The Best Remote Start Generator: Outdoor RV Power at Your Fingertips

Best Remote Start Generator
The remote start generator is a really cool refinement of what is arguably the ultimate RV accessory. No matter what your particular flavor of choice is in RV types, one thing is always certain. The absolute prime camping spots anywhere, anytime, are off the beaten track — and you know what that means!

Yep, you guessed right, no ready access to power. And while that secret campsite sure is one in a million, it is all the more so with power.

Of course, being able to kick your main’s power in without going out in the dark or rain is just icing on the cake — enter the remote start generator.

A remote start generator allows you to instantly get power on your RV grid from across the campsite or the comfort of your bed. No more forays into icy, wet weather or stumbling around in the dark to start your generator — a simple push of the button and you’re connected!

Now, I guess by now you’re almost certainly sold on the idea of a remote start generator. However, you’re probably a bit overwhelmed by the prospect of sifting through all the possible choices, and rightly so.

There are so many factors to consider, and so many products available, a little help in making the choice would certainly be welcome.

What Defines a Great Remote Start Generator

First of all, there’s a whole lot more to consider when it comes to choosing a remote start generator than the color of the key fob. To make the process a little easier, here are the most important considerations when choosing a remote start generator.

Electric start

We were hesitant to include this point as it seems to be a gross overstatement of the obvious. However, it is a question that comes up an awful lot, so we’ll kick off with it.

If you’re looking for remote start functionality in a generator, your choice will have to be an electric start model. In other words, recoil, or pull-start, models cannot be started remotely out of the box and are expensive to retro-fitted with a remote start kit.

Power output capacity

All the great features in the world won’t mean much if your generator isn’t able to supply enough power. So, you can estimate or simply buy the biggest model available, but a scientific approach is definitely the best practice.

In case you can’t calculate your needs yourself, there are some really great load calculators and informational blogs out there to simplify the process.

Generator power output is measured in watts with the typical range being between 1,800 watts and 10,000 watts. In most cases, a generator will feature two power output figures, namely running and surge ratings.

The running rating is the amount of power the unit can produce constantly. The surge rating is the higher number and indicates the maximum load the generator can manage for short periods. That’s important because most appliances draw a lot of power for a short time when they’re started.

When choosing your generator, remember it’s better to go bigger than you require to cover future increases in demand.

Inverter or standard generator types

The majority of folks will tap sensitive electronic equipment such as cell phones or laptops into their outdoor power grid. Consequently, having a generator that produces really clean, stable power is a winner.

Conventional generators produce alternating current, or AC, outputs that show constant voltage fluctuations. Now, these fluctuations are slight and won’t do power tools or heavy equipment any harm.

However, more sophisticated electronic devices and appliances require a more stable, or clean, source of power.

Inverter generator power is almost as clean as your mains grid at home, which is great for sensitive devices. In addition, they are typically more fuel-efficient, lighter, and quieter than conventional types. The only downside to them is their increased cost and generally lower power outputs.

Noise levels

Let’s face it, camping out is generally about peace and quiet. A generator that sounds like a jet fighter at full afterburn isn’t going to win you any fans no matter how effective it is.

Number and types of power outlets

When you get to choose your generator, make sure it has enough of the right type of suitably rated outlet sockets. Again, having a clear idea of your grid requirements before setting out to buy is always a good thing.

If you’re going to run extension cables, twist-lock sockets are great for preventing accidental disconnection if someone trips over a cable.

Earth leakage and overload circuit breaker

A safety cut-out breaker is a must to protect your family and equipment from overloads and short circuits. If your generator doesn’t have one, then fit one as soon as possible.

Run time

It’s a good idea to choose a generator that has a run time of around 10 hours on half load. That will prevent you from having to get up to refill in the middle of the night.

Our Review Criteria

To make our review fair and informative, we compared each of the review products according to the following criteria.

  • General overview
  • Surge and running power output
  • Fuel type
  • Inverter or conventional operation
  • Power outlet configuration
  • Parallel connection capacity
  • Run time (if available)
  • Special features (if applicable)
  • Warranty details
  • Customer review results
  • Pros and cons

All of the technical specifications quoted in the review are manufacturer listings. We used customer reviews from RV and outdoor forums and interest groups, Amazon, as well as manufacturer site feedback.

Our pros and cons sections are based on those reviews and industry-accepted standards for portable generators.

Without any further chit-chat, let’s get to it.

Our Lineup

The lineup for our best remote start generator showdown lists all of our contenders in no particular order.

Pulsar 4,000W Portable Gas-Powered Quiet Inverter Generator with Remote Start

Based in Ontario, California, Pulsar Products offers a large selection of outstanding portable generator products. The PG4000iSR is one of their remote start generators and should make an ideal choice for outdoor power generation.

To begin with, let’s look at the numbers.

  • Power output: 4,000 watts peak, 3,500 watts running power
  • Fuel type: gasoline — 3.5-gallon tank
  • Inverter or conventional operation: inverter
  • Outlets: 120V, 20 Amp Duplex, 120V, 30 Amp RV ready, 12V DC eight Amp, and an integrated USB outlet.
  • Parallel connectivity: parallel
  • Run time: 15 hours at 50 percent load
  • Special features: never-flat wheels. 63 decibel sound signature, telescopic trolley handle.
  • Certification: CARB, EPA, & CSA
  • Warranty: one year limited


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Pros and cons

There are goods and bads to everything. Here’s where we break it down.

Pros:
  • Good power output for its size
  • Acceptable sound signature
  • Good power outlet configuration
  • Very good run time and fuel efficiency
  • Inverter design and parallel connectivity
  • Quick recovery with increases in demand
Cons:
  • No built-in safety cut out
  • Short warranty

Westinghouse WGen7500

Westinghouse is an established and trusted name in the generator game. The PG4000iSR is a mid-range sibling in the WGen family and a staple in many campers equipment line-ups. That’s what this generator has to offer.

  • Power output: 9,500 watts peak, 7,500 watts running power
  • Fuel type: gasoline — 6.6 gallon tank
  • Inverter or conventional operation: conventional
  • Outlets: two 120V, 20 Amp Duplex outlets, 120V, 30 Amp L14-30R transfer ready outlet
  • Parallel connectivity: none
  • Run time: 16 hours at 50 percent load
  • Special features: GFCI short circuit protection, 110-yard remote range, spark arrestor, LCD VFT status readout
  • Certification: CARB, EPA & CSA


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Pros and cons

Not everything is 100 percent perfect. They have their ups and downs.

Pros:
  • Very good power output
  • Outstanding run time
  • Excellent safety features
  • Spark arrestor
  • VCT readout functionality
Cons:
  • A bit heavy at 192 pounds dry weight
  • Louder than other generators, albeit marginally so
  • Non-inverter configuration

Champion 3500-Watt RV Ready Portable Generator with Wireless Remote Start

Champion is another well-known manufacturer of portable generators and features a wide range of models.

This generator is a brand new addition to their lineup and is a direct replacement for the evergreen 46539 3,500 Watt model. How does this remote start generator stack up?

  • Power output: 4,375 watts peak, 3,500 watts running power
  • Fuel type: gasoline — 4.7-gallon tank
  • Inverter or conventional operation: conventional
  • Outlets: 120V, 30 Amp NEMA L5-30R locking outlet, 120V, 30 Amp NEMA TT-30R outlet, two 120V, 20 Amp NEMA 5-20R outlets
  • Parallel connectivity: none
  • Run time: not stated but estimated at approximately 10 hours
  • Special features: over-voltage protection, LCD Intelligauge voltage, frequency, and run-time gauge, cold-start technology
  • Certification: CARB, EPA & CSA
  • Warranty: three-year limited, lifetime technical support


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Pros and cons

Here are this generator’s good points and not so good points.

Pros:
  • Good power output
  • Cold start technology
  • Quiet operation
  • Built-in surge protection
  • “Intelligauge” diagnostic display
Cons:
  • Non-inverter configuration
  • No earth fault protection

Westinghouse WGen9500

Another member of the outstanding Westinghouse generator family, the WGen 9500 is a true powerhouse. With its high power output and excellent feature set, this is certainly one of the best choices of remote start generator for high demand applications, either in your RV or at home.

To begin with, let’s look at its pedigree.

  • Power output: 12,500 watts peak, 9,500 watts running power
  • Fuel type: gasoline — 6.6 gallon tank
  • Inverter or conventional operation: conventional
  • Outlets: two 120V, 20 Amp 5-20R Duplex outlets, 120/240V 50 Amp L4-50R outlet, 120/240V 30 Amp L14-30R outlet
  • Parallel connectivity: none
  • Run time: 12 hours at 50 percent load or 17.5 hours at 25 percent
  • Special features: Automatic low oil cut-out, overload protection, 110-yard remote range
  • Certification: CARB, EPA & CSA
  • Warranty: three-year limited and lifetime technical support


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Pros and cons

It’s always good to weigh the pros and cons before making a decision.

Pros:
  • Very good power output
  • Good outlet selection
  • Overload and low oil protection
  • Good warranty
  • Good run time
  • Spark arrestor
Cons:
  • A little heavy at 200 pounds
  • Sound signature higher than average at 73 decibels

Firman P03608 3650 Remote CARB

Our second Firman remote start generator is a little brother to the high output P08003 model. Although it delivers lower output figures, the P03608 is still a force to be reckoned with and also sports an impressive feature set. So, let’s check it out.

  • Power output: 4,550 watts peak, 3,650 watts running power
  • Fuel Type: gasoline — five-gallon tank
  • Inverter or conventional operation: conventional
  • Outlets: 120V, 30 Amp TT-30R (RV Ready), L5-30R 120V – 30A Twistlock, two 120V, 20 Amp 5-20R Duplex
  • Parallel connectivity: none
  • Run time: 14 hours at 50 percent load
  • Special features: USDA FS Certified Spark Arrester, Volt Lock Automatic Voltage Regulator, Power Stream Alternator, VFT status readout, 168-foot remote range
  • Certification: CARB and EPA
  • Warranty: three-year limited


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Pros and cons

Here are some points to consider.

Pros:
  • Good power output figures
  • Low sound signature
  • Excellent run time
  • good outlet configuration
  • USDA FS certified spark arrester
Cons:
  • No 12V DC connections

The Best Remote Start Generator Summary

Portable generators are an integral part of most folk’s RV experiences. Of course, having the flexibility and convenience of being able to start your generator remotely is certainly a great enhancement.

Certainly not only from a comfort perspective, but it can also be unsafe to go out in the dark to start your generator. Maybe this doesn’t seem like a big issue, but once you have experienced the convenience, you’ll wonder how you ever did without it.

Without a doubt, our remote start generator list is by no means exhaustive and there are a bunch of really great products out there. However, we hope it’s given insights into what makes a great remote start generator and showcased a representative selection of examples.

Be safe and happy camping.

If you have got any experiences or opinions on remote start generators you’d like to share, please use the comments section below.

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