Best food trucks-trailers generators are pieces of equipment that makes electricity off the grid. It is perfect for mobile businesses like the Food Trucks. The engine should be powerful enough to produce power for all the appliances. It should meet EPA and CARB standards to keep the environment clean and noise level down. As these generators run on fuels like propane, gasoline and diesel it should have a large enough fuel tank to get the truck from point A to B.
Food trucks are a lucrative business and the industry is booming. This is mainly because of the fittings that make up the food truck. A food truck requires internal and external fittings. The external fittings may be the signboards, the lights to illuminate the area around the serving windows and doors. Besides the other lights and fixtures that are usually there on a trucklike indicator lights, windshield wipers, etc.
The internal fittings maybe the refrigerator to store the ingredients to make the food. The refrigerator may function 24 x 7 to maintain the freshness of the food. There may be a freezer to deep freeze the meats and other condiments. There may be a fryer for French fries, tempura, etc. You may need to power an oven to bake the bread and keep them warm. The drink fountains require power to cool and dispense the beverages. And the dishwasher too; to clean the utensils.
Picking a Reliable Generator
Considering all these appliances on the food truck and the fact that they will be running simultaneously. And some of them like the freezer and refrigerator will be running 24 x 7 you need to work out the wattage of power you will need to run your truck and then select the generator.
Besides these factors, the truck owners should consider certain facts about their appliances and the generator before picking one. There are two kinds of loads – resistive load and reactive load. The resistive load requires a small amount of power to start the appliance and then run it. These are usually the appliances that heat up while in use or are used to heat and cook. For example – microwaves, ovens, coffee makers, light bulbs, toasters, etc.
While the reactive load is the additional power required to start the appliance but consumes lesser power once it is up and running. These are usually the appliances with motors like the grinders, refrigerators, air conditioners, blenders, etc. Consider both these values – the starting and running watts – of your appliances when you choose your generator.
This wattage or power is mentioned at the side or bottom of the appliance – on a data tag, stamp, nameplate on its electric motor. The manuals of these appliances also carry this information. The power requirement is usually listed in amperes while the generator output is in watts. Thus, it requires conversion of units.
1 Watt = 1 Volt x 1 ampere — This means 1 ampere = 1 watt / 1 volt.
To calculate the total wattage or power required add the power requirements of the appliances you are going to use at any given time. If your load is reactive, then use the starting wattage. This is frequently three times the running wattage.
Here is an example using estimates of the power requirements. Suppose a coffee maker’s surge power is 600 watts and running power is 600 watts. An Energy Starfridges surge power is 1200 watts and running power is 192 watts. Five light bulbs have a surge and running power of 300 watts. While a blender surges at 850 watts and runs at 400 watts. The total wattage will be the total of all the surge watts = 600 + 1200 + 300 + 850 = 2950 watts.
Thus, you will require a generator with a minimum power output of 2950 watt. However, it is recommended that you get a generator with a higher power output. This is because some appliances require higher amounts of power as they age. Besides the above also consider the ‘maximum’ and ‘rated’ power of the generator. Maximum power is the highest wattage produced by the generator for the first 30 minutes. Rated power is the consistent wattage produced over extended periods of time. It is usually 90 percent of the maximum power. Use the rated power to pick the generator for your truck.
Guidelines for Best Food Trucks-Trailers Generators
You can use a standard gas fuel generator with an onboard tankfor your food truck. Or you could use a trailer with its dedicated fuel tank and an EVAP generator to meet the set standards.
Mind the Fines
If the emission standards in your area require an EVAP generator and the audit finds a standard generator you may be fined as much as $39000. The new EVAP standards not only apply to the generator but also the fuel system components such as the clamps, fuel tanks, vapour canister, fuel lines, etc.(we have written extensively for the best generators brands)
Make sure that your generator is installed properly.You can install a larger generator and accommodate it in a larger space onboard. Or it can be fitted into an external storage space like a trailer or a trunk at the rear-end. Also, check the voltage while installing, mostly it is 120 or 240 volts.
Exhaust and Ventilation
Make sure that your generator receives enough air flow through vents. This keeps it cool and prevents carbon monoxide poisoning to the occupants. Besides the gasoline or diesel fumes and exhaust do not get into the food.
It is recommended that you have your generator installed by a professional. This is because the installation requires electrical and mechanical work. They also ensure that the genset is installed in a ventilated space that is non-flammable, heat resistant and there is no chance of CO-poisoning. (we have also written a comprehesive guide about the finish and brad nailers ).
Top 10 Best Food Trucks-Trailers Generators in 2020
|Best Food Trucks and Trailers Generators in 2019|
|Honda Power Equipment EU7000|
|Briggs & Stratton 30663|
|Briggs & Stratton Q6500|
|Generac 5940 GP6500|
|Powerhorse Generator 9000ES|
Honda is a well-known company that makes motorcycles and automobiles. Since 1953, they apply their 4-stroke engines in pumps, generators, mowers and outboard motors.
Design and Build
The reliable GX390 engine with an electronic fuel injection technology increases fuel efficiency. The design eliminates the need for a choke and associated problems, improving performance and longevity of the generator. The generator has an electric start, with a backup of a recoil start.
This genset is quiet at 52-60 dBA which is softer than normal conversation. As it is EPA, CARB and National Park Services compliant it makes an ideal supplemental for your food truck. The Eco-Throttle system makes this model fuel efficient. It runs for 6 – 18 hours on a single fuel tank depending on the load. Perfect for overnight powering of refrigerators and freezers on your truck.
The inverter technology offers clean power for your appliances and tools with microchips. The pure sine power with total harmonic distortion less than 3% is suitable for your electronics. This genset has a monitor that tracks engine speed in RPM, hours of operation, wattage and volts. The panel has three outlets – two GFCI-20 ampere outlets and one duplex 120V outlet.
There is a 120/240V selector switch that allows you to choose using 120V of power or both. This allows you to access the complete output of your genset. And power devices with large wattage requirements via the 120 volts outlets. The power available is only limited by the outlet you use. Foldable handles can be lowered for storing the unit or raised to move it. The genset is set on a tubular steel frame with never flat tires.
The Honda Power Equipment EU7000IAT1 can operate a wide variety of tools and appliances. The portability kit makes it perfect foryour mobile business, RVing, home and other outdoor activities.
This Honda has offers a surge power of 7000 watts and running power of 5500 watts.
There is an oil alert that shuts off the engine at low oil levels. The electronic circuit breakers protect the genset from an overload. There are a fuel gauge and a spark arrestor. The onboard monitoring system serves as a diagnostic tool for dealer servicing. There is a 3-year residential and commercial warranty that covers all issues of your genset.
- 120/240V Selector switch for more usable power & flexibility
- a monitoring system to protect against surges
- hour meter to schedule maintenance
- should be dual fuel
- should be parallel ready
This DuroMax has been manufactured by DuroPower. A well-known brand, it is known for long lasting service and reliability. All their generators have cast iron sleeves to protect the engine and mute noise. All of them match the government standards.
Design and Build
This DuroMax is a dual fuel generator that runs on gasoline and propane. This workhorse has 450cc air-cooled OHV engine. The engine has an electric start and recoil start for an ensured rev up. The panel has 5 outlets – with the two 120V-20-amp outlets, one 120V-30-amp twist lock, one 120/240V-30A twist and lock and one 120/240V-50A outlet. The unit is mounted on a tubular steel frame with 4-point isolated motor mounts that ground vibrations making it a quiet operation. There is a front handle to the mobility kit, that has solid rubber tires that grant mobility on all terrains.
This DuroMax is a true beast with its surge power of 12000 watts and 9500 running watts. The runtime is 10 hours on gasoline at 50% maximum output. While on propane it is 20 hours at 50% maximum output.
All the DuroMax gensets have a flexible warranty that can be extended beyond 1 – 2 years. Their parts and components can be shipped directly worldwide. They are EPA and CARB compliant. The other safety features are an AC/DC regulator, a spark arrestor and a low oil sensor. There is a voltmeter to monitor current and a circuit breaker in the event of a power surge.
- auto throttle for fuel efficiency
- automatic circuit breakers
- 120V or 120/240V selector
- not parallel ready
This Yamaha brings you more wattage for a great price. The EF7200DE brings home the legendary quality and performance in this gas-powered genset.
Design and Build
This Yamaha comes with a 358cc OHV MZ360 engine with a hemispherical head that improves fuel efficiency. The engine has cast iron cylinders for maximum heat dissipation. It starts with a 12V button start with a recoil start. The transistor-controlled ignition provides a clean spark that ensures a fast and easy start. It is minimal maintenance and reliable.
The battery is standard and a great convenience to start up the engine. The automatic oil indicator shuts down when the oil is below level. It also prevents engine damage, avoids repair and downtime thus enhances the longevity and durability of the genset.
The auto-decompression feature automatically opens the exhaust valve to reduce the initial backpressure to make manual startup effortless. There are four plugs – two NEMA 5-20R – GFCI, one NEMA L5-30R and one NEMA L14-30R. The wheel kit is perfect for use in rugged conditions they have never-flat tires and fold-down locking handles.
The Yamaha EF7200DE is perfect for play and work at home and outdoors. If you are thinking of installing one of these on your food truck the unit has a small footprint of 29.1 Inches by 38.4 Inches by 31.5 Inches of length, width and height respectively. Besides, it produces only 74.5 dBA of noise at 7 meters, making it a quiet model.
This EF7200DE offers a surge power of 7200 watts and running power of 6000 watts. It runs for 8 hours on a full load.
These are the accessories available with the Yamaha – one wired remote kit. The remote kit has a 33-foot-long cord and a remote switch. You can opt for the additional one, two or three years of Y.E. S. All the Yamahas are EPA and CARB compliant. There is a toolkit to make service easy.
- lifting eye for hoisting and security
- a full-time 120/240 dual voltage
- fuel gauge and low oil shut down
- cast iron sleeve
- hour meter, voltmeter, lifting eye
- no idle control
4. CAT RP6500E
CAT is a renowned brand for making some of the most dependable power equipment. They make power generators and industrial engine that are designed to work for thousands of hours without maintenance.
Design and Build
The CAT RP6500 is a perfect solution for portable power. It has a 420cc OHV engine with a tank capacity of 7.9 gallons. It surges to power with 8125 watts through an electric start. The model includes a lithium-ion battery. It runs at 6500 watts with the engine operating at 3600 RPM. There is a recoil start for the times when the battery is flat. A fuel gauge is attached to the tank to monitor the fuel level. The low-oil shutdown stops the engine when the oil heats up or the level is low. To prolong the engine life and function it is lubricated by the splash method using the 10W-30 engine oil.
All the CAT models are user-friendly with intuitive controls. There is automatic voltage regulation with 120/240 volts of AC produced at 60 Hertz. The model has all the controls to one side on a LED-lit panel. It holds the power outlets and a 4-in-1 display of total hours, running hours, frequency and voltage. There is a mounted start/stop, choke and fuel shut off control. There are three plugs – two NEMA 5-20R and one NEMA L14-30R.
The CAT is easy to transport and store as it has a double folding handlebar. The unit is mounted on a tubular steel frame, powder coated to prevent rusting. This mobility kit has wheels with never-flat tires.
This is a perfect generator for your food truck and other mobile businesses. You could also extend its use at home in the event of a blackout or recreational activities such as camping.
With a 7.9-gallon tank, it can offer a runtime of 12 hours at 50% load. The CAT offers a surge power of 8125 watts and running power of 6500 watts.
The CAT has a 3-year warranty that is activated on registering within 30 days of buying the unit. Otherwise, it has a two years warranty. All the outlets are covered to protect against elements and GFCI rated for added safety.
- powerful at 8125 surge watts and 6500 running watts
- the lithium-ion battery lasts for two years
- it could be a dual fuel generator
The Briggs & Stratton is a Fortune 1000 company that manufacture lawn mowers, pressure washers, gasoline engines, generators, etc. This unit is a part of the Briggs & Stratton Elite Series.
Design and Build
The Briggs & Stratton 30663 has a 420 cc OHV engine that offers single-phase voltage of 120/240 volts. There is a press button for an electric start with a recoil backup in case of a flat battery. This electric key start and remote choke offer a fast and effortless start from one location on the generator.
The power surge alternator produces 25 percent more surge wattage to start large tools and appliances simultaneously. There is a Lo-tone muffler to absorb noise. A single side multi-feature control panel includes twist and lock outlets with circuit breaker protection. All the outlets have a rubber cover for protection against elements and wear.
It features an hour meter that indicates the runtime and a fuel gauge for monitoring gasoline levels.There are 12-inch wheels on the mobility kit that rolls easily on all terrain. The T-shaped fold-down handle is a collapsible extension of the tubular steel frame that houses the genset.
This Briggs & Stratton Elite Series Generator powers your food truck, recreational vehicle and other off the grid activities. It is a good backup during a power outage and natural disasters. The genset is rated in accordance with CSA and PGMA standards.
The Briggs & Stratton 30663 makes 7000 running watts and 8750 surge watts. It has a runtime of 9 hours at half load on a 7-gallon fuel tank.
The Briggs & Stratton comes with a quick start guide, operator’s manual and engine oil. The battery and a float charger are included for those chilly days. There is a 3-year limited warranty.
- power surge alternator for that 25 percent boost
- electric start and remote choke for a quick start
- panel with circuit protection
- rubber covered outlets
- all terrain mobility with never-flat tires
- not parallel ready
- not bi or tri-fuel
6. Generac 5975
Generac Power Systems Inc brings you a quality product from a pioneering company in the field. Generac was the first to engineer standby generators for homes since 1959.
Design and Build
The Generac 5975 has a 389 cc OHV engine with splash lubrication that prolongs its life. The engine spins at 3600 RPM, use the 10W-30 or SAE30 engine oil to smoothen them. The engine revs up with a recoil start and is designed to withstand long hours of continuous use. The cast iron cylinders add longevity the Generac 5975.
The choke and on/off switch are on the engine. There is fuel monitor on the built-in 7,2-gallon fuel tank. A low oil shutdown to protect when the oil heats up or is low. The hour meter tracks maintenance intervals. The panel has 5 outlets – four 120V 5-20R and one 120/240V L14-30R Twist-Lock. The outlets are covered to protect against wear and weather.
The unit is cradled in a hardened 1 1/4-inch steel frame that adds strength to the mobility kit. There are impact resistant brackets and corners for added protection to the engine. The fold-down handle locks into place when raised for storage and portability. The entire rig is mounted on 9 1/2-inch solid rubber wheels.
Power your fun and emergencies with this GP Series of portable generators. The reliability and features make it a popular choice for mobile businesses and home use.
The Generac produces a surge power of 6875 watts and running power of 5500 watts. It generates 120/240 volts at 60 Hertz. The runtime is 10 hours at 50 percent load.
The box contains a manual, engine oil supply, handle and a wheel kit. The generator is Canadian Standards Association (CAS) and CARB certified. Each Generac is backed by a two-year residential warranty and one-year commercial warranty.
- low oil shutdown
- a 7.2-gallon steel tank
- runtime 10 hours at 50% load
- covered outlets
- This model is not CARB compliant
- could be a dual fuel with an LPG inlet
- could be parallel ready
7. WEN 56682
WEN has been designing and distributing power tools since 1951. WEN made a name for themselves by bringing electricity and tools together. Their R&D team have played a vital role in developing everyday tools like the soldering iron, the chainsaw, the knife, wet wheel sharpeners, sanders, buffers, electric engravers, etc.
Design and Build
The WEN 566682 has a 390cc, 13 HP air-cooled overhead valve(OHV) engine that makes it fuel efficient. The ignition is easy with a keyless electric start that is supplemented with a recoil starter. There is an automatic voltage regulator that ensures clean pure sine wave to power your electronics. It also monitors the voltage. A low-oil shutdown that protects the engine in the event of overheating of oil or low fuel levels.
The panel has a digital hour counter indicates the maintenance schedule. It has 6 outlets – four 120V-20A 3-prong outlets, one 120/240V-30A Twist-Lock outlet and one 12V DC outlet. There are a grounding nut and circuit reset buttons that protect against power surges.The wheel kit has space-saving folding handles that unfold to move the genset to wherever you need instant power.
Power your food truck or recreational vehicle, home or outdoor adventures with this WEN. You can even stay connected to the world in the harshest natural calamities or power outage.
The WEN offers a surge power of 7000 watts and running power of 5500 watts. The unit offers an impressive runtime of 11 hours at half load on a 6.5-gallon tank of gasoline.
Besides the out of the box use generator, this unit comes with an oiling bottle, toolkit and user manual. All the WEN gensets come with a spark arrestor what is mandatory according to the National Park and Forest standards. There is a two-year guarantee on all units and a nationwide service by skilled technicians.
- power indicators to show the status of the power outlets
- 6 versatile power outlets
- grounding nut and reset buttons
- could be parallel ready
- not CARB compliant
- could be made dual fuel or tri-fuel
This handsome well-designed generator with an acoustic cabinet comes from Briggs & Stratton. Backed by a century of experience and expertise their power equipment is found in every yard and home around the globe.
Design and Build
This innovative design is backed by Quiet Power Inverter Technology. Thus the 306-cc integrated alternator engine runs for 14 hours on a 5-gallon fuel tank at 25 percent load. This Q6500 QuietPower series is 60 percent quieter at 66 dBA at 25% load. It is 30% more fuel efficient as it throttles up or down according to the load.
The side panel has 7 outlets – four GFCI 120V-20A outlets; one 120V/240V -30A Locking outlet and two USB ports. The unit is designed such that it has a 45% smaller footprint and 30% lighter body. This ergonomic design is enhanced with telescopic handles with the acoustic cabinet mounted on wheels with never flat tires. The cabinet, frame and handle are made of steel. This not only makes it limited maintenance but also quieter.
The inverter produces a pure sine wave with low total harmonic distortion to protect all your devices and appliances. The appliances on your food truck that will run 24 x 7 will be safe along with microwaves etc that have microchips installed in them.
The Briggs & Stratton Q6500 produces a surge of 6500 watts and running 5000 watts of power.
The unit is covered by a 24 months residential warranty and 12 months commercial warranty with service by Briggs & Stratton dealers.
- Quiet Power Technology
- acoustic cabinet to dampen noise
- telescopic handle and wheels for easy transport
- versatile power outlets
- could be enhanced with parallel ready outlets
Generac is a respected name in the field of power equipment. They make generators for commercial and residential use. Their products are known for reliability and durability. They design and manufacture manual and fully-automatic transfer switches and other accessories necessary for backup applications.
Design and Build
This is a high-quality 389cc OHV engine that runs at 3600 RPM. The engine has a brushless alternator that produces a single phase 120/240 volt at 60 Hertz. The fuel tank is made of large and made of metal. This ensures longer runtimes and offers a lifelong durability. The fuel gauge on the tank is to monitor gasoline levels. The Decibel rating has not been measured by the manufacturer but the model is EPA compliant.
The generator has an oil alert that indicates the low level of oil in the tank. Besides, it shuts down the engine when oil overheats thus preventing fire. The hour meter to monitor the running time, this helps track maintenance intervals. The automatic voltage regulator guards the engine against a power surge.
The panel has three outlets – two NEMA 5-20R – Wall-Type and one NEMA L14-30R. They are covered to protect from rugged working conditions and environment. The mobility kit is made of a tubular steel frame that has folding handles and wheels with solid rubber tires.
The Generac weathers a storm keeps your warm with the furnace running and home lit up. Besides emergency backup, it is a perfect solution for your outdoor activities such as mobile businesses and fun.
This is an emergency grade portable generator that offers 8000 surge watts and 6500 running watts. It offers 10 hours of runtime at 50 percent load on a 7.2-gallon tank.
The unit has a 2-year consumer engine warranty and 1-year commercial engine warranty. The units are CARB and EPA compliant.
- the fuel gauge helps monitor fuel level
- powerful engine
- cast iron sleeve to muffle noise
- lo oil shutdown
- there is no idle control
- not CARB compliant
- no voltmeter
Powerhorse comes from the Northern Tool and Equipment company. It is a family business that prides itself on equipping their customers with tools that tackle challenges. They try to build lasting relationships that are unique and fun. The Northern Powerhorse line features generators, engines, pimps, washes, log splitters and compressors of unbeatable value.
Design and Build
The Powerhorse features a 420cc engine with an electric start. The 100% copper-wound head runs continuously without overheating. The alternator produces electricity with less than 5% total harmonic distortion making it safe for sensitive devices and appliances. There is an automatic voltage regulator to guard against power surges and a voltmeter to monitor current.
The low oil shut down turns off the engine when the oil level is low or the oil heats up. The panel has eight 120V-20A outlets, one 12V DC outlet and one 120/240 volts 30A outlet. The wheel kit is made of moulded steel tubes that offer strength yet make the unit light and never-flat tire wheels. There is a lockdown handle that folds away out of the way for easy storage.
Get the Powerhouse for outstanding performance and peace of mind while working at a job site or playing with family and friends. This genset is reliable during storms, blackouts or your off-the-grid sojourns into nature. The unit has a muffler and sleeve to dampen the noise which is at 75 dBA at a distance of 7 feet.
The Powerhorse portable genset produces 7000 surge watts and 550o running watts on an electric start. The Powerhorse runs for 10.4 hours at a 50 percent load on a 6.5-gallon tank of gasoline.
The unit is EPA compliant. The muffler keeps the noise levels down. The Powerhorse comes with a two-year consumer warranty and a 90-day commercial warranty.
- copper wound head for longer runtime
- a versatile panel with many outlets
- automatic voltage regulation
- Less than 5% THD safely operates sensitive electronics
- not CARB complaint
- could be turned into dual or tri-fuel
- should be made parallel ready
- battery not included