Last Updated on September 13, 2020
Are you in the market for a high performing 3000-watt inverter generator, but unsure how to get started?
If that describes your situation we empathize with you. Life is pretty insanely busy and when you are trying to juggle work family and that mythical social life some people get to have the last thought that is probably crossing your mind is “time to research generators.”
Even as an adult and even when it’s a product that you want, doing your homework just isn’t a lot of fun. We understand that which is exactly why we have taken the liberty of doing it for you. We dove headfirst into the world of generators because we know that you want to find the right one for your needs. Therefore, we picked up over 30 different generators, tested them, did the research, and assembled a list of our favorite ones.
|Best Overall||Honda EU3000iS||
|Briggs and Stratton||
|Best Value||Champion 75531i||
Let’s start with the very best of the best, shall we? The Honda EU3000iS is a very powerful and efficient unit that performs at a level that should satisfy even the most serious user’s needs. It is for exactly this reason that the Honda has secured itself a spot at the very top of our list.
What exactly was it that made us select this as our top pick on the list? The answer comes down to performance. Plainly put, the Honda succeeds brilliantly at every category of importance. The valve engine is clean, consistent and reliable.
A single tank is able to keep you in energy for up to twenty-four hours, it features an eco throttle component that is able to run the engine as efficiently as possible, it is designed to be lightweight and easy to transport, featuring a handle that makes bringing it from one place to another as easy as pie.
Last but certainly not least, it even runs quietly, with an enclosed motor that releases only 48 to 58 decibels of sound for quiet operation.
All sounds great, right? Well, it definitely is. If there is one concern that might eliminate this as a buying option for some potential shoppers, it is, unfortunately, the price. To put it quite frankly, the Honda doesn’t go for cheap, meaning you are going to have to be really serious about this purchase to make it worth the money.
If you believe that you have the need for a high-end generator, it really won’t get a whole lot better than this one.
Coming in second place, the Briggs and Stratton. This affordable alternative to the Honda features a mid-sized tank of one gallon that will keep your generator running for about eight hours.
It’s also relatively quiet, featuring an operating level of about 59dB operating volume, which, though not the quietest option on the list will still allow you to have conversations without interruption.
Then there are smaller but also very convenient features to appreciate and consider. The Briggs and Stratton features built-in USB ports for your electronic devices. It also limits the level of harmonic distortion for said devices to ensure that they are able to run safely.
It’s lightweight, easy to transport, and all in all, very efficient. Its biggest con is that it simply cannot live up to the extremely high-caliber features of the Honda, but hey, you probably realized that when you saw that it had come in second, right?
Coming in third and in our best for the money slot, the Champion Power Equipment 75531i. The Champion offers a high-level performance at a very affordable rate making it the best option on this list for anyone that really wants to make an economical purchase.
Technically this is not the cheapest unit on the list (though it is very close) but buyers are almost definitely going to find that the differences between the Champion and the cheapest unit make paying extra well worth it.
One of the first things that you will notice about this unit is that it has a really excellent tank size of 1.6 gallons. Though this is not the largest tank that we have seen or will see on this list, for the price it is certainly impressive enough that potential buyers should take note.
It also features an ultra quiet engine that is able to run at noise levels of 58 dBA, making it a really great choice for camping, or even for tailgating.
Further supporting the above-listed functions, the Champion manages to also be extremely portable. This portability is accomplished by a lightweight design, as well as by built-in wheels and a pull system that will help you to easily bring it wherever you need to.
Now, all of these things said, we are of course not trying to suggest that the unit is perfect. After all, there is a reason that the Champion did not find itself in our top two.
One of the things that campers or RV users, in particular, will notice is that the motor really struggles to run at higher altitudes which can be a big problem for people that are frequently traveling with their generator.
That aside, it’s a really good buy available at a really great price.
Rounding out our second to last slot, the Firman. The Firman is a good, reliable unit for certain purposes, that is also available at an affordable rate.
One of the first things that you will probably notice about this unit is that, for the price, it has a very respectable run time of about nine hours per tank—a quantity of time that should comfortably accommodate the needs of most users.
It’s also very portable, which makes it a good option for camping or RV use. The Firman achieves its high-level of portability by incorporating wheels and a pull handle that make it very simple to move from one place to another.
Indeed, there really is not anything obviously wrong with the machine. Its problems are mostly inherent to its design. This is not a top-tier generator, and is, therefore, best left handling more basic tasks, like powering a campsite.
It also doesn’t run quite as quietly as some of the other options on this list, which may prove to be an irritation for some users.
These things said, it is a fairly affordable option, though if price is your biggest buying consideration you are probably going to have even better luck with our best for the money pick.
Last and least, the Coleman. Yeah, you read that right. While the Coleman has made its way on to our list for the simple fact that it does function as an alternative to your 3000-watt generator needs, the fact does remain that there is a reason it has been placed at the bottom of our list.
Let’s start with the good news though, shall we? The good news is that it’s a pretty affordable unit. If you need a 3000-watt generator but you don’t have a lot of loot to toss around, this might be a good opportunity to fulfill that need.
Unfortunately, affordability is about the only category that this unit excels at, at least compared to the other options on this list.
The tank is small (lasting only a few hours) the machine itself runs very noisily, and the motor just isn’t efficient.
Understand of course that these things are not inherently the Coleman’s fault. It is simply a lower-tier option that people who are looking for a very basic generator might consider.
While it might be up for smaller tasks, like keeping the lights running for a little while at a campsite, you probably are not going to want to trust it with more important jobs.
It is for these reasons that the Coleman finds itself at the very bottom of our list.
Now that we have taken a look at a few high-quality buying options here are a few buying considerations that are going to help make sure that the process of making your purchase goes as smooth as humanly possible.
First up to bat, price. You probably feel like you know how to approach this particular buying consideration right? Either you play the part of the big spender and buy the most expensive (and therefore best) option that you can find, or you head to the bargain bin and get an affordable but questionable generator.
That’s how most people approach shopping: expensive products equal quality, while cheap products are sketchy. While this can sometimes be the case it absolutely does not need to be that way.
As you hopefully were able to see as you read through our reviews, some really great products can be affordable. You might even have noticed that some really expensive products aren’t even suitable for your situation.
For the best results look for the product that offers the optimal combination of value and quality.
Noisiness is a really big consideration when talking about generators. Granted, the amount of noisiness that you are willing to tolerate will depend largely on where and how you plan on using the unit. Is this for camping? An RV? Home use?
If using a generator for the purposes of camping you are probably going to favor something that runs as quietly as possible. After all, that’s the whole point of retreating into the wilderness, right? Escape from all the noise of everyday life.
In other situations, you might not mind as much if your generator happens to be a little bit noisy.
When talking about 3000-watt units you should probably expect at least a little bit of sound. Three thousand watts provides a lot of power and with that being the case it would be unreasonable not to expect a little bit of noise.
But even with that said, a good generator should be able to run smooth enough to not disturb your peace. The best part? Even affordable units are capable of running without keeping the whole neighborhood up.
You will, of course, note that there is a wide range of potential uses when it comes to the world of generators. While the 3000-watt unit makes it pretty clear that the machine is designed to power something big, that thing could still serve any number of purposes.
For example, if you are a camper you are going to want a unit that is very portable so that you can run some lights, or even keep the AC running on your RV.
Conversely, if the purposes of the unit are more stationary in nature you can free yourself up a little bit with the knowledge that you don’t have to worry so much about the unit being portable.
On the other hand, you might also inventory your needs and realize that you don’t even need a three thousand watt unit at all.
Whatever the case, the first thing that you should do before selecting your generator is to determine what you are going to be doing with it. This knowledge is a sure fit way to ensure that you are getting the very best unit for needs.
The warranty is kind of another no-brainer buying consideration, right? In certain ways, the reason for needing good warranty is pretty self-evident: free or affordable fixes and replacements.
But that’s not all that a good warranty does. While the function of a warranty is to make sure that your unit is in working order, it is also an indication of how confident a company is in its product.
When a company provides a really solid warranty (in the world of generators that means at least three years) you can be comfortable and confident in the fact that you are getting something that will hold up well over time.
Conversely, if they don’t offer a good warranty it probably means they don’t believe in what they are selling and neither should you.
How long your generator is able to run is another consideration that can completely change the unit that you decide to go with. As you almost definitely noticed in the list above, there are a wide range of options out there when it comes to how long you will be able to run your generator for.
Keep in mind that a bigger tank is not necessarily better. Not everyone is going to need to have to run their generator for twenty for hours or longer, and if you don’t need that capability, you definitely do not want to have to pay for it.
In fact, how long a generator is able to run will weigh heavily on how much the unit actually costs, so be very sure to inventory your needs honestly in regards to this consideration.
Ultimately you are probably going to want something that runs for longer than you think you need it to, but not much longer. Naturally, you are going to want to build in a margin of error for this estimation without paying top dollar for something well beyond your needs.
And that’s that. Five of the best 3000-watt inverter generators on the market. We even included a few buying considerations to help make the process go as smooth as humanly possible. But if even after all of that information you still feel like the decision before you is a tricky one you may find comfort in the fact that we did have a couple of suggestions for you.
For shoppers looking for the very best of the best there just isn’t any beating out top choice the Honda it performs at an extremely high level and it is relatively affordable both reasons why its tops our list.
Of course, if that option isn’t quite as friendly on your budget as you would lit it to be that isn’t the only option that you have got.
For the shopper that is just trying to save a few dollars we highly recommend the Champion— our best for the money pick. This unit is both high performing, and designed to keep your budget intact.
Ultimately, you’ll have to choose for yourself. We just hope that we made the process a little bit easier for you.
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Hi there! My name is Adam and I write for HealthyHandyman. I have a great passion for writing about everything related to tools, home improvement, and DIY. In my spare time, I'm either fishing, playing the guitar, or spending quality time with my beloved wife. You'll also often find me in my workshop working on some new project!