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Generac GP5500 Spec Review

Picture 1 of the Generac GP5500
Picture 2 of the Generac GP5500
Picture 3 of the Generac GP5500
Picture 4 of the Generac GP5500

The Generac GP5500 (5939) is an open frame portable generator with a rated wattage of 5500 W and a starting wattage of 6875 W.

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Description

The GP5500 has enough power for emergency use, when you’re not using it for outdoor recreation and DIY projects. (source: Generac)

Zoom on the Generac GP5500

In summary, the Generac GP5500 is a portable generator especially useful for:

  • RV travellers looking for even more independence
  • Homeowners who want to be sure of their ability to power their fridges, cooking tools, heating and lighting equipment during power failures

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 Generac GP5500 in use

The Generac GP5500

The Generac GP5500's build contains a gasoline-fueled 389 cc Generac OHV 4-stroke engine. With a 120/240V output, it gives a running wattage of 5500W and also a peak wattage of 6875W.

The generator features a simple traditional pull-start mechanism.

Thanks to a fuel capacity of 7.2 gallons, the GP5500 can operate for around 10 hours at 50% load with a full tank (fuel consumption around 0.72 GPH).

As the GP5500 has a relatively high THD (<20%), it is not recommended to use it to power sensitive electronic devices.

Outlets

The control panel provides the upcoming 5 AC outlets:

Two Duplexes 120V 20A (5-20R)
120/240V 30A (L14-30R) receptacle

Because the GP5500 is equipped with a twist-lock L14-30R receptacle, it is transfer switch ready: it can power your home during a power outage, as it can be easily connected to your breaker box to power your household.

Portability

The Generac GP5500 has a conventional, open frame design, of the following dimensions: L27.5 x W27 x H25 in, which offers support and allows it to be raised above ground level. The device has been designed for tough environments and demanding outdoor use.

Although this generator is technically considered 'portable' (in the sense that it can be moved), its 170.9 lbs make it incredibly difficult to manually lift and transport. However, this lack of maneuverability is compensated by a wheel kit (⌀9.5") and a folding handle, with which you can conveniently displace it, once it's on the ground.

Features

Panel of the Generac GP5500

The GP5500's control panel

One of the many GP5500's features is the data center, included in its control panel, which conveniently provides information on the lifetime run hours and thus, helps you monitor its activity and status.

The fuel level of the generator can be determined quickly, easily, and conveniently with the help of its 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.

Besides the usual set of documentation and user manual to get you promptly started, Generac also included some oil in the GP5500's packaging.

Emissions

The Generac GP5500 is EPA approved, but NOT CARB-compliant. Thus, it cannot be purchased or sold in California.

Moreover, it features a spark arrestor, which makes it suitable for use in forested areas.

Product Video

Video of the Generac GP5500

The Generac GP5500 versus other generators

The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the Generac GP5500 compare to generators of similar power (between 5000 and 6000 W).

  • As for its weight, the Generac GP5500 weighs only 170.9 pounds, making it one of the lighter generators in the 5000-6000 rated wattage category. Regarding dry weight, one of the champions in the same power range is the Champion 100519, with a dry weight of only 121 lbs.
  • The GP5500’s autonomy is somewhat low end compared to devices of its power range, as it reaches only around 10 hours at 50% load on a full tank. Concerning the run times, one of the several devices with a comparable output, offering the highest autonomy, is the Cat RP5500, which is able to run for around 15 hours.
  • The run time is important, but also hugely depends on the capacity of the fuel tank and doesn't mean much if we don't talk about fuel consumption as well. This generator is not fuel efficient compared to devices of similar output: its estimated fuel consumption stands at 0.72 GPH at a 50% load. If you wish to acquire one of the most gasoline efficient products of this power range, the Westinghouse WGen5500, with a fuel consumption of 0.44 GPH could be in your good books.
According to our stats, the following comparison is pretty popular: Generac GP5500 vs Generac GP6500.

Price comparison

As you can see from this dynamic chart, when compared to other 5000-6000W generators, the Generac GP5500 is on the cheap side of the price range.

It can therefore be a really good buy if you're looking to acquire a budget generator.

The bottom line

STRENGTHS:
  • Inexpensive
  • Lightweight for its kind (170.9 lbs)
WEAKNESSES:
  • No electric start
  • Not CARB-compliant
  • Relatively low run time
  • Low fuel efficiency

Do you own the Generac GP5500 and agree (or disagree) with these strengths and weaknesses?

Let us know and write your own review.

Features and Specifications

General

InverterNo
PortableYes
Parallel capableNo
RV readyNo
FuelGasoline
Engine389 cc Generac OHV 4-stroke
Starting systemRecoil

Power

VoltageAC: 120/240V 60 Hz
Running watts5500 W
Starting watts6875 W
Running amps (@120/240V)45.8/22.9 amps
Peaks amps (@120/240V)57.3/28.6 amps
Run time @50% load10 h
Run time @25% loadN/A

Features

GFCI outletsNo
Covered outletsYes
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes
AC outlets2x Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R)
1x 120/240V 30A (L14-30R)
DC outletsNo
Data centerLifetime run hours
IndicatorsNo
Fuel tankSteel, 7.2 gal
Fuel gaugeYes

Misc

Weight170.9 lbs
Dimensions (L x W x H)27.5 x 27 x 25 in
Noise (lower limit)N/A
THD< 20%
EmissionsEPA
SecurityLow oil and overload protection
Spark arrestorYes
NeutralBonded to frame
Accessories includedOil
Warranty2 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.

About Generac

Generac Power Systems is an American based generator and power equipment manufacturer, founded in 1959. As its name suggests, the main focus of Generac are power generators, and other related electric equipment, such as switches, paralleling systems and small engines. The company has several manufacturing facilities based in the US, thus, their products are made in the USA. However, the company provides no information about the origin of their components.

Warranty Information

The Generac GP5500 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 Generac generators, please consult Generac's warranty policies. Alternatively, you can also contact their Customer Support: 1-888-GENERAC (888-436-3722).

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