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Portable Generators for Tailgating: Power Up Your Game Day Fun

    portable generators for tailgating

    In this article, we’ll explore the world of portable generators for tailgating, ensuring that your game day celebration is powered up to its fullest potential.

    But what’s a tailgate party without the essentials like music, a big-screen TV, and blenders for those frozen drinks?

    To keep the party going, you need a reliable source of power, and that’s where portable generators come into play. In this article, we’ll delve into the world of portable generators for tailgating, helping you choose the perfect power solution for your game day festivities.

    The Tailgater’s Power Needs

    Tailgating is a diverse activity, and the power requirements can vary greatly depending on your setup. From grills and electric cookers to TVs, sound systems, and blenders, you need electricity to power it all.

    Imagine trying to watch the pregame show without a TV or blending your famous margaritas by hand. Not fun, right? That’s why having a portable generator is crucial – it’s the lifeblood of your tailgate party.

    Types of Portable Generators

    1. Inverter Generators

    Inverter generators are the go-to choice for tailgating aficionados. They’re compact, quiet, and efficient. These generators produce clean and stable power, making them ideal for sensitive electronics like flat-screen TVs and laptops. Brands like Honda and Yamaha offer excellent inverter generator options that won’t disrupt the tailgate atmosphere with excessive noise.

    2. Conventional Generators

    Conventional generators, while louder and bulkier than their inverter counterparts, are still a viable option for tailgating. They offer higher power output and are often more budget-friendly. Brands like Champion and Westinghouse produce reliable conventional generators that can keep the party powered up.

    Factors to Consider When Choosing a Portable Generator

    1. Wattage Requirements

    Before choosing a generator, calculate your power needs. Make a list of all the appliances and devices you plan to use and their wattage. This will help you determine the minimum wattage rating your generator should have. There are many online calculators and formulas available to assist you in this process.

    2. Portability and Size

    Tailgating involves a fair amount of moving around, so portability is key. Look for a generator that is compact and comes with handles or wheels for easy transportation. A lighter generator will save your back and make setup a breeze.

    3. Fuel Type

    Generators typically run on gasoline, propane, or a combination of both (dual-fuel). Consider which fuel type is most convenient for you. Gasoline is readily available, while propane can be more economical and cleaner-burning. Dual-fuel generators offer versatility.

    4. Noise Level

    Tailgating is all about enjoying the company of friends and fellow fans, so a generator that doesn’t drown out conversation is essential. Look for generators with low noise levels, usually measured in decibels (dB). Inverter generators are known for their whisper-quiet operation.

    5. Runtime and Fuel Efficiency

    Longevity is crucial when tailgating. Choose a generator with a runtime that matches the duration of your festivities. Additionally, opt for a generator that’s fuel-efficient to avoid constant refueling interruptions.

    Setting Up and Using Your Generator

    1. Proper Placement

    When setting up your generator, safety is paramount. Place it in a well-ventilated area, away from flammable materials and out of direct rain or snow exposure. Use an outdoor-rated extension cord to connect your appliances.

    2. Starting and Stopping

    Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for starting and stopping your generator. Most generators have a simple pull-start mechanism or an electric start for convenience. Ensure that your generator is off before refueling to avoid accidents.

    Maintenance and Safety Tips

    1. Regular Maintenance

    A well-maintained generator is a reliable generator. Perform routine maintenance tasks such as oil changes, air filter cleaning/replacement, and spark plug checks. Consult your generator’s manual for specific maintenance intervals and procedures.

    2. Safety Precautions

    Safety should be your top priority when using a portable generator. Never operate a generator indoors, as it can produce deadly carbon monoxide gas. Keep it at a safe distance from your tailgate area, and always have a fire extinguisher on hand.

    Generator Accessories for Tailgating

    1. Extension Cords

    Invest in high-quality outdoor extension cords that can reach your tailgate setup. Make sure they are rated for the wattage your generator can handle. Avoid overloading cords to prevent overheating.

    2. Parallel Kits

    If you need more power, consider a parallel kit. These kits allow you to connect two generators together, effectively doubling your power output. Check if your generator model is compatible with a parallel kit.


    In the world of tailgating, having a portable generator can make or break your game day experience. Whether you choose the quiet efficiency of an inverter generator or the robust power of a conventional one, understanding your power needs, maintaining safety, and having the right accessories will ensure your tailgate party is a roaring success. So, gear up, power up, and let the tailgating fun begin! Read about the best portable generators for tailgating.


    1. What size generator do I need for tailgating?

    The size of the generator you need depends on your power requirements. Calculate the total wattage of the appliances and devices you plan to use and choose a generator with a wattage rating slightly higher than that.

    2. Can I use my home generator for tailgating?

    Home generators are typically not designed for portable use. Portable generators are more suitable for tailgating because of their portability and ease of use in outdoor settings.

    3. Are inverter generators quieter than conventional ones?

    Yes, inverter generators are generally quieter than conventional generators. They produce a consistent and clean power output, resulting in less noise during operation.

    4. How do I store my portable generator when not in use?

    Store your generator in a dry and well-ventilated area, away from direct sunlight and extreme temperatures. Keep it covered to protect it from dust and debris.

    5. Can I use a portable generator indoors during bad weather?

    No, it’s extremely dangerous to use a portable generator indoors due to the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Always operate your generator in a well-ventilated outdoor area.

    6. What’s the difference between gasoline and propane generators?

    Gasoline generators are readily available and offer high power output, while propane generators are cleaner-burning and can be more cost-effective in the long run. Dual-fuel generators provide the flexibility of using both fuel types.

    7. Can I connect multiple appliances to my portable generator?

    Yes, you can connect multiple appliances to your portable generator using extension cords and power strips. Be sure not to overload the generator, and consider using a parallel kit for higher power needs.