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There’s a very good reason why most engines run on diesel – it’s safer than pretty much any gas or fuel in more ways than one. Diesel fuel does not ‘spark’ when you ignite the engine, plus diesel burns at lower temperatures, preventing wasted resources and optimizing your long-term costs.
If you value safety and efficiency above everything else and are looking for a power generator, we warmly recommend using a diesel-powered one. Today we intend to give you some insight regarding the benefits of diesel generators and provide you with our selection of the top 5 best portable diesel generator models that money can buy.
Let’s start: Why should I consider buying a portable diesel fuel generator?
In earlier days of diesel-type generators, people kept using them despite the many shortcomings they brought to the table – a diesel generator used to be incredibly loud, not to mention that organizing storage units was almost as expensive as diesel itself a couple of decades ago.
Nowadays these generators have gotten cheaper; the outdated spark-plug technology was replaced with improved start-up mechanisms, and the once loud and bulky generators were updated in terms of size and quietness.
The main fields where diesel generators dominate other generator types are safety and reliability. Models that belong to this category are substantially safer to use due to low-temperature fuel burning and the complete absence of sparks once the engine starts running.
Furthermore, diesel generators are purposefully designed to be sturdier and more resilient to extreme temperatures as well as physical damages. Our topic of today is about the freshest state-of-the-art diesel generators that are both smaller and more transportable in comparison to their huge, heavy predecessors, so let’s have a look at the best portable diesel generators in 2021. The power, the items await below, along with a few free tips for any respected buyer.
Top 5 Best Portable Diesel Generator Reviews – Start the Fuel
Best Overall Generator – DuroStar DS4850EH 4,850 Watt Portable Generator
The main reason why DuroStar’s DS4850EH is probably the best portable diesel generator on the current market is that it encompasses everything a well-rounded generator should – it’s not overly pricey, it’s sufficiently strong, and it’s laden with a myriad of utility features that help its versatility.
In terms of compactness, the DuroStar’s DS4850EH features two sturdy wheels and a retractable carry handle other generators don’t offer. Even though it weighs approximately 132 pounds it’s still very easy to transport from point A to point B, making it easier for shipping, especially in America. Moreover, most diesel generators are pretty noisy, but DuroStar’s DS4850EH emits only 69 decibels.
Wattage-wise, DS4850EH offers 4.85 kW at peak power (3,850 running), which is arguably the golden middle between industrial heavy-duty models and petite backup generator machines.
Another reason why DuroStar’s DS4850EH is among the best portable diesel generators available is their patented MX2 technology. Namely, this feature significantly enhances the output of 120V slots, making this generator suitable for heavy-duty use to some extent.
We’re also positive that you’ll like DS4850EH’s power panel – it sports two 120V outlets and a single 120/240V outlet, as well as a little voltmeter and a 12V charging port.
All things considered, the quality of DS4850EH’s features is undeniable. Its sturdy construction topped with compact convenience only adds to its value for the buck, but the ultimate reason why this is our top pick is that all of the benefits it brings to the table are available at a decently approachable price. One of the best generators in this tier, for sure.
- Excellent wattage power, plenty of kW and HP
- Top-quality 208CC engine
- Convenient power panel outline
- Dual fuel ready
- Quality wheels and parts compared to similar engines
- Could use a couple of extra receptacles
Best High-End Power Generator – DuroMax XP12000EH 12,000 Watt Portable Generator
Our runner-up pick is DuroMax’s XP12000EH. In all fairness, this would be the best portable diesel generator on our list if it weren’t for its hefty price tag. Regardless, it still packs a huge bang for the buck due to its exceptionally strong features and remarkable wattage.
Speaking of which, DuroMax’s XP12000EH offers 12 kW, which makes it an excellent choice for both commercial and industrial use.
It’s one of the heaviest diesel generators on our list with 224 pounds of support parts, but DuroMax took care of this issue by adding a set of fat-tired all-terrain wheels to it.
These products are supplied with 18 HP 457 CC engines that offer reliable, consistent performance and full support. Another reason why this may be one of the best portable diesel generator models on the market is the fact that it packs dual-fuel generator technology. If you at any point end up short on diesel, you can simply switch to propane. One of the better mobile products you can find in this category, a good choice to add to your Amazon cart.
- 12 kW make it suitable for both commercial and industrial application
- Robust 457 CC 18 HP engine
- Dual fuel technology
- Sturdy all-terrain tires
- Exceptionally sturdy construction for this tier of generators
- Enough power to be used as a whole-house backup generator
- Expensive and heavy
Best Mid-Range Power Generator – Firman W03082 3,300 Watt Portable Generator
If our top picks are either too strong or too expensive for you, we suggest taking a gander at Firman’s W03082 generator. It offers 3.3 kW of power and a 1.8-gallon reservoir, as well as a plethora of high-quality features alongside superior affordability.
The first notable feature of Firman’s W03082 is the electric recoil start-up mechanism. It offers faster ignition time coupled with improved reliability at the expense of a diesel-exclusive mode of operation. Namely, the only drawback of W03082 we can add here that it can’t be used when electricity is down or unavailable.
On the brighter side, this generator offers the auto voltage regulator, the power alternator feature, as well as whisper-quiet performance. Overall, the W03082 may be a perfect choice for you if you’re not content with the quality of budget generators while at the same time you’re not feeling like investing hundreds of dollars in one either.
- 3.3 kW of power
- Big diesel tank
- Auto voltage regulator and power alternator features
- Whisper-quiet, noise-free performance, rare to find on the market in America
- Affordable compared to similar generators
- Requires electricity to start
- Plastic tires
Best Light-Duty Power Generator – Pulsar 1,200 Watt (1.2 kW)
Pulsar’s diesel generator is our pick for the best portable diesel generator for home use. It offers 1.2 kW of power, two AC 120V receptacles, and one DC 12V battery-charging receptacle, and a variety of other high-quality features.
This generator is powered by a single-cylinder engine; furthermore, it sports an analog recoil start function and a modestly-sized 1.1-gallon fuel reservoir that can yield up to approximately five hours of use at 50% capacity of the engines.
The sturdy construction and superiorly low weight of Pulsar’s 1200W generator are the main reasons why it’s one of the finest models for domestic application.
- Affordable power generator
- Solid construction
- Excellent connectivity for the price
- Very light
- Great portable generator for RVs
- Relatively weak
Best Compact Generator – Sportsman 2,200 Watt Portable Generator
Our final pick of the day is Sportsman’s 2.2 kWportable generator. Even though it’s smaller than most diesel-powered generators, it offers 2.2 kW and a surprisingly strong engine.
It sports two AC 120V slots, a DC battery port, and two parallel outputs. Furthermore, it’s substantially cheaper than most models on our list.
The main reasons why we are recommending Sportsman’s generator to you are that it offers compact convenience backed with sufficient strength at an approachable price. Its only drawback is its flimsy plastic construction. This product will add the kW power you need to kick start your home. One of the good mobile solutions, feel free to check it through your dealer in America or via Amazon.
- Remarkably cheap power generator in this tier
- 2.2 kW
- Optimal connectivity for a budget-level generator
- A bit flimsy construction
Portable Diesel Generators Buying Guide – How to Start, Fuel, Gas, and More
This section contains a brief guide with all the info you’ll need to find the best diesel portable generators; before you make the final decision, consider the following factors regarding these products.
Start with size and storage of a portable diesel generator
Portable generators are often equipped with rolling wheels as one of the key parts for portability. However, you should also take size into consideration when making plans for storage. An ideal place where you can store your diesel generator should be a dry, isolated area – preferably a shed or a basement.
Power generator capacity
Diesel driven generators are dominantly used in the industrial sphere; this means that the selection of heavy-duty models is fairly larger when put back to back with the global catalog of light-duty models. Even though weaker (and cheaper) models are a relatively rare find, we’ve made sure to include a couple on our list of the best portable diesel generator models.
Noise produced by the generator
Some of the earliest diesel category generator models were nearly deafening; however, newer models have come a long way and are now much closer in this field when compared to propane generators, gas generators, and inverter generators. A standard diesel-powered generator emits approximately 80 decibels of noise, although quieter models aren’t so hard to find.
Eco-friendly generator options – stay off the bad gas and fuel, take the green start
Diesel is one of the most polluting fuel types you can find – even when compared to petrol. However, most modern generators that run on it are equipped with eco-friendly filters that significantly reduce these emissions. Even though eco-friendly diesel generators may cost a bit more, they’re worth investing in.
Quality of generator wheels – keep it portable
Most diesel-type generators are fairly heavy, so having a set of sturdy wheels equipped with your model is very important, especially for easier shipping. Machines supplied with flimsy wheels are easy to notice – small, slim tires and the material used in the construction process of the wheels are dead giveaways in terms of portability and shipping of the products.
Conclusion – The solutions are in the air
While diesel generators might be just a bit more demanding in terms of maintenance and fuel cost, they’re ultimately superior in sturdiness, reliability, ease of shipping, and cost-effectiveness. We hope that our selection of the best portable diesel generator models served you well in finding the one that can best cater to your needs and that you’ve learned what makes these generators best for you. Feel free to contact us for more solutions, we’re glad to offer a bit of support and see how users respond.