Zoom on the Cat RP6500 E
In a nutshell, the Cat RP6500 E is a portable generator mostly geared towards:
- Food van owners who know that just a short power outage could lose them hundreds of dollars
- Homeowners in need of an emergency backup power for their essentials
- Professionals in need of safely powering high-intensity work or lighting equipment
In the sections ahead, the power characteristics, availability of various outlets, the portability, and any additional features of the device shall be discussed, including its emission compliance information.
Power & Run Time
The Cat RP6500 E is powered by a 420 cc OHV 4-stroke engine. It delivers 120/240V, runs on gasoline and offers a running wattage of 6500W as well as a peak wattage of 8125W.
This generator can be started thanks to a conventional pull-start mechanism, but also to a convenient and easy-to-use electric starter (battery included).
With a fuel capacity of 7.9 gallons, the RP6500 E may run for around 12 hours at 50% load with a full tank (fuel consumption around 0.66 GPH).
The control panel includes the following 6 AC outlets:
This Cat generator isn't quite RV Ready, but it features an L5-30R receptacle, allowing a simple RV connection through an L5-30P to TT-30R adaptor. Besides, since the RP6500 E 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.
The Cat RP6500 E 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.
As the generator's weight is 202 pounds, manually moving it or transporting it may be challenging, despite the fact that it is technically considered 'portable' (movable). However, this lack of maneuverability is compensated by its wheel kit and its folding handle, with which you can conveniently shift it, once it's on the ground.
To help you monitor the RP6500 E's status and activity, its control panel is equipped with 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 generator allows for a quick, easy and convenient assessment of its gas level, as it is equipped with a built-in fuel gauge.
From a security point of view, the generator is equipped with an overload protection (circuit breaker) and an automatic low oil shut-off, giving you a peace of mind during use.
Along the basic documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab), useful for starting the generator right away, the Cat RP6500 E's package also includes these accessories: funnel, tool kit and oil.
The Cat RP6500 E 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 RP6500 E versus other generators
The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the Cat RP6500 E compare to generators of similar power (between 6000 and 7000 W).
- With a dry weight of 202 pounds, the Cat RP6500 E finds itself in the expected weight range for generators able to produce between 6000 and 7000 rated watts. If weight matters to you, one of the champions in this power range is the Sportsman GEN85KIDF with only 133 pounds.
- As the RP6500 E features an autonomy of around 12 hours at 50% load, it has a higher run time than an average generator of its power range. If concerned with autonomy, one of the products of a comparable power output, which offers the highest run time, is the Generac XC6500, boasting with around 14 hours.
- 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. Standing at an estimated 0.66 GPH (gallon per hour) at a 50% load, this generator is somewhat average in this area compared to other devices, within the aforementioned wattage range. If fuel consumption is your top priority, we suggest to check out the Lifan ESI 7000iER-EFI, which has a fuel consumption of only 0.38 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 6000-7000W generators, the Cat RP6500 E 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
- Several accessories included
- GFCI Outlets
- Electric start
- High run time
- Decent weight (202 lbs)
- Decent fuel efficiency
- No remote start
Features and Specifications
|Engine||420 cc OHV 4-stroke|
|Starting system||Recoil, Electric|
|Voltage||AC: 120/240V 60 Hz|
|Running watts||6500 W|
|Starting watts||8125 W|
|Running amps (@120/240V)||54.2/27.1 amps|
|Peaks amps (@120/240V)||67.7/33.9 amps|
|Run time @50% load||12 h|
|Run time @25% load||N/A|
|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 battery|
|Other model numbers||502-3688|
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. A majority of the industrial-scale CAT products is made in the USA. However, the production of many of their household products is reported to be outsourced overseas.
The Cat RP6500 E 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|
|Set of 5 LED light bulbs||55||55|
|Total||5172 W||6647 W|
|For camping||Radiant heater||1300||1300|
|Total||5180 W||5600 W|
|For work||Table saw||1800||4500|
|Air compressor (1 hp)||1600||6100|
|Total||3480 W||7980 W|
Can this generator run your home a/c and other small appliances at the same time? (Asked June 09, 2020)
Considering that it is recommended to not exceed an 80% load, this unit can run for 5200W (6500*0.8) worth of appliances at the same time. While this should normally be plenty for what you mentioned, you'd need to know the actual wattage needs of your own a/c and appliances. Feel free to use our wattage calculator to help you assess your power needs, as it allows you to add custom appliances.
Couldn't find the right answer for you? Ask your own question.