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Powermate CX3500 Spec Review

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

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Picture 1 of the Powermate CX3500
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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. (source: Powermate (opens in a new tab))

Zoom on the Powermate CX3500

In a nutshell, the Powermate CX3500 is a portable generator mostly geared towards:

  • RV travellers who wish to upgrade their experience to another level
  • Occasional participants of outdoor events, competitions, concerts and festivals
  • DIYers who wish to improve their efficiency with tools
  • Homeowners who want to be sure of their ability to power their fridges, cooking tools, heating and lighting equipment during power failures

The following sections will present you in detail its power characteristics, the different outlets it offers, its overall portability, the extra features it benefits from, and any relevant emission compliance details.

Power & Run Time

The Powermate CX3500 in use

The Powermate CX3500

The Powermate CX3500's engine, 208 cc Powermate OHV 4-stroke, fueled by gasoline, can deliver 120V. It provides a running wattage of 3500W and reaches a peak wattage of 4375W.

This generator features a simple traditional pull-start mechanism.

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

Outlets

The control panel includes the following 4 AC outlets:

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

This Powermate generator is RV Ready, as it features a TT-30R receptacle (TT stands for 'Travel Trailer').

Portability

The design of the Powermate CX3500 is a typical, open frame, with the dimensions of L25.6 x W23.8 x H21.6 in, offering support and stability and enabling the possibility of raising it 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. However, this lack of maneuverability is compensated by its wheel kit (⌀8") and its folding handle, with which you can conveniently shift it, once it's on the ground.

Features

Panel of the Powermate CX3500

The CX3500's control panel

The control panel of the CX3500 includes a convenient meter, which displays voltage, frequency and lifetime hours, helpful for the monitoring of its status and activity.

A built-in fuel gauge allows for a quick, easy and convenient check of the fuel level of the generator.

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).

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: oil, tool kit 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 and therefore, can be used 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).

  • Since the generator weighs in at a dry weight of 108 lbs, the Powermate CX3500 belongs in the expected weight range for devices which can produce between 3000 and 4000 rated watts. If weight matters to you, one of the champions in this power range is the WEN GN400i with only 66.1 pounds.
  • Given that the CX3500 reaches an autonomy of around 12.2 hours with a full tank and at 50% load, it is placed 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 Honda EB4000X, boasting with around 16 hours.
  • Even though run times are undoubtedly important, they are dependent on the fuel capacity to a large extent. For a more wholesome picture, we must take into consideration the fuel consumption of the generator. This generator has an estimated fuel consumption of roughly 0.37 GPH (gallon per hour) at a 50% load, rendering it somewhat average compared to devices of a similar output. If you wish to acquire one of the most gasoline efficient products of this power range, the Westinghouse iGen4200, with a fuel consumption of 0.17 GPH could be in your good books.

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
Peaks amps36.5 amps
Run time @50% load12.2 h
Run time @25% loadN/A
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)N/A
THDN/A
EmissionsCARB
SecurityLow oil and overload protection
Spark arrestorYes
NeutralBonded to frame
Accessories includedOil, funnel and tool 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.

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. What we know for sure is that in 2009, they have signed under what they call “partnership” (more accurately ownership) with the Italian PRAMAC. As of 2020, it would seem that Generac has now taken over the manufacturing of Powermate's portable generators.

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: 1-888-977-2622.

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 sizing calculator.
ItemRunning WattsStarting Watts
At homeDish washer15003000
Refrigerator (energy star)1921192
Vacuum cleaner10751175
Total2767 W4267 W
For campingRV AC (11,000 BTU)10101600
RV refrigerator180600
Electric fry pan15001500
Radio100100
Total2790 W3380 W
For workGrinder14002500
Demolition hammer12601260
Bug zapper8080
Total2740 W3840 W
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(0)You have already voted this

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