While doing my research, I found out that a lot of people are interested in the Champion 100573. This is a 4000W open frame inverter, i.e. “digital hybrid”. Basically, it has all the benefits of a traditional open-frame generator (like what you’d find on a jobsite) – low cost, ease of maintenance, lots of power. Without any of the negatives like high levels of noise and decreased fuel efficiency. Don’t get me wrong, this is still a noisy machine. It isn’t something you can run all day in a campground. However, it is much quieter than a regular open frame generator. Quiet enough to run in bursts of 1 or 2 hours without causing any noise complaints from your fellow campers. Besides, you can comfortably use one of these at home to run essential appliances overnight if your area has been hit by a storm and you won’t have power for a while.
“The Champion 100573 blends practicality and convenience into one very portable package that anyone can operate. It is powerful enough to start and run a 15,000 BTU RV air conditioner, but can also be quiet when you need it to be. The Eco mode on this generator will cut down on fuel consumption and noise levels if you aren’t powering heavy loads. And its remote start function is something that all generators at this price point should have, it’s simply the most convenient way to start a generator.”
There are several things I absolutely love about this generator. Its pricing, remote start, the fact that it’s an open-frame model with inverter tech which allows Champion to sell it at very competitive prices. Most inverter generators don’t even get up to 4000 watts, and the ones that do cost way more than the Champion 100573. If I were to pick the top 3 reasons you should buy this generator, they would be the following —
Clean Power (and plenty of it):
These days we rely on our laptops and phones to do a lot of our daily work. Pretty much everything is done on a computer – office work, filing taxes, listening to music, watching movies, playing games, etc. And when the power goes down, you rely on a generator to run your laptop or phone. But a conventional generator doesn’t produce “clean” energy. The AC current you get from a regular open-frame has Harmonic Distortion in excess of 20 percent. Harmonic Distortion is the amount of deviation present in the electrical power compared to an ideal sine wave. The power you get from a utility company at the wall is very close to a pure sine wave current. It’s ideal for operating delicate electronics with complicated circuitry and microchips.
But the power generated by a conventional generator isn’t smooth, it isn’t consistent. There are plenty of fluctuations in current which can cause electronics to overheat, and in worst case scenarios even fry the delicate circuits. An inverter takes this haphazard current, rectifies it into DC, and inverts it back into pure sine wave AC power which is clean and safe for phones/ computers. Total Harmonic Distortion must be under 5 percent to safely operate electronic gadgets and computers, and these THD values are only possible on an inverter generator. The Champion 100573 is one of the few inverter generators which offers 3500 running watts of clean power at under 1000 bucks. A competing model from Honda will cost way more.
I believe this is one of those features you don’t truly appreciate until you actually get to experience it. Imagine starting your 4000 watt generator powered by a 224cc engine, using the same amount of effort it takes to turn on a TV. Pretty awesome, right? Every mid-tier generator should have this feature. I know, it’s not commercially viable for companies to install batteries, starter motors, and wireless transceivers on every generator that costs 400 to 700 dollars. But Champion does it very well. There are 2 keys on the remote, one to turn on your generator and another to turn it off. Simplicity at its best.
One thing a lot of people will overlook is the remote shutdown. Yeah, being able to start your generator from inside the home or RV is cool. But you can also turn it off remotely. Imagine being at a campsite with a generator that pumps out around 68 decibels of noise. Clearly you can’t run this for extended periods, people will complain. So what you do, is use it in burst of 30 to 60 minutes to get the fridge cooled up or heat some food in your microwave. Then you switch it off. This entire process is made much simpler with a remote control since you can do it from the comfort of your couch instead of going outside twice every hour. Very convenient, especially if it’s raining or snowing.
A standard feature on every inverter generator, and one that is impossible to implement on a conventional generator. The alternator of an inverter is designed differently from that of a conventional generator. It doesn’t have to spin at a constant 3600rpm to generate 60Hz current. Which means the engine of an inverter generator can slow down or speed up, depending on the load. This allows for decreased noise levels and reduced fuel consumption. Think about all the times you don’t connect a heavy draw appliance to your generator. Maybe you just want to run a few LED lights and charge your phone. With the flip of a switch you can get the Champion 100573 into Eco Mode which significantly lowers noise and increases fuel efficiency. Not just that, but it also decreases mechanical wear and tear in the long term. The generator will automatically switch into full power mode if you connect a heavy draw appliance.
These are my top 3 reasons to purchase a Champion 100573. And remember, this is one of the highest value for money inverter generators you can purchase that isn’t junk. You get a nation wide support network and convenient parts replacement, not to mention a 3 year warranty. The open frame design does make it noisier than closed frame inverter generators. But it also allows Champion to keep the prices low. You trade off 4 to 5 decibels of additional noise for a cheaper generator. And if you’re a handyman with some DIY experience, you can easily rig up a plywood enclosure with some internal foam padding which will bring the noise levels down by almost half.
Open frame does have its advantages over closed frame in areas other than pricing. Maintenance for instance is much easier when everything from the muffler to the carburetor is exposed. You can easily drain the oil on this generator, and changing out the spark arrestor or air filter is a piece of cake. An open frame design also assists with cooling.
The Champion 100573 is capable of home backup, although I feel 4000 watts is not enough for a dedicated home backup unit. Around 6000 to 7000 watts is more like it. Still, 3500 running watts is plenty for mission critical stuff like CPAP machines. You can even power your computer, fridge, and 13.5k BTU air conditioner simultaneously in the RV/ camper. I also recommend the Champion 100573 for DIYers and jobsite use because it comes with a robust wheel system. These are hard plastic wheels instead of the foam filled “never flat” types you find on a lot of other generators. Hard plastic wheels don’t get those little dents in them like the foam filled never flats. Very handy on a jobsite with rough and uneven terrain. And there’s a folding handle on the front which makes transportation even easier.
You get a 30-amp RV outlet on the control panel, along with a parallel connection system so you can hook up two Champion 100573 generators together and run a 50 amp service in your RV. Champion includes battery charging cables in the package which you can power with the 12V automotive outlet. You can use this to jump start a vehicle or charge its battery. Running the generator will automatically charge its 2 volt 7Ah internal battery. And of course, you can start this generator by pulling a recoil starter rope. That comes in handy whenever the battery dies. Most people will use the push button electric start or remote start 99 percent of the time.
When you receive the generator, you’ll have to set it up. It’s very simple. You just need to attach the wheel kit (wheels and handle), and fill the generator with oil and gasoline. Then for the final step, you have to screw in the two battery cables. Champion provides a 12V USB adapter (with 2 ports) and 12V battery charging cables in the box.