Generator & AC

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Generator & AC

Postby steve wolverton » Sat Apr 21, 2007 11:12 am

Hey Guys,

Anyone here running a 2,000 watt generator and 5,000btu AC? I'm thinking of buying a generator (Harbor Freight cheap-o) so I can do some off the grid camping. I don't really care how loud it is as the only places I'd use it would have no other people nearby. It has to be able to pull the AC though - that's the main reason for the generator.

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Postby madjack » Sat Apr 21, 2007 11:24 am

Steve, a 2000watt gennie should pull the 5000btu A/C and give ya some chage back...the A/C should pull between 5-6a while running with an eye blink wortha surge at start up doubling that...the 2000W gennie should give ya around 15A worth of power....
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Postby Trackstriper » Sat Apr 21, 2007 1:03 pm

Several months ago I took my 5000 btu Sears AC down to the local RV show where a local Honda dealer had some demos going. My AC is tagged to draw 4.8 amps and I know there is an additional start-up load for the compressor.

So here's what I found. The little Honda EU1000i would pull the AC load fine, even when operating in economy mode where the engine runs at a lower no-load speed and awaits a command for power. Couldn't believe it. The EU2000i handled the load just fine also. Both were about the same as far as loudness. When the compressor kicked in there was just a little blip from the throttle and then the engine on both gernerators just went down to what sounded like little more than a fast idle (I know it's not that slow). These generators really impressed me---but they are spendy. I'll probably buy the EU1000i when I get a trailer put together. I would need to be able to run the AC on job locations without shore power.

Your mileage may vary...check your AC unit with a demo generator to make sure it works. But it's definitely worth checking out.
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Postby bledsoe3 » Sat Apr 21, 2007 1:07 pm

Steve, I think Rocky has a 2K generator and AC.
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Postby steve wolverton » Sat Apr 21, 2007 1:53 pm

madjack - Good to know. I think I may go with the 2000watt and the piece of mind that comes with it.

Trackstriper - That really surprises me that a 1000watt gen could pull that AC. I'd love to have one of those Hondas, unfortunately that's well out of my budget.

bledsoe3 - Now that you mention it, I think he does. I hope he'll chime in.

Thanks guys. :thumbsup:
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Two experiences with the Honda EU2000i

Postby sdtripper2 » Sat Apr 21, 2007 2:01 pm

Two experiences with the Honda EU2000i

First test:
5K A/C test with Honda EU2000i, Tested 19 April 2007
I have the Honda EU2000i and a 5K A/C unit and all is well as long as the cable
isn't too long from the generator to the A/C unit. I found that if the cable
was too long (100' 14 gauge) the circuit would crowbar and the red light would
come on. The current draw must have been too much with the extra long
cable? Having a 50' 12 gauge cable all was fine.

My experience is the same as "Trackstriper", in that the economy mode
runs and when the compressor kicks in the EU2000i jumps to attention for
a short while in a ratcheting uP of the throttle. Settling back down as the
surge subsides to the economy mode. Quiet is this unit ~
***

Second Test :thinking:
13K roof top A/C unit using Honda EU2000i, Tested 15 April 2007

I did a test with my friends RV where he wanted to see if my EU2000i
would handle a 13K roof top A/C unit. All web forum chat and people I know
and asked said NO WAY.
edited 5 July 2007
That test was done in cool temps and passed.
At hot temps the 2K
EU2000 won't pull the 13K unit ~ !


Result = The Honda EU2000i won't pull
the 13K A/C unit when the temps are hot so this is not to be used for a big
AC unit unless in the tandem mode with two EU2000's.
Last edited by sdtripper2 on Thu Jul 05, 2007 5:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby asianflava » Sat Apr 21, 2007 2:29 pm

Yes, I do have a 2000W gen-set and a BTU window shaker. It runs the unit fine, I also tested the worst case scenario by short cycling the airconditioner. It pegged my clamp on meter at around 19A! the generator didn't like it but it kept chugging along.
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Postby Dean in Eureka, CA » Sat Apr 21, 2007 2:44 pm

Steve,
I had to chuckle when you wrote that you weren't worried about how loud it was...
I said the same thing...
The noise did get to me after a while until I bought a Honda 3000.
Anyone wanna buy a loud 1500 Coleman?... Cheap. :lol:
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Postby steve wolverton » Sat Apr 21, 2007 2:55 pm

Dean in Eureka, CA wrote:I had to chuckle when you wrote that you weren't worried about how loud it was...


Is it really worth the extra $ for a generator that is more quiet? I have 20 feet of power cable hooked to my camper, and I could park my car between my camper and the generator. I can't hear kids playing or cars driving by when I have my AC going. Something to think about I guess. :thinking:
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Postby sdtripper2 » Sat Apr 21, 2007 3:08 pm

steve wolverton wrote:
Dean in Eureka, CA wrote:I had to chuckle when you wrote that you weren't worried about how loud it was...


Is it really worth the extra $ for a generator that is more quiet? I have 20 feet of power cable hooked to my camper, and I could park my car between my camper and the generator. I can't hear kids playing or cars driving by when I have my AC going. Something to think about I guess. :thinking:


Steve:

May I suggest a test:

See if you can borrow a generator from a neighbor that isn't a quiet model
and set it beside your trailer. I was amazed at the difference in sound as
compared to my Honda when testing last weekend with a China cheap
$200.00 generator that needed a roll dolly to move around. It was so darn
heavy and LOUD .... I am glad I got the lighter weight Honda. One pull and
she kicks off ready to work for me. Remember your going to schlep this
cheap generator all over creation and prolly burn more TV, gas with the
extra weight of the unit? Even out of economy mode on the Honda it was
quieter than the cheap China made 2K ball bustin generator.

Dean ~ What is your experience with your Honda?
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Postby Arne » Sat Apr 21, 2007 3:13 pm

It would be interesting to try a circular foam wall around a noisy generator... the foam would block the direct noise, and absorb some, and direct the rest upward... It would be easy to roll up and carry.. well, not THAT easy, but doable....
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Postby madjack » Sat Apr 21, 2007 4:08 pm

...a couple of additional thoughts on gennie set...a 2k unit will run a skil saw...a 1k will not...a 2k will run a coffee maker...a 1k will not...a 2k will run a hair dryer or a milk house heater...a 1k will not...KIPOR (direct Honda copy from China) is usually 2-300 bucks cheaper than a Honda...sportsmansguide.com sells a 2000W "camping" generator for 200 bucks, I think this is for sale from HF and other outlets as well......
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Postby Trackstriper » Sat Apr 21, 2007 5:26 pm

Madjack is exactly right that you can't expect a 1000w generator to handle a 1500 or 2000 watt load. I recently sold off a Honda EB6500 that I got a screaming good deal on a couple of years ago. It would run pretty much anything you or I would want to hook up. It did have an idle-back switch that would allow the engine to rest a bit while not under load, but other than that it had one speed....LOUD. It was also heavy and was a pain to move around.

If I were to purchase one good overall generator to last the rest of my lifetime it would be the EU2000i. It's portable, quiet, fuel efficient, high quality construction, high quality AC output, and could run the minimal loads in a house in emergencies with reasonable load management. Having said that, I would still look at the EU1000i for running an AC if that's all you want to do for a teardrop. It's a matter of figuring out what you want the genset for and how much work you are going to ask it to do. If you are building your teardrop (or a house) in the woods, a bigger generator would really come in handy. For a teardrop, though, I'd rather think small and light. The EU2000i is 60% heavier and has a 40% larger footprint than the EU1000i.

The inverter generators have the advantage of being able to run only at the engine speed that's required to keep up with the load. That's one reason they're more quiet and fuel efficient. A standard small generator has got to run at 3600 rpm while under load to give you 60 Hz power. 50 Hz in the States doesn't cut it if you want to run your fridge.

I think you get what you pay for with items like this, but best is not always necessary. I'm living proof of that concept. :)

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Postby Dean in Eureka, CA » Sat Apr 21, 2007 6:12 pm

sdtripper2 wrote:

Dean ~ What is your experience with your Honda?

One of my wiser moves...
Since I'm a contractor, I opted for the 3000.
Yaa it's a bit heavier... Takes a little effort to lift up into the pick up bed, but...
This thing runs every power tool I have... No more fighting with other subs for cord space on commercial jobs.
Drilling anchor holes into concrete for door thresholds used to be a drag because of having to move power cords all over the jobsite... Now I just drive around to each location, plug in the Hilti and go.
The power goes out here on Humboldt Hill quite often... I was using all my larger tools (Table saw, planer and band saw) one day when the power went out. Hooked them up to the 3000 and didn't miss a beat.
As far as camping goes... It's very quiet and have never had other campers complain, but they do often comment about how quiet it is.
What's this one pull stuff??? :shock:
The 3000 has a key start. :R
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Postby asianflava » Sat Apr 21, 2007 9:55 pm

steve wolverton wrote:
Dean in Eureka, CA wrote:I had to chuckle when you wrote that you weren't worried about how loud it was...


Is it really worth the extra $ for a generator that is more quiet? I have 20 feet of power cable hooked to my camper, and I could park my car between my camper and the generator.


Imagine a lawnmower running next to your camper. That about how loud those "contractor" generators are. They are basically a lawnmower engine coupled to a generator.

When it gets really quiet at night, any noise is more noticable. Even a quiet Honda would sound loud.
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