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Old 09-24-2016, 04:36 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Bassdogs View Post
This ?? seems to come up every few months and it shouldn't escape notice that the Gold Standard that all generators are measured against is the Honda 2000. The Yahama 2000 [about the same price] has gotten similar ratings from users. This all has been the same for almost a decade. There is a reason and Honda's [and Yahama} are the best. There are those who seem to like the Champions that cost less, but at the end of the day the proof is what you see when you walk around a "no hook-up" campground. Campers are drawn to what works and what they can depend on to do what it is advertised to do. Honda doesn't have to advertise the Honda inverters, the little red things at your neighbor's campsites does it for them.
What you say is true - a lot of people have Hondas.
But there may be other reasons that so many people have Hondas.
  • They have been available for a long time
  • Until recently, there weren't that many other good choices, and
  • They last a long time
So people who bought Hondas may have bought them a while ago, when there weren't a lot of options and Hondas clearly were and still are the best, but also VERY expensive. They have no need to buy another generator if they already have one that works well. Why would they buy something else when they already have filled their need?

But it would be interesting to see the sales figures for Champion vs Honda vs Yamaha for the past few years. Perhaps Honda is still the leader with RVers, but I bet Champion has made major inroads.

Just because a lot of people have things doesn't always mean it is the best deal. A lot of people bought beanie babies too. They are probably not buying them now, but I bet a lot of them still have closets full of them. And beanie babies must have been a good product, since they still perform just as well today as they did 15 years ago.

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Old 09-24-2016, 06:06 PM   #12
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I guess I'm the odd one -

I run a Boily Blue RV PRO 3700 remote start with > 100 hrs on it in a couple months. Very light (~70lbs) and quiet. It will start the 13.5 on Eco but I know there's a voltage dip to about 90, so I avoid it. Downside is the 2 gal tank. Time will tell but she's a sweetheart so far.

I also have a Honda EU1000 that was purchased shortly after they were introduced (paid $990 and that was a deal) that also still runs on first pull. This will be used when ac (both days of Florida winter) is not needed.

Regular oil changes, air filter, and 100% gas - the corn goes on the grill with hot butter and ground pepper.

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Old 09-24-2016, 06:47 PM   #13
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As I read the responses from the folks on here I have thumbed thru the various Champion generators and it brings me to another question.. If one buys 2 of the 2000 watt generators how does that affect the Noise level? There have been some good points brought up here and when I think of upping to the 3100 or 3400 my wifes asked how will I load it up in the back of the pickup when we leave :-) I thought, well how about a ramp.. but that's just one more thing to think about. Buying a 2000watt is easy to lift and 95% of the time cover everything I want.. then if for any reason I wanted to run the AC, well just hook up Gen 2 and the adapter kit and fire it up... gets lots of power but am I now dealing with alot more Noise?

As for some of the other comments... I agree, the Honda being the leader of the pack for many years and your right, most folks that have bought them are very pleased with them. The new generators of course have no data, although I have read here and other place of folks still cranking Champions for over 5 years.... that's pretty good for me. I wonder how the components on the lower cost units stack up to the Honda build, Like the inverter circuitry.... my guess that is one of the components that would be an issue, but I have yet to hear of anyone complaining about them dying. I do appreciate folks chiming in and I"ll bet a lot of other folks do as well, this is a question I've seen posted on quite a few forums... and it's always there is the I'll only buy Honda or Yamaha type guys.. and there are others that are willing to take a chance with an alternative for a 50% saving... and if it keeps running.. they win, if they die... well, back to square one... but after the 2 years warranty your on your own no matter what one you buy!
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Old 09-25-2016, 10:15 AM   #14
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I have had two of the champion 2000's and a parallel kit for six years. They are slightly louder running as a pair but once you are 50 yards away its hard to tell the difference. They live in the back of my truck all summer. I always use seafoam in my fuel and run the carbs dry when I'm done using them. They have always started within two or three pulls. I change the oil and clean the exhaust screens annually. They will start my ac at sea level, but will not run it where I live at about 5000 ASL. That's not an issue for me as I don't generally run the ac when dry camping. Price was a large factor in my choice and I have been happy with my purchase.
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Old 09-25-2016, 01:56 PM   #15
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Greenman, thanks for the reply, and glad the Champion is working for you, I am reading quite a few responses and posting on the internet that show the units are really stable. I find it interesting to see there is a lot of units out there competing with the Honda/Yamaha, but honestly, none of them get as much of the write ups as the Champion.

Weight is a factor for me, I'd love 1 unit only to deal with, but I just don't want to deal with the weight they have so I"ll probably buy 2 of the Champions.. and many make a good point that if I am not going to be doing alot of heavy use, I can hook up just 1 to charge batteries and the smaller usuage... But, I'll probably buy 2 and the hook up just in the event I need them. My other reason of course, is having two separate units it means I can have them in the event of a power failure at home.. one for the house, and one for the barn...

Now, I will have to check the prices out for the set up, they are all pretty close price wise.. and since Costco does not have the 2000 available right now, I"ll have to source them somewhere else... we have an almost 10% sales tax in our state which adds up and since I am on my own for repairs I guess mail order is fine... there really isn't any serviceing dealers in my area.

I'll keep looking and researching but with the input here it seems it is worth a chance, I did notice that if I purchase at Home Depot I can get a 3 year extended warranty (that starts after the Champion warranty ends) for a reasonable price and that may be appealing as well.

Have a great day.
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Old 09-25-2016, 03:47 PM   #16
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Chiming in...I have the 3100 Champion with remote on/off. I love that feature. It's a tad louder than the big Honda but similar to the Honda Handi.

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Old 09-25-2016, 06:14 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by abarkl View Post
Buy the Champion dual-fuel generators from Costco.com.
They are on sale through 9/25 for $849 with free shipping, and they also have the Champion Parallel kit for $65.

If you change your mind, want your money back after the camping season, or if you have problems with them take them back, no questions asked.

Champion DUAL-FUEL 2800wt Running / 3100wt Peak Digital Inverter Generator, Electric Start, RV Ready, Parallel Capable, CARB & EPA Certified, Low Decibels
Appreciate the heads up, I've got one inbound as we speak. Love the propane option, it's just one more layer of redundancy as I always have propane on camper!
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Old 09-25-2016, 06:59 PM   #18
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I'll throw my few pennies into this, since I've been down a similar road. We camp very similar to you. Generally weekends with hookups (at least electric) and then longer trips in the summer, usually at National Parks with no Hookups. We take it easy on power, but run the pump when we want water, and turn lights on when we want light (new rig is all LED), but don't leave things on when not needed.

We've been at Elkmont for a week, 2 years ago. This year was 2 weeks in Glacier!

We bought a Yamaha 2400 several years ago in order to start doing the no hookup campgrounds. I wanted to be able to run the A/C in a pinch (if it was too hot to sleep while overnighting on the road). I preferred to have a single unit, and didn't want to deal with hooking up 2 generators. The 2400 was the smallest generator that I felt that would run the A/C in a single package. My old fifth had a 13.5 A/C and it ran it without issue. We only needed to do this a handful of times.

I had 2 marine deep cycle batteries back then (wasn't smart about batteries yet). Running the generator for an hour or two during the evenings gave me juice back, but now I know I wasn't putting back what I used and batteries were constantly getting lower, but we'd make it through. Converter wasn't so great in the old rig either.

Fast forward to this year. I have the rig in my signature, am smarter about batteries with two Trojan T-105's in the rig. The 2400 originally wouldn't run the 15k A/C in the new rig, but the addition of a Hard Start Capacitor fixed that. Nothing else can be on while the A/C is running, but it runs it. Again - that is only in a pinch when it's too uncomfortable to sleep on the road on our way to the destination.

Here is the part where I might derail you......

Prepping for the trip to Glacier this year, I got to thinking...... When we are in the parks, we do quite a bit of hiking and are away from the trailer quite a bit. In the old camper, we'd kind of have "generator stress" - planning our day around getting back to the campground for generator hours in order to charge up our batteries.

Around this time, I also started reading about solar and the wheels started turning. So in the weeks leading up to the Glacier trip, I bought a 200 watt Solar Starter kit from Renogy for $350. My plan was to use it as a portable kit and not permanently mount it. I figured that I'd give it a try for a year or two, then decide if I wanted to put panels on the roof, or even continue on with the Solar thing. When we got to Glacier, I would set them up, at first I'd lean them on chairs to optimize collection, but by the end of the trip, I was just leaving them flat on the ground and not moving them.

Let me tell you that the whole family really enjoyed the solar side. I liked that it charged whether we were there or not, the kids liked watching the current and voltage they were putting out and what voltage the battery was at (% charge) and the wife just thought we were cool for having solar.

The panels work while you are gone, and every day, I came back to batteries that we at the 95% mark every day. Even at our first site where our site had too much shade. The only time we ran the generator was to use the microwave, or if the wife wanted to blow dry her hair (a rare camping treat). There was just no worrying about power. I couldn't be happier with them. It doesn't mean my generator is being retired, we'll still bring it, but the panels are just another part of my power strategy when camping with no hookups.

You didn't ask about solar, but I would strongly suggest you consider it, especially if you don't have need for running A/C or Microwave. Or maybe consider both. From what you have shared of your camping style, I think it would work well for you if you wanted to go that route.

As for your original question, I would recommend the Yamaha 2400 without hesitation. I really like being able to run the A/C when it is hot. Even 15 minutes of it on a hot day can be really refreshing. I have nothing against the other brands. Champion didn't have inverter generators when I bought my Yamaha. Would be a tougher choice if I did it today. However, with a Yamaha dealer two miles down the road, it may still sway me towards the blue, for the availability of service if I ever needed it.

If you are interested in the Solar, search for posts under my user name and you'll find more details on what I bought and how I have it put together.
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Old 09-25-2016, 07:23 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by davidki View Post
There have been some good points brought up here and when I think of upping to the 3100 or 3400 my wifes asked how will I load it up in the back of the pickup when we leave :-)
I'll keep mine short. I have a 3100 Champion, it's quite, I can load it myself but normally have the wife help as there are handles on both ends. The best feature is the built in handle and wheels, set it down unfold the handle and walk it like a wheelbarrow. Starts on one or 2 pulls - every time.
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Old 09-25-2016, 10:59 PM   #20
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I have both the 2000 & 3100 watt Champion Inverter Generators but use the 2000 most of the time. They are efficient and dependable and cheaper than the Hondas. I now have a Go Power 120 watt suitcase folding solar panel that I am going to be using and restricting the generator use to cloudy rainy days. And

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