What Can a 1500-Watt Generator Run? – [Get the Most From It]

This article is all about answering your queries about “What can a 1500-watt generator run?”, how many appliances can I run simultaneously, and whether it is enough for my household or not.

Read on to get the most out of your 1.5kva machine!

A 1500 watts generator will be an ideal choice to power most of the essentials of camping, tailgating, and outdoor parties including microwaves, Fans, Lights, Electric stoves, Electric cookers, min fridges, sound systems, projectors, drones, cell phones, laptops, cameras, etc.

What Can a 1500-Watt Generator Run?

Starting & Running Wattages of a Generator

Starting/Surge Watts: Maximum watts a machine can produce for a short time to power up motorized/compressor-based tools/appliances including the air conditioner, air compressors, sump pumps, etc.

Starting/surge watts will always be higher compared to running watts.

Running/Rated Watts: Maximum watts a machine can produce for a long time to stably run an appliance with steady voltage and frequency.

Running watts will always be lower compared to the starting watts.

What Appliances Can I Run With a 1500W Machine?

ApplianceStarting WattageRunning Wattage
Phone Charger010
Powered Drill Cordless0100
String of outdoor lights040
Coffee Maker0800
Microwave0800 – 1200
75 Watt Light Bulb075
Camping Refrigerator500350
Refrigerator900200 – 1000
50 Inch LCD TV0150
Power Drill Corded0800-900

Recommended Read: What appliance can I run with a 2500 watts generator?

What Appliances Can’t Be Run With a 1,500 Watt Generator?

ApplianceStarting WattageRunning Wattage
Electric Oven (3500W)3500W3500W
Hair Dryer (1875W)1875W1875W
Air Conditioner (10,000 BTU)2200W – 3200W900W – 1500W
Electric Water Heater4500W4500W
Portable Air Compressor (1 HP)3500W1200W

How Many Appliances Can a 1500 Watt Generator Run Simultaneously?

It depends on the power ratings of the appliances you are going to power at the same time.

E.g. If you are going to power 6 appliances of 250w you don’t have access to power another one, however, within the limit of 0 –  1500 you can power as many appliances as you want.

NOTE: Keep a margin of 10 – 15% so that the machine can run smoothly without cranking sounds.

The small margin will not only keep your appliances safe from fluctuating voltages but also save your maintenance and repair costs down the road.

Simple Method to Determine the Power Requirements:

  • Write down the appliances/equipment you are going to run with their starting and running watts. You can find the power ratings from the energy labeling of the specific appliance.
  • If you found the power rating in amperes and you are not comfortable doing the calculations in amps, make sure to convert the amps into watts with the help of “Ohm’s Law”

Ohm’s Law: W (watts or kilowatts) = Amps (amperes) X V (volts)

E.g. an appliance/equipment needs 5 running and 6 starting amps at the voltage of 120V.

W (watts or kilowatts) = Amps (amperes) X V (volts)

Running watts: 5 X 120 = 600

Starting watts: 6 X 120 = 720

  • Sum up the starting and running wattages of the appliances and make sure to keep them in a separate column.
  • Compare the starting and running wattages with the machine you are going to purchase.

Practical Example:

AppliancesRunning wattsStarting watts
50” LED TV1500
Camping Refrigerator350500

From the above calculations, we got 1400 running and 975 starting watts, hence a solid 1.5k machine like ALLPOWERS S1500 will be more than enough for this quotation.

Will a 1500 Watt Generator Run a Refrigerator?

It depends, a normal-sized refrigerator with 500 – 1200 watts can be easily operated by a 1500 watts machine, however, a jumbo-size refrigerator with a freezer requires a bigger machine of 2500 – 3000 watts.

How Long Does a 1500-Watt Generator Run?

It depends on the size of the fuel tank, efficiency, and how much load you are pulling from the generator. Typically a normal 1500-watt generator should provide at least 7 – 9 hours of runtime at 25% load, however, if you increase the load you may find a visible difference in fuel consumption.

In addition to that, an inverter generator is way more efficient, portable, and quiet compared to ordinary ones. If you are concerned about fuel efficiency, portability, and noise level make sure to shortlist a machine from the inverter generators.

What Is a 1500-Watt Generator Good For?

Below are the ideal scenarios where a 1.5kw portable generator will be a helping hand for us.

  • Camping
  • Tailgating
  • Outdoor parties
  • Boating
  • Powering basic low-power-hungry appliances like fans, lights, sound systems, drones, cameras, laptops, cell phones, etc.

Will a 1500 Watt Generator Run an Air Conditioner?

It depends, a normal air conditioner of 5000 – 6000 BTUs will not be a problem for a 1.5kw machine, however, if you have a larger air conditioner of more than 13000 BTUs, consider a bigger generator of at least 5kw (What appliance can I run with a 5000 watts generator).

Recommended 1500 Watt Generators


Though a 1500-watt generator can be a good addition to your camping journey because of its portability, efficiency, and noiseless operation, still for a whole house I recommend you to get a bigger one unless you only have to charge a few devices, power up the basic essentials like lights fans, TVs, etc.

To ensure that the machine you are purchasing will be sufficient for the whole house, we also recommend calculating the wattage of your house first.

Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs

Will a 1500 Watt Generator Run a 5000 Btu Air Conditioner?

Yes, a 5,000 BTUs air conditioner needs about 400 – 500 watts which isn’t a big deal for a 1.5kw unit.

Will a 1500 Watt Generator Run a Space Heater?

Depending on the size and efficiency of the space heater you own, a normal space heater of 500 – 1300 watts will not be a problem for a 1500w generator.

Can a 1500 Generator Run a TV?

Yes, a standard TV needs about 100 – 250 watts; you can even power 3 – 4 of them.



Kashif has been a valuable asset to the electric generator industry for over 5 years. Now, As a skilled energy engineer, he’s been on the front lines of diagnosing problems, fixing broken parts, and performing routine maintenance tasks to keep generators running smoothly.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *