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When it comes to buying an RV generator, the last thing you want is a generator that makes too much noise. These are vital devices to powering your overall machine when not in motion, but having a louder device can be a huge turnoff for those wanting a relaxing experience outside their vehicle.
Thankfully, the technology around RV generators has improved massively over the years, and tons of innovations mean the quietest generator is common and accessible.
If you’ve never purchased power generators of your own before or simply need standby generators or an upgrade, there are all sorts of options for whatever your generator needs are.
Comparison of the Best Quiet RV Generators
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Aspects to Consider Before Buying
Whenever you plan a road trip, you want it to be fun and peaceful. Buying a generator for your RV could worry you as it could be noisy and disrupt your trip. Here are a few things that would help you buy the best unit for your RV:
This factor could be the most important one. No person wants to depend on their inverters highly. The fuel capacity of the generators shows their power and efficiency levels. You will need to decide which fuel capacity is best suited for you and would serve the purpose. Fuel capacity, which is lower than what’s needed, could result in only half of your appliances powering up.
Compatibility With the Environment
Some generators cannot be used in certain states since they don’t meet or qualify for the emission standards. So always use a generator inverter that is properly certified. The generator may also cause accidents like fire, so certification is important so that you know the product is reliable.
The decibel level is the measure of sound. You always need to be aware of the DB of the generator you are going to buy as that will help you know how much noise your generator is capable of making while operating.
You will always need to calculate the power you are going to generate with your inverter generator. If it produces too little power, then it will only burn out with pressure. Meanwhile, if you use a generator with too much power, then you are just wasting money. Just calculate the wattage of the appliances, which will be most used on the generator. It is especially necessary if you plan to use power devices like AC etc.
Review of the Best Quiet RV Generators
In the following section, we’ll discuss the various features, pros, and cons of each product. All of these generators were hand picked and are some of the best currently on the market.
This is a portable generator that would be perfect as a backup in your time of need. It weighs 46 pounds, has two 120 volt outlets to choose from, along with two USB ports to charge any of your smaller devices.
This generator will give you a full 12 hours of operation with only a 1.2 gallon tank of gas, provided that the efficiency mode is switched on. When turned on, you’ll hardly hear it as it only gives off 52 dBA. This unit features a three-year warranty and lifetime tech support.
The lightweight design of this product allows you to carry it around anywhere as a suitable backup generator. You’ll very rarely hear any noise coming from the product; when you do, it’ll sound similar to a gust of wind. Thanks to the energy efficiency mode, this unit can run for a full 12 hours, plenty of time to get done what you need to get done. Our only gripe is that it could offer more outlets for more diverse charging of appliances.
The next generator on our list is one of the most simple varieties of its kind on the market, yet it is still capable of powering your home appliances more efficiently. The parallel operation outlet will allow connection with another unit to increase the power outage by roughly double. The product offers two 120v AC outlets and a twist lock outlet for power tools. You’ll also find an overload alarm, an output indicator, and an oil alert.
This product has the ability to limit the amount of fuel it uses while also running for an extended amount of time. This eco-throttle mode allows your generator to last for around 20 hours on just a 1.2 gallon tank. The eco-throttle mode adjusts the speed of the engine to only just keep up with creating the amount of power necessary for each appliance. This helps reduce emissions and keep costs down.
This product offers a smart design, as the parallel operation is rare to find in any generator. The addition of the oil alert, overload alarm, and output indicator allow the user to safely monitor what’s going on. The generator is also great for its long lasting operation of around 20 hours on eco-throttle mode, which will save you plenty of money and time in the long run.
Unfortunately, this product only has two appliance outlets with an additional socket for power tools. There wasn’t any USB ports for your smaller devices like those on most other generators. The noise that comes from this device is also a problem for some; it’s not the quietest on the market at 61 dBA.
3. Champion 100263
A real hybrid champion at work, this generator will be able to operate with either gasoline or propane, making it super simple and easy to get this product up and running. The unit also holds 0.6 quarts of oil; if it runs dangerously low, the device will automatically shut down. The electric start provides convenience, along with the quick touch panel that houses all the controls at the side of the generator.
The noise that comes from this is 59 dBA, which is suitable for a backup generator. The small generator will be able to operate for up to seven and a half hours on either gasoline or propane. The unit holds two 120V power outlets along with a 12V DC outlet with a dual USB adapter. The pack also includes free lifetime tech support and a three year warranty.
The main attraction of this product is the dual fuel ability; being able to use either propane or gasoline makes life a lot easier for everyone. The smart oil sensor that shuts the device off when low is a great idea.
Considering how small the product is, 7.5 hours of operation time is more than enough for a backup generator to get the job done. The smart design makes access to the controls a lot easier. The only downside is that the 59 dBA can become irritating after a while; it is still one of the quietest, but it wouldn’t be the best for helping you sleep at night.
4. Yamaha EF2000iSv2
Similar in size to a lunch box, this extremely portable generator can provide you with 1600 running watts and 2000 running watts. This product is one of the quietest on this list as it only emits 51.5 dBA, which is as quiet as a conversation between two friends; this peace and quiet is largely due to the built-in muffler that limits any noise.
The smart throttle ability also saves plenty on power by increasing or decreasing the power outage; depending on what the minimum power is needed for each appliances, this feature also helps with reducing noise.
You wouldn’t think that this small generator would last long. However, this device actually has one of the best operation lifespans as it can work for up to 10 hours. The twin tech operation feature is also a great addition that allows you to connect two devices for double the power.
This generator has a lot to offer the owner. The small and portable nature of this device is something that will make anyone feel amazed; the device is just a bit bigger than your standard lunch box. The 51 dBA it produces is close to nothing compared to what other larger, more powerful devices emit.
The smart throttle is a feature that saves on power and is a main reason why this device can last 10 hours on a gallon of gas. Unfortunately, this product doesn’t offer the same power output that most other devices can offer. On the other hand, you can connect two together for a twin tech operation that will double that power output.
Best for the Money:
This 4000 Watt generator boasts that it is 50% quieter and 20% lighter than any other model within its price range. One of the longest lasting generators on our list, this device can survive up to 17 hours on a single gasoline tank, mainly due to the economy mode that will use all the energy in the best way possible.
For a generator of this size, 64 dBA is a great noise rating. The generator is able to offer a large 120V 30A socket, as well as two 120V smaller appliance outlets and a 12V DC outlet with a dual USB port. If you need a little bit more power, you can also connect two of the same generators to give you double the power.
The generator is 50% quieter and 20% lighter than any other generator within its range. However, this doesn’t mean that it still isn’t loud enough to hear or that it isn't heavy. The generator emits around 64 dBA, which is far louder than many other products on this list, but for something of this size, it’s quiet.
The product is quite a large generator and carrying two for the parallel function wouldn’t be practical. For such a large generator, being able to last 17 hours is a great feature; there are also a few power sockets for different appliances.
Generac 7117 GP2200i
What Recent Buyers Report
Buyers have loved Generac 7117 GP2200i. It is extremely lightweight and reliable. It is also quiet, making buyers more satisfied. A few also liked the efficient design. It is also very easy to use and good solid power.
Why it Stands Out to Us
Carrying tons of things on a road trip is always a problem, but carrying the Generac 7117 GP2200i generator will not add to your weight as it weighs only 46 pounds. It has an efficient, user-friendly design, featuring indicator LED lights and USB port.
The economy mode ensures excellent fuel run. It has 1700 running watts and 2200 surge watts. Efficient technology allows clean and stable power ideal for sensitive gadgets and appliances.
Generac 7117 GP2200i is a highly reliable generator. It is the most lightweight and portable generator, has excellent features, and excellent running time. Users have loved using it as it offers many benefits, providing convenience to the user.
Best Quiet Portable Generator For RV:
What Recent Buyers Report
According to recent reports, buyers have enjoyed using the Westinghouse iGen1200 portable generator. It is compact, lightweight, and easy to store. Also, it is a high-quality, powerful generator that can power almost all RV appliances.
Why it Stands Out to Us
Westinghouse iGen1200 is a high-quality generator and never disappoints. It is a gas-powered inverter generator. It is extremely portable as it only weighs 33 pounds. It works quietly with a noise level that is below 52dBA.
It has 1,200W peak wattage, allowing your RV systems to be powered up without a problem. It is also parallel-capable, allowing you to connect two inverters together to the generators. It has an efficiency mode and operates using a 54cc OHV engine. Also, it has two USB ports, allowing you to connect and charge compatible devices.
If you are looking for a generator with excellent features, Westinghouse iGen1200 is a suitable choice. It is a high-quality, lightweight, and functionally-tested product, making user’s RVing life easy and comfortable.
What Makes a Generator Quiet Compared to Others?
There are several ways to limit the noise produced by your generator. For example, the noise coming from your generator will often be due to vibrations when the unit is turned on. Many generators have a special bracket built onto their exterior that will keep the device off the ground.
Some generators are quieter because they aren’t as powerful. The best generators have their own soundproofing that will limit the noise emitted from the AC. Some people even go the lengths of building their own sound proofing box that you just place over the generator.
What Size Generator Do I Need For My RV?
An RV generator can be any physical size, but the thing to look into is what the amps and maximum watts are. Many larger trailers can reach highs of 4000 watts, while many more conservative vehicles and drivers may only need 2000 watts. It varies massively based on your needs and specific caravan, but you should ideally be aiming for one around that range, and you don’t generally need a generator that’s significantly higher than your recommended wattage.
Perks of Investing in a Top of the Line Quiet RV Generator
There are a plethora of benefits to purchasing the best quiet generator on the market. You’ll want to find the best possible product without sacrificing the peace and quiet of RV life. The following section will show you exactly what you can look forward to, or perhaps what you’re missing out on.
One of the most obvious perks is that you’ll have peace and quiet to which TV or listen to your music. There are plenty of generators out there that are so loud you can barely hear yourself think. By investing in a quiet generator you’ll never have to worry about using subtitles to watch your favorite movie.
No Noise Pollution
When you are travelling around in your RV and trying to catch a glimpse of the fine species that nature has to offer, you’ll easily scare away any possible sightings with a noisy generator. This noise pollution can greatly affect the local wildlife to the point of certain bird species relocating or failing to nest and breed.
By investing in a top of the line generator, you’ll save plenty of money by just going for one that has suitable noise proofing. Many people will go for the cheaper option of buying a loud, cheaper model and then trying to fix the noise themselves with a DIY sound proofing system.
If a generator has the smart throttle feature, then it tends to make less noise. This feature allows the unit to decrease the output level. Also, if the engine is not running at full load capacity, it will make less noise by varying engine speed to run the required load compared to an engine running at full load capacity.
Factors such as air density around the generator, alternator making more mechanical noise, the structure of the generator, cooling fans, etc. are important to know as they add to the generator's noise levels.
How Much Do Quiet RV Generators Cost?
Generally speaking, your RV generator cost is going to be proportional to the noise it makes. The more expensive it is, the quieter it’ll likely be since the parts will be more recent and higher quality. As a result, these are the general price points you’ll see for most generators based on their typical noise levels.
$200 - $400
Around this price point will not usually contain many generators, but instead, products more likely described as power stations. These are often electric and lithium batteries that are more for electronics than heavier appliances, such as the impressive Newpora Portable Power Station. While they’re not what you might want in a quiet generator, they can be great alternatives if you want a quiet portable generator but don’t need a long or intensive charge.
$400 - $600
With the price range between $400 and $600, you start getting a much wider variety of standard fuel tank and propane engines, but the noise level is standard, especially at peak power. Newer models are generally quieter, thanks to generator technology, but stronger models like the Rainier R4400DF Dual Fuel Generator will make much more noise than a specifically designed quiet RV generator.
If you truly want a remarkably quiet portable RV generator for your travel trailer, you’re going to want to start looking at around $600 or more. The quietest portable generator is far bulkier to dampen or produce lighter sound, but they’re worth the purchase and end up being far less disruptive than products at the lower ranges mentioned earlier. Many like the WEN 57380i even come in multiple watt strengths and sizes, meaning you can get a much more specialized generator than you likely could for the lower and louder product range mentioned earlier.
How to Choose a Quiet RV Generator
An RV generator is always going to make some noise, regardless of the model you buy. An RV owner will always want a generator that makes minimum noise. Here are some characteristics that can help you choose a quiet RV generator:
Size and Quality of The Engine
The sound of the unit varies with the change in power output. You first need to see how many appliances will depend on the generator and then find one suitable for your power range. More power means more DBs and a louder generator, but the noise could vary from model to model.
Inverter Generator Technology
Inverter generators are designed to efficiently generate currents but with smaller engines, allowing a reduction in noise.
Best Uses For a Quiet RV Generator
There are multiple reasons why you should bring a generator with you in your RV, as there are literally hundreds of activities that require power. Here are a few that we think require a quiet generator:
Night Time Camping
How many times have you wanted to just sit outside in your deck chair and just relax, but been stopped by dark night. A quiet generator will be able to power a few lights for you to relax in peace without worrying about the dark or a noisy generator.
One of the most important uses for a generator is entertainment. Being able to watch TV or power your appliances is an important part of RV life. Having the ability to do this while also not suffering from any noise is a godsend. How can you be expected to watch a movie with 80 dBA of noise coming from the generator.
Charge Your RV Battery
This isn’t necessarily a benefit of a quiet generator, but rather a benefit of having a quality generator. If you had a backup generator, you’d be able to use this in emergencies like when your RV battery dies, which it often can do. If you have a powerful enough generator, you could be back up and running within 30 minutes.
As daunting and intimidating as a camping generator can be, you’ll likely be surprised how easy they can be to use to power an RV air conditioner or portable AC unit. Despite all the functions and capabilities, there are tons of resources you can find that will tell you how to use your specific product, the starting watts, and its peak power. As long as you treat it with care and take proper precautions, a quiet RV generator will make your travel trailer journeys significantly smoother.
People Also Ask
Below are some more questions answered to further help you know more about RV generators:
What Makes an Inverter Generator Quieter?
Many factors can make a device quieter, but the main reason these generators are quiet is that they have smaller engines with greater power options. It inherently won’t make as much noise as a standard generator, but you can lower its power output to strain it less and provide even less noise if you don’t need as much energy from your generator.
How Many dB is a Quiet Generator?
dB stands for decibels, which is a measure of sound. A generator with a rating of 50 to 60 dB is more or less quiet. Any number more than this may sound loud. However, a standard generator will make a sound over that level.
Do RV Parks Require Your Generator to Be Quiet?
Regardless of the brand you buy, a standard generator will always make noise. Different RV parks and campgrounds have different policies that allow generators to operate in particular boundaries. Many have generator-free areas for campers who want to enjoy noise-free areas.
Generally, campers are given quiet hours, which allows them to operate their generators only in those hours. Generators should also be less than 60 dB, but this number may vary depending on park policies.
Is 69 dB Loud For a Generator?
A standard generator is normally around 60 dB. The higher the dB, the higher the noise it will make. A vacuum cleaner is around 80 dB, making it louder. However, for comparison, 40-70 dB is considered bearable noise. 80-90 dB is considered annoyingly loud, and 100-120 dB is considered extremely loud.
One generator which is quieter for someone may be louder for someone else. It also depends on how close the generator is to you.
How Do I Make My RV Generator Even Quieter?
You can try and buy the quietest generator, but it will still make noise. There are some options you can try to make your generator quieter than it is. You can buy a noise reduction box or a generator muffler, or make the onboard generator compartment soundproof.