Get this unit while stocks last, because Caterpillar discontinued its production.
Zoom on the Cat RP5500
In a nutshell, the Cat RP5500 is a portable generator mostly geared towards:
- RV travellers looking for even more independence
- People occasionally participating in outdoor fairs, festivals or events
- Food van owners who know that just a short power outage could lose them hundreds of dollars
- Homeowners who want to be able to use the most necessary devices in their household, even during a blackout
- Professionals who want to be able to deliver results, even during a power failure
Power & Run Time
The Cat RP5500 is powered by a 300 cc OHV 4-stroke engine. It delivers 120/240V, runs on gasoline and offers a running wattage of 5500W as well as a peak wattage of 6875W.
This generator is started via a simple traditional pull-start mechanism.
With a fuel capacity of 7.9 gallons, the RP5500 may run for around 15 hours at 50% load with a full tank (fuel consumption around 0.53 GPH).
The control panel features the upcoming 5 AC outlets:
Since the RP5500 bears a twist-lock L14-30R receptacle, it is transfer switch ready: it is easily connectible to a breaker box and can power your home in case of a power outage.
With its dimensions of L32.9 x W27.4 x H24.7 in, the conventional, open frame design of the Cat RP5500 offers stability and allows the generator to be raised above ground level. The device has been designed for tough environments and demanding outdoor use.
While the generator is considered to be technically 'portable' (in the sense that you can move it), manually lifting and transporting it may be challenging, due to its high weight of 178 lbs. Still, once it is on the ground, its wheel kit and its folding handle can easily solve the issue of low mobility and allow for easy relocation of the device.
The RP5500's control center features a convenient meter showing you voltage, frequency and lifetime hours to aid you with the monitoring of its status and activity. To offer you even more control and easy operation during night time, the panel is LED-lit.
The fuel level of the generator can be determined quickly, easily, and conveniently with the help of its built-in fuel gauge.
As far as security is concerned, the generator can be used with a peace of mind, as it features an overload protection (circuit breaker) and an automatic low oil shut-off.
With the basic documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab), letting you start the generator quickly, the Cat RP5500 also comes with several accessories, including: funnel, tool kit and oil. An official storage cover is also available, as a separate purchase.
The Cat RP5500 is EPA-approved and CARB-compliant. Thus, selling and purchasing this generator is allowed in each of the 50 states, including California.
Moreover, it features a spark arrestor, making it usable in forested areas.
The Cat RP5500 versus other generators
The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the Cat RP5500 compare to generators of similar power (between 5000 and 6000 W).
- At a weight of 178 pounds, the Cat RP5500 places in the expected weight range of the generators in the 5000-6000 rated wattage range. Regarding dry weight, one of the champions in the same power range is the WEN GN6000, with a dry weight of only 119 lbs.
- Thanks to an impressive running time of around 15 hours at 50% load, the RP5500 benefits from one of the highest run times among generators of a similar output
- Even though run times are undoubtedly important, they are dependent on the fuel capacity to a large extent. For a more wholesome picture, we must take into consideration the fuel consumption of the generator. This generator has an estimated fuel consumption of roughly 0.53 GPH (gallon per hour) at a 50% load, rendering it somewhat average compared to devices of a similar output. If fuel consumption is your top priority, we suggest to check out the Westinghouse WGen5300DFv, which has a fuel consumption of only 0.35 GPH and thus, is one of the most efficient devices in our database.
As you can see from this interactive chart, when compared to other 5000-6000W generators, the Cat RP5500 is on the cheap side of the price range.
It can therefore be a really good buy if you're looking to acquire a budget generator.
The bottom line
- Illuminated control panel
- Several accessories included
- GFCI Outlets
- High run time
- Decent weight (178 lbs)
- Decent fuel efficiency
- No electric start
Features and Specifications
|Engine||300 cc OHV 4-stroke|
|Voltage||AC: 120/240V 60 Hz|
|Running watts||5500 W|
|Starting watts||6875 W|
|Running amps (@120/240V)||45.8/22.9 amps|
|Peak amps (@120/240V)||57.3/28.6 amps|
|Run time @50% load||15 h|
|Run time @25% load||Unknown|
|Automatic Voltage Regulation||Yes|
|AC outlets|| |
|Fuel tank||Metal, 7.9 gal|
|Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)||32.9 x 27.4 x 24.7 in|
|Noise (lower limit)||Unknown|
|Security||Low oil and overload protection|
|Neutral||Bonded to frame|
|Accessories included||Oil, funnel, tool kit, and wheel kit|
|Other model numbers||502-3686|
Unlike many websites, we did our best to research each of the specs above. That being said, we are not immune to making the occasional mistake or omission. Should you notice any missing or incorrect values, don't hesitate to suggest improvements so we can address the issue.
Caterpillar Inc., often abbreviated as simply CAT, is an American engineering corporation, whose product range includes machinery, engines, financial products, mobile phones and of course, power generators. The company, founded in 1925, is one of the backbones of the US Dow Jones index and is placed among the Fortune 500 list. While CAT mainly focuses on industrial scale generators, it also provides a wide range of portable and household-scaled devices. CAT portable generators are engineered and designed in Mossville, Illinois, and Belfast, Northern Ireland. However, their production is outsourced to China.
The Cat RP5500 is covered under a warranty for up to 2 years. This warranty may be limited and may not cover all parts of the generator.
For more information about the warranty of Cat generators, please consult Cat's warranty policies (opens in a new tab). Alternatively, you can also contact their Customer Support: 1-844-PWR-ME-UP (844-797-6387).
Questions & Answers
What can it power?
|Item||Running Watts||Starting Watts|
|At home||Sump pump (1/2 hp)||1050||2150|
|Furnace fan (1/2 hp)||875||2350|
|Refrigerator (energy star)||192||1192|
|Total||4397 W||5872 W|
|For camping||Radiant heater||1300||1300|
|RV AC (11,000 BTU)||1010||1600|
|Total||4390 W||4980 W|
|For work||Table saw||1800||4500|
|Total||4010 W||6710 W|
What are the red brackets mounted from the engine to the frame for? Why does it say to take off and discard? Can I keep them to reinstall during transport? If I leave them on for normal operation will it mess up generator, void warranty. Please note, I have not started the generator with red brackets still on engine. (Asked October 11, 2020)
These brackets are for additional stabilization during shipping/transport. They should be removed as indicated, as continuously running your unit with them still on could, according to CAT, cause damage to the unit.
Is my cat rp 5500 water proof? If it gets wet with rain in the outside will it get damaged? (Asked June 11, 2021)
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