How good is the Westinghouse WGen3600DF? Well read our review and you’ll find out. Hint : It’s really good and worth your hard-earned money.
Many people have come to realize the benefits of owning a dual-fuel portable generator. If you’re looking for one of the best at a very affordable price, the Westinghouse WGen3600DF dual-fuel generator is bound to blow you away.
Intro | Westinghouse WGen3600DF
Westinghouse builds tough generators, that’s for sure. They’re also reliable and, best of all, they don’t cost nearly as much as one would expect. They’re downright cheap for the exceptional quality that they offer. This is why we’ve reviewed so many of their products. This time it’s the turn of the amazing Westinghouse WGen3600DF to receive a comprehensive review.
The closest competitor to this portable generator has to be the Champion Power Equipment 76533. This is also a dual-fuel generator with a bit more power than the Westinghouse WGen3600DF. The power difference is only about 200-watts and the Champion Power generator is quite a bit more expensive than the Westinghouse model, so you’ll be paying for these extra few watts.
Which is the better generator between the Westinghouse WGen3600DF and the Champion Power Equipment 76533?
That’s a tough call, they’re both great generators. The price of the Westinghouse WGen3600DF will certainly make it very attractive to most people. Why not take the time to read this review and decide for yourself which of these two dual-fuel generators will be the best for you?
Best Dual Fuel Portable Generator
- Features one 5-20R 120V household Duplex receptacle, one rv-ready TT-30R 30 amp receptacle, and one L5-30R 30 amp receptacle; all outlets have rubber covers for added safety
3600 running watts and 4650 peak watts; recoil start; 4 gallon fuel tank with fuel gauge; 12 hour run time at 50% load
- Plug-and-play: comes with oil, an oil funnel, a tool kit, and a user’s Manual to get you started right out of the box (minimal assembly required)
- Powered by a 212 cc Westinghouse 4-stroke OHV engine featuring a long-lasting cast iron sleeve with automatic low oil shutdown
- EPA, CARB, and CSA compliant; backed by a 3-year limited Warranty; nationwide customer service and support network at 1-855-944-3571
A lot has been said about the Westinghouse brand and all of it good. This is a big reason why I would recommend any of their products. The Westinghouse Electric Company has, for more than a century, been on the cutting edge of electric and electronic developments. They have always been, and still remain, one of the most innovative electric companies in the world. What I like most about Westinghouse portable generators is the outstanding level of quality that you get. When you look at what you’re paying for any of their generators, it comes as a very pleasant surprise. I don’t think it’s possible to match the price vs quality that you’ll get when you buy a Westinghouse generator. Well, that’s my opinion and I’m sure many agree.
So if you’re interested in the Westinghouse WGen3600DF, you certainly won’t be disappointed by what you’ll be getting for your money. The Westinghouse WGen3600DF pushes out 3600W of constant running power and has a peak (surge or starting) wattage of 4650W. That’s if you’re running the generator on gas. When using propane, any generator will deliver a lower current. In the case of the Westinghouse WGen3600DF, you’ll get 3240 running watts and a peak power of 4180W when using propane. That’s one of the disadvantages of using propane. However, the advantages to using propane far outweigh the slight loss in output power.
So you might be getting fewer watts when using propane, but you’re going to get a lot more running time from a 20 LBS propane tank than you will from the 4-gallon gas tank of the Westinghouse WGen3600DF. Not that the fuel consumption when running on gas is anything to scoff at. The Westinghouse WGen 3600DF will run for 12-hours at 50% load on a full tank of gas. That’s quite remarkable if you consider that it’s powered by 212cc engine. At 50% load, the WGen3600DF is delivering 1800W – so that’s a lot of power for 12-hours from only 4-gallons of gas (5.4 kilowatt-hours per gallon of gas). I don’t have verified specs for the running time on propane, but I would estimate that you should get up to about 20-hours from a 20 LB propane tank at 50% load.
I want to discuss the Westinghouse 212cc, four-stroke engine that’s used in this generator in some detail. This is because it’s one of the biggest reasons why this is such a great machine. We’ve already seen by the runtime, that this is an incredibly fuel efficient engine. Often this means that the engine is not as durable as the old-fashioned gas-guzzlers. In this case, that’s definitely not true. The Westinghouse 212cc, four-stroke engine with over-head valves and cast iron sleeves is one of the most robust that you’ll find on a portable generator.
Like most modern engines, it features a low oil shutoff to protect the engine and it should give you many decades of reliable service. This engine is certified for the strictest emission standards. It’s EPA, CARB, and CSA certified. It also has the convenience of an electric starter as well as the dependability of a recoil starter. If the generator has been standing for too long and the battery runs flat, you can do things old way and start it with a tug on the recoil starter. Fortunately, this is a very easy generator to get going and even when using the recoil starter, it’s not going to be a tough job to get it going.
The Westinghouse WGen3600DF is quite a heavy machine, weighing 109 LBS. Much of this weight can be attributed to the solid steel frame that houses the generator. Not only is this very durable and offers perfect protection for the engine and alternator – it also wraps around the top of the machine. The frame has two bars across the top, running along the length of the generator, ensuring that the fuel tank can’t be dented when transporting it.
The Westinghouse WGen WGen3600DF will withstand a lot of rough treatment without sustaining damage. These bars also offer a great gripping point when lifting the generator. It has a wheel kit with large wheels to make transporting the generator much easier. It also has one of coolest fold down handles that you’ll get on a portable generator. Instead of having two handles attached to the frame, it has a loop bar handle with a very comfortable soft grip. This gives you a much better gripping position to push or pull the generator more easily. The frame has rubber feet at the bottom for standing the generator, eliminating a lot of the vibration and noise. It also has a four-point mounting system for increased durability and even less vibration.
The Westinghouse WGen3600DF is remarkably easy to use and set up. It comes almost completely assembled in the box. You really need only attach the wheel kit – which is very easily done. Then, after filling it with gas and oil, you’re ready to get going. You get just the right amount of oil to fill the engine as well as a funnel and toolkit with the generator. This means you have everything that you’ll need to assemble the generator and get it going. It starts first time, whether you’re using the electric starter or the recoil starter.
The control panel is laid out for perfect ease of use and versatility. It has one 5-20R 120V duplex standard household power outlet – giving you two outlets for use with a standard extension cord. It also has a TT-30 30A (RV ready) outlet and an L5-30R 30A outlet. This covers every type of AC power outlet that you could possibly need. It also has a 12V battery charging port. All the AC power outlets have rubber covers and there are circuit breakers for the both the 20A and 30A circuits. A large dial makes it simple to change between gas and propane fuel inputs. There really couldn’t be a simpler generator to use.
I can’t think of anything bad to say about the Westinghouse WGen3600DF. It’s an extremely durable machine at an irresistible price. With 3600W of running power, it’s an affordable option for backing your home in an emergency with enough power to run most of your appliances simultaneously and enough peak power to enable your refrigerator to start up without unplugging all your other essentials. Westinghouse is renowned for their excellent customer service and you get a great 3-year warranty on the WGen3600DF.
Learn more about Westinghouse and their wonderful line of generators and ongoing commitment to engineering innovative technology to power their portable generators.
- Dual Fuel : Operate your 3800-watt portable generator right out of the box on either gasoline or propane, plus the unit holds 0.6-quarts of oil (included) and has a low oil shut-off sensor
- Power up the 224cc Champion engine with the handy toggle switch, battery included
- Intelligauge : Keep track of voltage, hertz and run-time hours to easily monitor power output and track maintenance intervals
- Outlets : One 120V 30A RV outlet (TT-30R), one 120V 30A locking outlet (L5-30R) and two 120V 20A household outlets (5-20R) – trust Volt Guard™ built-in surge protector to prevent overloads
Champion Power Equipment is another brand that has a reputation for affordable quality. This makes the Champion Power 76533 a perfect portable generator to compare with the Westinghouse WGen3600DF. The advantage with this generator lies in the extra power that it provides – 3800W (31.7A) running power and 4750 (39.6A) peak watts when running on gas and 3420 running watts (28.5A) and 4275 peak watts (35.6A) when running on propane. Though these few extra watts come at a higher price. If you look at your price per watt, the Westinghouse WGen3600DF is the better deal. Though this price difference isn’t too big when one looks at their power output vs price. I wouldn’t suggest that you base your decision purely on the purchase price.
Okay, so your initial purchase price makes the Westinghouse WGen3600DF only slightly more favorable than the Champion Power 76533. Though, what about running costs? This is where the spendthrift consumer may well decide that the Westinghouse WGen3600DF is the best option.
The Champion Power 76533 makes use of a 224cc, four-stroke engine. This is also a very durable engine and is only 12cc bigger than the engine in the Westinghouse WGen3600DF. Though the fuel consumption of the Westinghouse is slightly better. The Champion Power 76533 has a 3.4-gallon gas tank and this will give you 9-hours of runtime on a tank of gas at 50% load (10.5-hours using propane at the same load). At 50% load, the Champion Power 76533 pushes out 1900W. This works out to 5.3 kilowatt hours per gallon compared to 5.4 kilowatt hours per gallon of gas for the Westinghouse WGen3600DF. While this looks like an insignificant difference, the gas savings when using the Westinghouse will amount to quite a lot over the years. The fact that the Westinghouse has a larger gas tank with a lower fuel consumption also gives it a bit of an advantage. The difference between 12-hours on a tank of gas vs 9-hours does sway in favor of the Westinghouse.
The control panel on the Champion Power Equipment 76533 may well be more impressive to some of you – especially if you like to know what your generator is doing. This is because of the IntelliGauge LED display that toggles between various options – giving you the output power in volts as well as displaying the frequency and the running hours. The Westinghouse WGen3600DF doesn’t have any gauges. The Champion Power model has exactly the same AC power outlets as the Westinghouse – 2 X 50-20R 120V 20A outlets, a TT-30 30A (RV ready) outlet, and an L5-30R 30A outlet. These circuits are protected by overload circuit breakers.
It doesn’t have the convenience of a 12V battery charging outlet and the power receptacles aren’t protected by rubber covers. This is a minor thing but it’s something I really like on the Westinghouse WGen3600DF. The Champion Power 76533 has pretty impressive noise levels for an open frame 3800W generator – 68dBA from 23-feet away. I don’t have noise specs for the Westinghouse WGen3600DF, so I can’t make an accurate comparison. The Westinghouse isn’t, by any means a noisy generator, but I’m not sure that it can beat the Champion Power 76533 in this department. It would come pretty close though. Then again, both generators come close to one another when it comes to specs. The Westinghouse WGen3600DF has a slight lead with most of these – with the exception of output wattage and possibly noise levels.
The Champion Power 76533 is slightly heavier than the Westinghouse WGen3600DF at 119 LBS. Then again, it is a bit more powerful with a few extra CC’s on the engine, so this weight difference is in line with the additional power. Though the frame on Champion Power model isn’t as thick as that on the Westinghouse and it doesn’t protect the fuel tank. It has solid 8” wheels and the frame offers gripping positions that can be seen as handles. Again, I think the handle on the Westinghouse gives it a bit of an advantage when it comes to portability. The Champion Power generator also makes use of both a recoil starter and an electric one, so here they are on a par. The Champion Power 76533 is also EPA and CARB compliant – it’s just as much an environmentally friendly generator and can be sold in all 50 states.
There’s no disputing that Champion Power Equipment manufactures top quality generators and the 76533 model is no exception. It has a great power output for a portable generator and comes with a 2-year warranty and excellent technical support.
As I said at the beginning of the article, it’s not easy to say which of these two is the better generator. The Champion Power Equipment 76533 has more watts, though this is less than 10%. The Westinghouse WGen3600DF is cheaper to buy and uses slightly less fuel, making it the more affordable generator.
After reading the reviews of both generators, you’d have seen that all their specs come very close. As far brands go, who can say which is better? Quality is something they both have in common. The frame on the Westinghouse WGen3600DF is probably better and this gives it a few extra points in the durability department.
Apart from the extra power, the Champion Power 76533 has the IntelliGauge. Though I wouldn’t consider this to be a deal breaker. After all, how many of us constantly watch the voltage and frequency of our generators? Though it is important to check this periodically to know that the alternator is working properly, you could just as easily hook the generator up to a multimeter from time to time and check that it’s doing what it should. The hour meter is nice to check on service intervals. Even then, how many people actually service their generators according to its running hours? For most home users, the generator comes out once or twice a year. If you’re using your generator to power your RV, you’ll probably service it before you go on vacation. If you mostly use it to back up your home, you’ll service the generator before the hurricane season or winter, depending on when you’re most likely to experience a power outage. Contractors who use a generator more regularly can certainly benefit from an hour meter because they’ll be servicing their generator more often.
When it comes down to making a decision between the two, I think that we’ll end up with a hung jury. Half will prefer the extra power of the Champion Power 76533 and the other half will favor the economy of the Westinghouse WGen3600DF. I think that these would be the main considerations. The other differences are quite minor. Noise levels are undecided but are probably too close to make any significant difference. The other smaller differences seem to weigh in favor of the Westinghouse. These would be minor things like the rubber covers on the electrical outlets, a 12V battery charging port and the better handle – making it easier to transport.
Looking for more options, read our reviews of the Best dual fuel generators for a few more options.