Champion 75531i Inverter Portable Generator Review
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Champion Power Equipment is a relatively new brand, compared to brands such as Honda which has been in the business since the 1930s, having been established recently in 2003.
However, this should not put you off. The Champion brand has expanded rapidly and has become one of the major manufacturers of high-quality portable generators in the US in particular and North American markets in general.
It produces a number of well-received generators with high levels of customer satisfaction. One such generator is the Champion 75531i, 3100-watt inverter generator which has received high reviews from customers.
It is a convenient and compact inverter generator which supplies a running power of 2800W and surge power of 3100W at 120V.
This makes it ideal for RVs, camping trips, or to run basic electrical appliances at homes such as laptops, lights, modems/routers, fridges, and even a couple of small power tools.
- Design, Dimensions & Weight
- Power Output / Generation
- Fuel and Noise
- Display & Control Panel
- Startup and Shut down
- Additional Features
- Warranty and Repairs for Champion 75531i
- Care and Maintenance
- Consumer Reviews for Champion 75531i
- Pros and Cons of Champion 75531i
- Recommended accessories
Design, Dimensions & Weight
The Champion 75531i, 3100W inverter generator is a fairly compact and straightforward generator. Its length is 22.4 inches, a width of 17.3 inches, and a height of 18.3 inches.[/wpsm_highlight]
Due to this small size, it only has a fuel capacity of 1.6 gallons or 6 litres which means a shorter time duration of the power supply.
However, the design of this model is extremely convenient. It has two standard wheels on one side of the inverter which enhances its mobility.
It also has two handles on the top which make it easier to lift. The handles, combined with its comparatively lower weight of 82.5 lb, making it extremely portable.
This is quite a low weight, making it one of the three lightest models we have reviewed.
There are no models in the market which are significantly lighter than it, with the weight differences with lighter models being half a pound to 2 pounds. This can be seen from this table:
Table: This model has one of the lowest weights
|Model Name||Weight (Lbs)|
|Briggs & Stratton 30545 P3000||84|
The weight of this model with the fuel tank filled to capacity is between 93 to 94 lbs.
You can have a further look at the model to assess its wheels, handles, and actual size at. This video shows the generator being used in a variety of situations, thus making it ideal for assessing whether this model will fit your usage patterns.
Power Output / Generation
The engine used in the Champion 75531i, 3100W generator is the company’s own 171cc Champion 4-Stroke OHV. This means that you must you an oil appropriate for a 4-stroke engine.
In particular, Champion recommends an SAE 10W-30 type of oil.
Oils with particular specifications can easily be purchased online and most oil cartons have the specification displayed prominently under the brand’s logo on the bottle.
This generator is capable of providing a continuous and steady supply of 2800W of power at 120V. Furthermore, it has a maximum rated power of 3100W which is also its surge power.
This wattage output is definitely on the lower side as far as generators in this range are concerned. In fact, if you look at the comparison table given below, it is one of the lowest running wattages available, tied with 3 other generators.
This means that if you are looking for a generator with a high output then there are more suitable choices on the market which can be determined through this table.
Table: Running wattage
|Model Name||Running Power (W)|
|Westinghouse WGen 3600||3600|
|Briggs & Stratton 30545 P3000||2600|
It also has four power outlets. One 12V DC outlet for automotive batteries, a 120V AC duplex, and a 120V/30A twist-lock outlet.
Since it is an inverter type generator, it has the added bonus of using less fuel than other types of generators, thus increasing its efficiency. This also allows it to provide a stable and steady AC output according to the load required.
Fuel and Noise
The Champion 75531i, 3100W inverter generator runs on unleaded gasoline which must have an octane number greater than 85.[/wpsm_highlight]
All gasoline brands specify the octane number of the product prominently and most commercially available gasoline has a rating of 86 or above so you shouldn’t find it difficult to find the appropriate fuel.
However, this model has a small fuel capacity of 1.6 gallons or 6 liters which means that it can last up to a maximum of 8 hours at 25% of the rated load.
Furthermore, it is not CARB compliant which means it cannot be used in
California as it does not meet the state’s stringent emission laws.
This is a very low fuel volume and when compared with our models, it is actually the second lowest volume along with the Champion 75537i out of the ones we have reviewed.
As such, there are many generators which will last longer peruse because of higher fuel capacities and can be seen in this table:
Table: Fuel capacity
|Model Name||Capacity (lts.)|
|Briggs & Stratton 30545 P3000||5.7|
Noise might become an issue with this model as it has a volume of 58 dB at a distance of 23 feet from it when it is operating. This is about the same noise as one would experience in a restaurant or busy office.
You will, therefore, have to keep this generator at a decent distance otherwise the noise might disturb you or distract you from your tasks. Since this model is also meant for a camping environment, being too close to it can ruin the experience of camping in nature.
This model’s noise level is practically halfway between the two extremes of the 47 dB and 68 dB, which are the minimum and maximum noise levels of the reviewed models.
However, in real terms, there are only two generators reviewed which are quieter than this model and it is definitely one of the quieter one.
This can be ascertained from this table:
Table: Noise levels
|Model Name||Noise (dB)|
|Briggs & Stratton 30545 P3000||58|
Display & Control Panel
The control panel is arranged in an orderly fashion on the front panel and is neatly labeled for clarity.
However, the labeling is in small font size, which means that some may have difficulty in reading the signs, especially older people or people with weak eyesight.
This model also does not have a warning, caution, or security labels on the generator itself which might mean that you will have to consult the manual more often until you have familiarised yourself with it. This might be tedious for some users.
Otherwise, however, it has an ordered layout. A close inspection of the control panel will also reveal that buttons and valves used in the same procedure, such as the start-up or shutting off process, are placed together. This makes it an efficient and well-designed panel.
The panel has the following controls on it :
- Fuel valve knob: this controls the flow of fuel to the engine
- Choke valve: controls the choke valve of the carburetor and hence the air supply into the engine for combustion
- Economy control switch: can be used to minimize fuel consumption and noise during periods of low use
- Grounding terminal: used to ground the generator – you should familiarize yourself with local regulations before grounding your generator
- 12V DC Automotive Outlet
- 120V AC Duplex Outlet
- 120V/30 amps AC Twist-Lock Outlet
- Circuit Breaker Button: it protects the generator against overloading
- Oil warning light: turns on when there is insufficient oil in the engine
- Overload indicator light: turns on when the engine has been overloaded beyond capacity
- Output light: It turns on to indicate normal functioning of the engine and turns off when it is overloaded or switched off
- Engine switch
Startup and Shut down
This generator only has a manual start option, not an electric one. This might make it inconvenient for people unfamiliar with or unused to manual starting.
Before starting the generator, make sure that it is on a flat surface and not in an enclosed place. Also, disconnect any electrical loads from the power receptacles.
Then follow the following steps for starting it :
- Turn the fuel valve to ON.
- Pull the choke lever to the CHOKE position.
- Flip the engine switch on.
- Pull the starter cord slowly. Once you feel resistance pull it sharply.
- As the engine begins to warm up, push the choke lever to the RUN position.
This generator does not have an emergency shut-down procedure as its circuit breaker shuts it down automatically in case of an overload. For regular shut down, first, disconnect all electrical loads from the generator. After that, let it run on no load for a few minutes. This will stabilize its internal temperature.
After this, follow these steps :
- Turn the fuel valve to OFF.
- Let the engine run for a few minutes until it automatically goes off due to fuel insufficiency.
- Turn the engine switch OFF.
- After the generator has cooled down completely, turn the cap of the fuel vent to off position.
This is a relatively straightforward generator. However, it does have three additional features:
No-Flat Wheels: It has durable wheels which do not go flat [/wpsm_highlight]and enhance the mobility and portability of this generator.
Foldable handles: The handles on top of this generator are foldable making it easier to lift this generator while also keeping it compact.
Economy Mode: During periods of low load or usage, the Economy Control Switch can be turned on to reduce the fuel usage and noise of this generator.
Warranty and Repairs for Champion 75531i
The warranty type on this model is a Two Year Limited Warranty.
To avail of this warranty, you must fill and submit the warranty card along with a receipt of purchase to one of Champion Power Equipment’s local retailers. This must be done within 10 days of purchase.
The warranty cannot be availed, however, if the generator has been misused, modified, neglected, or incorrectly connected.
To ensure that this does not happen, you should read the manual carefully and thoroughly to understand the proper usages and procedures of this model.
To register a complaint under this warranty, you must contact Champion Power Equipment either by mail, phone, or email.
Their contact details are as follows :
Toll-Free Phone Number: 1-877-338-0999 (available Monday to Friday between 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM PST)
Email: [email protected]
Following this, Champion Power Equipment might ask you to take your generator to a local outlet for repairs. They will also provide you with a complaint number which should be recorded carefully and provided for future transactions.
Care and Maintenance
Maintenance of any generator is integral to its smooth functioning. Maintenance relates to all parts of a generator, from having proper type and quantity of oil in the engine to changing the air filter for reduced emissions.
The following is the maintenance schedule for the Champion 75531i, 3100W inverter generator:
- Within the first 5 hours: change the oil
- Every 8 hours or daily: check the level of oil in the engine, clean the area around the air intake and muffler
- Every 50 hours or every season: clean air filter and change oil
- Every 100 hours or every season: change oil, clean or adjust the spark plug and valve clearance (should be done only by experienced users or certified dealer), clean the spark arrester and the fuel tank and filter (should be done only by experienced users or certified dealer)
- Every 250 hours: clean combustion chamber (should be done only by experienced users or certified dealer)
- Every 3 years: replace the fuel line
Since the manual divides the maintenance by season, users should remember to do the required checks and appropriate maintenance more often if they are staying in hot or dusty climates.
Consumer Reviews for Champion 75531i
The ratings of this model have been overwhelmingly positive. It has received extremely high ratings in terms of customer satisfaction on websites such as Amazon or Campingworld.
What customers liked about the mode
Economical cost: A considerable number of customers noted that this model costs less than other inverter generators of similar power supply from more established brands.
Value for money: Despite its cheap cost, many reviewers have noted their satisfaction with this model. It fulfils all the functions for which it is advertised and for its price range is an extremely trustworthy generator.
Good Option for Trailers and RVs: Most of the positive reviews noted that this generator was ideal of trailers and RVs and was easily capable of powering refrigerators, microwaves, and ACs.
Reliable manual start-up: Some reviewers have also noted that while they were hesitant due to the manual start procedure of this model, they all found it extremely easy and efficient to use. It does not cause problems and only takes one pull to start the engine up.
Lightweight: A few purchasers have also commended the light weight of this model. It is easy to pick up, with the foldable handles increase the ease of lifting it. For the older user who might not be able to lift it, the wheels also allow for easy mobility.
The negative customer reviews of this model were extremely few and mainly related to damaged shipping and purchases rather than the functioning of the generator. As such, we are unable to draw any definite conclusions on customers’ views on the negatives of this generator.
Pros and Cons of Champion 75531i
We have analysed and listed down key advantages and limitations of Champion 75531i using its manual, specifications, and customer reviews.
Affordable Yet Reliable: Customers have consistently stated that this model is extremely affordable, especially when compared to more well-established brands such as Honda or Yamaha. Yet, this price does not compromise on quality as it is an extremely reliable generator which fulfils customers’ expectations.
Highly Portable: This generator has a light weight of 82.5 lbs. Coupled with the foldable handles, it is extremely easy to lift. It also has wheels which make it easily portable for those who cannot lift it easily.
Easy Manual Start: While manual start ups can be harder for first-time users, customers have consistently commented that this is an extremely easy manual start procedure. It only takes one pull to start and doesn’t get stuck or requires multiple pulls.
Efficient: Despite its small fuel capacity, it is extremely efficient. Many users have noted that they have been able to use it for long periods of time to power their essential electrical appliances.
Sturdy and Durable: It is a sturdy and durable generator with some reviewers noting that they have bought multiples of this model due to how long-lasting it is. It easily lasts past its two-year warranty date.
Area of improvement
Tedious Shut Down Procedure: The shutting down process on this generator takes a long time. It requires the generator to run without a load and then also cool down before the entire process can be completed.
Slightly Noisy: A few reviewers have noted that this generator is quite loud. This is especially problematic during camping trips. While the noise can be minimized by keeping the generator at a considerable distance (23 feet or more), it is on the louder side, especially if one has to remain close to it.
Non-Automatic Economy Mode: The Economy mode which allows for an increase in fuel efficiency and decreases in noise during periods of low use does not turn on automatically and must be manually pressed on. This is especially odd since inverter generators normally have the capability of adjusting the engine usage according to the load.
Minor Problems at Higher Altitudes: At higher altitudes, this generator starts causing minor inconveniences. A few reviewers have noted that the manual start takes longer while a handful of others have commented that certain appliances may not run as smoothly on this generator at higher altitudes.
No hour meter: This does not have an hour meter on it to keep track of hours of usage. This makes it hard to properly time the maintenance.
The manual of this model is not too extensive and as such users have some questions which come up frequently which are included in this section.
Q. Can I attach this generator with another one of this model in parallel to increase power supply?
No, this model cannot be attached in parallel with other generators.
Q. Does this model have an electric start?
No, this model only has a manual start procedure.
Q. Can I use propane for this model?
No, propane cannot be used for this model. Only unleaded gasoline with an octane rating of above 85 and an ethanol content of less than 10% can be used.
Q. Are the handles or the wheels detachable to decrease the height?
The wheels aren’t detachable. However, the handles are foldable or detachable.
Q. How loud is this generator supposed to be?
It is supposed to be around 58 dB at a distance of 23 feet. This means that it should not be used at too close a distance or else it might be too loud.
Q. Can I run an AC or a fridge on this model?
Yes, ACs and fridges can both be used with this generator.
Q. What type of oil needs to be used for this model?
The recommended oil type is a SAE 10W-30 type of oil.
Q. Does it have a remote starter?
No, it does not. It is a manual start generator.
Q. Can this be used in an enclosed space?
No, it should not be used in enclosed spaces due to the risk of carbon monoxide build-up due to emission.
Q. What are the measurements of this unit?
Its length is 22.4 inches, width is 17.3 inches, and height is 18.3 inches.
Q. Does it run well at high altitudes?
At high altitudes, some users have reported inconveniences with the manual start-up which might require more than the usual one pull to get started.
Q. Is there a break-in period for this generator?
Yes, there is an initial break-in period of five hours during which oil must be added and it must be connected to a load. Following this, the oil must be changed and then it is ready for regular use.
Q. What is the weight of this model?
It has a dry weight of 82.5 lbs and weighs between 93 and 94 lbs with a full tank.
Q. What is the fuel tank capacity of this generator?
The fuel tank has a capacity of 6 liters or 1.6 gallons.
Q. How long does this generator run?
It can run for 8 hours at the 25% load according to the product specifications page.
A cover can help save the generator from rough weather. Buy the cover from Champion brand here on Amazon>
Extensions chord, especially for RVs
Get RV extension chord from Amazon here>
You can join two generators using the kit and thus increase the power when needed. Get the parallel kit from Champion brand for the model from Amazon here>
The Champion 75531i, 2800W inverter generator is a reliable and sturdy generator. For its price point, which is lower than more established brands, it has consistently been rated value for money.
Its light-weight and compact size coupled with the handles and wheels make it extremely portable and easy to move around.
It is a good option for you if you require a generator for an RV, trailer, or camping especially at a lower price point.
All in all, however, this is a value for money generator available to people who do not wish to pay the price of similar generators by established brands which cost significantly higher. It is sturdy, mobile, and satisfies expectations and needs which makes it a good fit for its target demographic.