Generac GP17500E 17,5000 Watt Portable Generator Review

Generac GP17500E ReviewAlthough this nearly 400-pound generator stretches the meaning of the word “portable,” you can be sure that the Generac GP17500E will deliver enough juice to power an entire average sized home with ease.

But what else should you know about this commercial-grade model, besides the obvious?

Please read on as we take a hard look at this big gennie and see if it’s the right one for you.

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Engine Displacement & Power Output

The GP17500E is powered by a honking 992 cubic inch overhead valve industrial type of engine. Moreover, this huge power plant is coupled to an “X-Torq” governor, which reportedly further enhances power and minimizes stalling.

Generac GP17500E power plantThe result of all of this displacement is that this model can deliver an amazing 26,250 starting watts and 17,500 running watts. This is more than enough electricity to power the average sized home, and is considerably more than what some whole house standby generators can produce. No need to fear running greedy appliances like hot water heaters, blowers and clothes dryers simultaneously.  Consequently, whether you are running a business, hosting a huge outdoor bash, or powering a construction site, the GP17500E should be able to handle it, without breaking a sweat.

Finally, another great feature of the engine is that it is fitted with automatic idle control. This feature allows the engine to run at a lower idle speed when electrical demands are low so you save fuel and hear less engine noise.

Runtime & Fuel Type

The GP17500E takes unleaded gasoline, and can hold a heck a lot of it too! The good news about having a 16-gallon tank, however, is that you get a good runtime of approximately 10 hours when run at 50% load – and remember that is very likely you won’t even need to run this monster at 50%!

Start Type

Not surprisingly given the engine’s massive displacement, this model is fitted with an electric starting mechanism.

Generac GP17500E power panelPanel Outlets

With all of this power, you’d expect a very beefy power panel to match – and it is. Here are the outlets available on this model:

  • (4) 120V
  • (1) 120V 30A
  • (1) 120/240V
  • (1) 12VDC

Noise Level

No generator that produces over 17,000 running watts is going to be quiet; however, most reviewers found that the factory muffler attached to the unit did a good job at keeping sound within the realm of reasonableness. If noise is a serious concern, you can do what some users have – build a small shed around the generator and/or purchase some after market add-on mufflers.

In any event, relative to other portable generators of this size, we expect most users will find this model to produce acceptable noise levels, particularly when using it at 50% load. At maximum load even smaller gen sets can rattle quite loudly!

Size & Portability

Again, this is a very big generator that measures 48.5 inches long, 31 inches wide and 39.5 high. Oh, did we mention it was approximately 390 pounds! Nevertheless, once you’ve got the wheels on the very capable tubular frame, it in fact can be rolled around by a capable adult. There you have it, portability!

Product Warranty

The GP17500E comes with a fairly standard 2-year limited manufacturer’s warranty.

Price & Value

At its current price of roughly $2,700, the GP17500E delivers over 6 watts per dollar of purchase price, which is very good in absolute terms relative to other gas generators of any size, and is especially good given the outstanding, commercial-grade build of this unit.

Further, when you compare this generator’s output and price compared to similarly-rated standby (non-portable) units, it becomes very clear (to us at least) that is provides great value. In fact, for those seeking the most powerful portable unit around, we can’t think of a better option right now than the GP17500E.

Generac GP17500E Reviews & Ratings

Generac GP17500E reviews

This has to be one of the most popular mega-portable generators on the market today, with a current 4.5 out of 5.0 user rating on amazon.com.

Virtually all of the reviewers praised this unit for it’s seemingly limitless power-generating capability. Several reviewers indicated it ran their entire house; another user noted that it had no problem running an entire 30,000 square foot office space/warehouse! Others specifically commented on the high-quality build of the engine and wheel kit. Several comments were also aimed at the smooth and reliable operation of the electric start mechanism, in addition to this unit’s ease of maintenance – in particular, that this gen set took a standard screw-on oil filter and even came with oil/supplies needed for the first maintenance check!

There were virtually no negative comments, save one reviewer who took issue with the power panel layout. Most of the other comments were relatively neutral and expected; some reviewers were a bit surprised at the bulk and weight of the unit, it’s fuel consumption, and/or that it produced substantial noise during operation, particularly when operating under heavy load. These are very typical remarks for virtually any portable gas generator in our experience.

Overall Pros/Cons

PROs CONs
Massive power! Expensive!
Decent runtime Appetite for fuel
Outstanding American-made quality Not CARB-approved
Good value for wattage output

Concluding Thoughts & Opinions

Generac GP17500E usesIf you are looking to power and entire home, office, job site or huge outdoor bash complete with energy-demanding equipment, then the Generac GP17500E is definitely the right choice. This gennie is powerful, extremely well-made and is exactly the type of workhorse that is required for more demanding applications. In fact, there’s hardly any other model close to it in terms of output, value and quality.

On the other hand, if you don’t envision requiring so much power – for example, if you need it only for occasional running of key appliances, then this baby is overkill. And remember, at just under 400 pounds, you will need to find a suitable location to operate and store it. As some users have noted, it is a great candidate for placement in a small shed, which will help shield it from the elements and also baffle some of the operating noise. Also, keep in mind that you will need a good manual transfer switch to properly take advantage of all of this power.

To sum up, for bigtime power and a solid construction to match, we easily recommend the Generac GP17500E 17,5000 Watt Portable Generator.

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