4 Best Diesel Generator For Home – Our Top Picks for 2021
If you are pondering about purchasing a diesel generator but aren’t sure if such a generator is the right choice for you, our guide might be able to help you!
First things first, we want to introduce you to our Top 4 of the best diesel generators for home use out there. Next, because we know how much people can struggle when shopping for a generator, we are going to talk about the benefits of diesel generators and give you a couple of tips to help you choose the best one.
But first, let’s have a look at our 4 picks!
4 Best Diesel Generators For Home Reviewed
When picking diesel generators for review, we’ve tried to select unique, distinct generators. Our goal was to diversify our top and hopefully meet the needs of as many people as possible.
Below, you will find a brief overview of each generator. For every pick, we’re going to highlight the key features and downsides (if any) to let you know what you are looking at.
1. Generac XD5000E (6864) Diesel Portable Generator
Up first on our review is the XD5000E portable diesel generator from Generac. This portable generator is a great pick for heavy use cases and even industrial applications.
With surge/running wattage of 5,500/5,000, XD5000E isn’t anything spectacular at first glance. You can find up to 10-12kW generators for a cheaper price.
However, these high-power generators are unlikely to have the same quality of electricity as XD5000E. Thanks to a THD of less than 5-6%, this generator can safely run sensitive electronics.
Unlike the typical household portable generator, XD5000E also has an idle mode. In this mode, the generator’s motor will run at a lower RPM to conserve fuel. This mode isn’t as flexible as the throttle control in inverter generators, but it’s better than nothing.
Speaking of the motor, XD5000E sports a huge 435cc air-cooled engine with industrial-grade components. This bulky motor is noisy and makes the XD5000E generator really hefty, but when it comes to heavy use cases, it should perform wonderfully.
The frame of the Generac XD5000E generator is tough as well. Fully welded, the 1-1/4-inch steel tubing should easily take abuse and protect the generator’s key components. The integrated eye in the center also allows for easy lifting too.
Generac also offers an optional portability kit with wheels, handles, and a support foot. This kit somewhat adds to the price of the generator, but given how difficult this thing is to transport, it may be worth it.
In terms of convenience, the Generac diesel generator is pretty nice as well. It has an electric push starter for quick startup, and it also features a backup pull starter. Thanks to a compression release lever, XD5000E is pretty easy to start in low ambient temps too.
The push starter requires a battery though, which you will have to buy separately. And we do recommend that you buy a battery because the pull starter isn’t too reliable.
The set of outlets in the Generac diesel generator is pretty nice, and you can also switch between 120 and 240V for one of them. The control board additionally has an hour meter with maintenance reset tracks to allow you to keep an eye on the generator’s usage.
Finally, XD5000E has a 12-gallon fuel tank that is advertised to provide up to 32.4 hours of runtime at 50% load – pretty nice.
In conclusion, XD5000E is a great choice for heavy and even professional needs. Particularly, it’s a great choice if you want portable clean power anywhere, be it in your backyard or out in the wild camping.
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2. Generac Protector RD03022ADAE 30kW Standby Generator
If you want enough power to supply your entire home with electricity, then strongly consider the Generac Protector RD03022ADAE standby diesel generator. Although this generator’s price tag is very steep, it’s actually rather affordable for its power output and features.
With max continuous power of 30kW, the Generac standby generator will be able to satisfy the needs of most US households. Now, you’ll have to determine the total wattage of your appliances on your own, but for most people, 30kW should be more than enough, especially if you manage your power consumption well.
As you’d expect, the Protector standby diesel generator delivers clean power with a THD of less than 5%. So you should be able to safely operate sensitive electronics and electrical appliances.
Note that this particular generator delivers single-phase power. There also is a three-phase variant available, which may be what some of our readers need.
Generac made the installation and maintenance of this generator rather easy. Its internal components are easily accessible to ensure quick setup, and the breaker and control board are placed in clear view to allow you to check the unit’s condition at a glance.
The control board of this generator is pretty easy to use too. It features an LCD display with a multilingual UI and backlit, color-coded buttons that are easy to use in low light.
Notably, this generator also boasts Generac’s Quiet-Test mode where the unit runs a quiet, low-RPM test weekly to ensure proper operation.
The Protector diesel generator line has some other features that we suggest you investigate yourself. All in all, for home or even workshop use, this generator provides plenty of power at a rather low price point.
WHAT WE LIKED
WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE
3. Cummins Onan QD 8000 8kW Diesel Commercial Generator
The Onan QD 8000 diesel generator from Cummins is a wonderful choice for heavy applications.
Powered at 8,000 watts, this generator probably won’t be able to run your entire home, but it should be good enough to keep its vital systems running. It might also be able to entirely power small properties.
QD 8000 delivers pure sine-wave single-phase electricity to safely run sensitive electronics. Thanks to the computer-controlled engine RPM, this generator will also deliver as much power as you need while minimizing noise and fuel consumption.
The Onan QD 8000 generator is filled with safety features as well. Among its highlights are the waterproof connector, over-speed & overload safety, one-touch stop, low oil pressure safety, and a few other things.
The mounting system of the QD 8000 diesel generator is also designed to reduce vibration, which will increase its service life.
Usage and maintenance are simplified for buyers as well thanks to features like self-diagnostics, low-maintenance components, easily accessible maintenance points, and more.
Note, however, that unlike the Generac standby diesel generator, QD 8000 doesn’t have any fuel tanks. You’ll have to take care of fuel storage and supply on your own.
Additionally, the Onan QD 8000 generator is very steeply priced, but given its features and design, it’s worth the money if your use cases are highly demanding.
WHAT WE LIKED
WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE
4. Multiquip DA7000SSA3 Diesel Generator
Finally, we have the DA7000SSA3 diesel generator from Multiquip. This is an even heavier-duty generator than Onan QD 8000, offering more advanced controls and safety features. It’s powered 1,000 watts lower and is priced higher than the Onan generator, but its features might be worth it for you.
The first thing to catch the eye in this diesel generator is the 120/240V output. Though for most needs, 120V is enough, if you have any tools that need 240V, then this generator is the only suitable standby option on this top.
The control panel of the DA7000SSA3 generator is also remarkable. It features a wide range of diagnostic tools such as a voltmeter and an hour meter, controls like idle/full power switches, and it additionally boasts a few single-phase receptacles for quick tool connection.
According to Multiquip, this diesel generator is also OSHA- and NEC-compliant and is thus suitable for professional uses. The safety features of the Multiquip generator are nice too, including a GFCI circuit breaker, auto-shutoff, full receptacle covers, and a few other things.
This generator also has an integrated 6.6-gallon fuel tank. However, if you are planning to make full use of this generator’s potential, then you will obviously need a larger fuel container.
WHAT WE LIKED
WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE
Why Choose A Diesel Generator?
Before moving to our buyer’s guide, we think that it’s worth talking about the benefits of diesel generators over gas generators.
This section will help you better understand the pros and cons of diesel generators. Once you are done with this part, you should understand whether a diesel generator is truly the best option for you.
So, compared to gas generators, diesel generators offer the following benefits:
Of course, diesel generators aren’t downside-free as well. Here are their drawbacks:
Higher cost. Diesel generators cost more upfront than gasoline generators.
Higher fuel price. Diesel typically costs more than gasoline. In the long run though, the higher fuel efficiency may still make diesel generators cheaper to run.
Major failures in light use cases. Diesel generators and engines generally don’t like to sit without load for a long time. When left idle for long periods, diesel engines require exercising to keep all parts in order.
So all in all, diesel generators are ideal for heavy use cases when you need backup or off-grid power often.
If you aren’t going to need backup or portable power too frequently, then there’s really no point in overpaying for a diesel generator. Although diesel generators are efficient and highly durable, their benefits only get revealed under heavy use in the long run.
What To Look For When Shopping For The Best Home Diesel Generator?
No matter what you want – a small diesel generator or something that can power an entire home – make sure to understand your needs first. There’s a lot to think about before investing in a diesel generator, so you ought to determine why you are buying a diesel generator.
Remember the points we’ve talked about earlier, do more research if necessary, and you should be able to invest your money right!