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Old 05-14-2016, 07:50 PM   #1
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5.5 Onan Generator on New 5ver and 2nd A/C

Buying either a KZ Sportsman 355TH or a Wolfpack325Pack13. I had a list of options I wanted to roll in with the purchase. But relevant to this thread these two items were on my short list:

Second A/C
Generator

I received some really honest advice from a KZ dealer that I didn't get from the other dealer, and I want to follow it up with some other owners experience.

1. He doesn't recommend Onan's or generators that actually sit in the generator compartment because they're too loud during sleeping hours and consume too much fuel. He suggested a Honda whisperquiet and carry it in the Garage. This seemed like some really great advice to me, does anyone else find this to be true? I would probably pick a yamaha if I had the choice as I have a good relationship with the local yamaha dealer.

2. The second A/C is not required if the primary unit is a 15k high efficiency unit, and you're not traveling to the southwest. I'm on the fence with this advice, I'm willing to try it out and upgrade later if it's an issue, but I do plan to spend plenty of time in Florida. My 30ft Surveyor couldn't keep up with a 13.5k unit during the day. I'm sure the newer toyhaulers are better built/insulated, but the two trailers I'm looking at are 10 feet longer and several feet taller. Thats a great deal of interior volume to cool off.

2a. 50amp service cannot reliably run two A/C units. A/C units + inverter leaves very little left for anything else. I see folks with triple A/C units, what's the point? Do they run them in a zoned pattern?
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Old 05-14-2016, 08:26 PM   #2
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I would always opt for 2ACs from the factory, if you are ordering. 50a svc WILL run both ACs reliably and other items also at same time.
As to the built-in vs portable, a Honda big enough to run 2ACs is going to be quite heavy to take in/out of garage--we have the 5.5k Onan and it has served us well for 9 years, but yep, does consume a lot of propane. I have set up a hose to connect to a third propane tank to use if I know I'll be using the ACs a lot--this keeps me from having to take the tank out of the compartment to refill.
I think the 3AC trailers have a 6.5k gen or bigger, and can run all 3 at same time.
Joe
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Old 05-14-2016, 08:54 PM   #3
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I would always opt for 2ACs from the factory, if you are ordering. 50a svc WILL run both ACs reliably and other items also at same time.
As to the built-in vs portable, a Honda big enough to run 2ACs is going to be quite heavy to take in/out of garage--we have the 5.5k Onan and it has served us well for 9 years, but yep, does consume a lot of propane. I have set up a hose to connect to a third propane tank to use if I know I'll be using the ACs a lot--this keeps me from having to take the tank out of the compartment to refill.
I think the 3AC trailers have a 6.5k gen or bigger, and can run all 3 at same time.
Joe
Wouldn't be ordering, but having the dealer add a second low profile a/c unit with a heat pump. Trailer is already prepped for the install of a second unit. Do you run the Generator when sleeping? Does it normally run right under the bedroom of the 5ver? This is a gasoline generator and pulls from a shared fueltank with the fuel pump station in the back of the toyhauler.
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Old 05-15-2016, 05:32 AM   #4
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My Air conditioner right over the bed makes way more noise than the generator below the bed. Built in is the only way to go IMO. A 5.5 onan will easily run 2 AC's plus other stuff. On the units with 3 ac's, a 5.5 will not run all 3 without some type of power management system. The portable in the garage would take up a lot of toy room that I need for toys. My 15K in my Fuzion will not cool the trailer at hot temps + 90 degrees. If I was going to keep it, I would add the second AC. I would not count on the newer units being better built/insulated.
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Old 05-15-2016, 05:52 AM   #5
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6500 Onan/Cumming LP Commercial runs all three AC's of course run the WH on propane.

No issue with ours under bed running. Yes it's thirsty but does the job VERY well.

Two AC's min no matter where you are.
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Old 05-15-2016, 07:12 AM   #6
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Dealer is trying to sell you a unit that he's had in stock for too long....
-2 AC's are needed on any size toy hauler. The amount of cubic feet to cool demands it.
- A toy hauler will probably have a fuel station. Normally a second tank is installed to run a gas genny. More efficient than the LP model- get it with the genny
- A 50amp unit is actually 100amp- there are 2-50amp wires in the service, plus your neutral and ground. A 30 amp service only has 1 -30 wire in the cord. 50 amp is more than double the capacity of the 30. Most larger 5th wheels and all the big motorcoaches are 50amp- look at all the power they use.

The dealer is lying to you-
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Old 05-15-2016, 06:27 PM   #7
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ALL good points above. I never run the AC above the bed at night. Too noisy. I cool down the bedroom area real good before bedtime, then only run the main AC at night. Works good for us. But 2 AC units if important! Rarely ever run the AC on propane. I'll settle on the two exhaust fans (bathroom & kitchen) first with the bed window open bringing in outside air over the bed.
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Old 05-15-2016, 07:07 PM   #8
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I disagree with all 3 suggestions your dealer rep made.
You want the built-in genny
You want the 2nd AC
50 amp service runs both AC's fine, as well as everything else in every RV built since 50 amp became the standard service
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Old 05-15-2016, 09:03 PM   #9
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I agree. You want the generator. You are already more than half way there having a fuel supply for it. This is one of the biggest hurdles for 5th wheels. The 2nd AC will not only cool your RV better, it will add a level of redundancy. We have slept in the middle of the pits at several race venues, The AC in the MBR not only drowns out the generator noise, but creates a form of white noise.
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Old 05-15-2016, 09:13 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rollondown View Post
- A 50amp unit is actually 100amp- there are 2-50amp wires in the service, plus your neutral and ground. A 30 amp service only has 1 -30 wire in the cord. 50 amp is more than double the capacity of the 30. Most larger 5th wheels and all the big motorcoaches are 50amp- look at all the power they use.

The dealer is lying to you-
This is very incorrect. A 50 amp service is actually two 30 amp circuits. Believe me I know from first hand experience as I rewired our AC breaker panel when installing solar. There are two separate 30 amp legs in ours and I had the inverter feed one and straight shore power the other. Then distributed circuits so only the ones I wanted to be fed inverter AC were on the one leg, while those I did NOT want to get inverter AC were on the other. Also, many campgrounds have ganged 30 amp breakers on the 50 amp outlet.

As to needing two ACs - if the rig has a dark finish, you'll certainly need them. We've been through up to 114 degree weather in our 38' mostly white Montana w/one 15k btu AC. Found that with plugs in all vents and double thick bubble mylar sheets of insulation in all the windows, we could get a 19 degree drop in inside temps. While a bit too hot even with fans going during the day, it worked fine for night.

Since you're getting a toy hauler, why not put a gas one with a wheel kit in the bay & wheel it out when you want to use it. We've a $300 Harbor Freight 3400 watt running, 4k watt peak that works fine & is as quiet as two ganged inverter types, but only use it occasionally. When we brig it on trips I put it in the truck bed. A bit of a grunt, but I can still get it up there at age 70.
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Old 05-15-2016, 09:51 PM   #11
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On our first travel trailer we were told to forget the second AC... huge mistake! Just remember that you'll be lucky to get a 15-20 degree drop in temp with 1 AC. So if your ANYWHERE I'm the US where temps can get up to the 100 degree point, expect the interior to only get around 80-85 degrees with 1 AC (of course there are other variables that effect that). Also remember that the dealership isn't the one that has to spend time in the RV when it leaves their lot. Another huge benefit, which has already been stated" is the 50amp connection.

Remember, most "honest" dealers only appear so because they are telling you that you don't need features that their "in stock" inventory doesnt have OR that they know will put you so far over your budget that you won't buy from them OR might make you want to wait for an ordered unit which will delay a sale and slow down turn around time on their instock stuff.
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Old 05-16-2016, 07:42 AM   #12
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This is very incorrect. A 50 amp service is actually two 30 amp circuits.
I respectfully disagree. Rollondown has it right. A 50A service is 2 x 50A, giving you 100A. It is essentially 50A @240V or 100A @ 120V.
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Old 05-16-2016, 07:59 AM   #13
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Did you say a 40' trailer with 1 AC? I agree it may not be "honest" advice. Our 35' has 2 AC's standard and we use them both. Trailers get hot and retain the heat! As others said everything will work if you're on shore power but 2 AC's may not work with a portable generator. I don't know about the Onan. I decided it was too much expense, noise, fuel cost and storage space. I went with a big 7000 Honda. I've had both Yamaha and Honda - Honda is much more quiet, reliable and efficient. My 7000 watt Honda is quieter and uses less fuel than a 2000 watt Yamaha. It can run at 25% which makes it more efficient than anything I've seen. However it's 30 amp and I did trip the breaker when I had the TV, microwave on and turned on the second AC. Still I'm very happy with the generator and the fact that we can use it for a few hours on a gallon of gas.
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Old 05-16-2016, 08:29 AM   #14
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Wouldn't be ordering, but having the dealer add a second low profile a/c unit with a heat pump. Trailer is already prepped for the install of a second unit. Do you run the Generator when sleeping? Does it normally run right under the bedroom of the 5ver? This is a gasoline generator and pulls from a shared fueltank with the fuel pump station in the back of the toyhauler.
The "honest" guy is seriously lying to you and pulling out all the sales tactics. He is doing everything he feels he needs to do to get you to buy a unit he has instock. The biggest lie is the claim that 50amp won't run both AC units. Total BS. You can run everything in a fifth wheel and then some from a 50amp connection. 30amp no way, but 50amp all day!
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