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Old 08-15-2011, 10:04 PM   #1
Maxzd
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Honda 2000 & 15,000 BTU A/C...

Everything I have ever been told or read was these two won't work together.

I am not sure why I finally hooked up my Honda 2000 to try this. I was looking at upgrading to a Honda 3000 just figured I would give it a try. The Honda 2000 fits nicely in my front hatch for storage. The 3000 would have to be in the truck bed full time..

it was 80 degrees fahrenheit, and I am at 200 feet above sea level. Plugged the cord into the Honda started it and turned Eco throttle off. So running at high idle, I went into the trailer turned the thermostat to cool.

Air Conditioner kicked on. It ran for a few minutes and it did trip the fault on the generator. I turned the air off, then the generator. Restarted it and then turned air conditioner back on. I thought for sure it wouldn't fire up the a/c after building pressure. Ran for 20 minutes, I finally shut it off, I am a believer..

Blowing cold air no problem. Did not switch the power converter circuit breaker off on the panel, but I did have the microwave off. So basically the generator was powering everything but light load except a/c..

The generator has been sitting, haven't started it for 6 months. No idle surge, high idle was pretty smooth and constant.

I used it on my old tango trailer for a 13,500 BTU a/c. No problems. I went on the roof to double check the option I had of 15,000 BTU a/c was actually a 13,500 by mistake.. It's a 15,000 BTU air conditioner...

So I camp several times a year at 4,000 feet above sea level. It will be interesting if it works there. Higher elevation should result in less performance.. As for why it works for me when others say no way... I have a friend with same Honda 2000 and he can't run his Coleman 13,500 BTU with it..

Just luck or is there anyone out there with same combo working or any idea as to why I had success?
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Old 08-16-2011, 04:53 AM   #2
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I can run my 13.5K AC on a 15 amp extension cord plugged into the side of my garage. The AC runs, the trailer gets cool. I plugged a VOM into a 120V outlet in the trailer and the voltage read 102VAC. If the Refer or the converter kicks in, the voltage drops below 100. The lowest I read was 95VAC. That voltage is not sufficient to run the AC for an extended time without causing overheating problems and eventually damaging the AC.

I'd suggest you do some checking beyone "it blows cold air" to make sure you're not buying a new AC (or having the motor/compressor replaced) from a low voltage condition.

Additionally, the Honda uses insulated windings in the generator to produce electrical power. As the load increases, electron flow in the windings increases. This produces heat which can eventually break down the insulation on the windings shorting them out. Once shorted, that part of the winding will no longer produce electricity, placing a bigger load on the remaining windings to "keep up". This causes more heat in those windings which creates a "cascade effect" causing more and more damage.

What works for you now, will in all probability not work once you damage the AC or the generator. I'd urge you to be very cautious using this setup, Honda generators aren't cheap to buy and they are even more costly to repair. Same goes for the AC.
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Old 08-16-2011, 06:34 AM   #3
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I can believe it runs the A/C at 80Fand sea level. Where you will likely run into trouble is (a) at higher temps, 90f or above, or (b) higher altitude, even 1000 ft may get you. combine (a) and (b) together and it will likely be a no go. Mine also works great at 80F and sea level. starts and runs in eco mode. 1500ft. Nope, 95f, Nope. won't start the A/C even with Eco mode off and a soft start cap installed and a delay for the fan motor start and everything in the trailer turned off. dual 2000's, eco mode on, run the A/C, and microwave at the same time.

It's a case of "almost adequate" vs. "barely adequate". there is a world of difference between the two!
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Old 08-16-2011, 07:06 AM   #4
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The eu2000 is an inverter generator so it will provide either correct voltage or no voltage so there should be no low-voltage concerns with that model, nor would I be concerned about damage to the windings for the same reason, i.e. the inverter is electronically limited and will not overload the generator or the engine. If you exceed maximum it will simply shut down.

That said, I have experimented with my eu2000 with several different types of A/C unit and while it will run some of them in moderate temperatures and low altitudes I do not consider it in any way a reliable source of power for a 13.5k BTU A/C or above. For example, while it did run my unit when I tested in moderate temperatures it will not do the job at our current triple-digit temps. I wanted to believe too, but it just won't do it. Adding a second eu2000 is parallel is a popular and effective (if not cheap) solution.
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Old 08-16-2011, 07:11 PM   #5
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The Honda Inverter generator uses a generator rotor/stator very similar to any "Chinese" generator to produce power. Where the Honda differs is the "invertor" block which is an electronic circuit that cleans up the electricity produced by the rotor/stator to eliminate spikes and harmonious fluctuations which occur in any unfiltered generator. This inverter circuit regulates the power and maintains it within very specific voltage output requirements. You can pretty much be assured that if the "green light" is on, the inverter is providing between 109-122 VAC. What happens to that voltage once it leaves the electrical outlet on the generator panel is exactly the same as what happens with any other electrical supply (commercial, generator, inverter, home supply).

When I plugged my trailer into the 20Amp circuit at my home, there was 115VAC output at the outlet. Once that electricity managed its way through the convertor/circuit breakers in the trailer, the power consumed by the AC and the trailer ambient sources significantly reduced the electricity supplied to the outlets (and to the air conditioner). That low voltage occurred within the trailer, not the AC supply. It will drop in your trailer as well. Use a VOM to check output on your Honda generator you'll see it's probably about 120VAC. Go inside the trailer, turn on the AC and use that same VOM to measure voltage at an outlet inside your trailer and you'll see that it will be lower.

It's your generator, your trailer, your AC and your pocket that are at risk,

As for me, I'll take Dometic and Honda's advice and heed their warnings. The normal operating amperage required to run the 15K BTU AC is 15.3 Amps and substantially more to start it. Dometic recommends that for a single 15K BTU Ac a generator rated 3500 Watts be used. The Honda EU2000i is rated at 1600 watts continuous, less than half the Dometic recommendation. Honda does allow for an increased load up to 2000 watts for not longer than 20 minutes.

That means to me that since the AC is rated higher than the generator's maximum continuous power rating of 13.3 amps but lower than the maximum of 20 Amps, you can safely run it for a maximum of 20 minutes before risking damage to your generator. The most likely damage will occur in the rotor windings from overheating. Inverter generators, like all others use copper alloy wire wound in loops to pass through a magnetic field to displace electrons to produce electricity. Inverter's only manage the electrictiy after it's produced in those windings.

I found this "notice" (actually a caution) on page 32 of the EU2000i owners manual.

NOTICE
Substantial overloading that continuously lights the overload indicator (red) may damage the generator. Marginal overloading that temporarily lights the overload indicator (red) may shorten the service life of the generator.

I hope readers of this and other postings don't disregard manufacturer recommendations and proper operation of their equipment based on lack of understanding of the potential risk of damage to their equipment and the costly repairs that could be required.
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Old 08-17-2011, 09:32 AM   #6
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If the generator is connected to the shore power cable where the cable would otherwise be connected to commercial power then the voltage drop inside the RV will be the same for either source.

Quote:
The Honda Inverter generator uses a generator rotor/stator very similar to any "Chinese" generator to produce power.
Actually I think the Honda Inverter generator also uses a generator rotor/stator very similar to any "American" generator to produce power.
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Old 08-17-2011, 04:01 PM   #7
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If the generator is connected to the shore power cable where the cable would otherwise be connected to commercial power then the voltage drop inside the RV will be the same for either source.



Actually I think the Honda Inverter generator also uses a generator rotor/stator very similar to any "American" generator to produce power.
My point exactly. An inverter generator is no "magic bullet" that doesn't have voltage drops when in use. The generator produces power but if the load on the voltage source is too great, the voltage will drop. Sort of like a garden hose, you can get a specific square footage with the sprinkler, but flush all the toilets and run a bath at the same time and the area covered by the sprinkler diminishes significantly.

I agree totally with the rotor/stator. But, my question is: Are there any "American" generators any more? But, you're right, any generator produces electricity pretty much the same way and the parts are theoretically very similar.
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Old 08-17-2011, 04:16 PM   #8
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An inverter generator is no "magic bullet" that doesn't have voltage drops when in use.
It's certainly no magic bullet but an inverter generator (or at least the eu2000 anyway) doesn't show any voltage drop of significance. I've tested it on a Fluke Power Quality Analyzer and it maintains exactly 120 volts and 60.0 hz until it trips out from overload. I haven't tested what happens if you draw between 13.3 amps (continuous rating) and 16.6 amps (max rating) for an extended period though, not sure if it automatically shuts down at a certain point but if it doesn't then yeah, I sure wouldn't recommend running it there indefinitely (nor does Honda apparently.) But whatever you do to it you won't see a voltage droop, or at least I couldn't make it do it. It's 120 volts all the way up until the point it says 'bye bye' and electronically trips out.
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Old 09-25-2011, 06:47 AM   #9
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What generator would you reccomend and where should it be run for this trailer with one 13500AC and a microwave, and do you reccomend gas or propane? hoping to avoid doing things twice if I can do em right.
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Old 09-25-2011, 07:07 AM   #10
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What generator would you reccomend and where should it be run for this trailer with one 13500AC and a microwave, and do you reccomend gas or propane? hoping to avoid doing things twice if I can do em right.
a pair of honda 2000's or yamaha's will do great. I have a pair of honda 2000's. (honda 2000i & honda 2000i companion) when paralleled they will provide more power than the trailer can handle with a 30A circuit. When I only need one generator I only take one. they are light enough to carry and a pair costs about the same as a heavy Honda 3000 watt generator. the choice is do you like Red (Honda) or Blue (yamaha) just stay away from yellow please, keep it quite when camping.
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Old 09-26-2011, 04:17 AM   #11
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I use a blue 3000 watt genny with the boost. It runs my 15k btu AC no problem......but with a 23 amp "limit" I don't use the microwave if the AC is running.
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Old 09-26-2011, 06:29 AM   #12
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We have two Honda Eu2000i's that we have in our low profile tool box in back of truck that are paralleled together that we use if we need a/c.

We had to change the jets when we were at higher altitutes when we were traveling in 2010 but everything worked fine.

Only used one generator for everything else, just needed two gens to run a/c all night long IF we needed or wanted it.

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Old 09-26-2011, 10:18 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robertjhawk View Post
What generator would you reccomend and where should it be run for this trailer with one 13500AC and a microwave, and do you reccomend gas or propane? hoping to avoid doing things twice if I can do em right.
I think the answer to your question is more in the "size of your wallet" than in performance.

If you have a big wallet and want to buy a Honda 3000i, it'll cost you $2555.55 at CW. If you have the PC discount, it's @2299.99.

A Honda 2000i is on sale for $999.99, the companion i is 1099.99 and the parallel cable is $54.99.

The CW cost of the Honda 2000i setup is $2154.97.

Yamaha has much the same setup and the cost is approximately the same.

CW also has a Champion 4000 generator CARB model for $349.99 or the same generator in the 49 State model for $299.99. The same generator is available from Tractor Supply for the smae price.

There are a number of other possibilities, but these should give you the ends of the spectrum, (most expensive and least expensive options).

As for gas/propane. Gas seems to be more cost effective and easier to resupply. There's more gas stations than propane stations in most places. I do believe that most generator models that are available in a gas/propane option (same generator, different carborator setup) that the gas model is rated slightly higher output wattage. Additionally, usually a 5 gallon gas can (red plastic) is much easier to transport than a round 7.5 gal propane tank. At least that's my take on it.

I suppose, you should also consider how you'd use your generator setup. If you plan to use it "dry camping" in a populated area, you'll still be restricted to "quiet hours" with either setup, but during the day, when generators are allowed, the Yamaha or Honda setup would be quieter, but then, during the day with radios, kids playing, other generators running, 4 wheelers and motorbikes on the roads, is there really that much difference that it'll be noticed 2 campsites over?

These are all points for you to consider. There is an online forum that has well over 3000 entries concerning the "Chinese Champion generator" and there is a tremendous amount of support for it on that forum. There's no doubt Honda/Yamaha are quieter, I suppose you could say the "cadillac" version, but I'd guess you tow with either a Dodge, Ford or GM, so you already realize that "cadillac" is not always the best choice for every decision.

Weigh your options, consider whether you really want to spend upwards of $2500 for alternate power for a 2007 Outback.
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