Meet the affordable alternatives to the Honda EU2000i & EU20i generators

Meet the affordable alternatives to the Honda EU2000i & EU20i generators
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If you’re in the market for a Honda generator, the chances are you’ve been eyeing up the Honda eu20i or Honda eu2000i generator. For good reason, too; after all, these generators are highly regarded as two of the best quality generators in the Australian market.

Honda eu2000i: good, but expensive

Honda eu2000i: good, but expensive

The problem is, you may also have noticed the price…it’s a lot to pay out for a generator. Even if the generator is considered to be the Honda flagship generator.

The good news is, at MyGenerator.com.au we have word of some generators that offer you similar benefits as the Honda EU series – without the hefty price tag.  These alternatives cost approximately one-third of the price of the Honda Generator eu2000i which can cost anywhere from up to around AU$2,000. These budget models are fit for certain types of applications (but not all), so you can save yourself some money if your intended use is appropriate – read on and we’ll explain 🙂

The main budget contender is the Cromtech 2400W Inverter Generator. This is our number one pick for a value alternative. This Cromtech unit has quickly become a camping favourite and produces a maximum of 2400 watts and 2100 watts continuous, including quiet operation producing a mere 52dB at a distance of seven metres. That means no complaints from your campsite neighbours – neither human nor animal! Like the Honda EU series and the Yamaha 2kVA, the Cromtech Outback inverter generator produces clean sine-wave current without surges. It also houses a 5 litre tank for 6 hours running time (75% load) on normal unleaded petrol for complete convenience in the great outdoors.

Cromtech is backed by a national service network

Cromtech is backed by a national service network

Like the Honda EU series, the Cromtech Outback Inverter Generator also boasts a lightweight compact design, 2 x 15 amp outlets and USB charging outlets. But what really sets it apart is the fact that it is supported by Australia’s own Crommelins Machinery award-winning national service and spare parts network – this is one of it’s most compelling features; most budget brand Chinese-made generators don’t have an accredited service agent network – Cromtech does, and as a result it is our recommended budget inverter generator.

The Cromtech Outback 2400 sits at under AU$1000, and it comes with a free cover to keep dust out while it’s in storage.

Another budget brand inverter generator made in China which also has a national Service Agent backing is Supaswift. These Supaswift generators are backed by All Power Industries and supported by the All Power nationwide Service Dealer and Spare Parts Network.

The Bottom Line?

The numbers speak for themselves – and so do your research and consider some alternatives before you pay too much. The main message we tell our customers is this: if you only intend to use your generator infrequently or as a standby power reserve, then Cromtech or Supaswift represents a good value for money option… however, if you intend to use your generator more intensively then a premium brand like Yamaha or Honda which are designed to handle more regular demands, have longer warranties and also have excellent national service networks / after sales support – you can justify the higher cost as you’ll be using it more.

So, if you decide that a renowned Japanese premium brand, slightly higher spec’d generator with a longer warranty is for you, then we urge you to also check out the revealing Yamaha vs Honda Generator comparison article: Battle of the Premium Inverter Generators. If you are paying top dollar, then you want to make sure you get the best of the best.

For more helpful information, checkout www.mygenerator.com.au

Sean Connolly

Sean Connolly

Managing Director at My Generator
Sean is the co-founder and Managing Director of My Generator (mygenerator.com.au)
Sean Connolly

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Comments

  • Ben Macarthy November 20, 2014, 4:24 am

    Interesting read Sean. What is the go with service agents for these units? …where can you get it serviced or repaired?

    Thanks,

    Ben

    • My Generator Admin November 26, 2014, 8:33 am

      Hi Ben, if you require the unit to be inspected under warranty then it will need to be looked at in Lectron’s servicing facility in Sydney. They do not have a national service newtork…this is one of the benefits of paying for the premium brands such as Yamaha; they have over 200 accredited service agents nationwide. However, if you just want the Lectron serviced (not inspected under warranty), then you can take it to your local mower or small engines shop and ask them to quote for a service like any other piece of power equipment. Cheers!

  • Chris Vandenberg November 20, 2014, 4:30 am

    I’m interested as to why these are so much cheaper than the Honda or Yamahas if they basically have the same specs and power output? Will these Lectron’s just pack it in after 6 months? Any help providing customer confidence would be much appreciated. Thank you, Chris.

    • My Generator Admin November 26, 2014, 8:28 am

      Hi Chris – good question. Chinese manufacturing has come a long way in many cases – in fact that even some premium brands are using parts manufactured in China and Taiwan nowadays. However, not all Chinese Generators are made equal – there are some reliable brands and some not so reliable. Lectron is a Chinese manufactured brand that we have tested and our customers have good experiences with…we like two main things about them: Firstly they actually deliver the power output as stated (many Chinese brands on eBay claim they produce 4000 watts, when they actually struggle to put out 3000 watts!), and Secondly they come with a 2 year warranty, which is better than most other Chinese brands which are only 12 months (or less). They do not have a national service network, and just provide parts support from their facility in Sydney…this is one of the benefits of paying for the premium brands such as Yamaha; they have over 200 accredited service agents nationwide.

      Essentially, we recommend the Lectrons as a good value for money option for infrequent use and for back up if required. If you plan to use the generator fairly often and for longer periods, then go for a premium brand like Yamaha.

  • Con Malceski November 20, 2014, 5:05 am

    Hi,
    For recreational uses, is the Honda or Yamaha better?

    – Con

    • admin November 26, 2014, 4:17 am

      Howdy Con; we get this question quite often. Both Honda and Yamaha produce 2000w inverter generators that are the best recreational generators available; terrific for camping, 4×4 adventures, fishing, small DIY jobs, market stall, small outdoor events etc. Honda have the EU20i and Yamaha has the EF2000iS: both come with a four year warranty and national networks of accredited service agents. But, when it comes to comparing the details of the specifications between the two, the Yamaha just wins. It is slightly lighter, quieter and more fuel efficient, and also includes a few extra features which the Honda doesn’t. To find out more and see a comparison of the two models, check out this article: Yamaha vs Honda 2000w generator.

  • Helen Duggan November 24, 2014, 4:28 am

    Hello Sean,

    My husband and I are interested in the 3500 watt generator and we wanted to ask you what is the difference between these Lectron Chinese made generators and the many other Chinese brands out there? The price for the Chinese brands are appealing, but we are unsure which brand to trust, as most of them are not known to us.

    Thanks and regards,

    Helen and Rob.

    • admin November 26, 2014, 3:49 am

      Hi Helen – great question! Chinese manufacturing has come a long way in many cases – in fact even some premium brands are using parts manufactured in China and Taiwan nowadays. However, not all Chinese Generators are made equal – there are some reliable brands and some not so reliable. Lectron is a Chinese manufactured brand that we have tested and our customers have good experience with…we like two main things about them: Firstly they actually deliver the power output as stated (many Chinese brands on eBay claim they produce 4000 watts, when they actually struggle to put out 3000 watts!), and Secondly they come with a 2 year warranty, which is better than most other Chinese brands which are only 12 months (or less).

      Our most popular Lectron Generator for Caravans is the Lectron EC3500 as it produces a peak of 3500 watts: enough to run your caravan A/C. Overall, when it comes to choosing between a ‘value for money brand’ like Lectron or a premium brand like Yamaha, there are a few important questions to ask yourself, which are outlined in this article here: http://blog.mygenerator.com.au/premium-brand-or-value-for-money-generator/ This will help you decide whether a Lectron is right for you or not. Thanks!

  • Grant Colliver December 3, 2014, 5:52 am

    Will a 2000 watt sized generator be enough to run my camping gear?

    • My Generator Admin December 3, 2014, 7:30 am

      Hi Grant – a 2000 watt inverter generator is a very popular size for camping. They are great for running fridges, lights, laptops etc, as well as recharging your battery packs. However just to be sure 2000 watts is enough to run everything you want to when camping, it is best to first determine the exact wattage amounts your appliances will draw. This wattage info can be found on the data plate or within the product manual. We have a simple step by step guide to take you through what size generator you need right here: Generator Buyers Guide Take a look at the guide just to be certain that 2000 watts will be enough to run all your camping appliances. You don’t want to be left short!
      Thanks.

  • Bridgit May 23, 2015, 12:36 pm

    Hi, am off grid with a 12v solar system that runs my fridge, lights, mobile charger, water pump etc. just want to be able to vacuum with a Dyson dc23 (1400watts) and a 800 watt microwave and a toaster – not all at the same time of course. Would be used every 2nd weekend, vacuuming would take say 90 mins, microwave and toast would be 30 mins per weekend maximum. I am in Nooroo so if item fails I guess I have to take it back to Sydney. Your thoughts on best options. Most of the forums say stick with Honda or Yamaha. Hmmm…

    • My Generator Admin May 24, 2015, 11:53 pm

      Hi Bridgit, thanks for your question. In your case, I would recommend you opt for a premium brand like Yamaha or Honda. Given you will be using it somewhat regularly going forward, then it makes sense to go with a brand that will a) withstand your fortnightly demands for many years to come, and b) have a national service network in case you need to get the generator serviced or inspected under warranty by an accredited service agent – for example I know Yamaha have agents in Cessnock, Newcastle and Maitland which are close to your location.
      Budget cheaper brands really best for infrequent use, i.e. having one in the garage on standby in case of a blackout so you can keep the fridges running and some lights on, or light recreational use. For your intended application, it is better to outlay a bit more money from the outset to get a premium brand that will run your appliances every 2 weeks for a long time coming.
      Last word of advice would be to just check the starting wattages of your vacuum, microwave and toaster – anything with an electric motor or heating element can draw 3 to 4 times the running wattage, so just be sure to double check these exact starting wattage numbers to ensure you get the right sized generator. Cheers, Steve.

  • darryl gatfield February 18, 2016, 9:24 pm

    Great questions asked and very honestly answered….it speaks volumes for your company and i really appreciate the articles. ..im also deciding between cheap or premium brand….its for use when brownouts happen at night just to run the lights and fridge at my house in the Philippines. ..generators are very very expensive there….thanks again..

    • My Generator Admin February 18, 2016, 10:14 pm

      You’re welcome Darryl. As mentioned, there are some budget brand generators that serve the purpose of occasional use such as your application. For more regular use or for multi-purpose applications, a premium brand is recommended. Premium brand generators are built to a higher standard and come with comprehensive service and warranty support, which the budget brands do not have. All the best – cheers, Steve

  • Ian May 13, 2016, 10:36 am

    I have a backyard woodwork shed that I use maximum 3-4 days per week. I need to run things like power table saw, drill press, bandsaw, router, hand power tools etc, dust extractor but usually one thing at a time plus fluro or LED lighting. Maximum draw is less than 2000W ( usually 2 x 750w)for short periods, few minutes on then off. Would you recommend a Honda or Yamaha 2000W or one of the cheaper Chinese generators. What are the pros and cons of buying a used Or demo Honda or Yamaha to save a few dollars on a more reliable unit.

    • Lachlan Adams May 16, 2016, 12:34 am

      Hi Ian, all very good questions! It’s good that you know your maximum power draw requirements – in terms of either the Yamaha or Honda 2000w models, they are both great units and you can’t really go wrong with either. You can read in more detail this article here which compares the two: Yamaha vs. Honda 2kVA Inverter Generator Showdown: Yamaha EF2000iS vs. Honda EU20i.
      In terms of a cheaper Chinese made option versus a Premium Brand option (like Yamaha or Honda), I would caution against most of them. The main reason being the lack of after sales support, warranty support and spare parts availability – most of the cheaper brands don’t offer these. For infrequent use, you may get a good run from a cheaper unit for a while, but ultimately you’ll likely need a spare part or the generator inspected by a qualified service agent – this is where you’re often left high and dry with a cheaper Chinese ‘budget’ generator. One of the few exceptions is a brand called Cromtech – it has a newly released 2400w inverter generator which is supported by a national service agent network with hundreds of accredited agents backing the product.
      Lastly, in terms of a used/second hand generators – we don’t really encourage this. We’ve seen too many customers burned by purchasing a used generator and just inheriting issues from the previous owner’s neglect. Here is another article which looks at the pros and cons of used generators in more detail: Don’t buy a used generator until you read this.
      Thanks.

  • Greig July 18, 2016, 6:00 am

    Hi Steve,
    I am looking for a generator for my yacht. The intended use is as a backup to charging the house batteries, alternative to the generator attached to the diesel, by plugging into the shore power system. Also I wish to run a 1000W microwave occasionally. We use the boat every 2-3 weeks over the weekend, but I only expect to use the generator 2-3 times a year max. I want it to be reasonably quiet. Also, I have limited storage space.
    I am looking at the Cromtech, seems to have the right specs. 2.4kW , 59dB at 7m, small dimensions. I find it hard to justify paying over twice the price for the Yamaha. Am I thinking correctly, is my logic sound?
    Greig

    • Lachlan July 19, 2016, 1:42 am

      Hi Greig, the Cromtech Outback 2400w inverter generator is very popular for charging batteries (via a battery charger) and for small household appliances like you have in mind – just check your microwave doesn’t peak at more than 2400 watts as the 1000 watt rating is its running power, not start up peak power.
      For your level of intended use, the Cromtech is perfect – designed for recreational, infrequent use and you can use it knowing you have the backing of a national service support network, so if it needs servicing, spare parts or work under warranty then you are covered.
      The Yamaha inverter generator range is also extremely popular – yes, they are more expensive, but you get a longer warranty (4 years), slightly better specs and they are built for more intensive use if you need your generator more regularly. Yamaha is of course also backed by a large national service agent support network.
      In summary, you are on the right track with the Cromtech 2400w model for your type of intended application – its the recommended budget recreational/occasional use inverter generator.
      One last thing – just remember that all of these portable inverter generators are not marinised. For boating, fishing, yachting applications many people use inverter generators exactly like the ones you are considering – but excessive exposure to sea water/air can cause corrosion which is not covered under warranty, so best to cover up your generator wherever you can in a marine environment. Thanks

  • Derek January 13, 2017, 11:57 pm

    I investigated the Supaswift and both emailed and phoned Allpower. They could not reliably find either a South Australia retailers or Service agent for me. All the places in Adelaide that were listed as Supaswift sellers stocked a different brand of generator. This was telling. They may be distributed by Allpower but I rather buy a product from a shop willing their back their product.

    • L Adams January 16, 2017, 1:33 am

      Hi Derek, thanks for your interest. Please see the following comment from All Power regarding their network backing their products:
      “We (All Power) have a national service dealer network of more than 450 dealers. Not all service dealers are stockists and some may not carry specific brands or products, but most should offer back up service for our various brands. There are exceptions to this, and in the event of a remote location where there is no service dealer we would make arrangements with a local small engine repairer through our contacts to carry out any required service / warranty procedures.”
      Thank you.

  • Ian January 16, 2017, 11:58 pm

    I originally bought a Generac 2600 generator from you. After a few hours operation over a few months the recoil starter mechanism failed. Icontacted you and you referred me to Allpower for warranty service. When I contacted Allpower they initially were unable to provide details of more than one service agent in the northern suburbs of Brisbane. I contacted this agent and their first question was “did you buy the generator from us?”. They then went on to say that they were busy and would not be able to even look at the generator for five weeks. I shopped around and found another nearby dealer who was willing to look at the unit. They also asked “did you buy the generator from us?”. They looked at the generator and eventually fixed it under warranty in under a week. However, they warned me against trying to get warranty service from anyone other than the original sellers as they get more than enough business servicing things they originally sold. Overall I got the impression they were doing me a favour (and I am glad they did) rather than performing what should have been a straightforward legitimate warranty repair. I can appreciate their attitude towards retailers who are not also service agents. I realise the industry is going through a transition between bricks and mortar shops vs online retailers, but this is a major issue that needs to be addressed by online sellers.

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