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Powermate CX3500 - Spec Review

The Powermate CX3500 (PMC143500) is a portable open frame generator with a rated wattage of 3500 W and a starting wattage of 4375 W.

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Description

Trust in the portable power of Powermate’s CX Series generators. Featuring extended run times and sturdy framework for stable mobility, the CX Series are ideal for a variety of occasions like camping, picnics, tailgating and emergency home backup. CX Series generators are easy to power up, and their compact design takes up minimal storage space.

Zoom on the Powermate CX3500

In summary, the Powermate CX3500 is a portable generator especially useful for:

  • RV travellers who wish to upgrade their experience to another level
  • People occasionally participating in sporting competitions, open-air performances and outdoor festivals
  • DIYers who wish to improve their efficiency with tools
  • Homeowners who want to be able to use the most necessary devices in their household, even during a blackout

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 Powermate CX3500 in use

The Powermate CX3500

The Powermate CX3500's core is the 208 cc Powermate OHV 4-stroke engine, which runs on gasoline. With an output of 120V, it provides a running wattage of 3500W and a peak wattage of 4375W.

This generator is started via a simple traditional pull-start mechanism.

Thanks to a fuel capacity of 4.5 gallons, the CX3500 can operate for around 12.2 hours at 50% load with a full tank (fuel consumption around 0.37 GPH).

Outlets

The control panel features the following 4 AC outlets:

Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R)
120V 30A (L5-30R) receptacle
120V 30A (TT-30R) receptacle

With its TT-30R receptacle (TT as in 'Travel Trailer'), this Powermate generator is RV Ready.

Portability

The dimensions of the Powermate CX3500, which are L25.6 x W23.8 x H21.6 in, and its typical, open frame design provides stability and enables the generator to be raised above ground level. The design is ideal for rough environments and demanding outdoor use.

Although this generator is technically considered 'portable' (in the sense that it can be moved), its 108 lbs make it incredibly difficult to manually lift and transport. Still, once it is on the ground, its wheel kit (⌀8") and its folding handle can easily solve the issue of low mobility and allow for easy relocation of the device.

Features

Panel of the Powermate CX3500

The CX3500's control panel

The CX3500's control center features a convenient meter, which displays voltage, frequency and lifetime hours to aid you with the monitoring of its status and activity.

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

From a security point of view, the generator is equipped with an automatic low oil shut-off and an overload protection (circuit breaker), giving you a peace of mind during use.

While the standard documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab), helpful for starting the device promptly, come with the Powermate CX3500, the following accessories are also included: tool kit, oil and funnel.

Emissions

The Powermate CX3500 is CARB-compliant. Thus, selling and purchasing this generator is allowed in each of the 50 states, including California.

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

The Powermate CX3500 versus other generators

The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the Powermate CX3500 compare to generators of similar power (between 3000 and 4000 W).

  • At a weight of 108 pounds, the Powermate CX3500 places in the expected weight range of the generators in the 3000-4000 rated wattage range. If weight matters to you, one of the champions in this power range is the WEN GN400i with only 66.1 pounds.
  • Offering around 12.2 hours of running time on a full tank at 50% load, the CX3500 is within the average autonomy range of similarly powerful generators. If concerned with autonomy, one of the products of a comparable power output, which offers the highest run time, is the Predator 4375, boasting with 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. Standing at an estimated 0.37 GPH (gallon per hour) at a 50% load, this generator is somewhat average in this area compared to other devices, within the aforementioned wattage range. If you wish to further improve in the area of fuel efficiency, the Westinghouse iGen4200, which boasts with a gas consumption of only 0.17 GPH, may be the right generator for you.

Price comparison

As you can see from this interactive chart, when compared to other 3000-4000W generators, the Powermate CX3500 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
  • Several accessories included
  • RV Ready
AVERAGE SPECS:
  • Decent weight (108 lbs)
  • Decent run time
  • Decent fuel efficiency
WEAKNESSES:
  • No electric start

Do you own the Powermate CX3500 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 readyYes
FuelGasoline
Engine208 cc Powermate OHV 4-stroke
Starting systemRecoil
Power
VoltageAC: 120V 60 Hz
Running watts3500 W
Starting watts4375 W
Running amps29.2 amps
Peak amps36.5 amps
Run time @50% load12.2 h
Run time @25% loadUnknown
Features
GFCI outletsNo
Covered outletsYes
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes
AC outlets
  • 1x Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R)
  • 1x 120V 30A (L5-30R)
  • 1x 120V 30A (TT-30R)
DC outletsNo
Data centerVFT
IndicatorsNo
Fuel tank4.5 gal
Fuel gaugeYes
Misc
Weight108 lbs
Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)25.6 x 23.8 x 21.6 in
Noise (lower limit)Unknown
THDUnknown
EmissionsCARB
SecurityLow oil and overload protection
Spark arrestorYes
NeutralBonded to frame
Accessories includedOil, funnel, tool kit, and wheel kit
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.

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About Powermate

Powermate’s history is somewhat enigmatic, but they claim to have been on the market for over 40 years, selling portable generators and various outdoor power equipment. In 2009, they have signed under what they call “partnership” (more accurately ownership) with the Italian PRAMAC. In 2014, Generac acquired Powermate from PRAMAC.

Warranty Information

The Powermate CX3500 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 Powermate generators, please consult Powermate's warranty policies (opens in a new tab). Alternatively, you can also contact their Customer Support: 1-800-445-1805.

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 homeRefrigerator (energy star)1921192
Hair dryer18001900
Toaster oven800800
Total2792 W3792 W
For campingRadiant heater13001300
RV refrigerator180600
RV AC (11,000 BTU)10101600
Slow cooker270270
Total2760 W3350 W
For workGrinder14002500
Demolition hammer12601260
Bug zapper8080
Total2740 W3840 W
What is the noise rating of the CX3500?

Due to the lack of standardization in noise emission measurement, Powermate (Generac) does not provide their units' noise levels.

Can I run two refrigerators and a portable air conditioner? (Asked August 01, 2020)

At first glance, it should be fine. But wattage consumption varies from fridge to fridge, and from portable A/C to portable A/C. We recommend checking the actual wattage consumption of your appliances, and then insert these values in the "custom appliances" section of our generator sizer.

Couldn't find the right answer for you? Ask your own question.

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Powermate CX3500
4.3 Total Score
1 review
Add your review
Price
7
Value
5
Quality
3
Performance
2
1 Review
  1. 2.15
    Price
    70
    Value
    50
    Quality
    30
    Performance
    20

    Price is cheap, you get what you pay for. Our started to burn oil after 500 hours. Don’t buy. They won’t fix or replace

    + PROS:
    • Works good for about two weeks
    - CONS:
    • Doesn't last
    Helpful(0) Unhelpful(1)You have already voted this

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