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Old 06-21-2016, 02:07 AM   #1
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Can Air Conditioner Cause Generator Circuit Breaker To Pop?

Title line says it in a nutshell. Can the air conditioner compressor pop the AC breaker? We were working on the interior of our 2006 SunSeeker today. As the temperature climbed, we started the generator and turned on the air conditioner. After an hour of operation, co-owner decided to turn the thermostat to "colder." Compressor had just finished its cycle and the prescribed five minutes of "idle" time had not yet elapsed. A moment later the 110 volt power cut out. The generator ran well, but it acted like there was no load. We checked the breakers in the power converter, and found that none had tripped. We figured we'd check the shore-power plug. After going back to the house and loading our portable generator in the back of the van, we went to our dealer to pick up a part (for another project) that had arrived. Offhand, we asked the service guy if the generator had a master breaker on it. He said, "Yes it does," then he showed us its location. After resetting the generator's breaker everything was back to being okay. Should we worry? K-R.
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Old 06-21-2016, 02:58 AM   #2
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Can Air Conditioner Cause Generator Circuit Breaker To Pop?

Yes they can and they do. I don't know the size of your AC or your generator but typical you need at a minimum 3000kw for a 13.5 AC unit. I have a 2700 kW and have added a hard start capacitor to my 13.5 AC. Sometimes it works sometimes it pops the breaker in the gen.


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Old 06-21-2016, 03:38 AM   #3
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Generator and Air Conditioner are original to the 2006 SunSeeker 3100. Power converter is Progressive Dynamics replacement for the WFCO 8955. Surge Guard remote display shows Air Conditioner drawing 13 amps in normal operation. K-R.
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Old 06-22-2016, 07:14 AM   #4
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The LRA (Locked Rotor Amps) can go much higher for enough seconds to trip breakers higher than 30 under the wrong conditions.

My Coleman Mach III (15K) air conditioner can reach 58 amps momentarily and even with my Hard Start Capacitor and Fan Motor Delay Relay can trip the breaker on my 3500 Watt Yamaha 3000 SiB.

Here is a video of amp draw with just the converter on during air conditioner start up during optimum conditions.

Mine spikes well over the 25 amps (3,000 Watts) "indicated" (the meter "samples" the current every 500ms or so) so there is not a continuous readout) even with just the compressor starting.

So yes, this is normal.
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Old 06-22-2016, 07:19 PM   #5
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Time is the Key

One item of note is that the "prescribed five minutes of idle time had not elapsed". Idle time is needed to allow the pressure on the discharge (condenser) side of the compressor to bleed off through the expansion valve, equalizing suction (evaporator) pressure with condenser pressure. This prevents starting the compressor against a high discharge pressure, which requires more effort (higher amps) and possible motor and compressor damage.

Cheers,
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Old 06-22-2016, 07:33 PM   #6
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ANY Freon compressor whether in a whole house unit, a window unit, a camper, a fridge, whatever, should be allowed to "rest" a few minutes before restarting.

We shut off our house a/c when a thunderstorm comes through for this reason; a brief power outage could be bad for the units.

Most home fridge's are smart enough to keep trying to restart, without damaging anything, until they succeed. Most a/c's are not. At least in my experience.
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Old 06-22-2016, 07:45 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by olemax View Post
One item of note is that the "prescribed five minutes of idle time had not elapsed". Idle time is needed to allow the pressure on the discharge (condenser) side of the compressor to bleed off through the expansion valve, equalizing suction (evaporator) pressure with condenser pressure. This prevents starting the compressor against a high discharge pressure, which requires more effort (higher amps) and possible motor and compressor damage.

Cheers,
What he said ...
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Old 06-23-2016, 08:30 AM   #8
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Interesting timing

Last week while coming back from yellowstone, in 105 deg temp., I was running on board 5500 watt gen and both ACs. Breakers popped after an about 40 minutes
I was thinking of replacing original breakers with a better brand.
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Old 06-23-2016, 12:20 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scubanut View Post
Yes they can and they do. I don't know the size of your AC or your generator but typical you need at a minimum 3000kw for a 13.5 AC unit. I have a 2700 kW and have added a hard start capacitor to my 13.5 AC. Sometimes it works sometimes it pops the breaker in the gen.


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I know Honda recommends a 3000watt generator for a 13500 ac unit but Yamaha mkes a 2400watt generator they claim will run a 13500 ac unit. HHavenet trid it just know what I hav read.






http://www.dhy.com/new_vehicle_detai...r=2&DispType=0


read down about 10 lines.

Jim
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Old 06-23-2016, 12:55 PM   #10
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This quick mod will save you a lot of grief when it comes to taking the starting load off your generator. Especially if you are a little on the shy side for starting/ running watts.

https://youtu.be/NVkCjPh7Nd8
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