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Cat RP5500 (Discontinued)

The Cat RP5500 is a portable open frame generator with a rated wattage of 5,500 W and a starting wattage of 6,875 W. (Read full specs)

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Cat RP5500Cat RP5500Cat RP5500Cat RP5500

This product was discontinued. For your convenience, we decided to leave this page up.
You might still find it second hand on eBay, by clicking on the button below.

Description

THE PERFECT MULTI-USE GENERATOR. This handy generator brings all of the power you need to take care of both play and home needs. Versatile enough to run your motorhome's microwave, fridge, fans, and TV or keep your home's fridge, freezer, washing machine, security system, and water heater working. We've designed our portable generators with your safety in mind. Recessed sockets and water protected covers keep vital connections between your valuable devices and the generator dry. We've also installed ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) that shut off the power if it detects an issue in order to keep you safe. All the vital information you need to operate your portable generator in a single display: voltage in use, frequency (Hz), current runtime in hours and total hours ran.

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
  • Occasional participants of outdoor events, competitions, concerts and festivals
  • Food truck owners who do not wish to see their business interrupted under any circumstances
  • 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, and the extra features it benefits from.

Power & Run Time

The Cat RP5500 in use

The Cat RP5500

The Cat RP5500's design includes a gasoline-fueled 300 cc OHV 4-stroke engine. With a 120/240V output, it gives a running wattage of 5,500W and also a peak wattage of 6,875W.

This generator utilizes a conventional pull-start mechanism for startup.

The RP5500's fuel tank, boasting 7.9 gallons, allows it to operate for around 15 hours at 50% load with a full tank (with an estimated fuel consumption of 0.53 GPH).

Outlets

The control panel provides the upcoming 5 AC outlets:

Two Duplexes 120V 20A (5-20R) GFCI
120/240V 30A (L14-30R) receptacle

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.

Portability

At L32.9 x W27.4 x H24.7 in, the traditional open frame structure of the Cat RP5500 ensures stability while facilitating convenient maintenance access to components and promoting air cooling. The device has been designed for tough environments and demanding outdoor use.

Despite its weight of 178 lbs, the generator is still considered 'portable,' meaning it is movable, although its heftiness may restrict portability in certain environments or require additional considerations for transportation and setup. However, the lack of maneuverability can be offset with its wheel kit and its folding handle, which allows for convenient shifting once the generator is placed on the ground.

Features

Panel of the Cat RP5500

The RP5500's control panel

To facilitate status and activity monitoring, a convenient meter showing you voltage, frequency and lifetime hours are embedded in the control panel of the RP5500. To offer you even more control and easy operation during nighttime, the panel is LED-lit.

The built-in fuel gauge of the generator ensures simple and quick gas level assessments.

As for its security measures, the device features an overload protection (circuit breaker) and an automatic low oil shut-off, letting you use it with a peace of mind.

Apart from the standard documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab) to facilitate setup, the Cat RP5500 features extra accessories: oil, funnel and tool kit. An official storage cover is also available, as a separate purchase.

Product Videos

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).

  • Weighing in at 178 lbs, the Cat RP5500 fits within the expected weight range for devices producing 5000 to 6000 rated watts. If weight is an important consideration for you, the Champion 201238 stands out as one of the top contenders in this power category, with a dry weight of 101.4 pounds.
  • Since the RP5500 boasts with a run time of around 15 hours at 50% load, it can be safely judged as one of the devices with the highest run time among those of a comparable 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. The generator burns fuel at a rate of around 0.53 GPH when running at a 50% load, which is consistent with the average fuel usage of models of comparable power output. If you're placing a high priority on fuel consumption, the A-iPower SUA7000L, with a low fuel consumption rate of 0.36 GPH, could be an option to consider.

The bottom line

STRENGTHS:
  • Illuminated control panel
  • Several accessories included
  • GFCI Outlets
  • High run time
AVERAGE SPECS:
  • Decent weight (178 lbs)
  • Decent fuel efficiency
WEAKNESSES:
  • No electric start

Do you own the Cat RP5500 and agree (or disagree) with these strengths and weaknesses?

Let us know and write your own review.

Features and Specifications

General
InverterNo
Parallel capableNo
RV readyNo
FuelGasoline
Engine300 cc OHV 4-stroke
Starting systemRecoil
Warranty2 years
Power
VoltageAC: 120/240V 60 Hz
Running watts5,500 W
Starting watts6,875 W
Running amps (@120/240V)45.8/22.9 amps
Peak amps (@120/240V)57.3/28.6 amps
Run time @50% load15 h
Run time @25% loadUnknown
Features
GFCI outletsYes
Covered outletsYes
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes
AC outlets
  • 2x Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R) GFCI
  • 1x 120/240V 30A (L14-30R)
DC outletsNo
Data centerVFT
IndicatorsNo
Fuel tankMetal, 7.9 gal
Fuel gaugeYes
Misc
Weight178 lbs
Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)32.9 x 27.4 x 24.7 in
Noise (lower limit)Unknown
THDUnknown
ComplianceCARB, EPA
SecurityLow oil and overload protection
Spark arrestorYes
NeutralBonded to frame
Accessories includedOil, funnel, tool kit, and wheel kit
Other model numbers502-3686
UPC815683020036

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.

Spec Improvement×

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About Cat

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 were engineered and designed in Mossville, Illinois, and Belfast, Northern Ireland. However, their production was outsourced to China.

Warranty Information

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?
Examples of items that can be simultaneously powered.
The examples below are based on a maximum load of 80% and estimated wattages. For a more accurate estimation, use our generator sizer.
ItemRunning WattsStarting Watts
At homeMicrowave (1000 watts)15001500
Dish washer15003000
Sump pump (1/2 hp)10502150
Refrigerator (energy star)1921192
Radio100100
Set of 5 LED light bulbs5555
Total4397 W5897 W
For campingRV AC (11,000 BTU)10101600
RV refrigerator180600
Hair dryer18001900
Radiant heater13001300
Radio100100
Total4390 W4980 W
For workTable saw18004500
Grinder14002500
Reciprocating saw730960
Bug zapper8080
Total4010 W6710 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)

The unit is not waterproof and should not be operated in the rain. We recommend reading our articles on generator operation in bad weather and generator safety.

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