Predator generators

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1,411
Location
Ohio
Giving some thought to getting rid of my inverter generator and getting a Predator 4000 watt generator instead. The Powerhouse I have is 2000 watts and it's always been a pain to get it started. Figured a 4000 would be a little more practical and reviews seem generally favorable. Anything I should watch out for? Mostly Field Day use for ham radio, backup power if there's an extended power outage.
 
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7,072
Location
The Midwest
Does it have a fuel line valve? Shutting the fuel line off and letting it run until it stops helps prevent the carb from gumming up.
 
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8,943
Location
Marshfield , MA
No exp with genset. BUT the Predator I re-powered my Sno- Thro with is very easy to start. I'm tempted to buy another and keep it for a
Quote:
tune up
. Replacing the engine was waay easier than fixing a 40 yr old Tecumseh grin2
 
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2,790
Location
USA
The non-inverter generator will have much more noise and fuel consumption. Proper put-away by draining the fuel system is essential for trouble free starting after months of storage. Whether you have a cut off valve or not, you should empty the gas tank then run until it runs out.
 
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3,543
Location
Slovenia EU
Originally Posted By: Dave Sherman
Giving some thought to getting rid of my inverter generator and getting a Predator 4000 watt generator instead. The Powerhouse I have is 2000 watts and it's always been a pain to get it started.
It applies to all marks/brands wink
 
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1,612
Location
Ocala, Florida
I have the Coleman 4000 which is the same thing as the Predator. Great little genny! I turn the fuel valve off every time its used and allow it to run out before storing, I also keep stabil in the fuel tank. Starts first time, every time I've ever needed it and runs like a top!
 
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614
Location
Utah, USA
I have the big quiet Predator generator for my camp trailer. Handles the A/C with ease, runs quiet, and starts extremely easily. My son (9 last summer) was starting it with the pull cord pretty easily.
 
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24,866
Location
Upstate NY
If you have propane or natural gas, go that route. Gasoline is a PIA. You can do all the things needed so it will start right back up. But storing the many gallons of gas that is going to be needed for running during an extended outage. That is a PIA by itself.
 
Messages
366
Location
Michigan
Originally Posted By: Dave Sherman
Giving some thought to getting rid of my inverter generator and getting a Predator 4000 watt generator instead. The Powerhouse I have is 2000 watts and it's always been a pain to get it started. Figured a 4000 would be a little more practical and reviews seem generally favorable. Anything I should watch out for? Mostly Field Day use for ham radio, backup power if there's an extended power outage.
I have the Predator 4000 and I like it a lot. Good price, fairly quiet, starts easy. It has the fuel shut off, so you kill the fuel to run the carb dry. Things to keep in mind: Get rid of the China made spark plug early (or buy a spare NGK and tape it to the unit), store it with Stabil in the fuel, and realize it is 4000 peak watts, 3200 running watts. If that's not enough juice, step up to the next size.
 
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3,566
Location
Somewhere
Originally Posted By: Donald
If you have propane or natural gas, go that route. Gasoline is a PIA. You can do all the things needed so it will start right back up. But storing the many gallons of gas that is going to be needed for running during an extended outage. That is a PIA by itself.
I'm not sure I'd want to run a genny off propane - if you're using 20/30/50/100lb bottles the storage is the same issue as gas although it doesn't go bad but tanks rust. And if you've got a tank for heating/cooking you'll be competing for that propane unless you upgrade. And then there's the de-rating on Propane. Natural gas would be the best but sizing and plumbing will have to be taken into account. It also de-rates same as propane. Gas isn't that bad if you have a detached shed to store 10-15 gallons. I store the generator full (5 Gallons), 2 5 gallon cans, a 2.5 gallon can. I do mean to add another 5-10 gallons though. I use StaBil and MMO and rotate through using them for lawn care and once a year I dump the gas into the truck and fill it all up. If there's a disaster I can go for a while on that and within 1 hour can be in quite a few major areas to get more gas. I've got the old 5500 watt Chicago Electric Blue generator. It works great, starts pretty easily (electric) and runs great. I'd not hesitate to buy another. I'm seriously thinking of the 3500w inverter for the camper.
 
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Messages
32
Location
MN
Unless you have a true diaphragm style carburetor, turning off the fuel valve will not allow you to run the carburetor dry. The engine will stop running, but residual fuel will remain and It is still necessary to manually drain the float bowl.
 
Messages
366
Location
Michigan
Originally Posted By: HeritageHighRoof
Unless you have a true diaphragm style carburetor, turning off the fuel valve will not allow you to run the carburetor dry. The engine will stop running, but residual fuel will remain and It is still necessary to manually drain the float bowl.
Yes, this is true. The Predator has a manual drain bolt on the carb bowl. Not as convenient as the spring loaded ones on B&S engines, but it does the job.
 
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35,866
Location
ME
I have a duel-fuel generator. Trade my tired old propane tanks that people just give me for Blue Rhino then refill the Rhinos at BJs. They're stored in a woodshed so if they rust out and leak, they don't leak in my residence. This would take many years vs many months for gasoline.
 
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3,543
Location
Slovenia EU
Originally Posted By: Dave Sherman
The Powerhouse I have is 2000 watts and it's always been a pain to get it started. Anything I should watch out for?
Could be even that you just need to adjust valve lash...
 
Messages
1,605
Location
Watertown, New York
I would also give Champion a look! I have one similar in size to the Predator you are looking at, and the Champion seems to have a slightly better muffler, and is quieter than the Predators I have heard in action. Similar price points as well. Champion has 3 year warranty vs 90 days at HF! Best deal I have seen lately is at Sams Club, dual fuel gas or propane for $299 Sams Club Champion Tractor Supply stocks as well, not quite as cheap for the gas only version TSC Champion
 
Messages
128
Location
WV
Originally Posted By: cronk
I would also give Champion a look! I have one similar in size to the Predator you are looking at, and the Champion seems to have a slightly better muffler, and is quieter than the Predators I have heard in action. Similar price points as well. Champion has 3 year warranty vs 90 days at HF! Best deal I have seen lately is at Sams Club, dual fuel gas or propane for $299 Sams Club Champion Tractor Supply stocks as well, not quite as cheap for the gas only version TSC Champion
Yep, Champions are great generators. I have a 2011 3500 watt model and it still starts on the first pull. I always store it full of 100% 91 octane gas (treated with a double dose of Sta-Bil Marine 360). I don't drain the carb, just turn off the fuel supply valve and shut it down. I drain the gas tank and refill every spring and fall.
 

Dave Sherman

Thread starter
Messages
1,411
Location
Ohio
Thank all, picked up a Predator 4000 today. Couldn't pass it up since it went on a 3-day sale for $279 and the local HF had them in stock. Pretty heavy compared to the inverter (128 pounds dry), but I expected that. Wheel kit took some figuring out, I thought they had shorted me 4 nuts but it turns out there are captive nuts on the frame that the instructions don't mention, and they don't mention what to do with the 2 extra washers; figured out they go in the rubber feet so the bolts don't pull through. Oiled it, gassed it, and it fired up on the first pull. Ran it for an hour with a 500 watt halogen lamp. Definitely louder than the inverter, but I discovered some of the noise is the plastic control panel vibrating against the gas tank. Maybe some foam weather strip material would dampen that. Figure I'll break it in on the GTX 10W-30 I had and run Rotella 5W-40 after a few hours. Thanks for the tips on turning off the fuel valve; I've always done that on the inverter but it's still a pain to start even with Sta-bil in the tank. I think the auto choke is its biggest headache, I have to hold it closed when starting which means opening the case. Closing the fuel valve on the Predator makes the float bowl dry, I didn't get anything out of it when I opened the drain.
 
Messages
3,543
Location
Slovenia EU
Originally Posted By: Dave Sherman
Thanks for the tips on turning off the fuel valve; I've always done that on the inverter but it's still a pain to start even with Sta-bil in the tank. I think the auto choke is its biggest headache
If everything else is in order (your fuel system...your carburetor is WP etc) I would guess that your valve lash/clearances are out of limits....set your valves and everything will be ok with your "old" inverter generator wink
 

Dave Sherman

Thread starter
Messages
1,411
Location
Ohio
Given the poor construction quality, the valve lash and magneto air gap are probably questionable. Still, it starts and runs fine - if I hold the choke closed to get it started.
 
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