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Old 08-17-2014, 11:52 AM   #1
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Generator

we just purchased a fifth wheel Solitude by Grand Design and I need a generator, it did not come prep for a genie, so my option is a Onan Lp 5,500 that would coast around 6,500 installed, or 2 Honda's loop together for 4000W or the Yamaha 3000W. I really like the Yamaha because it has remote start but concerned abut not being big enough, the remote start on the Yamaha would be great for my wife, any suggestions?
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Old 08-17-2014, 11:57 AM   #2
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How many things do you want to power with the generator? What is the total load? Do you have one AC or two? Is the refrigerator a residential type? How many and what type batteries do you have?
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Old 08-17-2014, 12:01 PM   #3
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the refer is Dometic, so no not residential, 2 AC units one for the living room one for the bedroom, all i want to run is TV, lights, microwave and maybe one of the AC units,
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Old 08-17-2014, 12:01 PM   #4
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Generator

If you installed the Onan propane generator you can also get it with remote start

http://www.cumminsonan.com/autostart/

"The Cummins Onan EC-30W is a wireless generator autostart with the following benefits:

Remotely starts and stops a generator from up to 100 ft away
Compatible with all current model Cummins Onan RV generators
Easy for any RV owner to install; instructions included (see how to install)
Digitally encrypted code ensures remote starts only your generator
Rechargeable and can be wall mounted
Automatic generator turn on to meet air conditioning demands for up to four units
Regularly monitors and displays battery levels and provides power to the inverter to charge batteries
Unique "look-ahead" feature tops off battery prior to "quiet time"
Easily program your own "quiet time" hours and battery charging preferences
Automatically starts/stops generator on low/full batteries
Displays generator hour meter, maintenance reminders and diagnostic text messages for easy troubleshooting
Safety start inhibits automatic generator starting in unsafe conditions
To learn more about power management also read our guide RV Generator Load Management Basics 893 KB. To learn more about the EC-30W see our answers to common EC-30W AutoStart questions."

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Old 08-17-2014, 12:02 PM   #5
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I have 2 6volt batteries and want to add 2 more and still need to get a inverter.
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Old 08-17-2014, 12:05 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul camper View Post
the refer is Dometic, so no not residential, 2 AC units one for the living room one for the bedroom, all i want to run is TV, lights, microwave and maybe one of the AC units,
How Big an AC unit , and how many watts microwave?

You are on the edge in any case.

I have a 3000 ISEB and it can run my 700 watt microwave and my 1 - 13.5 AC unit in my toy hauler but not much more.

Even with the boost feature it still worked better when I put a hard start capacitor on it.

UD
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Old 08-17-2014, 12:06 PM   #7
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the problem with the Onan is I'm going to drop 6,500 hundred bucks plus the remote switch, trying to spend a little less and wondering if I can make due with a Yamaha 3000W
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Old 08-17-2014, 12:21 PM   #8
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Generator

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul camper View Post
the problem with the Onan is I'm going to drop 6,500 hundred bucks plus the remote switch, trying to spend a little less and wondering if I can make due with a Yamaha 3000W

The issues I see are the Onan will be installed and so not a risk to thieves....also able to be started at any time since no setup or tear down. It draws from the propane tanks you already have, so no gasoline to buy, store, or pour into the generator.

The Yamaha would have to be removed from its storage and placed on the ground, then the 30 amp shore cord has to be plugged in, and the gas tank refilled. You would need to have it locked to something secure to prevent theft. The 3000 watts does seem like barely enough, so it would be running at close to full throttle most of the time.

I think there are some smaller Onan generators that cost less. I remember a 3600 watt.
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Old 08-17-2014, 12:26 PM   #9
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Here is a Onan 3600 propane model and a 3200 diesel model. The dealer probably specified the 5500 as it's the only one that says it will run 2 air conditioners with power to spare. If you only want to run one, then these less expensive generators would be a option.

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Old 08-17-2014, 01:03 PM   #10
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$6500 is the normal price for factory install--if a dealer is going to install everything (including a sealed compartment) it is a good price. As mentioned above, Onan is basically the only choice in a built-in. I can tell you they are quite hard on propane supply--my factory install can use a 40lb/10gal tank in 10 hours of continuous use for the ACs.
2--2000 Hondas give you a more economical fuel use, but hassle to start and have paralleled + possibility of loss to theft. A 3000 will run 1 AC but little else and is about 160lbs.
Really don't know which would be best since it wasn't done in the original purchase.
Have a friend that is going to put the 2 Hondas in a metal box on the fiver hitch and 'theft-proof' them best he can--
Joe
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Old 08-17-2014, 02:02 PM   #11
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Which mounting method do you want to go with ?

In the grooming business, we swap onboard gensets for hitch mounted genies during times of maintenance on the onans or as an overall replacement strategy
One brand is stowaway 2. This hitch mount holds about 200lb on a swing out bracket and is an easy way to mount a large inverter type generator. If you have a hitch on et 5th wheel that would work fine.

The best fixed gasoline genset out there is the water cooled honda EV40 and 6010. Pinellas fully rebuilds and offers these with a nice warranty.

The dual genset solution is both a pain, and creates twice the maintenance.

The air cooled genies overheat in high temps on full load and the water cooled (tiny) honda works beautifully.

It fits in about the same space as an onan micro quiet 4000 which WILL run an AC and microwave and lights etc. but suffers noise vibration and an harshness as well as is comparatively thirsty.

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Old 08-17-2014, 07:57 PM   #12
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doesn't sound like there's a easy solution, like it was discussed earlier the propane generator will be the logical solution but draws on you're propane tanks and is costly, we live in the Northwest and 90% of our camping is done between Yellowstone and the Pacific so AC is not something we use a lot, basically what we need power for is maybe the bedroom AC unit in extreme situations recharging the batteries and watching TV and microwave from time to time. I have read good reviews about the Yamaha 3000 and being more quiet then the Honda's.
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Old 08-20-2014, 07:52 PM   #13
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Paul: Everyone acts like money grows on trees.

Onans are great, but setting the trailer up to handle one would be expensive and a big hassle.

Honda and Yamaha's 3000 watt inverter generators are really good--with the Yamaha's $2200 model having a boost feature for A/C startups.

But the best bang for the buck is the Champion 3100 watt inverter generator available online for about $950. Last month, Overstock.com had them for about $850, but they were giving an additional 10% discount to new subscribers. While the Champions are Chinese made, the company and the products get high reviews for customer satisfaction and service. And it can be equipped with a remote starter, too. And te electricity is very "clean", which is important for electronics.

FYI: One single A/C unit on Grand Design can be run by 2000 watts. To run the microwave, you'd want to cut off the A/C momentarily.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:40 PM   #14
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All good info, but don't forget to set the Champion gen next to a Honda/Yamaha and run them for comparison. Then decide how much you want to pay for quiet.
Joe
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