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Sportsman GEN3500DFi Spec Review

The Sportsman GEN3500DFi is a compact dual fuel inverter generator with a rated wattage of 3000 W and a starting wattage of 3500 W.

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Sportsman GEN3500DFiSportsman GEN3500DFi
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Description

Zoom on the Sportsman GEN3500DFi

In a nutshell, the Sportsman GEN3500DFi is a compact portable inverter 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
  • Camping and tailgating buffs looking to enhance their experience

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 Sportsman GEN3500DFi in use

The Sportsman GEN3500DFi

The dual-fuel technology of the Sportsman GEN3500DFi allows for an output of 120V and provides superb power and versatility. If gasoline-powered, the device provides a running wattage of 3000W and a starting wattage of 3500W. If propane-powered, it gives 2700 rated watts and 3150 starting watts. 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 69 dBA (less noisy than an office), this inverter generator gets running thanks to a conventional pull-start mechanism.

As for its running time, the GEN3500DFi, along with its 3.2 gallons fuel capacity, can run for around 10 hours at 50% load with a full tank filled with gasoline (fuel consumption around 0.32 GPH). If propane is used, it can operate for around 12 hours (on a 20 lbs tank - propane consumption around 0.39 GPH).

The GEN3500DFi generates a clean sine wave: providing <5% Total Harmonic Disruption (THD), delicate electronics can be plugged in its AC outlets safely.

Outlets

The control panel features the following 3 AC outlets:

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

Furthermore, it has 2 DC outlets: there's a 12V 8A receptacle with which you may charge your batteries with ease and a 5V USB port with which charging of electronics like mobile phones and tablets is made convenient.

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

Portability

The Sportsman GEN3500DFi's characteristic encased inverter generator design (L21.5 x W16.1 x H18.3 in), provides an esthetical advantage over any ordinary, open frame product. This modern design aims to provide an ideal power solution to recreational users.

As the GEN3500DFi's weight is only 83 lbs, it can follow you and your power needs anywhere. Additionally, a conveniently placed double handle is a great enhancement to the grip, which tremendously helps when moving the GEN3500DFi across any distance.

Features

Panel of the Sportsman GEN3500DFi

The GEN3500DFi's control panel

Several light indicators serve to show you when the oil level is too low, the generator is on overload and the generator is ready.

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).

Apart from the typical documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab), which lets you start it right away, the Sportsman GEN3500DFi also is packed along with the following accessories: battery charging cables, propane hose, tool kit and funnel.

Emissions

The Sportsman GEN3500DFi is EPA approved, but NOT CARB-compliant. Thus, it cannot be purchased or sold in California.

Product Video

The Sportsman GEN3500DFi versus other generators

The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the Sportsman GEN3500DFi compare to generators of similar power (between 2500 and 3500 W).

  • In terms of its dry weight, the Sportsman GEN3500DFi stands at only 83 lbs, meaning that is one of the lighter devices of the 2500-3500 rated wattage category Regarding dry weight, one of the champions in the same power range is the Generac GP3300i, with a dry weight of only 59.5 lbs.
  • Since the inverter generator's noise is rated at 69 dBA, it has the roughly average expected noise for a device of similar power. If you’d prefer a less noisy device, one of the most quiet devices, which share the same power range with this one, is the Honda EU3000iS, whose lowest noise levels reach just 50 dBA.
  • The GEN3500DFi, falls within the average autonomy range compared to generators of a roughly same power, with a run time of around 10 hours at a 50% load and a full tank. If autonomy is your priority, one of the devices of a similar power output with the highest run time is the Honda EB4000X, reaching around 16 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. Standing at an estimated 0.32 GPH (gallon per hour) at a 50% load, this inverter 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 2500-3500W generators, the Sportsman GEN3500DFi 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
  • RV Ready
  • Parallel capable
  • Dual Fuel
  • Inverter
  • Lightweight for its kind (83 lbs)
AVERAGE SPECS:
  • Acceptable noise (69 dBA)
  • Decent run time
  • Decent fuel efficiency
WEAKNESSES:
  • No data center
  • No electric start
  • Not CARB-compliant
  • No spark arrestor

Do you own the Sportsman GEN3500DFi 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 readyYes
FuelDual Fuel (gasoline/propane)
Engine212 cc OHV 4-stroke
Starting systemRecoil
VoltageAC: 120V 60 Hz, DC: 12V
Power
 GasolinePropane
Running watts3000 W2700 W
Starting watts3500 W3150 W
Running amps25 amps22.5 amps
Peak amps29.2 amps26.3 amps
Run time @50% load10 h12 h
Run time @25% loadUnknownUnknown
Features
GFCI outletsNo
Covered outletsNo
Automatic Voltage RegulationInverter
AC outlets
  • 1x Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R)
  • 1x 120V 30A (TT-30R)
DC outlets1x 12V 8A receptacle
1x 5V USB port
Data centerNo
IndicatorsLow oil, overload and output ready
Fuel tank3.2 gal
Fuel gaugeNo
Misc
Weight83 lbs
Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)21.5 x 16.1 x 18.3 in
Noise (lower limit)69 dBA
THD< 5%
EmissionsEPA
SecurityLow oil and overload protection
Spark arrestorNo
Accessories includedFunnel, tool kit, propane hose, and battery charging cables
Warranty1 year

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 Sportsman Series

Sportsman Series is a small brand registered under the US based Buffalo corporation. Founded in 1964, the Buffalo Corporation is a small company, which sells tools and home products. Their brands include AmeriHome, Black Bull, Buffalo Tools and Sportsman Series – which offers a selection of generators and several other general products. The brand, and in fact, the corporation itself seemingly outsources all of its production overseas and acts only as a distributor, under its own brands.

Warranty Information

The Sportsman GEN3500DFi is covered under a warranty for up to 1 year. This warranty may be limited and may not cover all parts of the generator.
For more information about the warranty of Sportsman generators, please contact the Buffalo Tools Customer Support: 1-636-532-9888.

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 homeDish washer15003000
Refrigerator (energy star)1921192
Slow cooker270270
Cell phone charger2020
Total1982 W3482 W
For campingRV AC (11,000 BTU)10101600
RV refrigerator180600
Toaster oven800800
Blender400850
Total2390 W2980 W
For workGrinder14002500
Reciprocating saw730960
Drain cleaner250250
Total2380 W3480 W

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