Investing in one of the best whole house generators is one action you will take and never regret because it is a wise investment. Having a well-constructed, long-term machine will give you a stable and consistent power supply for a longer period. When there is a power outage, all you have to do is just turn to your whole house generator to keep your home and your business running.
A standby whole house generator works as a backup system when there is a power outage. This is a good investment if you live in an area where there is constant blackout that goes out for normal. You will benefit a lot from whole house generators. A lot of things can cause power outages, from natural disasters to bad weather, and without electricity, a lot of our normal activities are affected. Without electricity, there is no internet, food goes bad, and so many other services are put to a halt. This puts us in an uncomfortable situation. The best whole house generators are designed to supply power for an entire home.
However, even though buying whole house generators are a necessary investment, trying to choose the best one for you on the market can be very challenging, as the whole house generators are big, industrials, and also highly sophisticated. Choosing between the many options on the market can be tasking for the average consumer. This blog post explores everything you need to know about the best whole house generators and everything you need to know before you make your purchase.
What is a standby generator (Whole House Generator)?
Depending on how big or small your house is, “whole house” is rather subjective. For instance, if your home isn’t big. Say, it has no central A/C, a small, air-cooled 8kW standby can serve your whole house. On the other hand, if you live in a 6,000 square foot home that has more than one A/C units, something around a 48k liquid-cooled generator will serve your house words, no generator on the market
Standby generators that can produce enough power that your home circuit needs is referred to as whole house generators. If your generator cannot provide power to all your house’s circuits, what you have is not a whole house generator.
Whole house generators start working automatically when power outages occur. The generator unit provide the energy you and your family need to go about your activities until power is restored. Your whole house generator also adds value to your home.
Benefits of Whole-House Generator
Whole house generators have higher quality automotive-style engine rather than the lawn-mower style on a home standby.
Larger models are liquid-cooled instead of air coolers. This helps handle the extended outage times.
Whole house generator noises are not loud and they have longer maintenance internal. They also have load Management & A/C Shedding Options. They also back up the whole house instead of the essential circuits, and they are fuel-efficient
Top Rated Whole House Generators
When you want to buy a whole house generator, you have to pay attention to specifications such as transfer switch, installation, and maintenance, fuel type, as well as a warranty period. The size of your house and the total wattage needed to power your home determines your choice. Total wattage includes Wi-Fi, refrigerator, air conditioner, furnace, etc.
Instead of spending the whole day at the stores or on the internet looking for the best whole house generators, just go through the in-depth review and information of top-rated whole house generators.
Our review and guide are based on ours and other users’ experiences from trusted websites.
|MODEL||Power Source||Engine||Voltage||watts||Amp||Noise Level (Db)|
|1. Generac 7043||Natural or liquid propane gas||G-Force||120/240||22000|
|2. Briggs & Stratton 40346||Propane-powered||Vanguard Engines||120/240||20,000||200||70|
|3. Kohler 20RESCL-100LC16/ 200SELS||Liquid Propane / Natural Gas||Kohler Command PRO||120/240||20000||100/200||69|
|4. Champion Power Equipment 100294||Natural gas||Champion 754cc OHV||120/240||14000||200||63|
|5. Generac 6729||Natural Gas/Liquid Propane||OHVI||120/240||20000||200||67|
If you are looking for a large standby home generator, the 22kW should be your choice. It is the largest in the market. It delivers all the features and functionality customers want plus MSRP which is the lowest cost per kW of any air-cooled whole house generator.
This unit supplies total coverage for every home. It also comes with tough, long-lasting, enclosures made of aluminum. It has a Rhino-coat powder-coated finish that makes it corrosion-resistant which makes it function well though all weather conditions.
It also features a self-test mode that runs for twelve minutes. The lower RPM makes the generator quiet and consumes less fuel.
It comes with a mobile link remote monitoring that monitors the status of your generator. That means, anywhere you are in the world, you can monitor your gen using a tablet, smartphone, or PC. You can access information easily. You can check the operating status and its maintenance schedule.
It comes with an authorized service dealer that allows fast and friendly assistance that is sold separately.
The engines of Generac generators are constructed and assembled in the USA. Its evolution controller comes with a multilingual LCD for monitoring battery status.
Its purpose-built, pressure-lubricated engine handles the rigors of generator use. This provides power that is reliable and does not require plenty of routine maintenance. You can never go wrong with this generator unit.
- It comes with 5-Year Limited Warranty
- The unit is engineered and constructed in the USA
- It has strong and durable all-aluminum enclosures
- It comes with mobile link remote monitoring
- It has a long-lasting extreme weather-resistant design
- This unit has a quiet self-test mode
- This unit requires frequent maintenance from an electrician
- It doesn’t have a battery
- Its warranty does not cover its spare parts
The Briggs & Stallion 40396 is constructed to be a solid backup source of power for every home and in any circumstance. This engine will deliver 20,000 watts of power in just a few seconds of a power outage. This puts your mind at rest, knowing that there is still a source of power for your home in any case of emergency.
Although not everyone will need the power it supplies, this generator can power 2 air conditioning units plus other appliances you have in your house. It comes with a 2×200 Amp transfer switch that handles the seamless switch.
The symphony power system is responsible for the operations of this generator. It works to regulate power usage to get the most of the watts. This allows your generator to power more than one high wattage devices at once without the risk of overloading.
This generator is a wise investment for people who live in the Southeastern U.S. and usually experience a power outage during the hottest months.
This engine is designed to provide enough power for your home without making too much noise. The unit is certainly noticeable from outside but you shouldn’t be able to hear the noise it makes from inside your home.
Installing this generator is very straightforward. A professional DIYer can handle it.
- Unit is relatively quiet
- The engine is highly reliable
- Installation is very easy
- It provides lots of efficient power
- The transfer switch may be too large
- The unit is heavy
3. Kohler 20RESCL-100LC16 – Best whole house generator natural gas
Kohler is a popular name when it comes to home power and cooling appliances and Kohler 20RESCL is a good one from this manufacturer. It can perform more than portable generators. It has enough power to run everything in a big house. It comes with a transfer switch that turns the generator on immediately power outage occurs.
With this generator, power will be returned to your home within 10 seconds. And the installation of the generator is very easy. This unit also holds up well for a long time and its motor unit is well-built and air-cooled for long life. You can leaveit outside because it has a corrosion-proof finish on it. It is also perfect for seaside installation.
It has a real-time power status and can also manage your entire backup system. One thing to keep in mind is that this generator is a stationary unit only. To give the unit any portability at all, you have to mount it on a large truck.
It has a 5-year warranty that is backed by Kohler’s reliability and performance.
- It has 20,000-watt power
- Its transfer switch is 100 Amp
- It is air-cooled
- The unit runs on LP or natural gas
- Its voltage regulation is +/-1%
- It comes with a 2000 hour or 5-year warranty
- This unit is heavy to put in place
- It needs to be installed by a pro
4. Champion Power Equipment 100294 – Quietest whole house generator
Champion’s 14-kW provides 24/7 power for the whole house, giving you the satisfaction that all your appliances are working fine even when there is a power outage. This unit is very quiet and it does not need you to refuel it. It is designed to function perfectly in sub-zero temperatures as well as extreme heat, plus it also comes with a 10-year manufacturer warranty.
Champion 100294 kicks on automatically when there is a power outage and kicks off when the power is restored. The unit’s 24-volt starting system can work in temperatures that range from -22° F to 104° F without the need for a warming kit. Its sub-panel style transfer switch comes with 8 circuits.
The total harmonic distortion is below 5%, so you shouldn’t bother about the fragile electronics getting damaged. It has a minimum footprint. You can keep it 18 inches from your house. It also has an anti-corrosive enclosure that will help it withstand a storm and salty environment.
The generator’s onboard battery charger charges it every time, so you will always have the starting power you need when there is an emergency. This unit is connected to your natural gas system or propane, so you will never need to refuel it. This generator also performs self-diagnostic tests every week.
- The unit works perfectly in no temperature and serious heat conditions
- It protects and supports fragile electronics.
- The unit starts automatically when there is a power outage
- It comes with a 10-year limited warranty
- The installation of this unit consumes time and requires technical support
Generac 6237 is one of the best whole house generators that will provide you awesome services. This is unit is CARB Compliant and has 8kW Air Cooled 100 Amp Automatic Transfer Switch with a 10-circuit load center.
It also comes with 30-foot, 5-foot, and 2-foot pre-wired conduits, an outdoor connection box, a 1-foot flexible fuel line pigtail for sophisticated usages.
The generator is 48 x 25 x 29 inches dimension and 360 pounds weight.
It uses liquid propane and natural gas and comes with a hands-free operation without a manual start and no need to refuel. It also doesn’t come with extension cords. The generator allows smooth operation of sensitive appliances. It comes with the owner’s manual, installation guide, UL, CUL, as well as EPA compliant for safety.
This unit also comes with a 5-year limited warranty from the manufacturer.
- It runs on natural gas and liquid propane
- The unit supplies True power technology with smooth and clean operation
- Comes with an auto system for power loss
- It is automatic
- It comes with a five-year warranty
- The unit is 360 pounds, so it is too big to carry
- The unit needs air to be cool
- Bad quality control
How much does a whole house generator cost?
The cost of whole house generators depends on the square footage of your house and how you use the generator, as well as the power you want it to generate for your home. You can get a compact standby generator for your house at $500. A generator that is capable of generating over 20kW of power should be gotten around $6,000. Still, you can even see some generators that cost as much as $10,000 and more.
The average cost of installation for a whole house generator is $3,700. In the US, the cost to install the generator ranges from $400 to $9,500.
You can get the lowest installation cost when both the electric meter and gas meter are on the same side of your house. The cost of installation will increase if the generator and meters are not close. It is recommended to consult with a reputable dealer before you purchase your whole home generator so that you will find the unit and pricing options for your unique needs.
What size whole house generator do I need?
To know the size of the generator your house will need, all you have to do is add up the wattage of all the things you want to power when the power goes off. Before you start calculating, you have to keep in mind that some appliances such as air conditioners, sump pumps, and refrigerators for instance —consume more wattage briefly when they’re cycling on, which can shake off what you’ve if you don’t consider them.
Also, you have to pin down on the wattage you hardwire appliances will need. You will have to ask your electrician. Most household appliances can be powered with 3000 to 6500 watts. If your house has a small furnace and city water, this should cover your needs. However, if your house has a larger furnace and/or a good pump, what you need is a 5000 to 6000 watt whole home generator.
If you want the ultimate entry-level whole house standby generator, then a 22kW is an excellent choice for you. Also, a 27-36kW generator is perfect for most homes because they replace 75% of the 200 amps that comes into your home’s electrical panel. The load-managing ware of these generators is advanced, so you will barely notice that your air conditioners don’t kick on at the same time so that they won’t overload the system.
If you want your entire home to be backed up as if the light never went out, a 48kW generator is excellent, as it can produce 220 amps of electricity at 240 volts, which happens to be almost the same power that comes from the utility.
What is the best whole house generator?
The best whole house generator is subjective. What is best for you might not be the best for your neighbor. This is why an in-depth review like ours comes handy. With the reviews and sizing guide to help you determine which one is best for you.
How big of a generator to run the whole house?
Generators are not sized by their width or height or weight, but by their electrical output. Generators are measured in watts or kilowatts. Watts and Kilowatts are used to measure electricity, for example, 1kW equals to 1,000 watts.
Getting the right size of the generator is very important. If you get a whole house generator that is too small, you will end up overloading the generator or force it to provide power that is too much to handle. In this case, your generator will automatically turn off or start to overheat. And this will fry your generator and expensive appliances.
If you buy a generator that is too large, you will overpay for the unit and the operating cost.
The best way to know which size of generator to add up the loads for every electrical appliance you will be running simultaneously. It is important to know that there are two types of loads. There are resistive loads, such as ovens, lights, and TV, and the inductive load which is things with motors, for example, central air conditioning system, well pump, and pool pump.
Resistive loads are the stated value such ad 100 watts at 120 volts, while inductive loads cause temporary startup surges and draw around amps that is 150% more than the run rating that is printed on your unit’s motor.
How does a whole house generator work?
These standby generators work off fuels such as liquefied petroleum gas and natural gas (LPG). Standby generators are connected to the home’s electrical wiring, which is usually indoors and the fuel source. They have an automatic transfer switch, which will sense when there is a power outage. It will switch immediately power outage occurs and switches back to the main power grid when power is restored.
There is no need for manual power switching, and the switching process is around 30 seconds or less.
Whole house generator installation
Whole house generators should be installed by a professional DIYer or electrician. Below are installation steps;
Your professional will first install an electrical sub-panel with the transfer switch near the main panel. They will then redirect critical circuits from the main panel to the sub-panel.
After that, the electrician will prepare a concrete base or level stone for the standby generator and then set it on the base/level stone.
Your electrician will then dig a trench from the generator to a new high-pressure gas meter and run a new natural gas line, tracing the wire from the generator to the gas meter. They will connect the gas line.
They will then pull the electrical cable to the house and make the gas and electrical connection to the rear of the standby generator.
If you live in a place where power outage is frequent, then you need to invest in a standby generator. Getting the best whole house generator for your home can be very tricky, but with our guide, we are sure that you won’t have a problem when you want to make your purchase. Always makes sure you buy a whole house generator for your house from a reputable manufacturer.
Always keep it in mind that you should install your generator outside your home. This is the most important way to keep the user safe. Most people fuel their generator unit while it is operating. This is very bad. It is important to off the generator and let it cool before you refuel it.