In this review, we’ll look at the strengths and weaknesses about the Champion brand 3400 watt dual fuel portable generator. We’ll also address issues about the Champion dual fuel generator model 100263 unit that would affect some people’s decision to buy it.
Pros of the Champion Model 100263 Generator
RV dwellers who live off propane will appreciate the alternatives this unit provides. This dual fuel inverter generator runs on both gas and propane. So if you need to save propane to run the fridge, use gas to keep the AC running.
The unit runs up to seven and a half hours on a full gas tank and fourteen hours off of a single twenty pound propane tank. The unit automatically idles when power demand is low to help save fuel.
Champion’s generators are very reliable.
This inverter/generator comes with several RV ready outlets. It has a single 30 amp 120 volt plug, two 120 volt 20 amp plugs suitable for small appliances and 12 volt DC outlets. It produces clean power (without too many fluctuations) that makes it safe for recharging a laptop or cell phone; officially, the total harmonic distortion or THD is less than 3%.
A side benefit of the design is that you can use it to power critical equipment in your home like the refrigerator, a few lights and small electronics. This is one of the few RV generators you can move and use to power a cabin or campsite.
Champion’s generator/inverter is quieter than the average generator. If you are sitting right next to it, it puts out 75 decibels. This is quieter than a dishwasher or a loud TV.
The unit is EPA & CARB/50 State Certified. It is one of the few RV generators that can be sold in California, and that’s a plus for those who want an ecofriendly power generator while living off the grid or camping in the wilderness.
The unit comes fully assembled.
If it does idle and stall, simply push a button to restart it.
Cons of the Champion Model 100263 Generator
It produces 3100 watts continually; the 3400 watts is only produced at the start. Your energy budget thus needs to be for around 3000 watts of power usage, not 3400. You can attach a second champion inverter to this generator to increase the power output, but that is a separate, out of pocket expense. The generator puts out enough steady power to run a small TV, refrigerator and small air conditioner.
You have to hold the generator at a low, awkward angle in order to use the wheels. You can pull it at a more natural angle, but then the generator casing drags on the ground.
This unit does not come with a key fob to start it remotely, a feature that lets you turn it off on demand and save fuel.
The carry handle on the generator is almost a joke. The generator weighs around 100 pounds. You drag it, not carry it. It is so heavy that shipping costs are incredible unless you buy it at the local hardware store.
This dual fuel inverter generator costs around $1100, and it is rarely on sale. It is common to pay more for dual fuel ovens for your home, but in that case, electric versus gas is a nice option to have and rarely worth it. Conversely, RV owners need backup options, such as when they cannot get to a propane dealer and can keep the appliances in their home running off a tank of gas instead.
Champion offers a two to three year limited warranty, depending on where you buy it. The downside is that it may take weeks to get the generator repaired under warranty. The manufacturer promises free lifetime technical support.
The battery on the generator typically causes it to start quickly. The battery must be mostly charged to run it on gasoline; this means you need to start the generator and run it perhaps once a week to keep the battery charged so it will quickly start when you want to power it with gas. Another result of this issue is that the battery will likely be dead on first startup, though it will charge after the unit runs for a while. The generator comes with a manual pull as a backup.
Sometimes the generator is shipped missing items like propane regulators or power cords, but the manufacturer sends replacements almost as soon as they are notified.
This eco-friendly dual fuel power generator will run multiple small appliances or at least one big one while supplying your lights and recharging your phone. Its relatively high price and bulk are offset by excellent power quality, reliability and the flexibility of charging your home or powering your cabin when there isn’t power from the grid. The manufacturer offers decent service, but the warranty depends on who you buy it from.