Open frame generators are mostly used for work, but WEN promotes their GN400i as a great choice for powering RVs and travel trailers. Which purpose is it best suited for? Is it worth making the trade off between higher noise and lower weight to get an open frame generator instead of an enclosed unit?
Power and Connections
Emissions: EPA and CARB compliant, includes USDA-approved spark arrester
The GN400i makes up to 3,500 watts of 120 volt power, with a surge capacity of 4,000 watts to handle reactive loads from electric motors.
For RV shore power, the GN400i has a built-in TT-30R socket. This generator is parallel capable, and it can be linked to any of WEN’s inverter generators. The parallel kit has built-in TT-30R and L5-30R outlets, making it easy to access the full power of these generators from one socket. This kit has a 6,000 watt limit, so there’s not much point in pairing this generator with one of WEN’s larger models.
For powering household devices directly, there’s a 5-20R duplex outlet with two sockets. This generator also has a pair of USB ports for charging mobile devices. One outlet delivers 2.1 amps for fast charging, while the other outlet delivers just one amp.
The 400i has a 212cc engine that shuts down automatically if it runs low on oil or fuel. Flipping the on/off switch cuts the flow of fuel to the engine. This burns off the remaining fuel inside the carburetor, so you won’t have clogged jets when you pull this generator out of storage. The control panel houses the choke lever, as well as lights indicating low oil, overloads, and active loads. Turn on Eco mode, and the generator will adjust the engine speed automatically to match the current load, conserving fuel. The 1.85 gallon fuel tank can keep this generator running for up to 7 hours at 50% load.
WEN covers the entire generator, including the engine, for two years or 500 hours of personal use. Commercial users are covered for 90 days with no hour limit. The company has a massive dealer network, so you’ll never be far from a service center.
If the noise won’t annoy you or your neighbors, the WEN GN400i is a solid choice for RV power. It has the features you need for shore power, and it’s easier to move around than an enclosed generator. The GN400i is also a good choice for tools and batteries, although you may want something with better weather protection.