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Old 08-18-2019, 07:42 AM   #1
Gpreciado05
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2008 Springdale 189 A/C

Hello all!!

First post to the forum, but been camping for a a good time in a tent trailer and recently picked up a 2008 Springdale 189 from the original owner.

The issue I am having is I own a 4000/3500 generator and it is struggling with running the 13.5k A/C. The Volts on the generator go from 120 down to 65 and it stays there for a bit and it idles down pretty good, but doesn’t pop the breaker or go into overload just idles really rough and bogs down. The a/c blows cold and I have set it to the highest setting just to see what happens when the compressor shuts off and the generator climbs back up.

I climbed up on the roof after reading about the Hardstart Cap kit and after opening everything up I found it has one already installed, now I am at a crossroads because I was hoping that i would just need to install a Hardstart.

So I have a couple questions:

1. Do the Hardstarts go bad but still let the A/C work and is there a way to possibly test them?
2. Do I just buy another one and hope it works?
3. Or is it the generator and I need a bigger one?

I appreciate everyone’s help with this, thanks in advance!
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Old 08-18-2019, 08:04 AM   #2
hankpage
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Does everything work okay on shore power?? I suspect the genny.
Is your battery fully charged and in good condition?? If not your converter/charger could be pulling as much as 13amps. Try turning off the breaker marked CON/RECPT (or similar) and see what happens.
Switch hot water and fridge to gas.

(1. Do the Hardstarts go bad but still let the A/C work?) We are dealing with RVs here. Everything can go bad!

Do not run A/C with voltage as low as you say. Personally I would not run below 90v for any extended length of time.

Welcome to the forum and keep us informed of you progress, Hank
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Old 08-18-2019, 08:47 AM   #3
Gpreciado05
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hankpage View Post
Does everything work okay on shore power?? I suspect the genny.
Is your battery fully charged and in good condition?? If not your converter/charger could be pulling as much as 13amps. Try turning off the breaker marked CON/RECPT (or similar) and see what happens.
Switch hot water and fridge to gas.

(1. Do the Hardstarts go bad but still let the A/C work?) We are dealing with RVs here. Everything can go bad!

Do not run A/C with voltage as low as you say. Personally I would not run below 90v for any extended length of time.

Welcome to the forum and keep us informed of you progress, Hank
thanks for the fast reply Hankpage!

So we just picked up the trailer this past Thursday and we were just trying to go thru everything. I tried plugging in the trailer to my house power but the breaker kept popping, Everything else ran fine but once I tried the A/C or the microwave it would pop the breaker because of the load I suspect and the breaker was a 15amp circuit. I haven’t tried running an extension cord to the dryer to see if the 40amp breaker will hold the A\C.

So we haven’t tried it on shore power yet and the trailer doesn’t have any batteries, would not having batteries be the culprit?

Thanks again
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Old 08-18-2019, 09:05 AM   #4
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First off DO NOT plug I to dryer. Dryer is 220 volts camper is 110, it won't be pretty.
Yes you need a charged 12 volt battery. 12 volts controls a/c, (water heater, furnace and ref. also) but 110 operates a/c, water heater and ref. Even if using gas for water heater, furnace and ref you still need battery 12 volts to make them work. A/C will not work off 110 volt 15 amp extension cord need a dedicated 110 volt 30 amp service for the camper.
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Old 08-18-2019, 09:14 AM   #5
Gpreciado05
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Thanks Terry!

So the trailer has two battery boxes on the front tongue so I have to buy two batteries to run the generator and test the A/C?

Shouldn’t I be able to run the A/C off a generator without batteries?

Sorry for all the noob questions.
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Old 08-18-2019, 09:56 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Gpreciado05 View Post
Thanks Terry!

So the trailer has two battery boxes on the front tongue so I have to buy two batteries to run the generator and test the A/C?

Shouldn’t I be able to run the A/C off a generator without batteries?

Sorry for all the noob questions.
It still needs a 12 volt source/ battery to control it. If you put 2 batteries (12 volt) in make sure you wire them in parallel. 12 volts controls everything unless you have a household ref.
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Old 08-18-2019, 10:55 AM   #7
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Ok sounds good!

I will get the two batteries and try it again, I do turn off all the breakers other than the A/C and the main.

I will report back what happens after I trickle charge the batteries to make sure they are fully charged.

One last thing how do I find out what size batteries I need there are two different sizes 24 and 27.

Thanks again! This place rocks!
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Old 08-18-2019, 11:20 AM   #8
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Regarding the batteries, measure the boxes. If a group 27s will fit, use those. About the same cost and will give you more amp hours for dry camping. Otherwise use the group 24.
As for the generator, output voltage should always be 110 to 120 volts. It's the amperage/wattage that varies as the load/demand increases or decreases. If you have a volt ohm meter verify the generator output at both high and low rpm. You can plug in a hairdryer or some other load to verify the generator is providing the necessary power noticing the rpm increasing as the load is applied.
If you were trying to run the A/C on 15 amp shore power and the converter was trying to charge the batteries and it was during the day i.e. hot, then yes the circuit was overloaded and the 15 amp breaker did it's job protecting the house wiring. You need a 20 amp 110vac house circuit to run the A/C.
Keep us posted with your results
Oh, WELCOME to the forum!!
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Old 08-18-2019, 11:46 AM   #9
Gpreciado05
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Thanks canonman!

The trailer didn’t come with any batteries and I tried running the A/C using house power to do the same thing and it would pop the breaker as soon as the compressor would kick on(ran fine with just the fan)so I bought a used generator to try everything out, that’s when I noticed the inability of the generator to run the A/C without it bogging down pretty ugly when the compressor kicked on(fan ran fine). I will be running off the generator when we go out the majority of the time to recharge the batteries from us using the lights and heater. I like the idea of being able to run the A/C if need be off the generator and that’s where I am stuck because it can’t and the generator is sized appropriately (according to what is needed for a 13.5k A/C)and my A/C unit already has the hard start Cap installed(don’t know if it working)

I will spend the $200.00 and get the batteries for the trailer and try the generator and A/C .

Thanks again everyone!
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Old 08-20-2019, 06:09 AM   #10
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Several observations.
I used my 13.5k AC from an extension cord off a 20A GFCI at least 100' away and 30A to 20A dongle. The generator must be a proper inverter type not a construction genny. I can start and run my 15K AC with a pair of Honda EU2000's and can run it on one of them. A soft start kit (no idea where hard start came from) will allow you to run and start a 13.5 from a 2k sine wave inverter genny. For batteries, get 2 Trojan T105's. They are proper deep cycle batteries and have 225AH. They are 6V so must be wired in parallel. keep them on a smart charger when not on shore/house (same thing BTW) because the built in converter on a trailer that old will not likely have a proper charge profile and the wires are usually too small and too long. Off season I brought mine in the basement and put a proper battery maintainer on them overnight once a month. If a battery is labelled as deep discharge AND also has a CCA or CA rating it is NOT a true deep cycle.
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Old 08-20-2019, 07:40 AM   #11
Gpreciado05
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Thanks for the response!

I was trying the A/C in an outlet off a 15amp circuit, I haven’t tried the 20amp yet but will today.

So I purchased a champion generator which is a basic generator not an inverter so do I sell my generator?

I have seen these types of generators at local camp sites running A/Cs so I may not know the difference.

Thanks again!
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Old 08-20-2019, 08:13 AM   #12
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The AC will draw 13-15 amps so I don't run anything else when I'm running the AC off of a 20 amp circuit at home. The converter will supply 12 volts without the batteries so you don't really need the batteries if you're plugged in. And if you have the controls located right on the AC itself it doesn't need 12 volts anyways. Only if you have a remote wall mounted thermostat do you need 12 volts for the AC.

The inverter generators are much quieter, you don't want to be the guy running an open frame generator in the campground! You'll get plenty of nasty looks and usually a round of applause when you shut it off!

Edit: I see you have a 13.5k BTU AC. I am running a 15k BTU so your amp draw will be slightly less. I installed an EasyStart on my AC unit and can start and run it my old Honda 2kw generator. But it is maxed out and you can't run anything else. I used to run a 13.5k BTU AC on the generator but it was borderline starting it. If your going to run it at home you need a 20 amp circuit and a short extension cord at least a 12 gauge.
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Old 08-20-2019, 08:52 AM   #13
Gpreciado05
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Sounds about right on the loudness of the generator, but now I go back to my original question.

Should have the 4000/3500 watt generator run the A/C without bogging down?

My A/C has the easy start already installed and it was bogging down the generator does this mean that it is bad? Or is the generator bad?
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Old 08-20-2019, 09:03 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Gpreciado05 View Post
Sounds about right on the loudness of the generator, but now I go back to my original question.

Should have the 4000/3500 watt generator run the A/C without bogging down?

My A/C has the easy start already installed and it was bogging down the generator does this mean that it is bad? Or is the generator bad?
That generator will run it easily. If it's bogging down it sounds like a generator problem. You have an EasyStart installed? It's not just the hard start capacitor, it's a device you install on the AC that limits the starting current. Look up EasyStart and check it out. But even without it that generator should run that AC. You've got to make sure you don't have any other big AC loads on like has been said previously.

https://www.microair.net/products/ea...nt=30176048267
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Old 08-20-2019, 09:15 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Gpreciado05 View Post
Thanks for the response!

I was trying the A/C in an outlet off a 15amp circuit, I haven’t tried the 20amp yet but will today.

So I purchased a champion generator which is a basic generator not an inverter so do I sell my generator?

I have seen these types of generators at local camp sites running A/Cs so I may not know the difference.

Thanks again!
You definitely want an inverter type generator. It will protect your sensitive electronics and they are far more likely to deliver close to their power claims while cheap construction generators are suspect. If you do have the easy start installed then that generator is horrible. The latest model of mine is a 2,200 watt unit, which is the same upgrade from 2,000 as 15 is from 13.5.
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Old 08-20-2019, 09:34 AM   #16
Gpreciado05
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Sonofcy thanks for your help!!

So your generator is a Honda 2000 but can you tell me what are the running watts are?

Ryobi makes a inverter generator that is 2300 starting and 1800 watts running.

I just don’t want to buy a generator that will not work then I am stuck since generators are hard to get returned once they have been run.

Thanks again!
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Old 08-20-2019, 09:38 AM   #17
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1,600 watts running. That Ryobi sounds good.
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Old 08-20-2019, 09:45 AM   #18
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Do your research. Not all 2000 watt generators are capable of doing this. Go to the EasyStart website and read up. They have some real world advice based on their testing that shows how the Honda can do it but other brands similarly rated failed to get it done.

Here's my Dometic 15k BTU AC with the EasyStart installed running on a 15 year old Honda 2000 watt generator. The newer Hondas have a little more capacity than my old one. Without the EasyStart you won't be able to make it work.

https://youtu.be/XTELtKVEXYA
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Old 08-20-2019, 09:53 AM   #19
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My apologies if I misinformed. Since I would not consider using anything but a Honda or Yamaha I didn't check the other brands. I assumed all inverter style gen sets labeled 2,000 would be the same. I am far too trusting.
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Old 08-20-2019, 11:04 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonofcy View Post
Several observations.
I used my 13.5k AC from an extension cord off a 20A GFCI at least 100' away and 30A to 20A dongle. The generator must be a proper inverter type not a construction genny. I can start and run my 15K AC with a pair of Honda EU2000's and can run it on one of them. A soft start kit (no idea where hard start came from) will allow you to run and start a 13.5 from a 2k sine wave inverter genny. For batteries, get 2 Trojan T105's. They are proper deep cycle batteries and have 225AH. They are 6V so must be wired in parallel. keep them on a smart charger when not on shore/house (same thing BTW) because the built in converter on a trailer that old will not likely have a proper charge profile and the wires are usually too small and too long. Off season I brought mine in the basement and put a proper battery maintainer on them overnight once a month. If a battery is labelled as deep discharge AND also has a CCA or CA rating it is NOT a true deep cycle.
Curious... why does the generator have to be an inverter type? I can run my A/C using my 4000/3500 Champion generator and the A/C works fine. I can't use the microwave or a bunch of other 110V circuits at the same time but the A/C works (microwave not running and hot water heater A/C off).
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