise level of your portable generator. Although it’s a complicated procedure, it can reduce the noise levels by 10 to 15 decibels when done correctly. I’d recommend finding a professional to help you install the automotive muffler.
Why The Need For Quiet Portable Generators?
Imagine that you have finally arrived at your destination and located the best site for setting up camp. Tired from the long drive, you decide to take a short refreshing nap and utterly relaxed amidst the soothing sounds of a nearby running brook, the harmonious chirping of happy birds, and the gentle rustle of wind through trees, slip into a deep sleep.
But not for long.
You are startled awake by what sounded like a thousand-strong hell’s angel motorbikes. You dash outside to see another camper has set up close to you, and the roar of their portable generator had shattered the peace and tranquillity of the perfect campsite. And with it, your dream of an idyllic vacation in the pristine “great” outdoors. This is where quiet portable generators come in, providing the needed power output without ruining your experience with all the noise pollution.
2 Types of a Quiet Portable Generator
Portable generators are useful equipment that provides an alternate power supply source for use while camping, tailgating, working on outdoor projects, construction sites, and emergency backup power.
The two types of portable generators are:
- conventional portable generators and
- inverter portable generators
These are differentiated by the way they produce the desired electric power. They come in different sizes and power ratings to suit a range of uses.
Conventional Portable Generators
Like all rotating mechanical devices powered by an internal combustion engine, portable generators produce sound while running. The sound is measured in decibels and can range from a humming 45dB to a thundering, painfully loud 120dB or more.
Noise is basically unwanted sound, and no sound is as undesirable as the rumble of a loud portable generator, especially if coming from a neighbor or a fellow camper.
Thankfully, with rapid advances in technology, portable generators are now running quieter.
It’s a fact that inverter generators are several decibels quieter than the quietest conventional generator. This is partly due to their compact design and smaller engines, which minimizes the output noise level. Through the use of complex electronics, they can also vary in engine speed with a change in load demand - throttling back the engine speed with a reduced load which reduces the noise further (unlike a conventional generator which runs at a steady 3600RPM no matter the load).
Another noise reduction feature lies in the use of noise-absorbing materials in the design of inverter generators. A typical noise level for a portable inverter generator (like this one) ranges from a whisper-quiet 45dB to a below-normal-conversation 56dB at half load. This sound level is quite comfortable and will let you appreciate the calming natural sounds at a campsite or carry out a normal conversation a few feet away without yelling like a pumped-up drill Sergeant.
For Quiet Operation An Inverter Generator Wins The Day
If you are looking for a generator that
- will run through the night without disturbing your sleep or your neighbors
- take along to power your RV in the untouched and peaceful great outdoors
an inverter generator is going to be your best option.
However, suppose pricing and having a lot of power output is a significant consideration for you. In that case, inverter generators might not be ideal because their power output is somewhat limited- and they can be expensive.
Sometimes it doesn’t matter what noise the generator makes, but if you are using it for camping or right next to your bedroom window, you will want to invest in a noiseless generator.
What's The Quietest Generator & Our #1 Pick?
When it comes to super quiet running, the WEN 56200i wins the day - hands down! It’s also compact and lightweight, ideal for camping and RV use, environmentally friendly (crucial these days), and can run all your sensitive electronic devices. A great outdoors companion and one of the quietest generators I’ve ever used!
- Dimensions: 18" x 11" x 18" | Weight: 48 lbs
- Noise Level: 53 dB operation
- EPA III and CARB Compliant 79.7 cc 4-stroke OHV engine produces 2000 surge watts and 1600 rated watts
- Great for campgrounds, construction sites, tailgates and power outages
- Produces clean power to safely operate and prevent damage to sensitive electronics such as phones, tablets, televisions and computers