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Predator 6500 Spec Review

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

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Predator 6500Predator 6500Predator 6500Predator 6500
Note: Predator Generators purchased at Harbor Freight do not include the wheel kit, which is a separate purchase. Other sellers may include it.
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Price History
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Price history for the Predator 6500
Latest updates:
  • $549.99 - January 31, 2021
  • $519.99 - January 19, 2021
Data source: harborfreight.com
Since: January 19, 2021
  • Highest Price: $549.99 - January 31, 2021
  • Lowest Price: $519.99 - January 19, 2021

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.

Zoom on the Predator 6500

In summary, the Predator 6500 is a portable generator especially useful for:

  • RV travellers looking for even more independence
  • Occasional participants of outdoor events, competitions, concerts and festivals
  • Food truck owners who do not wish to see their business interrupted under any circumstances
  • Homeowners in need of an emergency backup power for their essentials
  • Professionals who want to ensure that a power failure will not prevent them from working

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 Predator 6500 is powered by a 301 cc (8 hp) OHV 4-stroke engine. It delivers 120/240V, runs on gasoline and offers a running wattage of 5500W as well as a peak wattage of 6500W.

With a noise rating of 74 dBA (just slightly more noisy than a vacuum cleaner), the generator features a simple traditional pull-start mechanism.

With a full tank, the 6500 can operate for around 14.5 hours at 50% load (fuel consumption around 0.55 GPH), thanks to its fuel capacity of 8 gallons.

Outlets

The control panel provides the upcoming 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.

As the 6500 holds a twist-lock L14-30R receptacle, it is transfer switch ready: you'll easily be able to connect it to your breaker box to power your home during a power outage.

Portability

The design of the Predator 6500 is a typical, open frame, with the dimensions of L26.9 x W22 x H22.8 in, offering support and stability and enabling the possibility of raising it above ground level. The device has been designed for tough environments and demanding outdoor use.

Although this generator is technically considered 'portable' (in the sense that it can be moved), its 161 lbs make it incredibly difficult to manually lift and transport. Nevertheless, thanks to a wheel kit (separate purchase from Harbor Freight or Amazon), the generator can be easily moved, once placed on the ground.

Features

Panel of the Predator 6500

The 6500's control panel

A light indicator shows you if its oil levels are insufficient.

The generator includes a built-in fuel gauge, a quick, easy and convenient method of checking the device’s gas level.

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).

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. A storage cover is available, as a separate purchase.

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, so it is adequate for use in forested areas.

Product Videos

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 matters to you, one of the champions in this power range is the WEN GN6000 with only 119 pounds.
  • This generator has a somewhat average expected noise for its power range, rated at 74 dBA. For those who are looking for a less noisy device, we suggest the Honda EU7000iS. With just 52 dBA, it is one of the most quiet devices in this power range.
  • 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.
  • 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 generator has an average fuel consumption among comparably powerful devices, as it reaches 0.55 GPH (gallon per hour) at a 50% load. If not satisfied with the afore-mentioned fuel consumption, you may wish to check out the Westinghouse WGen5300v. With a fuel consumption of as little as 0.35 GPH, it is one of the most efficient generators currently on the market.

Price comparison

As you can see from this interactive chart, when compared to other 5000-6000W generators, the Predator 6500 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
  • 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% loadUnknown
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
NeutralBonded to frame
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.

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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 generator sizer.
ItemRunning WattsStarting Watts
At homeAC (10,000 BTU)15002200
Dish washer15003000
Sump pump (1/2 hp)10502150
Refrigerator (energy star)1921192
Radio100100
Set of 5 LED light bulbs5555
Total4397 W5897 W
For campingRV AC (11,000 BTU)10101600
RV refrigerator180600
Hair dryer18001900
Radiant heater13001300
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.

Does the 6500 need to be grounded? (Asked October 28, 2020)

It is always safer to ground your generator.

how to get a wiring diagram (Asked April 15, 2021)

Wiring diagrams may be obtained by contacting Harbor Freight: 1-800-444-3353.

Can you make the predator 6500 w generator with an electric start having electric start (Asked April 16, 2021)

The 301cc engine of the Predator 6500 is not electric start capable.

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

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Predator 6500
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2 Reviews
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  1. 5
    Price
    100
    Value
    100
    Quality
    100
    Performance
    100

    This is the best generator I have ever owned. No need for electric start, it cranks first pull every time. It ran everything in my house during a three day power outage including the water heater and well pump (not at the same time though, I shut off the pump when the water heater was on)

    + PROS:
    • It cranks with the first pull of the starter rope and it runs a long time on a tank of gasoline.
    - CONS:
    • The only thing I can think of is that it doesn't have an hour meter so you can keep track of when to change the oil.
    Helpful(1) Unhelpful(0)You have already voted this
  2. Avatar
    aaron mark smith December 8, 2020 at 3:51 pm
    5
    Price
    100
    Value
    100
    Quality
    100
    Performance
    100

    We bought this Predator 6500 used so we do not know how many hours it was used. But it has been reliable and we have used it for equivalent of 2 weeks full run time on and off. Change the oil for every 80 hours of run time.
    Add fuel stabilizer to each fill up. Always turn gas off and run residual fuel in carb till engine dies to store it away. Run engine at least once every month or two for 15 minutes even when stored. Very reliable, it starts every time on 2nd pull start. Its a little noisey, good idea to build a enclosure insulsted with fresh air intake and exhaust. And it runs a small house with lights on, 2

    + PROS:
    • Starts every time if you take care of it.
    • Reliable, again if you keep fresh fuel and oil in it and change spark plug for every 100 hours.
    • Runs a small house with fridge's, washing machine and dishwasher, and microwave.
    • Good fuel efficient. 14.5 hour run time on full tank 8 gallons.
    - CONS:
    • A little noisey, needs insulated sound enclosure.
    • A little heavy to move around.
    Helpful(0) Unhelpful(0)You have already voted this

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