Trying to decide if a generator is worthwhile or not. There have been times when the power goes out at my house. I have an 800 watt inverter and my camper battery, and I've used them for short term things like lamps. I have fish and they won't do without power to keep the heaters and filters running.
Some friends of mine and I were camping this weekend, and as luck would have it, the transformer powering a number of sites burned out Saturday night and left a good number of folks without power, including my friends. Somehow I lucked out and was on another transformer even though I was across the street from my friends. Some folks next to my friends had the luck of bringing along a Honda 3000 generator, so they ran their A/C and even a projector to watch movies that night.
My friend was seriously thinking about running out and buying a generator, while the power was out, so I told him what I knew and how the garden variety generators at places like the hardware store were cheap but very noisy, and why the expensive ones like the Honda inverter generators are well liked. Seems the park management pulled some strings and the electric guys replaced the transformer with a temporary fix that night, but it still got me scratching my head if it's worthwhile to invest in one myself.
I like the Honda eu2000 generators, and the Kipor ones seem like a next best thing. I'm just trying to decide if it's worth having one. I'm a ham radio operator and they are very popular around field day too. I'm just trying to decide if the expense, the space it would take in my garage, and having to keep a supply of gas handy without having it go stale are worth it. Trouble is, it might get used once a year. On the other hand, I'm guessing it would be very easy to sell a gently used, well-maintained Honda 2000 and still get a good price if I find out it's hardly ever used.
Sounds like you're not quiiiiiite ready for a generator yet. Those fish tanks are a bear. And if you really want to have a headache, switch over from the tropicals to salts. God help ya if an anenome craps out on ya. Today, I have a generator and no fish tank to light up the family room. Don't need it very often, but when I do, it lights up everything in the house, lights, a/c, microwave... all at once. LOL.
i wouldn't bother buying one unless you dry camp or boondock or plan to.
if you always camp with hookups, buying one isn't worth it unless you have the extra money.
in Calif., we almost always dry camp so a generator is very useful for us and we love our Honda 2000. got it off of Craig's, for $700 and only 25 hours on it.
and if we ever upgrade to a bigger RV, we'll get another to parallel.
Dan- Firefighter, Shawn- Musician/Entrepreneur, Zoe- Faithful Golden Retriever, 2007 Chevrolet Avalanche LS, 2007 Rockwood Roo 23SS w/Equalizer and Prodigy, and 5 Mtn. bikes and 2 Road bikes
there are some chinese generators out there super cheap and just about as dependable as name brands. Upside? very low price about the same as one repair bill on a name brand. Downside? Don't quite have the service end of things covered so these may be more of a disposable item. However it may be perfect for your intended use. I recommend using StaBil for the downtimes. Must have item.
Having that Honda while camping lends to your mobility - immensely!!! Honda & Yamaha are the very best on the market - not cheap, but you get what you pay for. I have a friend who went the Generac Inverter Route......about 6 weeks outside the warranty it took a major downer - it was going to be cheaper to replace than have it worked on and the down time. Safe travels.
Don't get a cheapie generator. I've seen some based on Yamaha's ET800 design which is a design from the 1970s before electronic equipment became commonplace, and it will eat chargers and computers for lunch.
If I were buying a generator that would power a chunk of my house, as well as be usable for trips, I'd get one of the 6000-6500 watt inverters from Honda or Yamaha. The Yamaha 6300iSDE can do both 120 and 240 volts. It is notoriously heavy (200 pounds dry, but realistically, 275 once gassed up), so use a ramp or crane to get it in a truck.
For a RV, it might be overkill, but on the other hand, it will make your power limit your 30A connection and not your generator. To boot, with the smart throttle, it will use a lot less gas if running at 1/4 to 1/2 load.
Of course, you can get a smaller model (or two 2000 watts paired up), but if one is looking to run a major chunk of the house, it can't hurt to get a larger generator.
Of course, the larger generators most likely will have remote starts, which make life easy for powering stuff on while boondocking and not having to go outside.
It's only worth it if you think it's going to be worth it...
I have a Honda 3000i gen and we've had it for about 6 years now. We got it when we thought we'd try to get out into more remote areas to go camping in.. Well, we still have that thought in mind, but have not done it very much...
Our other reasoning for getting the Honda was for use at home too. We've had the power go out several times. First time, no gen at all.. First thought was "wouldn't it be nice if we had a gen?"
After we got the Honda, the power went out again.. Now I had the gen, but had to run extension cords all over the place.. What a hassle. Next thought was "I should wire this into the panel"..
Got a gen switch wired in my home panel. Selected the 6 circuits that I felt would work the best for me.
Didn't have another power outage for over 3 years! Well, it finally happened earlier this year...
Boy, was it nice to wheel out the ol' Honda. Plug in the single cable to the gen switch, fire up the gen, switch over the circuits and power to the main circuits in the house!
It ran for 36 hours and I only shut it down once to refuel. It took a total of 5 gallons for the entire 36 hour run! Not bad when you consider it was running 2 fridges, fish tank, TV/Cable/Surround sound, various lights, microwave at times and an electric heater at times..
All good reasons for me..
I have taken my gen with me, even to full hookup sites, on the off chance the power would go out.. But, I've not done that for awhile..
I know when/if it happens while camping, I'm going to kick myself for not bringing it!!
Good luck with the decision!
*Anything I post is for entertainment purposes only and what usually works for me.. Your Mileage May Vary..