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Post Info TOPIC: Which Generator will work best for us??


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Which Generator will work best for us??


We just bought a HR Presidential Jefferson 363re.  It has an area for a generator with the dimensions approximately 33x17x26deep.  We have a diesel truck and propane on the 5er.  We need advice on what type generator to purchase as we will be doing a lot of boondocking.  We are willing to have a gas/tool box on the truck but that can not be a perm connection to the genny.  If we stay with diesel or gas either way it will have to be pumped from the holding tank on the truck to the 5er.  If we go with propane it will be too expensive.  Please feel free to advise us what you would do or did.  We do not want to make a costly mistake.  We would like to have at least a 5500. 

Thanks Paul and Sondra



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Paul and Sondra

2014 Chevy Silverado LT 3500 Dually Diesel 4x4 long bed!!  2014 Holiday Rambler Presidential 5er Jefferson 363RE!!



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Just my 2 cents! I would go with diesel from a bed tank which I have seen a flex hose routed to the Genny on board the Towed unit!
Especially since the truchk is diesel you will never accidently mix fuels. Worked as a mechanic and seen this happen a few times. That can mess up a good day real quick!

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I think on the lines of Pierre too!.....if you have a diesel tank/Toolbox in the bed of the truck a simple quick connect line and a splitter should do the job and you would only have one fuel to worry about......I just dont like the mess and fumes that come along with that type hook-up.

wouldnt solar& a battery bank....with a small genny for back up work better for boondocking.....less money over all and definitely more adoptable...

I have 4000 watts onboard came with the rig....normally dont use it.....boondocking its not efficient (fuel hog)
I have panels on the roof & 6 batteries(overkill) and a small 2200 watt generator thats a fuel sipper.....the only time its run durring boondocking is for a faster battery charge on bad days and for power in the am when the microwave or Coffee is on.....

just cant picture 5500 watts needed for boondocking of course my definition of boondocking and yours are most likely different

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I like diesel. The only problem I find is that diesel generators are expensive. I have 250 gal diesel capacity so it is the most prudent choice. The problem is that the Onan QD6000 is way too expensive right now.

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Thanks to all of you thus far. So if a 5500 is not necessary and we could get by with a smaller genny. What would be the right size 3000, 4000? Also, if the genny was diesel which would make sense and I could run a line from the tool tank to the genny, what would I do when we are not in the area with the truck. Fuel it through the genny gas tank? Oh one more bc I am new and trying to understand. Does the genny have to be a certain type, what I mean is, are there portable that you would not want in there appose to a permanent style?
We have looked at Honda 3000, for just two people would this do the trick or need I look a bit larger?

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Paul and Sondra

2014 Chevy Silverado LT 3500 Dually Diesel 4x4 long bed!!  2014 Holiday Rambler Presidential 5er Jefferson 363RE!!



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Size of the genny is going to depend on needs.....

some people go out and buy 10,000 watt generators and only consume a 1000 watts while they use it.....others buy 2500 watts and want to know why it wont run 2 A/C units the coffee pot and the microwave all at the same time.

What do you consider boondocking?..........if you consider boondocking running your generator 24/7 to run the A/C's and all the comforts of full hookups ....then yes your going to need 5500 watts + to get by.......if its just to run basics and recharge batteries well a small 2 or 3000 watt will fit the bill comfortably ....you could always start with a small honda that could be paired in the future.

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We are not lost in the Woods.....Just Extreme boondocking!!!!!!



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One more question, Does the genny have to be in the genny compartment? Or can I install it in a larger storage area? So confused!!


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2014 Chevy Silverado LT 3500 Dually Diesel 4x4 long bed!!  2014 Holiday Rambler Presidential 5er Jefferson 363RE!!



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Generator should be installed in an insulated fire retardant area that has adequate ventilation for it......any other way could lead to a fire or death from fumes.....

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We are not lost in the Woods.....Just Extreme boondocking!!!!!!



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I would purchase the Honda 3000is or the Yamaha 3000iseb.  Our generator usage depends on the time of year (Temps), if we boondock in the winter months and use our Honda 2000i, it's light, quiet, and extremely fuel efficient.  If we are boondocking in the summer months I usually take the Yamaha 3000is (still a quiet unit and great on fuel just a little heavy) so we can run the A/C if needed.  

I'm guessing your RV has two A/C units, if you are wanting to run both units you will need the Honda EU6500ISA or Yamaha EF6300isDE.

As far a generator placement, we leave ours in the back of the pickup and use a Kryptonite Lock & Cable to prevent theft.  We purchased our Honda 2000i online (Alamia) brand new for $875.00 and no sales tax.  The Yamaha 3000is we purchased (new) from an individual that bought new at the Quartzsite RV show and never used it.  We paid $1400 for the Yamaha.  

If you check Craigslist and your local paper you can find great deals on barely used units.

 

http://www.wisesales.com/generators-1/honda-generators-1/honda-eu-series.html

http://www.yamahamotorsports.com/powerproducts/generator/sizing.aspx

http://www.yamahamotorsports.com/powerproducts/products/modelhome/444/0/home.aspx

http://www.alamia.us/Honda_Generators_s/987.htm 



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Depends if you want it built-in the trailer compartment or mounted in the back of the truck.

I have a Honda EU3000is and it is very quiet and fuel efficient with the eco-throttle. I use to use it in my stacker race car trailer. It will run one a/c.

I had a Jayco 27' Baja trailer and it had a gasoline Onan built in. It was not as quiet as the Honda. The compartment in the Jayco was bottomless c/w vented door for air flow(we'd still run with the door open).

Did you ask the dealer of the RV what they recommend? Like others have said, if you are not sure and install and operate incorrectly could be fatal with carbon monoxide.

 



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We have a 2014 Landmark and Bill is leaning toward a Honda EU3000is. He wants to somehow permanently locate it in the generator compartment (the unit is generator prepped) and find a away to hook it up to the start wiring so we can start it from inside. He realizes he will have to vent the exhaust away from the unit somehow. He did look into the smaller Honda that you can parallel, but you have to go out and pull start those, he would like to not have to do that if possible. He has been reading a bunch of different blogs, etc. trying to figure out the best plan.

Don't know if this helps at all, but good luck with your decision.

Kelly

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I bought 2 Honda 2000's to parallel together. They provide a little more power than the 3000 but you have to pull start them. I wanted these because of the size and weight. As of now we don't plan to be FT boondockers and wanted a generator that I could handle by myself. These won't power the whole 50 amp rig but will run most of it.

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You can couple (2)two of the EU3000is Hondas also. They are electric start and pull. They do have a remote start available for them also. The big thing is then you're having to service two units. Not to mention the initial purchase of everything. However it may be more suitable for some.................Once again they are super quiet and fuel efficient. The exhaust just flows out of a rear vent, you don't even see an exhaust pipe.

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Paul and Sondra

Assuming you want a true built in 5,500 watt generator let’s ask a different question for a second as to LP being expensive to operate and not a good choice.   How much are you really going to use the generator?  If a lot, then perhaps, yes, gas or diesel is the best choice albeit more trouble in a fiver as far as either having a tank in the fiver or plumbing fuel to it from the pickup.

However, if you are not really going to use it a lot keep in mind LP generators don’t have the problems gas or even diesel sometimes do with the fuel in the genny going stale in the fuel system of the genny. I didn't say always.  An LP can sit for months and will start right up. Sometimes a gas or diesel won’t for various reasons.  Sometimes they will be just fine.  It just depends.

All I am saying is to consider how much you are really going to use the genny before you go gas or diesel in a fiver.  Motorhomes are a completely different discussion.

We use LP with a Onan 5500 and in 7 years the LP genny never failed to start and it is a lot “cleaner” operation than either gas or diesel in a fiver in my opinion – which is what you were asking.

BTW, I fully agree diesel for long term operation is superior in almost all regards.  I'm just commenting to make sure you really need the kind of more continuous service a diesel is best suited for.

Bill



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While this wouldn't be a factor with a diesel generator, with the gas or LPG generators there is an issue of the engines running richer on fuel when one is at higher altitudes.  We have a Honda EU3000Is generator that works very well for us.  However, when we were boondocking with it, we had to change the plugs about every three days, because of plug fouling, with only using the generator for about 6 hours per day.  Now, with an LPG Onan generator, the ones we saw were equipped with a "valve" that one could adjust for the different altitudes.

A Honda EU3000Is will only run one air conditioner and a few smaller things.  Two could be put in parallel but one would still be short of 50 amps.  If I remember right, the working amperage of the 3000 is just over 23 amps.  Thus, two in parallel would be around 46 amps.

With that in mind, the Onan 5500 is also roughly 46 amps.  However, the Onan 6500 is around 54 amps.

Terry



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Terry:

Not sure about the LP Onan you are referring to, but our 5500 Onan, the one found in a lot of factory installed RV’s, has never had a mixture issue at altitude.  We’ve operated it at 9,200 feet without issue as there is no need with LP to adjust the mixture. In fact, our model has no mixture adjustment like the gas version of the same unit according to the manual.

The unit runs so clean I’ve never had to replace the spark plugs.  Even the soot filter, when I pulled it last year, had no residue to clean off.

I’m not selling one over the other as such, just reporting our experience. But our LP genny, in light to moderate fiver RV use, has just has been a lot less trouble overall than the gas and diesel units I have used.  But I add, if it is a Motorhome, due to the convenience of the vehicle fuel tank and the higher use when traveling, gas or diesel is probably a better practical choice.

BTW, the 46 amps quoted is total but split between two poles giving 28 amps per leg. So you do have to keep the loads balanced.



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If you are considering a generator to save money it's good to note that a typical 3,000 watt inverter generator uses about a 1/3 to 1/2 gallon/hr or about $1.5/hr on average. So if you plan on running it 24/7 (away from other campers) the fuel cost will be around $35/day - more than a typical FHU RV park or CG, especially if paying monthly. If you can limit your genny use to around 8 hrs/day this translates to a more modest $12/day for gas costs. Plus you have the logistics of hauling all that gas, filling the tank and of course genny repair and maint. costs, not to mention the constant noise - even for quieter models like the Honda. I prefer to camp in moderate climates when boondocking where AC use is not mandatory. I only have a 5,000 BTU AC in my Aliner which I can run with a tiny 1,200 watt genny. Still I try to only use my genny for about 2 hrs battery charging every other day, to stretch my fuel use while minimizing noisy time, in consideration of my neighbors.

For full-timer use, I like Lucky Mikes plan of the dual 2000 watt Hondas for several reasons. You only make the wattage you need running both gennys only for peak electric demands. By alternating the use of 2 smaller units you increase their life expectancy, make more efficient use of fuel and always have a back-up if one fails to start one day. Yes you must pull start them, but this is relatively easy, plus they are much more portable and save weight compared to a heavy battery start 3,000 watt model Honda or Yamaha (which would be my second choice, BTW) if on a larger budget for FT use. If choosing a bigger electric start model, I would permanently mount it on the tongue of my TT, as I've seen done before, on a stand over my propane tanks. If I had a fiver, it would be on a small rack behind the bumper, welded to the rear of the frame (away from the bedroom as much as possible.)

Chip

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Wow, so much to digest and so much incredibly good advice. I like the rear bumper mount but I think we have a back cap and would have to have a mounting area installed, still a great idea. Propane could be our choice, but i would have to figure out the amount used daily and try to be as frugal as possible. Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to suggest to us which route to take. We will be pondering this for a few more weeks and hopefully make the right decision that will assist us the most.
Paul and Sondra

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Paul:

The Onan 5500’s use about 1 gallon of fuel per hour under nominal loads.  However, the LP is not quite as efficient, but a lot more convenient in a fiver as I said.  LP costs are all over the place now as you know. In the last 6 months I’ve seen it in the $1.98 to $4+ per gallon in our travels around the US.   A 40 lb LP tank holds ~9.5 gallons depending on temperature.

Yes, it is expensive to run a 5500 watt generator any extended length of time regardless of the fuel and LP is more expensive than gas or diesel.  Small Honda types are much less expensive per hour, cost less, and provide less power and are not “one-button” start and change over easy.  It depends on your needs.  (BTW, I strongly recommend against inexpensive “Home Depot” or the like generators.  Their electrical output is very “dirty” and can damage electronics, including a fridge, in the rig.  “Ask me how I know this first hand.”  There is a reason they are “inexpensive.”)

This is a personal / use choice and we just provide information so you can choose what best suits you.  Neither is wrong and both will work.

IF you are going with a built in 5500 watt Onan  just make sure you are really going to use a generator a lot, IMO, before going to diesel or gas in a fiver.  Experience with all three choices speaking here.



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Paul like el rojo I use two Honda 2000s I like this set up because the 2000 are quite, lite about 45# I think anyway I can move them around by my self. Both will fit in my tool box and are easy to remove and setup. Most of the time I only run one if the weather is cool enough to not need the A/C. The one 2000 will help charge the batteries, we run one for a couple hours in the morning so we can use the coffee pot & elect skittle for breakfast. Also we have a small elect freezer and 2 hours in the morning and 3-4 at night as we watch TV & charge the batteries will keep the freezer cold if we don't open it too many times.
If it does get too hot we hook the 2000 together of course if it stays hot too long we just move on down the road to cooler places or to a park & shore power. Our 5th wheel uses 30 amps and the 2000 will run most of what we have, we do shut off the A/C if we want to use the micro wave. Going down the road I have installed wiring so I can run one Honda in the truck bed to run the small freezer if needed. Anyway works for me.
Billy Bob

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