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Open Roads Forum  >  Tech Issues

 > honda 2000i reverse polarity

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Travelinjack

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Posted: 08/16/12 05:07pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Been reading this forum for a while and there are some pretty smart people here. I recently hooked up my twin honda's to my 5th wheel for the first time and the pi 50 amp protector read 126 volts and 60 hertz but would not let power in. showed reverse polarity. puzzled I got out my three light outlet checker, went to the honda's and it showed the same, reverse polarity at the generator outlet.

Have any of you ever checked your honda's for polarity and if so how did you correct?

thanks for any help. travelinjack

Wayne Dohnal

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Posted: 08/16/12 05:31pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Something is not right. The tester should show "open ground" with a Honda inverter generator. If it shows reverse polarity with nothing but the tester plugged in, there's either something wrong with the generator or something wrong with the tester. If it shows open ground with nothing plugged in, then reverse polarity with something plugged in, there's something wrong with what you plugged in.


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2oldman

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Posted: 08/16/12 05:35pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

No, never had this problem.

Not sure what a 'pi 50a protector' is.

Travelinjack

Oregon

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Posted: 08/16/12 05:57pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Wayne,
thanks for the reply, I have had the generators for some time and they have always performed perfectly. Did not know I had a problem until hooking up to the 5th wheel. I will try some other combination maybe using a grounding plug on the generators.

2oldman

Its the Progressive Industries hard wired surge protector and I know it saved me at least once when in an Iowa thunder and lightning storm when it detected a surge and shut off all power for a little bit. everything came thru unharmed! This is definitely a worth while investment.

Travelinjack

2oldman

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Posted: 08/16/12 06:54pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Travelinjack wrote:

Did not know I had a problem until hooking up to the 5th wheel.
The problem lies in your protector. I have a similar problem with my Prosine inverter if I try to hook it up to an MSW source, like a crappy generator. It won't pass power.

What does the term '50 amp' mean as far as your protector?

wa8yxm

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Posted: 08/16/12 07:07pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

First: What is "reverse Polarity"? I mean it is an AC Circuit to polarity kind of makes no sense.. or does it.

In house wiring reverse polarity means the black and white wires are swapped. Normally the white is the "Neutral" and is bonded to the ground at the main service enterance (The panel right after the meter).

Normally the BLACK wires are hot. NOT bonded to ground)

However the reason for the safety ground is.. Too complex for me to type today.

If you are using a portable generator, Such as the honda EU-2000i's the safety ground is NOT NEEDED and is thus normally left not-connected or if it is connected it is just to the frame of the generator, There is no neutral/ground bonding.

This can cause a difference in potential (It is called a floating ground by the way) of as much as sixty volts between the white wire and the ground. This is not dangerous however because it is not voltage that kills, it is current.

And though there is a lot of voltage there,, Put a load on it and it goes POOF right fast. (in short it won't pass current) I can also explain where the voltage comes from (This is what I studied in college) but again no desire on this post.

The Progressive Industries device is detecting this voltage and saying "OH, black and white must have been swapped"

It should be saying "OPEN GROUND" by the way.

In either case tell it "OK Ignore that" and let the power pass (Hit the bypass button)


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smkettner

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Posted: 08/16/12 07:13pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

First check voltage to ground while running. I believe it should measure ~60vac.
Then check continuity to ground with generator off. I believe it should be zero.

Then make a bonding plug with a replacement plug from the hardware store or from your junk box. Attach a 100k ohm (100,000) 1/2 watt resistor between the neutral and ground. No cord. Plug it into one of the open generator outlets. PI will then allow power.

Or just use the PI bypass.


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Golden_HVAC

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Posted: 08/16/12 07:36pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I was under the impression that generators are not grounding either of the wires inside them.

Fred.

ktmrfs

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Posted: 08/16/12 09:23pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Wayne Dohnal wrote:

Something is not right. The tester should show "open ground" with a Honda inverter generator. If it shows reverse polarity with nothing but the tester plugged in, there's either something wrong with the generator or something wrong with the tester. If it shows open ground with nothing plugged in, then reverse polarity with something plugged in, there's something wrong with what you plugged in.


x2. once you get the polarity problem fixed, you'll either need to bypass the EMS or make some kind of grounding plug to tie the ground and neutral together on the honda.

EVERY honda I've ever seen is wired with the standard hot and neutral configuration on the duplex plugs. You can check the honda with a standard outlet checker, and it should show open ground, not reversed polarity.


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Wayne Dohnal

Bend, OR.

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Posted: 08/16/12 09:33pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Travlinjack, here's what I suggest you should do: (1) Double check you're interpreting the tester lights correctly, specifically that you're not mixing up open ground and reverse polarity. (2) Try the tester on each generator individually (i.e. no parallel cables), with nothing else plugged in. It should read open ground on each of them. If it reads reverse polarity, I'd place my bets on the tester being bad as opposed to both Hondas having the same defect.

At this point, the individual generators should be reading open ground.

(3) Hook up the parallel cables and run the generators in parallel with nothing but the tester plugged in. It should still read open ground. If not, something is wrong with the parallel cables. (4) Connect the power protector and RV, with the tester plugged into one of the generators. The tester should still read open ground. If the indication is different here, try connecting the power protector but not the RV and see if the indication is different.

As stated above, once you get to this point, you'll probably need to make a bonding plug for the generators, but that's the next step after fixing the reverse polarity issue.

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