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Old 09-08-2014, 12:20 AM   #1
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microwave issue

This one has me stumped.
we had the RV away for the weekend and ran it on a genni NOT a camp ground hook up.
when i tried to use the microwave, everything appeard to be working but after 10 mins the food was still cold.
I tried it again when i got home and plugged the RV into the house and the darn thing works.

The genni is a 3K watts running power. 3500 on start up and i was plugged into the 30 AMP receptacle..
at the house the RV is just plugged into a normal 110 outlet.
Is this normal? Is is just that the Genni is not powerfull enough?

Thanks
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Old 09-08-2014, 12:42 AM   #2
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This may help.

Microwave: works in the house but not on the generator - SmokStak

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Old 09-08-2014, 12:48 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by russ View Post
This one has me stumped.
we had the RV away for the weekend and ran it on a genni NOT a camp ground hook up.
when i tried to use the microwave, everything appeard to be working but after 10 mins the food was still cold.
I tried it again when i got home and plugged the RV into the house and the darn thing works.

The genni is a 3K watts running power. 3500 on start up and i was plugged into the 30 AMP receptacle..
at the house the RV is just plugged into a normal 110 outlet.
Is this normal? Is is just that the Genni is not powerfull enough?

Thanks
I'll be interested to follow this thread. The last time we ran our generator (with it's own 30 Amp RV outlet) was here at home during a power outage. While we never had a problem before, this time my surge protector acted crazy. First it said I had no ground. (I did, and I double checked with an ohmmeter). Then, after a while, it said "polarity reversed." Next time I fired up the generator, everything was ok. The point I'm making is:
Generator-supplied power seems to confuse some circuits. Perhaps your microwave thought it was in a reverse-polarity situation, and would not activate the high-voltage microwave tube. I don't know. Since your whole trailer, with microwave, works fine on an extension cord plugged into a normal 20 amp outlet, it seems like your circuits and microwave are fine.
How about others? Any known issues when running on a generator?
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Old 09-08-2014, 01:09 AM   #4
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Not all generators can run electronics. You need a Generator that gives you clean power just like when your plugged in at home, they usually say inverter generator or the model number has an "i" in it.

There are many modern electrical/electronic devices that will not work on a regular generator.
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Old 09-08-2014, 01:30 AM   #5
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i thought there is an inverter in the power circuit of the RV.
after following the link i understand the problem a lot better.
Guess i have just been lucky before as the old microwave ran fine on the Genni.

Thanks for all the fast repies.
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Old 09-08-2014, 05:49 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by hddecker View Post
Not all generators can run electronics. You need a Generator that gives you clean power just like when your plugged in at home, they usually say inverter generator or the model number has an "i" in it.

There are many modern electrical/electronic devices that will not work on a regular generator.
As we suspected. Our $400, 3500 Watt conventional generators won't always pass the muster. We need $1,000 inverters! Sheesh! As long as it runs the AC, I'm fine. As far as sensor lights, maybe I'll quit asking the question that I don't want to hear the answer!
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Old 09-08-2014, 06:32 PM   #7
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Here is the one I have & it works great & is quite. Good price & free shipping.
Champion Power Equipment 75531i Portable 3100 Watt Inverter Generator at ATG Stores
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Old 09-08-2014, 06:36 PM   #8
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Here is the one I have & it works great & is quite. Good price & free shipping.
Champion Power Equipment 75531i Portable 3100 Watt Inverter Generator at ATG Stores
That's the type of generator you need for the modern electronics.
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Old 09-08-2014, 11:11 PM   #9
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This is a little confusing to me, an inverter generator.

Does not an inverter use DC voltage to create AC voltage? With that being said, does not the generator, in of itself, create 60 cycle 110 volt AC that should be suitable for electronic equipment found in an RV? If this is the case what is the need to invert DC voltage?

If the generator ouputs 12 volt DC then nothing more should be needed, DC voltage is direct, no sine wave to consider.
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Old 09-09-2014, 08:47 AM   #10
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Sundance, I just did a little homework to verify what I thought to be true. The old-fashioned generators that you and I are familiar with do indeed produce 120VAC, but the AC is a function of the windings, and the speed of the engine. As engine speed in any gasoline engine will vary, especially under load, the output frequency will also. That's the rub. The output varies, not only in frequency, but also voltage, depending on loads, and engine conditions.
The new-fangled inverters take this further. They also produce an AC output, which is rectified into DC. Doing so takes out the effect of speed variation. Then, the DC is inverted into nice, pretty sine-wave AC, solely through electronics. Since the DC filtered out fluctuations, the AC output is now more pure. Also, with electronic feedback, the gasoline motor can run at lower speeds, hence more quietly, when the demand is low. Load now is a function of DC amperage going into the inverter. This technology does come at a price. The Champion model mentioned earlier is indeed a nice one. My old-timer is a Champion, a little larger in size, and I selected it because it runs on propane. Now I see select-a-fuel models that burn either propane or gasoline. I suspect I have not bought my last generator!
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Old 09-09-2014, 01:06 PM   #11
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An old 3600 rpm generator would still work these days if the electronics weren't so sensitive. In my solar house I could run the A/C and all the house stuff off the old Honda motorhome backup generator. That same stuff would also run off the 2400 watt converter I had to power the house.

The only thing that wasn't happy with my choice of type of electricity was the microwave. Not the LED TV, not the audio components, not the satellite internet system, nope, just the microwave.

I didn't use the micro that much anyway, bought it on sale on a fluke.

800 clams for a generator is a decent price but a microwave doesn't justify the expense to me.

Give this a think,, we need an inverter generator to make DC voltage to be converted to clean AC so we can plug in our AC wall adapters to this clean power to power our DC stuff.
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Old 09-09-2014, 06:26 PM   #12
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To add what Marty said, which btw was well put, inverter generators take the risk factor out of the equation when using modern electronics. Many non-inverter generators will run an LCD TV, your fridge or a computer but as the power is not 'clean' or consistent it will work fine until it does not. Then your electronics will fry. Not worth the risk IMO.
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Old 09-09-2014, 07:52 PM   #13
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To add what Marty said, which btw was well put, inverter generators take the risk factor out of the equation when using modern electronics. Many non-inverter generators will run an LCD TV, your fridge or a computer but as the power is not 'clean' or consistent it will work fine until it does not. Then your electronics will fry. Not worth the risk IMO.
That's why I went with the inverter 10 years ago. I saw what stuff looked like that didn't care for the output of a regular generator.

Lots of stuff looks like it's happy, but it will only tell you when it dies. Hey, maybe I could fry my Mac so I can buy a new one. What my wife doesn't know, can't hurt me.
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Old 09-10-2014, 12:44 AM   #14
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Here is the one I have & it works great & is quite. Good price & free shipping.
Champion Power Equipment 75531i Portable 3100 Watt Inverter Generator at ATG Stores
As a retired Lowes employee, I can tell you this: ATG is a subsidiary of Lowes. You can place an order to them through their Special Order or Pro Service desk. If you get a discount or a period of interest free financing on your Lowes card, you will get it on this special-order purchase. Delivery is normally straight to your home, but can be marked for store pick up if preferred. If you are military, you will get your military discount on an ATG purchase. Believe me, I know, this is how I got mine!
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