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 who want to be able to use the most necessary devices in their household, even during a blackout
- Tailgating and campground aficionados with the desire of enjoying power anywhere they go
Power & Run Time
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. In addition, the device is parallel capable (A058M290 parallel kit (opens in a new tab) not included) and thus, can be linked to a similar or compatible unit for added power.
The inverter generator features a simple traditional pull-start mechanism and also a convenient and easy-to-use electric starter (battery included). It is rated for a noise of 52 dBA (just slightly more noisy than a quiet suburb). To add further convenience, the Onan P4500i can be remotely started (key fob included).
The fuel capacity of 3.4 gallons allows the Onan P4500i to operate for up to 18 hours with a full tank (fuel consumption around 0.19 GPH).
Sensitive electronics can be safely plugged in the AC outlets, as the Onan P4500i produces a clean sine wave, with a <3% Total Harmonic Disruption (THD).
The control panel provides the upcoming 3 AC outlets:
It also sports 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.
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 featured design follows the latest trends and is ideal for easy and recreational use.
The 98 lbs of the Onan P4500i's dry weight enables you to use it anywhere you will ever need. 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.
The control panel of the Onan P4500i includes a digital data center, which assists you in monitoring its status and activity, as it provides information on the remaining run time, power output, lifetime run hours, fuel level and voltage.
In addition to this info, several light indicators serve to show you when the generator is on overload, its oil levels are insufficient and the generator is ready.
As for its security measures, the device features an automatic low oil shut-off and an overload protection (circuit breaker), letting you use it with a peace of mind.
Besides the classic documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab) to get you promptly started, the Cummins Onan P4500i also comes with some accessories: battery charger, funnel, oil, tool kit and key fob are included. A storage cover is also available, as a separate purchase.
The Cummins Onan P4500i 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 and thus, may 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 generators of similar power (between 3500 and 4500 W).
- In terms of its dry weight, the Cummins Onan P4500i stands at only 98 lbs, meaning that is one of the lighter devices of the 3500-4500 rated wattage category 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.
- With a lowest possible noise of 52 dBA, this inverter generator places itself amongst the most quiet of the products delivering similar power.
- Given that the Onan P4500i reaches an autonomy of up to 18 hours with a full tank and at 25% load, it is placed within the average autonomy range of similarly powerful generators. If autonomy is your priority, one of the devices of a similar power output with the highest run time is the Champion 200954, reaching 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 has an estimated fuel consumption of roughly 0.19 GPH (gallon per hour) at a 25% load, rendering it somewhat average compared to devices of a similar output. 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.
Here's a list of the most popular specific comparisons:
As you can see from this interactive chart, when compared to other 3500-4500W 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
- Lightweight for its kind (98 lbs)
- Quiet for its power (52 dBA)
- Decent run time
- Decent fuel efficiency
The Cummins Onan P4500i doesn't have any notably low specs.
Features and Specifications
|Parallel capable||Yes, cable not included|
|Engine||224 cc Ducar OHV 4-stroke|
|Starting system||Recoil, Electric, Remote|
|Voltage||AC: 120V 60 Hz, DC: 5V|
|Running watts||3700 W|
|Starting watts||4500 W|
|Running amps||30.8 amps|
|Peak amps||37.5 amps|
|Run time @50% load||15 h|
|Run time @25% load||18 h|
|Automatic Voltage Regulation||Inverter|
|AC outlets|| |
|DC outlets||2x 5V USB port|
|Data center||Power output, fuel level, lifetime run hours, remaining run time and voltage|
|Indicators||Low oil, overload and output ready|
|Fuel tank||Steel, 3.4 gal|
|Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)||24.5 x 18.3 x 20.5 in|
|Noise (lower limit)||52 dBA|
|Security||Low oil and overload protection|
|Accessories included||Oil, funnel, tool kit, key fob, battery charger, and battery|
|Other model numbers||A058U955|
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?
|Item||Running Watts||Starting Watts|
|At home||Refrigerator (energy star)||192||1192|
|Set of 5 LED light bulbs||55||55|
|Total||2947 W||3947 W|
|For camping||Radiant heater||1300||1300|
|RV AC (11,000 BTU)||1010||1600|
|Set of 5 LED light bulbs||55||55|
|Total||2945 W||3535 W|
|Total||2910 W||4010 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.
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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