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What Size Generator Do I Need for 50 Amp RV? (Answered)

Written by Edwin Jones / Fact checked by Andrew Wright

what size generator do i need for 50 amp rv

One important thing about having an RV is a properly sized generator that you can use during your RV escapade. In this case, you may ask, “What size generator do I need for 50 amp RV?”

Typically, a 50-amp RV requires a generator with at least 4,000 watts. However, to ensure accurate sizing, it’s important to consider the combined power requirements of all the electronics in your RV. To understand more about this topic, let’s discuss it further below.

Recommendations for Generator Sizes for 50 Amp RVs


A 50 amp travel trailer commonly includes a system that operates a  120v and 240v circuit capable of handling loads ranging from 6,000 to 12,000 watts. It utilizes four-wire connections, which refer to three conductors, two hot wires, a neutral, and an additional ground connection.

A minimum capacity of 4,000 watts 50 amp inverter generator is typically required for a 50-amp RV. This ensures you have enough electricity to run your RV’s essential appliances and systems.

However, to guarantee a consistent power supply, you should consider a generator for 50 amp RV that is powerful enough to power most of your RV’s equipment.

Determining the Right Generator Size


One key factor when getting the appropriate 50 amp RV generator is to consider the total load that you need. In this case, you can create a comprehensive list of all appliances and devices you plan to power in your RV.

Note down their running watts and starting watts, which can be higher than the running watts for certain appliances. Sum up the running watts of all appliances and devices to calculate your generator’s total load.

To know how many watts the appliances usually have, here is a list of the most common appliances used in an RV.

RV Appliances Starting Wattage Running Wattage
60 watts Light bulb 60 watts 60 watts
TV (LED) 17 to 230 watts 17 to 230 watts
Central AC (10,000 BTU) 1,800 watts 1,500 watts
Windows AC (10,000 BTU) 1,800 watts 1,200 watts
Microwave Oven 1,000 watts 1,000 watts
Coffee Maker 800 watts 800 watts
Induction Cooker 1,800 watts 1,400 watts
Rice Cooker 500 watts 200 watts
Laptop 50 watts 50 watts

Calculating the Generator Size


While it’s beneficial for the power rating of your generator to match your RV’s electrical system, it isn’t always necessary when determining the appropriate generator size. This is because you may not be using all of your appliances simultaneously.

Instead, you can focus on measuring the total wattage of your high-powered appliances, such as the AC, microwave oven, and induction cooker, that may run concurrently. Adding a 20% safety margin allows room for your low-powered devices. The same calculation can apply if you have an RV with 2 ac units.

Considering these factors, you can confidently choose a generator with 50 amp rv plug that can accommodate the total power calculated, ensuring you have ample power for your RV needs.

Factors to Consider When Choosing the Right Generator Size


  • Generator Weight

The weight of the generator is a significant factor to run a camper RV, particularly if you intend to travel it regularly or have a limited storage room in your RV. You can look for lightweight and compact generators that do not sacrifice power output.

  • Generator with Parallel Connection

This feature lets you connect two compatible generators, effectively doubling the power output. Having a generator with these capabilities is vital if you want to run multiple high-power appliances at the same time or if you want to extend your power capacity in the future.

  • Fuel Type

Generators can be powered by a variety of fuels, including gasoline, propane, and diesel, to power a camper. Consider the fuel type’s availability and convenience. Furthermore, consider its fuel efficiency and runtime to ensure it meets your needs on long adventures.

  • Noise Output

Noise levels can have a big impact on your camping experience as well as the comfort of people around you. In this instance, you may choose the quietest 50 amp generator to keep the peace while enjoying the benefits of a generator.

Tips for Efficient Generator Usage


To operate a generator for your RV safely and efficiently, follow the tips below:

  • For the best generator performance, regular maintenance is essential. A well-maintained generator helps to keep it working smoothly and effectively.
  • Carbon deposits can accumulate on the generator’s engine parts over time, reducing its efficiency. To maintain peak performance, clean and remove carbon deposits regularly.
  • Use high-quality fuel to ensure clean combustion and avoid fuel-related problems. To preserve efficiency and avoid any damage, use the fuel the generator manufacturer recommends.
  • Only purchase fuel from reputed suppliers to ensure quality and avoid contamination that can cause fuel-related problems.

Top Generator Options for a 50 Amp RV

When it comes to choosing a generator for your 50-amp RV, several top options can provide the power you need. Here are some highly recommended generator models:

1. Westinghouse 4500-watt inverter generator


This generator provides a peak wattage of 4,500 watts and incorporates advanced inverter technology for stable and clean power output. It is acclaimed for its quiet operation and fuel efficiency, with a 3.4-gallon tank lasting up to 18 hours.

2. Champion 3800-watt dual fuel portable generator


This dual-fuel generator can run on either gasoline or propane, offering a maximum output of 3,800 watts. It offers an electric start and easy monitoring of power output and run time depending on the fuel use.

3. DuroStar DS4000s 4000 watt RV generator


With a maximum output of 4,000 watts, this generator stands out as an affordable choice. It features a sturdy metal frame, ensuring durability, and includes a low oil shutoff feature that automatically turns off the generator when the oil level is low.

4. Champion 4000-watt DH series quiet portable generator


This portable generator offers a maximum output of 4,000 watts and features Quiet Power Technology for reduced noise up to 50% more than the traditional Champion 3,500 watts generator. It is RV-ready, parallel-ready, and can power an RV air conditioner.

Frequently Asked Questions


Can I Use a Smaller Generator for My 50 Amp RV?

Generally, you can use a smaller size generator to run 50 amp RV. However, it is not recommended, as you may limit your ability to use some of your electronics simultaneously due to insufficient power supply.

Are There Any Safety Precautions I Should Follow When Operating a Generator for My RV?

Yes, some of them are:

  • Use a transfer switch, GFCI, and the correct size of cables for safe operation.
  • Keeping your generator in a dry and open area reduces the risk of accidents.
  • Ensure that your generator is off and cool down before refueling to prevent accidental fires.
  • Store only the recommended fuel container in a cool, dry place to prevent unnecessary problems.
  • Always wear protective equipment while operating and maintaining your generator for additional safety.


In conclusion, determining the total wattage rating of all the electrical loads in your 50-amp RV will provide the answer to the question, ” What size generator do I need for 50 amp RV?” This knowledge is crucial in ensuring an ample power supply to operate your electronic devices smoothly.

Additionally, applying the tips mentioned earlier on efficient generator usage with your RV will further optimize its performance.

When seeking a generator suitable for your RV, you may consider the earlier recommendations. These generators are surely reliable and can effectively meet the power requirements of a 50-amp RV.

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