Recommend an Electric Generator

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by sid700, Oct 21, 2009.

  1. sid700

    sid700 Supporting Member

    I am going to buy an electric generator. My power was out for 20 hours yesterday and my tank temp went down to 65F.

    Any advice would be appreciated. Features, brand names, where to buy. I've been surfing and I'm eyeing the Yamaha EF2400iS ($1,300).

    I'm not looking into Standby Generators, mainly because of the cost. I see the price of the generators, but I understand it has to be installed with a "switch" and what not. But l would welcome any advice/tips if you had one installed. Even a recommendation for your installer. TIA
  2. screebo

    screebo Supporting Member

    Hey Bernie,

    I recently chose this one. It's much lighter than other 3000 watt models at about 79 lbs and is quiet enough that your neighbors won't call the cops on you. It's a little pricey-er than you want but worth it.
  3. badbread

    badbread Guest

    THat's a sweet generator. A generator is one of the top toys to get on my list seeing this is earthquake, landslide, wildfire country.
  4. JAR

    JAR Supporting Member

    I got the Yamaha EF3000iSEB several years ago.
    Love it.
    Quiet. Has wheels. Quite heavy though.
    I wanted to be able to run the tank,fridge and a few lights in the house.
  5. andyman

    andyman Guest

    You need to think about many factors when choosing a generator. For me, my requirements for a generators are:

    Long Lasting
    Fuel can be stored without worry of age decay/contamination (propane or diesel)
    Fuel won't damage unit

    Most people who buy generators don't think about this but when they buy a generator for the lowest price possible they don't realize that cheap generators run on gasoline mostly, gasoline does not store well for long periods of time, can contaminate fuel system, and destroy the diaphrams of the carbs and foul the carberators. That means if you own one of these you'll have to drain the fuel after use.

    Diesel generators are great and don't suffer from gasolines negatives but they stink and generators that run these tend to be large.

    In a natural disaster the first thing anybody does is run to the local gas station buying fuel to run their gens or cars. If you had a generator that ran natural gas you could just hook it up to your house natural gas supply or to your propane tank (which can be stored for a long time).

    Natural gas burns cleaner then gas or propane but its supplied by the local utility .. It also has less BTU so don't expect the same amount of energy vs gasoline. You won't be able to get the full power output rating from your generator.

    The EF2400iS is a great generator. Yamaha's are one of the very few generators that are capable to be easily modified to run Tri Fuel (gasoline/propane/natural gas) because the carberator is a seperate unit and you can add an adapter between it and the engine.

    I believe the hondas have the carbs built into the intake manifold so you are required to modify it with a drill. Once done you can't run gasoline anymore (I think). Your better off with the yamaha.

    Anyway for me I have the Yamaha EFS3000iSEB with the mod for hook up to my homes natural gas. I run the generator once a year to ensure its lubricated. I do have gasoline in the generator just in case (with gasoline stabilizer but I generally don't run off gas so it only sits in the gas tank and does not go into the carbs.
  6. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Awesome post Andy! Don't often see this kind of break down. I was thinking Natural Gas probably would be good for everything except a major earthquake where your fuel source might get compromised, hell most insurance companies require you have one of those auto-shutoff valves installed on your gas line that turns off if it shakes too much.

    So does your generator tie into the house electric? Such that you need a breaker panel, or is it simply a matter of running an extension cord?

    For the time being I'll simply run my tank off my Prius with a good inverter :D
  7. screebo

    screebo Supporting Member

    For those wishing the abillty of fully automatic power failure transfer of power from grid to generator, a transfer switch is requried. Although they are primarily used for larger "whole house" generators such as a Silent Diesel, they are optional on some portables when they get above about 3000 watts. The switch can be as inexpensive as $200-300 but can cost $2000 to have a licensed electrician install it in your home. BTW the term Silent when used in Silent Generator is a joke. They are anything but silent.

    Bottom line: for occasional power failure, an extension cord is MUCH cheaper.
  8. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    Honda EU3000i is a very quiet and reliable genset. I've used a dozen or so and have even slept 5 feet from one.

    Draining fuel is no big deal. Loosing natural gas and not having a genset that can run on gas however could be a big deal. After the 89' quake my area had plenty of gasoline but no gas for two weeks. Kiss you tank good bye in that case.
  9. seminolecpa

    seminolecpa Past President

    I think if I am without power for 2 weeks my tank will be the least of my concerns.
  10. aalhait

    aalhait Guest

    Costco sells them cheaper!

    I have a 6500W Gen. I paid $600 after a $200 off coupon.

    Similar to that one and cheaper:
  11. aalhait

    aalhait Guest


    Preparing for the next big one....

    I've been thinking on the same thought you had...

    I have a Power Generator.... But I'm sure I will run out of Gas for sure since Gas stations will not operate for sometime...

    Anybody thought about placing a Gas Reserve Tank in your backyard? Something like 200G or 500G of Gasoline...

    Dangers? Pros/Cons?

    Is it even doable?

    Of course not necessary worrying about the tanks... I'm not sure they will be intanct after the next big one!
  12. fishme

    fishme Guest

  13. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Well remember if you don't have any power, there's a very good chance you won't have access to gasoline either as the pumps (or at the very least the payment system) are electric in nature.
  14. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    We had gas available two days after (several of our stations have back-up power). Just keep some cash around :)

    With the amount of cash I have in my tank it will definitely be a worry. I don't need power for anything else but my tank in a case like that. 2 weeks on a genset wouldn't be an issue for me :p
  15. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    Can't go two weeks with no internet? :p
  16. Gomer

    Gomer Honorary Member

    I have a 50pk of foam cups and a dozen 1000yrd spools of kite string just in case.
  17. DurTBear

    DurTBear Guest

    Haha! I'm with you on that. But I'm in the market for a generator for different reasons. I need to have a tv and satellite dish for my tailgates!
  18. tonggao

    tonggao Guest

    I have a Honda EU3000i and love it. Quiet, long lasting, and even looks good. But it is much heavier than I expected. So i installed wheels on it. Now I can roll it around, but lifting it into trunk is still a back breaking risk, so I might never take it onto a trip :(
  19. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    If you got more kite string we could call each other :lol:

    Isn't the poor mans napalm made using gas and Styrofoam?
  20. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    gasoline with anything to make it thick and viscous.

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