Inverter Generator Recommendations? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-11-2018, 10:43 AM   #1
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Inverter Generator Recommendations?

Looking for advice on what generator to buy for boondocking, please?

In particular, interested in powering our AC unit on hot summer trips.

Iíve looked at a few YouTube videos on the subject, but figured I couldnít do much better than to tap the practical experience and wisdom of our forum members.
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Old 09-11-2018, 02:40 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike in WIS View Post
Looking for advice on what generator to buy for boondocking, please?

In particular, interested in powering our AC unit on hot summer trips.

Iíve looked at a few YouTube videos on the subject, but figured I couldnít do much better than to tap the practical experience and wisdom of our forum members.
I have a Honda 2000. It is quiet, economical and does everything I've ever needed it for. On the other hand outside of trying it once on a 9600 btu air conditioner, where it barely worked, I haven't used it to power an AC for extended cooling purposes. If you need something to power AC on an extended basis I believe you would need something that is up to the task. I have known people who have used the Honda 3000 for this purpose but I'm not sure how economical this is. The smaller the generator the harder it has to work. The harder it works the more fuel it consumes. Plus, It's against my common sense to pay a thousand or more for a piece of equipment and then run it at top speed for hours on end.
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Old 09-11-2018, 03:10 PM   #3
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my offbrand 2000VA can NOT power the A/C on my escape 21, it makes funky noises, as does the AC so I shut it down ASAP after a few tries.

I've heard suggested that the yamaha 2400 model should work. and of course, a 3000VA honda or yammy or whatever, but those are getting into too heavy for one guy to carry more than a short distance. If I had a 3000, it likely would live permanently in the back of my truck
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Old 09-11-2018, 03:41 PM   #4
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I have heard good things about the Harbor Freight Predator 3500 inverter generator which should run your AC fine and a cost of $770, perhaps less on sale.
https://www.harborfreight.com/3500-w...tor-63584.html
The biggest problem with all generators is infrequent use and bad gas.
Use ethanol free marine gas and a stabilizer and run the thing once a month and most of the inverter generators will give good service.
Of course buy a Honda if you want the best.
I have gotten good service out of my old Predator 2500 so I can't complain.
This generator weighs 100 lbs so I wouldn't call it lightweight

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Old 09-11-2018, 04:59 PM   #5
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Mike, look into the "Easystart" from Mircoair also. It should allow you to get by with a lesser generator than would otherwise be required. But I have no idea what A/C might be on (or in) your Winnie so I can't recommend a generator by capacity. I would think that calling Microair with the specs on your A/C will get you a good recommendation for minimum wattage needed with their device, and then you can decide on brand (Honda), and if you want extra capacity over the minimum needed for the A/C, or for the A/C without the Easystart
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Old 09-11-2018, 07:10 PM   #6
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Aside from there being a wealth of opinions already on the website for those who look, I'm not clear that I know anything about the power requirements for a stick built trailer.
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Old 09-11-2018, 10:05 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Steve L. View Post
Aside from there being a wealth of opinions already on the website for those who look, I'm not clear that I know anything about the power requirements for a stick built trailer.
if they have a 30A power cord, a 3000VA generator should run most everything, if they have a 50A cord, you need a 5000VA generator, but those big ones usually have a built in generator.
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Old 09-11-2018, 11:04 PM   #8
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What is the BTU rating of your A/C ?
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Old 09-12-2018, 07:39 AM   #9
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I was trying, as politely as I'm capable of, to point out that this is a well worn topic. A generator is something we both may use but the background assumptions may be different and that I, personally, would rather not have to wade through stick-built trailer issues on a molded fiberglass RV site. I view this a bit like the camel getting his nose into the tent.

I can find 3 or 4 dedicated forums for towable winnebagos.

I'm still trying to be polite but it is my opinion.
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Old 09-12-2018, 09:37 AM   #10
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My Ryobi RYi 2200 generator runs the Dometic 11,000 BTU AC in my Escape just fine. I'm perfectly okay with turning off the AC whenever I need ac for something else, like coffee maker, microwave, etc.
I did bookmark the easy start board for future reference though. Thanks Gordon

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Old 09-12-2018, 01:30 PM   #11
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Yamaha 2000

We've had a Yamaha 2000w for five years now - no issues and reliable. Quiet. Being an inverter, it idles until put under load; it roars when AC or the wife's hair blower or the microwave is on. then it's not so quiet. It does run the A/C on our Casita SD (I'm guessing here - 13,000BTU? can't be bothered to look it up). We use the Yamaha for minor things at home if the power goes out. It will run or refrig or freezer or lights or TV but not all at once. When you get into more than 2000 watt generators, the heft/ weight/bulk/difficulty of hauling the unit increases mightily.
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Old 09-12-2018, 07:41 PM   #12
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I'll be the broken record here and recommend a Honda - particularly the eu2200i. Superb generator, powers the AC, lightweight, and super quiet.
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Old 09-12-2018, 10:50 PM   #13
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You want one that is strong enough to run an air conditioner but light weight enough to be able to lift in and out of your vehicles. You get to do a lot of lifting your generator in and out of your vehicle on a camping trip. That pretty much narrows it down to the Honda 2200 or a Yamaha 2400 or 2800. Those all weigh 70 pounds or less. The 3000s all weigh upwards of 150 lbs. Some people get two 1000s and run them both wired together. Any of those options are expensive. I had a Yamaha 2400, pretty much wore it out and it wound up catching fire and burning up (in the back of my truck). I next went to a Yamaha 2800. It does not have the plastic housing (that I found can catch fire) so it is a little louder but it is a very good generator. When I buy the next one I believe I will go with the Honda 2200.
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Old 09-12-2018, 11:17 PM   #14
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I have a Honda 2000. It is quiet, economical and does everything I've ever needed it for. On the other hand outside of trying it once on a 9600 btu air conditioner, where it barely worked, I haven't used it to power an AC for extended cooling purposes. If you need something to power AC on an extended basis I believe you would need something that is up to the task. I have known people who have used the Honda 3000 for this purpose but I'm not sure how economical this is. The smaller the generator the harder it has to work. The harder it works the more fuel it consumes. Plus, It's against my common sense to pay a thousand or more for a piece of equipment and then run it at top speed for hours on end.
Install a Micro-Air easy start in your ac like I did. Your 2000 watt Honda inverter will work on the hottest days.
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Old 09-13-2018, 07:39 AM   #15
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What is the BTU rating of your A/C ?


I have a 13500 BTU AC with about 2800 draw on startup and runs at about 1800
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Old 09-13-2018, 08:40 AM   #16
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Install a Micro-Air easy start in your ac like I did. Your 2000 watt Honda inverter will work on the hottest days.


I am intrigued by the Micro-Air Easy Start approach.

Sounds like the cost is in the neighborhood of $275, for one of those.

Since my AC unit runs at 1800, once the compressor moves past the initial startup surge, then Iím wondering if it would be good to get a Honda 2200?
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Old 09-13-2018, 08:49 AM   #17
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The Honda 2200 is rated at 2200W startup and 1800W running, same as my Ryobi. I would not rely on it to run a 1800W AC.
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Old 09-13-2018, 08:51 AM   #18
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The Honda 2200 is rated at 2200W startup and 1800W running, same as my Ryobi. I would not rely on it to run a 1800W AC.
Walt


Thanks, Walt.
I see your point.
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Old 09-13-2018, 09:54 AM   #19
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At this point, I am leaning towards purchasing a Honda EG2800i at $999.99 from Home Depot. It is rated at 2500w (continuous), which gives me a safety margin of 700 watts, when running our AC.
Additionally, I wouldnít need the additional expense of the Soft Start unit at $275, if I were to purchase the 2800w generator.
This particular Honda is big enough, while weighing 66lbs and operating at a noise level from 61 to 69 dbls, which sounds acceptable.
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Old 09-13-2018, 09:58 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike in WIS View Post
At this point, I am leaning towards purchasing a Honda EG2800i at $999.99 from Home Depot. It is rated at 2500w (continuous), which gives me a safety margin of 700 watts, when running our AC.
Additionally, I wouldn’t need the additional expense of the Soft Start unit at $275, if I were to purchase the 2800w generator.
This particular Honda is big enough, while weighing 66lbs and operating at a noise level from 61 to 69 dbls, which sounds acceptable.
For what it's worth Mike, Many folks have run their 13.5K BTU AC with a 2200W generator and the MicroAir EasyStart. In fact, they have run a 15K BTU AC as well. Talk to the folks there and they will provide documentation. With a Honda eu2200i and an EasyStart, you will be able to run the AC, even in Eco mode.

Personally I would not run an open frame generator at a campground. There is quite a difference in noise level between 51-53 dB and 61-69dB. The decibel scale is not flat, but exponential. For example, 50dB is only one fourth as loud as 70dB.

There are other advantages to having an EasyStart besides just being able to run it with a small generator - there is no clunk or thud when the compressor starts, the AC runs a bit quieter, and it helps the unit last longer.
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