Get this unit while stocks last, because Caterpillar discontinued its production.
Zoom on the Cat RP5500
In summary, the Cat RP5500 is a portable generator especially useful for:
- RV travellers who wish to upgrade their experience to another level
- People occasionally participating in outdoor fairs, festivals or events
- 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 be able to deliver results, even during a power failure
The following sections will present you in detail its power characteristics, the different outlets it offers, its overall portability, the extra features it benefits from, and any relevant emission compliance details.
Power & Run Time
The Cat RP5500's engine, 300 cc OHV 4-stroke, fueled by gasoline, can deliver 120/240V. It provides a running wattage of 5500W and reaches a peak wattage of 6875W.
Its starting mechanism is based on a conventional pull-start mechanism.
The RP5500 can operate for around 15 hours at 50% load with a full tank (fuel consumption around 0.53 GPH), due to its fuel capacity of 7.9 gallons.
The control panel provides the upcoming 5 AC outlets:
As it features a twist-lock L14-30R receptacle, the RP5500 is transfer switch ready: in case of a power outage, you will be easily able to connect it to a breaker box and power your household.
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 featured design is ideal for the outdoors and all tough environments.
Although this generator is technically considered 'portable' (in the sense that it can be moved), its 178 lbs make it incredibly difficult to manually lift and transport. 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 status and activity may be monitored conveniently via the control panel, as it features a convenient meter showing you voltage, frequency and lifetime hours. To offer you even more control and easy operation during night time, the panel is LED-lit.
Thanks to a built-in fuel gauge, the generator allows you to quickly, conveniently and easily check the gas level at a glance.
Security-wise, this product benefits from an overload protection (circuit breaker) and an automatic low oil shut-off, which gives you a complete peace of mind when using it.
While the standard documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab), helpful for starting the device promptly, come with the Cat RP5500, the following accessories are also included: oil, funnel and tool kit. An official storage cover is also available, as a separate purchase.
The Cat RP5500 is EPA-approved and CARB-compliant. Therefore, its sale and purchase are permitted in all 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. Regarding dry weight, one of the champions in the same power range is the WEN GN6000, with a dry weight of only 119 lbs.
- As the RP5500 features an autonomy of around 15 hours at 50% load, it has one of the highest run times in comparison to the other generators of its power range.
- Autonomy holds its importance, however, it is largely dependent on the generator’s fuel capacity and so, it is nonsensible to discuss it without mentioning fuel efficiency as well. This generator reaches an estimated fuel consumption of 0.53 GPH (gallon per hour) at a 50% load, making it average, for the previously mentioned wattage range. 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 average side of the price range.
Therefore, this generator nicely fits in the expected budget for this kind of product.
The bottom line
- In the expected price range
- 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)
Couldn't find the right answer for you? Ask your own question.