Can You Run A Tv On A Portable Generator?

  • By: Umer.A
  • Date: October 10, 2021
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The technology has advanced so much that you can even use TV on a generator. Generators directly are not the best way to watch TV, though. For that, you’d need to use a voltage regulator. It will ensure the appropriate current in a stable voltage to your TV. You have to make sure it doesn’t damage your TV.

Whenever there is a power failure or blackout due to any reason, we feel powerless. Generators have been the next best option for backup electricity.

How Do You Hook A TV Up to A Generator?

Generators are a great backup source if you want to temporarily use your TV at a campsite or at home during a power outage.

Running a generator provides inconsistent voltage. This irregular voltage can damage your TV overtime. You can add a voltage regulator to solve this issue of unpredictable voltage. A regulator limits the amount of current produced by the generator. This not only protects the devices that your generator runs but the generator too.

To run the TV from your generator with the help of a voltage regulator, first, turn off the generator. You should locate the 12-volt socket on your generator and insert your regulator’s power cable in it.

Some generators have different sockets for different voltage levels. Just make sure the socket you are using is 12-volt. If you have one socket generator with an adjustable knob, set that to 12-volts to function properly.

This is necessary. If the generator and regulator are not set on the same voltage, it can damage your generator.

Let your generator run for a few minutes before connecting your TV through the voltage regulator. After setting everything up, you’re good to turn the main switch on the generator ‘on’ to watch TV.

What About the Generator’s Noise Factor? 

Generators produce a lot of noise, and it may ruin your favorite TV show because you cannot listen to the voice. So, you should place it at a distance. If there is a distance between you and the generator, the less noise you’ll hear.

You can also use sound reflectors of plywood while placing your portable generator on a soft surface. The soft surface will absorb all the noise, and the deflectors will direct sound waves into the ground.

Apart from that, you can also use noise-canceling headphones to prevent the unwanted sound of your generating from entering your ears.

If you want to watch TV, run a few lights, you don’t need a high-watt generator. That small generator will create less noise pollution, but that too can’t be neglected.

Generator's Noise Factor

What Is the Difference Between an Inverter Generator and a Regular Generator? 

In a regulator generator, the AC electricity is directly supplied to the outlet. In an inverter generator, the high-frequency AC electricity produced is first converted into DC and back into a stable AC.

This stable current is an electric appliances-friendly current; that is why it is known as a ‘clean electricity source.’

The inverter generators produce less noise pollution than the regular generators. So, you can use them while using your TV. The inverters are a newer technology than the regular generators. It does all the things, but with better efficiency.

Can A Portable Generator Damage TV?

Yes, a portable generator’s current spikes can damage the TV. So, it can damage your TV. You can install a voltage regulator in the generator socket and connect it with your TV or other devices to save them from damage.

What Generators Are Safe For TV?

Most of the regular generators available on the market are not safe for your TV. This is because they have unpredictable voltage, surges, and voltage fluctuations. These inconsistencies can damage or even fry their sensitive circuit. To use TV and other appliances, use an inverter generator for relatively stable voltages.

Do I Need A Surge Protector for My TV While Running It on A Generator?

Surges can happen when you are using a portable generator due to an inconsistent supply of electricity. Although it affects high-powered electrical devices, it doesn’t mean your tv is an exception. There is a slight chance that it can damage your TV. So, we’d recommend getting an inverter generator for your TV.

Surge Protector

What Size Generator Will Run A TV?

TVs have comparatively small wattage than most other appliances that even a small portable generator can run your TV. But you won’t be running only the TV on your portable generator. Therefore, you need to consider other home appliances before buying a portable backup generator to watch TV.

How Many Watts Does It Take to Run A TV?

TVs vary on the type of screen, whether it is an LCD, a plasma TV, etc., and if the screen size is large or small. We can safely assume that most TVs have around 75 to 370 watts.

Can You Plug Your TV Switch Directly into Your Generator?

Yes, you can directly plug the TV switch into the portable generator, but you also need to consider the wattage. Not only that, generators have voltage spikes as well. So, to get an inverter generator, plan on using household appliances.

Do You Need an Inverter Generator for Your Television? 

The power provided by the inverter generator is much better than a conventional one. The inverter generator will automatically adjust the load. This makes the inverter generator safer for power-sensitive electronics like Plasma TVs and LCD TVs. It is more efficient, and the final AC is not as much costly.


Whenever you are stuck at your home, the best option for entertainment would be TV. So, before you connect it to your home appliances, you’d connect it to a voltage regulator.

TVs don’t use much wattage. So, if you plan on only using your TV with a few other appliances such as light bulbs and one fan, you can get a small portable generator. An inverter generator would be a better option as it can provide consistent voltage.