Generator – irv2 forums electricity experiments for preschoolers


We have the generator behind the rear axle and strongly recommend it. Better weight distribution and it frees an enormous amount of space up front. Believe it or not we’ve found, for whatever reason, it is quieter in the rear then in the front. We’ve had both front and rear mounted units and this is true even in the living area not just the bed room. That’s our experience.

Unless one is going to use the generator a great deal I strongly recommend LP. With an LP generator it can sit for months and will start every time. Less overall maintenance. Not so with gas or diesel. That said, LP uses a bit more fuel. It’s a choice but that choice is dependent on frequency of use, IMO. A 5th wheel is different than a motorhome where the primary fuel is diesel, that fuel is always fresh and the generator is used a great deal during road travel. Not so in a 5er. Naturally a gas or diesel unit requires more weight to carry the extra fuel beyond the LP assuming you will have any LP on board with your rig.

We almost always camp in campgrounds with full hookups. (Reasons omitted.) We do full-time. There have been some sporadic times we have used the genny while camped. However, most times, we use our gen when rolling down the road to run the A/C during hot weather to keep the inside of the RV cool (usually 75F) during transit. However, there was the one night when the regional transmission line was cut, and we ran our gen all night in our DRV. It was in the front. Probably would have been better to open all windows and run the Fantastic fan (low of 87F). Noise was horrible! Wish we had the NH then!

As DTVGuy said, it depends upon your needs. Propane is extremely clean. With 80 pounds of propane on board, one could pretty much survive 2 days of 100+ temps with full tanks. Propane allows cleaner oil, less carbon build-up on cylinders and valves, and emissions are CO2 and H2O. Besides, propane generators are the "quietest".

With diesel, one has the additional diesel tank . . . so how do you put diesel in that tank? Diesel is a "heavy" fuel, more like oil than gasoline. So if you spill any, it is like an oil leak down the side of the RV. It is heavier than propane, so how much of a tank do you want. It also adds the fact that you are carrying an extra tank of fuel in the RV. (Think about that.) And diesel gennys are loud!

But as said, it depends upon one’s needs. However, I will say, on a New Horizons, one can get a 100# propane tank like a Class A with two 40# propane bottles. With all the safety valves, etc., it seems to me propane is a better solution than diesel or gasoline with a plastic tank.

Again, as I stated before . . . One should make their own decisions. For our use, the propane generator is our best solution. It may not be for you. I have only had to pull any of our three fifth wheels through a truck stop only about 6 times, and that was for air for the fifth wheel tires in a pinch. (Leaking tire valves.) We do not boondock. The one time we had to use our genny all night was in a DRV when the genny was under the bedroom! I will repeat, propane is the cleanest running fuel, but that is along with CNG and hydrogen. (I should also say, we have a 45 gallon diesel tank in the F450 bed with auto-fill. I don’t like pulling any fiver through the truck pumps.)

Now, if I boondocked a lot, I might want a diesel generator as the contained heat value of diesel is the best compared to gasoline and propane. Propane is the least heat value. But we don’t. This "argument" is based on different needs. My "pro-propane" view is based on what I need. One must make their own decisions based upon their own needs.