Typical Appliance and Tool Wattage Table

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The following table complied from many free sources should only be used as a guide line to help you initially determine a probable wattage range for picking a generator. You’ll need to review the two following posts for additional information on choosing the right size of generator.

How Many Watts Needed for Portable Generator? and

 How Many Watts Do I Actually Get to Use with My Portable Generator?

In addition, the two primary ways to determine your needs is to look up the actual information in an owners manual or appliance name plate, or to use one of the following wattage meters to measure actual use.

Wattage meters here

Reliance Controls THP103 AmWatt Generator Appliance Wattage/Amps Load Tester

 AGPtek® Digital LCD Electricity Usage Monitor Watt Voltage Amps Meter

Typical Wattage Ranges for Appliances and Tools

Fixed or Larger Appliances

ItemRunning WattsSurge Watts
20-Inch Box Fan200
Automatic Washer11502300
Ceiling fan10-50
Clothes dryer (electric)3400
Clothes washer425
Dishwasher (Cool Dry)7001400
dryer clothers - electric (n/a)4000
dryer clothes gas heated300-400
Electric Clothes Dryer57501800
Electric Range: 8” element21000
Electric stove smaller element15000
electric stove (each element)1500-2801
Fan - Ceiling120
Fan - Whole house500
Fan - Window150
Freezer small50-150
Garage Door Opener350-5500-550
Gbg. disposal450
heater waterbed400
hot plate1200-25000
Microwave at 625w625800
Milk Cooler11001800
Oven - Range electric2100
Pump Sump at 1/2 hp1000-11001000-4000
Pump Sump at 1/3 hp750-8001400-3000
Range (electric)4500
Refrigerator Dorm Size350500
Refrigerator / Freezer500-800500-2000
RV AC 7,000 to 15,000 BTU1500-2800600-2500
Security System100-180
Single Element Hot Plate (Home/RV/Camping/Tailgate)750
Space Heater1000-2000
Sump pump 1/2HP10502150
Sump pump 1/3HP8001300
television - 19" color TV or monitor160
Television 20-inch (LCD)50 - 75
Television 26-inch (LCD)110 - 150
Television 36- to 42-inch (Plasma)250
Television 50- to 60-inch (Plasma)340
television vac tube300-500
Washing machine500-9201000-2500
washing machine manual300
water heater (40 gal)4000-5000
Well pump (deep well)700
Well water pump10001000

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ItemRunning WattsSurge Watts
air compressor (1 HP)1500 -20003000
Air conditioner Central 10,000 to 40,000 BTU1500-60004500-18000
Air conditioner Room 10,000 to 12,000 BTU1000 33003000-10000
Air Conditioner *7000 BTU to 10000 BTU1000-15002000-5000
Furnace blower300-1000300-2300
Heating central400-1500
RV Low Profile Air Conditioner, 13,500 BTU Heating16002300

Central units can require generator sizes of greater than 10kW. A/C’s are a very difficult load because of the high start-up surge. (Use the Locked Rotor Amps to determine the start up surge requirement).

Small Appliances

ItemRunning WattsSurge Watts
Blow dryer900-15000
Blow dryer10000
box fan300600
Cappuccino Maker12500
Clock Electric30
Clock Radio1 to 500
Clock radio3000
Clothes iron14000
Coffee Grinder1000
Coffee Maker (Home/RV/Camping/Tailgate)8000
Coffee pot2000
Coffee pot (10 cup)12000
Coffee pot (4 cup)6500
Crockpot (Home/RV/Camping/Tailgate)250-4000
Electric Fry Pan13000
engine block heater150-10000
Food Processor/Blender (RV/ Camping/Tailgate)350500
Frying pan600 - 12000
Griddle/Deep Fryer (Home/RV/Camping/Tailgate)12000
Hair dryer16000
heater stock tank1000
Light bulb Compact fluorescent4-250
Light bulb Incandescent (as stated on bulb)5-3000
Popcorn popper2500
Portable stereo10-300
radio telephone transmitting40-1500
Satellite dish30+0
Sewing Machine1000
Table fan10-250
television - 12" b&w300
Toaster (Home/RV/Camping/Tailgate)850-12500
Toaster Oven12000
vaccuum handheld1000
vaccuum upright200-7000
Vacuum cleaner300-13000
Waffle iron12000
Water Pik1000

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ItemRunning WattsSurge Watts
AM/FM car cassette8+0
AM/FM Radio / CD Player'1000
Car stereo80
CB radio50
CD or DVD Player350
Cell Phone Battery Charger100
Cell Phone Charger100
computer CPU & Monitor1250
computer Laptop250
computer - pc & monitor200-4000
computer desktop80-1500
computer laptop large50-750
computer laptop small20-500
computer- printer-inkjet60-750
Computers Desktop600-8000
Computers Fax600-8000
Computers Laptop200-2500
Computers Monitor200-2500
Computers Printer400-6000
Desktop Computer3000
DVD player/ VCR1000
DVD player/VCD1000
Electric blanket80 - 2000
Game Console (X-Box)1000
PDA, iPod, iPhone, Blackberry, Cell Phones800
TV 13" color TV/VCR Combo2300
TV 13-Inch (Home/RV/Camping/Tailgate)1000
Video Game Console2000


ItemRunning WattsSurge Watts
1" drill 10000
1/2" drill7500
1/4" drill2500
12" 3 speed table fan2300
12" chain saw 11000
14" band saw 11000
3" belt sander 10000
3/8" drill5000
6 1/2" circ. saw10000
7 1/4" circ. saw900- 1200+0
8 1/4" circ. saw1400-18000
8” Bench Grinder14002500
9" disc sander 12000
Airless Sprayer 1/2 hp6000
Band Saw12000
Chain Saw 14" Electric12000
Christmas Lights (50-string, small) (RV/Camping/Tailgate)200
Circular Saw15003000
Circular Saw 7 ¼”18004500
Disc Sander12000
Drills: ½”, 5.4 Amps600900
Drills: 3/8”, 4 Amps440600
Electric Chain Saw: 10” Table Saw18004500
Electric Chain Saw: 14” bar, 2 HP11000
Electric drill600900
Electric Fence, 25 miles25000
Electric Welder: 200 Amp AC90000
Electric Welder: 239 Amp AC @ 100 Amp78000
Hedge trimmer4500
Indust Motors Capacitor Start Induction Run 1.0HP16004500
Indust Motors Capacitor Start Induction Run 1/3HP7201300
Industrial Motors Split Phase 1/2HP8752300
Industrial Motors Split Phase 1/4HP6001000
Jig Saw3000
Mini Christmas lights (50)250
mower electric15000
Outdoor Buglight (RV/Camping/Tailgate)1000
Portable Grinder13800
Portable Heater (Kerosene, Diesel fuel)400-625600-1000
Prussure washer 1.0HP12003600
reciprocating saw9601040
Sabre Saw5000
saw- miter12001200
saw- radial arm20002000
Saw-radial arm20002000
Shop Vac 5 hp10000
Table Saw18000-500
Vacuum pump 2 HP10002300
Weed eater5000

Guide Table

This table will help you develop your own calculation for determining your generator needs. Remember it’s a start and there are other considerations you should look at. Our reviews will help you with that other information. You can print this table for your use at the buttons to the right above the table.

ItemRunning WattsSurge watts
Base Load Appliances
Base load = sum of above- - - - -
Alternating Appliances
Max alt Load = max load from above- - - - -
Max Surge Load = max all surge loads- - - - -
Margin for Elevation 3.5% x elev x Max
Sub Total Max + Elev Margin
Margin for unknowns add 10 to 20%
Generator Size = max load + margins
Surge capacity add ~20 to 25% to Gen size- - - - -
Surge ability = Max Surge W - Base Load- - - - -

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Often the users of portable generators buy the wrong size of generator and do not get enough power for there needs. Use the above table to help you summarize your appliances and get the proper size for your needs.

Be sure to check out the two articles referenced above as they will help contribute to your understanding of need and use and thus help you buy the generator for your needs.

Note: This is only an aid and in no way guarantees you will get what you need as there are a lot of variables that one cannot account for in the decision process. You as the consumer are still responsible for your choices and decisions.

It is my hope the information provided assists you in making a better and informed decision on your portable generator power needs.

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