Having a standby home generator can mean the difference between no power for days on end and having power when it hits the fan. Having this emergency power backup is important, that’s why in this article I will show you the best standby home generator you can buy for the money.
Why you should have a home generator.
A home generator is a great investment, it’s one of those things that doesn’t seem important… Until you need it.
When the lights go out there’s no way to know when they coming back on. While the storms rolling through the states are getting stronger every year, many people are not prepared. If you are thinking about getting a standby home generator don’t wait.
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The Best Home Standby Generator You Can Buy For Under 1,000 Dollars.
In the market for a new generator is where I found myself a few years ago. The Duromax EH 12,000-watt generator kept showing up in just about every article I could find.
Boasting a monster 18 horsepower, 457 cc overhead valve engine, and a rating of 12,000 watts, this thing is nicknamed the beast, for good reason.
How I ended up with the Duromax.
I was in the market for a home generator, I had an older 8,500-watt unit that worked OK but not great. The issue with that machine is it was very heavy as it was designed mainly for construction site use. The thing was impossible to move out of the garage without a massive struggle.
Time for a change
So as it goes, my neighbor had this Duromax XP 12,000 EH. He decided to install an automatic standby unit to make power outages a total thing of the past at his house so I purchased this from him with just about no hours on the engine.
Let’s check out some of the specifications of the Duromax.
- 7.9 Gallon fuel tank
- weight= 236 pounds
- Dimensions= 40 x 29 x 27.5 inches
- Can be hooked up to propane tanks of any size, (may need adapters)
- Massive power (up to 12,000 watts)
- Great price (under 1,000 bucks)
Some initial problems with the generator.
The first thing I needed to do was get a set of tires for the unit. The foam-filled tires that come with this unit are junk. I was shocked a generator that seems to be made very well would come with such poorly designed tires, the weight flattens out the airless tires making rolling the unit around impossible.
Seriously it’s not even a question, if you buy this generator order wheels at the same time, the size I used is 10-inch diameter and 5/8 axle size. You can find some by clicking >HERE<
The following setup items come with the Duromax EH 12,000 generator.
- Spark plug wrench
- Two spanner wrenches for general maintenance
- Double-sided screwdriver
- Oil funnel with a hose for filling the engine oil
- DC charging cables
- Plug ends (for making power cords)
Setting up the Duromax EH 12,000-watt duel fuel generator.
The first thing you will need to do is remove the shipping braces, these braces prevent engine movement during shipment. You will need to flip the generator over and remove the brightly colored brace, and the wood brace under the generator.
The next step is to add engine oil, I use Redline motor oil. This oil is high quality and will keep up with the demands of this generator running at 3,600 rpm for days.
10w30 is the recommended engine oil weight for this generator. Redline is a very high-quality oil that will stand up to the demands of the large 457cc engine. Don’t go cheap on the oil. When this generator is operating the engine is running at 3600 rpm. This can be for a long duration if you have a long-term power outage, you need an oil that will not break down.
Next, you will also have to install the wheels, again I would not install the ones that come with the generator. Next, hook up the battery, it will be discharged from shipping so I would charge it up overnight. The unit does come equipped with a pull start, just in case the battery does die.
Time to start it up! This is one place where for the price, this unit really shines. Propane fuel capability comes standard and ready!
My thoughts after using the Duromax after a few power outages.
At this point, I have owned the Duromax EH 12,000-watt generator for a few years and I have needed it a handful of times. The unit powers my entire home with ease, the only issue I have had is the exhaust heat shield cracked after 3 Days of constant operation, this is just a shield and has no effect on the generator’s use.
Aside from the terrible wheels, I think Duromax has a home run here. I would invest in a good quality generator cord, rated for 50 Amps such as the one found >HERE< Check your own application to determine which cord setup works for you.
Another thing I really like about the generator is the noise level, at <74 db, it’s pretty quiet considering how much power it produces. This is a major plus, especially in long-term outage situations.
Let’s take a look at some more specifications.
- Rated wattage AC (gasoline) = 9,500 watts
- Rated wattage (propane) = 8075 watts
- Surge wattage (gasoline) =12000 watts
- Surge wattage (propane) =10,200 watts
- AC voltage 120/240V
- frequency 60hz
- AC phase single
- DC voltage 12 volts
- DC amperage 8.3 Amps
- Run time @ 50% gasoline = 10 hr
- Run time @ 50% propane = 5 hr 5 gallon
- Oil capacity 37 fl ounces (1.1L)
Duromax really hit it on the head with this model, they have made an affordable generator that has very big power for the price paid. The power is clean, I can power just about my whole house with this unit and its clean power. I have not had any issues with sensitive electronics. You could get a higher-end brand, such as a Honda, but the price point will rise. A comparable Honda generator, let’s say a 10,000-watt model is $5,200…… No doubt it’s a superior generator but the price difference is huge. You can get this Duromax for less than $1,000 Bucks!
In terms of ratings let’s see how this generator stacks up, below is a list of grades, 1 being terrible and 10 being great.
- Initial quality = 8.5 This generator is well made. I am impressed with the quality.
- Power = 10 This thing is a beast, it is a powerful unit.
- Price = 10 At around $1200 it’s hard to beat what you get.
- Ease of use = 8 The generator is easy to start and operate. The only issue with propane use is it has a slightly lower wattage rating on propane.
- Overall = 9 For the money, it’s hard to beat. Good quality and powerful for the price.
If you are looking for a powerful generator without breaking the bank, check out the Duromax XP 12,000 EH, I don’t think you will find a better generator for the price. Just make sure to hook it up to your house correctly, break it in right, and change the oil to a high-grade synthetic. And for god sake get some new wheels!