Posted By RichC on August 25, 2016
After we “cooked” our generator (my fault for not telling Brenda to prop open the enclosure door), I’ve been tinkering to get parts in order to fix it as mentioned before … but my best attempt as scrounging parts has failed. I could only come up with a possible match for the windings and the price was that of a new generator!
So … when I spotted a small “quieter” Predator inverter-style compact generator on sale at a third of the price of the superb Honda EU2000i that we use on the boat … yet can produce a few more watts (2200 watts plus surge of 2500 watts), I bought it. I’m reworking my entire back-up power plan and have decided to tie in a couple of solar panels, deep cycle batteries and an inverter along with this generator when I build out my grill/greenhouse/rain porch idea (including a photo of the rain flashing above as a concept of bending stainless steel to prevent water from getting behind the stone veneer just as we did for our chimney repair last year).
After removing the old generator and plastic storage box that stood on the sidewalk pad, this new smaller generator should greatly improve the space I have to work with, particularly if I include it inside the greenhouse space. I experimented by wiring a special 20 amp to 30 amp pigtail to test the current 6 circuits use with the old 5000 watt Generac and was shocked at how well this new Predator did in my 3 hour break-in test (burned less than 1/2 gallon of fuel). All six circuit remained powered including kitchen lights and our new refrigerator, furnace fan (no AC obviously), the master bedroom, high draw Plasma TV and my entire home office setup. The biggest drain was when the sump pump kicked in which could be a problem IF other big draw items are on. Realistically though, 95% of the time I can monitor what we use.
As a side note, the above 4 prong 30 amp receptacle is expensive! I shopped it as best I could and still ended up spending $20 plus 2 new 20 amp 110 volt plugs only to realized that one of the cans of spares my dad had collected (and that I brought home from Sidney) was full of plugs that I could have used (no 4 prong 30 amp though!). I realized that I have too much unorganized junk.
Now all I need to do is negotiate with Brenda (previously mentioned kitchen project) in order to fund my grill/greenhouse/generator outside space!