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Old 01-12-2019, 02:58 PM   #1
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Champion 3500-Watt Portable Dual Fuel Inverter Generator

I am considering purchasing a Champion dual-fuel 3500 watt generator from Cabela's. I like the propane feature since I'm bringing two 40 Pounders with me anyway on the front of my trailer.

So please tell me has anyone had good success with this unit#100264? It says it would run a 13500 BTU air conditioner. I do like the future option when we live on the road at retirement that I could buy a 2nd and parallel kit it for 50 amp service

There are lower-cost options but my back can't handle those 135 pound units this one says it's only 93 lbs and 56 db. And based on the height it would fit in my F250 truck bed with the secure undercover locked during transport.

Please share your honest opinion. Thank you from Derek and Elizabeth.
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Old 01-12-2019, 03:12 PM   #2
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Predator

The predator 3500 inverter generator is on sale for $689 starting yesterday at harbor freight...not negating the Champions, just providing useful information.
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Old 01-12-2019, 03:49 PM   #3
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"...I do like the future option when we live on the road at retirement that I could buy a 2nd and parallel kit it for 50 amp service..."


I'm not sure that this is 'the' 50amp RV service you are thinking it is...

if the base model you are considering is the 3,500watt model, then having two of them in 'parallel' would render a total output of 7,500watts, or a maximum of ~60+ AMPS.... not the true 100amps of 50amp RV Service that you find at rv parks and campgrounds.

True 50amp RV Service is actually a 240v output of TWO hot legs, BOTH at 50amps, thru a double-pole 50amp set of breakers. This combination, thru your 50amp Shore Cord, and to your 50amp Main breaker panel, is split into two 120v sides - providing 50amps to BOTH 'sides' of your breaker panel, for up to 100amps of usable power.

Most folks who own 30amp RVs might assume that the bigger 50amp RV service is simply a different plug outlet with only 20amps more power - but it's actually more than TRIPLE the output of a 30amp outlet.


Since two generators with 3,500watts of output, run in parallel, will give you around ~60amps of output, you can still probably do everything you want to do, all at the same time, in your coach...including running BOTH roof air conditioners, etc. You may have to par back on other items, but it's possible. Many folks can run two air conditioners on 30amps even, like we do. 60amps would be plenty, though. It's just not quite the 'same' as 50amp RV service.
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Old 01-12-2019, 03:50 PM   #4
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I believe the generator is rated for 500'. Engines will lose ~3% per 1,000' over the rated altitude, due to oxygen levels. So, whether or not it would run your A/C depends on where you camp. Propane has less energy than gasoline, so you also lose power if you're running on propane. Finally, make sure you start with the correct rating. The 3,500 W generator won't provide you 3,500 watts. It provides 3,200 watts on gas and 2,880 watts on propane. Running watts are the key spec, not peak watts.

On a beach in NC? Most likely. In the CO Rockies? You'll only be getting around 2,000W out of the engine off propane, so you'll be running gas and hoping for around 2,400W.

Good luck.
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Old 01-12-2019, 03:55 PM   #5
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Champion 3500-Watt Portable Dual Fuel Inverter Generator

I have the Champion 3500-Watt Dual Fuel Generator about which you inquire. I love mine. It starts first time, every time, and it has enough power to run my air conditioner and everything else I need in the trailer. I chose it especially because of the dual fuel feature. In point of fact, I've never run it on gasoline. I've always run it on propane. This way I don't have to worry about running all the gasoline fuel out of the line and the carb before storing it. I also don't have to worry about having a gas can flying around in the bed of the pickup. It runs very quietly, is safe for sensitive electronics, and stays cool enough that I can run it in the forward part of the bed of the pickup without having to off-load it onto the ground. I also bought a cheap propane hose extension and y-valve for one of the trailer propane tanks so the generator will run off the trailer propane tanks. I highly recommend this generator. I also added a check engine hour meter to keep track of when oil changes are due. It was simple to add it.
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Old 01-13-2019, 01:19 PM   #6
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I've got one. Great generator. I have never run it on gasoline, just propane.
Runs my 13.5k AC without a problem. It is light enough that I can get it in and out of the truck bed without a problem. If your trailer has an onboard quick connect for hooking up a grill, you can make an adapter to run the generator from it.

Champion Dual Fuel Inverter Q.C. to RV On Board Propane
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Old 01-13-2019, 01:40 PM   #7
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I have one. It's great.
Super easy maintenance.
Love the propane option (less mess/no winterizing BS/no jetting for altitude) -I've never ran gas in mine.

My good friend has a food truck (owner/operator) as his job and installed this unit in the enclosure on the truck. His experience has been just like mine...just change the oil and operate it.
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Old 01-13-2019, 01:52 PM   #8
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Just curious, about how many hours could you expect from a 30 pound propane tank?
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Old 01-13-2019, 03:45 PM   #9
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Propane use on Champion 3500

Can't speak to how long it would run on a 30# bottle, but we average about 19 hours on a 20#.

We have no problem running our 50 amp AC in hot, humid weather with this unit. We have even run the microwave at the same time.
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Old 01-13-2019, 04:10 PM   #10
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This is the model I have. I have run both gas and lpg in mine. I used it for hunting this past Nov, and something to be aware of is that the on board battery will not charge while running. It comes with a trickle charger that you can plug into one of the generator outlets and charge while running it. No option to add a remote starter fob with that model. It will also run your AC.
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