This Generac IQ3500 Review is based on noise test, capacity test, runtime test, and overall usage over the period of 6 months. This is a completely unbiased review. We are not sponsored by Generac or any third-party firm.
Quick Review Of Generac IQ3500
Generac IQ3500 Review
Generac IQ3500 is a little box-shaped 3500-watt machine that is known as the quietest inverter generator on the market.
I was asked by Generac to review their Generac IQ3500 back when it launched on my YouTube channel, but due to lack of time, I was unable to review it.
So after a couple of years, I asked them to send me their generator this past February so that I could use it for at least 6 months to gather data for this review.
I have reviewed it before in my 3000-watt generator articles, but that was just a summary. This article will contain the full review after more than 6 months of usage.
So I ended up using Generac IQ3500 for tailgating and other 30-amp applications a couple of times, and for cabin backup power like 14 to 16 times.
I believe Generac is making these generators for quiet camping because it is virtually noiseless. It gives off only 47 decibels of Noise from 20 feet on eco-mode which is not that significant considering how loud gasoline generators can be.
I once tried powering a 3HP air compressor, a circular saw, and a 10” saw simultaneously.
Generac IQ3500 was able to run all of them at once thanks to PowerRush technology that allows the generator to provide 50% more starting watts without dropping the voltage.
Though it was able to handle all power equipment at once, I wouldn’t recommend powering them for more than 5 minutes. I noticed the THD levels rose to 5.5% and the generator was under severe load. I did it only to test its power output.
It is almost identical to Honda EU3000is in design and overall style, but unlike HONDA, it weighs only 109.1 pounds which is a big plus for camper owners. It is more like a solar generator where everything hides inside the frame.
There is a compartment under the control panel where the battery is inserted. The exhaust and spark and spark plug are located on the back.
Generac IQ3500 got foldable handles and a wheel kit to maneuver it around. The control panel is neat and well-laid. It has two 5-20R 20 amp outlets and one L5-30R 30 amp outlet. All the breakers, USB ports, parallel ports, and switches are also located on the control panel.
My opinion of this closed frame style is very high if you know how to maneuver your way around if you want to access any inter part like the AVR.
But, if you are used to opening frame generators, this design may give you some trouble because it takes time to open the frame and locate the things we want to access.
It also the parallel connection capability. I haven’t tried it yet with another Generac IQ3500 but I heard it works like a champ. To give my official thoughts on the parallel connection, I have to rent an IQ3500. I will add the data to this review in a couple of months.
Noise Test of Generac IQ3500 Inverter Generator
So the claim is Generac IQ3500 is about 40% quieter than Honda, so to test that theory, I conducted a noise test of my own.
- From 10 feet away on normal mode, I got an average of 53.8dB, Honda was 58dB.
- From 15 feet, the noise was around 53.3dB, Honda was 56 to 57dB.
- From 20 feet, the noise was around 50.7dB, Honda was around 54.3
As you can see the noise is not exactly 40% less than HONDA EU300is, but it is lower than I expect and Honda generators are supposed to be quieter.
Generac IQ3500 is the clear winner here.
Runtime and Fuel-Efficiency
On a 2.5-gallon tank, it lasted for 14 hours in the first run, and 14.5 hours on the second run at only 25% load.
At 60% load, it was able to run for 8.3 hours in the first run, and 7.8 on the second run when it took the readings after 6 months of use.
The only problem I see is the single fuel. It is fine for most people but I like multiple fuel options in case of an emergency.
If you can carry spare 5 to 6 gallons of gas, you will be tension free on a camping trip.
Additionally, I was able to muster as much as 3025 running watts off of this generator and run the following devices (not all at once).
I was constantly monitoring the sine wave and it didn’t waver from its super impressive position.
Another great feature I loved is the PowerRush technology. It was able to provide 50% extra starting watts without dropping the voltage which is extremely impressive for a gasoline generator.
I also measure THD (total harmonic distortion) and it was below 3% when the load was under 50%. THD increased to 3.7% when the load was above 50% which is also fine.
Who Should Buy Generac IQ3500 Inverter Generator
Based on my tests and usage, Generac IQ3500 is best suited for 30 AMP RVs or travel trailers with 15K BTU air conditioners. It also has the parallel capability to couple two Generac IQ3500s together if your load exceeds 3000 watts.
What I Like
What I don’t
Alex Black is a seasoned electrical engineer with a remarkable 8-year track record specializing in appliances, generators, and transfer switches. With extensive hands-on experience in the field, Alex possesses a deep understanding of electrical systems and their intricate workings. Throughout their career, Alex has consistently demonstrated expertise in designing, troubleshooting, and maintaining various electrical appliances.