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Old 02-23-2015, 08:16 PM   #1
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AC won't run on generator?

Searching but not finding the answer so I thought I would post it for the really smart people on this site.

My AC works fine on shore power and my camper is only a year old. I installed an Onan 4000 generator. It seems to work fine. I also have a progressive industries surge suppressor. When the generator is running the PI remote display has good readings. The fridge, microwave, etc. all work. But not the AC. When I turn that on with only generator power, the camper's display flashes really fast. it looks like an E and the number 13.

Any hints on what could be wrong or what to look for would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 02-23-2015, 08:21 PM   #2
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Probably have two many items running. Try it with Ac only. What size Ac do you have? Sounds like to much running for the genny to handle
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Old 02-23-2015, 09:02 PM   #3
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Try running frig , water heater on gas. When you want to use microwave tune off AC when your finished with microwave turn AC back on. Most people don't think about the water heater using lots of amps. Hope this helps. Wish it was warm enough here in Ohio to use AC.
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Old 02-23-2015, 09:08 PM   #4
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No code 13

Error Code Chart

E-0 Normal Condition

E-1 Reverse Polarity Condition (hot and neutral wires reversed)

E-2 Open Ground

E-3 Line 1 Voltage High (Line voltage above 132)

E-4 Line 1 Voltage Low (Line voltage below 104 volts)

E-5 Line 2 Voltage High (Line voltage above 132)

E-6 Line 2 Voltage Low (Line voltage below 104 volts)

E-7 Line Frequency High (Line frequency above 69 cycles

per second)

E-8 Line Frequency Low (Line frequency below 51 cycles

per second)

E-9 Data Link Down

E-10 Replace Surge Protector Module
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Old 02-23-2015, 09:16 PM   #5
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Tossing a few brain cells out. I can't see why the 4k gen wouldn't pump out enough. The only thing I can think of is maybe a ground difference. Maybe a chassis wire run to the chassis of the gen?
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Old 02-23-2015, 09:24 PM   #6
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TURBS good stuff you posted. Could you pull out your appliance amp chart please...
Now that I think about it Lowbubba had a problem with his surge protector when on generator. He called them for support. Told him to check a few things then had to send his back for repair. Not saying op has a bad one just adding something else to check
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Old 02-23-2015, 09:26 PM   #7
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Wattage % Volts = Amps
Amps X Volts = Wattage

One other thing to keep in mind is many RV appliances require more amps to start the appliance than they do to run the appliance. A roof air conditioner can draw 16 amps to start, but may only use 13 amps once it is running.

120 Volt AC Amp Ratings
Appliance or Electronic Equipment Estimated Amps
Air Conditioner (X number of A/C) 12-16 Amps
Blender 5-6 Amps
Coffee Maker 5-8 Amps
Compact Disc Player 1 Amp
Computer (Laptop) 2-3 Amps
Converter 1-8 Amps
Crock Pot 1-2 Amps
Curling Iron <1 Amp
Drill 2-6 Amps
Electric Blanket 0.5-1.5 Amps
Electric Fan 1 Amp
Electric Water Heater 9-13 Amps
Electric Skillet 6-12 Amps
Hair Dryer 5-12 Amps
Iron 5-10 Amps
Light (60 watt % 120V) <1 Amp
Microwave 8-13 Amps
Microwave (Convection Oven) 13 Amps
Refrigerator in AC mode 5-8 Amps
Space Heater 8-13 Amps
Television 1.5-4 Amps
Toaster 7-10 Amps
Vacuum (handheld) 2-6 Amps
VCR 1-2 Amps
Washer/Dryer 14-16Amps

12 Volt DC Amp Ratings
Appliance or Accessory Estimated Amps
Aisle Light 1 Amp
CO Detector 1 Amp
Fluorescent Light 1-2 Amps
Furnace 10-12 Amps
LP Gas Leak Detector 0.5 Amp
Overhead lights (Per Bulb) 1 Amp
Porch Light 1 Amp
Power Roof Vent 1.5 Amps
Radio/Stereo 4 Amps
Range Hood (Fan & Light) 2-3 Amps
Refrigerator (LP Gas Mode) 1.5- 2 Amps
Security System 1 Amp
Television (12 volt) 4-5 Amps
TV Antenna Booster <1 Amp
TV Antenna Booster 12 Volt outlet Up to 8 Amps
Variable Speed Ceiling / Vent Fan 4 Amps
VCR Recorder / Player 2 Amps
Water Pump 4 Amp
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Old 02-23-2015, 09:31 PM   #8
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Dang that was fast. hope your staying warm. Dave961 is this a new problem or the first time for using the generator.
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Old 02-23-2015, 09:32 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DougP47 View Post
Dang that was fast. hope your staying warm. Dave961 is this a new problem or the first time for using the generator.
No problem !


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Old 02-24-2015, 07:51 AM   #10
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Try this, turn everything off, bypass the surge suppressor, light the a/c and see what happens. That will get you closer to the components and their operational limits, when in concert with each other. Just sayin'
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Old 02-24-2015, 09:38 AM   #11
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The issue is likely the starting amps required for the compressor. You need to add a hard start kit which is a capacitor to provide that extra jolt of amperage to spin up the compressor. My well is on a 50amp circuit but still utilizes two large capacitors at startup. The major RV A/C makers sell the hard start kit to add on. Here is a link discussing the process with pictures.

Installing Hard Start Capacitor into my RV Air Conditioner
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Old 02-24-2015, 09:41 AM   #12
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You could also do the a/c fan delay mod.
This mod let's your a/c compressor start and get running before it turns the a/c fan on.
Substantially lower start up amp draw.


https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sour...IMUI8AfGxNSBvA
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:12 AM   #13
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Here's what I think is happening by your description: when the AC starts, the in rush current drops voltage below 104 volts and your EMS-HW30C low voltage protection activates and opens the circuit thus resetting timer on surge protector. You can by-pass your protector on the remote and try if your generator will start your AC.


EMS-HW30C :

Surge Protector with Voltage Protection
and Remote Display
Hardwired for 30amp RV's

High/Low Voltage Protection:
Whenever AC power falls below 104 volts, or rises above 132 volts, the EMS automatically shuts down power to the RV. The EMS will monitor the power and once the AC power rises above 104 volts, or below the 132 volt level, the time delay indicator flashes for the preset time and then automatically restores power to the RV.
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Old 02-24-2015, 01:14 PM   #14
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Great suggestions. The PI surge suppressor reads 125 when on generator, so I am getting juice. I will look at the reading when starting AC to see if it drops too low. Then I will try bypassing it to take that out of the equation, and post another reply.


Info I omitted before; I've run the genie for a total of 10 hours without any issues, but this is the first time trying the AC on generator. Also, the (13.5) AC was the only thing I was trying to run at the time, and the 4000 should be able to run everything I have easily.


I was guessing on the error code. BTW: the error code is on the camper's AC/Heat/Fan control screen, not the PI screen. The tiny screen is flickering very fast when this issue is occurring. If it was a wiring issue, wouldn't I have issues running anything requiring the generator? Also, if the generator was not wired correctly the PI unit paperwork said it would not let any juice through.
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Old 02-24-2015, 01:28 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TURBS View Post
Wattage % Volts = Amps
Amps X Volts = Wattage

One other thing to keep in mind is many RV appliances require more amps to start the appliance than they do to run the appliance. A roof air conditioner can draw 16 amps to start, but may only use 13 amps once it is running.

120 Volt AC Amp Ratings
Appliance or Electronic Equipment Estimated Amps
Air Conditioner (X number of A/C) 12-16 Amps
Blender 5-6 Amps
Coffee Maker 5-8 Amps
Compact Disc Player 1 Amp
Computer (Laptop) 2-3 Amps
Converter 1-8 Amps
Crock Pot 1-2 Amps
Curling Iron <1 Amp
Drill 2-6 Amps
Electric Blanket 0.5-1.5 Amps
Electric Fan 1 Amp
Electric Water Heater 9-13 Amps
Electric Skillet 6-12 Amps
Hair Dryer 5-12 Amps
Iron 5-10 Amps
Light (60 watt % 120V) <1 Amp
Microwave 8-13 Amps
Microwave (Convection Oven) 13 Amps
Refrigerator in AC mode 5-8 Amps
Space Heater 8-13 Amps
Television 1.5-4 Amps
Toaster 7-10 Amps
Vacuum (handheld) 2-6 Amps
VCR 1-2 Amps
Washer/Dryer 14-16Amps

12 Volt DC Amp Ratings
Appliance or Accessory Estimated Amps
Aisle Light 1 Amp
CO Detector 1 Amp
Fluorescent Light 1-2 Amps
Furnace 10-12 Amps
LP Gas Leak Detector 0.5 Amp
Overhead lights (Per Bulb) 1 Amp
Porch Light 1 Amp
Power Roof Vent 1.5 Amps
Radio/Stereo 4 Amps
Range Hood (Fan & Light) 2-3 Amps
Refrigerator (LP Gas Mode) 1.5- 2 Amps
Security System 1 Amp
Television (12 volt) 4-5 Amps
TV Antenna Booster <1 Amp
TV Antenna Booster 12 Volt outlet Up to 8 Amps
Variable Speed Ceiling / Vent Fan 4 Amps
VCR Recorder / Player 2 Amps
Water Pump 4 Amp
I think my coffee makers pulls 13-14amps. Anything else on the circuit will pop the breaker. Maybe the years (6) on the coffee maker is telling me something? Anyway thanks for the information!!!
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Old 02-24-2015, 01:43 PM   #16
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I was borderline running AC with Yamaha 2500w gen. Installed hard start capacitor and off it went.
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Old 02-24-2015, 01:46 PM   #17
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A surge suppressor does several things including protecting from under voltage. When you start the AC with other things drawing current, the voltage drops. The generator senses that and changes speed to compensate, however being mechanical ( can not instantaneously change speed) , the delay to get back up to proper voltage is greater than the the response time of the surge suppressor and it throws an error. This will only get worse with normal use of the AC in hot weather since the pressure ( head) in the AC will be higher after the initial start. You will have to manage loads to make a 4K generator work. It is not hard to do, but you will need to manage it.
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Old 02-24-2015, 02:01 PM   #18
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No error code 13 on thermostat either.


Error Code:

E1 Loss of communication between the

CCC 2 thermostat and all system power

module boards. System will shut down.

E1 Loss of communication between the

CCC 2 thermostat and an individual sys-

tem power module board. The LED will

display error code E1 and the zone num-

ber that lost communication. Any addi-

tional zones that lose communication will

blink in addition to the current zone.

E2 Open circuit or out-of-range Indoor Tem-

perature sensor. All heat, cool, and de-

humidify operation will be locked out.

Manual fan operation can continue.

E3 Shorted Indoor Temperature Sensor. All

heat, cool, and dehumidify operation will

be locked out. Manual fan operation can

continue.

E4 Open circuit or out of range Outdoor

Temperature Sensor (Select Models).

Heat pump and dehumidification opera-

tion will be locked out. Air conditioner,

furnace, heat strip and fan operation can

continue to operate.

E5 Open circuit or out of range Freeze Sen-

sor (Select Models). Air conditioner and

dehumidification operation will be locked

out. Heat pump, furnace, heat strip and

fan operation can continue to operate but

displays the last temperature set-point.

E6 Open circuit Humidity Sensor (Select

Models). Air conditioner and dehumidifi-

cation operation will be locked out. Heat

pump, furnace heat strip and fan can

continue to operate.

E7 Loss of 120 VAC power to all power mod-

ule boards on the system. The system

will shut down.

E8 Invalid zone configuration. The heat

pump and heat strip DIP switches are

both set to the ON position in one zone.

Heat pump, heat strip, air conditioner,

and dehumidify operation will be locked

out in the affected zone.

E9 Invalid zone configuration. The dehumid-

ifier DIP switch and either the heat pump

or heat strip DIP switches are set to the

ON position in one zone.
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Old 02-24-2015, 02:06 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by palmetto rogue View Post
I was borderline running AC with Yamaha 2500w gen. Installed hard start capacitor and off it went.
X2 also one the generator, does it have a 30 amp or a 20 amp receptacle that your main power is plugged into?
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Old 02-24-2015, 02:55 PM   #20
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I have the same geni in my rv. check on the geni you have two fuse levers one is for ac and one is for all other items. You have to take off the front cover to see them. most likely the one for the a/c is thrown try resetting both fuse's and check back.
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