View Full Version : Microwave Tripping when running generator.

08-06-2013, 06:55 AM
We went dry camping for the first time, and overall it was great. I purchased the quiet Honda EU2000i, knowing it's just 2000 watts, and knowing it won't run the A/C. On one of the days, the microwave would not stay on. There was nothing else, other than the control panel for fridge, and maybe a light, being used. Has anyone had the same type of experience? On the previous day, it did not trip, as we did baked potatos in the mic. ???

08-06-2013, 07:07 AM
Most likely your convertor was drawing pretty hard. If you had been sitting without the generator going, all the lights, fridge, radio, water pump, water heater, etc.. will draw down the batteries. When you fire up the generator, the convertor will pick up all the 12 volt load and start re-charging the batteries.

08-06-2013, 07:10 AM
Don't forget you're also running the power converter. An 80 amp model can consume up to 1300 watts depending on what 12V things are on and how it's charging the battery.

08-06-2013, 09:10 AM
So....it sounds like the day the microwave worked, the battery was probably charged, and therefore not sucking up some of the power needed to replenish it, resulting in the power going right to the generator?? Sound right?

08-06-2013, 10:04 AM
Is it a convection microwave ? I have one and in microwave only mode it draws about 1,100 watts max. But in convection mode it draws 1,500 watts. A late vintage 55 amp AC to DC converter will always start up drawing 600 watts in a rapid charge mode and then will step down to top up or float charge mode once it has started. One other thought some generators have a "economy" switch that improves fuel efficiency but with the trade off of less maximum output, you might check your Honda Gen manual and see if yours has that.

08-06-2013, 10:21 AM
The mic is a mic/convection, but I think it was being used in the straight mic mode. It was the first time using the generator, and I had it on the eco-throttle. It would kick on louder when the microwave was used. On another related note, I was confused as to why the battery would fluctuate so much. (maybe we need a new one). After driving 3 hours, I unhitched, and then leveled the landing gear. When we tried to put the slides out, nothing. That's when I hooked back up to the truck, and I was checking the battery level the whole weekend. Sometimes it was reading "G", other times "C" (completely charged). Sometimes it would be be at "G", and then a couple hours later it would be up to "C", and not from being hooked up to the generator. Why would the level fluctuate during that time if it wasn't due to being hooked up to the gen??? When we left for the weekend, the battery was full, and without being hooked up to the truck (or the gen), we pulled all four slides in. Bottom line, no real problems, but I'm more curious about the battery level going up and down a little.....? I'm a rookie when it comes to generators, and the whole electrical thing, although I have read many a manual and diagram showing basic RV electrical systems, one of which was an attachment on this Bighorn site.

08-06-2013, 11:11 AM
Ill see if I can get my reply in before someone else types one faster than I.

The battery monitor lights are an "approximate" indication of battery voltage - while hooked up to shore power or the generator - they will always show top led - in this case your converter is providing charge voltage (ie greater than 12.8V). 12.8V is important as this is a fully charged battery voltage at it's "resting state". Resting state means no current in or out of the battery for at least 30 minutes. It should be noted that batteries take approximately 72 hours to recharge to 100%. A good link for additional information is the 12V Side of Life (http://www.marxrv.com/12volt/12volt.htm).

While batteries are being used - there can be a voltage drop corresponding to increased current use - ie if there is a large load on the batteries (ie lights, furnace, water heater, etc) the battery voltage will drop with increased current use - if you press the monitor test switch at this point, it will show less lights lighting up - ie lower voltage. In reality the idiot lights on the monitor panel are only good for an approximation of battery health.

If you are really concerned, or have a unnatural passion (like me) about your batteries and their conditions - I would suggest an aftermarket battery monitor like Xantrex LinkLite Battery monitor (http://www.xantrex.com/power-products/power-accessories/linklite-battery-monitor.aspx) or Trimetric Battery Monitor (http://www.bogartengineering.com/) or something similar. Otherwise a simple Digital Volt Ohm meter, and some general knowledge about batteries, will help you understand the health/charge of your battery.

hope this helps.

08-06-2013, 05:52 PM
If you can read volts, then you can do some estimates. If you are off shore power for 12 hours or more full charge will be 12.6 to 12.8 and 20% remaining will be about 12.2. If you are pulling amps then these will be slightly less. If you are on shore power and charging then its more difficult to tell but generally if your voltage is 13.5 or 13.6 you batteries are at 75 % or better and your charge is in slow charge mode or float mode. If its in fast charging mode due to batteries being less than 80% your voltage will be above 14 volts.

If you get below 12.2 then its best if you stop using your battery power if you can until you can charge them, draining lead-acid batteries below 20% really shortens their life.

08-06-2013, 08:13 PM
if your voltage is 13.5 or 13.6 you batteries are at 75 % or better and your charge is in slow charge mode or float mode. If its in fast charging mode due to batteries being less than 80% your voltage will be above 14 volts.

Randy I am not sure if the OP has a newer Progressive Dynamics 9200 or "intelligent charger". The 2009 units may have the standard charger with 13.6V constant charge.