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Champion 200978 Spec Review

The Champion 200978 is a compact open frame dual fuel inverter generator with a rated wattage of 3650 W and a starting wattage of 4500 W.

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Description

Zoom on the Champion 200978

In summary, the Champion 200978 is a compact portable inverter generator especially useful for:

  • RV travellers wishing to enhance their freedom and nomad lifestyle
  • People occasionally participating in sporting competitions, open-air performances and outdoor festivals
  • Homeowners in need of an emergency backup power for their essentials
  • Camping and tailgating buffs looking to enhance their experience

In the following paragraphs, we shall explore the power characteristics, available outlets, portability, and any additional features of the device, along with its emission compliance information.

Power & Run Time

The Champion 200978 in use

The Champion 200978

The dual-fuel technology of the Champion 200978 allows for an output of 120V and provides superb power and versatility. If gasoline-powered, the device provides a running wattage of 3650W and a starting wattage of 4500W. If propane-powered, it gives 3285 rated watts and 4500 starting watts. In addition, the device is parallel capable (ParaLink (opens in a new tab) not included) and thus, can be linked to a similar or compatible unit for added power.

With a noise rating of 64 dBA (just slightly more noisy than background music), the inverter generator features a conventional pull-start mechanism. Champion’s EZ Start Dial lets you intuitively start the engine with easy access to all the controls you need.

Regarding its running time, the 200978, with a 2.9 gallons fuel capacity can operate for up to 17 hours with a full tank of gasoline (fuel consumption around 0.17 GPH). When using propane, it can run for up to 21 hours (on a 20 lbs tank - propane consumption around 0.22 GPH).

The 200978 produces a clean sine wave: thanks to a <3% Total Harmonic Disruption (THD), your sensitive electronics can be safely plugged in the AC outlets.

Outlets

The control panel features the upcoming 3 AC outlets:

Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R)
120V 30A (TT-30R) receptacle

It also sports 1 DC outlet: there's a 12V 8A (cigarette lighter style) receptacle with which you may charge your batteries with ease.

This Champion generator is RV Ready, thanks to its TT-30R receptacle (TT stands for 'Travel Trailer').

Portability

With its dimensions of L20.9 x W18.3 x H19.4 in, the conventional, open frame design of the Champion 200978 offers stability and allows the generator to be raised above ground level. The design is ideal for rough environments and demanding outdoor use.

As the 200978's weight is only 75 lbs, it can follow you and your power needs anywhere. Moreover, grabbing and moving this product is made even easier by its open frame design.

If you wish to transport the 200978 more easily, you may also consider purchasing the official wheel kit (opens in a new tab).

Features

Panel of the Champion 200978

The 200978's control panel

Monitoring of the 200978's status and activity is made possible by a digital Intelligauge data center, which provides information on the lifetime run hours, power output, frequency and voltage and is one of the features of its control panel.

In addition to this info, a light indicator serves to show you when its oil levels are insufficient.

The inverter generator allows for a quick, easy and convenient assessment of its gas level, as it is equipped with a built-in fuel gauge.

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.

The unit also benefits from the CO Shield™ technology, which monitors accumulation of poisonous carbon monoxide (CO) gas produced by the engine's exhaust when the generator is running. If CO Shield™ detects elevated levels of CO gas, it automatically shuts off the engine and illuminates a red LED. It’s a welcomed additional security feature, but don’t forget to always take your generator outside (opens in a new tab).

With the basic documentation and an owner's manual, letting you start the generator quickly, the Champion 200978 also comes with several accessories, including: tool kit, funnel, dual port USB adapter, propane hose and oil.

Emissions

The Champion 200978 is EPA-approved and CARB-compliant. It can therefore be sold and purchased in all 50 states, including California.

Moreover, it features a spark arrestor, making it usable in forested areas.

The Champion 200978 versus other generators

The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the Champion 200978 compare to generators of similar power (between 3500 and 4500 W).

  • As far as its dry weight is concerned, the Champion 200978 weighs just 75 pounds and thus, it is one of the lighter 3500 to 4500 rated wattage generators. Regarding dry weight, one of the champions in the same power range is the WEN GN400i, with a dry weight of only 66.1 lbs.
  • Because this inverter generator emits noise as low as 64 dBA, it can be considered to have a pretty average expected noise rating for a device of its power. If noise emissions are important to you, one of the least noisy generators of this power range is the Cummins Onan P4500i with only 52 dBA.
  • Offering up to 17 hours of running time on a full tank at 25% load, the 200978 is within the average autonomy range of similarly powerful generators. Concerning the run times, one of the several devices with a comparable output, offering the highest autonomy, is the Champion 200954, which is able to run for up to 22 hours.
  • Run times are important, yet thanks to their dependence on the fuel capacity, they should be judged along with the fuel consumption of the device. This inverter generator is one of the more fuel efficient models of the aforementioned output range, as its estimated fuel consumption reaches just 0.17 GPH (gallon per hour) at 25% load. If you wish to further improve in the area of fuel efficiency, the Westinghouse iGen4200, which boasts with a gas consumption of only 0.14 GPH, may be the right generator for you.

Price comparison

As you can see from this interactive chart, when compared to other 3500-4500W generators, the Champion 200978 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

STRENGTHS:
  • In the expected price range
  • CO Shield™ technology
  • Several accessories included
  • RV Ready
  • Parallel capable
  • Dual Fuel
  • Inverter
  • Lightweight for its kind (75 lbs)
  • Fuel efficient
AVERAGE SPECS:
  • Acceptable noise (64 dBA)
  • Decent run time
WEAKNESSES:
  • No electric start

Do you own the Champion 200978 and agree (or disagree) with these strengths and weaknesses?

Let us know and write your own review.

Features and Specifications

General
InverterYes
PortableYes
Parallel capableYes, cable not included
RV readyYes
FuelDual Fuel (gasoline/propane)
Engine224 cc OHV 4-stroke
Starting systemRecoil
VoltageAC: 120V 60 Hz, DC: 12V
Power
 GasolinePropane
Running watts3650 W3285 W
Starting watts4500 W4500 W
Running amps30.4 amps27.4 amps
Peak amps37.5 amps37.5 amps
Run time @50% loadUnknownUnknown
Run time @25% load17 h21 h
Features
GFCI outletsNo
Covered outletsYes
Automatic Voltage RegulationInverter
AC outlets
  • 1x Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R)
  • 1x 120V 30A (TT-30R)
DC outlets1x 12V 8A (cigarette lighter style)
Data centerPower output, lifetime run hours, voltage and frequency
IndicatorsLow oil
Fuel tank2.9 gal
Fuel gaugeYes
Misc
Weight75 lbs
Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)20.9 x 18.3 x 19.4 in
Noise (lower limit)64 dBA
THD< 3%
EmissionsCARB, EPA
SecurityLow oil and overload protection, CO monitoring
Spark arrestorYes
NeutralFloating
Accessories includedOil, funnel, tool kit, propane hose, and dual port USB adapter
Warranty3 years

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.

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About Champion Power Equipment

Founded in 2003, the Champion Power Equipment is a US based power equipment manufacturer. The relatively small company has made a name for itself both in the portable generator industry, but also the power equipment sector in general, with a particular focus on heavy duty equipment, such as log cutters, snow blowers, chipper shredders, etc. All of their products are engineered in the US. However, the company does not provide information on the origin of their components.

Warranty Information

The Champion 200978 is covered under a warranty for up to 3 years. This warranty may be limited and may not cover all parts of the generator.
For more information about the warranty of Champion generators, please consult Champion's warranty policies (opens in a new tab). Alternatively, you can also contact their Customer Support: 1-877-338-0999.

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 homeElectric fry pan15001500
Refrigerator (energy star)1921192
Vacuum cleaner10751175
Laptop150150
Total2917 W3917 W
For campingRV AC (11,000 BTU)10101600
RV refrigerator180600
Electric grill16501650
Set of 5 LED light bulbs5555
Cell phone charger2020
Total2915 W3505 W
For workGrinder14002500
Demolition hammer12601260
Electric fence (25 miles)250250
Total2910 W4010 W

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