7 Generators Made In China (& 9 That Are Not)

Generators, either portable or stationary, are great additions to any house. There are various kinds of generators to choose from and a variety of qualities as well. If you want an American-made generator, it will probably cost more, but it will also be of better quality. 

This article will look at which generators China makes and who makes some of the other top generators in the world. Knowing where your generator comes from could be a big help in knowing which one you should pick. 

7 Inverter Generator Brands Made In China

There are many brands of inverter generators that get produced in China. Here are a few of China’s most popular brands and companies that make inverter generators:

Generator BrandManufacturing Location
SuzhouJiangsu, China
United Power EquipmentFujian, China
Fuan KingerFujian, China
TokingZhejiang, China
Taizhou QuinglongZhejiang, China
Foshon TanfonGuangdong, China
FullasChongqing, China

These are only a few dozen inverter generator brands made in China. They are one of the leading manufacturers of inverter generators globally, but most brands have a poor reputation regarding product quality and working environments. 

9 Generator Brands Not Made In China

In recent years, the desire to get away from products made in China has been growing. The desire for other production locations is due to several factors, including Covid, child labor in China, and the poor working conditions prevalent in Chinese factories.

For these reasons and many more, it’s essential to know what companies and brands manufacture outside of China. While the generator brands mentioned below do not have their headquarters in China, many of them still produce at least a few components overseas.

  1. Kohler – Kohler is a very reliable generator brand with its headquarters in Wisconsin, U.S.A. The brand has manufacturing facilities in Wisconsin and other states to account for high demand.
  1. Generac – Generac generators are proudly made in the United States, more specifically Wisconsin at their many manufacturing facilities. 
  1. Onan – Elkhart, Indiana, is the epicenter of production for Onan generators, but in 2010, Onan outsourced the production of engines and other parts to China. Like so many other brands, the sticker will say made in the United States, but certain parts likely get produced in China. 
  1. Honda – Honda is one of the best generator brands you can purchase, and they are made entirely in Japan. Japan has a reputation for producing reliable and excellent small engine products, and their generators are no exception. 
  1. Champion – Champion generators are made and designed in America, but their engines get produced in China. Like many other brands, Champion will say that they undergo production in America, but this isn’t completely true. 
  1. Pulsar – Pulsar generators are great products and get produced in Ontario, Canada. Pulsar generators are comparable to some of the top brands in the U.S. and Japan and have a much-deserved reputation of excellence. Their base of operations isn’t in the United States, but they’re still American-made. 
  1. Westinghouse – Westinghouse is one of the oldest manufacturers of electronics and generators in the world. They are based in the heart of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and produce thousands of products, including generators. 
  1. Craftsman – Craftsman generators, like the parent company Generac, is an American-based brand that produces excellent generators. Craftsman is a more affordable version of Generac, the leading manufacturer of generators in the world. 
  1. Predator – Predator generators are an American product that gets produced by the American tool manufacturing company Harbor Freight Tools. While they have a reputation for producing cheap but decent tools and products, generators are no exception. They come at a lower price and will have a quality and lifespan that reflects that price. 

Where Do Generator Companies Make Their Generators?

Here is a look at some of the most well-known generator companies and where they make their machines.

Briggs and Stratton 

Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, is the production site of Briggs and Stratton generators. The formation of the Briggs and Stratton company was in 1908, and they are one of the top manufacturers of generators globally. 

Briggs and Stratton have 13 facilities in the United States and eight facilities worldwide. Their locations include Australia, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, China, and the Netherlands. Additionally, Briggs and Stratton just signed a contract with China stipulating that Briggs and Stratton would make some of their small engines in factories in China. 

So while your Briggs and Stratton generator will say that American factories produced it in the United States, there’s a chance that China or another country produced at least part of it. At the very least, some components like the engine were likely made in China or elsewhere. 

Kohler

Kohler generators, much like Briggs and Stratton, are a United States-based company in Wisconsin. The town of Kohler, Wisconsin, is the namesake for the Kohler generator company. Kohler is a reliable, U.S.-based company that has a long history of producing some of the best generators available on the open market. 

Onan

Onan generators are not made in China and get produced in Elkhart, Indiana, in the heart of the American midwest. The company is named after its founder, D.W. Onan, founded in 1920. Onan generators also get produced in conjunction with Cummins generators and motors. 

However, as of 2010, Onan no longer makes their generator engines. Instead, they rely on other companies to supply them with engines. Since Onan no longer makes small engines, they now get produced in several locations, including China, Indiana, and North Carolina. 

Honda

Honda does not make their generators in China, but rather in a neighboring country: Japan. Honda generators are shipped worldwide, including to Africa, North America, Europe, and all around the world. 

Honda is one of the biggest and best manufacturers of small engines and generators globally. Even though Honda doesn’t make their generators in America, you can’t go wrong with a generator made by this brand. 

Gentrax

We’ve arrived at our first generator completely made in China, the Gentrax generator. Because Gentrax generators get produced in China, Gentrax is one of the cheapest generators you can buy, and they’re also one of the lowest quality. 

Dewalt

While most of the components involved with Dewalt generators get produced in the U.S., the engines themselves get produced in China. Dewalt is one of the leading manufacturers of tools in the United States, and their base of operations is still in America. Apart from the small engines in generators and other appliances, Dewalt is a reliable American brand. 

Champion

Champion generators are an American brand designed by American engineers, but the engines undergo production in China. There seems to be a common thread with many generator brands. Many components and designs occur in the United States, but most engines get produced in China. It’s up to you to decide whether taking a chance on this type of generator is worth the risk or not. 

Pulsar

Pulsar generators are not made in China but rather by our neighbors to the north. Ontario, Canada, is the base of operations and leading manufacturer of Pulsar generators. The company markets them similarly to Honda and Generac generators at lower prices. 

Westinghouse

Westinghouse generators get produced by the Westinghouse Electric Corporation, based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Westinghouse is one of the oldest and most reliable electronics, small engines, and generator manufacturers. They were also the first company to produce A.C. generators globally in 1891. 

Craftsman

Craftsman generators get produced and distributed by the same company that produces Generac generators. Generac and Craftsman both get produced in the U.S. rather than in China. Craftsman generators were initially made only for large companies like Sears. Eventually, however, Craftsman generators underwent production on a broader scale and are readily available to anyone and everyone.

Firman

Firman generators are another popular generator brand that gets produced in China. The company is based in Nanjing, China, and is part of the larger SUMEC company in China. 

Wen

Even though Wen’s main headquarters is in Illinois, most of their generators get produced in China. Like so many other U.S.-based products, their parts and manufacturing get outsourced across the Atlantic Ocean to Chinese factories. Originally founded to manufacture woodworking products, Wen jumped on the opportunity to produce generators. 

Predator

Predator generators are made in the U.S. by the American-based company Harbor Freight Tools. Harbor Freight produces affordable but sometimes low-quality tools and appliances to help produce goods and services. Predator generators are American-made and produced, but they aren’t the most high-quality generator on the market. 

Duramax

Like many other brands on this list, Duromax is a company founded in the United States, and its base of operations is still here. Ontario, California, is the location of their main headquarters, but most of their parts and designs occur in factories in China. The company was founded in 2003 and is pretty new to the generator game in terms of longevity and history. Because of this and the fact that they get produced in China, Duromax generators are relatively affordable. 

Yamaha

Yamaha generators are another brand that gets produced in China. If you’re looking for a high-quality generator that is Chinese-made, then Yamaha might be your best bet. They have a high standing in the public and private eye and produce some of the best generators in the world. 

Yamaha is very comparable to Dewalt in that their products are made in China but have a reputation for being reliable. Unlike Dewalt, however, Yamaha doesn’t have its base of operations in the U.S. but rather in China. 

Sportsman

Sportsman generators, along with their engines and other components, are produced in the country of China. Sportsman is another shining example of a Chinese-based brand with a reputation for making sound and high-quality equipment. 

Sportsman generators come in nearly every size and application desirable and have a reputation for excellence. They are one of the most popular non-American brands sold by stores in the U.S., and with good reason. 

Final Thoughts 

Generators are great tools that can be essential pieces of equipment to a house, shop, or workspace. When electricity isn’t readily available to a home or workers on a construction site, generators can be crucial if not essential. Choosing the right generator to fit your needs is just as essential. 

As a general rule, you get what you pay for with generators. Most Chinese-produced generators are often cheaper but are also of a lesser quality than other brands. Chinese products also have the stigma of potentially being produced by children or by forced labor.

Rumors and theories are abundant in Chinese factories, and it can be challenging to separate fact from fiction. If you want to play it safe and get a great product that’s reliable and long-lasting, then buying products outside of China is your best bet. 

Sources

Hubert Miles

I've been conducting home inspections since 2002. I'm a licensed Home Inspector, Certified Master Inspector (CMI), and an FHA 203k Consultant. I started PickGenerators.com to help people better understand whole-house and portable generators.

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