Generator talks

Nabsim

Forum Member
I don’t want a discussion on how bad generators are I just want to pick the brains of anyone with recent experience.
I have been running my Hyundai HY1000i for almost two years without any problems except having to replace the pull cord but that’s normal wear and tear and probably my starting technique. Before I bought my 2x30amp Victron chargers I asked Victron if my generator was capable of powering them, in spite of them saying yes it will only run one.
I want to run both so the generator doesn’t have to run as long/battery’s charge quicker so I have started looking for a suitable replacement that produces 2Kw. I am well aware that Honda are the best but they are well out of my pension range so wondering if others have reliable and relatively quiet generator recommendations. I have been looking at one that retails at £399 and have been close to clicking the buy button but this week someone has been parked near me with a new Clarke 2500 genny, I think they refer to it as the little atom or mighty atom, anyway they have had constant trouble and I ended up lending them mine as they had no heat or light. The Clarke was (I thought) a step up from what I was looking at as it retails around £560.
I am now thinking my best bet may be bite the bullet and go for the 2-2.2Kw Hyundai but I didn’t want to spend that much.
The one I was thinking about was the AG-Bohmer which sounds German but is Chinese as most are. I don’t want two stroke. Any recommendation for me to check out?
 

wildebus

Forum Member
I don’t want a discussion on how bad generators are I just want to pick the brains of anyone with recent experience.
I have been running my Hyundai HY1000i for almost two years without any problems except having to replace the pull cord but that’s normal wear and tear and probably my starting technique. Before I bought my 2x30amp Victron chargers I asked Victron if my generator was capable of powering them, in spite of them saying yes it will only run one.
I want to run both so the generator doesn’t have to run as long/battery’s charge quicker so I have started looking for a suitable replacement that produces 2Kw. I am well aware that Honda are the best but they are well out of my pension range so wondering if others have reliable and relatively quiet generator recommendations. I have been looking at one that retails at £399 and have been close to clicking the buy button but this week someone has been parked near me with a new Clarke 2500 genny, I think they refer to it as the little atom or mighty atom, anyway they have had constant trouble and I ended up lending them mine as they had no heat or light. The Clarke was (I thought) a step up from what I was looking at as it retails around £560.
I am now thinking my best bet may be bite the bullet and go for the 2-2.2Kw Hyundai but I didn’t want to spend that much.
The one I was thinking about was the AG-Bohmer which sounds German but is Chinese as most are. I don’t want two stroke. Any recommendation for me to check out?
I would have thought they could do both as well :(

not a suggestion for a generator, but a suggestion of what you could try with your current setup.... If you put one of the 30A chargers into "Night Mode", it would cut the maximum current to 15A. Maybe running at 45A (30A for one, 15A for other) might be within the capability of the HY1000i and give you an adequate result?
 

Bouydog

Forum Member
Good to hear your good experience with Hyundai , I to am in the generator search minefield and have almost decided on the Hyundai P2500i as a winter backup. They run a constant 2000 watts £460ish from Hyundai uk with two year warranty. I had a Honda many years ago and while it was good I find it hard to warrant the price for just in case.
 

Nabsim

Forum Member
I would have thought they could do both as well :(

not a suggestion for a generator, but a suggestion of what you could try with your current setup.... If you put one of the 30A chargers into "Night Mode", it would cut the maximum current to 15A. Maybe running at 45A (30A for one, 15A for other) might be within the capability of the HY1000i and give you an adequate result?
I tried that Dave, if you go into advanced settings (I think it was) you can drop even lower to 7.5 amps but it wouldn’t run with that either unfortunately. I can run with both at 15a but that’s no advantage on running one at 30a

Edit: strangely yesterday about a minute after starting up my genny knocked off on overload and I thought maybe I had left the second charger on as well. I hadn’t and when I restarted it was running flat out. The app was showing the charger running at 30a but the battery monitor was showing otherwise. At maximum there could have maybe been 2a coming in from solar when I took this screenshot.
 

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Nabsim

Forum Member
Good to hear your good experience with Hyundai , I to am in the generator search minefield and have almost decided on the Hyundai P2500i as a winter backup. They run a constant 2000 watts £460ish from Hyundai uk with two year warranty. I had a Honda many years ago and while it was good I find it hard to warrant the price for just in case.
My smaller one has been spot on, no experience of the bigger ones so far but would presume they should be the same. Looking online tonight my model is going for just over £400 so that one has gone up a bit. I do notice the bigger ones don’t have the lcd display that my model does. Don’t suppose it makes any difference in use but mine shows running hours
 

Squiffy

Forum Member
I've been running a Honda 10i for 17 years
Changed the oil once in those years and not touched it other than put petrol in, its economic, virtually silent compared to any other generator I've come across on the many sites I've been on. OK it doesn't run my microwave, but it runs everything else and recharges my battery whilst I watch the TV and runs all my lights, I'd suggest that the 20i Honda would be more than capable for the most discerning requirements, but of course you have to pay for quiet power so as not to upset others whether on camp site or wild camping. Phil
 

Nabsim

Forum Member
I've been running a Honda 10i for 17 years
Changed the oil once in those years and not touched it other than put petrol in, its economic, virtually silent compared to any other generator I've come across on the many sites I've been on. OK it doesn't run my microwave, but it runs everything else and recharges my battery whilst I watch the TV and runs all my lights, I'd suggest that the 20i Honda would be more than capable for the most discerning requirements, but of course you have to pay for quiet power so as not to upset others whether on camp site or wild camping. Phil
I agree about the Hondas but unfortunately they are out of my price range
 

SquirrellCook

Forum Member
You have one generator your happy with. The bigger one is heavier. Why not get another small one? Seems a cheaper option. And you don’t have to run both. If one dies you still have one.
 

wildebus

Forum Member
You have one generator your happy with. The bigger one is heavier. Why not get another small one? Seems a cheaper option. And you don’t have to run both. If one dies you still have one.
Could also have dual EHU input? so if need be run them both, with one 30A charger on each.
 

Nabsim

Forum Member
I could do that but overall would be more weight and a lot more storage space. Not going to rush anything, I know I can manage as I am just not taking advantage of the extra charge potential
 

st3v3

Forum Member
I do wonder if there is something wrong with your current generator because everything adds up to it should be able to supply both.
 

wildebus

Forum Member
I do wonder if there is something wrong with your current generator because everything adds up to it should be able to supply both.
That is true. 1000W generator is good for 4A AC, which equates to 80A DC (12V), so even allowing for losses, should be able to drive a pair of 30A chargers and certainly a total of 45A of chargers. It sounds like it maxs out at just over 30A, which is more like a 500W generator.
Not stuck in the ECO mode possibly?
 

SquirrellCook

Forum Member
I can’t remember the numbers now, but when we were looking at running off grid the losses in a generator are horrible. Working in calories only about 10% resulted in electricity. The generator was better at making heat rather than electricity. My 1kva generator is rated at 900watts. Using two victron battery chargers. One 24 volt 12 amp and a 12 volt 15 amp makes the poor generator rev its nuts off. I don’t think they are as good as they are supposed to be.
 

wildebus

Forum Member
I can’t remember the numbers now, but when we were looking at running off grid the losses in a generator are horrible. Working in calories only about 10% resulted in electricity. The generator was better at making heat rather than electricity. My 1kva generator is rated at 900watts. Using two victron battery chargers. One 24 volt 12 amp and a 12 volt 15 amp makes the poor generator rev its nuts off. I don’t think they are as good as they are supposed to be.
The generator or the chargers? or both!
I know the naming on generators can be deceptive if you take them at face value. I have a B&S one which is called something like a "P2200" but is a 1600W unit (they do tell you that, so not deceiving as long as you read the specs and not go by the name)
 

SquirrellCook

Forum Member
This was to generate mains electricity via some kind pre electronic alternator. Switched mode chargers like the victron ones are impressively efficient. I guess the only way to tell if a generator is up to spec. Is to put a resistive load on it. Then increase the load until it complains.
 

Nabsim

Forum Member
My 1Kw genny is rated at 900W continuous in the specs. It isn’t stuck in eco as you hear it ramping up the revs. One thing though, will the Victron chargers always draw the same current or do they peak on first start?
 

wildebus

Forum Member
My 1Kw genny is rated at 900W continuous in the specs. It isn’t stuck in eco as you hear it ramping up the revs. One thing though, will the Victron chargers always draw the same current or do they peak on first start?
with your lithium batteries, I would think they are always running at full current. no startup surge. The output is based on 30A at 14.7V probably so at the voltage they will be at your batteries, they will be running at over 30A and as the voltage rises, the current will fall, but the power draw will stay stay the same.
what about any other AC loads when you plug the generator into the EHU plug? have you still got the built in charger switched on?
 

Nabsim

Forum Member
No I disconnected the Schaudt charging and removed the additional Schaudt charger. I don’t usually tend to use the genny until I have dropped below 40% SoC so it will be running flat out although not quite flat out for the genny. I always switch it to eco mode and if I flick the switch back to full power you hear it ramp up slightly but not much. If I think on I will plug it in tomorrow and check what revs it is running at both in eco and flat out. There is nothing else drawing power on 240 that I am aware of but I do have one of those tent type EHU cable with breaker and plug socket on one end so I can bypass the vans 240 completely and try the chargers direct from the genny, that may be worth doing if just to eliminate everything else and see what happens.
I can’t access the history of the charger until they are on 240V but from memory I don’t think it contains the same level of information that the mppt charger does. It was showing output at 14. Something (probably 14.5v and current of 30a but I suspect that isn’t so much what the charger is doing as what it is set at.
 

wildebus

Forum Member
No I disconnected the Schaudt charging and removed the additional Schaudt charger. I don’t usually tend to use the genny until I have dropped below 40% SoC so it will be running flat out although not quite flat out for the genny. I always switch it to eco mode and if I flick the switch back to full power you hear it ramp up slightly but not much. If I think on I will plug it in tomorrow and check what revs it is running at both in eco and flat out. There is nothing else drawing power on 240 that I am aware of but I do have one of those tent type EHU cable with breaker and plug socket on one end so I can bypass the vans 240 completely and try the chargers direct from the genny, that may be worth doing if just to eliminate everything else and see what happens.
I can’t access the history of the charger until they are on 240V but from memory I don’t think it contains the same level of information that the mppt charger does. It was showing output at 14. Something (probably 14.5v and current of 30a but I suspect that isn’t so much what the charger is doing as what it is set at.
it usually is not a optional thing, but just in case, update the firmware on the chargers to the latest version. there were some useful control options added. maybe something will be of use for setting or monitoring?
 

Nabsim

Forum Member
I have the latest updates as of two days ago and just checking it is showing latest version when I click to update manually, good thought though :)

So this morning I got out the 240 EHU lead I used to use in my trailer tent to bypass the vans 240v completely, started up and connected one charger and genny is in eco but around 1500 rpm under full load. Connect second charger set to 7.5a and it ramps up a bit but still not full load.

That is a little better as going through the van 240 the genny goes to overload after about a minute. The overload is when it tries to full more current than it can supply. Turned the second charger to 15a output and it went to overload almost straight away.

I can’t quantify the difference going through the vans 240 or bypassing it but it does look like I can run another 7.5a although I didn’t leave it long so not sure if it would overload after time. It’s is easier to use the built in 240v system and for the difference I will continue that way unless the extra bit is critical.

I have gone through the Hyundai manual again this morning and it definitely states 0.9Kw continuous and 1.0Kw peak output and it is 230v @3.9amp.

While checking specs I noted that the Hyundai 2Kw model is 1600W continuous with 2000peak so I would probably need the next one again (2.2Kw) to be safe. Doesn’t make sense to me if the current genny is supposed to produce 80amp at 12 volts or there abouts.

Pics of this morning: The first is the tent EHU cable I used first, second shows output of the connected charger as I was typing this, third shows some charger history, fourth is my BMV front page, fifth is BMV history and sixth is my mppt showing there is virtually nothing from solar. My Votronic (no pic) is currently showing 4W. The Victron is a 150W panel on the roof and a 100W folding panel which is why that shows more.
 

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