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 wishing to enhance their freedom and nomad lifestyle
- Occasional participants of outdoor events, competitions, concerts and festivals
- Food truck owners who want to ensure that their business is fully self-contained and does not rely on potentially unreliable external power
- Homeowners who want to be sure of their ability to power their fridges, cooking tools, heating and lighting equipment during power failures
- Professionals who want to ensure that a power failure will not prevent them from working
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.
The generator features a simple traditional pull-start mechanism.
Thanks to a fuel capacity of 7.9 gallons, the RP5500 can operate 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:
Due to the featured twist-lock L14-30R receptacle, the RP5500 is transfer switch ready: you may connect it to a breaker box to power your household during a power outage.
The Cat RP5500 has a conventional, open frame design, of the following dimensions: L32.9 x W27.4 x H24.7 in, which offers support and allows it to be raised above ground level. The generator is designed for ideal use outdoors and in rough environments.
Even though this device may be technically portable (as in movable), manipulation and transportation without special equipment can be a challenge, as it weighs 178 pounds. However, its challenging mobility is solved by its wheel kit and its folding handle, which will ease its displacement, once it is on the floor.
The RP5500's status and activity may be monitored conveniently via the control panel, as it features a convenient meter, which displays voltage, frequency and lifetime hours. 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.
From a security point of view, the generator is equipped with an automatic low oil shut-off and an overload protection (circuit breaker), giving you a peace of mind during use.
Apart from the typical documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab), which lets you start it right away, the Cat RP5500 also is packed along with the following accessories: tool kit, funnel 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, which makes it suitable for use 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).
- Having a dry weight of 178 lbs, the Cat RP5500 belongs in the expected weight range for generators which produce 5000 to 6000 rated watts. If you are concerned by weight, one of the champions in the above-mentioned power range is the Genmax GM6000XiE, with a dry weight of just 106.9 pounds.
- With a run time of around 15 hours at 50% load, the RP5500 has one of the highest run times, compared to its similarly powerful peers.
- 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. As this generator uses an estimated 0.53 GPH (gallon per hour) at a 50% load, it finds itself in the average gasoline consumption range of similar products. If fuel consumption is your top priority, we suggest to check out the A-iPower SUA7000L, which has a fuel consumption of only 0.36 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||AC (10,000 BTU)||1500||2200|
|Electric fry pan||1500||1500|
|Sump pump (1/2 hp)||1050||2150|
|Refrigerator (energy star)||192||1192|
|Set of 5 LED light bulbs||55||55|
|Total||4397 W||5497 W|
|For camping||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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