Cummins Onan P4500i Spec Review

The Cummins Onan P4500i is a quiet and compact portable inverter generator with a rated wattage of 3700 W and a starting wattage of 4500 W.

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Picture of the Cummins Onan P4500i
Note: This unit is a rebranded version of the Westinghouse iGen4500.

Description

Zoom on the Cummins Onan P4500i

In a nutshell, the Cummins Onan P4500i is a quiet and compact portable inverter generator mostly geared towards:

  • 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
  • Camping and tailgating hobbyists looking for a portable power source

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 Cummins Onan P4500i in use

The Cummins Onan P4500i

The Cummins Onan P4500i houses a 224 cc (7.3 hp) Ducar OHV 4-stroke engine, which provides 120V, consumes gasoline and delivers a running wattage of 3700W along with a peak wattage of 4500W. 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.

The inverter generator is rated for a noise of 52 dBA (just slightly more noisy than rainfall). Its starting mechanisms include a simple traditional pull-start mechanism and a simple and elegant electric starter (battery included). To add further convenience, the Onan P4500i can be remotely started (key fob included).

Thanks to a fuel capacity of 3.4 gallons, the Onan P4500i can operate for up to 18 hours with a full tank (fuel consumption around 0.19 GPH).

The Onan P4500i 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

Furthermore, it has 2 DC outlets: there's two 5V USB ports with which charging of electronics like mobile phones and tablets is made convenient.

Thanks to its TT-30R receptacle (TT stands for 'Travel Trailer'), this Cummins generator is RV Ready.

Portability

Thanks to its closed inverter generator design (L24.5 x W18.3 x H20.5 in), the Cummins Onan P4500i, is more esthetical than a typical, open frame generator. The generator has a contemporary design, convenient for recreationally generating power.

The Onan P4500i's dry weight of 98 lbs lets you use its power anywhere needed. Furthermore, once placed on the floor, effortless displacement is possible thanks to its wheel kit (⌀5.5") and its telecospic handle.

Features

Panel of the Cummins Onan P4500i

The Onan P4500i's control panel

A digital data center, one of the features of the Onan P4500i’s control panel, gives you information on the remaining run time, fuel level, lifetime run hours, voltage and power output, 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 ready, the generator is overloaded and the oil level is too low.

As far as security is concerned, the generator can be used with a peace of mind, as it features an automatic low oil shut-off and an overload protection (circuit breaker).

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: funnel, tool kit, oil, battery charger and key fob.

Emissions

The Cummins Onan P4500i 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, making it usable in forested areas.

Product Video

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 generators of similar power (between 3500 and 4500 W).

  • As far as its dry weight is concerned, the Cummins Onan P4500i weighs just 98 pounds and thus, it is one of the lighter 3500 to 4500 rated wattage generators. If weight matters to you, one of the champions in this power range is the WEN GN400i with only 66.1 pounds.
  • With a lowest noise rating of 52 dBA, the inverter generator is one of the most quiet of the generators of similar power.
  • Since the Onan P4500i boasts with a run time of up to 18 hours at 25% load, it can be safely judged as one of the devices with the highest run time among those of a comparable output.
  • 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. With an estimated gasoline consumption of 0.19 GPH (gallon per hour) at 25% load, this inverter generator is among the more fuel efficient of the products in the above-mentioned wattage range. 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.
According to our stats, the following comparison is pretty popular: Cummins Onan P4500i vs Westinghouse iGen4500.

The bottom line

STRENGTHS:
  • Several accessories included
  • RV Ready
  • Remote start
  • Parallel capable
  • Inverter
  • Lightweight for its kind (98 lbs)
  • Quiet for its power (52 dBA)
  • High run time
  • Fuel efficient
WEAKNESSES:

The Cummins Onan P4500i doesn't have any notably low specs.

Do you own the Cummins Onan P4500i 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
FuelGasoline
Engine224 cc Ducar OHV 4-stroke
Starting systemRecoil, Electric, Remote
Power
VoltageAC: 120V 60 Hz, DC: 5V
Running watts3700 W
Starting watts4500 W
Running amps30.8 amps
Peaks amps37.5 amps
Run time @50% load15 h
Run time @25% load18 h
Features
GFCI outletsNo
Covered outletsYes
Automatic Voltage RegulationInverter
AC outlets
  • 1x Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R)
  • 1x 120V 30A (TT-30R)
DC outlets2x 5V USB port
Data centerPower output, fuel level, lifetime run hours, remaining run time and voltage
IndicatorsLow oil, overload and output ready
Fuel tankSteel, 3.4 gal
Fuel gaugeDigital
Misc
Weight98 lbs
Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)24.5 x 18.3 x 20.5 in
Noise (lower limit)52 dBA
THD< 3%
EmissionsCARB, EPA
SecurityLow oil and overload protection
Spark arrestorYes
NeutralFloating
Accessories includedOil, funnel, tool kit, key fob, battery charger and battery
Warranty3 years
Other model numbersA058U955

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.

About Cummins

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.

Warranty Information

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?
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 size calculator.
ItemRunning WattsStarting Watts
At homeElectric fry pan15001500
Refrigerator (energy star)1921192
Vacuum cleaner10751175
Security system180180
Total2947 W3947 W
For campingRV AC (11,000 BTU)10101600
RV refrigerator180600
Electric grill16501650
Radio100100
Total2940 W3530 W
For workGrinder14002500
Demolition hammer12601260
Drain cleaner250250
Total2910 W4010 W
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.

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