Originally Posted by DHart
Wow... lots of informative comments here, guys. Thank you, all.
I have one EU2000i at present. So, from what I'm reading, I am considering getting a second unit.
Is the EU2000i "Companion" model the best one to get as a second unit?
Any reason a "Companion" model might be less suitable be used on its own, than the regular EU2000i?
I have both Honda generators (original and companion). When using only one, I tend to use the companion since it has the 30 amp adapter I can plug in and then use my 30 Amp to trailer cable.
I have a 2004 Safari. One Honda 2000 will not run my AC which is supposed to be 13.5KW. I do not have (nor want) a microwave so I don't know if one would run it. I do know that one generator runs my Kuerig single cup coffee maker at 1250 watts and my toaster at 750 Watts (I don't try them at the same time).
There is a pretty good explanation on AltEStore.com regarding what needs what (although it is focused on solar, it still is informative even if you are not interested in solar).
I bought the two for the AC in the southwest (summer - daytime) and now am reluctant to use it since although very quiet, they still interfere with the sounds of nature. I will probably add some solar and then use what makes sense for the charger setting. Some National Parks and National Forest Campgrounds have time restrictions (and apparently some even deny the use of generators entirely).
My original Parallax converter was only single stage, so charging the house batteries (two Interstate Deep Cycle) was a challenge. With the minimal current from the battery charging circuit on one of the Honda's (direct dc plug) I fount that to be really time consuming and unsatisfactory. After reading many threads here, I replaced the Parallax converter with a Progressive Dynamics 4645 converter with a 3 stage charger. Now whether plugged into shore power or running the generator, I recharge much faster and can keep up day to day with heating fans, etc. I am sure solar would allow me to do this as well, so I have a Trimetric Meter and a Morningstar Tristar Solar Charge controller to add this spring, for at least "top-off" solar to the batteries.
I changed out the light bulbs for M4 Product LEDs and find I don't need a lot of electricity most of the time. I have enough space in the truck (back seat up and 6.5 foot Tundra bed with Leer tonneau cover that I can take the generators and everything else I need so space and weight are not a problem. Not everybody can say that... especially if traveling with family, so sometimes loads can dominate and you might find yourself leaving one generator back and not using the other.
A lot depends on camping style and family preferences, but it is nice to have options. I would rather run the generator than freeze because my furnace fan didn't have enough power. If you do get a second generator, you will find that under load they do not run all night. Some are put out by needing to get up to refill the one gallon tanks, but I use a 6 gallon tank with special generator tank caps that allow me to feed both from a metal 6 gallon tank that came years ago with and Evinrude 9.9 HP outboard... so I can go for days with partial use (noon to 3 PM for charging) without refilling the tanks. When I stop the generators the tanks are full (they have fuel pumps in each that draw from the 6 gallon tank). I don't even get gas on my fingers anymore.
You will find that people have developed lots of stuff to make like easier... part of the fun is discovering what they are!