Zoom on the WEN DF400i
In summary, the WEN DF400i is a quiet and compact portable inverter generator especially useful for:
- RV travellers who wish to upgrade their experience to another level
- Occasional participants of outdoor events, competitions, concerts and festivals
- Handcrafting enthusiasts who wish to work on-the-go
- Homeowners who want to be able to use the most necessary devices in their household, even during a blackout
- Camping and tailgating hobbyists looking for a portable power source
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
With its dual-fuel technology, the powerful and versatile WEN DF400i provides an output of 120V. While gasoline-powered, it gives a running wattage of 3200W along with a peak wattage of 4000W. While propane-powered, it provides 2900 rated watts and 3200 starting watts. Additionally, as the generator is parallel capable (parallel kit not included), it can be linked to a second unit for more power.
WEN’s Auto Fuel Selection technology automatically selects the fuel source (LPG or gasoline) depending on availability and prioritizes LPG. Thus, if a propane tank with enough LPG is connected, the generator will automatically use LPG. If no propane tank is connected, or if there is not enough LPG remaining in the tank, the generator will use gasoline.
Enjoying a noise rating of 58 dBA (less noisy than a conversation at home), this inverter generator can be started thanks to a simple traditional pull-start mechanism, but also to a convenient and easy-to-use electric starter (battery included).
The running time of the DF400i, with its 2.2 gallons fuel capacity, can reach around 8.5 hours at 50% load on a full tank of gasoline (fuel consumption around 0.26 GPH). With propane, it can reach around 9 hours (on a 20 lbs tank - propane consumption around 0.52 GPH).
Delicate electronics can be plugged in an AC outlets safely, as the DF400i generates a clean sine wave, reaching a <1.2% Total Harmonic Disruption (THD).
The control panel features the following 3 AC outlets:
Furthermore, it has 3 DC outlets: there's two 5V USB ports allowing you to conveniently charge electronics such as mobile phones and tablets and a 12V 8A (cigarette lighter style) receptacle allowing you to easily charge your batteries.
With its TT-30R receptacle (TT as in 'Travel Trailer'), this WEN generator is RV Ready.
As the WEN DF400i is an inverter generator, its encased design (L23.2 x W18 x H20.1 in) offers more aesthetics than a conventional, open frame product. This modern design aims to provide an ideal power solution to recreational users.
Since the generator weighs 100 lbs, it will be incredibly difficult to manually lift it and transport it, even though it is technically considered to 'be portable' (in the sense that it is movable). However, its challenging mobility is solved by its set of 2 wheels and its folding handle, which will ease its displacement, once it is on the floor.
Monitoring of the DF400i's status and activity is made possible by a digital data center, which provides information on the fuel level, voltage, power output and lifetime run hours and is one of the features of its control panel.
In addition to this info, several light indicators serve to show you when the generator is overloaded, the generator is ready and its oil levels are insufficient.
Thanks to a built-in fuel gauge, the inverter generator allows you to quickly, conveniently and easily check the gas level at a glance.
The fuel shutoff feature turns off the flow of fuel, allowing for the DF400i to use up the remaining fuel from the carburetor before automatically shutting down. This helps fight the build-up and blockages caused by stagnant fuel inside of the carburetor, minimizing maintenance while prolonging the unit’s lifespan.
As far as security is concerned, the generator can be used with a peace of mind, as it features an overload protection (circuit breaker) and an automatic low oil shut-off.
Besides the classic documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab) to get you promptly started, the WEN DF400i also comes with some accessories: tool kit, propane hose and funnel are included.
The WEN DF400i 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.
The WEN DF400i versus other generators
The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the WEN DF400i compare to generators of similar power (between 2500 and 3500 W).
- With a dry weight of 100 pounds, the WEN DF400i finds itself in the expected weight range for generators able to produce between 2500 and 3500 rated watts. 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 this inverter generator is rated for a lowest possible noise of 58 dBA, it can be considered as one of the more quiet of the products generating similar power. For those who are looking for a less noisy device, we suggest the Honda EU3000iS. With just 50 dBA, it is one of the most quiet devices in this power range.
- The DF400i's autonomy is somewhat low end compared to devices of its power range, as it reaches only around 8.5 hours at 50% load on a full tank. If you consider autonomy on a single full tank as one of the deciding factors, one of the generators in the same power range that offers the highest run time is the Predator 4375, with around 16 hours.
- While the run time is an important parameter, it is dependent on the fuel tank’s capacity and thus, doesn’t say much on its own unless we consider fuel consumption as well. This inverter generator, with an estimated fuel consumption of just 0.26 GPH (gallon per hour) at 50% load, is one of the more fuel efficient generators, for the previously mentioned wattage range. 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.
As you can see from this interactive chart, when compared to other 2500-3500W generators, the WEN DF400i 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
- In the expected price range
- Several accessories included
- RV Ready
- Electric start
- Parallel capable
- Dual Fuel
- Auto Fuel Selection technology
- Quiet for its power (58 dBA)
- Fuel efficient
- Decent weight (100 lbs)
- No remote start
- Relatively low run time
Features and Specifications
|Parallel capable||Yes, cable not included|
|Fuel||Dual Fuel (gasoline/propane)|
|Engine||212 cc OHV 4-stroke|
|Starting system||Recoil, Electric|
|Voltage||AC: 120V 60 Hz, DC: 12V|
|Running watts||3200 W||2900 W|
|Starting watts||4000 W||3200 W|
|Running amps||26.7 amps||24.2 amps|
|Peak amps||33.3 amps||26.7 amps|
|Run time @50% load||8.5 h||9 h|
|Run time @25% load||Unknown||Unknown|
|Automatic Voltage Regulation||Inverter|
|AC outlets|| |
|DC outlets||2x 5V USB port |
1x 12V 8A (cigarette lighter style)
|Data center||Power output, fuel level, lifetime run hours and voltage|
|Indicators||Low oil, overload and output ready|
|Fuel tank||2.2 gal|
|Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)||23.2 x 18 x 20.1 in|
|Noise (lower limit)||58 dBA|
|Security||Low oil and overload protection|
|Accessories included||Funnel, tool kit, propane hose, and battery|
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.
WEN Products, founded by Nick Anton in 1951, is an American power tool manufacturer and distributor, which claims to have a part in the development of modern chainsaw, soldering devices and wet sharpeners, through its research in random orbital technology. The Illinois based company expanded its distribution network to include various power tools, such as presses, drills and of course, power generators. As a distributor, WEN’s portfolio largely consists of branded products of different manufacturers, imported from Asia.
The WEN DF400i 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 WEN generators, please consult WEN's warranty policies (opens in a new tab). Alternatively, you can also contact their Customer Support: 1-847-429-9263.
Questions & Answers
What can it power?
|Item||Running Watts||Starting Watts|
|At home||Refrigerator (energy star)||192||1192|
|Total||2542 W||3542 W|
|For camping||Radiant heater||1300||1300|
|RV AC (11,000 BTU)||1010||1600|
|Set of 5 LED light bulbs||55||55|
|Total||2545 W||3135 W|
|Total||2550 W||3800 W|
Couldn't find the right answer for you? Ask your own question.