Best Welder Generator For The Money in 2019

Finding a good generator was already a bear of a task; now, readers are demanding to find them the best welder generator available in the market.

Surprisingly, we found out that not a lot of companies have cracked the code of welder generators. We pooled 20 or so generators in the first screening and then picked the top 6 welder generators from there.

Here, you will have the research phase of those 6 welder generators with some other useful information that will help you find your best match.

In a Hurry? Check Our Top Picks of Welder Generators List

6 Best Welder Generator Reviews

There are a lot of generators in the market. But not all are best for welding. Here are six products that give the best value.

  1. Hobart welder generator Champion 145 Model# 500563

Hobart is a well-known name in the welding industry. And, the champion 145 is an example of how they made that name.

  • Engines

This is where you cook the juice to bring out the power. Here, you will have a Briggs & Stratton Intek 4-cycle OHV engine. This monster can run at 10 HP.

It is a gas-powered engine that has a 30% duty cycle. So, rest your welder 7 minutes after every 3 minutes of welding. You will have a pan-cake style muffler for sound reduction. The muffler is quite large.

Also, the generator features a 4500 surge (peak) watts. That is 4000 continuous watts of AC power. You will have this power converted to DC power to have a powerful welder.

  • Receptacles

Following the power capacity, comes the mechanics that keep it running smoothly. You will have four 120V 20 amp receptacles and one 240V 50 amp receptacle for a higher power. These are GFCI receptacles. All the outlets are coated with a protective cover that keeps dust and moisture out.

The plugs will also be GFCI 115V, 20 amp plugs. Fine-tuning amps is made more accessible than ever before with the amperage regulator.

  • Portability

Mount the machine on the running gear that comes with it. The frame of the gear gives extra protection to the generator.

  • Fuel Capacity

Around 6.25 gallons of fuel is powering the machine. With a full tank of juice, you will be able to run the engine for 12.5 hours. There is also a site gauge on the side of the generator.

  • Welding Unit

The 145 number in the name signifies the amp measurement on the welder end. Therefore, you will have a range of 40-145 amps at the welder end, which you can control with your regulator.

This generator can handle stick and MIG welding finely. Although you will be able to do TIG welding with it, you might find the amperage to be inadequate.

In a single pass, you will be able to weld 1/8 inches-1/4” inches.

Pros
  • Includes running gear
  • Quiet operation
  • Sight fuel gauge
  • High-quality circuit breakers
  • Good warranty
Cons
  • Amperage is not enough for TIG welding
  • No auto-idle function

FAQs

Q: What is GFCI?

A: It is a receptacle that is equipped with a circuit breaker which is able to cut off power in 1/40 of a second in case of an emergency.

Q: Can I do fluxcore welding with it?

A: Yes, but you will need a spool gun.


  1. Tomahawk 15 HP Engine Driven Welder with Kit

Consumers love it. Because of its welder kit and versatility, DIY warriors love this generator. Here is more about this machine.

  • Engine & Power

The electric starting mechanism jump-starts the 15 HP 420cc engine. It creates 120V of pressure with 210 amps. The single outlet of the generator is 120V as well. The surge wattage is 2000 while the surge amp is 50.

  • Fuel

This generator uses gasoline for fuel. The capacity of the fuel tank is about 7 gallons. There is an easy gauge for tracking the fuel.

  • Welder Kit

A full-fledged welding kit is delivered with the generator/welder. The tools you will have with this welder are-

  • Copper connection pieces (x2)
  • Quick connector
  • Small hex wrench
  • Ground clamp 500A
  • Gloves
  • Tungsten needle
  • Oil funnel
  • TIG 26 series torch with 2 copper cables
  • MMA 500A Holder with 2 copper cables

The copper cables will be 10 feet long.

  • Portability

Along with the welder kit, you will also have a cart for easy portability. The package will contain 2 wheels, a wheel shaft, and 2 handles. These make an excellent portable running gear for the welder generator.

  • Welding and Other Usages

Both TIG and MMA welding is possible with this machine. You can also do other types of welding with it. Weld 1/3, 1/4, 3/8 inch metal with ease. In terms of rods, you can weld from 6010 rods to 7024 rods. Although you can get far more than that, the company says it’s a suitable range. The power can be as high as 50 amps.

Along with welding, you will also be able to run other electrical equipment.

  • Convenience

It is a PMG generator, which means it has no coils. The excitation field is created by a permanent magnet. You will also have a large muffler that reduces the noise. The cart and big wheels make it easy to move it.

Welder kit tools and other parts of the machine can always be replaced and easily bought from online or physical stores. It is durable and needs less maintenance. The inverter technology makes it clean and stable.

Pros
  • 60% duty cycle
  • Muffler
  • Batteries
  • Electric start
  • Welder kit
  • Versatile
Cons
  • No AC outlets
  • Goes hot very quickly

FAQs

Q: Is there a pull start system here?

A: Yes, there is.

Q: Can I get extra leads?

A: Yes, you can get them online.


  1. AMP TRIPLEX 9200RS 3-in-1 Generator Welder & Air Compressor Powered by Kohler

Three times the value of your money is secured with this welder/generator/compressor. This product is quite new in the market, but it is already trending. And, it is an expensive piece of ingenuity too. So, you better research thoroughly before buying the unit.

  • Engine

Kohler used its own patented technology to build this engine. They call it the Command pro. It will give you a 14 HP. Primarily, this is designed for heavy-duty jobs.

If you are getting one for your construction site, professional garage, or farm, then this is a pretty good choice. The 6500 watts of energy created from the engine gives you a pretty good welder. You can start the engine electrically or by the recoil system. It can even be started with a remote.

  • Compressor

The 110 PSI compressor was a lovely touch of brilliance. Since a lot of energy goes to waste when you are burning your fuel, the 9200RS uses some of that energy to create 8 CFM of air pressure. However, the CFM will be 5.2 at 90 PSI. The alternator output is measured at 35kw.

  • Welding

The massive wattage output gives you a good punch to start the welding. You will have a continuous 6000 wattage of output for smooth welding experience. It may also be used as a plasma cutter as you will have 50-200 amps and 200V of smooth DC power.

Adjust your power output with the amperage dial. It can weld up to 3/8 inch while it can handle electrodes up to 5/32 inch.

  • Fuel Efficiency

Tank size is 8 gallons here, but you will be able to run it for 16 hours. The efficiency is greater than almost all other generators in the market.

  • Receptacles

There are two 115V and 20 amp receptacles in the control panel. Along with that, you will have one 240V 30 amp receptacle which has a twist-lock system. And, there is another receptacle of 240V that has an amperage of 50amps.

  • Versatility

When it comes to the price, I would not say this is the best welder for the money. Rather, it made to our list because of its amazing versatility and heavy-duty application capability.

Apart from being used as a welder and emergency power supply, you can also use this as a lighting fixture, nail gun, and grinder. You may also use this as a plasma cutter. However, it will need a separate air supply for plasma operations.

  • Tools & Accessories

Below are the tools that you will have with your generator-

  • 10 ft. ground cable/clamp
  • 10 ft. electrode cable/holder
  • 10 ft. welding cable (x2)
  • Electrode holder
  • Waterproof protective unit cover
  • Axles
  • Mud wheels

Construction & Portability

Top-quality rugged steel is the main building material of this welder generator. It is built to last. You can’t say that for many welder generators. On top of that, you have a powder coat on the body to fight against harmful chemical reactions.

It has a semi-enclosed frame with a removable maintenance panel which gives you access to tune-up application. The running gear is a wheelbarrow-style mechanism which allows easy maneuverability.

Pros
  • Best fuel efficacy
  • Great versatility
  • Durable
  • Wide range of tools
  • Excellent welding
  • High wattage
  • Good engine displacement
  • Low maintenance required
Cons
  • High price
  • Fake products in the market

FAQs

Q: How to get the original product?

A: Purchase from verified sellers.

Q: Can it weld cast iron?

A: Yes, it can.


  1. Miller Bobcat 250 Diesel Engine-Driven Welder / Generator 907565

Miller bobcat welder generator has a compact design that packs a heavy punch inside. This is one of the most well-known brands in America, and here are the reasons why:

  • Engine

This engine-driven welder carries a Kubota-made engine that runs at 1800 RPM. With a 19HP engine, you will have a wapping 11000 watts. This peak wattage can be maintained for at least 30 seconds. In a single-phase, this generator will give you 8500 watts.

Both AC and DC current output is available with 250A and 28V. The rotors here are slightly skewed. Finally, this generator is compliant with EPA tier 4.

  • Versatility

With this power, you can have the following processes done with ease-

  • CAC-A (Air Carbon Arc Cutting and Gouging)
  • FCAW (Flux Cored)
  • GMAW (MIG)
  • SMAW (Stick)
  • GTAW (TIG)
  • Plasma (PAC)

You can easily weld aluminum, steel, and stainless steel with this welder.

  • Fuel

The primary fuel of this generator is diesel, which is far cheaper than gasoline. You will have 12 gallons of fuel space, which is one of the best for welder generators. This fuel will be enough to create 4000 watts of energy for 14 hours.

Moreover, there will be no backsplash while refueling. These features make it the best diesel welder generator.

  • Portability and Convenience

To aid the maneuverability of the machine, Miller added a standard lift eye. Alongside that, you will also have your running gear and trailer. However, these are optional and may raise the price a little.

On the front panel, you will have a maintenance display that informs you when your machine needs servicing. There is also a front panel sight gauge for fuel indication. You will have a 100% duty cycle on 250 amps and 60% on 275 amps.

  • Cold Weather Kit

For those who live under harsh winters, Miller welder manufacturers designed a block heater. This allows smooth starting of the machine and optimal filtration.

  • Sound

Unlike many other brands, this engine is designed to be quieter. You will have just 80dB of noise when welding.

  • Construction

The generator features two GFCI 120V receptacles. These are duplex receptacles. Miller will also give you adaptor cords with the generator. The configuration of the cords is NEMA 14-50P to NEMA 6-50R.  Lastly, the casing is fully enclosed and comes with a protective cover.

Pros
  • Tri-color technology
  • Good duty cycle
  • Accu-Rated
  • Light and compact design
  • No backsplash
  • Low sound
  • Cold weather kit
  • Fuel efficient
Cons
  • Turns off before fuel is finished
  • No running gear

FAQs

Q: Can this be used for industrial jobs?

A: Yes, you can.

Q: What is the net weight?

A: It is about 289 KG.


  1. Lincoln Electric Ranger 225 Multi-Process/Welder Generator Model Number K2857-1

If you are looking for the best small engine-driven welder to mount on the back of your truck, then this is your choice. Although it is a small one, the engine packs enough power to be able to do almost all kinds of welding.

  • Engine

Lincoln uses Kohler gasoline engines, and they put a lot of work on this particular engine. It has two cylinders and 4 overhead cycle valves. The valves are designed for cooling.

Some other exciting features about this 23 HP engine is that it has an oil change extension. This allows for easy refueling. The displacement rate is an amazing 674cc.

  • Fuel

Gasoline is the main juice required for this engine. You will have a 12-gallon tank. Fuel efficiency is excellent here. Every hour the engine consumes 1.5 gallons to produce 210 amps of DC power. This makes the runtime 16 hours in one fill. Both sides of the fuel tank have visual gauges.

  • Construction

This generator has a pretty sturdy construction. The enclosed casing prevents moisture and dust from getting in. Thus, your generator will be on duty for a long time. However, there are three access doors for maintenance.

  • Generator

Ranger 225 will hit 10500 watts in a single phase, and you will have a 9000 watts coming out continuously. You will also have an auto-idle feature with this generator.

  • Welder

You will have a smooth DC output for welding. The amperage range of this welder is 50-225 amps. Here is a chart of the duty cycle to make it easy for you to understand.

Amperage Duty cycle
225A 40%
200A 100%
210A 100%
  • Sound

Now, the sound measurements are in a grey area. Manufacturers said there sound measurements are 76.4 dB, but that is the case when you measure it from 23 feet.

Pros
  • Compact design
  • Oil change extension
  • Auto idle feature
  • Low sound
  • Powerful engine
  • Fuel efficient engine
  • Strong construction
  • Easy maintenance
Cons
  • No running gear
  • No tool kit
 

FAQs

Q: Will I have welding leads with it?

A: No, you won’t.

Q: Can it be used as a stand by?

A: Yes, you can.


  1. Hobart Champion Elite Welder/Generator – 23 HP, 11,000 Watts, Model# 500562

This is the second Hobart welder generator on our list. While the first one (Hobart champion 145) made its mark on the versatility end, this one is all about power. Here is what you will have with this welder generator.

  • Engine

You don’t get engines as powerful as this so cheap. This motor features amazing electric starting characteristics and gives you a fine continuous supply of electricity measuring up to 9500 watts and 225 amps where surge wattage is 11000 watts.

Furthermore, this generator gives you an amperage range of 40-225A at a 100% duty cycle. Tune the amps at will with the amperage dial.

Some other interesting numbers are that this generator/welder gives you a 2400 RPM engine idle speed and 3600 RPM of engine weld speed. All of these in a 23 HP engine makes it better than most other products out there in the market.

  • Welding

The 8000 watts supplied to the welder makes it very versatile. This wattage comes with 150 amps. All of this comes without compromising the power supply to the receptacles. With a single pass, you will be able to weld half inches of steel and cast iron.

  • Construction

Although a lightweight model, the body of the generator is quite strong. In that small space, the casing packs a large battery, with rugged electrical wirings. This is a fully enclosed design. And this design reduces noise.

There are site gauges and digital hour meter to help you keep your generator in top condition. A hook on the top lets you use cranes or other kinds of mechanisms so that you can mount it on your truck or anywhere you want. Sadly, you have to buy cables and running gear separately.

  • Fuel

There is a 12-gallon compartment for fuel. With all other standard features, you will have an auto-shutdown system when the fuel has reached a minimum level. You will also have a maintenance routine that will require you to service the engine after every 100 hours of operation.

One refill of the tank will enable the machine to run for 14 hours continuously at 4000 watts. There is also an auto-idle feature saving you more fuel.

  • Receptacles

Here is a table to make it easy for you to understand the receptacle configurations-

Number of outlets voltage amperage Configuration
4 120v 20amp
1 240 50amp NEMA 6-50R
1 120/240 50amp NEMA 14-50R

All of these receptacles have circuit breakers. These circuit breakers have a pushbutton system that allows you to run multiple tools at once.

  • Accessories

With the machine, you will have an elegant water-resistant cover that will protect your welder generator from systematic problems. There is also a secondary electrode cable and work cable. Both of these will measure around 50 feet. They have a 200 amp measurement and a 100% duty cycle.

Pros
  • Heavy duty
  • Great power
  • Fuel efficient
  • Great welding
  • Good in simultaneous operation
  • Useful small features
Cons
  • Running gear needs to be bought separately
  • Welding cables need to be bought separately

FAQs

Q: What is the dimension of this welder generator?

A: It is 41in.L x 20in.W x 28in.H.

Q: What is the noise level?

A: Our research shows it is about 75.5dB.


How to Pick the Best Welder Generator (Buying Guide)

Welder generators have a lot of electrical and mechanical properties. To have a full understanding of your purchase, you need to grasp them all.

But you don’t need to scour the internet as you have all the information written below.

  • Engine

This is where you cook up the juice to bring out the power. The reliability of an engine is quite tricky to measure. And the best possible way to get high-quality engines is to go for reputed brands. Engines made by Kohler, Hobart and other brands in our engine-driven welder reviews are the best ones out there.

Another thing to consider is that good engines will cost higher. There is no apparent optimum point to exploit.

You need at least a 10Hp engine for basic welding jobs. For more value look for engines with 15HP-20HP power. With this power, the engine should be creating around 5000 watts or more continuously, whereas the surge wattage should be more than 8000 watts.

Engine displacement rate should be around the 400cc mark. The more, the merrier. Electric or remote starting mechanisms are becoming more and more popular these days. However, if you have a recoil system, it should be smooth and able to start in one pull. Both AC and DC current should be available.

  • Fuel

Firstly, find out what fuel does the engine require. Gasoline and diesel are the most popular fuel source for generators. Also, ensure that generators are permitted in your region.

We all know that more fuel capacity is better. The minimum standard is 7 gallons. And each gallon should be able to support the welder for 1.5 hours for continuously creating 4000 watts.

The design of the generator should allow a precise fuel sight gauge or some other kind of measuring system. Auto shut-off feature should also be there in case you forget to refill your generator in time.

  • Duty Cycle

It is the measurement of break time a welder needs after a continuous phase of welding. If the duty cycle is 40%, the welder needs to rest 6 minutes after 4 minutes of continuous welding. We expect a minimum of 30% cycle. But the measurement can go up to 100%.

  • Accessories

Generally, you can expect a welding kit with the welder generator. But the machine might not always have a full tool-set. Instead, you may get a few tools with the generator and buy others separately.

These are the tools that a complete welder kit should have;

  • Connection pieces
  • Quick connector
  • Small hex wrench
  • Ground clamp
  • Gloves
  • Tungsten needle
  • Oil funnel
  • TIG torch with copper cables
  • Electrode cable
  • Axles
  • MMA Holder with copper cables
  • Running gear
  • Cold weather tools
  • Water-resistant cover

Among these accessories, you can count the cover and the running gear a must-have. If you live in a cold-weather area, then you must have the cold weather kit for welding as regular instruments will falter during the winter.

  • Outlets

There is no need to say that your generator should be able to power other devices other than the welder. For the smooth transition of electricity, you need a versatile range of outlets. The more the outlets, the better it is.

In America, 120V and 240V are most common. So, make sure that you have those in the generator. Alongside that, the outlets should be of 20, 30 or 50 amps. GFCI receptacles are the best. Circuit breakers in the plugs and outlets help to avoid accidents.

  • Welding

Some welding applications can require a lot of power. So it depends on your usage of how much wattage you want for welding. If you are looking for a heavy-duty welder generator than go for one that can supply you continuous 8000-11000 watts. There will also be 2000-4000 watt generator welder for lighter use.

With this power, you should be able to weld metals like steel, cast iron. Metals like aluminum require low power. For having that versatility look for a welder where you can fine-tune the power to your need. You should be able to weld 1/2-1/8 inches in a single pass.

  • Construction & Maintenance

When you are buying a product this expensive, durability is a big question. So your machine should have a strong metal casing. A fully enclosed casing is preferable. Though a few openings are required for maintenance purposes.

At the same time, the product has to be comparatively lightweight. The battery area should be water-resistant.

  • Sound

Generators can bring a lot of complaints from your neighbor. You don’t want that in your workshop. Especially when you have new clients in the room. So, pick a machine that makes sounds less than 80dB.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the most common questions we get from our readers.

Q: What are the different types of welding I can do with a welder generator?

A: Well, you can do all types of work with it. These are some standard welding functions you should be able to do with a powerful welder generator-

  • CAC-A (Air Carbon Arc Cutting and Gouging)
  • FCAW (Flux Cored)
  • GMAW (MIG)
  • SMAW (Stick)
  • GTAW (TIG)
  • Plasma (PAC)

Q: What is a muffler?

A: This is an acoustic instrument placed on the exhaust of the engine that reduces the sound pressure resulting in less noise pollution.

Q: How long a generator should maintain the surge wattage?

A: According to our experience, an ideal surge wattage or peak wattage time should be around 30 seconds.

Q: What is a non-fuse breaker?

A: It is another name for circuit breakers.

Q: Can you explain what an automatic idle control is?

A: This is a very useful device for high power generators. Let’s say that you are welding with 2000 watts. But your 9000-watt generator is powering some other device too. If suddenly all other devices shut down but your welder, you can get an electric shock.

In these situations, an idle controller helps you to reset the wattage output to avoid accidents automatically.

Q: Which type of starting mechanisms are the best?

A: Well, electric and remote starting is always preferable. But recoil should also be there as a backup. Each of them can be useful in different situations.

Q: What is California’s Proposition 65?

A: It is a set of laws passed in 1986 exclusive to California. Some welder generators don’t comply with it; thus, it would be quite risky to own a generator like that. So, please check if there is any warning about this.

Q: Which is a better brand, Miller or Hobart?

A: Both are great names in the welding industry. Although Miller has greater popularity, according to our research, Hobart has an edge on welder generators.

Conclusion

People spend hours researching phones, laptops, and whatnot. But a welder can be way more costly than that. Thus we give you the most intense research on the best welder generators you will find on the web.

Don’t be lazy, read the whole thing, and make your money count!

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