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Old 09-14-2019, 10:59 AM   #1
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Generator low power

94 in GEORGIA and we head out for a trip. First the dash A/C paused and came back on blowing warm air. No problem...crank up the generator and use coach A /Cs, right? They came on slowly then nothing. Checked breakers and did not look flipped. Flipped off and back on anyway and came on but very little air. Turned off the rear A/C and closed the bathroom door to shut off rear area. Front A/C putting put out little air and still burning up, we trudged on to FLORIDA, where the air was steaming. We made it here drenched in sweat and very ill. At least the breeze was better than our air conditioned coach.
We have A 2004 Dutch Star DP with diesel generator. Has to be the generator for after connecting to shore power, A/C came on like gangbusters. All food in fridge ruined.
Generator sounds good, cranks right up, exercised and serviced, just not enough power.
Any thoughts on what to check before calling mobile mechanic? Or replacing the thing?! Thanks!
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Old 09-14-2019, 11:21 AM   #2
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What make & model of generator? It's unusual for a genset of that year (or later) to continue running if it is not producing proper power. All the Cummins/Onan diesel gensets are self-diagnosing. Is it maybe a Kohler or PowerTec?


I'd check the voltage and frequency of the generator power before doing anything else. You can do that at any power outlet when the genset is running. Should be very close to 120v and 60 Hz. If you lack a VOM with frequency (Hz) capability, get a Kill-A-Watt device that analyses power as well as recording wattage.Not real expensive and a good tool to own.

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Old 09-14-2019, 12:07 PM   #3
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The generator may need new fuel filters.
It could be struggling to make 120 volts under load.

The auto transfer switch will stay connected above 90 volts but that's not good for the air conditioners.

If you have a display panel, with volts, get the generator running and monitor the volts as you add electrical draw.

I'm assuming you have a 120 volt fridge and no inverter to run it. Otherwise why would the food spoil ?

If its a gas/electric fridge, you may also have a 12 volt problem. You need 12 volts to run the fridge on gas. You also need 12 volts to run the thermostats for the air conditioners.
Have you checked for a thrown belt on the chassis A/C ? That could effect your alternator belt and battery charging.
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Old 09-14-2019, 04:31 PM   #4
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Like Twinboat said, you really need to see what the voltage is. Perhaps start generator and see voltage...if 120 then turn on one a/c and see voltage. If still 120 then turn on second a/c and see voltage.
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Old 09-14-2019, 05:56 PM   #5
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I would not run your a/c on genny if you have low voltage, could damage compressor.
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Old 09-15-2019, 07:47 AM   #6
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Generator low power

The generator is Quietpack 7D Powered by Guardian Diesel System Guardian 750. 120/140 volt, 62.5/31.2 amp.
Haven't checked anything yet but breaker and fuse on generator. No manual. Will look for fuel filter. Coolant fill tube cap cracked when trying to open. Thanks for all of your help. Refrigerator is gas/electric. Running on Gas and getting cold when we left, then switched to A.C. when gen set cranked. Did not think about fridge because we were so miserably hot. We had bought 10 lbs of ice for fridge and when we ate lunch, nothing spoiled. Will let you know about voltage.
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Old 09-15-2019, 12:26 PM   #7
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There are a couple of reasons a generator may not put out proper voltage or frequency, mostly having to do with an inability to maintain the proper RPMs. Dirty fuel filter is one, faulty voltage regulator and/or speed governor another. Worn or dirty slip rings a third. Once the voltage readouts are available, we can assist in the further diagnosis.
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Old 09-15-2019, 04:38 PM   #8
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My Generac is putting out 38 volts on both L1 and L2 . Any ideas?
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Old 09-16-2019, 09:52 AM   #9
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Generator low power

Checked voltage. With following on:
Microwave 150v
Refrigerator 136v
A.C. #1 95v
A.C. #2 103v
Inverter 86v in off position

Obviously there is a drop in voltage but knew that to begin with.

Does that solve anything?

Thanks for help
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