Duromax XP4850EH Generator Review

There’s no getting past your reliance on electrical power. Even when you’re living off-grid, you need some of the basic comforts of modern life. If nothing else, you’ll want to chase the shadows away so that you don’t grow dependent on the setting sun. Stop being a slave to the solar cycle by purchasing a portable generator. Intended as a backup power provider or an out-of-town convenience, the DuroMax XP4850EH is your reliable electrical power source, one that comes with some cool extras. Let’s start with the key features, beginning with the versatility of the dual fuel capability.
Let’s face it, you can load a mobile electrical generator with all the bells and whistles, but what you’re really seeking is a reliable power source, one that chugs powerfully to life as soon as you trigger the starter. The DuroMax XP4850EH offers dependable operation from the moment you unbox the 130-lb heavy-duty frame. On the label, you’ll see the model number for the product, a code that translates into pure starting Watts. Next, you’re tempted to check out the dual fuel capability, but let’s look at the machine specs first. There are 3 power outlets installed on a clearly labelled control panel here, plus a key start control. What else is there to discover on and around the XP4850EH?


  • Dimensions: 19 x 24 x 19 in
  • Weight: 130-lbs
  • Wattage: 4850-Watts starting and 3850 running
  • Output: 120-Volt/240-Volt
  • Engine Features: 7.0 HP OHV engine (Air-cooled)
  • Engine Displacement: 210-cc
  • Fuel: 4-Gallons of Propane/Gasoline
  • Tank Run Time: 20-hours on Propane and 8-hours on Gasoline
  • Noise Level: 69-dB
  • Integrated Inverter: No
  • Starter Type: Keyed electric start and a backup recoil start

A perfect backup generator for emergency situations. It also easily handles larger appliances, after-hours work, and recreational activities.

Power Output

The DuroMax XP4850EH positions 3 power outlets on the far right of its easy to read control panel. Check out the two 120-Volt, 20-Amp, sockets. They feed alternator power to the rugged 3-prong outlets, so you know your chosen appliance will snugly slide into these sockets and hold firm. Positioned one atop the other, they don’t take up much space on the control panel, which is just as well because a rounded 120-Volt/240-Volt, 30-Amp twist-lock socket also has a place of prominence on that electrical board. Capable of satisfying the most demanding backup power duties, that latter outlet makes a fine emergency power lifeline.

Engine & Fuel

Before the rapid-fire descriptions about fuel consumption figures, you should be thinking about the third fluid member of the family. Sure, the dual fuel feature steals the limelight, but that major selling point won’t be worth much if the portable generator lacks lubrication. First of all, don’t worry, for the engine is protected. There’s a low oil indicator located under the key ignition control on the far left of the control panel. Pairing up with that indicator, a low oil shutoff automatically stops the engine if the lubricant level is dangerously low.

Incidentally, this model does NOT ship with oil in the crankcase, so purchase a can of SAE 10W-30 before you take it for a test run. The oil capacity for the XP4850EH is 20 fluid ounces.

This is where your investment pays off, for this little beast features dual fuel adaptability. In other words, you can fill the 4-gallon fuel tank with gasoline. Just stop at a local gas station on your way to your offroad destination or work site. Alternatively, you have the option to fill her up with propane, a resource that’s simple to acquire when you’re camping. Remember, propane doesn’t go bad, not like standard gasoline, so you can store a few bottles on a shelf and know time is on your side. Since natural disasters are difficult to predict, this long shelf-life feature equips you with an on-hand fuel supply, so you’ll always be prepared for an emergency.

Better yet, natural gas burns slow, so expect 20-hours of bright lights and electrically generated comfort when you hook up a readily available BBQ tank. Incidentally, if a natural disaster does occur, the gas pumps are going to be hard to access. A line of vehicles will choke the fuel depot, so wouldn’t it be wonderful to skip that line entirely? Instead of shopping for hard-to-find gasoline during an emergency, pick up a few canisters of camping propane. Of course, should cheap gasoline be available, you can look forward to 8-hours of reliable power output. For true backup power during an emergency, this hybrid fuel solution could make all the difference in the world.

Please note, these fuel runtimes are based on a typical power loading scenario. You’d load this portable generator with fifty-percent of its full load to receive these extended output periods. If the backup unit is pushed harder, expect a subsequent reduction in those time-based figures.

Starting Mechanism

Don’t worry about fumbling for a manual start mechanism, not even when it’s 1 AM in the morning, because you can literally ignite the lights. Yes, the DuroMax XP4850EH is equipped with a key start ignitor, which means you’ll be activating this compact 7 horsepower, 4-stroke engine with the flick of a wrist. The OHV engine catches, roars to life, and spits out smoothly regulated current when the ignition key is turned. Effortless electric starting, courtesy of an onboard 12-Volt battery, is backed up by an incorporated recoil mechanism.

Included on the control panel, red and black terminals provide a 12-Volt DC charging port for the battery. Should the key start fizzle out, the battery can be charged at these terminals. Still, the provision of a reserve manual starter shows the manufacturer is covering every base. If that electric key start should fail, which is unlikely, then you’ll just switch over to the 1-pull manual recoil. And don’t distress yourself with thoughts of a tough manual start, for this is an E-Z-pull mechanism, something DuroMax has installed so that even a weak arm can get the portable generator purring away in no time at all.

Plugs & Control Panel

It used to be, in days gone by, that you needed an engineering background to operate a backup generator. Today, emergency blackout scenarios have ordinary folks shopping for their own portable power solutions. Purchased in case of an emergency or just to satisfy the needs of power-hungry recreational activity, the chosen model needs an easy to interpret control panel. The DuroMax XP4850EH delivers that important feature.

Dominating the control panel, an analog voltmeter displays the current output. To the left of that meter, large-print writing walks you through the dual-fuel feature. Further to the left, the electric key start control is waiting. Don’t turn it just yet, not until you’ve finished checking out the control panel. Next up, you’re looking at the plugs and electrical distribution section. On the far right, a chunky circuit breaker protects the output section. There’s two 120-Volt, 20-Amp sockets, one atop the other. They’re three-pronged outlets, as you’d expect. Further to the right, a 120-Volt/240-Volt twist lock outlet is on call for your heavier equipment. For power tools and large appliances, this lockable outlet supplies 30-Amps of quietly potent power.

Noise Level

Speaking of quiet, this backup power provider is designed to mute noise. Expect a 69-dB sound envelope when the machine settles into its rhythm. That’s something of a noise sweet spot, one that ensures sleep or an uninterrupted campfire ghost story. Of course, should you get too close to the operating machinery, the noise level will increase. But common sense dictates giving the machinery a little space to breathe, so it’s unlikely you’ll be disturbed, not unless the generator is pushed to the point that it’s fully loaded. Even then, the engine and alternator won’t produce an overly loud noise profile.

The oversized muffler fitted on the DuroMax XP4850EH is responsible for governing the exhaust noise. Included on that noise-stifling muffler, a built-in spark arrestor assures safe operational engine performance, even in the dried forest area. Again, the DuroMax engineers have gone the extra mile. The in-built spark arrestor is there to prevent combustion flashes from escaping the powerful air-cooled OHV engine, so this generator is outfitted with a highly desirable wildfire prevention feature. If your offroad or work activities are carried out during the drier summer months, that’s a very welcome feature indeed.

Parallel Operation

Don’t purchase this generator if you’re looking to double your power output, for this conventional engine/alternator type does not feature this particular capability. Just to re-empathize the point, you cannot hook a second DuroMax XP4850EH in parallel with your first unit. If you need more power, consider a portable generator with more Wattage or read up on Inverter Generators.


Expect to find this dual fuel portable generator for $588.25 from Amazon.com. Originally valued at $700, that’s a shade more than $111 less than the larger monetary figure. You can look high and low, into the darkest crevices of the internet, but you’re not going to find this versatile genny for much less than $500.

Available for:

Home Depot: $588.25
Amazon.com: $588.25
eBay.com: $499.99

Consider putting a little effort into exploring sites that have ongoing sales. Of course, buyer beware, you should play this game with a business-savvy attitude. Look for a full warranty, at the very least.

Otherwise, remember that this is not an inverter generator, so there’s no inbuilt computer for balancing the generated power waveforms. What you do have is a robust tubular steel frame, a tough engine in a cast-iron sleeve, and a vibration-dampening four-point mounting system. At the above price points, that’s a feature-rich package you’re buying.

What’s in The Box

Everything is assembled except for the wheels. Supported by a solid shipping block, the engine shouldn’t move, even if the package is coming from a thousand miles away. Next, you’re also provided with an assembly wrench, a screwdriver, a spark plug wrench, and a battery. That last item is obviously there to power your key start feature, so refer to the included operating manual for more information on this capability.

Finally, this tough tubular steel frame weighs in at a respectable 130-lbs, which is too heavy for all but the most musclebound camper to lift. Two people can comfortably shift it into place behind a cabin or work site, but why go through all of this back-breaking effort when there’s a set of wheels inside the box? If the next hurricane Katrina should come roaring out of the ocean, make sure those wheels are attached. You’ll also be glad of the bolt-on handle and the solid rubber wheels, complete with their shiny steel trim.


It’s the job of the toughened tubular steel chassis to physically protect all of those feature-rich components. In the same spirit of product guardianship, the Duromax Generator Warranty backs up that physical shield by extending certain documented assurances. Operate your newly acquired DuroMax XP4850EH with confidence, for it comes complete with a 30-day unit replacement warranty and a 1-year warranty on all parts.

Of course, the inclusion of this warranty isn’t an excuse to mistreat this high-wattage portable generator. Maintain the engine, change the oil, and check for clear airflow. Yes, this is a low-maintenance machine, so these maintenance routines won’t occupy all of your time, but they do need to be carried out if you’re to keep the equipment working at its best. Finally, do fill her up with gasoline at least once a month, because the seals inside the engine can become dry and brittle if the XP4850EH is operated exclusively on propane.

Pros and Cons


  • High-wattage output. Rated for 3850-kW running
  • Dual Fuel versatility. The engine runs on gasoline or propane
  • Features a primary electric start and a backup recoil start mechanism
  • Includes a low oil warning light and a low oil shutoff
  • Runs quietly due to an oversized muffler (69-dB)
  • Strong steel frame and solid rubber wheels


  • The dual fuel feature does nudge the price higher
  • Noise levels increase when a heavy load is applied
  • Not an inverter generator
  • This is not a CARB certified device

Customer Reviews

The savvy consumers on Amazon.com have their own opinions about the DuroMax XP4850EH. On the whole, those views are entirely positive. Still, there’s always a product-relevant point that pops up several times, one that deserves a mention. For instance, this portable generator is being picked up by folk who’ve spent time in disaster zones. They know, without doubt, that gasoline becomes a rare commodity after a hurricane or earthquake, so the option to use propane is viewed with some appreciation.

As for the nagging negatives, small though they are, they are mentioned. A loud noise output was reported by one consumer, although that complaint could be limited to this particular model. Perhaps the generator even requires a little break-in time to develop that quieter noise profile? The last niggling doubt concerns the 20-hour oil change period, which was considered a tad too short by several owners. Otherwise, the 5-star reviews adorn this popular generator with praise, which is just what you need when you’re shopping for that reliable hurricane season backup unit.


Even if you’re away from your home for a long weekend, you want to know you’re carrying a reliable portable electricity source, something that will just work at the press of a button or the twist of a key. Well, according to this review, and many others, that’s exactly what you’re getting here, with 3850-Watts of smoothly regulated power uncoiling from the depths of the equipment as soon as the key starter is turned.

Mounted within the ruggedly armoured metal frame, the air-cooled 7 HP OHV engine sips gasoline or propane while generating 3850-Watts of running electrical power. And, as every generator or camping expert should know, that propane has the longer shelf-life, plus it’s an easier fuel to locate during an emergency. Did we forget the running time for the propane? Well, expect 20-hours of lights and large-appliance power when a high-capacity propane tank is coupled to the XP4850EH. That beats the 8-hour gasoline runtime.

From a practical standpoint, you have the tools to assemble this portable generator as soon as it’s unboxed. Out in the field, the oil may need changing if you’re operating the gear for an extended period, so do pay attention to the low-oil indicator. But feel a sense of peace settle onto your shoulders, too, for this deceptively powerful portable generator (Nearly two-foot square) is designed to satisfy any conceivable power outage scenario. If you’re camping, enjoy compact power provision, enough to power a medium-sized air conditioner or a fridge/freezer combo. But if you’re preparing for a disaster, know that you’re stored Duromax XP4850EH generator has the goods to deliver big time, especially when it’s stored with a bank of propane canisters.

PowerPro 56101 Generator Review

Introduction & Overview

Inexpensive and portable, the PowerPro 56101 has been built to bring a little convenience into the lives of cable cutters. In plain English, this pint-sized generator is small but it’s also your perfect light-up the night companion. A handle is fitted to the top of the toolbox-like frame, which means it’s manageable. In fact, it’s so undersized that it can be picked up with a single hand. The big question, then, is whether the features built into the PowerPro 56101 are equally undersized. Equipped with a 2-stroke, 1000-Watt gasoline engine, this is a small package that obviously has a lot to prove. So, besides being able to trip you up in the dark, what can this backup generator do for you today?

Remember that all too human need you have for electrical power? Disasters happen, power failures force candles and never-ending board games out of dirty drawers, and all your regularly scheduled activities have to wait for the daylight hours. If you purchase a compact PowerPro 56101 backup generator, those once unavoidable inconveniences melt away. Small it may be, but big things do come in small packages, which is a maxim the manufacturers must have had in mind when they designed this portable device. A robust metal cover tops the generator. The red sheet metal bolts to a rugged black plastic block, a 12 x 14 x 13.5-inch chunk of sturdy material that’s clad in controls. Finally, on the sides, round black engine cowlings complete the power-packed profile. On one of those rounded cowlings, the right side if you’re looking at the control panel head on, the T-shaped pull start handle waits.


  • Dimensions: 12 x 14 x 13.5 inches
  • Weight: A light 35.5-lbs
  • Wattage: 1000-Watts starting and 900-Watts running
  • Output: 12-Volt DC and 120-Volt AC
  • Engine Features: 2.0 HP 2-Stroke
  • Engine Displacement: 63-cc
  • Fuel: 1-Gallon of Gasoline
  • Tank Run Time: Approximately 5-hours
  • Noise Level: 60-dB
  • Integrated Inverter: No
  • Starter Type: Manual recoil

Small but reliable, the PowerPro 56101 generator is well-suited as a companion for your camping excursions, minor work projects, and tailgating adventures.

Power Output

Let’s face it, when you’re dealing with a small backup power unit, you’re probably not expecting much. Happily, the PowerPro 56101 generator does somehow manage to exceed your expectations on practically every front. Two output sockets are mounted on the lower left side of the control panel. Farthest to the left, etched in white lines, a two-pin 12-Volt DC power outlet waits. While it’s possible to charge a large 12-Volt battery with this device, it’s not an application that can be recommended, as the engine may run roughly if a selected 12-Volt load draws excessive quantities of electrical current.

Meanwhile, connected to the 120-Volt socket to the right of that low-voltage outlet, all kinds of appliances snap solidly into place. This is a three-pronged power outlet, so the PowerPro 56101 is going to require grounding before that third pin can be safely used. Otherwise, this is the only standard power AC OUT provided, which is just as you’d expect since the generated power can’t exceed the 900-Watt mark. Nevertheless, working with 120-Volts, you should be able to energize all of your home essentials. A small refrigerator, a couple of lightweight power tools, even a portable heater or air conditioner, all of these items will operate off of this remarkably compact generator. Just remember, however, that the size of these appliances should lean towards the lighter end of the application gamut. Use discretion, opt for devices that don’t draw more than 7.5-Amps, and don’t overload the generator.

Engine & Fuel

You want less preamble and more hard facts, so skip past the rhetoric and hit those generator specs head on. First of all, this is a gasoline powered device. The compact fuel tank fills with one gallon of unleaded gas. But that’s not the end of the matter. No, this is a 2-stroke engine, which means there’s no separate oil reservoir lubricating the machine parts. Instead of that two fluid engine architecture, the oil and gasoline are directly mixed then poured into the fuel tank.

So what does the fuel/oil mix mean for this 2-stroke, 63-cc engine? Well, the mix has to be correctly blended. If the lubricating component is low, expect engine wear. Conversely, if the oil mix is too rich, the engine could foul or emit a nasty cloud of smoke, a dirty great fume trail that other campers will view with some horror. Avoid this predicament by using a 50:1 gas-to-oil mix. Strangely enough, some owners of the PowerPro 56101 believe this mix is too high, so a 32:1 blend may work out better.

Starting Mechanism

You’ll have to get on one knee to get down to the same level as this popular portable generator. Face the control panel, extend your right hand, and feel the T-shaped pull-string handle settle into your palm. It’s a manual activation mechanism, a thin cord that looks suspiciously breakable. And there have been reports of recoil cord breakage, unfortunately. Still, breakage problems aside, the pull rope quickly starts the generator engine. The 4 stabilizing rubber pads that support this toolbox-sized housing help, for you’re going to feel a tad off-balance when you’re down on one knee, tugging at that plastic rope. 

This seems like a good moment to talk about affordability. All things considered, the PowerPro 56101 portable generator is a sound investment. Granted, there are a few drawbacks to mull over, but there are no cut corners when it comes to product reliability. No, if there are any manufacturing shortcuts, they’re located in that slightly substandard recoil rope starter. Take care, stabilize the 56101 on its rubberized feet, and pull sharply but carefully. If you adhere to that starting routine, your camp or work site will soon light up with 900-Watts of shadow-chasing power.

Plugs & Control Panel

Somehow, despite the small form factor, the control panel on this perfectly capable power generator manages to reserve plenty of space for its various control switches and a single electrical meter. That’s right, once more, you’re getting more than you’d expect from such a small and affordable portable generator. 

There are the two outlets to check out. On the far left, right at the bottom of the control panel, a DC 12-Volt power outlet is installed as a two-pin socket. Directly to the right of that first power outlet, a standard AC OUT 120-Volt three-pin socket is on hand to power all of those essential appliances you have packed in the back of your vehicle. Finally, mounted above both outlets, a little square voltmeter relays output voltage. 

The package of three outlet components is easy enough to spot, for they’re outlined in white by a series of etched lines. One thing, though, what are those two covered buttons positioned above each outlet? Well, these are circuit resets. Should a DC or AC circuit generate a potentially hazardous current spike, these safety mechanisms will ‘trip’ and isolate the power source. Judging by this provision, safety is regarded as an essential feature on the PowerPro 56101.

Embedded operational instructions are stamped into the middle of the uppermost panel section. Just to the right of that bulleted list, a sunken square of panel real estate hosts the sealed engine switch and a choke control. That metal fuel/air mixer slides horizontally, as described in the starting sequence listed in the ‘Operation Summary.’ As for the last item on that control surface, it occupies the bottom half of the panel. This is the ‘Air Cleaner’ compartment, an enclosure that holds a sponge-like intake cleaning element. Replace that filter every 50-hours, as recommended by the maintenance section in the user’s manual.

There’s not a lot of controls on the panel, but all of the important ones are covered. An extra 120-Volt AC outlet would have been nice, but that addition is hard to justify, especially when you see the 900-Watt operational limits of this portable generator. Also, a fuel gauge might just have been a handy extra, but the 1-gallon fuel tank does compensate for this omission by providing surprisingly extended run times.

Noise Level

Is the PowerPro 56101 noisy? It’s a simple enough question, one that you probably think you already know the answer to, right? After all, that compact frame should produce less engine noise than a larger generator. Well, the answer isn’t quite that simple. If you go by the features list, the quoted noise rating is recorded as a more than satisfying 60-dB at 22-feet, which will keep even the fussiest camp host content. 

On top of the low noise feature, a muffler-equipped exhaust system further attenuates the engine. Still, not everyone is in agreement here. Some users have left negative reviews for this small backup power machine, reviews that complain of excessive noise production. Also, probably because of the 2-stroke engine design, the governing mechanism built into the engine can sometimes run a little rough. Size comes to the rescue again, however, for even if the sound pollution is just a tad more than expected, this is a condensed package. Just use a smartly selected placement strategy to keep the noise levels low.

Parallel Operation

Admittedly, this would be a handy feature to have onboard an electricity producing device that generates less than 1-kW of power, but this is not an advanced piece of equipment, nor is it an inverter generator.


Without a doubt, this popular piece of equipment has become a best-seller due to its highly affordable price tag. A balance is struck between the sheer number of useful features and cost, so the mobile genny occupies a perfect spot within a crowded product market. To put it another way, this low-priced device has earned its place as one of the finest 1000-Watt generators on the market. Here are a few suggested price points, as collected from some lead online sellers, that prove this point.
Available for:

Amazon.com: $164.66
Home Depot: $131.06
eBay.com: $139.95

Shop elsewhere if this sub-kilowatt drawback is a dealbreaker. But do know what you’re missing out on when you’re on the brink of rejecting this top-selling portable generator. It’s small, of course, but the PowerPro 56101 more than makes up for its output failings by delivering more than you’d expect from such an affordable portable generator. A spark arrestor and a CARB/EPA compliant safety rating top the bill, so this best-seller from PowerPro will satisfy the low-emissions mandates that protect California and other environmentally fragile areas.

What’s in The Box

Battery charging cables are included in the box. They’re packed away tidily with a spark plug wrench and a User Manual. Please note, oil isn’t included in the package, nor is there a low oil change alarm or cutout to worry about.

Remember, there’s no oil reservoir built into the PowerPro 56101 engine, so these features are not required. Instead, the oil and fuel are mixed, poured into the one-gallon tank, and drawn into the 2-stroke engine. Use a fuel stabilized lubricant, an oil that’s designed for this engine type. Then, if that oily component does run too rich, you can use the included wrench to replace the spark plug. A maintenance plan takes care of such matters. After all, your new PowerPro generator can only perform at its best when all of these mechanical parts are properly cared for by yourself or another responsible adult.


Protect that CARB and EPA compliance rating by establishing some kind of a maintenance strategy. Bolster that plan by taking advantage of the included 1-year limited warranty. Manufactured by WEN, an Elgin, Illinois-based product maker, this brand is plainly backed by a company who has established a well-recognized market position. Consider that warranty, that company reputation, and feel safeguarded by a manufacturer who puts excellent customer service above all else.

Pros and Cons


  • Incredibly compact and easy to carry
  • Quiet 60-dB operation
  • A CARB and EPA compliant design
  • Equipped with independent circuit resets
  • Fitted with a carrying handle and 4 rubber feet


  • Suited for low-power applications
  • A need to mix the oil and gasoline correctly
  • Comes with a flimsy pull-start rope

Customer Reviews

When the zombie outbreak comes creeping and moaning up to your property, it’s time to cut your ties to the power grid. All right, there’s no such thing as a fictional army of the undead, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need a backup generator like the PowerPro 56101. On the contrary, there are enough real-life disasters occurring in the news to give even the most easygoing family head pause. Stop here for a wander among some of the most telling user reviews. These folks own or have access to this diminutive portable generator, so they’ve encountered all possible issues, addressed them, and hopefully solved them.

First of all, this first problem has become something of a recognized system flaw. It’s the pull-start mechanism, the thin rope that starts the generator engine. Be aware that there have been reports of starter snapping. That rope breaks, there’s no way to start your newly acquired portable genny, and you’re left in the dark, literally in the dark, while the rest of the campground gets on with their fun evening. 

Other potential troublemakers include a higher than expected noise level, a rough idling effect, and an inability to power heavier appliances. Those first two operational hurdles were only observed on a few rare occasions. As for the power supply problem, that’s really an unavoidable effect. It’s really the only downside of the design. Remember the 900-Watt output rating, a power availability limitation that equates to a 120-Volt output at 7.5-Amps. Smaller refrigerators and air conditioners will whirr into action when this output level is accessed, but larger appliances simply require more output muscle.

By the way, the run times quoted here assume a fifty-percent load. If your load is heavier, expect reduced running hours and possible output dips, a phenomenon that electronic appliances won’t tolerate for long. Finally, mechanically speaking, that oil/fuel ratio isn’t etched in stone; the 50:1 ratio works for some users, but others have rejected that mix in favour of a 32:1 formula. The gasoline and 2-Stroke oil must be mixed correctly. According to more than a handful of users, a poor mix can result in anything from carburetter gunk to a fouled spark plug. 

Finally, if you flip the PowerPro 56101 until the engine cowling and starter rope are facing you, you’ll see a gas shutoff. Take care, leaks have been reported in this area of the equipment. But that mechanical snag, as well as any of the other problems listed here by concerned owners, can easily be fixed without ever having to call in a replacement part.


Take another look at the PowerPro 56101, a portable generator that really earns its place amongst some of the finest mobile power producers. It’s a 2-Stroke champ, a piece of equipment that can practically be swallowed up by your packed electrical tools and appliances. Pulled from amongst those inert items, though, it settles on 4 robust rubber pads. A read through the numbered instructions on the control panel directs your hands. You adjust the choke control, pull the recoil starter rope, and the engine springs to life. You’ve got power.

Sure, the 1000-Watt starting power drops to a governor-stabilized 900-Watts as the equipment settles, but your two outlets are now ready for some low-to-moderate output gadgets, perhaps even a power tool or two. You pull up at the park, start your tailgate party, and feed the event with power-mixed tequilas. Then, with the weekend over, you’re out on the job. A power tool and a small lighting fixture energize. Work is getting done, even in the dark, even in the middle of nowhere. Better yet, a spontaneous vacation is in the cards. You worked hard, so why not take a break? In California, a state that enforces stringent emissions restriction laws, your PowerPro 56101 still hits the mark because it’s CARB and EPA compliant. Head for a national park and take your portable generator along for the ride.

When all is said and done, this reasonably priced portable generator may not cost a lot of cash, but that doesn’t mean it’s a cheap product. No, it’s inexpensive, equipped to perform, and sized to go anywhere.

DuroMax XP2000iS Generator Review

Did you know that you’re living in a digital world? Smartphones occupy the attention of friends and family. On the bus to work, folk are texting or tweeting. It’s the same in the car, with passengers supplying GPS directions via a friendly virtual assistant. Even a weekend getaway, one that takes you off into a secluded canopy of trees, doesn’t guarantee an escape from mobile devices. Fortunately, the portable generator market is well aware of the need for a digitally precise electrical power supply.

Capable of safely powering all of your mobile gadgets and more, the DuroMax XP2000IS is the answer to your off-grid digital living needs, all thanks to a core feature the technical types refer to as inverter technology. Tasked with outputting a perfect voltage output, an alternating current sine wave that can happily charge the fussiest electronic devices, this attractively featured piece of equipment has earned its place on many power generating shortlists. Gas-fueled and blue in hue, the DuroMax XP2000IS is light, line-power proficient, and loaded with the kind of features that will delight today’s demanding electronic devices.


  • Dimensions: 19 x 10.5 x 17 inches
  • Weight: 47-lbs
  • Wattage: 2000-Watts starting and 1600- Watts running
  • Output: 120-Volts AC, 12- Vot DC, and 5-Volt DC
  • Engine Features: 3.0-HP. 4-Stroke single Cylinder
  • Engine Displacement: 80-cc
  • Fuel: Unleaded gasoline
  • Tank Run Time: 6.5-hours
  • Noise Level: 61-dB
  • Integrated Inverter: Yes
  • Starter Type: Manual recoil

Also known as the Side Kick, the DuroMax XP2000IS is designed to be your camping, work services, and emergency power event companion. The output electrical energy, as already discussed, is pure and stable, which is just as a modern electronic device likes its charging power.

Power Output

This portable generator has been repeatedly reviewed as an essential companion device, a sidekick power producer that delivers the goods on several fronts. There’s the battery charging connection, the 12-Volt, 8-Amp direct current connection. Charge a vehicle or boat battery with this outlet and never be stranded in the back of beyond. Furthermore, there’s a second DC outlet. This port is important. It’s a USB connector, a little squarish outlet that every smartphone owner knows well. Sure, your phone’s battery indicator may choose to hover dismally above the zero mark at the worst possible moment, but that’s no longer a problem, not when you have access to a dedicated portable USB power line.

As for the primary outlets, there are two 120-Volt, 13.4-Amp, 60-Hertz electrical sockets. They’re the standard three-pin variants that include an earthing line, so do hook up the generator to a nearby ground connection via the ground terminal. Look for it on the control panel. Can’t you see it? It’s there, way down on the bottom left edge of the panel.

Engine & Fuel

The power outlet section really received lots of attention, and that’s because this digitally-gifted portable generator is equipped with some interesting extras, including the USB outlet, a port that will quickly recharge your smartphone or MP3 player. But what about the mechanics, the engine and fuel section? Without engine reliability, none of those fancy ports and outlets will operate, so just what is happening at the business end of this compact genny?

A gas tank tops the blue brick of the all-metal housing. The 4.5-Litre/1.18-Gallon reservoir provides enough liquid sustenance to keep the 4-stroke engine purring along for 6.5-hours. Some owners say the engine will run for a little over 8-hours. Do remember that these figures have been recorded while the generator was running at half its rated load. As for the oil, none is provided when the engine is shipped. Fill the crankcase with SAE 30 or 10w-30 engine oil. You’re going to have to remove the outer casing cover to get into the engine, which isn’t ideal, but the sealed housing does keep the generator free of outside pollutants, plus it looks pretty cool when those covers are fastened.

Fuel filling is a little easier. It’s hard to miss that big fuel cap, for it’s located right at the top of the housing, just in front of the smoothly incorporated lift handle. Incidentally, a carburetter-regulating air vent is built into the fuel cap. Adjust it accordingly so that the engine receives the correct air/fuel mix. Finally, the DuroMax XP2000IS portable generator is equipped with multiple engine safeguards, including a low oil shutdown feature, a fuel-regulating smart throttle, and a spark arrester. To locate that latter safeguard, rotate the all-metal frame until you’re facing the muffler cover. There, outlined by a ringed flange clamp, the spark arrester assures CARB and EPA compliance.

Starting Mechanism

Let’s play a game, no, it’s a simulation of an emergency. The power has cut out abruptly. Your flashlight comes on, perhaps during the worst storm you’ve ever encountered. It’s alarming, this darkness and howling wind, but you make it to your garage. Your DuroMax XP2000IS is stationed in a dry corner. You lift it free by its integrated handle. It’s a little heavy, so send the man of the house to heave the 47-lb metal frame free. On the left side, there’s the manual action recoil start mechanism. It’s recessed into the side panel and framed in polished silver. Grip the chunky handle. Next, move your flashlight beam over the control panel. You’ll want to turn that 3-in-1 rotary switch to the choke position. Turn the air filter on the fuel cap to the ON mark, then give the starter cord a solid tug.

Repeat that last step until the engine is running. The redesigned recoil starter should kick the engine into action in no time at all. It’ll settle rapidly, which means the portable generator has dropped from its 2000-Watt starting output. It’s now throttling back into a steady 1600-Watt electrical sine wave. That digitally stabilized alternating current is ready to energize your sensitive electronic gadgets and act as an emergency backup power source, one that’ll get you through the stormy night. Switch the rotary control to ‘RUN’ and start plugging in your lights. By the way, that now warm engine is going to spin at 4100-RPM. If fuel economy is an issue, you’ll want to flip the Engine Economy Control button to ON. Once activated, the economy mode intelligently throttles the engine. The engine speed now varies in response to the applied load, so additional fuel savings are realized.

Plugs & Control Panel

A first mention is reserved for the USB outlet, a port that’s a standard part of the computer sector. The integrated 1.5-Amp, 5-Volt DC outlet proves the Side Kick XP2000IS is built specifically to power sensitive electronic devices, although it also has enough raw oomph to keep your light power applications switched on for over six hours. You’ll find that USB outlet in the lower left quadrant of the intuitively configured control panel. Slightly above this outlet, a 12-Volt, 8-Amp DC receptacle has pride of place. It’s a handy extra, one that many a boat or RV owner will instantly recognize as a key feature, for there are 12-Volt batteries to be charged on long trips.

Moving on, the lower right side of the panel features two 120-Volt, 13.3-Amp power outlets. As you’d expect, these are the primary outlets, the power points that will be providing energy to camping/emergency lights, appliances, stereo systems, and even a few low-duty power tools. Also, this is a special class of machinery, so you can daisy chain two DuroMax Side Kick XP2000IS generators and double the output power, but you’ll be hearing more about this particular feature later. Next, embedded at the lowest point on the control panel, two parallel ports facilitate this daisy-chaining function. Take note, you’ll require a separately sold parallel cable along with the second identical XP2000IS, for the cable is not included in the box.

The Side Kick XP2000IS emblem is etched into the top left corner of the control surface. Below, three horizontally arranged indicator lights provide essential feedback. There’s a low oil light, an overload indicator, and an AC Pilot light. Please keep an eye on these important little lights at all times. To the right of those, a 3-in-1 start control is located within easy reach of your hand. It contains the RUN, OFF, and CHOKE controls that determine the start sequence. Beyond these essential buttons and rotary controllers, there’s a circuit breaker, which is logically positioned close to the two main power outlets. That leaves the Economy Switch, that aforementioned smart throttling feature. Picture it as a fuel-sipping feature, a setting that conserves this precious liquid during some impossibly lengthy emergency situation.

Noise Level

A muted 61-dB noise envelope is produced by this compact blue package of power generating muscle. To give you some idea of an appliance that produces that amount of noise, listen to an air conditioner in a busy restaurant. Know that the Economy Mode further reduces the noise, then feel a sense of excitement at the thought of hooking up a TV or stereo system, for you’ll be able to hear these entertainment sources without too much interference from a disruptive engine. Indeed, the advanced engine architecture and oversized muffler combo really manage noise very well on this popular inverter generator.

Parallel Operation

Running a finger down the feature list, a big check mark is placed against this state-of-the-art function. Located at the bottom of the control panel, to the right of the ground terminal, two parallel outlets facilitate parallel operability. That means you can hook up a second XP2000IS to run simultaneously, thus doubling the output power. As you can guess, this isn’t a common characteristic you’ll find in standard generators, not when the AC waveforms require careful syncing. Being an advanced inverter model, though, this digitally controlled equipment manages that syncing operation with ease.

Unfortunately, those special parallel cables are not included in the box. Consult a DuroMax dealer if you own two of these portable generators. Now, when they’re daisy-chained in this manner, you have access to a full 3000-Watts of synchronized AC power. A 25-Amp thread of appliance and tool energizing current is now on hand to really get you through the worst possible emergency. Do note, these are two identical generators, so you’ll be experiencing more noise along with the output hike.


The clues are there for you to see. The parallel operations feature, the ability to daisy-chain two of these portable backup generators, pairs logically with a native digital power output function. In other words, the voltage sine wave is stable and perfectly capable of adjusting on the fly so that it harmonizes with a second output waveform. Let’s not dance around the issue any longer, this is an inverter generator, a superior package of power generating equipment that uses a specially embedded microprocessor to condition the engine-generated power.

Smaller than a regular genny, this technologically refined circuitry incorporates numerous benefits. However, there’s a cost attached to those benefits. Because of that superior design, expect the cost of the DuroMax XP2000IS to orbit the $500 mark.
Available for:
Amazon.com $496.40
Newegg.com $496.99
eBay.com $469.99

Put the above prices into perspective by viewing the original manufacturer’s price. Set originally at $899.99, these lower tags are very attractive, especially when you consider the advantages you’re receiving. The smaller size, the electronically stabilized output sine wave, the USB outlet, all of these features are highly desirable in a contemporary portable inverter generator. Sure, a regular model might produce the raw output you’re after, but it’ll likely be bulky and quite incapable of generating the conditioned AC you need to charge your sophisticated electronic gadgets, prime amongst which would be your smartphone, a device you’ll use as a lifeline during a power outage.

What’s in The Box

You’ll find an instruction manual in the box. Don’t lose it, not if you want to page through all of the starting guidelines and maintenance procedures. The DuroMax XP2000IS may be a superior product, but it’ll still require some good old-fashioned care. Cradled alongside the manual, there’s also a spark plug wrench. The T-shaped tool needs to be kept near the generator for those times the air/fuel mix is set too rich. An unpleasant gunk builds up on the plug ignition points when the unleaded gasoline runs rich.

Finally, your package includes a handly filling funnel. Use it wisely, and don’t just wedge a hose into the fuel tank. After all, this is a fully enclosed unit, a blue-hued, streamlined piece of equipment that keeps moving parts away from probing fingers, so it deserves to be treated with some respect. By the way, the absolute last item in the box is the portable generator, a 2-kW digital inverter device that’s EPA and CARB compliant. Those last features may not occupy any space in the box, but they’re there just the same, built into the environmentally safe engine architecture.


While a properly conducted maintenance strategy will extend the life of your XP2000IS, this DuroMax product doesn’t rely on half-measures. There’s a warranty in place to reinforce your maintenance work. You’ll receive a 1-year limited parts protection guarantee. This means that replacement parts are installed for free if the portable generator fails due to a manufacturer flaw, workmanship defect, or material fault. Additionally, the policy may include a thirty-day satisfaction guaranteed proviso, which really strengthens this manufacturer-assured safety net. Somehow, however, you’re going to fall for the Side Kick so hard that you’ll never want to return this digitally capable mobile genny.

Pros and Cons


  • This is an inverter generator
  • It runs at 1.6-kW (Parallel cables and a second identical generator will double that output rating)
  • Carb and EPA compliant
  • Includes an embedded USB outlet
  • Fitted with a muffler and a spark arrester
  • Quiet 61-dB operation
  • Low oil shutdown control
  • The device frame is all-metal


  • Uses a manual start mechanism
  • Parallel cable are not included
  • Designed for light power applications
  • Requires a break-in period

Customer Reviews

Even though a push-button start is conspicuously absent from the Side Kick XP2000IS, reviewers aren’t offended by that omission. Just the opposite, in fact, the starter cord tends to work the first time it’s tugged from its housing. That’s quite a convenience, especially since no one enjoys tiring themselves out before the camping or working event has even properly started. As for an emergency scenario, you really want a portable generator that’s going to roar to life on the first tug, right?

Some of the more experienced owners out there did have a few caveats of wisdom to add, though, including a few tips that focus on engine break-in. Bite the bullet and give in to the advised pre-operation run check. Something like a 3-hour break-in period seems to be standard. Set your Side Kick on a level surface, run it in normal mode (Without any connected loads), and finish the test. Next, drain the oil/fuel tanks, let the generator cool, and then refill the product with its two essential fluids again, as directed by the owner’s manual. When you’ve completed this burn-in period, you can start hooking up your electrical loads.

It’s hard to find any actual flaws in the design, which is why this product is universally respected and wrapped in five-star reviews. A couple of owners did complain about the pull-start feature. They said the start cord required many tugs before the engine chugged up to full speed, but those complaints were definitely in the minority. There’s a chance, however remote, that the vented fuel cap could confuse some operators. Otherwise, this is a stellar option, one that’s practically designed to provide a lifeline to all of your fussy electronic devices.


There’s a real appeal to the sealed housing that surrounds the Side Kick XP2000IS. For those who wish to use the portable generator at a tailgate party, little children won’t be able to stick their enquiring fingers into an exposed opening, into a place where moving part are busily at work. Then there’s the daisy-chaining feature. For a 47-lb lightweight, you’re receiving 1600-Watts of running power, which is enough for most of us, but this generator goes the extra mile by incorporating this parallel output function. If your electrical needs aren’t met, bring in a second XP2000IS. Buy the parallel cable. You’ve now got access to 3.0-kW of output power, all thanks to the inverter-facilitated innards of this digitally proficient blue box.

A 12-Volt battery charging receptacle, two 120-Volt AC outlets, and even a USB port, the DuroMax XP2000IS has proven itself to be an all-rounder. A core 3.0-horsepower, single cylinder engine provides the kinetic energy, that raw oomph of spinning movement. Running for up to 8-hours on a single 1.18-gallon fill, the prime mover rotates at 4100 revolutions per minute, but that velocity is adjustable, thanks to the economy control mode. Sure, despite this feature-rich build, extra expenditure is required to get the best out of this set-up. There’s a run-in period to consider, and inverter generators do cost more than their standard alternator-output cousins. But think about the gains you’re getting when you purchase this model. A spark arrester, the confidence to use the equipment in a heavily forested environment, surge protection, and more, this compact package most definitely delivers the goods.

Buy one, a single XP2000IS, and power many sensitive electronic devices, plus a host of equipment during a power outage. It’ll drive some lighter power tools, worksite equipment, and camping gear. Then, when you’ve seen just how well this acclaimed generator performs, buy a second model, plus the required parallel output cables. Daisy-chained as a pair, the dual Side Kicks will now satisfy your most demanding power backup requirements.

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