Best Camping Generators

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When you head out in your campervan, RV, Caravan, or out to a campsite with your favorite tent, one thing is for sure, you want peace and tranquility and not the sound of a loud diesel generator. Although we all desire a noise-free, tranquil, and peaceful time when we go camping there are a few creature comforts that in this day and age are almost impossible to live without. The biggest “necessity” to most typical campers is, of course, electricity. Unless you are camping on a site with electric hookup, getting electricity to your temporary home can be a struggle that is usually answered by a noisy fuel-burning generator.

Like most things, this modern problem can be answered with a modern solution. In recent years, most fuel-burning generators have become much more efficient and almost silent which means you can now get as much electricity to your camper, RV, or tent as you need with nothing more than a subtle whirring of a well-tuned engine. On the other hand, green energy has taken huge steps in the right direction, with solar and wind generators are now a very plausible means of power. There are plenty of solar and turbine camping generators that provide all the power that you will need without the noise and fossil fuel pollution that comes with fuel-burners.

In this article, we will be going over the pros and cons of green energy camping generators that use energy from the wind or sun to produce power, as well as looking at the benefits of owning a modern fuel-burning camping generator. By the end of this article, you will know if a solar or wind generator will cater to all your electrical needs or whether you will need a modern fuel-burner as your main, or backup source of power. Enjoy!

How Will You Be Using Your Camping Generator

The first question you should ask yourself before deciding what the best camping generator for you and your setup is, is how you will be using it. If you are heading on a tour where you will not have any access to electricity for many weeks, then you will need to consider your options wisely. If you are seriously considering the vanlife or touring in your RV long term, then your most cost-effective option is to go with a source of green energy as well as a fuel-burning camping generator as backup. Covering all eventualities will ensure you are never without power.

If you are planning on heading out touring in your RV and stopping past campsites that offer electric hookup, then a generator may not be as important to you. If you have a leisure battery setup in your caravan, RV, or camper then you should have an inlet that allows you to charge the system with mains power. Once your leisure batteries are charged, they should last for quite some time depending on your energy use.

To help keep your batteries charged when you do not have the option for electric hook up you can use a solar or wind turbine generator to keep those batteries topped up. Depending on your power use, these kinds of generators can sustain you while on the road for many months. Even if you plan on checking in to commercial campsites, they can save you some money on electric hookup as you will not need to charge your leisure batteries as much.

Best Solar Camping Generator: The Goal Zero Yeti 200X Solar Kit

Pros
  • Comes with a Li-ion 14.4V 13Ah battery
  • Full charge with supplied solar panel in under 24 hours
  • Battery pack can be charged at home, at a campsite, and with the solar panel
  • Plenty of power to keep a fridge running and charge cameras, phones, and laptops
  • The kit can be hooked up to more leisure batteries for larger power storage
  • More solar panels can be added for extra power input
Cons
  • Being solar you will have to rely on the weather if you are using this system alone

Overview

The Goal Zero Yeti 200X is a complete solar kit that is perfect for off-grid camping in a tent, RV, or trailer. This unit has plenty of power to keep your essentials running and your electricals charged providing the weather stays reasonable. The kit includes everything you need to get started without having to buy any extra kit or undertake and complicated wiring. The solar panel folds away neatly for easy transportation and has a fully adjustable kick stand so you can angle the panel toward the sun for maximum efficiency.

The Goal Zero 200X can be used in conjunction with other leisure batteries for extra power storage and the solar panel can be chained up to other panels (purchased separately) to generate extra power. This is the perfect kit for the beginner looking to add solar power to their camping set up without having to learn about complicated electrics. If you are camping in a sunny area or going touring during the summer, then this kit will provide all of the power you need to stay comfortable.

If you are a larger group or family, we recommend purchasing extra batteries and more solar panels to cope with the extra energy you may consume. If you are camping year-round and can’t guarantee extended sunshine or the benefit of additional electric hookups, then we recommend combining this kit with a wind turbine and/or fuel-burning generator.

Bottom Line

Overall, the Goal Zero Yeti 200X complete solar camping kit is the ideal starting point for adding solar energy to your RV, trailer, or tent camping setup. It is excellent at producing power and if you live in an area with many days of sunshine, then this kit is exceptionally reliable.

Best Wind Turbine Camping Generator: The Pikasola 400W Wind Turbine Generator

Pros
  • Low-speed starting means you can start to harness energy at low wind speeds
  • Integrated regulator that prevents over-charging of your batteries
  • Features a rotating body with a yaw adjustment for maximum efficiency
  • Easily installed on a freestanding pole or on a mounting rail that is fixed to your trailer or RV
Cons
  • Can be confusing to assemble but detailed instructions are provided
  • Being a wind turbine, you will have to rely on wind for your power

Overview

The Pikasola 400W wind turbine camping generator is a high-quality and highly efficient compact wind turbine that is capable of producing up to 400W of power. This is a great option as an addition to a camping setup, trailer, or RV if you are touring in a place with constant wind. If you live in an area with low wind or inconsistent changes in wind conditions, then we recommend combining this kit with a solar setup or fuel-burning generator.

The turbine has a fully integrated voltage regulator that ensures you do not over-charge your leisure batteries and damage their storage capacity and it has an MPPT intelligent microprocessor that can effectively adjust current and voltage for the most effective energy production. This product is made from high-quality materials that can withstand the wear and tear of outdoor living and life on the road so you can be sure that your green source of energy lasts for years without failure,

Combining this wind turbine camping generator with solar power can potentially keep you completely off-grid without having to sacrifice any essential electrical equipment or creature comforts. If you are serious about taking the vanlife or your camping life off-grid and fully self-sufficient, then this is a great addition to your setup.

Bottom Line

Overall, the Pikasola 400W wind turbine camping generator is a great addition to your power supply and has enough power to keep your power-bank and leisure batteries topped up sustainably. This is a great additional energy producer, however, unless you live in an area of high wind we recommend combining this with another generator as insurance against power shortages.

Best Fuel-Burning Camping Generator: The Honda EU2200i 2200W Super-Quiet Inverter Generator

Pros
  • Extremely lightweight (under 47 pounds)
  • Super quiet at only 48dBA
  • Very efficient, using only less than a gallon of fuel for 8 hours of constant use
  • Powerful enough to keep up with high-demand use (microwaves, ovens, fridge, lights, and charging electricals)
  • Easy fuel drain switch for long-term storage
Cons
  • Will need to buy funnels for mess-free fueling
  • Being a fuel-burning generator you will need to carry extra fuel with you when out camping

Overview

The Honda EU2200i is a 2200-Watt portable camping generator that provides enough power to run all of your essentials (fridge, freezer, lighting, and cooking applications) as well as support extra creature comforts and keep all of your electricals charged. This generator is extremely lightweight and efficient, weighing only 47-pounds and using under a gallon of fuel for 8 hours of constant use! This is one of the quietest camping generators on the market too and it is no louder than a normal conversation (48 to 47 dBA) which means you will hardly notice it when inside your RV, trailer, or conversing in your tent.

This generator is not exactly a source of green energy however its excellent fuel consumption and low emissions make it a responsible source of reliable power. You will not be relying on the weather for your energy either so if your leisure batteries are low you can easily restore power to your camping, trailer, or RV setup with a tug on the light pull-start cord.

This generator will provide more than enough power to keep essentials running for groups of up to 4 people without power worries but if you are a large group or are particularly energy-hungry people you may need something more. If you happen to be travelling in a large group or big family that has a high energy consumption, then you may want to add an additional generator to offset your power consumption. Honda makes this super simple and easy by allowing two of the EU2200i’s to be connected via an optional cable to provide up to 4400-Watts of power to your camping setup.

Bottom Line

Overall, the Honda EU2200i camping generator is a super-quiet, super-efficient, lightweight camping generator that is where to keep the lights on and your fridge cold no matter where you are and what the weather is like. Green energy is great, and it is the best option to power your camping setup however you cannot rely on the weather 24/7. That is where this generator comes in. If you are looking for a reliable source of power that will not cost you hundreds of dollars in fuel every month, then this is your best possible choice.

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