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Old 05-24-2012, 10:44 AM   #1
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Generator Usage

We are new to the world of hybrids and generators. We have a new X20E and a new 2000 Honda generator. We will be dry camping this weekend and would like to use the generator at times.

Here is my question - Am assuming that once we put in the oil and gas, we power up the generator and then plug the camper plug into the generator. Is there something we are missing or is it that simply. We don't have to disconnect the battery or anything - right?

We are going to take the generator out of the box and look at it tonight then it is off for our first long weekend in the camper.

Thanks for all of your help. We just don't want to mess anything up.

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Old 05-24-2012, 10:47 AM   #2
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The generator will charge the battery so you wouldn't disconnect it. You would need an adapter to connect the camPer to the generator though.

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Old 05-24-2012, 05:03 PM   #3
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You will need a 30 am to 15 amp adapter. The generator only has outlets like you have at home. I recommend adding "Stable" to the gasoline. Stable helps to stabilize the gas. To keep the gas from breaking down. Also the generator runs better with mid-grade gas. Enjoy your trip.
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2010 Jayco 17Z Ex-Port
2004 Ford Explorer V8 with the tow package
2010 Camping Stats
Nights Camping 132 - Nights Camping in My Z 102
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Old 05-24-2012, 05:48 PM   #4
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You have to careful about thinking you will be allowed to use your generator anytime you want to. It is really something to consider here on the East side of the US. Most camp grounds including the Natl Parks etc have generator restricted use time in place. Alot of places only allow the use of generators from 8AM-10AM in the mornings and then again 4:30PM to 7:30PM. This doesnt give you alot of time to use your air conditioners etc .

What alot of us do is make sure we have out RV trailers beefed-up on the battery side of things where we can operate all of the 12VDC appliances we would like to use off the batteries and 120VAC appliances off the Inverters. This is a not a simple thing to incorparate but is doable.

The idea here is run all the things you want use and be able to make it through the one day/night visit and then at 8AM the next morning be able to re-charge your batteries to a 90% charge state in the two-three ours aloowed to run the generators. Once you are charged back up to the 90% charge state you can do all of this all over again for the next day/night visit.

The only thing you lose doing this is the air conditioner and high wattage microwaves etc.

You have to do several changes to some of your equipment to able to do this like making sure you have a smart-mode converter/charger unit, change out the automotive lights for LED lights, run additional batteries and larger battery cables, plan what you can run and not run so that you wont completely drain your batteries below their 50% charge state.

The RV Trailer Shore Power Cable can then be connected to a 2KW Honda Generator using a RV30A-15A 18-inch long adaptor which will power up your RV trailer to be able to run the on-board smart-mode Converter/Charger unit to re-charge your batteries. This is the game plan and it works out pretty good. We can do almost everything we normally do at electric site hook-ups including watching HDTV, using electric blankets, all the lighting we need inside and outside, charge up cellphones and computers, still have some battery left over at day break the next morning.

More things to think about haha... The western part of US is more relaxed about the use of generators as there is more open space I guess..

Always check with your camp ground about their policies of the use of generators so that you get a surprise when you arrive and not be able to run them as long as you thought you might be able to.

We probably camp off the power grid at the National Parks more than we camp at regular hook-up sites here on the East side of the US.
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Old 05-25-2012, 01:01 AM   #5
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Minor advice on the generator...anytime you can eliminate or reduce the load on the generator upon start-up and/or shut down, the better it is on your generator.

In simple terms, try not to have every single electrical item on in the camper when you start the generator and simply shove the plug into the generator.

I prefer to fire up the generator with the breaker off on the generator, or cord unplugged, let it warm up just a tad or at least let the rpm stabilize, and with minimal items on in the trailer, turn the breaker on/plug in the cord. Then bring on the load(s) gradually.

We had a generator get toasted on a race trailer when someone shut the generator off while it was under a load that was over 50% of the rated wattage. I don't have the technical description of why, but it cooked it.

I have now had probably 5-7 varieties of generators and using the steps above, have never had an issue. Simple to do to save a major expense and headache.

Greg D.
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Old 05-25-2012, 05:28 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by tlhdoc View Post
You will need a 30 am to 15 amp adapter. The generator only has outlets like you have at home. I recommend adding "Stable" to the gasoline. Stable helps to stabilize the gas. To keep the gas from breaking down. Also the generator runs better with mid-grade gas. Enjoy your trip.
Tracy, just FYI... I have a Honda EU2000i Companion model that includes a 30A receptacle as shown in this picture.

Mike, Sue, Sissy and Little Man

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Old 05-25-2012, 10:00 AM   #7
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New generator owner.. here are a few things you should know...
before you turn off the gen unplug the RV and let the gen run for a min or two sort of to "cool down"

NEVER let the gen run out of gas when powering the RV.. as it dies it will send spikes of power through the system that can damage your elect components..

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