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Old 06-15-2019, 02:30 PM   #41
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I'll try it next time I bring mine home. Honestly, I have not tried the AC with generator after the easy start was installed. I have the Sprinter. My initial understanding was that it would be next to impossible to run AC and fridge together without plugging in. I always have fridge and freezer in use. But I will give AC a try on generator without fridge just to see if I experience the same thing.
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Old 06-15-2019, 05:23 PM   #42
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I'll try it next time I bring mine home. Honestly, I have not tried the AC with generator after the easy start was installed. I have the Sprinter. My initial understanding was that it would be next to impossible to run AC and fridge together without plugging in. I always have fridge and freezer in use. But I will give AC a try on generator without fridge just to see if I experience the same thing.
Thanks - will be interesting to see what happens.

I've solved my issue. The generator WILL run my A/C as long as I disable the Mini-PCS. This is the same way it worked before I installed the $$$ EasyStart. But it works slightly different now. Before installing the EasyStart the Mini-PCS would just disconnect the generator each time the A/C compressor started. I've seen up to 42A on the PCS display. I would then disable the Mini-PCS and the generator would run the A/C OK.

Now with EasyStart installed the Mini-PCS just does a load shed of the A/C compressor, but does not indicate that on the PCS display. Since there is a time delay on the PCS display I only saw about 17A before the compressor was shut down. That was what confused me and made me think the EasyStart was causing the problem.

Bottom line the EasyStart does lower the A/C compressor START load as designed. But it has no effect on the RUN load of compressor. The PCS in my van load sheds the compressor at 19A, but the generator can handle that load all day long. I wired my add-on Progressive EMS to monitor the incoming generator power. During my last 20 minute test run the compressor load varied from 17-19A, within the generators capacity.
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Old 06-16-2019, 08:00 AM   #43
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Hi

To add even more confusion to all this: The "run" current on the AC is variable depending on conditions. You *can* see it as low as 15A, which might tempt you to plug things into a wall outlet..... not a good idea ....

The same "couple of amps" variability can get you into all sorts of combination issues. One time you can run the AC *and* the giant boom box. Next time you have trouble.

Bob
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Old 06-16-2019, 04:42 PM   #44
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Mike,
Glad you figured out what was going on with your rig. We had a hot, humid day here so I fired up the Onan genset and tried the A/C with the new Easy-Start. The fan would run but the compressor kicked out immediately. Our 2011 AI has an Intellitec Energy Management System. I think that might be different from your brand of EMS. On the EMS panel, I shut off the breakers to the water heater, coffee maker, and microwave and the load display went blank. I assumed that meant that the EMS was off so I tried the A/C again on the genset. The fan ran but the compressor didn't even try to come on that time. I plugged the coach into shore power and the compressor kicked right on and stayed on. Last summer I was able to run the A/C on the genset so the EMS was working properly then. I installed the Easy-Start so I could use A/C with my Yamaha 2400. I'd rather not have to choose between the two generator options but it's looking like I might have to. Any thoughts?
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Old 06-16-2019, 10:06 PM   #45
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Hi

To add even more confusion to all this: The "run" current on the AC is variable depending on conditions.
Bob
UNCLEBOB - This is so true according to Cummins Onan. It is an easily overlooked variable to consider. From their manual:
"Power decreases 3.5% for each 1,000 feet above an altitude of 500 feet.

Power decreases in extreme temperatures by 1% for each 10 F (5.5 C) above 85 F (29.4C). "

Calculating these factors, let's say where I am right now (at my house in Vegas, 3,000ft. asl and 105 degrees today)
3.5% 2.5 (2,500 ft. above rated gen altitude)
= 8.75% power loss on my 2800 watt gen
= 245 watt power loss and I am left with 2555 watts

1% x 2 (20 degrees above rated gen temp)
= 2% additional power loss on my 2800 watt gen
= 56 watt additional power loss

Total power loss = 301 watts
I am left with 2499 watts

So just staying home with temps at just start of summer, I am already giving up 301 watts.
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Old 06-17-2019, 07:54 AM   #46
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Wow...that is an impressive way to look at things. You would likely go thru a tank of propane a day which can be more than paying for hookup. In retrospect, that was probably my problem last year...I was in Texas hill country...not sure of elevation, but it was hot. Just running fridge and fantastic fan, I used a tank of propane very quickly running generator Overall, I would be pretty miserable camping in the summer without hook ups. I cannot go without air conditioning.
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Old 06-17-2019, 10:13 AM   #47
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Hi

To add even more confusion to all this: The "run" current on the AC is variable depending on conditions. You *can* see it as low as 15A, which might tempt you to plug things into a wall outlet..... not a good idea ....

.... Bob
Very true Bob. If you need to run A/C on generator then that is all you get.

The only time I've "needed" to run A/C on my generator was at my grandson's Little League baseball games on a hot summer days. It is nice having the van cooled down to get a brief break from the heat.
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Old 06-17-2019, 02:47 PM   #48
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I think I have about a day to a day and a half of run time with a full propane tank on my 2015 AI. The generator uses .3 to .6 gallons of propane per hour depending on load per the spec sheet. The tank has an 18.9 gallon capacity but it always has some vapor space so maybe 16 gallons of usable capacity. 16 gallons, .4 gallons per hour, 40 hours.
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Old 06-17-2019, 08:10 PM   #49
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This YouTube video shows how the Mini-PCS should work if you have a late model Interstate with Model 610 Mini-PCS that has a 22A generator load shed setting.

https://youtu.be/dX1Qnhh0kKk

My older Model 600 Mini-PCS does not work this way even when the generator load is below the 20A load shed limit.

Ive studied all the wiring diagrams and there are some wiring changes I could make to work around this A/C on generator limit on my 2013 Interstate. They would involve removing the generator hour meter input to the Mini-PCS or putting a switch on this input to turn it off when using the A/C on generator.

But concluded it was not worth any further investigation or modifications. It is very simple to just turn off a few Circuit Breakers when I need to run A/C on the generator. Especially since that when using A/C on generator that is all you get.
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Old 06-17-2019, 08:50 PM   #50
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But concluded it was not worth any further investigation or modifications. It is very simple to just turn off a few Circuit Breakers when I need to run A/C on the generator. Especially since that when using A/C on generator that is all you get.
MIKE - 100% agree. If it was my unit, other than if I wanted to just make them fix under warranty, I would not do anything either since it buys you no additional load to add when using gen. anyways.

RYOUNCA - Apologies, I still have no idea how much propane my tank holds and too lazy to check right now. But just basing on my last trip usage, I must have a proper efficient gen or a/c or both, plus I was at low altitude when I was running the a/c for many hours via gen when we were in Scottsdale (read 100-106 degrees).

Start gen hrs. & propane level = 37.5 hrs. 63%
End gen hrs. & propane level = 46.8 hrs. 28%
Gen run time in Scottsdale = 9.3 hrs.
Propane used = approx. 35%
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Old 06-18-2019, 05:50 AM   #51
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My AC has always worked OK on generator - both starting and running. By definition it has been hot out when I run the AC, so I have suffered the high temperature power loss. But don't think that I have ever been at much altitude when running it.

I have never put my EMS to test. When running the AC off the generator I do not run the microwave or electric water heater nor use the 110 V plugs because I knew that I didn't have enough power to do so. Likewise I do my own mental EMS when using 30A shore power. Couple of times I was tempted to power something besides the AC, just to see if the EMS sheds loads like it is supposed to. But figured there was a chance of something failing, and I'd be forever kicking myself for breaking something just because I was too damn curious!
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Old 06-19-2019, 03:29 PM   #52
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My AC has always worked OK on generator - both starting and running. By definition it has been hot out when I run the AC, so I have suffered the high temperature power loss. But don't think that I have ever been at much altitude when running it.

I have never put my EMS to test. When running the AC off the generator I do not run the microwave or electric water heater nor use the 110 V plugs because I knew that I didn't have enough power to do so. Likewise I do my own mental EMS when using 30A shore power. Couple of times I was tempted to power something besides the AC, just to see if the EMS sheds loads like it is supposed to. But figured there was a chance of something failing, and I'd be forever kicking myself for breaking something just because I was too damn curious!
TITUS - I hear ya. FYI - chances are you won't break anything testing if your EMS sheds properly. They are just control logic relays and are meant to shed before the breakers hit their limit. So theoretically, the currents involved are below where they would damage the equipment. I have personally shed loads on a regular basis BUT not by choice. Just stupidity like having it at 15A when I am plugged into 20A outlet. But knock wood, nothing fried. But I agree, I don't go out of my way testing it's limits, just don't want push my luck
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Old 06-24-2019, 02:52 PM   #53
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MIKE - It is 102 here at 3,200 ft asl and my batts are BULK charging. I can happily report even on 20A dedicated breaker at daughter's hous, PCS sheds the A/C. So gen or not, especially if its this hot, (as you said) that's all we got

Sheds as steady state current starts staying at the 19A mark.

TITUS - I honestly was not testing my PCS. But the heat, altitude, batts needing lots of charge still got me in trouble.
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Old 06-27-2019, 08:29 PM   #54
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I'm still confused with my generator and A/C disfunction. Since installing the Micro-air easy-start, when I turn on the A/C with the Onan on board genset as the power source, the compressor comes on and shuts off within seconds. The fan continues to run. I have shut off all the other breakers so the Energy Management system shouldn't be active. I had not tried running the A/C on my Yamaha 2400 inverter so I hooked it up today. It ran the A/C for an hour without a hiccup. I'm still not sure why the compressor is kicking out on the Onan but not the Yamaha. They have similar ratings and before installing the Easy-start the Onan ran the A/C just fine. Apparently I solved one issue but created another one. I think the Law of Unintended Consequences has caught up with me.
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Old 06-27-2019, 10:01 PM   #55
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I'm still confused with my generator and A/C disfunction. Since installing the Micro-air easy-start, when I turn on the A/C with the Onan on board genset as the power source, the compressor comes on and shuts off within seconds. The fan continues to run. I have shut off all the other breakers so the Energy Management system shouldn't be active. I had not tried running the A/C on my Yamaha 2400 inverter so I hooked it up today. It ran the A/C for an hour without a hiccup. I'm still not sure why the compressor is kicking out on the Onan but not the Yamaha. They have similar ratings and before installing the Easy-start the Onan ran the A/C just fine. Apparently I solved one issue but created another one. I think the Law of Unintended Consequences has caught up with me.


Are you sure you have the Microair installed correctly? Also did you let the a/c go through the learning phase by starting and stopping air conditioner three times on shore power first?
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Old 06-27-2019, 10:03 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by BurntAsphalt View Post
I'm still confused with my generator and A/C disfunction. Since installing the Micro-air easy-start, when I turn on the A/C with the Onan on board genset as the power source, the compressor comes on and shuts off within seconds. The fan continues to run. I have shut off all the other breakers so the Energy Management system shouldn't be active. I had not tried running the A/C on my Yamaha 2400 inverter so I hooked it up today. It ran the A/C for an hour without a hiccup. I'm still not sure why the compressor is kicking out on the Onan but not the Yamaha. They have similar ratings and before installing the Easy-start the Onan ran the A/C just fine. Apparently I solved one issue but created another one. I think the Law of Unintended Consequences has caught up with me.


Another question: have you observed the amperage when your air conditioner is starting and until the time it shuts off in that few second period that you mentioned. If so, what was the amperage?
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Old 06-28-2019, 01:11 PM   #57
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I'm still confused with my generator and A/C disfunction. Since installing the Micro-air easy-start, when I turn on the A/C with the Onan on board genset as the power source, the compressor comes on and shuts off within seconds. The fan continues to run. I have shut off all the other breakers so the Energy Management system shouldn't be active. I had not tried running the A/C on my Yamaha 2400 inverter so I hooked it up today. It ran the A/C for an hour without a hiccup. I'm still not sure why the compressor is kicking out on the Onan but not the Yamaha. They have similar ratings and before installing the Easy-start the Onan ran the A/C just fine. Apparently I solved one issue but created another one. I think the Law of Unintended Consequences has caught up with me.
Did the onboard Onan generator power the A/C before you installed the EasyStart? Mine would only do if I disabled the EMS by shutting OFF breakers. The EMS would trip all power when the compressor started as it was pulling about 40A on start. The the EMS would delay for 2 minutes and repeat cycle, never running the A/C. I installed the EasyStart (ES) to lower the compressor start load. But the other built in protective feature of the ES conflict with the load shed features of the EMS.

You are facing the same issue I had after installing the EasyStart unit. With troubleshooting suggestion from Micro-Air I removed cover on EasyStart unit and observed the LED fault lights. (They now ship the EasyStart with a clear cover so you can check fault lights easier.)

There is an advanced troubleshooting guide on the Micro-Air web site. It gave me the meanings of the fault lights. On my unit it indicated an power interrupt. Once the EasyStart senses an interruption it times out the compressor for 5-minutes! Then just keeps repeating that cycle. I concluded it was the load shedding function of the PCI EMS (Mini-PCS) causing the interrupt problem.

Once I turned off the all 120VAC breakers except the main and A/C it would power the A/C OK, just like it did before installing the ES. The EMS Mini-PCS display is blanked out if it OFF. I also have my add-on Progressive EMS built-in power monitor wired after the transfer switch to observe power from shore or generator.

Recommend you contact Mico-Air for help. They were very responsive, but I don't think they understand the interplay between their EasyStart and the PCI Mini-PCS (aka EMS). My view is the EasyStart is NOT designed to work with the interrupts from the EMS Mini-PCS. They need more feedback to change their design. The 5 minute delay after an interrupt from a load shed devices like the EMS is just crazy. Why a 5 minute delay?

Also I noticed the newer versions of the EMS don't load shed until 22A on generator (GEN). I'd bet PCI changed the design to alleviate this frustrating problem. My older version of the EMS is specified to load sheds at 20A, but mine does it at 18A. With my A/C compressor running load as high as 19A the EMS is load shedding long before the generator maximum capability.

BTW - I also ran my A/C by plugging in a Honda 2000i generator. But plugging in an external generator does not enable the GEN mode of the EMS. It just looks like shore power to the EMS.

Good luck - this was one of the most frustrating problems I have had on my Interstate.
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Old 06-29-2019, 06:59 AM   #58
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Hi

Why 5 minute delay?

Ok, on an AC compressor, sort of the worst thing you can do is get it partly running, then shut it down. You can get into a state where it will eat its self if powered back on. There are built in pressure relief gizmos to take care of the problem. They take time to do their thing.

If you dig into the manual for your Progressive EMS, it has settings for this as well. Any good controller that drives an AC *should* be aware of the problem.

The gotcha is that the control board / control system built into the AC may (or may not) have a timeout built into it. The guys at Progressive or at Micro-Aire really have no way to know what is and isn't built into the rest of the AC unit. They also don't know what's inside the compressor. Is 5 minutes needed or is 3 minutes ok? How about two minutes? There is no way to know for sure.

Bob
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Old 06-29-2019, 10:40 AM   #59
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Hi

Why 5 minute delay?

Ok, on an AC compressor, sort of the worst thing you can do is get it partly running, then shut it down. You can get into a state where it will eat its self if powered back on. There are built in pressure relief gizmos to take care of the problem. They take time to do their thing.

If you dig into the manual for your Progressive EMS, it has settings for this as well. Any good controller that drives an AC *should* be aware of the problem.

The gotcha is that the control board / control system built into the AC may (or may not) have a timeout built into it. The guys at Progressive or at Micro-Aire really have no way to know what is and isn't built into the rest of the AC unit. They also don't know what's inside the compressor. Is 5 minutes needed or is 3 minutes ok? How about two minutes? There is no way to know for sure.

Bob
OK - I get it. Obviously 5 minutes is very conservative. On my Interstate van with a Mini-PCS I've observed a 2-minute cycle once a load is shed. There is also some time delay built into the Dometic A/C controller.

Just to keep some facts straight in the vernacular of the mixed terms used by Airstream, here are some clarifications...

The Progressive Industries Electrical Management Systems (EMS) is a surge protector not used by Airstream. I added a hard-wired EMS-30 to my van.
https://www.progressiveindustries.net/ems-lchw30

The Precision Circuits Inc. Mini Power Control System (Mini-PCS) is a overload protection device found on many RVs to prevent tripping circuit breakers. Confusion is created by Airstream when they label the Mini-PCS as a Energy Management System (EMS) in the owner's manuals. While the display is clearly labeled a Power Control System in the van.
https://precisioncircuitsinc.com/pro...-wh-ac-2-ac-1/
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Old 06-29-2019, 12:15 PM   #60
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OK - I get it. Obviously 5 minutes is very conservative.
MIKE - while I agree with UNCLEBOB that Progressive or MicroStart have no way knowing if the A/C controller already has a delay, 5 minutes is just way too overkill for preventing short-cycling. I figure if Dometic specs a manual delay of 2-3 mins. then that ought be sufficient delay for most units? It's not an expert statement I am making, it is a question that maybe HVAC folks can confirm?
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