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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 a nutshell, the Generac GP5500 is a portable generator mostly geared towards:

  • RV travellers looking for even more independence
  • Homeowners in need of an emergency backup power for their essentials

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 Generac GP5500 in use

The Generac GP5500

The Generac GP5500's core is the 389 cc Generac OHV 4-stroke engine, which runs on gasoline. With an output of 120/240V, it provides a running wattage of 5500W and a peak wattage of 6875W.

The generator features a simple traditional pull-start mechanism.

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

Since the GP5500 has a somewhat high THD (<20%), it is advisable to not use it for the powering of sensitive electronic devices.

Here are a few examples of what this generator could allow you to simultaneously power:Note: The above mentioned examples presume a maximum load of 75% and use wattage estimates. In addition, the items might not be able to start simultaneously. With our wattage calculator, you can predict if the product can fulfill your requirements.

Outlets

The control panel features 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 the following dimensions: L27.5 x W27 x H25 in. In combination with its conventional, open frame design, they provide support and allow the generator to be raised above ground level. The device has been designed for tough environments and demanding outdoor use.

As the generator's weight is 170.9 pounds, manually moving it or transporting it may be challenging, despite the fact that it is technically considered 'portable' (movable). Never less, thanks to a wheel kit (⌀9.5") and a folding handle (a decent solution to its lack of maneuverability), the generator can be easily moved, once placed the ground.

Features

Panel of the Generac GP5500

The GP5500's control panel

The control panel of the GP5500 includes an illuminated data center, which assists you in monitoring its status and activity, as it provides information on the lifetime run hours.

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

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).

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 and thus, may be used 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).

  • Weight-wise, the Generac GP5500 has only 170.9 lbs, which renders it one of the lighter generators which produce 5000 to 6000 rated watts. In terms of weight, one of the champions in their power range is the Champion 100519, standing at just 121 lbs.
  • Regarding its autonomy, the autonomy of the GP5500, reaching 10 hours at a 50% load, can be considered as low end, compared to other products of a roughly equal output. If autonomy is your priority, one of the devices of a similar power output with the highest run time is the Cat RP5500, reaching 15 hours.
  • While the run time is an important parameter, it is dependent on the fuel tank’s capacity and thus, doesn’t say much on its own unless we consider fuel consumption as well. In fact, this generator is not among the most fuel efficient, within the aforementioned wattage range : its estimated gasoline consumption at 50% load is around 0.72 GPH. If you wish to further improve in the area of fuel efficiency, the Westinghouse WGen5500, which boasts with a gas consumption of only 0.44 GPH, may be the right generator for you.
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.

Where to buy the Generac GP5500?

You can easily buy your Generac generator online. You will benefit from a convenient delivery and avoid carrying the heavy package yourself. Here are a few reliable online sellers:
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$729.00

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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