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WEN GN400i Spec Review

The WEN GN400i is a compact and lightweight open frame portable inverter generator with a rated wattage of 3500 W and a starting wattage of 4000 W.

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Picture 1 of the WEN GN400i
Picture 2 of the WEN GN400i
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Picture 4 of the WEN GN400i
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Set an alert for the WEN GN400i - Current lowest price: $431.39
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Price History
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Price history for the WEN GN400i
Latest updates:
  • $431.39 - December 1, 2020
  • $438.56 - November 30, 2020
  • $436.57 - November 29, 2020
  • $451.99 - November 20, 2020
  • $458.85 - October 1, 2020
  • $449.70 - September 4, 2020
  • $448.74 - August 25, 2020
  • $448.73 - August 24, 2020
Data source: homedepot.com
Since: August 24, 2020
  • Highest Price: $458.85 - October 1, 2020
  • Lowest Price: $431.39 - December 1, 2020

Description

Remember when you had clean and quiet portable power? The WEN 4,000-Watt Inverter Generator provides clean energy, free of voltage spikes and drops, at approximately half the noise level of a standard generator. Our 212cc 4-stroke OHV engine produces up to 4000 surge watts and 3500 rated watts of power. Designed to mirror a pure sine wave, this generator limits total harmonic distortion to under 0.3 percent at no load and under 1.2 percent at full load, making it safe to run laptops, cellphones, monitors, tablets and other sensitive electronics. (source: WEN (opens in a new tab))

Zoom on the WEN GN400i

In summary, the WEN GN400i is a compact and lightweight portable inverter generator especially useful for:

  • RV travellers wishing to enhance their freedom and nomad lifestyle
  • People occasionally participating in sporting competitions, open-air performances and outdoor 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

The WEN GN400i in use

The WEN GN400i

The WEN GN400i's core is the 212 cc OHV 4-stroke engine, which runs on gasoline. With an output of 120V, it provides a running wattage of 3500W and a peak wattage of 4000W. Additionally, as the generator is parallel capable (WEN Parallel Connection Kit (opens in a new tab) not included), it can be linked to a second unit for more power.

With a noise rating of 67 dBA (less noisy than background music), the inverter generator features a conventional pull-start mechanism.

With a fuel capacity of 1.85 gallon, the GN400i may run for around 7 hours at 50% load with a full tank (fuel consumption around 0.26 GPH).

The GN400i generates a clean sine wave: providing <1.2% 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

In addition, it provides 2 DC outlets: there's two 5V USB ports allowing you to conveniently charge electronics such as mobile phones and tablets.

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

Portability

The WEN GN400i has the following dimensions: L19.8 x W13.8 x H18.9 in. In combination with its conventional, open frame design, they provide support and allow the generator to be raised above ground level. This type of design is ideal for tough environments and heavy outdoor use.

The GN400i's dry weight of 66.1 lbs lets you use its power anywhere needed. Moreover, its open frame design makes it incredibly easy to grab the frame in order to change its location.

Features

Panel of the WEN GN400i

The GN400i's control panel

When the oil level is too low, the generator is on overload and the generator is ready, you will be informed by the featured light indicators.

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

The fuel shutoff feature turns off the flow of fuel, allowing for the GN400i 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 for its security measures, the device features an overload protection (circuit breaker) and an automatic low oil shut-off, letting you use it with a peace of mind.

With the basic documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab), letting you start the generator quickly, the WEN GN400i also comes with several accessories, including: funnel, oil and tool kit.

Emissions

The WEN GN400i is EPA-approved and CARB-compliant. Thus, selling and purchasing this generator is allowed in each of the 50 states, including California.

Moreover, it features a spark arrestor, so it is adequate for use in forested areas.

Product Videos

The WEN GN400i versus other generators

The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the WEN GN400i compare to generators of similar power (between 3000 and 4000 W).

  • As far as its dry weight is concerned, the WEN GN400i weighs just 66.1 pounds and thus, it is one of the lightest 3000 to 4000 rated wattage generators.
  • This inverter generator has a somewhat average expected noise for its power range, rated at 67 dBA. If noise emissions are important to you, one of the least noisy generators of this power range is the Cat INV4000E with only 51 dBA.
  • As far as autonomy is concerned, providing around 7 hours of runtime with a full tank at a 50% load, the GN400i falls into the low end in comparison with other devices of a comparable power output. Concerning the run times, one of the several devices with a comparable output, offering the highest autonomy, is the Honda EB4000X, which is able to run for 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 fuel consumption is your top priority, we suggest to check out the Westinghouse iGen4200, which has a fuel consumption of only 0.17 GPH and thus, is one of the most efficient devices in our database.
According to our stats, the following comparison is pretty popular: WEN GN400i vs WEN 56380i.

Price comparison

As you can see from this interactive chart, when compared to other 3000-4000W generators, the WEN GN400i 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
  • Parallel capable
  • Inverter
  • Lightweight (66.1 lbs)
  • Fuel efficient
AVERAGE SPECS:
  • Acceptable noise (67 dBA)
WEAKNESSES:
  • No data center
  • No electric start
  • Relatively low run time

Do you own the WEN GN400i 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
FuelGasoline
Engine212 cc OHV 4-stroke
Starting systemRecoil
Power
VoltageAC: 120V 60 Hz, DC: 5V
Running watts3500 W
Starting watts4000 W
Running amps29.2 amps
Peaks amps33.3 amps
Run time @50% load7 h
Run time @25% loadUnknown
Features
GFCI outletsNo
Covered outletsNo
Automatic Voltage RegulationInverter
AC outlets
  • 1x Duplex 120V 20A (5-20R)
  • 1x 120V 30A (TT-30R)
DC outlets2x 5V USB port
Data centerNo
IndicatorsLow oil, overload and output ready
Fuel tankSteel, 1.85 gal
Fuel gaugeYes
Misc
Weight66.1 lbs
Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)19.8 x 13.8 x 18.9 in
Noise (lower limit)67 dBA
THD< 1.2%
EmissionsCARB, EPA
SecurityLow oil and overload protection
Spark arrestorYes
NeutralFloating
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 WEN

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.

Warranty Information

The WEN GN400i 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?
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 homeRefrigerator (energy star)1921192
Hair dryer18001900
Toaster oven800800
Total2792 W3792 W
For campingRadiant heater13001300
RV refrigerator180600
RV AC (11,000 BTU)10101600
Slow cooker270270
Cell phone charger2020
Total2780 W3370 W
For workGrinder14002500
Demolition hammer12601260
Bug zapper8080
Total2740 W3840 W
Does this model have a fuel shutoff? (Asked February 26, 2020)

This model has a manual fuel shutoff. There's a valve that you can turn to the OFF position in order to let the generator run until the fuel is used up.

Does the Wen 400i has electric start? (Asked September 07, 2020)

The unit is recoil start only.

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