Powerhorse Portable Generator - 4000 Surge Watts, 3100 Rated Watts
I walked past the Power Horse brand generators for quite some time and dismissed them as just a cheaper "House Branded" item. Having bought my first backup generator a couple of years ago after a 3 day power outage, I didn't know much of anything about them at that time. So I purchased a name brand entry level 7500 watt rated machine and being a former electrician, wired it into my house via a welder plug in the shop.
The first thing I learned is that it wasn't a clean sine wave generator and the battery backup units on my electronics would not accept the power and run correctly on standby. So, I did a little research and discovered "Inverter" type units and picked up a 2000 watt rig of the same brand for use on the electronics during blackouts.
That all worked well, but not quite perfectly. The 2kw Inverter generator needs to be ran monthly for about an hour to keep the fuel system operating correctly as it has a fuel pump in it due to the design configuration. The 7500 watt main generator has the fuel tank mounted above the engine and a fuel shutoff valve so when shutting down, just remove load, turn fuel off and let it run the gas out of the carb and stall. The big one can then be stored for months and months between uses without any maintenance. The Inverter type not so. After a year and a half of running the little Inverter monthly, and missing a month or so and fighting to get it started, I tired of this.
So, I picked up a 10,500 watt North Star generator for the whole house - clean sine wave power - problem solved. No, problem not solved - not perfectly anyway. With air conditioning running, the motor startup on the compressor loads down the generator considerably. So, the Type A nerd wanted more. The 10,500 will handle the whole house, both house and workshop A/C's and everything else ok.
So, for electronics I picked up the little 3100 watt Power Horse generator. Basically, this one replaces the 2000 watt Inverter generator. It's clean sine wave power so all the electronics work good on it. A great generator.
What's great about it? Pretty much everything starting at the price. Clean sine wave power, portable and easy to move around with wheels and handle it comes with. Starts right up, oil fill is accessible. It's not too heavy at just over 100 lbs.
And the real beauty, something I noticed looking at one in the store, is the HUGE MUFFLER on it. Yes, this thing is QUIET compared to others and runs at about the same noise level as the 2000 watt, 2200 peak watt Inverter only this one puts out 3100 watts and 4000 watts peak.
And it has a conventional design style with the tank mounted above the engine and carburetor so it doesn't have a fuel pump. It does have a fuel shut off valve, so like the larger generators when shutting it down just remove load and shut the fuel off and let the engine run down the fuel level in the carburetor and stall. Storing it in my climate controlled workshop it can go for months and months without having to run it and the fuel in the tank won't go bad.
It also runs very cool.
A great generator and one of the best in it's class.
July 19, 2014
Broken at first then all was good
I received my generator and was shipped in a beat up box. I opened it up to find the front panel broken. I called northern tool and they wanted to pick up the old one and then send me a new one. After a decision from management they agreed to pick up the old and deliver the new one at the same time. The new one came and the driver wouldn't take the old one. The next day another driver came and finally took the old one. The new unit was easy to put together and you need to put 0.53 quarts of oil and no more. The label saids fill it up but the amount of oil is to much. Once the oil was right and we filled it up with gas it started on the first pull. It runs great. Ran it for half an hour to break it in. Bought it for my daughter. Can't wait until she puts it to use for the first time.
July 3, 2014
It was easy to set-up, I filled it with gas and oil and it cranked 2nd pull. Only tried it out with lamps and fans, but I intend on hooking it up to my breaker panel perminantly. It was a great buy. Thanks Northern Tool!
June 15, 2014
Great generator at a great price
I really like these little generators. I now own two. I first purchased the 2200 model over a year ago. This generator has the same 208cc motor, and a single circuit 110 -120 volt generator head with 1800 watts of power available continuously. It has run now more than 50 hours without a single hitch. It starts easily and runs very quietly. I recently purchased the 4000 model based on that experience.
I use these generators at my campsite to run power tools, lights, fans, pumps, a small microwave, a small electric heater, a very small air conditioner, the charger for my battery system and rechargers for my electronics. (naturally, not all these items are running at the same time!)
The 4000 model offers the same 208cc motor, two charging circuits, and 120 volt or 220 volt capability.
Each charging circuit can handle 1550 watts continuously. Add the two and you get the 3100 watt continuous power rating. Combine the two through the 220 volt outlet and you can power a 220 volt appliance with a total power demand of 3100 watts continuously.
This gives me a little more flexibility with my power usage. This generator, like the other model, comes with the wheel kit. It also includes a special oil funnel and a special spark plug tool. I don't think my earlier purchase included these two features, and I like them.
I assembled the generator out of the box in about twenty minutes, added .53 quarts of oil to the crankcase, added 3.9 gallons of no-ethanol gasoline to the tank, and pulled the rewind starter cord. The Powerhorse 4000 generator fired up after three or four easy pulls.
It ran very smoothly and quietly. I let it run for four hours the first time (breaking it in), and shut it off overnight.
I checked the oil the next morning (no usage that I could detect) and cranked it up again after only one pull. I let it run out the rest of the tank, and then changed the oil. (my personal O-C-D break-in procedure. Your practices may vary. ;-) )
After roughly ten hours of running in under light loads, I consider the generator well-proven and well broken in, and I put it into service when and as needed. I expect it to last me for years.
A couple of notes here:
1) I always connect a small fan to the generator's outlets and blow cool air across the motor and generator head constantly while it is running. It is just a little extra insurance to help guarantee a long, reliable service life. The fan uses less than 100 watts.
2) I also used a small electric resistance heater (800 watts) to create a constant one-half load on the generator while it was running in. This is just a way of testing the generating circuits and working the motor a little bit while it is running for the first ten hours.
3) I always shut off the gas and let the generator run with no load until the motor shuts off. This drains most of the gas out of the carburetor. I also use a fuel stabilizer in every five-gallon can of no-ethanol gas I buy. These two practices go a long way toward keeping the carburetor free of build-up over time, and help to ensure quick, easy starts after weeks or months of sitting idle.
I consider the powerhorse generators the best value in the generator market today, witness the fact that I have now purchased two of them. I am very pleased with both.
May 14, 2014
I have had this generator for abut 2 1/2 years now. It nearly always starts on the first pull or two. Recently I got to use it during an electrical outage. I have wired my hose such that I can just plug it in using an interlock switch in the circuit breaker panel and accompanying plug. It ran for 4 hours before the power came back on. I was able to run both refrigerators as well as both forced air heaters in my home, plus some lights. I highly recommend this generator.
February 5, 2014
Great little home generator
I have had this generator for 2 years now. Only needed it once, but it fires up right away and is really a fairly quiet running fuel miser. I would recommend this product for many applications, from daily work usage, to emergency backup power. While a larger generator would do a better job in providing total house power, this thing does a great job providing essential needs and can be stored very easily compared to the larger generators. You won't regret this purchase!
February 4, 2014
building our house
My Wife and I have been using our powerhorse generator to provide electricity while we are in the process of building our house. Before we bought ours I was on here reading these reviews. Everyone seemed to be pleased with the unit, starts easy, quiet, reliable. So we got one. I put oil into the engine, gas in the tank, it started on the very first pull. since then it has been starting on the first pull pretty much every time.. and it pulls very easy, can ever be started from a seated position.
February 4, 2014
Good SMALL generator
I bought this little generator to run a heater and some lights at the deer lease cabin. It did a great job. We would crank it up around 10 PM and it would run all night. It is not too loud and handled the heaters just fine. I have had occasion to use it as a back up at home to run the refrigerator when power was out a couple of times and it never has failed me. A good small generator overall.
February 4, 2014
I purchased a Powerhorse portable gas generator in-store last year. Although I have used it only sparingly, I have found it to start with ease each time considering is has sat for months in between starts, it is relatively quiet. I did not want to spend a lot of money on a generator because I did not expect to use it frequently - this Powerhorse generator has proven to be a great value so far.
February 4, 2014
PowerHorse 4K Generator
I purchased this generator several years ago after a storm nocked out our power for several weeks. It was the last one our local store had on hand at the time, because of the high demand for generators in our area. In fact, this generator had already been preped for a parking lot tent sale at the store. I used this generator to power my refridgerator and freezer and a few lights in the house for over a week. It worked flawlessly. I had another oppratunity to use it this year after a tornado left us powerless again. It started second pull and ran great. I store it with the gas tank empty and I run all the gas out of the carberator.
Now I get to take it to my daughters house, an ice storm has nocked out her power for a couple days now.
December 8, 2013