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Old 09-10-2013, 12:20 AM   #1
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Newbie question: is a 1000w generator enough??

So I am going through the process of buying bphin's 1991 Ford SMB. Inspection done and it got a good report. So I am planning on items that I will need for future camping trips with the family. I can get a good deal on a Honda 1000 watt generator / inverter. But I have no idea if its enough to charge a starting battery if its dead. Can any of you lend me your experience and thoughts? It searching the forum it seems the general consensus is to get a 2000 watt unit but wanted to get your thoughts before I walked away from the 1000w unit.

Many thanks.

Ron
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Old 09-10-2013, 12:44 AM   #2
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Re: Newbie question: is a 1000w generator enough??

Ron, A 1000W will do the job fine but if you want to run large stuff as well, a 2000w give you the chance to run things like hair dryers, microwaves, and heaters which generally would push the limits of Honda 1000. You can always bank two 1000's if necessary but a 2000 is much smaller than 2-1000's.

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Old 09-10-2013, 09:02 AM   #3
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Re: Newbie question: is a 1000w generator enough??

Dave - thanks for the reply. So the 1000 will do the job of recharging the battery enough to start the can but won't be enough to run the fridge, microwave and other conveniences in the van. I assume it won't be enough to recharge the house power in a decent amount of time either. More of an emergency back up?

Thx
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Old 09-10-2013, 11:19 AM   #4
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Re: Newbie question: is a 1000w generator enough??

1000W is enough to run most everything, 12V fridge, lights, radio, computer, etc. But maybe not a microwave, hair dryer, toaster, electric heater or other high power appliances.

I have a 1000W Honda generator and rarely use it. All the little power consumers are handled by the house batteries. And, as long as you drive every other day or so you should be fine with that. As an alternative, you can install a solar panel to keep the house battery charged when not driving.

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Old 09-10-2013, 11:26 AM   #5
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Re: Newbie question: is a 1000w generator enough??

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ford_6L_E350
1000W is enough to run most everything, 12V fridge, lights, radio, computer, etc. But maybe not a microwave, hair dryer, toaster, electric heater or other high power appliances.

I have a 1000W Honda generator and rarely use it. All the little power consumers are handled by the house batteries. And, as long as you drive every other day or so you should be fine with that. As an alternative, you can install a solar panel to keep the house battery charged when not driving.

Mike
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Old 09-10-2013, 12:13 PM   #6
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Re: Newbie question: is a 1000w generator enough??

Although the Honda has a 12v outlet it would be a poor battery charger. You would be better off plugging 12v battery charger into the Honda's 120 volt outlet and charge your batteries with that. Much faster.

And of course the "1000w" Honda is really 900w continues and the 1000 refers to a peak load.

I have 2000w Honda and am considering going to a 1000w model. Smaller, easier to carry and store. Would be noisier though since it would be running closer to full throttle where the 2000w Honda would be loafing along.
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Old 09-12-2013, 03:13 PM   #7
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Re: Newbie question: is a 1000w generator enough??

I had to upgrade my 1000i to a 2000i. My 2000Watt inverters battery charger required 1000 watts. So the 1000i Honda generator would not charge my house batteries. I would have avoided the problem if I had read the inverter paper work first.

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Old 09-12-2013, 05:48 PM   #8
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Re: Newbie question: is a 1000w generator enough??

Quote:
Originally Posted by Angel
I had to upgrade my 1000i to a 2000i. My 2000Watt inverters battery charger required 1000 watts. So the 1000i Honda generator would not charge my house batteries. I would have avoided the problem if I had read the inverter paper work first.

Angel
That's a very good point. If you have a good multi stage inverter/charger you should use it over a standard car charger. But you can also purchase a good marine type smart charger that can be sized to the Honda 1000. You'll have to read the specs on the inverter as to what it draws while in the charge mode (provided you have one).
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Old 09-13-2013, 01:29 AM   #9
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Re: Newbie question: is a 1000w generator enough??

I also have a smart charger which worked with the 1000i for charging the starter battery. But, trying to get to and charge two house batteries under the van was not something that would be easy, nor something I wanted to try to do.

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Old 09-13-2013, 08:56 AM   #10
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Re: Newbie question: is a 1000w generator enough??

Napkin math:

We have two 115 a-h house batteries. 50% discharge means I need to supply 100+ a-h to the batteries to get them back to about 100 charge level.

A 40 amp smart charger would require me to run the generator about 2.5 hrs to recharge my house batteries. If I had a 20 amp smart charger that would take 5 hours of generator run time.

Sad to say my house batteries are only wired to a 10 amp 2 stage charger. Fine when at home. I have a mechanical timer in the circuit and just crank it over to 24 hours and let the charger do its thing for 24 hours and the house batteries are charged.

As we do more and more dry camping w/o running the van for 4+ days at a time I am starting to think about and look for a 40 amp smart charger that would fit in the same space as my 10 amp one.
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