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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  Modifications and Accessories

 > Generator use during travel

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Lwiddis

Lone Pine, CA

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Posted: 11/15/20 07:55am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

“Does anybody have any experience doing this?”

No and your electric heaters in the RV living area won’t warm your tanks much if any.


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TomG2

Central Illinois

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Posted: 11/15/20 08:19am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Class A and Class C motorhomes travel thousands of miles every year with generators running. I have run mine in the bed of my pickup while driving with the travel trailer plugged in for air conditioning. I don't do it all time, just wanted to make sure that it would work.

Thermoguy

Graham, WA

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Posted: 11/15/20 09:46am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Why do you need to have power when moving? Trying to keep the pipes from freezing? Wouldn't it be smarter to run empty and drain your low point drains before driving in such low temps. Maybe add antifreeze to areas where you might not be able to get all the water out? I assume this is the only reason you want to have power. Just winterize or do as much as you can. I think if you filled your fresh water, assuming you need water, a full tank wouldn't freeze even with 8 hours of driving. When you get where your going, plug in or run the gen.

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 11/15/20 09:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

dodge guy wrote:

As long as you have a battery charge line running from the truck to he camper via the 7-way plug then the battery will stay charged. Run the furnace and tune on the heated tanks if you have them.


Not a chance.
True statement if you had a dedicated charging line but the little 10ga 12V wire in the 7 pin doesn’t do much.


"Yes Sir, Oct 10 1888, Those poor school children froze to death in their tracks. They did not even find them until Spring. Especially hard hit were the ones who had to trek uphill to school both ways, with no shoes." -Bert A.

time2roll

Southern California

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Posted: 11/15/20 10:50am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

theoldwizard1 wrote:

dodge guy wrote:

As long as you have a battery charge line running from the truck to he camper via the 7-way plug then the battery will stay charged. Run the furnace and tune on the heated tanks if you have them.
I would add a DC-DC battery charger in the trailer.
I agree if camping off-grid.
I believe the OP is jumping pedestal to pedestal and even if the battery is bit low on arrival it will charge soon enough.

I would sooner carry an extra cylinder of propane.


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lane hog

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Posted: 11/15/20 11:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The furnace should do.

Another option would be to run the generator from the bed of the truck, and snake an extension cord into the coach for a space heater or even to the back of the coach to the shore power.

Haven't done it yet, but I will be running some 10/3 (orange) Romex with the appropriate twist lock connector from the tongue to the rear of my coach so that I can run the generator on overnight stops. It's $50 in wire plus the connector.

* This post was edited 11/15/20 11:57am by lane hog *



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canoe on top

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Posted: 11/15/20 12:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

An electric heater won't heat the enclosed space under the trailer where the tanks are. I've towed in winter and just keep the furnace turned on. Don't forget to turn on the water heater. It is exposed to the outside and can freeze. Shore power is a great convenience in winter. If you boondock, you will need a lot of battery capacity and will have to run the generator a lot during the day.

Huntindog

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Posted: 11/15/20 03:00pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lots of opinions here.

But I have actually done this.
Here are some facts.

My first TT a 75 Prowler. I welded an extension onto rear frame rails. It was beefy. It had to be, as the small quiet inverter generators did not exist then.
I wanted a quiet generator. The Honda ES3300 was my pick.... It was HEAVY at over 400#!!!
I semi permanently mounted it on the rear rack I had fabricated along with a cover to protect it from weather. It had electric start, so I rigged up a switch to be able to start it from inside the TT.

It worked great under tow, and camped. No issues at all...

Well there was one big one. The weight I probably added 600#s to the rear. So I had to be sure to load the front heavy.

With todays small Hondas, it would work even better.

As an aside, I have also ran the furnace while under tow. No issues there either.

Note: This was before the internet was invented, so information and misinformation (opinion) was not so easy to spread.



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campigloo

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Posted: 11/15/20 03:11pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have an Outback like yours. I put solar on it and occasionally needed to run the gen while on the road on a cloudy/rainy day. I cut the ends off of a typical 30a extension cord and connected in line with the shore power and through the underbelly to the front of the trailer and long enough to reach the bed of the truck with lots of slack. I slipped the tonneau cover slightly rearward and put wedges under the lid to create a draft of cool clean air. I use rubber bungees to stabilize the gen.
I’ve run it for several thousand miles like this from Alaska to Florida and points around and it works great. No carb or oil or overheating problems.

Fstmvrerik

Salina, Ks.

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Posted: 11/15/20 06:22pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I did a road test this morning, the heater did not skip a beat (I was amazed). I was still worried about the underbelly tanks and knife blades on the waste, so I put a diverter on the front bedroom floor vent so I can run heat directly into the belly next to water and bathroom waste storage.

Now I just wish I could replace my 30lb tanks with 2 100lb tanks I have in my garage, not going to start that project since I am really happy with my hitch adjustment and the added weight directly on the tongue.

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