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Old 01-22-2013, 05:21 PM   #1
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Question Generator Question

Good afternoon all. We're new to the forum and were hoping a question could be answered. We've found a 2005 Jay Flight for sale online that we were going to go and take a look at this weekend. The question has to do with the need for a generator. The fridge, water heater and furnace all run off the gas. If we wanted to buy a generator just for charging the batteries for the TT, what size generator would be needed or would one be needed at all (assuming of course we're dry camping). How long do the batteries generally last while dry camping? We are not concerned with running the A/C, we wouldn't use the generator for that. Sorry if the question seems trivial, we're new to this whole world of travel trailers in general, just trying to gather as much information as possible. Thanks again for any help.
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Old 01-22-2013, 05:27 PM   #2
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You can get a Honda 2000 generator for about $1,000. It only weighs about 46 lbs and will power your camper and charge it's battery. It's also very quiet, hence the hefty price tag.

How long the batteries last is too complicated to answer because it all depends on your situation and use. Our generator hours are usually something like 9-1 and then 5-9. Something along those lines. We fire the genny up for all of those hours.
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Old 01-22-2013, 06:49 PM   #3
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A 1000 watt generator will work for charging your batteries. How long will the batteries last is hard to say. If you are running your furnace, the blower will drain your battery in a few days. I have had a battery last 12 + days during the summer. We had LED lights and very limited electric use. Getting an additional battery may work better for you.
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Old 01-22-2013, 06:50 PM   #4
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Do you plan on running the microwave?
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Old 01-22-2013, 08:23 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sean4nene View Post
Good afternoon all. We're new to the forum and were hoping a question could be answered. We've found a 2005 Jay Flight for sale online that we were going to go and take a look at this weekend. The question has to do with the need for a generator. The fridge, water heater and furnace all run off the gas. If we wanted to buy a generator just for charging the batteries for the TT, what size generator would be needed or would one be needed at all (assuming of course we're dry camping). How long do the batteries generally last while dry camping? We are not concerned with running the A/C, we wouldn't use the generator for that. Sorry if the question seems trivial, we're new to this whole world of travel trailers in general, just trying to gather as much information as possible. Thanks again for any help.
I use a champion 2000 watt inverter generator....
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Old 01-22-2013, 08:37 PM   #6
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Batteries, now that is a deep subject and is very difficult to answer how long they will last. It really depends on what you want to run will boondocking.

The first critical item to determine is what type, size and how many batteries you have. A true deep cycle will last the longer than a dual purpose battery. Then do you have two 6 volt golf cart batteries, wired in series? Typicallt they will last even longer. Basically it comes down to amp hours.

Second; what type of load will you applying to the battery? Running the furnace use a lot of power for the fan. How many lights are you using? What other power loads are you using.

With all that said, I have a small Interstate 12V dual purpose marine battery (icky battery), it is not optimal for an RV. When we first pickup our TT last year we went out for a 3 day weekend and the battery lasted close to 40 hours running nearly every incandescent light on in the trailer in the trailer when every we were in it, including the stereo. We have switched to LED lighting, but have not really tested it yet. I fully expect we will be able to go 6 days without being too conservative now with LEDs.

If you are very conservative, I have gone for 6 days without a charge up utilizing incandescent bulbs, and the gas for the refrigerator. We did used candles at night.
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Old 01-22-2013, 09:42 PM   #7
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2 votes for the Champion with Inverter. Check out supergenproducts.com They usually have some factory reconditioned 2000 watt units for $399 and they are really really quiet.

They also have a new unit that is a great deal. I wish this had been available before I bought two of the others. http://supergenproducts.com/shop/310...erter-presale/

Now after all that, if all you are looking to do is charge your batteries... nothing else, then I'd go to Harbor Freight and pick up a set of solar panels.

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Old 01-22-2013, 10:21 PM   #8
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Thank you for the responses so far. From what I have read so far I would get 2 batteries run in parallel for additional battery capacity. I don't think a $1000 dollar generator is something I want to budget for but 4-500$ I would think about. With that no we do not care about the microwave, I have been a "roughing it" camper for a long time where a flashlight, lantern and camp stove are the luxuries of the camp site. A couple of posts I think are really insightful as to how long we could go with conservative use and two batts in parallel. We are thinking 3-4 day trips being the average and we could probably handle that fine. I think a generator is in our future maybe just not yet. The champion you guys have spoke about sounds like something to look into as this would charge the batteries and let us have some A/C power while it is running, is that correct? Also how does that connect to the TT as I do not see the 30amp type connector, can you run a standard extension from it to the TT? Again thanks for the replies you guys are very helpful!
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Old 01-22-2013, 10:34 PM   #9
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Watch Craig's List. I got my Honda 2k for $600 from CL, in fact I see them quite often. I really like my Honda, absolutely no complaints.

I connect the TT 30A cord to the GenSet using a 15/20A-30A doggone.

We run Dual 12V CostCo Batteries. With heater use I charge daily, maybe not necessary but I have the Honda so I use it. With out heater I charge every other to every 3rd day. We are not real conservative with lights or other 12v power needs.
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Old 01-22-2013, 11:27 PM   #10
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I boondock as well. I wrote up what i did to maximize my batteries below. I have a Honda 2k as it would run the AC on my old trailer - today i would buy a Honda 1k.

-Chak
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