Sometimes going camping doesn’t mean packing a backpack and walking off into the wilderness. Sometimes you want to bring everything with you and that literally includes the kitchen sink. For those trips, a generator is a necessity. There are a lot of options out there but one of the most feature packed units is the Champion 3400 watt Inverter Generator with Remote Start. With plenty of power for most all needs, we found this generator to be an excellent choice to power your adventures.
- 192cc Champion 4-Stroke OHV
- 3100 running watts/3400 starting watts
- RV Ready – TT-30R outlet
- 120V AC – 30A & 20A outlets
- 12V DC automotive style outlet
- Up to 7.5 hour run time at 25% load
- 1.6 Gallon Fuel Tank
- 109.6 lbs (full)
- 59 dBA at 23 ft.
- Wireless remote – 80 ft range
- Push button electric
- Easy pull recoil start
- Low oil shut-off sensor
- USDA approved spark arrestor
- Integrated mobility kit
- Built in carrying handles
- Parallel capability (Kit sold separately)
- 50 state compliant (EPA+CARB certified)
The Champion 3400 watt Inverter Generator with Remote Start is fully encased in a nice plastic housing that makes it feel much less like the types of generators you see at work sites and more like a finished piece of consumer grade gear. It also has a nice looking chrome accent that gives it a nice finish.
Weighing around 100 lbs with fuel, this is a heavier unit than its smaller rated counterparts. While it can be lifted by 1 person, a buddy is probably a good idea for putting into a truck. However, there are 2 wheels on one side and a nicely designed flip out handle on the other. This makes moving around on the ground very easy and not a problem for anyone.
Dimensions of the exterior make this about the size of an average cooler and the weight is probably similar also. It slides nicely into the bed of a truck with tons of room to spare and will fit under a tonneau cover, but it will take up most of the back of an SUV.
The front face has a bright yellow background with easy to read and easy to understand black markings so you won’t be quick to forget how it operates or how to troubleshoot an issue.
Out of the box, the Champion 3400 watt Inverter Generator with Remote Start is almost ready to go, but some setup is required.
An easy to access panel on the side will unscrew revealing the internal battery. Attaching the power cables is as easy as attaching a few screws.
Another panel on the back will unscrew revealing the oil fill and dipstick. Using the provided funnel, adding the initial oil was a clean and easy process. After about a 5 hours break in period, Champion recommends an oil change. If you happen to forget to fill with oil or you have an oil leak, an indicator light on the front will illuminate and the unit will not operate to prevent damage.
If you plan on running the generator in a more permanent location like a home during a storm or a cottage, it is recommended to attach a good ground wire to the generator. An easy to use nut is on the front of the generator for hookup, but the nature of a true grounding wire will hinder the portability.
While the first setup is a little time consuming, it is only a one time deal and regular engine maintenance is all that is required during the life of the generator.
Ah, yes. The part about the Champion 3400 watt Inverter Generator with Remote Start we couldn’t wait to test. A wireless remote start is a feature that sets this unit apart from all the others. It is as great as it sounds. Well, even better, really.
Let’s say you are on a nice off-grid camping trip with your trailer. A crisp morning outside, but you are warm in your comfy cabin on wheels and ready for a cup of coffee to get the day started. Most RVs will require you to be plugged in to shore power, or have your generator running to pull 110v power. With a traditional generator, this means you would have to bundle up and head out into the chilly morning air to pull start your coffee maker. But with the Champion Remote Start, just push a button from inside and moments later you are ready to brew without ever setting foot outside.
The wireless remote is advertised to function up to 80 feet away. This is plenty of room to put the generator someplace away to keep it safe and quiet, but close enough to stay in range. The remote also features a stop button so when you are done brewing and have given your batteries a sufficient charge, shut down is as easy as starting.
If you prefer a more hands on approach or your generator is out of range of the remote, there is also a start button right on the unit itself which also makes starting a breeze. If you can push a button, you can fire it up.
For both automatic start options, just make sure the onboard battery is turned on and charged up. The battery will charge while the unit runs and will stay charged for a few weeks on standby, ready to start with the remote. If you plan to leave the generator for a longer span though, you can turn off the battery and also use the provided charge cable that will let you plug the generator into a wall outlet using the included smart charger to keep the starting battery topped off.
Finally, if the onboard battery isn’t up to the task of starting, or you are just a little old fashioned, pull starting is always an option. We never had any issues getting the generator running using more than a single pull and it is not a pull start that will require too much muscle.
For most travel trailers with 30A power service, the Champion 3400 watt Inverter Generator with Remote Start will provide ample power for anything you need to run, including the air conditioner or a microwave. We started our 13.5K BTU air conditioner with ease and Champion advertises it will also handle up to a 15K BTU air conditioner.
On the front of the unit, there is a standard automotive 12v cigarette outlet and in the box is a power adapter to charge 2 USB devices. Also on the front are 2 standard 110v home outlets that can provide up to 20A of total power with push button fuses. Finally there is also the 30A RV Ready outlet which means this is a stand-alone unit that can power most mid-sized RVs and travel trailers.
If you happen to overload a circuit, push button breakers for all circuits are right on the front and easy to reset with a simple press. If a more severe overload is encountered, there is an overload indicator LED that will flash red and cut power to the receptacles to avoid damage to the generator. If this happens, turning off the generator until the light goes off will get you back in business.
If you find that on occasions you will need even more power, a plug and play parallel kit is also available that will allow you to tie two 3400 watt generators together and also provide a full power 50A RV Ready outlet and still have plenty of power left over.
For right around $1,000 the Champion 3400 watt Inverter Generator with Remote Start provides a great value. While top of the line portable generators can cost $1,200 and provide half as much power, you will find that the Champion 3400 Watt Inverter Generator w/ Remote Start might not be as quiet as some other small units, but it definitely has more features. It also has all the power you will need right in a single unit. No messing with parallel cords or trying to estimate how much power you think you will need.
Plus, the remote start is something you won’t find on any other inverter generators. It’s a great addition to an already great value.
So if you are looking for a nice generator to power your RV or meet whatever your power needs are on your next adventure, I would definitely recommend you take a close look at this generator.
- Remote Start
- Plenty of Power
- Attractive Design
- Pretty Heavy
- Not 'Out of the Box' Ready