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Old 03-28-2014, 06:00 AM   #1
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2006 34' Classic
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Usage of generator

Goal: use generators to power electrical needs , including A/C, of 2006 classic airstream 34'

I bought two new Honda generators 2000 that hooked together should provide 30amps .

I hooked them up together in as factory directed to run in series.

Used power cord from RV and fit into generator.

The generators would kick off and not stay running.

I need some education and tips for mgmgt of generators with airstream.

Is it possible to run two generators together and power airstream?

What are the limitations of the generators?

How many watts can they provide?

Is there a strategy for how to use them and when? Ie Eco throttle option

Thank you
Marshall
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Old 03-28-2014, 06:33 AM   #2
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It should work as long as you aren't trying to run both air conditioners.

What items did you have running in the camper?

Eco throttle is fine as long they're both turned on. But first let's figure out why they're not handling the load.

Also, I'm assuming you have the generators hooked together correctly - red to red, black to black, grounds connected.
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Old 03-28-2014, 06:43 AM   #3
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When in parallel operation and running the air conditioning, we have had the best performance with the eco-mode off.

The eco-mode allows the generator to run at a very low speed to save fuel and make less noise. In operation, there is a delay in meeting high demand loads, like an air conditioner starting or a water heater coming on.

For loads like a coffee maker, hair dryer to water heater, where the load is a heating element this delay does not make much difference. These appliances simply don't heat until the current and voltage is high enough to operate.

For an motor trying to start, the compressor in an AC for instance, this delay causes problems. These motors need the boost of an capacitor to start when the voltage and current is fully present, and can't "wait" for the generator to surge out of the eco-throttle mode. By the time the electricity gets there, the capacitor is drained and the motor can't start.



We have had the Honda twins for several years and they work great.



Regards,

JD
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Old 03-28-2014, 07:18 AM   #4
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Ok
So my a/c is only single unit for the 34' foot.
So it uses 30 amps correct? And if I have two 2000 Honda hooked up in series then , in theory , it should work.
I will attempt it again. It may take a couple of days to get back out there to RV lot.
Thank u
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Old 03-28-2014, 07:27 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Sooners67 View Post
Ok
So my a/c is only single unit for the 34' foot.
So it uses 30 amps correct? And if I have two 2000 Honda hooked up in series then , in theory , it should work.
I will attempt it again. It may take a couple of days to get back out there to RV lot.
Thank u
It should. We need more information, though - does it die as soon as you plug in? Or when you start the A/C?

Often, if the generators die when you're turning on the A/C, it's a sign of a problem with the A/C, such as the previously-mentioned capacitor. There have been a couple threads where people started complaining about their generators, only to discover the problem was actually in the A/C.
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Old 03-28-2014, 07:35 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sooners67 View Post
Ok
So my a/c is only single unit for the 34' foot.
So it uses 30 amps correct? And if I have two 2000 Honda hooked up in series then , in theory , it should work.
I will attempt it again. It may take a couple of days to get back out there to RV lot.
Thank u
You keep saying "hooked up in series." That's not right. They're hooked up in parallel. Or should be, anyway. The companion models are designed to synchronize so that they're in phase with each other when both are running and feeding power through the same shore power cable.

Anyway, addressing the whole "will kick on and then die" issue… Make sure everything is turned off inside the trailer when you start the generators, so they're not starting under load. Start the main generator first, then the companion generator. The companion generator is the one that has to sync to the main, not vice versa, so if you start the companion generator first, they may take longer to sync up.

Once the generators are running, then turn on one breaker at a time, starting with the main. Then once the breakers are all on, then start turning on appliances one at a time. Each time the load increases, the generator engine RPMs should increase.
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Old 03-28-2014, 07:40 AM   #7
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Ok
It sounds like the step by step increase if demand bypasses the initial surge to accelerate the system.


Ok so it's not series but in parallel
Thanks
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Old 03-28-2014, 08:06 AM   #8
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Our two Honda 2000's run our air conditioner just fine.

Do the math--simple math is the only kind I can do, do it's the only kind I recommend.

Calculate the amps needed by each appliance in the trailer. Should be on the label somewhere, but often is in watts. A watt is a volt time an amp, so just divide watts by 120 to get amps. Then use this info to manage your loads. The generators will handle 30 amps, so make sure that's all you turn on at the same time. AC might have to be off to run microwave, etc.

Also remember to add some room in the load plan for the AC to start. Big motors need much more current to get started than they do to run. Our AC is rated to draw 14 amps. That probably almost doubles when starting, so not much else runs when the AC needs to be on.

When only the AC and a few lights are running, the two Hondas carry the load very well.
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Old 03-28-2014, 08:06 AM   #9
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Ok
It sounds like the step by step increase if demand bypasses the initial surge to accelerate the system.


Ok so it's not series but in parallel
Thanks
You're welcome. Even if you are a Sooners fan (I went to OSU, that other university)!
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Old 03-29-2014, 07:18 AM   #10
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Lol
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