Champion Power Equipment 42436 1200 Watt Portable Generator Review

CPE 1200W Portable Generator

CPE 1200W Portable Generator

The Champion Power Equipment 42436 1200 watt portable generator is an example of a quality product at an affordable price. This generator is lightweight and provide you with power at your campsite, Rvs, cabin or even run essential electrical equipment in your home in times of emergencies and power outages. It can deliver 1200 watts of continuous power and is designed for use with one plug for a 10 amp rating of power.

Champion Power Equipment company is a US owned and operated company which specializes in portable generators along with other equipment. It has its manufacturing facilities in China and is committed to the quality of its products and its customer service.

Or CARB Model:

Power Output and Generation

The Champion Power Equipment 42436 1200 watt portable generator is gasoline powered, it has a 80 cc OHV engine with a cast iron sleeve for long life. RPM is 3600 which is typical of this size unit.

The engine comes with a low oil shut-off sensor to help protect the engine. Crankshaft oil is capacity is 0.42 qts. and uses SAE10W-30.

The generator will deliver 1200 watts of electrical power with a surge output of 1500 watt. It is capable of running for 10 hours at 50% capacity. It is very lightweight and weighs in at 56 lbs.

This unit has one 120V duplex outlet with a 10 amp rating. It is likely that you’ll only be operating one appliance or tool with this unit. If you’re trying to use more than one the total amp pull can not exceed 10 amps.

Fuel Type and Noise Levels:

The Champion Power Equipment 42436 generator runs on unleaded gasoline but can also run on gasoline with ethanol of up to 10% and has a fuel tank capacity of 1.4 gallons which lets it run for 10 hours at 50% capacity, which is right in the range of expectations for this amount of power output.

This model reviewed does come with a fuel gauge so you aren’t left guessing about fuel supply.

Noise: Not only is this generator compact and portable but it is quiet as compared to other generators with a noise level of 65 dB at 23 feet away. That’s about normal high level of background noise and you can still talk with other people around.

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Dimensions and Weight

The Champion Power Equipment 42436 generator is 17.7L x 14.8H x14.0W inches. The size of an ice cooler and for its size it weighs in at only 56 lbs making it very light weight. And in line with some of the higher priced units around.Add the gas and you’ll add another 8 to 9 lbs.

This makes it easily movable with a couple of folks, put manageable for one strong person to make reasonable relocation.

Typical Uses and Needs

The 42436 generator is designed to put out 1200 watts of power, so it is a small generator for tailgating and minor tool usage. Don’t be thinking it’s capable of running your whole household.

For its size it is very light and is an ideal generator to have on hand for those camping trips where it can supply you with power for lighting or operating a couple of small appliances.

With a fuel tank capacity of 1.4 gallons which can keep it running for 10 hours at 50% capacity it can be a very useful piece of equipment for your RV or for that cabin in the woods or any place that you need a little bit of power where there is no electricity available.

It can even run a power tool or two, so you can even use it at a job site where you do not need to run a lot of equipment. Just remember you’re restricted to a 10 amp pull which is good for your smaller tools.

It can also be used on rotational basis to keep the essential equipment running in your home in times of emergencies making it a great all round little power generator.

Display & Control Panel, Start-up

CPE 1200w control panel

CPE 1200w control panel

The Champion Power equipment 42436 generator has a very simple and easy to follow display on its control panel.

At the very left it has the engine ON/Off switch which you use to run or switch off the engine. To the right of this switch you have the intelligauge for volt meter which tells you the exact amount of voltage that the generator is putting out, frequency for hertz and operating hours..

To the right of this meter is a 120 volt outlet and next to this is a 10 amp circuit breaker for the 120 volt outlet. To the right of this circuit breaker and slightly below you have a bolt which is the grounding terminal.


The Champion Power Equipment 42436 generator uses a recoil (pull rope) system to start the engine. Here are the steps required to start this generator.

  1. Make sure that the generator is placed on a flat level surface and that there is no loads connected to the generator.
  2. Turn the fuel valve to the ON position.
  3. Turn the engine switch to the On position.
  4. Move the choke lever to the Choke position.
  5. Pull the starter cord till you feel some resistance, then pull it sharply.
  6. As soon as the engine starts up, move the choke to the Run position.
  7. If the engine does not start on the first pull, move the choke lever to the Run position for the next three pulls of the starter rope.
  8. If the engine starts but does not run, make sure that the generator is on a level surface. The engines low oil sensor will prevent the engine from running if the oil level falls below a certain level.
  9. Let the engine warm up before you connect any loads to it.

Shut down

  1. Turn Off and unplug all electrical loads.
  2. Let the generator run for a few minutes without any electrical loads.
  3. Turn the engine switch to the Off position.
  4. Turn the fuel valve to the Off position.

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Here are the features of the Champion Power Equipment 42436 1200 watt generator.

  1. Has a running output of 1200 watts and can surge up to 1500 watts.
  2. Built using a tube frame for sturdiness.
  3. Is CARB compliant and is available in all 50 states.
  4. Can run for 10 hours at 50% capacity on a full tank of fuel.
  5. Has an easy pull starter system.
  6. Includes a low oil shut off sensor to protect the engine.
  7. Has a 80 cc engine with a cast iron sleeve for long engine life.
  8. Light weight weighs in at 56 lbs.
  9. quiet running with a noise level of 65 dBs at 23 ft.
  10. Has a spark arrestor which stops sparks from escaping from the exhaust.
  11. Has a volt meter which tells you exactly what the output is.
  12. Has a 2 year limited warranty.

Additionally it comes with an oil funnel and spark plug socket for maintenance.

Care and Maintenance and Use

Assembly of the 4 rubber feet and addition of oil is required. To get the most out of your 42436 generator you will need to do periodic maintenance.

When running the generator see that you do not put excessive loads on it. You will also need to see that you maintain the oil levels and keep the air filter clean. You will also need to service your generator more often if you run it in adverse conditions. Here are the guidelines as suggested by the Champion Power Equipment.

Care and Maintenance

First 5 hours

  1. It is important that you change the engine oil after the first 5 hours of use.

After every 8 hours of use or daily

  1. Check engine oil levels.
  2. Clean around the air intake and muffler.

Every 50 hours

  1. Clean the air filter.
  2. Change the engine oil if operating the generator under heavy loads or in a hot environment.

Every 100 hours

  1. Change engine oil.
  2. Clean adjust spark plug.
  3. Check adjust the valve clearances.
  4. Clean the spark arrestor.
  5. Clean the fuel tank and the fuel filter.

Every 3 years

  1. Replace the fuel line.

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Warranty and Repairs

Champion Power Equipment covers the 42436 generator with a 2 year limited warranty. In order to avail of this warranty you will need to register the warranty with them within 10 days of purchasing the generator.

The warranty covers the original purchaser for replacement of parts if they are found defective due to material or faulty workmanship. In the first year the warranty covers both the parts and the labor and in the second year the warranty covers only the parts.

For industrial or commercial users the warranty covers parts and labor for 90 days after purchase and only parts for 180 days after purchase.

Warranty is covered in there plan language warranty book and requires you to start with their technical service to troubleshoot any issue via phone or e-mail. If transportation is needed, costs are to be borne by the purchaser

The warranty only covers the original purchaser and is not transferable.

Consumer Comments

The Champion Power Equipment 42436 1200 watt generator gets 4.7 stars out of five on its rating on Amazon. All the reviews of this product are positive with 3 and above. Over 75% gave it a 5 star rating.

The people who bought are very happy with its performance. This is what some of them indicated about the CPE1200W generator. “Yes, this generator can run everything that you need, just not at the same time.”

Many indicated how light weight this unit was and appreciated how small in size, even commenting on good looks and calling it pretty darn quiet. Also noting that It is small enough to pick up and move around with just one person. And at this size it will store almost anywhere.”

Generally the users find this a good item for the price and it does what it is supposed to.

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Pros & Cons


  1. Small, lightweight and cheap in price.
  2. Gives out 1200 watts of power continuously and can surge up to 1500 watts.
  3. Runs for 10 hours at 50% capacity on just 1.4 gallons of fuel.
  4. It is very quiet for its size.
  5. Ideal for camping or for use in the outdoors.
  6. Fits in the trunk of a car.
  7. Has a voltmeter telling you its output.
  8. Has a low oil sensor that shuts the engine to protect it.
  9. Has a spark arrestor for safe operations.
  10. Easy to start.
  11. It is CARB compliant and is available in all 50 states.


There aren’t many so here’s the minor ones.

  1. Has only one 120 volt outlet.
  2. No wheel kit for easier transport
  3. No electric start.


The Champion Power Equipment 42436 1200-Watt Portable Generator (CARB Compliant) has a list price of $360.00. You can find this generator for as under $200.00 on Amazon. For a generator that can produce 1200 watts of power and keep the essential equipment in your home running during power outages, this is an extremely cost effective generator which can do the job.


The accessories for this generator include a cover to protect it from dust and moisture when not in use. This cover is from Champion Power Equipment.

Champion Power Equipment No.C90015 Generator Cover for Champion 1200W-1500W Models

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The Champion Power Equipment 42436 1200 watt generator is small and light weight. It can supply 1200 watts of continuous power and surge up to 1500 watts, making it an ideal companion for camping or use in a RV or anywhere outside where you need a little electric power.

It can also be used as a back up power at home in times of emergencies, though it will not be able to run your entire home, it can run the essentials so that you do not have to leave your house.

It’s Small enough to fit in the trunk of a car and light enough to be carried by one person, with 10 hours of running time at 50% capacity makes it ideal to be able to supply power wherever you need it whenever you need it.

It’s well rated by real users and best of all it is a reliable small generator at a price that makes it very affordable.

Similar Generation Units:

The following Generators are similar to the above but at different wattage sizes

 Champion Power Equipment 42431 1,500 Watt 80cc 4-Stroke Gas Powered Portable Generator (CARB Compliant)

1600/2000 Watt Inverter Generator in Yellow

Champion Power Equipment 73536i 2,000 Watt Portable Inverter Generator (CARB Compliant)

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