In recent years, manufacturers have been pushing the limits of what is possible from smaller generators.
In the past, you would need a relatively large unit to even develop 2000W of power. Today, we have seen from models from Honda, Pulsar, and Briggs Stratton, that a small generator can still pack plenty of performance.
The Briggs Stratton P2200 30651 portable inverter generator is one of the models that proves that strong performance can come in a small package, and it’s worth considering if you only have light needs for emergency or portable power, and also if you’re looking for a good price on a new generator.
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First Impressions and Overall Design
Like many of the smaller generators on the market, the Briggs Stratton P2200 30651 has a small footprint and a lightweight plastic design.
The motor is completely surrounded by the housing, which helps the generator to look much more modern, and more like a portable battery pack than an actual generator.
The lack of metal components might be disappointing for someone coming from a larger generator, but the payoff you get in reduced weight will be worth it for most buyers. Overall, the unit feels well-made and as ‘premium’ as is possible with a plastic device.
This model can be easily carried and moved by hand, and at 54.6lbs it is one of the most portable inverter generators that you can purchase today. If you have been looking for something that is compact yet still a serious option for backup power, then make sure you read this full generator review.
How is the Briggs Stratton P2200 30651 Powered?
Despite looking like a battery pack or a small recharging appliance, this generator actually includes a complete gasoline engine inside of the plastic shroud.
The engine is just 111cc in size displacement, but this still allows it to generate 1700 running watts, or up to 2200 peak starting watts.
1700W will be sufficient for most lightweight generator tasks, and it’s plenty for running essential appliances or lighting during a blackout or in a disaster scenario.
Gasoline power means that fueling this generator won’t be a problem, because fuel can easily be purchased from any filling station. Fuel can also be stored for extended periods of time when a fuel stabilizer is used.
What is the Total Power Output of This Model?
We touched on the power output when taking a look at the power system of the Briggs Stratton P2200, noting that there is a total of 1700W for general running.
This is a significant amount of power for a generator this small, and would be unheard of just a few years ago with compact generators.
Because of the integrated inverter design, the power delivery is clean with no major spikes or drops in voltage. This makes the power output safe for household appliances and for sensitive electronics.
What is the Total Running Time and Fuel Efficiency?
While power is obviously important when choosing a generator, the running time and fuel efficiency are also critical factors to consider. Fuel efficiency ensures that a generator is environmentally friendly, and also that it is able to run for prolonged periods of time without requiring fuel top ups.
Fuel efficiency will also have a direct impact on how expensive it is to keep a generator fueled.
At 25% load, the Briggs Stratton P2200 will be able to run for up to 8 hours from a single gallon.
At 50% load, up to four hours could be expected. Running time statistics for a generator should always be taken with context in mind, because real-world conditions are rarely identical to what the manufacturers use for testing.
If you were to have a full tank of fuel while running this generator, and were only using it to power lights and maybe to charge cell phones and flash lights, then you could expect the load to be less than 25%, meaning that running time could get close to 10 hours.
Individual use cases will always vary, and high power draw appliances will always deplete the fuel faster.
Considering the 25% load rating, this is one of the more fuel efficient units that we’ve seen, and it is comparable to top rated devices from other manufacturers, such as the Westinghouse iGen2200 that we recently reviewed.
Is the Briggs Stratton P2200 30651 Quiet in Operation?
A quiet generator is beneficial, especially when it will be used on a campsite, or at home during a power outage.
This model keeps competitive with other versions from different manufacturers, and has a noise level rating of just 59dB. This is identical to similar models from Westinghouse and Pulsar.
59dB is comparable to a light conversation, and will often be quieter than general household noise.
It is much quieter than a busy urban street, and is even quieter than most air compressors, washing machines, and vacuum cleaners. Some generators produce a lot of noise and wouldn’t be suitable for residential use. This model definitely fits into the quieter end of the scale, and the noise will never be a problem, no matter where you are using it.
What are the Maintenance Requirements?
If a generator were difficult to maintain, then it would become a hindrance to use, particularly for anyone that has no prior mechanical experience.
With a model like the P2200, you don’t need to worry about not having maintenance experience with a small gas engine, because the maintenance steps are simple and are clearly covered in the user manual.
The average user will simply need to top up gas and oil when required, and periodically check the air filter for any dust buildup.
The air filter can be cleaned or replaced when necessary, and the oil can also be completely replaced at specific intervals as recommended by the manufacturer.
Potential Applications for the P2200 Inverter Generator
Inverter generators combine the power generation and regulation/conversion system in a single package, making them extremely useful for domestic use, or for camping and other outdoor use.
If you are considering the P2200 as your next purchase, then you’ll need to know what kind of devices it could power.
The relatively high peak rating of P2200 means that this will be able to run most Energy Star certified refrigerators and freezers without other large appliances plugged in.
If you don’t need to run a refrigerator, or if you have a smaller refrigerator with a compressor that doesn’t draw much wattage, then you could be able to use this model for a number of devices simultaneously.
Consumer electronics only require a small power draw, and charging cellphones, battery power banks, laptops, flashlights etc., will not be a challenge for the P2200.
Even running an electric range, a standalone fan, and even a coffee maker, would be within the limitations of this device. Small power tools could also be used with this model, providing that you take into account their peak power draw.
Impact wrenches, hand drills, and small electric saws, are some examples of tools that could be run from this generator.
The portable nature of this model means that you can use it at home, at a camp site, on a truck, or even on a boat.
Before use, always check all of your devices for peak power draw, and consult the user manuals of these devices if you have any concerns.
Running devices in excess the maximum power draw can result in a shutdown of the generator, but a protection circuit should prevent damage. Regardless, it is not recommended to plug in large appliances without first checking that they will be suitable.
Ease of Use
While some generators can be complicated to use, the simple design of this Briggs Stratton model means that even a complete novice will be able to learn the functions of the generator after consulting the user manual.
There is no difficult learning curve, and even the maintenance is manageable for someone with no prior experience. Any household or outdoor enthusiast will find that this generator is as easy to use as other popular models from companies like Honda and Pulsar.
Which Power Outlets Are Built into the Generator?
This generator includes two 120V 20A outlets that use standard grounded household plugs. There’s also a DC 12V 5A connection, and a parallel connection for daisy chaining generators for increased power.
The connections are adequate and will serve the needs of most users. The only disappointing thing in this situation, is the lack of USB charging outputs.
Although electronic devices can easily be managed with their own chargers, having built-in USB ports can be a massive convenience, particularly when it comes to charging cell phones during a power outage.
Most manufacturers are including USB ports today, so it is surprising to see that Briggs Stratton has chosen not to include them. We hope to see these added on a future product revision, or with the next replacement model.
A 24 month limited warranty covers the generator from faulty workmanship and design. Briggs Stratton has a great reputation in North America, and contacting them for warranty repairs or other concerns should not be a problem.
The Support line for warranties and other concerns is 1800-444-7744, and is available Monday to Friday between 8AM and 5PM CST.
There’s plenty to like about the Briggs Stratton P2200 30651. The highlights include:
- Great compact design with sturdy plastic housing.
- Quiet to run.
- Fuel efficient with long running time.
- Simple control panel and a small learning curve for new owners.
- Minimal maintenance requirements.
- Great power output for a generator of this size.
- Depending on sales and where you buy this model, the price is not as competitive as other similar generators.
- No USB power outlets.
- No voltage readout (display indicators are simple LED lights).
What is the Country of Origin?
Branded as Briggs & Stratton, this generator is made under contract in China.
Has Consumer Feedback for This Model Been Positive?
It’s rare that we see perfect feedback from consumers, and this is true for the Briggs Stratton P2200 PowerSmart inverter generator.
However, even though the feedback isn’t perfect, it’s still positive, with the majority of owners awarding a favorable review. It currently maintains a 4.1 / 5-star average review on the largest ecommerce and review platform.
There has been plenty of positive feedback regarding the low noise of the generator, and even the price. While it’s not the cheapest model in its class, it is still significantly less expensive than some models from top names like Honda.
A number of users have compared it favorably to similar Honda generator models, saying that it matches performance, but with a more competitive price.
Some owners have listed the lack of outputs as a negative feature. Note that besides the lack of USB outlets, the number of 120V outlets is identical to every other generator of this size.
Some owners have also noted that the generator was louder than expected. We can confirm that the decibel rating for this model is accurate, however, some owners may want a whisper-quiet generator, which is simply not possible with gasoline engine technology.
Rated Wattage: 1700W
Surge Wattage 2200W
Rated Voltage: 120V 14A (18A Surge)
Assembled Product Dimensions: 21 x 12.5 x 17.35 inches
Engine Type: OHV
Fuel Type: Gasoline
Fuel Capacity: 1 gallon.
Running Time on 25% Load: Up to 8 Hours
Noise Level: 59dB.
Weight: 44 pounds.
How Much Does It Cost?
This generator typically retails in the $600 – $650 range, making it quite competitive, if not the most affordable model on the market.
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Starting Procedure for the Briggs Stratton 30651 P2200 Generator
- Place the unit on a level surface, ensure it is fueled and oiled, and that the outlets are not connected to devices.
- Turn the engine switch to ‘ON’.
- Push the choke lever to the ‘CHOKE’ position.
- Grasp the recoil handle and pull it slowly until resistance is felt, before pulling quickly and with more force. Repeat this until the engine starts. For difficult starts, try putting the choke lever to the halfway position.
- Once the engine is running, slowly move the choke lever to the ‘RUN’ position.
- Wait two minutes before connecting any electronic devices.
Final Thoughts on our Briggs Stratton P2200 30651 Review
If you live somewhere where hurricanes, tornadoes, or brownouts are common, then having a small generator can become essential.
Even if you’re someone who likes the outdoors but would also like the convenience of lighting and electric cooking, then you could make use of a small generator.
The Briggs Stratton P2200 is compact, relatively quiet, and easy to use. It’s similar in design and performance to a number of other small generators that we’ve looked at, but comes with the backing of a top name manufacturer.
While it won’t always be competitive on price, we still consider it a great option if you need a smaller generator. It is also slightly more powerful than some comparable models, which could make it the perfect option for your next purchase.