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Power Up Your Tailgating

How to Use a Generator for Tailgating

By Jim H.  |  Portable Generator Expert

Are you ready to host the most epic tailgating parties and become the talk of your friends and family?

I have tailgated nearly every season of the year and can say that†the number one thing separating an amateur tailgater from a seasoned pro†is electricity.

Obviously, you're not going to have wall outlets conveniently located at your tailgating location. You'll need an electric generator.

Why Tailgate with a Generator?

Up until now, you might have lived life without a tailgating generator, and youíve probably had some good times. Nothing beats the smell of freshly-cooking brats on a charcoal grill as you reach into the cooler for a cold one while talking stats with your buds.

Imagine amplifying that experience with electricity. It doesnít have to take much. For example, there are low-watt, solar-powered generators†out there that are silent, donít burn any gas and provide enough power for your most basic electrical needs, like phone chargers. You also won't have to worry about how to power a TV at a tailgate.

If you really want to enhance your tailgating experience, though, youíll need more power. The way I see it, there are three main types of pro tailgaters out there:

  1. The Advanced Tailgater
  2. The Expert Tailgater
  3. The Ultimate Tailgater

But before we get into that, let's establish how to pick the best tailgate generator.

What Makes the Best Tailgate Generator?

The best generators for tailgating will be inverters, which means they produce clean power that wonít fry sensitive electronics. Since your tailgating party will probably include sensitive equipment, such as television sets and phones, you shouldnít take any chances.

Learn More: What is an Inverter Generator?

You will also want to ensure your generator has the following important features:

Step Up Your Game With These Tailgate Ideas

Below are different levels of what your tailgating game could be if you invest in a proper electric generator.

Level 1: Advanced Tailgaters

The Advanced Tailgater is a traditionalist at heart but still likes some of the basic conveniences that electricity provides.

For example, you might prefer having that charcoal grill, but you also want to supplement it with a pressure cooker. Maybe, instead of buying ice, youíd like to bring an electric cooler for the soda and booze.

You also want to make sure you have a decent-sized TV for your viewing party, along with some phone chargers so everyone can post Instagram pictures about your great tailgating party.

For these users, we recommend a small inverter generator with an output of 1,000-2,200 watts. This should be plenty for a few gadgets that run without an electric motor. Youíll still have the old-fashioned tailgating experience you live for without giving up a few basic electrical appliances.

Note: If you think your appliances will consistently be using more than 80 percent of your generatorís output, consider becoming an Expert Tailgater.

Level 2: Expert Tailgaters

The Expert Tailgater takes basic electrical needs for granted at their tailgating party and expects the next level of convenience and entertainment.

Weíre talking about things like a large TV, coffee maker and kegerator, in addition to everything the Advanced Tailgater has. As great as charcoal-grilled food tastes, the Expert Tailgater goes with an electric grill to maximize fun time. Donít forget about a powerful fan to keep everyone cool on a hot day.

For these types of uses, we recommend a medium inverter generator with an output of anywhere between 3,000-5,000 watts.

Level 3: Ultimate Tailgaters

For the Ultimate Tailgater, tailgating isnít a mere hobby, itís a lifestyle. They are trendsetters and define what it means to tailgate for others. Friends and family members count down the days until they have the honor and privilege to experience the Ultimate Tailgaterís party.

In addition to everything the Advanced and Expert Tailgaters use, the Ultimate Tailgater proudly adds extravagant items like an ice cream maker, margarita blender, and nacho cheese machine for a gluttonous day of unrestrained revelry. A speaker system blasting everyoneís favorite party hits keeps spectators on their toes during the pre- and postgame.

Some will go a step further and bring out their entire RV for a mobile experience. They basically become food and beverage vendors at that point, offering everything you didn't think you needed at a tailgate.

For the Ultimate Tailgater, we recommend 5,000 watts or more. Paralleling two smaller inverter generators for double the power is another option. If there's an RV involved, there are inverter generators with RV outlets to keep things powered.

Learn More: How to Parallel Two Portable Generators

Go Team Go!†

As you can see, a portable inverter generator can take your tailgating game to the next level. Even if you donít want to become an Ultimate Tailgater, a generator is certain to improve the experience for you and your party.

NEXT: Shop Tailgate Generators