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Powerhorse 4500i - 3700/4500W Open Frame Inverter Generator

The Powerhorse 4500i is a compact open frame inverter generator with a rated wattage of 3,700 W and a starting wattage of 4,500 W.

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Description

This Powerhorse Open Frame Inverter Generator delivers plenty of power, fuel efficiency and less than 2% distortion, making it perfect for operating computers, appliances, TVs and other sensitive electronics. It features a parallel-ready design for connecting two units together for up to twice the power.

Zoom on the Powerhorse 4500i

In a nutshell, the Powerhorse 4500i is a compact portable inverter generator mostly geared towards:

  • RV travellers wishing to enhance their freedom and nomad lifestyle
  • 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
  • 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 Powerhorse 4500i in use

The Powerhorse 4500i

The Powerhorse 4500i houses a 224 cc (7.5 hp) OHV 4-stroke engine, which provides 120/240V, consumes gasoline and delivers a running wattage of 3,700W along with a peak wattage of 4,500W. In addition, the device is parallel capable (parallel kit not included) and thus, can be linked to a similar or compatible unit for added power.

Enjoying a noise rating of 64 dBA (just slightly more noisy than background music), this inverter generator gets running thanks to a conventional pull-start mechanism.

With a full tank, the 4500i can operate for up to 14 hours (fuel consumption around 0.24 GPH), thanks to its fuel capacity of 3.4 gallons.

The 4500i produces a clean sine wave: thanks to a <2% Total Harmonic Distortion (THD), your sensitive electronics can be safely plugged in the AC outlets.

Outlets

The control panel provides the upcoming 4 AC outlets:

Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R)
120V 30A (L5-30R) receptacle
120/240V 30A (L14-30R) receptacle

Additionally, it features 3 DC outlets: there's a 12V 8A (cigarette lighter style) receptacle with which you may charge your batteries with ease and two 5V USB ports with which charging of electronics like mobile phones and tablets is made convenient.

Even if this Powerhorse generator isn't quite RV Ready, it still allows for an easy RV connection via an L5-30P to TT-30R adaptor, thanks to its L5-30R receptacle. Besides, since the 4500i bears a twist-lock L14-30R receptacle, it is transfer switch ready: it is easily connectible to a breaker box and can power your home in case of a power outage.

Portability

The Powerhorse 4500i has the following dimensions: L21 x W20.5 x H21.5 in. In combination with its conventional, open frame design, they provide support and allow the generator to be raised above ground level. The generator is designed for ideal use outdoors and in rough environments.

The 4500i can be taken anywhere with you, thanks to its weight of 90.4 lbs. Moreover, its open frame design makes it incredibly easy to grab the frame in order to change its location.

Features

Panel of the Powerhorse 4500i

The 4500i's control panel

The light indicators show you if the generator is overloaded, the oil level is too low and the generator is ready.

From a security standpoint, the product offers an automatic low oil shut-off and an overload protection (circuit breaker), allowing you to 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 Powerhorse 4500i also comes with some accessories: funnel and tool kit are included.

Emissions

The Powerhorse 4500i 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 Powerhorse 4500i versus other generators

The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the Powerhorse 4500i compare to inverter generators of similar power (between 3500 and 4500 W).

  • As for its weight, the Powerhorse 4500i weighs only 90.4 pounds, making it one of the lighter inverter generators in the 3500-4500 rated wattage category. If you are concerned by weight, one of the champions in the above-mentioned power range is the WEN GN400i, with a dry weight of just 66.1 pounds.
  • When compared to devices able to produce a similar running wattage, this inverter generator and its lowest emitted noise of 64 dBA is on the noisier side. If noise emissions are one of your priorities, you may be interested in the Westinghouse iGen4500DF, one of the least noisy generators similarly powerful as this one, rated for 52 dBA.
  • The 4500i's autonomy is somewhat low end compared to devices of its type and power range, as it reaches only up to 14 hours at 25% load on a full tank. If you consider autonomy on a single full tank as one of the deciding factors, one of the generators in the same power range that offers the highest run time is the Firman W03661OF, with up to 25 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 is rather wasteful, compared to other devices within the aforementioned output range, when it comes to gasoline consumption, as it reaches roughly 0.24 GPH at a 25% load. If fuel consumption is your top priority, we suggest to check out the Champion 200988, which has a fuel consumption of only 0.16 GPH and thus, is one of the most efficient devices in our database.

Price comparison

As you can see from this interactive chart, when compared to other 3500-4500W inverter generators, the Powerhorse 4500i 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

STRENGTHS:
  • In the expected price range
  • Several accessories included
  • Parallel capable
  • Inverter
  • Lightweight for its kind (90.4 lbs)
WEAKNESSES:
  • No data center
  • No electric start
  • On the noisy side (64 dBA)
  • Relatively low run time
  • Low fuel efficiency

Do you own the Powerhorse 4500i 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 readyNo
FuelGasoline
Engine224 cc OHV 4-stroke
Starting systemRecoil
Power
VoltageAC: 120/240V 60 Hz, DC: 12V
Running watts3,700 W
Starting watts4,500 W
Running amps (@120/240V)30.8/15.4 amps
Peak amps (@120/240V)37.5/18.8 amps
Run time @50% loadUnknown
Run time @25% load14 h
Features
GFCI outletsNo
Covered outletsNo
Automatic Voltage RegulationInverter
AC outlets
  • 1x Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R)
  • 1x 120V 30A (L5-30R)
  • 1x 120/240V 30A (L14-30R)
DC outlets1x 12V 8A (cigarette lighter style)
2x 5V USB port
Data centerNo
IndicatorsLow oil, overload and output ready
Fuel tank3.4 gal
Fuel gaugeNo
Misc
Weight90.4 lbs
Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)21 x 20.5 x 21.5 in
Noise (lower limit)64 dBA
THD< 2%
ComplianceCARB, EPA
SecurityLow oil and overload protection
Spark arrestorYes
NeutralFloating
Accessories includedFunnel and tool kit
Warranty2 years
Other model numbers83171

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.

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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". Powerhorse generators are engineered, developed and tested in Minnesota, but manufactured in China.

Warranty Information

The Powerhorse 4500i 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 sizer.
ItemRunning WattsStarting Watts
At homeSump pump (1/2 hp)10502150
Furnace fan (1/2 hp)8752350
Refrigerator (energy star)1921192
Freezer8101750
Cell phone charger2020
Total2947 W4422 W
For campingRadiant heater13001300
RV refrigerator180600
RV AC (11,000 BTU)10101600
Blender400850
Set of 5 LED light bulbs5555
Total2945 W3535 W
For workGrinder14002500
Demolition hammer12601260
Drain cleaner250250
Total2910 W4010 W

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Powerhorse 4500i
9 Total Score
1 review
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Price
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Value
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Quality
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User Reviews

  1. 4.5
    Price
    80
    Value
    90
    Quality
    90
    Performance
    100

    This generator will power anything you would need during a power outage..
    It will power most necessities for around 15 hrs.+ per tankful ..and is very
    quiet in case you have close neighbors.

    + PROS:
    • Very quiet
    • Long runtime
    • 120/240 for full house backup
    • Variety of outlet types
    - CONS:
    • No fuel gauge
    • No wheel/handle kit available
    Helpful(6) Unhelpful(0)You have already voted this

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