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Old 06-23-2022, 08:19 PM   #1
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inverter generator overkill?

Little did I know 2 years ago when I purchased a TT that a 30 amp service is limited to the number of equipped devices that can be used simultaneously. Hot water heater, AC and converter with fridge are over 30 amps and Hughes Performer disconnects. All 15 and 20 amp breakers total 95 amps with a 30 main, not exactly like home service where total of breakers doesn't exceed main. With my new found understanding of TT limits I don't see the need for an inverter generator larger than 4000 watt since max wattage through a 30amp breaker is 3600 at 120 volts. My thought is it's a waste of money to buy bigger since goal is just some AC and converter on the occasional boondock trip?
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Old 06-23-2022, 09:23 PM   #2
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Now your thinking and may want to get 2 smaller dual fuel generators that are stackable that use less fuel to run and are generally quieter when running. A 2200watt generator maybe all you need. And if you need more buy a 2nd and stack them for 4400watts.
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Old 06-23-2022, 09:59 PM   #3
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That's a very good idea, AC alone is roughly 17amps which would be 2040 watts, propane and batteries could handle rest. Understand high demand raises fuel consumption and decibel level but guessing generator probably wouldn't be heard over AC with windows closed? Popular opinion is a larger inverter generator is quieter because it's not running at higher speed but it would be interesting to compare fuel usage of a smaller motor running faster versus a larger motor running slower, energy output being equal.
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Old 06-23-2022, 11:25 PM   #4
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not exactly like home service where total of breakers doesn't exceed main.
Not to nit pick but my main panel with a 200A feed has at least 400A of breaks (20 breakers per leg, 20+ amps each). Thats not counting the 3 sub panels (attic, barn, and basement).

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Old 06-23-2022, 11:54 PM   #5
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External Noise

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Originally Posted by bubbalowe View Post
That's a very good idea, AC alone is roughly 17amps which would be 2040 watts, propane and batteries could handle rest. Understand high demand raises fuel consumption and decibel level but guessing generator probably wouldn't be heard over AC with windows closed? Popular opinion is a larger inverter generator is quieter because it's not running at higher speed but it would be interesting to compare fuel usage of a smaller motor running faster versus a larger motor running slower, energy output being equal.

I know you referenced boondocking, so if you're far away from others, it may not be an issue, but the noise outside could be a big issue for others, even if you can't hear it inside.
I've refrained from running my 2 2,000 watt generators several times, when I would like to have A/C, but didn't want to disturb the peace.
I use 2 Predator 2000 generators, which are pretty loud. But I've observed that the Predator 3500 watts are very quiet.
I am also aware that there are other 2000, 2200 watt generators that are quieter than mine.
But just because you can't hear it inside, with A/C going and windows closed, doesn't mean it isn't blasting outside.
Just something to consider.
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Old 06-24-2022, 01:56 AM   #6
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I use 2 Predator 2000 generators, which are pretty loud. But I've observed that the Predator 3500 watts are very quiet.
That's why I've been warning everyone here, not to buy the HF Predator 2000w inverter generators. Get the 3500w version.
The 2000w one is louder as my Champion 3500w open-frame contractor-style generator.
Not sure whose writing HF's descriptions but there no one proof-reading them. The initial paragraph says it's quieter than a conversation(58db).
But in the Overview section, it says 66db and in the Specifications, it also says 66db.
From what reviews and videos I've seen, 66db is probably correct.
My $300 Champion 3500w open-frame contractor-style generator is rated at 65db.
HF should be ashamed of calling the 2000w Predator, a quiet inverter generator, when it's louder than open-frame contractor-style non-inverter generators.
https://www.harborfreight.com/2000-w...hoCT0cQAvD_BwE
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Old 06-24-2022, 01:56 PM   #7
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I've refrained from running my 2 2,000 watt generators several times, when I would like to have A/C, but didn't want to disturb the peace.
I use 2 Predator 2000 generators, which are pretty loud. But I've observed that the Predator 3500 watts are very quiet.
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That's why I've been warning everyone here, not to buy the HF Predator 2000w inverter generators. Get the 3500w version.
Truth be told, my 2 Honda 2000 watt generators were loud as all hell when running full bore to support a 15k BTU air conditioner. I was wholly unprepared for how loud they were based on how everyone claims they're "whisper quiet". They might be whisper quiet UNTIL you start running them at capacity, then they're loud an obnoxious.
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Old 06-24-2022, 03:02 PM   #8
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Truth be told, my 2 Honda 2000 watt generators were loud as all hell when running full bore to support a 15k BTU air conditioner. I was wholly unprepared for how loud they were based on how everyone claims they're "whisper quiet". They might be whisper quiet UNTIL you start running them at capacity, then they're loud an obnoxious.

You’re going to be kicked out of the Honda club with talk like that
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Old 06-24-2022, 05:44 PM   #9
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Not to nit pick but my main panel with a 200A feed has at least 400A of breaks (20 breakers per leg, 20+ amps each). Thats not counting the 3 sub panels (attic, barn, and basement).

Jim M.
You're correct, individual breakers only protect wires and I was wrong thinking they were for a total load potential. The 30A trailer service only protects supply wire from wall plug to distribution box? Why don't manufacturers provide 50/30 service to give campers the option if they find matching shore power?
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Old 06-24-2022, 06:58 PM   #10
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Electric Service

"Not to nit pick but my main panel with a 200A feed has at least 400A of breaks (20 breakers per leg, 20+ amps each). Thats not counting the 3 sub panels (attic, barn, and basement)."

In the above case, one has 200 amp capacity on L1 and 200 amp capacity on L2. Thus 400 amps of breakers, 200 total amps on one side and 200 total amps on the other side is 400 amps.

In RV service a 120V 30A service is the breaker limit at the power post and the main breaker in the power distribution panel. I suppose most realize that one can't run "everything" at the same time from a 30 amp service. The limit is 3600 watts.

In going to larger RV, because they have much more equipment, they typically have 50 A service. That provides 120 Volt at 50 amps on L1 and 120 volts at 50 amps on L2. The limit is 12,000 watts.

I'd say the reason most don't have 30/50A service is one centered around the cost to do so. A length of #6ga x 4 for a 50A service is quite pricey. Not to mention the added cost of associated hardware and connectors.
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Old 06-24-2022, 07:46 PM   #11
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In the above case, one has 200 amp capacity on L1 and 200 amp capacity on L2. Thus 400 amps of breakers, 200 total amps on one side and 200 total amps on the other side is 400 amps.
.
Not really relevant to the OP's discussion but no, thats 400A of breakers per leg. Or put another way, my panel has 40 breakers in it, all of them are at least 20A.

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Old 06-24-2022, 08:31 PM   #12
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As you narrow down your options, keep in mind that the EU2200i Honda is actually only capable of 1800W continuous output. The 2200 Watts is good for a few seconds to help start motors and such.

Also, the Honda EU3000ui noise specs are almost identical to the new 2200i. It is actually quieter than the earlier EU2000.
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Old 06-24-2022, 09:00 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by bubbalowe View Post
I don't see the need for an inverter generator larger than 4000 watt since max wattage through a 30amp breaker is 3600 at 120 volts. My thought is it's a waste of money to buy bigger since goal is just some AC and converter on the occasional boondock trip?
I think you are correct. You could start with a smaller generator and soft start on you ac and see if it will work.
Personally, I like the Champion dual fuel which has a 53db sound level and because it's an inverter generator, the sound is ultra quiet until you put a load on it. They are very light and you can tie two of them together with their adapter kit. They aren't cheap though.
https://www.amazon.com/Champion-Powe...b3de13370&th=1
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Old 06-25-2022, 07:37 AM   #14
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Honda don't even make 2000 generators anymore. they are now 2200 surge, 1800 continuous. But I agree about the noise. on my truck camper I could run the little polar cub 9.5K btu off the Honda 2000 but during startup the voltage drop would cause the satellite system to reboot, and once the AC was running the little Honda would be running at a higher RPM which made it sound louder.
I bought a HF 3500 and it did the job better, plus it was much quieter under load (plus it has electric start). That 3500 even ran my 15K on my MBS camper
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Old 06-28-2022, 06:58 AM   #15
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That's why I've been warning everyone here, not to buy the HF Predator 2000w inverter generators. Get the 3500w version.
The 2000w one is louder as my Champion 3500w open-frame contractor-style generator.
Not sure whose writing HF's descriptions but there no one proof-reading them. The initial paragraph says it's quieter than a conversation(58db).
But in the Overview section, it says 66db and in the Specifications, it also says 66db.
From what reviews and videos I've seen, 66db is probably correct.
My $300 Champion 3500w open-frame contractor-style generator is rated at 65db.
HF should be ashamed of calling the 2000w Predator, a quiet inverter generator, when it's louder than open-frame contractor-style non-inverter generators.
https://www.harborfreight.com/2000-w...hoCT0cQAvD_BwE
I have a Predator 4000 that was purchased during a power outage several years ago and was selling to sell to offset cost of the little generator. When I started yesterday to test was surprised how quiet it actually ran, next step connect to trailer and run AC, may have my solution already.
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Old 06-28-2022, 12:02 PM   #16
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I have a Predator 4000 that was purchased during a power outage several years ago and was selling to sell to offset cost of the little generator. When I started yesterday to test was surprised how quiet it actually ran, next step connect to trailer and run AC, may have my solution already.
I had to install a soft start on my AC with an igen 4200. Without it, the cycling surge was ridiculous.
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Old 06-30-2022, 07:44 AM   #17
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How hard was installation?
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Old 06-30-2022, 08:00 AM   #18
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DB ratings are with no load in ECO mode.

Ramp up ANY inverter generator under load and your going to hear a HUGE difference in noise.

Larger generators that can provide the necessary wattage without having to raise the RPMs are going to be quieter no doubt, even though they are... larger. You'll likely see an improvement in fuel consumption too because the generator isn't screaming.

If noise is not a concern, any generator(s) that will produce the necessary 3600w for a 30a shore service will suffice.
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Old 06-30-2022, 09:29 AM   #19
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How hard was installation?
Much easier than I thought it was going to be. Customer support was really good. The guy actually called me back on a Saturday afternoon to answer one of my questions. Just a few wire nuts and connections.
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Old 06-30-2022, 11:56 AM   #20
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DB ratings are with no load in ECO mode.

Ramp up ANY inverter generator under load and your going to hear a HUGE difference in noise.

Larger generators that can provide the necessary wattage without having to raise the RPMs are going to be quieter no doubt, even though they are... larger. You'll likely see an improvement in fuel consumption too because the generator isn't screaming.

If noise is not a concern, any generator(s) that will produce the necessary 3600w for a 30a shore service will suffice.
Couldn't agree more and I own proof of this.

A 3500w champion inverter generator along with a 2500w champion inverter generator.

I usually pack the 3500w inverter on warm weather trips when A/C use is likely. Runs A/C on eco mode low speed once A/C has started up.

Last week I decided to try out the 2500w, which I usually only take on cold weather trips for battery charging when skies are overcast and solar can't keep up.

Temps hit mid 90's as expected and while the 2500w did fine starting and running the A/C it only did so at much higher speed and much louder. Not enough to exceed noise limits but definitely noticable.

Running load of 1.25kw (measured) is 74% of running watts (1850w) with the 2500w generator. With my 3500w generator it's only using <40% of the running wattage (3200w) and MUCH quieter.

Fuel consumption is about the same for each but the small generators also come with small fuel tanks. Barely over 1 gallon on my 2500w unit and 1.6 gallons on the 3500w unit. Barely 4 hours of powering A/C with 2500w and just over 8 hours with 3500w unit.

Close to same amount of fuel but doesn't need to be filled as often.
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