Jump to content
Rvnotyet

Generator or not?

Recommended Posts

I've been looking for a Toyota Sunrader, and notice almost none of them have generators.  Is one very important?  How much should I allow for the cost of one in an RV I'm looking at?  Is it easier to buy one and add it to an RV, or is a portable one a better idea?  Any recommendations on a good portable?  I just want to be able to run the AC or the microwave(for popcorn, of course).  Sorry for all the questions, thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Depends on your needs.  We carry a Honda 2200i and rarely use it.  If doing dispersed for more than one night, we run it at night for our CPAPs (2).  On the one occasion we were dispersed and better half wanted ac, it dropped the temp from outside 85 to inside 70 but took 3 hours to get there.  I do like my kureg and will fire it up in the morning to operate it for a couple cups.  We don't use the micro much, when we do we are on shore power.  Our camper is 30 amp.  I would not try to run more than a couple items with this small generator but for our needs, it works great.  AC, micro at same time, some lights, tv, get 2 of these or a bigger gen set.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It also depends on where you will store it. Does a Sunrader usually have generator prep? Which basically means they kept a space under the rig clear for a future generator. If not, where would you put either a built in or a portable rig? The pictures I saw of Sunraders don't look like they have much storage space.

Linda

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

only upon rare demand do you need a generator.  If you are Dispersed-boondocking-dry camping the majority of the time then yes you need a small to medium size generator.   Else why have one and store it with you?  You can buy one at COSTCO or Lowes or Home Depot immediately that day and use it.  You also need a tank to get gasoline, and supplies to keep the generator cleaned and running.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, Rvnotyet said:

almost none of them have generators.  Is one very important?  How much should I allow for the cost of one in an RV I'm looking at?  Is it easier to buy one and add it to an RV, or is a portable one a better idea?  Any recommendations on a good portable? 

The importance depends on your style of camping since you shouldn't need one if you usually stay in places with shore power available. In my years of RVing we have been without one more of the time than we had one and for us, it was a convenience but not critical. The built-in type are generally better if you will use it a great deal to operate things like the air conditioner and microwave but a small portable will do fine for small loads and battery charging. They built in generators are usually much larger capacity than portables but those can now be used in pairs if you want to operate everything. Unless you expect to spend a lot of time where there are no electric connections, I would probably not buy one built in.

For portables, you want to be sure that you get one of the inverter models as the cheaper construction type units and most popular would be Honda & Yamaha, then probably Bolly and a long list of others. Prices range very widely as well. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you are going full time and plan on using some dry camping spots now and then (Walmart, Casinos, Cabela's, Bass Pro, etc.) then having a generator may be worth it.  Also, during our total time full timing, which is just now adding up to 3 years, we have been in a CG where power has went off a few times.  It is pretty nice when this happens to just flip on the gen set and go about your business.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks everyone for the great information.  I'll look first for the RV which does what I want, and if it doesn't have a generator already I may (and may not) get one, either way I'll know what I'm getting into.  This is a really helpful site-

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a Class C with a generator and I use it occasionally. It comes in real handy if you have pets and want to do some shopping or eat out. I'll park in the back of the lot and fire up the generator so the dog and cat have A/C. 

I've also used it when at a laundromat, so I could sit in the rig and watch TV and nuke a cup of coffee rather than sit there and watch the machines spin...

I mostly stay in RV parks and campgrounds with electric though, so I haven't used it when boondocking. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I never thought of this, in a parking lot I shouldn't have to worry about disturbing anybody with the generator, and I'd rather be in the RV than sitting in the laundromat-

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had a small Class C that I had a Generator I loved because the I could always cook a hot meal for Lunch. The generator gave lots of opportunity to be flexible.

Clay with a 40 foot FW

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/4/2018 at 10:53 PM, Rvnotyet said:

I never thought of this, in a parking lot I shouldn't have to worry about disturbing anybody with the generator, and I'd rather be in the RV than sitting in the laundromat-

This one has been sold, but you might look at something in a used Phoenix Cruiser that fits your size and price.  Most come with a generator installed.  https://www.midwayrv.com/rv/grand+rapids+mi/other+classb/703/other+phoenix+cruiser+2100

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks!  This does look very interesting.  At the risk of being banned from this site, I do have to admit that I'm taken by the idea of finding a Toyota based class C, made only before about 1991(can you say OLD).  Maybe the lack of power these have is the reason many of them did not have a generator, even that amount of extra weight may have been a real issue.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Rvnotyet said:

Thanks!  This does look very interesting.  At the risk of being banned from this site, I do have to admit that I'm taken by the idea of finding a Toyota based class C, made only before about 1991(can you say OLD).  Maybe the lack of power these have is the reason many of them did not have a generator, even that amount of extra weight may have been a real issue.  

Are you serious?  Funny.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Years ago we had a 1986 Toyota based Dolphin Class C that we frequently boondocked with. I upgraded it from one to two "house" batteries and we carried a small 1KW generator with us that worked well for charging the batteries as needed. It was pretty quiet for an open frame generator, but we usually stayed in pretty remote areas with no human neighbors for miles, so I'm pretty sure it didn't annoy anyone for the ~2 hours it ran every other day or so. I considered adding a built-in generator at one time, but we really didn't want to give up the already limited storage space it would need. The little 1KW was smaller than a milk crate.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, two batteries and a small generator may actually work,  do you agree with me that with these little rvs even the size of your generator (or even having one) is something to think about?  Still hoping to find one, even if I have to empty my pockets to make weight...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another advantage to having a onboard generator if you have a Class C or Class A is if you are driving in summer in a hot location and your dash A/C is not keeping up you can fire up an onboard generator and run the roof A/C to cool down. I did this last summer leaving ID heading for AZ 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...