DuroMax XP12000EH review

DuroMax XP12000EH Review 2021

Of the three types of generators available, portable generators always stand out for most consumers since they are more powerful than inverter generators and less bulky than standby generators. However, if you're looking for a portable generator that can also double as a home backup generator, then the DuroMax XP12000EH is one generator you simply cannot overlook.

It is a high capacity dual-fuel generator that even rivals some of the modern standby generators in nearly all aspects. In terms of power, the XP12000EH shines by delivering up to 12,000 watts of surge power and can offer 9,500 watts of continuous power while running on gasoline. 

Power isn't the only thing the DuroMax XP12000EH is known for. It has a wide array of features that tend to complement almost any situation you use the generator for, and that's exactly what we'll be looking at in this review.

The DuroMax XP12000EH wasn't nicknamed "The Beast" in vain. In fact, the power output of this generator is just the tip of the iceberg as it is highly feature-packed for a portable generator of its size. Below are some of the specifications of the XP12000EH that make it stand out from the rest of the pack:

  • Peak Watts: 12,000W (Gasoline) / 11,400W (Propane)
  • Running Watts: 9,500W (Gasoline) / 9025W (Propane)
  • Voltage Options: 120V / 240V and 12V DC
  • Horsepower: 18 HP
  • Max Engine Speed: 3600 RPM
  • Engine Size: 457 CC
  • Fuel tank capacity: 8.3 Gallons (Gasoline)
  • Runtime at 50% Load: 8.83 Hours (Gasoline) / 7.2 Hours (Propane)
  • Noise Level: 74 dB
  • Product Weight: 260 lbs.

What's Inside the Box

  • Product Manual
  • DC charging cables
  • Oil funnel
  • Spark plug wrench
  • Wheel kit
  • Tool set

Comparison Table

Of course, the DuroMax XP12000EH isn't the only model in its series. In fact, there are currently five other portable generators that fall in the same series, and they all come with slightly different power outputs as well as different features.

The table below highlights the main differences and similarities between the XP12000EH and three other equally powerful generators in the same series.

Features

DuroMax XP12000EH

DuroMax XP15000EH

DuroMax XP10000EH

Continuous Running Watts (Gasoline)

9500 Watts

12000 Watts

8000 Watts

Continuous Running Watts (Propane)

9025 Watts

11400 Watts

7600 Watts

Run Time at 50% Load (Gasoline)

8.83 Hours

9.03 Hours

10.4 Hours

Run Time at 50% Load (Propane)

7.2 Hours

8.58 Hours

8.6 Hours

Fuel Tank Capacity

8.3 Gallons

8.3 Gallons

8.3 Gallons

Max Engine Speed

3600 RPM

3600 RPM

3600 RPM

Engine Size

457 CC

713 CC

440 CC

Noise Level (Lower is Better)

74 dB

84 dB

72 dB

Product Weight

260 lbs.

349 lbs.

232 lbs.

Though there are other models like the XP13000EH and the XP12000EH, the main differences between generators in this series can be noticed from the three models above. While the XPS12000EH is "The Beast", you can already tell that the XPS15000EH is the most powerful in the series.

However, power output alone doesn't make a great generator, and this becomes evident when you start looking at the other features. In terms of running time, for instance, the XPS12000EH manages to offer only 8.83 hours while the XPS1000EH offers almost 2 hours more running time.

Engine sizes are also different, and that says a little bit about the fuel consumption levels of these generators. Here again, the XPS12000EH seems to be in the middle as it has a slightly larger engine size than the DuroMax 10000EH. Its decently sized engine also allows it to be less noisy than the XPS15000EH.

What We Liked About the DuroMax XP12000EH

There is a lot to like about the DuroMax XPS12000EH because it has a good balance of the features that people actually need in a portable generator. But it also shines as a powerful generator that can also function as a home backup power solution. While other generators in the same series can deliver more continuous running watts, the XPS12000EH remains true to what it really is – a powerful and affordable portable generator that offers great value for money.

Impressive Power Output

The XP12000EH isn't the most powerful portable generator in the DuroMax series, but it could be the most practical for a lot of people. As much as generators like the XP15000EH offer more than 9500W of continuous power, standby generators may still outperform them. This is because standby generators are built to run for longer durations without necessarily requiring the same kind of maintenance that portable generators need.

This therefore means that it would be far better to go for a standby generator if you need it for its primary purpose. The XPS12000EH, on the other hand, doesn't boast as a home backup generator. Instead, we found it well-suited for people who occasionally need the power of a standby generator while enjoying the convenience and versatility of a portable generator.

Performance on Gasoline

You can expect maximum performance from the DuroMax XPS12000EH if you intend to use gasoline as your primary fuel. The generator will steadily provide up to 79 amperes if you're using 120V and 39.6 amperes if you're using 240V.

This amount of power is enough to power a wide variety of home appliances ranging from fridges to even the most demanding electric tools that you have in your workshop. In addition, since the generator's peak power output is 12,000W, there's reduced risk of overload since critical appliances can draw this much power whenever they start up.

Performance on Propane

Like the other generators in the series, the XP12000EH offers slightly lower power output when propane is used as the primary fuel. In reality though, the difference between the power outputs is not so big since it only amounts to 600W of surge power and 475W of running power. The output amperage is slightly lower as a result. You will get peak amps of 95 while using 120V and 47.5A at 240V.

It's also worth noting that the engine of the XP12000EH is what truly makes this generator a deal breaker. The engine has a speed of 3,600RPM just like the XP15000EH, but since it is of a smaller size, it is also quieter. This makes it ideal for camping or tailgating events where a lot of power is needed minus the extra noise.

While the DuroMax XP12000EH had the shorter runtimes than the three other generators in the same series, we felt like it wasn't much of an issue since runtime depends on the load. As such, this generator can provide runtimes greater than eight hours especially if you have smaller loads. This will be the case nearly all the time you use the XP12000EH as a portable generator rather than as a home backup generator.

In the case where you do use this generator as a home backup generator, you can always resort to using slightly larger propane tanks. They will give you plenty more runtime hours and will end up being cheaper than if you plan on using gasoline all through. However, you should also remember that long use of portable generators will call for regular maintenance as well.

Dual-Fuel Technology

Dual-fuel technology is something we couldn't take for granted, especially when such a feature is included in a generator like the DuroMax XP12000EH. This is because it offers the versatility that makes the XP12000EH really stand out as a portable generator that gives you a lot of value for your money.

duromax xp12000eh propane

People tend to look at dual-fuel technology in terms of how much power the generator can provide when using a particular fuel. However, there's a lot more to gain apart from power, and the fact that you can switch between the two is great for a number of reasons.

First off, dual-fuel technology gives you extra options depending on what's available to you. You needn't worry about where you're going to get a propane tank if there's a gas station a few miles away from you. In addition, if you have both types of fuel, you can get even more runtime hours by switching to the other fuel type whenever the first is depleted.

Secondly, dual-fuel technology allows you to save money whenever you can. If you find the cost of running the XP12000EH on gasoline to be too high, you can always switch to the cleaner and more environment-friendly propane. Gasoline may offer more power, but the tradeoff is that you will spend more cash on fuel if you intend to use the generator as a home backup generator.

Lastly, the technology gives you the option to choose how much power you want from your XP12000EH. In a case where you have both gasoline and propane but only need less than 5000W, propane would be the better choice because it is cheaper. Gasoline, on the other hand, can come in handy when you want to get full power from your generator.

What's more is that switching between using either gasoline or propane is as simple as pushing a button on its fully featured power panel. The ease of doing this is what enables you to get up to 15 hours of runtime especially when you have both fuel types at your disposal.

Efficiency and Versatility

A generator's efficiency has always been at the back of the minds of manufacturers because of a number of factors. For one, the more efficient a generator is, the more you will save in the long run. In addition, efficient generators are also friendlier to the environment.

The DuroMax XP12000EH takes efficiency to new heights by incorporating a set of features that ensure the generator works optimally. These said features include:

  • Idle Control
  • Low Oil Shutoff
  • MX2 Technology

Idle Control

Earlier on, we mentioned that your generator's maximum runtime hours greatly depends on the load. Well, according to the spec sheet, the DuroMax XP12000EH's runtime at half load averages at around 7-9 hours. But thanks to idle control, your generator can run for even longer because it can automatically lower its RPM whenever your load doesn't need power.

This not only means that you can run the generator for longer, but it also means that you will save on fuel as well. The XP12000EH won't have to work at its full RPM to deliver the power you need, and in turn, it will consume much less fuel than it would when a big load is connected.

If your work on the job site involves using power intermittently, then the XP12000EH's idle control is something you will greatly appreciate. What's more is that at lower RPMs, the generator will be a tad bit quieter than when it is working at full RPM.

Low Oil Shutoff

Though it can serve as a home backup generator, the XP12000EH is inherently a portable generator. Despite all the power that it can offer, it will still require the same kind of maintenance that other kinds of portable generators need from time to time. However, DuroMax includes safety features such as the low oil shutoff to protect your generator when you do forget to carry out basic maintenance.

Ideally, generators work in almost a similar way that your car's engine works. Low oil on your generator would mean that its engine is also not lubricated despite having several moving parts. Without such a feature, an engine that continues to run even when the oil is low will eventually break down.

Low oil shutoff is thus an important feature. It is useful when you intend to use the XP12000EH as a home backup generator rather than a portable generator. After all, once you fill up the generator's fuel tank and hook up a propane tank, the only action that will require your physical presence will be switching from one fuel type to the other.

MX2 Technology

At first glance, the XP12000EH's MX2 Technology seems like a convenience feature rather than something you would actually use on a daily basis. Essentially, this generator can generate power at either 120V or 240V. This makes it convenient for nearly anyone regardless of the region they come from. If you live in the U.S, you simply use the 120V outlet for your appliances. On the other hand, U.K residents can use the 240V outlet.

However, MX2 Technology gives you the ability to do more than just switching outlets. If your appliances require 120V, MX2 Technology allows you to get full power from this single outlet. In short, you can get the maximum amperage from a 120V outlet. 

RV owners are bound to appreciate this feature more because they can get full power from the generator to literally power an entire RV. MX2 Technology also comes in handy during tailgating events. If your energy requirements suddenly spike when a few more people join the event, you can always switch to the dedicated heavy-duty outlet and get the maximum power the XP12000EH has to offer.

CARB Compliant

You won't have any problems buying and using the DuroMax XP12000EH in California since the unit is fully CARB compliant. Though CARB compliance only applies to people from California, this certification will give you peace of mind that you can legally use it in other states that may be planning to adopt the same.

Many large generators are usually not CARB compliant. The California Air Resources Board (CARB) makes it illegal to use such generators in California. This is all in an attempt to reduce air pollutants and maintain health-based air quality standards. As a result, residents of California only end up investing in reliable generators.

Good Build Quality

Build quality is something that is less often talked about when it comes to generators since more people are concerned with performance. Regardless, you'd definitely want your portable generator to have good build quality especially if you plan on occasionally using it on the jobsite and at home.

The DuroMax XP12000EH's all-metal construction is the first thing you'll probably notice regarding build quality. Just like other portable generators, this unit's frame protects all the vital components. The only section where you might come across some plastic is on the fully loaded power panel, and this is for obvious reasons.

DuroMax also includes a pair of durable tires that will last for years before requiring any change. If you'll be using the XP12000EH as a home backup generator, the wheels will be the last things you need to worry about. The same is also true if you want to use the XP12000EH as a portable generator. You won't have to worry about flat tires since it uses high grade rubber.

duromax xp12000eh

Pros of the Duromax XP12000EH

The biggest advantages of the XP12000EH is that it is a portable generator that gives you the power of a standby generator, and that translates to good value for money. This generator may not necessarily outperform a standby generator in certain regards, but it does come close. Below are some of the best perks of the XP12000EH.

  • Dual Fuel Technology allows you to save on fuel cost as you can easily switch to a cheaper fuel alternative (propane)
  • The XP12000EH has a sturdy and durable design as evidenced by its use of high-quality materials
  • It has acceptable noise levels of 74dB. This is lower than what a more powerful generator like the XP15000EH has to offer
  • The unit is highly portable despite its size. It is only 28lbs. heavier than the smaller XP10000EH
  • It offers up to 12000W of surge power and 9500W of running power which is a lot for a portable generator of its size
  • You can get runtime hours of up to 15 hours at half load if you use both gasoline and propane
  • It is packed with a powerful 457CC DuroMax OHV engine that has an RPM of 3600
  • It comes with a noise reducing muffler
  • It has a CARB certification which means that you can use it in California too
  • It includes a bunch of useful features such as low oil shutoff and idle control which make it more efficient
  • The unit comes with a 3-year warranty

Cons of The Duromax XP12000EH

For some people, the size of the XP12000EH was the biggest issue. Even though this unit weighs at 260lbs., there are other portable generators that offer nearly the same power but weigh slightly less. However, we found out that the cons of the XP12000EH are directly related to what you need it for in the first place.

  • Customers complained about poor packaging and shipping of the product, but you can always resolve this by contacting customer care
  • Though portable, the generator may be a bit heavy for some people. This is especially true if you lack means of transporting it from place to place.

Who Should Buy the DuroMax XP12000EH?

At this point, you already know if the XP12000EH can serve your needs or not. After talking about its power, Dual-Fuel Technology, and its array of features, the only question that might still linger on your mind is if you really need it.

If you're buying the XP12000EH with the hope that it becomes your new home backup solution, we would advise you to simply go for a standby generator. It will give you much more in terms of peace of mind than the XP12000EH ever could. 

However, if you wanted a powerful portable generator that could at times double as your home backup generator in emergency situations, then the XP12000EH would be a good pick. RV owners, campers, and tailgaters are also more likely to benefit from this generator because of its versatility.

Conclusion

For us, the XP12000EH is a great portable generator because it has a good balance of almost everything you would want from a portable generator. It certainly isn't the most powerful portable generator in its series, but it offers the kind of power that an average household would need in an emergency situation. We also liked it because of its versatility because it can serve many purposes without really having to struggle the same way other kinds of generators would.

About the Author Billy

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