The Predator 3500 generator is a great mid-level power generator that will give you more than enough power for running your vital appliances during a blackout.
At 3500 watts, you can power various larger appliances, tools, and electronics.
This generator features a lot of the same features found on higher end generators and even had parallel outlets to allow you to hook up another Predator 3500 to get double the power.
In this review, I will take a closer look at the Predator 3500’s features and see how it measures up to more expensive inverters in the same power range.
Functions and Ease of Use
At first glance, the Predator 3500 can be a little intimidating as it is quite bulky.
However, this is a generator best seen in person to really appreciate the size and shape. A generator of this physical size is usually written off as being loud and noisy, but this generator is really quiet.
It is also an inverter generator, which means you get clean energy that allows you to safely charge sensitive electronics.
The Predator 3500 generator offers up 3500 starting watts and 3000 running watts which is a great range for just about any residential and smaller commercial use.
Taking a closer look at the Predator 3500, you will notice that the command center is front and center.
All of the outlets, buttons, and switches are lined out neatly and are organized to make quick work of utilizing all of its available features.
Starting from left to right, you will first notice a parallel outlet. This will allow you to hook up another Predator 3500 in parallel to get twice the amount of power.
Next, you will see a twist lock AC 120V outlet which is perfect for using larger tools or appliances. To the right of the twist outlet, you get two reset buttons to help when your generator becomes overloaded. A pair of AC 120V household outlets follow to allow you to power up your common appliances or tools.
On the right side of the command center, you will see a digital meter screen that will inform you of all of the important metrics of our generator.
Below the screen, you will have a 12V trickle charge outlet for charging batteries. An ESC throttle button allows you to toggle between a more fuel efficient mode when running a steady current.
Lastly, a rotating switch allows you to easily turn the generator on and off.
To make maintaining your generator easier, Predator has installed a quick release door to allow you to check and add oil with ease.
This will allow you to easily access the oil for a quick check before each use.
With an 11 hour run time at 25% load, you can expect this generator to last throughout the work day or overnight if needed.
This extended run time is due to the fuel efficient inverter design.
Although the generator’s 110lb weight may scare you, Predator includes built in all terrain wheels and handles to make transporting this generator super easy.
Noise Level - Is It Quiet?
A big concern that many people have with purchasing a generator is how noisy they can be.
After all, many generators are used in residential areas during blackouts and emergency uses.
As an industry standard, generator noise levels are measured in decibels and are noise readings are usually taken at 23 feet away from the generator. Most larger generators are going to operate in the 70-80 decibel range which is comparable to the loudness of a vacuum cleaner.
For those looking for a quiet generator, the Predator 3500 generator is going to be the perfect buy as it operates at a very quiet 57 decibels.
To put that into perspective, this is going to be about as loud as an average office setting or refrigerator.
With this low of a decibel rating from a 3500 watt generator, you should have no worries using the Predator 3500 around you home.
Specs, Gas Consumption & Capacity
Since this Predator generator is an inverter generator, you can expect it to have a more fuel efficient engine than most conventional generators.
For the 3500, you can expect an 11 hour run time at 25% load.
It utilizes a 212cc air cooled OHV engine and has a 2.6 gallon fuel tank.
It will feature a 120 VAC, 60 Hz, 25 A, 1 Phase output and includes a 30amp RV adaptor for easy hookup.
No good generator is complete without all of the accessories that go with it.
After all, no one wants to get a new generator and not have what they need to use it right out of the box.
To make things much easier when using your generator, Predator is going to include a DC cable, screwdriver, spark plug wrench, 30 amp RV adapter, and fuel funnel with the 3500 generator.
For optional accessories, you can purchase a parallel cable, extension cords, and a generator cover to keep dirt and debris off of the generator when in storage.
Service, Manual & Warranty
Predator is a leader in small engines manufacturing, so it is only right that they produce high quality generators.
Predator takes great pride in their workmanship and stands behind their products with a solid warranty.
On the 3500, you can expect a 2 year warranty to protect against defects in manufacturing and craftsmanship provided no other misuse or improper maintenance contributed to the defect.
To keep your generator running at its best performance (not to mention keeping your warranty) you are going to want to keep your generator well maintained.
The manual included with this generator will give you the proper maintenance schedule needed to keep your Predator 3500 running for years.
Predator 3500 Portable Generator VS the Competition
After looking at all of the great features of the Predator 3500, it is easy to see why it is a popular choice.
The Predator offers many of the features that most people look for while offering a super quiet noise level.
However, I am going to put it up against some of its competitors to see just how well it ranks.
Predator 3500 VS Champion 3500 100559
To start things off, we are going to put the Predator up against one of the most tried and true generator companies in the industry – Champion.
This Champion 3500 watt generator is one of their most popular generators, making it perfect competition for the Predator 3500.
While their names would suggest that they are in the same wattage range, the Champion generator actually has a starting watt rating of 4375 watts and a running watt rating of 3500 watts.
This overshadows the 3500 starting and 3000 running watts found on the Predator.
With an ultra quiet noise rating of 57 decibels, the Predator makes for stiff competition. The Champion 3500 is still pretty quiet at 68 dBa, but is no match when compared to the Predator.
When it comes to comparing the power outlets, there isn’t too much of a difference in quantity, but the quality is where Champion wins.
They both are going to feature a pair of household outlets and a 120V twist lock outlet, but the Champion is going to have a 30amp RV ready outlet. As an added bonus, you will also get the luxury of covered outlets on the Champion generator, which are great for protecting your outlets from dirt and moisture.
Predator 3500 VS WEN 56380i
Wen is another popular generator manufacturer with multiple sized generators to meet all types of needs.
Putting their 56380i generator against the Predator 3500 may be a little bit of a landslide, but I wanted to see just how well it stacks up to a more powerful generator.
Looking at these two generators and comparing their power ratings will reveal that there is a miniscule difference in power.
The Wen 56380i edges out the 3500/3000 rating of the Predator with is 3800/3400 watt rating. With only a few hundred watts difference, this may not be a huge deciding factor when it comes to these two generators.
The Predator 3500 is one of the quietest generators on the market at a conservtive 57 dBa which ultimately makes it hard to compete against. However, this WEN generator has the exact same decibel rating of 57 making the noise competition a dead tie.
As far as power outlet selection goes, you can expect them both to offer up a pair of household outlets to make powering common electronics easy. Where the Predator has a 30amp locking outlet, the WEN offers up a 30amp RV ready plug.
You will also find that the WEN offers a usb port and 12V cigarette lighter port as well.
Predator 3500 VS Westinghouse WGen3600V
Last but not least, the Predator 3500 is going to go up against one of the consumer’s favorites, the Westinghouse WGen3600V.
Westinghouse is widely known for their high quality generators that filled with the latest technology.
Let’s see how well it stacks up against the Predator.
Looking at the power ranges of each generator, the clear winner is going to be the Westinghouse. With 4,650 starting watts and 3,600 running watts, it is by far the superior generator when compared to the 3500 starting watts and 3000 running watts of the Predator.
If you are weighing your decision on the noise level, the Predator is going to be a clear winner here. With a super quiet 57 dBa, it is much quieter than the 69dBa of the Westinghouse.
Comparing outlets on these two generators will show that they are pretty similar as they both have 2 household outlets along with a 30 amp twist lock outlet.
The only real difference is going to be a 30 amp RV ready outlet and covered outlet on the Westinghouse.
Online Reviews and Ratings
Before buying a portable generator, you will want to check the customer reviews to see how others are enjoying their purchase.
At the time of this writing, this generator has a 3.3 out of 5 star rating on Amazon (click to read buyer reviews on Amazon).
While most of the reviews were in favor of most of the features, the most popular downfall I was able to find was the quality of the wheels. Many customers felt that the wheels could have been constructed to be a little stronger.
Potential Problems / Known Issues
There are currently no recalls or known issues for the Predator 3500, but I would assume that the wheels are going to be the biggest complaint.
While most generators of this size use larger wheels, the wheels on this generator seem a little small for the size of the generator.
My Opinion: Should you Buy The Predator 3500?
After looking at all of the features, pros, and cons of this generator, the big question still remains – should you buy it?
I would go as far to say this is best used in a residential setting or somewhere with a sturdy level ground as the wheels do not look like they are ready to take an off road route.
I hope that this article has helped you get to know the Predator 3500 a little more and gave you the information needed to make an informed purchasing decision.