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Old 07-30-2012, 06:21 PM
mking7 mking7 is offline
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Default Generator/Electrical Question

Just got a travel trailer....a 'new to me' special. I'd never had one before. So I went to a bbq cook off and set up camp. Had to power off of a generator (Northern Tool's NorthStar brand, 5500watt surge, 4500watt continuous)....Couldn't run the AC when it was really hot outside. At night it did fine.

The gen has 2x120v 20amp and 1x120/240 20amp outlet.

The trailer is set up for 30amp service. Any way to get 30amp 120v out of the gen set I have or do I need to start thinking about a different generator....or maybe stop camping when it's 106 outside.
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Old 07-30-2012, 06:27 PM
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milomilo milomilo is offline
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In theory it should put out 40 amps at max load.
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Old 07-30-2012, 06:44 PM
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I have one like that. Doing similar. I pulled the plate off where the plugs and breakers are and found many loose connections. Tightened up and it has been happy when I use it.

Scott
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Old 07-31-2012, 07:47 AM
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My trailer will run the AC off a 15 amp service, just dont use anything else when its running! (like the microwave)
Your generator likely has fast blow circuit breakers instead of ones like in your house, so as soon as it sniffs close to 20 amps, they pop. Like Scotts suggested, tighten all the connections up and try it. You could also talk to an electrical contractor and see if they can "load test" your breakers for you. They may be tripping under a lighter load. If they are, replace them and you should be good to go, as long as your fridge and AC unit dont happen to start at the exact same time!
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Old 07-31-2012, 08:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scotts View Post
I have one like that. Doing similar. I pulled the plate off where the plugs and breakers are and found many loose connections. Tightened up and it has been happy when I use it.

Scott
Scotts right, also breakers, as they age(multiple trips) are designed to trip early rather than allow more than rated current through.
Sometimes replacement of the breaker is the cure or shading it from sun. The are temperature activated, and I have seen this in action when using a welder at a farm. Hang cardboard over the pole breaker, and it won't pop.
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Old 07-31-2012, 08:30 AM
monte55 monte55 is offline
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Check the condenser coils and make sure they are clean on the ac. If starting is the problem you can add, if it doesn't have it already have it, a booster unit that consists of a start cap and relay. Easy hook up. Just 2 wires. They connect to the oil run capacitor. Herm and com terminals.
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Old 08-05-2012, 10:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rustythe4x4 View Post
My trailer will run the AC off a 15 amp service, just dont use anything else when its running! (like the microwave)
Your generator likely has fast blow circuit breakers instead of ones like in your house, so as soon as it sniffs close to 20 amps, they pop. Like Scotts suggested, tighten all the connections up and try it. You could also talk to an electrical contractor and see if they can "load test" your breakers for you. They may be tripping under a lighter load. If they are, replace them and you should be good to go, as long as your fridge and AC unit dont happen to start at the exact same time!
I agree with what rusty is saying here.
When I first got my generator, the air conditioner wouldn't start on gen power, until I realized that the water heater was set to run off AC, and did start once I switched the heater to propane.
When I am camping, and using my generator (Honda eu3000is inverter), the fridge and water heater are both on propane, so there is a minimum of unnecessary load on the generator. Basically, there is just the converter, and what little power the board on the fridge or water heater needs to light the burners, plus lights and T.V. as required. If SWMBO wants to use the microwave, the air is shut off.
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Old 08-07-2012, 10:15 AM
mking7 mking7 is offline
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Well....I took the front panel off the generator and all the connections were good and tight. But the loose connection comments made me look at other points in the circuit...The adapter (30amp rv to 15amp) had some loose connections in it. So for grins I ordered a new one for $5 on Amazon. So far, that appears to have been the culprit. I ran all day on an outlet from my shop one day and the next day I fired up the generator and ran it all day on that. Thanks for your input guys.
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