Zoom on the Cummins Onan P4500i
In summary, the Cummins Onan P4500i is a quiet and compact portable inverter generator especially useful for:
- RV travellers looking for even more independence
- Occasional participants of outdoor events, competitions, concerts and festivals
- Homeowners in need of an emergency backup power for their essentials
- Tailgating and campground aficionados with the desire of enjoying power anywhere they go
Power & Run Time
The Cummins Onan P4500i's core is the 224 cc (7.3 hp) Ducar OHV 4-stroke engine, which runs on gasoline. With an output of 120V, it provides a running wattage of 3,700W and a peak wattage of 4,500W. Additionally, as the generator is parallel capable (A058M290 parallel kit (opens in a new tab) not included), it can be linked to a second unit for more power.
Enjoying a noise rating of 52 dBA (just slightly more noisy than rainfall), this inverter generator can be started thanks to a simple traditional pull-start mechanism, but also to a simple and elegant electric starter (battery included). For additional convenience, the Onan P4500i may also be remotely started (key fob included).
With a fuel capacity of 3.4 gallons, the Onan P4500i may run for up to 18 hours with a full tank (fuel consumption around 0.19 GPH).
The Onan P4500i generates a clean sine wave: providing <3% Total Harmonic Distortion (THD), delicate electronics can be plugged in its AC outlets safely.
The control panel features the following 3 AC outlets:
Additionally, it features 2 DC outlets: there's two 5V USB ports with which you may charge electronics, for example mobile phones or tablets, conveniently.
This Cummins generator is RV Ready, as it features a TT-30R receptacle (TT stands for 'Travel Trailer').
The Cummins Onan P4500i is an inverter generator and has an encased design of the following dimensions: L24.5 x W18.3 x H20.5 in. Thus, it is more aesthetical than conventional, open frame products. This type of design is the most modern and convenient way to recreationally generate power.
The Onan P4500i can be taken anywhere with you, thanks to its weight of 98 lbs. Moreover, its set of 2 wheels (⌀5.5") and its telecospic handle will allow you to effortlessly shift it once it's on the ground.
A digital data center, one of the features of the Onan P4500i's control panel, gives you information on the lifetime run hours, voltage, power output, remaining run time and fuel level, and thus, is helpful for the monitoring of its activity and status.
In addition to this info, several light indicators serve to show you when the generator is on overload, the generator is ready and its oil levels are insufficient.
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.
While the standard documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab), helpful for starting the device promptly, come with the Cummins Onan P4500i, the following accessories are also included: battery charger, tool kit, funnel, oil and key fob. A storage cover is also available, as a separate purchase.
The Cummins Onan P4500i 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 and therefore, can be used in forested areas.
The Cummins Onan P4500i versus other generators
The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the Cummins Onan P4500i compare to inverter generators of similar power (between 3500 and 4500 W).
- Having a dry weight of 98 lbs, the Cummins Onan P4500i belongs in the expected weight range for inverter generators which produce 3500 to 4500 rated watts. In terms of weight, one of the champions in their power range is the Genmax GM4600iAEFIC, standing at just 58.4 lbs.
- At a lowest noise rating of 52 dBA, this inverter generator is one of the most quiet devices of similar type and power.
- Offering up to 18 hours of running time on a full tank at 25% load, the Onan P4500i is within the average autonomy range of similarly powerful inverter generators. If concerned with autonomy, one of the products of a comparable power output, which offers the highest run time, is the Firman W03661OF, boasting with up to 25 hours.
- 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 inverter generator has an average fuel consumption among comparably powerful devices, as it reaches 0.19 GPH (gallon per hour) at a 25% load. If fuel consumption is your top priority, we suggest to check out the Champion 200988, which has a fuel consumption of only 0.16 GPH and thus, is one of the most efficient devices in our database.
Here's a list of the most popular specific comparisons:
As you can see from these interactive charts, when compared to other 3500-4500W inverter generators, the Cummins Onan P4500i 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
- RV Ready
- Remote start
- Parallel capable
- Quiet for its power (52 dBA)
- Decent weight (98 lbs)
- Decent run time
- Decent fuel efficiency
The Cummins Onan P4500i doesn't have any notably low specs.
Features and Specifications
|Yes, cable not included
|224 cc Ducar OHV 4-stroke
|Recoil, Electric, Remote
|AC: 120V 60 Hz, DC: 5V
|Run time @50% load
|Run time @25% load
|Automatic Voltage Regulation
|2x 5V USB port
|Power output, fuel level, lifetime run hours, remaining run time and voltage
|Low oil, overload and output ready
|Steel, 3.4 gal
|Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)
|24.5 x 18.3 x 20.5 in
|Noise (lower limit)
|Low oil and overload protection
|Oil, funnel, tool kit, key fob, battery charger, and battery
|Other model numbers
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.
Cummins is a NYSE publicly traded, Fortune 500 corporation dealing in the power sector and heavy industry. Founded in 1919 in Columbus, IN, by William Glanton Irwin and Clessie Cummings, Cummins focused on the development of diesel engines. However, the company truly came to bloom only after the WWII, with the nationwide road expansion and went finally global in the 1960s, with its heavy-duty trucks. Cummins has, over the years, offered a wide variety of power solutions, from actual power plants to RV generators. Yet, the company has only recently dipped its foot into the portable generator market. The company currently offers a small selection of both conventional and inverter generators under the Onan product line, formerly the Cummins Onan brand.
The Cummins Onan P4500i 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 Cummins generators, please contact the Cummins Customer Support: 1-800-CUMMINS (800-286-6467).
Questions & Answers
What can it power?
|Refrigerator (energy star)
|Set of 5 LED light bulbs
|RV AC (11,000 BTU)
|Set of 5 LED light bulbs
|Electric fence (25 miles)
At what elevation can you use this generator? (Asked August 08, 2020)
Up to 2000 feet without rejetting the carburetor.
Does this generator need to be covered if it rains. (Asked August 11, 2020)
Any portable generator has to be covered. Please refer to our article on rain and snow operation.
can this generator hook up to a manual generator transfer switch wired to a house panel (Asked October 20, 2020)
While it could technically be feasible with the help of a licensed electrician, we do not recommend it. This unit only produces 120V and is not designed for such a permanent connection.
Where is the P4500i Onan generator manufactured. I ask this, because I have had one on order for 3 months now. Is it coming out of China? (Asked November 04, 2020)
The P4500i is manufactured in Asia to Cummins' standards. It is currently on backorder pretty much everywhere.
Does remote control also turn it off? (Asked December 06, 2020)
The unit can be remotely started and stopped.
Will the generator run at 5,000 feet? I go in hi elevations sometimes (Asked March 25, 2021)
You will probably have to rejet it/use an altitude kit. We recommend reading our article on operation in high altitudes.
Who is the manufacturer of the engine used in the P4500i, I was told its Briggs and Stanton. (Asked April 14, 2021)
The engine is manufactured by Ducar.
Where is the serial number located. (Asked April 26, 2021)
Does this generator have a CO sensor and shut-off if unsafe levels are detected? (Asked June 08, 2021)
The current version of the P4500i does not feature a CO sensor. You may have a look at our list of units with a CO sensor.
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