If you are a detailing business, a generator is one of the crucial pieces of equipment you need. But, finding the best generator for mobile detailing can be a tricky business.
After all, it’s an expensive product, and you want to hit the bulls-eye on the very first attempt. The good thing is that we’re helping you pick the right generator for your detailing business in this post.
By the end of it, you’ll be able to pick the one that won’t make you regret your decision later.
Let’s start talking.
1. Honda 662220 EU2200i 2200 Watt Inverter Generator – Best Overall
Although the Honda 662220 is an inverter generator, it offers a whopping 2200 watts, allowing you to power a variety of devices with ease. This makes it great for home use, camping, and importantly, mobile detailing.
And, since the sound it produces ranges from 48 to 57 dBA, you won’t have to worry about noise pollution either.
Moreover, the generator offers impressive fuel efficiency. Depending on the load, you can get 4 to 9.6 hours from it on a full tank. This means you can use it for multiple mobile detailing jobs. Also, despite offering a high wattage, the inverter generator from Honda is highly portable.
You might find viewing the fuel level a little difficult.
- Powerful (2200 watt)
- Fairly quiet
- Difficult to view fuel level
2. WEN 56200i 2000-Watt Gas-Powered Inverter Generator – Runner Up
The WEN 56200i is another inverter generator that you might like to add to your mobile detailing arsenal. Thanks to its 1600 running watts and 2000 peak watts, you can use it for a multitude of applications.
On top of that, you can even connect two WEN generators via the WEN parallel kit, which doubles the power. So, as far as the power is concerned, you won’t have to worry about it on the job.
Inverter generators are typically fuel-efficient. But, the thing that makes this generator worth your investment is its eco-friendly feature. You won’t have to worry about excessive fuel consumption as the generator adjusts it automatically, which eventually makes it a cost-effective option.
Moreover, since the generator creates clean and reliable power, it’s completely safe to power electronic devices as well. It does that by limiting total harmonic distortion to 1.2% at full load. This means you can also charge cell phones, laptops, and other vulnerable electronics safely with it.
In addition, the 79.7cc 4-stroke engine won’t cause any noise pollution. Since the sound it produces is only 53 decibels, no one at the job site is going to get disturbed by it. It’s comparable to a normal human conversation.
Another good thing is: The gas-powered inverter generator has a compact, fairly lightweight design (48 lbs.). Plus, there’s a carrying handle that makes it easy for you to move it around from one job site to another without hassle. In addition to that, the runtime you get on quarter-load is over 9 hours, which is impressive given the power it generates.
Although it’s a portable generator, you might find it taller than other similar generators on the market.
- Fairly quiet
- Clean and reliable power
- Fuel-efficient (eco-mode)
- Might be a little too tall
3. Pulsar G12KBN Heavy Duty Portable Generator – Also Great
Probably the most important thing you look at in a generator is its wattage since that determines which devices it can power easily. The Pulsar G12KBN generator is versatile and can power a variety of equipment.
See, it comes with dual-fuel capability, which means you can run it on two different fuels; gasoline and propane. This can be really helpful in situations where you run out of gasoline. LPG tends to be more readily available and convenient to store as well, so you won’t have to worry about running out of fuel. Anyways, the wattages it offers differ depending on the fuel you’re using.
- For gasoline: Rated watts are 9500 and peak watts are 12000
- For LPG: Rated watts are 8550 and peak watts are 10800
In addition, the 457cc 4-stroke engine of the generator is coated with a durable powder frame for protection. It’s an OHG engine with an electric start.
And, when running on gasoline, the generator gives about 12 hours of continuous power at half load courtesy of the 8-gallon fuel tank.
Plus, it comes with a variety of power outlets, allowing you to power appliances, tools, and other devices. Also, since the generator has a portable design and features drop-down handles, you can easily carry it around. The 10” never-flat wheels make it easy for you to transport the generator from one job to another.
What’s more, the automatic low-voltage regulation lets you work without hassle and worry. Other attractive features include low-oil shutoff and a 3-in-1 digital meter.
And, since the generator comes with a 1-year limited warranty, you can purchase it with peace of mind. That’s because you can always get back to the company if something goes wrong.
However, although Pulsar is offering a 1-year warranty, their customer support might not be very helpful in case of a fault or malfunction. The return takes a lot of days, so you’d have to wait a long time before you can get a replacement.
- Dual-fuel (gasoline + propane)
- 8-gallon fuel tank (12 hours on half load)
- 1-year limited warranty
- Automatic low-voltage regulation
- Slow return process
4. Generac 7117 Gp2200I W 50St Inverter
With 1700 AC running watts and 2200 AC maximum watts, this inverter generator from Generac can power a variety of demanding devices and appliances for detailing tasks.
Moreover, you can even run sensitive devices with this generator thanks to its Truepower technology. It provides clean, stable, and reliable power, which you can safely use for all kinds of devices.
And, it features a 1.2-gallon fuel tank that allows continuous operation for over 10 hours at 25% load, allowing you to work for long hours with peace of mind.
What’s more, the generator features a built-in handle that makes it easy to carry around. Plus, it offers a simple ON/OFF/Choke knob, making it easy to use.
Also, the Generac 7117 Gp2200I W 50St inverter generator offers impressive fuel economy and quiet operation thanks to the built-in economy mode. There is an LED light indicator that notifies you when you need to refuel the tank and when you’re overloading the motor.
And, if you need more power, you can always connect another inverter using the parallel kit. However, you’ll have to buy the parallel kit separately.
It’s reported that the Generac generator can be a little difficult to start. Plus, customer support might not be the best out there.
- LED light indicator (for fuel and overload)
- Parallel kit for connecting a second inverter
- 10 hours runtime at 25% load
- Can be tough to start sometimes
5. Champion Power Equipment Portable Generator
This Champion Power Equipment generator is another great option if you want to power multiple devices at the same time. Its peak watts are 9375 and running watts are 7500, allowing you to safely use any power equipment.
Moreover, after filling the 5.7-gallon fuel tank, you can get around 8 hours of continuous power from it. This means multiple jobs on a single tank. Plus, the noise level is only around 74 dBA, so it’ll run fairly quietly as well.
Generators typically aren’t easy to start when it’s cold outside. But, thanks to the Cold Start Technology of this Champion generator, you can start it easily in cold weather.
Also, there is a Volt Guard feature that protects the generator from overloads and voltage spikes. There are a variety of outputs, so you can charge several electric appliances and tools at a time.
And, the customer support and return service are great. You get a 3-year limited warranty with this generator. Not only that, but you also get a lifetime of technical support from the experts.
Although the noise levels aren’t that high, it does produce more noise than many of its competitors. 74 dBA might not be good enough if you want your generator to work silently.
- 8-hour runtime
- Cold-start technology
- Safe to use
- 3-year limited warranty
- Not very quiet
6. WEN 56380i 3800-Watt Portable Inverter Generator
This inverter generator from WEN is another impressive piece of equipment you might want to add to your detailing arsenal. With 3400 rated watts, the generator’s 212cc 4-stroke engine can handle all kinds of appliances.
Moreover, the runtime it offers is also impressive. You can expect to run the generator for over 8 hours with half load. This means you can tackle multiple jobs on a single tank.
And, before shutting down, the generator uses the fuel left in the carburetor, which tends to increase its lifespan. Plus, as it produces clean power, you can safely charge sensitive electronic devices like smartphones and tablets.
Also, the WEN generator comes with the electric start feature, allowing you to turn the engine on with the push of a button. Since it only produces around 57 decibels while working, noise isn’t going to be a problem.
In addition, it comes with built-in collapsible handles and wheels, which makes it easy to transport and store. An easy-to-read digital display provides all the information you need, for instance, voltage, wattage, runtime, fuel, and frequency.
The WEN 56380i can be a little heavy, which means it won’t be very easy to carry around.
- 8-hour average runtime
- Electric start
- Easy-to-read display
- A bit heavy
7. Westinghouse Outdoor Power Equipment Inverter Generator
With 3700 Rated Watts and 4500 Peak Watts, this inverter generator from Westinghouse can handle all kinds of appliances and tools comfortably. Starting and stopping the generator is a breeze, too. You can either use the push-button start or electric start to get it up and running. With the remote control, you can start this generator even from a distance of 260 feet.
Moreover, there is an intuitive LED display that showcases runtime, power output, voltage output, lifetime run hours, remaining run time, and fuel level.
In addition, you can even use another compatible inverter generator from the company if the power it provides isn’t enough. You can use the parallel ports to attach a second generator.
And, as it produces clean and stable power, you can safely use it to power sensitive electronics like smartphones and tablets.
Not only that, but the advanced active throttle system makes sure the engine doesn’t consume more than the necessary fuel, keeping the generator incredibly efficient. At 25% load, you can expect to get up to 18 hours from this generator. The fuel tank size is 3.4 gallons. And, as the engine isn’t always in a running condition, the sound it emanates is only around 52 decibels.
What’s more, you’re getting an impressive 3-year limited warranty on this generator, too. So, even if you encounter a problem later, you can always get back to the company for a free fix.
The electric start might pose problems.
- LED display
- Stable power
- 18 hours runtime
- Possible choke issue
8. Champion Power Equipment Dual Fuel Portable Generator
The running watts offered by this one are 3,800W, which means you can run a variety of heavy-duty appliances with ease.
One of the stand-out features of this Champion Power Equipment generator is its duel-fuel capability. You can either use gasoline or propane to run your engine. That’s a good thing because in case you run out of one fuel, you can rely on the other. Also, propane is relatively easier to find than gasoline.
Moreover, courtesy of the electric start feature, you can get it up and running with a simple toggle switch. It also keeps track of the voltage, run-time hours, and hertz to help you monitor the output. The built-in surge protector keeps the voltage at optimal levels, providing protection from overloads.
Plus, the generator comes with a 4.7-gallon fuel tank, which provides a runtime of about 14 hours on gas and 10.5 hours on propane. The sound it produces is at 68 dBA, which is fairly low and won’t cause noise pollution.
The frame under the generator might not be strong enough, so you’ll have to handle it carefully.
- 3800 running watts
- 4.7 gallon fuel tank
- 14 hours runtime on gas
- Fairly quiet
- The frame holding isn’t that strong
9. DuroMax XP10000E Gas Powered Portable Generator
If you are looking for a super-powerful portable generator for your detailing business, the DuroMax XP10000E might be the one. With 10,000 starting watts and 8,000 running watts, it’ll easily provide power to any appliance or tool you throw at it.
Moreover, it comes with an 8.3-gallon fuel tank, which means you won’t have to refill it for several hours. Another nice thing is that despite being so powerful, the engine of this generator runs fairly quietly.
And, since it’s made of metallic material, you won’t have to worry about the longevity of the generator. Although keep in mind that metal can catch rust easily, so it’s a good idea to clean the surfaces on a regular basis.
However, it would have been useful to have a load indicator on this generator. Plus, the tires are made of plastic, and might not be strong enough for the weight.
- Great for heavy-duty appliances
- 8.3-gallon fuel tank
- Metallic build
- Fairly quiet
- Plastic tires
10. Pulsar 7, 750W Dual Fuel Portable Generator
This Pulsar 7 generator also comes with dual-fuel capability and can run on gasoline and propane. Plus, you can switch between the fuel sources even while using the generator.
Moreover, the generator offers a pretty long runtime as well. The fuel tank it comes with has the capacity to hold 6.6 gallons of fuel. You can run it for up to 13 hours straight on half load.
In addition to that, the generator also comes with the electric push start feature, allowing you to start the motor easily. You also get a low-oil indicator on this one, which means you’ll know whenever your generator runs out of oil. The low-oil shut down feature keeps the generator safe.
What’s more, because its rated watts are 6250 on gas, you can use it to power a variety of heavy-duty appliances safely. On propane, the rated watts are 6000.
Also, you’ll be able to carry the generator around without much effort. That’s especially because of the fold-up handles. It comes with 10” tires that aren’t going to go flat.
The Pulsar 7 might be a little pricey.
- Electric start
- Low-oil shut down
- Fold-up handles
- Could be expensive
How to Choose the Right Generator for Mobile Detailing?
Before buying a generator for car detailing, you need to make sure it checks all the right boxes. So, let’s talk about the things you need to look at before pulling the trigger.
Probably the very first thing you need to look at is your requirements. List all the devices you are going to power with your generator. Most detailing businesses use generators to power pressure washers and vacuums. But, those might not be the only tools in your arsenal; here are other common ones:
- Electric pressure washers
- Pumps to pull water out of a tank (for pressure washers)
- Blowers and dryers
- Carpet extractors
For instance, let’s say you have a team of 2 – 3 members who’d be working on multiple appliances simultaneously. In that case, you’ll have to purchase a heavy-duty generator. But, if you don’t need a generator to feed water from a water tank, a small portable generator might do the trick.
Understand Continuous and Peak Watts
Every generator comes with one of two power ratings:
- Continuous watts (rated)
- Peak watts (maximum)
The continuous watt rating tells you the watts a generator can safely run under. It tells you what types of devices you can power with the generator. You don’t want to power a device that requires more watts than the generator’s continuous watts rating. The peak watts rating of a generator tells you the maximum watts it can handle.
Type of Generator (Conventional vs Inverter)
Each type of generator has its pros and cons, so one might be a better fit for you than the other. If you’re looking to pump water from a water tank, conventional generators would be ideal as they tend to be more powerful.
Inverter Generator Benefits
- Lightweight and portable
- More efficient
Inverter Generator Drawbacks
- Higher repair costs
- Less powerful
Conventional Generator Benefits
- Less expensive
- Larger fuel tank
- Up to 20,000 watts of power
Conventional Generator Drawbacks
- Burn more fuel
The efficiency of your generator determines how long it runs on a single tank of fuel. An efficient engine makes your generator cost-effective in the long run.
While it’s not the most important one, the noise level is another factor to consider while buying generators for car detailing. You want a generator that doesn’t make you scream to get your message to a teammate.
Weight and Portability
Of course, heavier generators are tougher to carry around, and you want your generator to be portable. Plus, look for the one that has user-friendly handles.
By now, you know about our top picks and how to choose the best one for yourself. The best generator for mobile detailing is the one that satisfies your requirements. For instance, if you don’t need to power a heavy-duty appliance, carrying around a 100-lbs. generator won’t be a smart thing to do. Consider all factors discussed in this post before deciding to buy a generator for your detailing business.
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