Small portable generator - Image from eBay

Have you ever hosted a house party on a warm summer afternoon and then the power suddenly goes out leaving everyone in the sweltering heat and with no ice cubes or good music? Or have you ever wanted to enjoy some ice cream during your weekend at the cabin in the woods, but there was neither any electricity nor a refrigerator? Well, I have, and that feeling is such a buzzkill for my weekend. Sure, the cavemen survived just fine, but since those ages, electricity has become a vital human necessity which is why you should invest in a small portable generator for your camping trips and weekend stays at the cabin.

Thanks to technological advancements, it is now possible to find a generator that is conveniently small in size and one that is also less expensive than larger generators. In this review, we will be looking at several of these small generators, which are also drastically lighter in weight as compared to other generators in the market. I’m talking about portable generators that weight as little as 5 pounds; how convenient is that?

top 5 small portable generators

Top 5 Small Portable Generators 2018 List

  Brand Power Runtime* Recharging Dimension Weight  
 Best Pick 
155Wh ~3 hrs 7-8 hrs 7.6x6.7x3.5 inch 3.48 lbs Check Price
Rockpals 222Wh ~3 hrs 7-8 hrs 8.8x3.9x6.3 inch 5.5 lbs Check Price
 Reasonable Price 
150Wh ~3 hrs 7-8 hrs 7.3x4.3x4.7 inch 4.4 lbs Check Price
Aimtom 155Wh ~3 hrs 7-8 hrs 6.7x3.5x7.6 inch 4.6 lbs Check Price
Suaoki 220Wh ~3 hrs 7-8 hrs 9.8x6.3x3.3 inch 5.5 lbs Check Price
*To Caculate the Runtime of your electronic device: For example if you buy Webetop with 155Wh and your device power is 60 watt. Then the runtime= 155wh/60w=2.58 hrs.

#1 Webetop –  Best Small Portable Generator Overall

This portable generator from WebeTop® has a powerful wattage of 155 Watts which is quite impressive considering its small size. It measures a mere 7.67 x 6.73 x 3.54 inches and weighs just 3.48 lbs, yet it has the capability of runtime to charge electronic devices for almost 3 hrs! That’s quite impressive, which is what makes this the best small generator on our list. Still, on performance, this gadget utilizes pure sine wave, and the benefit of this is that it delivers the cleaner current that will not damage your gadgets.

Besides having a powerful power output, this small generator also features a smart design which allows you to carry it around in your backpack hardly feeling any extra weight. Its construction is top-notch, featuring a solid shell made from a lightweight aluminum alloy and this body is made strong enough to resist small impacts and falls. The last thing you want is to end up damaging your generator after exposing it to various harsh conditions during your camping trip, and this is something you never have to worry about with this WebeTop mini generator. Additionally, the generator comes with a handy built-in carrying handle to ease with mobility.

Proving to be the ultimate camping companion, this electric generator has two recharging options: plug it into a wall outlet or refuel it from the sun using a compatible solar panel. However, this unit has a high-density lithium-ion battery which uses the Battery Management System (BMS) technology, so you will not even need to charge it as often. Besides optimizing battery life, BMS also guards against over-current, over-voltage and over-temperature. Additionally, to further prolong its battery life, this generator’s 155Wh power source has been designed such that it cannot charge and recharge at the same time.

The power source is also very versatile. It comes with two AC outlets utilizing a 100W pure sine power inverter, two DC outlets including an extra cigarette socket cable, two USB ports and five LED light indicators. If your camping gear includes appliances that charge using USB, DC or AC, then they can all charge from this small, lightweight portable generator.



It has a long-lasting battery capacity of 42,000mAh

 It has a convenient size and is very lightweight

It is solar rechargeable

✓ It is gas-free and uses pure sine wave power output

A little bit expensive
  • Performance 93%
  • Design 92%
  • Price 90%

#2 Rockpals – Best Portable Generator For CPAP

Rockpals® has a reputation for making high-quality generators, and this 250-Watt one does not disappoint. With 250 Watts, you can comfortably charge up your laptop, tablet, TV, fans, and even a mini fridge and CPAP machines, which is quite impressive for such a small gadget. It measures 10 x 4 x 6 inches and weighs just 5.5 lbs, which is just what you would be looking for if you wanted to invest in a small generator that is very portable. Don’t be fooled by its deceivingly small size though; this generator uses high capacity lithium polymer batteries with an impressive life of 222 Watt-hours. This way, you can always have the generator in your car ready to use in case of an emergency.

As far as power output goes, you have the option of AC, DC and USB ports. While using AC, this unit has a continuous power output of 250W and a DC output of 12V. A tip to note is that if you intend to use this generator with CPAP devices, then using the DC-DC converter would ensure you get longer hours from the battery.

You should opt for a unity that can provide you with a variety of options, and this versatile model allows you to recharge it either by plugging it into a wall outlet or from the sun using compatible 50W or 100W solar panels. It takes 8 hours to fully charge so you can plug it in when you go to sleep, and the generator will be ready to use by morning. This generator is also a pure sine wave inverter, meaning it has a power output similar to that of utility-supplied power regarding cleanness. What this simply means is that your appliances and gadgets will charge much quieter while connected to this generator, and there will also not be any RF noise when running the TV or audio amplifiers.



It can be used to power a CPAP machine while camping

 It has a very strong, drop-tested shell that’s also fireproof

It is lightweight, small, easy to carry and easy to store

 The battery holds charge very well

It does not come with solar panels

A recharging time of 8 hours is quite long

  • Performance 91%
  • Design 90%
  • Price 90%

#3 SUAOKI – Best Budget Portable Generator

With a heavy-duty plastic shell, this portable generator from Suaoki® has a rugged look that’s quite appealing. Aesthetics aside though, this small device can shell out a lot of power and better yet, it is very affordable even for the buyer who might be on a very tight budget. The 150 Watt-hours of power essentially makes this a powerful yet tiny power bank capable of charging a wide array of appliances including cameras, drones, CPAP machines and even a small vacuum cleaner. If you need instant power on the go and utility-supplied electricity is not an option, then this is just the generator you need to have with you.

For a cost-efficient model, this generator incorporates quite some convenient technologies. One of these is the quick charge 3.0 fast charging USB port, which is even quite rare in some laptops. Another handy technology is the Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) technology which essentially fins the optimal match between the array of solar panels you might be having, and the battery bank itself. With MPPT, the generator intelligently adapts to the optimal voltage levels and recharges itself with sunlight.

Regardless of the appliances you have, if this generator can handle their capacity, then you can find a way to connect the appliance to the power station. There are two AC outlet, four 12V coaxial sockets and four USB ports. Also to further fulfill your electrical needs, this small generator comes complete with several electrical adapters and power supply options. This SUAOKI power station can be recharged in three ways: you could use a solar panel, plug it into a wall outlet or you could plug it into the car’s 12V socket.

Did I mention that this generator weight a mere 4.4 lbs? Talk about portability! Once you have experienced all that this SUAOKI generator has to offer, you are never going to want to leave it behind ever again. It is compact; it is lightweight, it is powerful, it can be a flashlight when in a pinch and best of all, this is the best budget friendly portable generator in the market.



✓ It is powerful yet budget friendly

 It has triple power supply options for recharging it

✓ It is a green gas-free portable generator

✓ It comes with plenty of cables and connectors

You have to buy the solar panels separately

It does not come with a slipcover to protect it from the elements

  • Performance 90%
  • Design 91%
  • Price 93%

#4 AIMTOM – Best Design

This AIMTOM® generator features a sleek grey and orange design complete with a built-in flashlight in case you need to see your way in the dark. Besides just looking good, the shell of this generator has been designed to withstand small knocks and impacts, so you never have to worry about the generator getting damaged when carrying it around in your bag or when you’re out camping and having a good time. When you do not want to carry it in your bag, you can easily carry it in your hand using the built-in handles and this allows you to walk around with the unit while charging your phone.

Measuring 6.70 x 3.5 x 7.6 inches and weighing just 4.6 lbs, this charging station is very compact and space-efficient so that it can easily fit in your luggage, without having to compromise on what to carry or leave behind. Despite being small and compact, it’s also incredibly powerful. It has 155 Watt-hours of power, capable of powering appliances ranging from laptops to drones and CPAP machines.

The 42000mAh battery pack uses Battery Management System (BMS) technology, which protects from short-circuiting, over-voltage, over-current and over-temperature. This prolongs the battery life and also ensures that your devices are safe while plugged into this portable generator. For solar charging, Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) technology has been used so that this gadget can intelligently optimize sunlight for recharging. Additionally, this unit comes with a built-in cooling fan to prevent overheating while charging. The fan runs super quiet, so you will not end up causing discomfort to other campers at night when everyone is asleep, and you are using the generator to power your CPAP machine.



It has multiple recharging options

 It is compact but very powerful

✓ It comes with an emergency LED flashlight

 The power station automatically shuts off if you plug in an overbearing appliance

Recharging takes quite some time ranging between 8-10 hours

The solar panel is not included

  • Performance 91%
  • Design 93%
  • Price 89%

#5 SUAOKI – best battery capacity

If an emergency comes up and you immediately need a power source, having a small portable generator could come in handy to help you perform the task at hand. The point is to invest in a reliable portable generator with consistent power output though, and this SUAOKI® might be just what you need. This generator with a built-in power inverter has a huge battery capacity of 60,000mAh capable of powering a variety of appliances including a car fridge and a fan. Besides that, this power source is impressively lightweight at just 5.5 lbs and measures a mere 9.8 x 6.3 x 3.4 inches.

Its small compact design makes it the ultimate traveling companion whenever you are out hiking or fishing, or even when you are simply at home but experiencing a power outage. The gadget is easy to carry owing to the carrying handle provided at the top, and it is also easy to store owing to the flat design. The hard shell is made from lightweight aluminum and besides reducing the weight of the generator, this shell also protects it from any manhandling that might occur when you are out in the field.

The built-in inverter produces pure sine wave which is basically cleaner current that protects against the computer crashing and noisy TV and fans caused by RF. Pure sine wave power output ensures that you can use this small power station with a wide variety of gadgets and appliances, including appliances that have delicate electronic components which can easily get damaged.

When it comes to recharging your gadget, you can do it in three ways: plug it into a wall outlet, solar charging using solar panels or plugging the generator into the 12V socket in your car. As far as power outlets go, this generator has two AC outlets, two DC outlets, and two USB ports. There are five LED light indicators, and the generator also comes with an extra cable for the cigarette socket.



The compact high-density lithium-ion battery has a high capacity

✓ It uses a Battery Management System for safety

✓ It generates clean power on the go

✓ The inverter handles overloads just fine

✘ The generator produces some noticeable noise while it is charging

There is no reset button in case of an overload. You would have to plug the generator into a wall outlet which can be inconvenient if you are out in the wilderness

  • Performance 91%
  • Design 89%
  • Price 90%

Portable Generators: Features To Compare 

small home generators buyer's guide
Lightweight and Portable

The portability of a generator is rather relative. For instance, a generator with wheels can easily be moved around by one person but lifting the same generator might be a two-person job. Tires with pneumatic tires on the base are the best because they are so much easier to move around.

Quiet Operation

Noise is often a major factor to consider when buying any appliance. No one wants to be stuck with an extremely noisy and annoying gadget so before investing in one, try to see what other users are saying about the noise level of that particular portable generator. On average, the noise produced by most portable generators ranges between 50dB and 80dB.


The price point of a portable generator varies depending on the brand, the wattage, the type of fuel used, the noise level, the generator’s features, etc. basically, the more bells and whistles a generator has, the more expensive it will be. Expect to part with anywhere between $100 and $ 1000 depending on what you are looking for in a generator.

Automatic Start

For generators that feature the automatic start function, the unit comes on immediately power goes out. There is nothing you have to do, and you do not have to be there physically either. Do you realize how convenient this would be when it comes to preventing all your food in the refrigerator from going bad during a blackout?

Multiple Outlets

Generators that have multiple plug outlets will allow you to plug multiple appliances in the generator. This lets you optimize the unit’s wattage by spreading the load.

Power Consistency

The best generators will continuously supply the maximum amount of power which you intend to draw, regardless of the load. This is an important feature because you are guaranteed that the generator will not damage your appliances which often occurs with electronics such as big TVs, computers, etc.

Differences between Small (<5lbs) and Big (>40lbs) Portable Generators

Generators weighing less than 5lbs are convenient for providing power on the go without much fuss. These generators will provide sufficient power to operate several survival appliances such as a furnace fan, lights, and a refrigerator or freezer. On the other hand, larger portable generators weighing more than 20lbs are inconvenient when it comes to mobility, but they are very efficient when it comes to wattage. 

As far as fuel consumption goes, small generators have very small tanks, and so you would need to keep refilling them every hour or so. Bigger portable generators do not have this issue though. These gadgets come with pretty large tanks, and this can be a disadvantage in the long run. Gasoline does not store very well and with prolonged storage, it could get gummy. If you are investing in larger portable generators, therefore, make sure you will use it often enough unlike the small generator which can infrequently be used depending on when the need arises.

Who Needs and Where to Use Small Generators?

You do not fully comprehend the value of investing in a portable generator until you find yourself in a situation whereby there is no power, and you desperately need electricity. If you live in a place with severe climatic conditions, then this scenario must be all too familiar. Severe climate could come with either snowstorms or hurricanes, and both are capable of causing power failure.

Severe climate aside, portable generators also come in handy for recreational purposes such as when you are camping and need to switch on your electronic bug zapper, recharge your lamp and gadgets or if you simply like waking up to a fresh cup of coffee. You may also use a small portable generator to power the small refrigerator in the hunting cabin in the woods.

If you plan on having your house remodeled, then you may need to buy a generator otherwise what will you do while your power is shut off during the duration of the remodel? Sometimes, it’s convenient to have a small generator in the home, taking solace in the fact that you have a power backup in case of a power outage and such related emergencies.

small generators benefits

Portable Generators Safety Tips

a) While it is running, do not place the generator indoors or in an enclosed space, this includes basements, garages, sheds, crawl spaces, etc. Place it outdoors, at least 15 feet from the house and also far away from vents, doors, and windows.

b) Besides taking the generator outside when running, also make sure it is placed downwind and that the engine exhaust is pointing away from occupied spaces.

c) Don’t place the running generator in the rain, unless it is properly covered and vented.

d) If you need to refuel while the portable gasoline-powered generator is running, switch it off first and allow the engine to cool off. This reduces the risk of ignition and the risk of burning yourself while refueling.

e) The best practice is to always plug in appliances directly to the generator. Should you need to use an extension cord though, ensure it heavy duty and designed for outdoor use. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for websites to earn commissions by linking to the retailer sites. All trademarks and brands mentioned in are property of their respective owners.