Predator 6500 Spec Review

The Predator 6500 (63964) is an open frame portable generator with a rated wattage of 5500 W and a starting wattage of 6500 W.

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Picture 1 of the Predator 6500
Picture 2 of the Predator 6500
Picture 3 of the Predator 6500
Picture 4 of the Predator 6500
Even though the pictures show wheels, Predator generators sold at Harbor Freight do not come with a wheel kit, which is a separate purchase.

Description

Our new Predator® line has been updated with your convenience and safety in mind. Powered by a reliable Predator® gas engine, this generator is ideal for emergencies, job-sites, food trucks, and outdoor recreation. GFCI outlets, larger fuel tank, longer run time make this generator an unbeatable value. 6500 starting watts and 5500 running watts make this unit capable of powering several home essentials during an outage or providing power on the go. Our new, larger gas tank means you can enjoy run times up to 14.5 hours @ 50% load. (source: Harbor Freight (opens in a new tab))

Zoom on the Predator 6500

In a nutshell, the Predator 6500 is a portable generator mostly geared towards:

  • RV travellers wishing to enhance their freedom and nomad lifestyle
  • People occasionally participating in outdoor fairs, festivals or events
  • Food truck owners who do not wish to see their business interrupted under any circumstances
  • Homeowners who want to be sure of their ability to power their fridges, cooking tools, heating and lighting equipment during power failures
  • Professionals who want to be able to deliver results, even during a power failure

In the following paragraphs, we shall explore the power characteristics, available outlets, portability, and any additional features of the device, along with its emission compliance information.

Power & Run Time

The Predator 6500's core is the 301 cc (8 hp) 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 6500W.

At a noise rating of 74 dBA (just slightly more noisy than a shower), the generator is started via a conventional pull-start mechanism.

With a fuel capacity of 8 gallons, the 6500 may run for around 14.5 hours at 50% load with a full tank (fuel consumption around 0.55 GPH).

Outlets

The control panel features the following 5 AC outlets:

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

It also sports 1 DC outlet: there's a 12V 8A (cigarette lighter style) receptacle with which charging your batteries is made easy.

Because the 6500 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 dimensions of the Predator 6500, which are L26.9 x W22 x H22.8 in, and its typical, open frame design provides stability and enables the generator to be raised above ground level. The device has been designed for tough environments and demanding outdoor use.

While the generator is considered to be technically 'portable' (in the sense that you can move it), manually lifting and transporting it may be challenging, due to its high weight of 161 lbs. However, this lack of maneuverability is compensated by a wheel kit (separate purchase), with which you can conveniently shift it, once it's on the ground.

Features

Panel of the Predator 6500

The 6500's control panel

When its oil levels are insufficient, you will be informed by the featured light indicator.

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

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 features previously mentioned, accessory-wise, the Predator 6500 comes with the usual documentation and owner's manual (opens in a new tab) needed to get you promptly started.

Emissions

The Predator 6500 is EPA-approved and CARB-compliant. It can therefore be sold and purchased in all 50 states, including California.

Moreover, it features a spark arrestor, making it usable in forested areas.

Product Video

The Predator 6500 versus other generators

The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the Predator 6500 compare to generators of similar power (between 5000 and 6000 W).

  • As for its weight, the Predator 6500 weighs only 161 pounds, making it one of the lighter generators in the 5000-6000 rated wattage category. If weight is your top priority, one of the champions in this power category is the Westinghouse WGen5300v, weighing just 107 pounds.
  • Because this generator emits noise as low as 74 dBA, it can be considered to have a pretty average expected noise rating for a device of its power. If noise emissions are important to you, one of the least noisy generators of this power range is the Honda EU7000iS with only 52 dBA.
  • Since the 6500 boasts with a run time of around 14.5 hours at 50% load, it can be safely judged as a device of a higher run time than most generators of a comparable output. Concerning the run times, one of the several devices with a comparable output, offering the highest autonomy, is the Cat RP5500, which is able to run for around 15 hours.
  • Autonomy holds its importance, however, it is largely dependent on the generator’s fuel capacity and so, it is nonsensible to discuss it without mentioning fuel efficiency as well. This generator has an average fuel consumption among comparably powerful devices, as it reaches 0.55 GPH (gallon per hour) at a 50% load. If fuel consumption is your top priority, we suggest to check out the Westinghouse WGen5300v, which has a fuel consumption of only 0.35 GPH and thus, is one of the most efficient devices in our database.

Here's a list of the most popular specific comparisons:

The bottom line

STRENGTHS:
  • GFCI Outlets
  • Lightweight for its kind (161 lbs)
  • High run time
AVERAGE SPECS:
  • Acceptable noise (74 dBA)
  • Decent fuel efficiency
WEAKNESSES:
  • No data center
  • No electric start
  • Wheel kit not included
  • Weak warranty

Do you own the Predator 6500 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
Engine301 cc OHV 4-stroke
Starting systemRecoil
Power
VoltageAC: 120/240V 60 Hz, DC: 12V
Running watts5500 W
Starting watts6500 W
Running amps (@120/240V)45.8/22.9 amps
Peaks amps (@120/240V)54.2/27.1 amps
Run time @50% load14.5 h
Run time @25% loadN/A
Features
GFCI outletsYes
Covered outletsYes
Automatic Voltage RegulationYes
AC outlets
  • 2x Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R) GFCI
  • 1x 120/240V 30A (L14-30R)
DC outlets1x 12V 8A (cigarette lighter style)
Data centerNo
IndicatorsLow oil
Fuel tank8 gal
Fuel gaugeYes
Misc
Weight161 lbs
Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)26.9 x 22 x 22.8 in
Noise (lower limit)74 dBA
THDUnknown
EmissionsCARB, EPA
SecurityLow oil and overload protection
Spark arrestorYes
Accessories includedNo
Warranty90 days

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 Predator

Predator portable generators are solely distributed by the Harbor Freight Corporation, which has an impressive list of over 200 trademarked products. The Predator brand is one of their newer lines of outdoor power products. As with many other makes and models of power equipment sold by Harbor Freight, Predator generators are manufactured in China.

Warranty Information

The Predator 6500 is covered under a warranty for up to 90 days. This warranty may be limited and may not cover all parts of the generator.
For more information about the warranty of Predator generators, please consult Predator's warranty policies stated in the user manual (opens in a new tab). Alternatively, you can also contact their Customer Support : 1-800-444-3353.

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 wattage calculator.
ItemRunning WattsStarting Watts
At homeSump pump (1/2 hp)10502150
Furnace fan (1/2 hp)8752350
Refrigerator (energy star)1921192
Electric range21002100
Security system180180
Total4397 W5872 W
For campingRadiant heater13001300
RV refrigerator180600
Hair dryer18001900
RV AC (11,000 BTU)10101600
Radio100100
Total4390 W4980 W
For workTable saw18004500
Grinder14002500
Drain cleaner250250
Electric fence (25 miles)250250
Bug zapper8080
Total3780 W6480 W
How can I attach a 12V battery to this generator? (Asked September 05, 2020)

Since this unit does not have an electric start, there are no reasons to attach a 12V battery to it.

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