Best 3000 Watt Inverter Generator Reviews

Updated November 2, 2020

Inverter generators are a great alternative to the standard generators that have been flooding the market for years.

While they may not supply the same surge of power that a traditional generator does, they run much more efficiently, are extremely quiet while operational, and can be used for more sensitive equipment like your camera, mobile phone, or your laptop.

We understand that the world of generators is a little complicated at the best of times.

That’s why we’ve put together this detailed buying guide, along with some of our recommendations for the best 3000w inverter generators on the market.

Using both of these things, you’ll be able to make an informed and enlightened decision as to what the best generator is for you.

Best 3000 Watt Inverter Generators

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1 Briggs & Stratton - P3000 Power Smart Series Inverter Generator
Best Overall
Briggs & Stratton P3000 Inverter Generator
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2 Yamaha - EF3000iSEB Inverter Gas Powered Portable
Best For Higher Budgets
Yamaha EF3000iSEB Inverter Gas Powered Portable Generator
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3 Generac - GP3000i PowerRush Super Quiet Inverter Generator Generac GP3000i Inverter Generator
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4 Predator - 3500 Watt Super Quiet Inverter Generator Predator 3500W Inverter Generator
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5
Best For Low Budgets
5Firman W03081 Inverter Generator
Firman - W03081 Gas Portable Generator
Best For Low Budgets
Firman W03081 Inverter Generator
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6 WEN - 56380i Super Quiet 3800-Watt Portable Inverter Generator WEN 56380i Inverter Generator
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1. Briggs & Stratton P3000 Inverter Generator

Highlights
  • Long run time at half load.
  • Quiet Power Technology.
  • LCD statistics display.
  • Has the ability to connect with another generator.
Best Overall
Briggs & Stratton - P3000 Power Smart Series Inverter Generator

The Briggs & Stratton P3000 generator is a mighty powerful engine packed into a compact hand luggage-sized unit. It’s extremely well designed and thankfully easy to transport!.

It’s fairly lightweight at just 84lbs with never-flat wheels and a built-in handle. These features combine to make it easy to move with you, both indoors and outdoors. As it’s not too built, it is easy to store away or even load into your RV for trips.

The powerful 171cc engine has a generous runtime of 10 hours at half load when the engine is full. With most powerful engines, you would expect an unbearable amount of noise from the generator. However, that’s not the case with this model. The entire unit is cased in a plastic housing and crafted with Quiet Power Technology. The result of this is a generator that has a noise level of just 58 decibels – just under the noise level of a normal conversation!

In terms of using the device, it’s fairly easy to understand. It features a handy control panel with an LCD display screen. The screen informs you of important statistics such as low oil, overload, and the status of the machine such as battery level. These each hold LED lights that will light up when something changes.

On the same side of the generator, there are different reset buttons that allow you to take control of power outlets in case of an overload.

Another handy feature of this model is a printed maintenance schedule on the device itself This is a great easy way to keep track of maintenance checks that your generator requires.

Lastly, this generator is particularly generous with power outlets. It features 4 household outlets, 1 12V DC outlet, 1 USB outlet, and 1 120-volt 30 amp locking outlet. The latter also has an RV adaptor! This generator is defined as an inverter, meaning it’s safe to use for sensitive devices such as mobile phones and laptops!

Specifications

Size:
26 x 14 x 21 inches
Voltage:
120 V
Wattage:
3000 W
Noise Level:
58 dBA
Output:
2600 W
Power Source:
Gasoline

Pros

  • Never-flat wheels and handle.
  • Easy-to-use single power control knob,
  • Multiple different outlets.
  • High wattage for the size.

Cons

  • Lower wattage than some other models.
  • Smaller gas tank than others (1.5 gallons).

2. Yamaha EF3000iSEB Inverter Gas Powered Portable Generator

Highlights
  • 4-stroke OHV engine with 3.4-gallon tank capacity. 
  • Four wheels and parking brake for added portability. 
  • EPA approved.
  • CARB compliant.
Best For Higher Budgets
Yamaha - EF3000iSEB Inverter Gas Powered Portable

Created by the known and loved brand, Yamaha, this powerful generator is able to run for almost 20 hours without a break.

While its peak AC output is said to be 3000 watts, this generator benefits from Yamaha’s unique Boost Control Unit. This technology can sense when the appliance needs an extra boost of power and can supply an added 500 watts to get it running like clockwork.

The Yamaha EF3000iSEB is also one of the quietest models on the market, making it a perfect companion for those remote camping trips, or to use in a tranquil residential area.

For those first-time users, this inverter generator features an easy-to-use control panel.

Here you can start the engine as well as monitor its performance. You’ll also find a series of indicator lights that will alert you when the generator is low on oil.

Specifications

Size:
27 x 18 x 22 inches
Voltage:
120 V
Wattage:
3500 watts surge and 2800 watts running
Noise Level:
53 dB
Output:
19-hour run time at 25% load
Power Source:
Gasoline

Pros

  • Comes with a 3-year warranty.
  • Made by a reputable and long-standing brand.
  • Boost Control Unit that senses need for extra power.
  • Very low noise level at 53dB.

Cons

  • Heavier and clunkier than most portable generators.

3. Generac GP3000i Inverter Generator

Highlights
  • Clean power
  • Parallel ready
  • Ultra-portable design
  • 50% more starting capacity

Measuring 22.20”x13.30”x18.40”, Generac’s inverter generator is lightweight, compact, and has built-in handles, making it ultra-portable. Its 149cc engine supplies a running wattage of 2300W. 

It can run for 4.5 hours at 50% of its rated load. Equipped with a quiet inverter power, this small marine generator can provide reliable performance with minimal side emissions. 

True Power Technology enables it to deliver clean, stable power, which makes it convenient for charging sensitive electronics such as laptops and smartphones. 

Since it comes with USB ports, you can plug your mobile devices directly into the generator. Best of all, this generator is parallel ready—you can connect it to a similar unit to double its power.

Specifications

Size:
22.20 x 13.30 x 18.40 inches
Voltage:
120 V
Wattage:
3000 starting Watts, 2300 running Watts
Noise Level:
60 Hz

Pros

  • Quiet operation
  • Easy to use
  • Parallel ready
  • Compact and lightweight

Cons

  • Limited fuel capacity
  • Short run time

4. Predator 3500W Inverter Generator

Highlights
  • Easy electric start.
  • Long run time.
  • Digital LCD screen with stats.
  • Top-quality enclosure.

This classic red and black Predator generator works on a 212cc air-cooled OHV gas engine with a convenient electric start. This means you just press a button to power up your generator, rather than pulling a recoil cord.

It has a generous run time for 11 hours at 25% capacity making it a great choice as backup power for routine power outages and even as a bring-along for camping trips. It also has enough power to run an RV!

When the fuel runs out, it’s easy to top up again with the sliding panel on the side of the model.

The generator is created with a durable and robust outer casing, helping to lower the sound levels by trapping the noise inside. The result of this is an extremely quiet 57-decibel generator when it’s running – this is around the noise of a conversation! Furthermore, it holds 4 smooth-rolling casters for easy transport.

In terms of safety, this generator has you covered. It had an LCD display that will notify you when the oil is low, if there’s an overload and will also show you the output level. It also comes with automatic overload protection, shutting down the engine to prevent damage.

Lastly, this generator comes with multiple outlets to suit most devices. It includes 2 120 V grounded outlets, 1 120 V twist-lock outlet, and 1 DC-12 V two-pin outlets.

Specifications

Size:
22.75 x 17.30 x 20.00 inches
Voltage:
120 V
Wattage:
3500 W
Noise Level:
57 decibels
Output:
3000 W
Power Source:
Gasoline

Pros

  • Easy to transport.
  • Automatic low-oil shut down.
  • Easy to refuel.
  • Includes a throttle switch.

Cons

  • Weighs almost 100 pounds.
  • High price point.

5. Firman W03081 Inverter Generator

Highlights
  • Portable features such as strong wheels and easy-to-grip handle. 
  • Larger than average, 1.8-gallon tank capacity.
  • 97lbs in weight. 
  • CeTL and CARB certified. 
  • User-friendly control panel.
Best For Low Budgets
Firman - W03081 Gas Portable Generator

If we consider value for money, the Firman WO3081 is one of the best 3000w inverter generators on the market.

Its portability is one of its best features. Equipped with hardy, large wheels, and comfortable handles, you’ll find it easy enough to move this generator to where you need it to be.

Once you’ve found the perfect spot to power the appliances that need an extra boost of energy, you can use its simplified control panel to start and operate the generator.

Featuring indicator lights, a number of switches, and plenty of useful outlets, this control panel has everything you need to get the unit started and to monitor its performance.

While the Firman is generally reliable and requires little maintenance, there may be some times when it needs a little TLC.

Luckily, the unit is delivered with a range of different accessories such as a wrench, funnel, and even some oil, so you can keep the machine running like clockwork when you need it the most.

Specifications

Size:
24 x 18 x 20 inches
Voltage:
120 V
Wattage:
3300 watts surge and 3000 watts running
Noise Level:
58 dB
Output:
9-hour run time at 25% load
Power Source:
Gasoline

Pros

  • Produces clean power at less than 3% THD.
  • Eco mode for maximum efficiency.
  • Comes with a 3-year warranty.
  • National park certified.
  • Parallel capable.

Cons

  • Low runtime than others on the market.

6. WEN 56380i Inverter Generator

Highlights
  • Produces clean power.
  • Automatic fuel shutoff.
  • Easy-to-read digital display.
  • Built-in wheels and handle.

The WEN 56380i generator is a small yet mighty model with a very attractive price point.

Its powerful 212cc 4-stroke OHV engine produces clean power. This is defined by its less than 1.2% total harmonic distortion. The result of this is safe electricity that is suitable for smaller and more sensitive electronics such as mobiles, laptops, and tablets. The 2.2-gallon fuel tank also has a generous run time of 8.5 hours at 50% load.

In addition to this, the WEN model comes with a specially designed “Eco Mode” to increase engine fuel efficiency. When this feature is switched on, the generator will automatically adjust its fuel consumption depending on how many items are plugged into the outlets at that moment. The purpose of this is to prevent the use of gasoline that is not actually required.

Fuel shutoff maximizes the generator’s lifespan by using up the remaining fuel in the carburetor before shutting down. This feature turns off the flow of fuel, allowing the generator to use up the remaining fuel from the carburetor before automatically shutting down. This helps fight the build-up and blockages caused by stagnant fuel inside of the carburetor, minimizing maintenance while prolonging the unit’s lifespan

This generator makes it easy to keep track of its statistics with the digital display on the side of the device. It monitors its voltage, wattage, frequency, run time, and fuel supply. This way you’ll know in advance when to top up the fuel so you’re not surprised with an empty gas tank when you need your generator the most.

The 110-pound generator is easy to transport thanks to the wheeled design with collapsible handles. It’s also classed as “RV ready” with its TT-30R receptacle making it a perfect addition to outdoor trips.

Lastly, this model includes a variety of outlets. It has 2 120V DC outlets and one AC 120V outlet. Plus one 12V receptacle and 2 5V USB ports.

Specifications

Size:
23.2" L x 18" W x 20.1" H
Voltage:
120 V
Wattage:
3800 W
Noise Level:
57 dBA
Output:
3400 W
Power Source:
Gasoline

Pros

  • 8.5-hour half-load run time.
  • Includes an eco mode.
  • Easy electric start.
  • Multiple ports.

Cons

  • Weighs over 100 pounds.
  • Slightly lower runtime than others.

3000 Watt Inverter Generator Buying Guide

Traditional VS Inverter Technology

From the outside, traditional generators and inverter generators may all look the same. But it is the technology inside them that sets them apart from each other. 

An inverter generator works by producing DC power and then converting this into AC power. In simple terms, this type of power isn’t too far off the source of energy that you’ll get from your house plugs. 

This makes it much more effective at running sensitive equipment using what is known as clean power. 

Clean power is a source that produces no surges or spikes in its energy output, making it much safer to supply power to appliances that require a lower voltage. 

Another huge advantage to an inverter generator is that it runs at the level of electricity needed to power the specific appliance. This is very different from a traditional generator that runs at a constant speed regardless of the appliance that it is powering.

In this way, an inverter generator is much more fuel-efficient and typically much quieter. 

Fuel Type And Fuel Tank

Inverter generators tend to be very fuel-efficient generators as their engine adjusts depending on the appliance it is powering. The efficiency of the unit does vary depending on the type of fuel that is running it. 

Natural Gas

Natural gas generators are becoming more and more popular each day. As well as being one of the most energy-efficient sources of fuel available, if you have access to the grid, you will always have an available supply of fuel. 

It’s also much easier to store,  as it doesn’t come with the safety worries that many other fuel types hold. That’s not to mention the fact that natural gas is the most affordable type of fuel you can find.

Natural gas is also much cleaner than other generator fuels which means you’ll be doing your bit for the environment. 

Diesel

Diesel is considered to be one of the most fuel-efficient sources on the market. While it may be slightly more expensive than the alternatives, diesel generators are designed to work extremely well and for longer periods of time. 

Another added advantage to using diesel is that it’s relatively easy to obtain. In a situation where you find yourself out of fuel, you’ll never be too far from somebody selling diesel. In fact, most service stations will supply you with it. 

Unfortunately, diesel generators release some of the highest emissions, so you’ll need to double check that they’re allowed in your neighborhood before you buy one. If you are interested in this fuel source, make sure you check the best diesel generator reviews

Dual Fuel

You may have noticed that some 3000 watt inverter generators are dual-fuelled. This means that you can run the unit on two different fuels.

This is a particularly useful option if you’re ever in a situation where you run out of fuel and can’t find any in the surrounding area. It works as a sort of back-up fuel to run your generator. 

Sometimes, dual fuel generators are equipped with a handy transfer switch, which allows you to swap between the fuels with one easy click of a button. 

Electric Start

Once upon a time, all of the generators on the market had to be started manually. This means that you had to pull a coil that would, in turn, churn the motor into action. 

Nowadays, a lot of the generators available have an easy electric start instead. This means they can spring into motion with the simple click of a switch.

While you can still find pull-coil generators on the market today, it’s generally understood that electric starts are much more user-friendly, especially for the first-time user. 

Run Time

A generator’s run time depends on two things: the fuel efficiency of the motor, and the tank capacity.

In theory, this means that the larger the fuel tank, and the more fuel-efficient the motor, the longer the runtime should be without you having to refuel. 

Naturally, it’s better to pick the generators with the largest fuel tank to ensure a decent run time. However, in some situations, you may not need such a long run time.

For example, at home, you may have easy access to fuel, which means a long run time might not be totally necessary. 

In this case, you can concentrate more on the generator’s other features. 

However, if you’re heading out into the wilderness on a trip, or need your generator to power your tools all day long, you may want to ensure that your generator has a very long running time. 

While traditional generators are typically measured on half load, you’ll more than likely see inverter generator’s run time measured by its quarter load. 

Remote Start

The next step up from an electric start is a remote start. At the moment, these are quite rare to come by.

Using the most advanced generator technology, remote starter generators tend to sit at the more expensive end of the price tag.

Remote starts work by utilizing a remote key fob. When the user clicks the button on the fob, this will send a signal to the generator to start up. 

Remote generators are particularly useful in the event of a power outage when you want to power up the unit without having to fiddle around in the dark.

Portability

Inverter generators are fantastic as a portable companion. Not only are they physically smaller than standard generators, but they tend to be much quieter too. 

Whether you need a 3000 watt portable generator to take with you on your RV adventures into the remote countryside, or to give you a much-needed boost around the house, a portable generator will always be there by your side.

Along with their handy compact size, the majority of portable generators boats useful features such as fold-in handles, large durable wheels, and easy-grip spots, allowing you to pull, lift or slide the generator exactly where you need it to go. 

Size

Inverter generators are some of the smallest on the market, making them a perfect portable companion. 

Generally speaking, 3000w inverter generators are some of the largest of this kind and they are often used to power RVs and larger appliances such as air conditioners, microwaves, and kettles.

If you’re looking for something on the smaller side, and only need small fridges, lights, or laptops to be powered, then we’d recommend going for a 1000 watt inverter generator instead. 

You can, of course, get inverter generators that ring in at 7000 watts, and these are substantially larger than the 3000 watt generators you’ll find on the market. 

To choose the right size for you, consider carefully what it is that you need powering, and determine the power requirements for each appliance. You can add together the total wattage of the appliances and add 10% as a contingency. 

Uses 

Due to their smaller size, inverter generators are typically a lot more portable than your standard unit. 

This makes them perfect for remote camping trips, tradesmen that need to carry a generator for power tools, and other situations where a flexible unit may come in handy. 

Noise Level

A quiet 3000 watt generator is not hard to come by. In fact, inverter generators are generally a lot quieter than their traditional counterparts. 

This is because inverter generators don’t run at full speed all of the time, they adapt their output according to the device or devices that they are powering. 

Saying this, you’ll still find that the decibel level varies between models. If you’re hoping to take your generator into more remote areas, where restrictions may be placed on generators, it’s important to go for the quietest unit on the market. 

Pricing Range

The great thing about inverter generators is that you don’t need to spend a fortune to get a reliable and powerful model. In fact, you’ll find prices starting from as low as $500, rising high into the thousands of dollars range. 

What you’re paying the extra dollars for are the extra features that come with some of the more high-tech generators. These include remote starting functions, parallel connectors, and tech-forward control panels.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: 3000 Watt Generator - What Will It Run?
A:

A 3000 watt generator is considered to be a medium-sized unit. While it may be too strong for your mobile phone, and not strong enough to power up your whole house, it’s the perfect size to run a variety of appliances in your RV or your toolbox.

If you’re using it as a backup in your home, a 3000 watt generator will happily power a small fridge or freezer. Just remember to double check the wattage on your appliances first.

Our Verdict

By now, we should have equipped you with enough knowledge for you to go into the buying process with confidence.

If you’re still unsure, just make sure you carefully think about exactly what you want to power with your generator before you buy one.

Having a clear understanding of the exact specs you need from your 3000w inverter generator will help to narrow down the units on the market that are best for your needs.

If you’re struggling still, our recommendations of the top models on the market are a fail-safe option. We know this because we’ve done careful research for you. So all you need to do is click the button.