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Powerhorse 4000 Spec Review

The Powerhorse 4000 is a compact open frame portable generator with a rated wattage of 3100 W and a starting wattage of 4000 W.

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Picture 1 of the Powerhorse 4000
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Price history for the Powerhorse 4000
Latest updates:
  • $519.99 - November 24, 2020
  • $499.99 - August 24, 2020
Data source: northerntool.com
Since: August 24, 2020
  • Highest Price: $519.99 - November 24, 2020
  • Lowest Price: $499.99 - August 24, 2020

Description

This Powerhorse Portable Generator provides clean, reliable electricity with less than 5% total harmonic distortion. 100% copper-wound generator head allows continuous operation without overheating. Features automatic voltage regulator with voltmeter and low oil shutdown.

Zoom on the Powerhorse 4000

In summary, the Powerhorse 4000 is a compact portable generator especially useful for:

  • RV travellers who wish to upgrade their experience to another level
  • Occasional participants of outdoor events, competitions, concerts and festivals
  • Handcrafting enthusiasts who wish to work on-the-go
  • Homeowners who want to be sure of their ability to power their fridges, cooking tools, heating and lighting equipment during power failures

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 Powerhorse 4000 in use

The Powerhorse 4000

The Powerhorse 4000's design includes a gasoline-fueled 212 cc OHV 4-stroke engine. With a 120/240V output, it gives a running wattage of 3100W and also a peak wattage of 4000W.

The generator is rated for a noise of 95 dBA (which is pretty noisy). Its starting mechanism is based on a conventional pull-start mechanism.

Thanks to a fuel capacity of 3.9 gallons, the 4000 can operate for around 10.6 hours at 50% load with a full tank (fuel consumption around 0.37 GPH).

The 4000 generates a clean sine wave: providing <5% Total Harmonic Disruption (THD), delicate electronics can be plugged in its AC outlets safely.

Outlets

The control panel features the following 9 AC outlets:

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

Furthermore, it has 1 DC outlet: there's a 12V 8A (cigarette lighter style) receptacle allowing you to easily charge your batteries.

Because the 4000 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

With its dimensions of L25.4 x W18.8 x H19.8 in, the conventional, open frame design of the Powerhorse 4000 offers stability and allows the generator to be raised above ground level. The generator is designed for ideal use outdoors and in rough environments.

Since the generator weighs 115 lbs, it will be incredibly difficult to manually lift it and transport it, even though it is technically considered to 'be portable' (in the sense that it is movable). However, its challenging mobility is solved by its wheel kit and its folding handle, which will ease its displacement, once it is on the floor.

Features

Panel of the Powerhorse 4000

The 4000's control panel

The 4000's status and activity may be monitored conveniently via the control panel, as it features a handy voltmeter that allows you to easily monitor power output anytime.

In addition to this info, a light indicator serves to show you when the oil level is too low.

The generator allows for a quick, easy and convenient assessment of its gas level, as it is equipped with a built-in fuel gauge.

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.

As for its accessories, apart from the previously mentioned features, the Powerhorse 4000 also comes with the basic documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab), allowing you to start it right away.

Emissions

The Powerhorse 4000 is EPA approved, but NOT CARB-compliant. Thus, it cannot be purchased or sold in California.

However, it features a spark arrestor, so it is adequate for use in forested areas.

Product Videos

The Powerhorse 4000 versus other generators

The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the Powerhorse 4000 compare to generators of similar power (between 2500 and 3500 W).

  • Since the generator weighs in at a dry weight of 115 lbs, the Powerhorse 4000 belongs in the expected weight range for devices which can produce between 2500 and 3500 rated watts. In terms of weight, one of the champions in their power range is the WEN GN400i, standing at just 66.1 lbs.
  • This generator, with its lowest possible noise rated at 95 dBA falls into the more noisy category, compared to other devise of a similar running wattage. If you’d prefer a less noisy device, one of the most quiet devices, which share the same power range with this one, is the Honda EU3000iS, whose lowest noise levels reach just 50 dBA.
  • Offering around 10.6 hours of running time on a full tank at 50% load, the 4000 is within the average autonomy range of similarly powerful generators. Furthermore, considering the run times, one of the generators which have a roughly same power output, with the highest autonomy, is the Honda EB4000X, as it provides around 16 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 somewhat less fuel efficient than devices of comparable output: its estimated fuel consumption reaches 0.37 GPH at a 50% load. If you are concerned with gasoline efficiency, having a fuel consumption of just 0.17 GPH, the Westinghouse iGen4200 is a device you should look out for.

Price comparison

As you can see from this interactive chart, when compared to other 2500-3500W generators, the Powerhorse 4000 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
  • Clean sine wave
AVERAGE SPECS:
  • Decent weight (115 lbs)
  • Decent run time
WEAKNESSES:
  • No electric start
  • Not CARB-compliant
  • On the noisy side (95 dBA)
  • Low fuel efficiency

Do you own the Powerhorse 4000 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
Engine212 cc OHV 4-stroke
Starting systemRecoil
Power
VoltageAC: 120/240V 60 Hz, DC: 12V
Running watts3100 W
Starting watts4000 W
Running amps (@120/240V)25.8/12.9 amps
Peaks amps (@120/240V)33.3/16.7 amps
Run time @50% load10.6 h
Run time @25% loadUnknown
Features
GFCI outletsNo
Covered outletsNo
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes
AC outlets
  • 4x Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R)
  • 1x 120/240V 30A (L14-30R)
DC outlets1x 12V 8A (cigarette lighter style)
Data centerVoltmeter
IndicatorsLow oil
Fuel tankSteel, 3.9 gal
Fuel gaugeYes
Misc
Weight115 lbs
Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)25.4 x 18.8 x 19.8 in
Noise (lower limit)95 dBA
THD< 5%
EmissionsEPA
SecurityLow oil and overload protection
Spark arrestorYes
NeutralBonded to frame
Accessories includedWheel kit
Warranty2 years
Other model numbers750138

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 Powerhorse

Powerhorse is a trademarked brand name of gas-powered outdoor products owned and distributed by the Northern Tool & Equipment Company Inc. through their store locations and online. Powerhorse outdoor products include gas- and electric-powered tools including pressure washers, wood chippers/shredders, log splitters, electric generators and inverters. The product line also offers engines and water pumps. The brand's motto is "Power You Can Depend On".

Warranty Information

The Powerhorse 4000 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 Powerhorse generators, please contact the Powerhorse Customer Support: 1-866-443-2576.

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 homeSump pump (1/2 hp)10502150
Furnace fan (1/2 hp)8752350
Refrigerator (energy star)1921192
DVD player350350
Total2467 W3942 W
For campingRadiant heater13001300
RV refrigerator180600
Toaster oven800800
LED TV150150
Pair of small speakers4545
Total2475 W2895 W
For workGrinder14002500
Halogen work light10001000
Total2400 W3500 W
How many hours to run before changing oil (Asked October 11, 2020)

Oil change schedule is detailed page 40 of the owner's manual (opens in a new tab).

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