Can I link a Honda eu2000 and a 2000 watt inverter

EW1234EW1234 Registered Users Posts: 1
Have a 15000 btu air conditioner and want to run with my Honda eu2000. Can I use the link for the two generators that Honda sells, one with the generator and the other on the inverter?

Comments

  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Can I link a Honda eu2000 and a 2000 watt inverter

    Welcome to the forum.

    Sorry to say the answer is "no" or perhaps "not without a lot of trouble and high probability of fireworks". The simple fact is neither of these were designed to work together in this way.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,155 admin
    Re: Can I link a Honda eu2000 and a 2000 watt inverter

    The short answer is no. Placing to AC power sources in parallel which are not designed to be paralleled will usually let out the magic smoke somewhere.

    The longer answer is, it is possible it could work--but I doubt it will... The Honda eu2000i does current sharing by (I am guessing) "droop" sharing. The first device is the master (sets frequency) and the second generator becomes the slave (just follows the frequency of the "master"). With droop sharing, the generator may do something like this: If AC line is at 120 VAC, output 0% of rated current. if AC line is at 115 volts, output 50% of rated current. If AC voltage is 110 volts, then output 100% of rated current... That way, each genset carries about 1/2 the load current. If it did not do droop sharing (and there are no control lines between the gensets), one generator may output 100% at 118 volts, and the other set to 115 volts outputs no additional current.

    Note the above is guess work and is just there to explain how it could work.

    If you had a TSW (true sine wave) Inverter, and started the inverter first, then the generator, it may not blow up... However, if the inverter is not set for droop sharing, it will not carry 1/2 the power of the common line... It may carry none, 100% or even the generator could back drive the TSW inverter and actually begin charging the battery bank (and tripping generator/inverter safety devices).

    So--I would strongly warn against doing the interconnect (and if the inverter is MSW type, don't even try). The chances that it would work well are low--And you run the risk of damaging your equipment or even, possibly, starting a fire.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Can I link a Honda eu2000 and a 2000 watt inverter

    If it were possible to get the two sources in perfect AC sync before and after they were tied together, it would work, but unfortunately as others have said, these units were not designed to do that. Thus any attempt to join them will surely result in disaster. Your best bet is either a manual, or automatic transfer switch which opens one of the supply sources before connecting the other. I've seen inverters destroyed after they were accidentally left in circuit when the generator was activated. :cry:
  • john pjohn p Solar Expert Posts: 814 ✭✭
    Re: Can I link a Honda eu2000 and a 2000 watt inverter

    THIS IS A DEFINATE NO TO EVEN TRY.
    Generators tend to "wander" a bit around the set frequency,wspecially if suddenly going from no load to above half load. No generator can change its speed instantly.
    Many inverters do not have exact correct output frequency.

    So you end up with a inverter mabe 61hz a generator 59hz and not stable.. Result = disaster

    I see all have given similar replies.
  • vtmapsvtmaps Solar Expert Posts: 3,738 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Can I link a Honda eu2000 and a 2000 watt inverter
    john p wrote: »
    Generators tend to "wander" a bit around the set frequency, especially if suddenly going from no load to above half load. No generator can change its speed instantly.
    Many inverters do not have exact correct output frequency.

    So you end up with a inverter mabe 61hz a generator 59hz and not stable.

    John P, I agree with your conclusion (don't do it), but I think you are right for the wrong reason. The Honda eu2000 is an inverter generator. Its output is entirely synthetic and the generator speed does not affect the output frequency.

    As the OP says, Honda sells a 'link' to hook up two eu2000s and parallel their output. One becomes master and the other slave. You are, in effect, hooking up two inverters. I have no idea what the 'link' is or how it works.

    vtMaps
    4 X 235watt Samsung, Midnite ePanel, Outback VFX3524 FM60 & mate, 4 Interstate L16, trimetric, Honda eu2000i
  • john pjohn p Solar Expert Posts: 814 ✭✭
    Re: Can I link a Honda eu2000 and a 2000 watt inverter

    ok im part wrong ,but not really wrong as with any inverters there has to be a connecion to the input of the output to sync the frequency. There is no way you are ever going to find that point on another inverter to lock it to the generators inverter frequency.
    This can only be done SUCCESSFULLY if they are from the same manufacturer and of the same type.

    IF you have some inverters to spare you can experiment with it until you get it to work.
    I eventually got a grid tie inverter to lock into a battery inverter pretending to be the grid.
    But I got through 3 x1500 w grid tie inverters and 4 x2kw battery inverters..
    The problems are different models from even same manufacturers use different topologies and different frequencies to convert down to 60 or 50 hz..
    Another problem is temperature differences can make small but significant differences to output frequency,then they drift apart and .boom. unless specifically designed to be master and slave.

    Have fun if you want to give it a go. BUT BE PREPARED FOR DISASTER.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Can I link a Honda eu2000 and a 2000 watt inverter

    You'd be hooking up two inverters that are not designed to be "stacked".

    If you connect the EU to an ordinary battery-based inverter the output wave forms stand almost no chance of ever being in sync. Neither generators nor inverters have 100% exact-on frequency; they always have a +/- factor. Even if they were both precisely 60 Hz they inevitably would be out of phase with each other. There is nothing to keep them in-line.

    If you connect the EU to a standard GT inverter it will sync to the generator's output. But it will need someplace to send all its power. If there's not sufficient load to take it, the power will back-feed the gen and fry it.

    The EU's are meant to sync with another of their kind because in essence the inverters they contain are stackable and both have identical circuitry to regulate output. They're designed to work together the same as a pair of Outback VFX's can. But taking one EU and one inverter, even a stackable one, is not the same thing as they aren't designed to adjust their output according to what the other is supplying.

    The most likely outcomes are: 1). instant fireworks; 2). it works briefly then fires; 3). it works for a while then fries; 4). it works long enough to fool you it's working, then fries. The odds of it working long enough to be considered functional without damaging equipment are so miniscule that they fall into the "not in this universe" category.
  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Can I link a Honda eu2000 and a 2000 watt inverter

    Even if by some strange accident the two are in perfect sync when the switch is initially closed, within a second at most they will be 180 out of sync and the smoke will pour forth. Have your camera ready, the photos will be very interesting.
  • raphidaeraphidae Registered Users Posts: 1
    edited July 24 #10
    This is an old thread, but I figured I'd leave my experience for those searching for this later (as a friend of mine did find this via Google while searching for it).

    After some research I have tried connecting a generator/inverter to different AC sources. Mostly I tried with a Kipor IG2600, but those have a similar, if not exactly the same, sync circuit as the Honda EU2000. I also have a bunch of Honda generator/inverters, both EU2000's and  EU22i's (which superseded the EU2000) and have also connected Hondas and Kipors together with no problems.

    The parallel kit from Honda (or Kipor) is nothing more than paralleling the outputs of two generator/inverters. The banana plugs present for the parallel kit are connected directly parallel to one of the plug outputs of the generator/inverter (See the wiring diagram available from Honda. Though, do note that the banana plugs are paralleled with the AC output BEFORE the breaker!).

    So it's actually possible to just take two male mains plugs and connect them in parallel to a single female socket. The official kits do the same thing, but add a breaker and use the banana plugs (mainly so there's not a hot mains plug laying on the ground if one is accidentally pulled, since the banana plugs have a shield). The "signal" being sent between the paralleled generator/inverters is nothing more than the frequency of the voltage provided which obviously is transmitted over the power lines.

    The "Master/Slave" sync configuration is not complex. The first generator/inverter you turn on, if it does not detect an already present voltage/waveform in the first few seconds, it will just completely turn off its sync circuit and will simply try to keep 50Hz (or 60Hz in the US) on its own. This is the "Master" mode.

    If, however, it *does* detect a voltage/waveform in the first few seconds, it will try to follow the present waveform the best it can. The source of this waveform doesn't matter, and it won't try to correct the frequency or anything, it will just try to follow what's already present. And if it wanders too much (outside the range it will sync to, <45Hz or >65Hz) it will simply decouple from the source until you turn it off and on again. This is the "Slave" mode.

    This is also why you can safely parallel almost infinite generator/inverters (I've used up to 10 in parallel, 6 being Kipor 4 being Honda) with zero problems. The first one (turned on first) will determine the frequency, and any other generator parallelled to it (turned on later) will sync with it. Should the "Master" be turned off, trip or otherwise be disconnected, one of the other ones will turn its sync circuit off and become "Master". This happens automatically.

    Anyway, the Honda/Kipor generator/inverters will sync to anything resembling a sine wave between 45 and 65 Hz. I have had no problems connecting one to mains (power grid) as stand-by (when expecting brown- or black-outs). In this use-case it will just run in low rpm mode if eco mode is on, and rev up when the grid fails. If the grid is completely dead, the generator/inverter will switch its sync circuit off for "Master" mode after a minute or so. When the grid returns it will detect that the grid is not syncing to it and switches its sync circuit back on (goes back to "Slave" mode). The larger the phase shift when the grid comes back on, the faster the generator/inverter will decide it will have to sync, as it is not being synced to.

    I have had no problems either connecting the Honda/Kipor generator/inverters in parallel to a proper 12VDC to 230VAC (non-syncing) sine wave inverter in my RV, and this has also worked fine with el-cheapo inverters outputting a sawtooth or even a square waveform (Note: The resulting waveform will resemble an average of the two when the load is 50/50. If the load isn't shared 50/50, the resulting waveform will resemble more of one or the other depending on the ratio of load sharing). Besides that, paralleling to a standard diesel generator (non-inverter) with wandering frequency also works fine. The generator/inverter will happily wander along with it.

    So simply put, the Honda and Kipor (and other generator/inverters designed for parallel operation) will sync to any AC source they are connected to. And they are protected against problems that would let the magic smoke out; if for some reason it can't keep the sync, it will automatically decouple. So you can safely parallel one (or more) of these generator/inverters to any AC source of roughly the same voltage.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,155 admin
    Raphidae,

    Interesting information... I am not sure that I would suggest people do the "sharing" as a matter of course--But from what you describe... It does sound like something that does work.

    Thank you,
    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • jonrjonr Solar Expert Posts: 1,117 ✭✭✭✭
    edited July 25 #12
    Be cautious about pairing a Honda "i" generator with some other inverter that isn't so smart.    Turn-on sequence matters and I can imagine cases where a non-smart inverter turns itself off and then automatically (or manually) comes back on.   Not clear that the inverter would survive this.  Would be nice if there were inverters known/designed to work safely with a Honda under all scenarios.


    Would be interesting to know more about how the Honda determines how much load to take (might not be the mix you want).  Probably some voltage thresholds.
  • rovrov Registered Users Posts: 1
    Thank you raphidae ,I thought the same thing , there is no sure way of knowing unless you try it , Honda inverters have decently build self protection circuitry, the problem I see is when gas runs out on the gen side and the paralleled battery powered inverter is still on , how is the offline Honda going to react with that?
  • ewbewb Registered Users Posts: 11 ✭✭
    Yes, thank you Raphidae. Very interesting.

    It has been asked elsewhere if two eu2000i inverters could possibly be synced up to produce 120/240 split phase by hooking them to opposite legs of an autotransformer. It *should* work of course to hook them to the same leg, but well, ... I like the symmetry/balance of having one generator per leg.

    What do you folks think?

    Raphidae, your post suggests that the master does not provide some special in-band synchronization signal (pulses?) to which the slave generator syncs to. I fear that such a signal might be lost across the magnetics.

    It has also been discussed on this forum somewhere that an eu2000i didn't have enough surge capacity to magnetize the core of an SPX-240 (4 kW to 6 kW autotransformer from Outback power). Much ado about soft-start circuits, but I thought the best idea was to just use a smaller, cheaper autotransformer (2 kW are available for < $200). I'm thinking of trying that out first, but obviously that's too small to handle 2 generators. My thought was to parallel two identical 2kW transformers interconnected via a 3-pole switch (or better: circuit breaker). So with the switch open, get the core of 1 transformer fired up with 1 generator, then close the switch to get the 2nd transformer going (with the 1st genny), and finally start the 2nd generator.

    Uhmm, will the two transformers share the load equally? If not, is it stable, or does the overloaded one grab more of the load until it bursts into flames?

    I like this because two eu2000i's are cheaper than even an eu3000 and certainly an eu7000 and one could run 1 generator until you really needed both, and save on fuel vs a larger generator all the time.

    Caveat emptor of course. I have no idea how load balancing between the two parallel generators works except perhaps as BB described above, or if this idea would disrupt that?
    42 300W Solarworld. SB6.0, SB3.8, SB3.0 Owner installed. Mitsu. Hyperheat, State HPX-80. All electric, net+, climate zone 6.

  • ewbewb Registered Users Posts: 11 ✭✭
    Oh, sorry yeah I'm in the USA where we have this crazy split-phase power system that drives us nuts. Count yourself lucky!
    42 300W Solarworld. SB6.0, SB3.8, SB3.0 Owner installed. Mitsu. Hyperheat, State HPX-80. All electric, net+, climate zone 6.

  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,020 ✭✭✭✭
    ewb said:

    Yes, thank you Raphidae. Very interesting.

    It has been asked elsewhere if two eu2000i inverters could possibly be synced up to produce 120/240 split phase by hooking them to opposite legs of an autotransformer. It *should* work of course to hook them to the same leg, but well, ... I like the symmetry/balance of having one generator per leg.....

    If it's your gear, try it. Somehow, the fancy sync cable, synchronizes the 2 generators, either with sync command, or one follows the others output. If they simply follow output, the autotransformer might work.

    HOWEVER, I've heard of many issues with low quality transformers and inverter generators that go into instant overload.

    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,155 admin
    ewb,

    There are no special sync pulses between the two "i" gensets... The second "i" genset detects that there is 120 VAC (US model) when starting, and if present, the second genset goes into a current based following mode--Much like a Grid Tied AC inverter. Probably uses some sort of "droop sharing" to share current between gensets (i.e., 115 VAC = 100% current output, 120 VAC = 0% current output).

    The problem with trying to make 120/240 VAC split phase between the two gensets, is there is no clean way to sync up the second genset to the one "common neutral connection" (which should have zero volts on it if the neutral is ground referenced/bonded).

    These smaller gensets are generally floating AC outputs (no frame ground/earth ground reference to the AC output). But trying to sync to a genset with just one sense lead is not anything that would work reliably. There would need to be a "sync/stacking" cable to synchronize the two 120 VAC gensets into a split phase 120/240 output.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • ewbewb Registered Users Posts: 11 ✭✭
    Bill, I didn't mean to imply that I thought there were "sync pulses" or something like that.  It had occurred to me that it was possible, but Raphidea's post above indicates that is not the case, so I agree with your 1st paragraph.  That makes me still think this might work.

    Yes, the center tap of the transformers would be grounded, so I expect I'd only need a 2-pole switch or breaker to connect two transformers. Good point. I see absolutely no difference between the two legs of an autotransformer except that from N to each hot terminal are 180 degrees out of phase (ie: you have 240 VAC between the 2 hot legs if one leg is driven by a 120 VAC input). If they aren't, then the transformer is broken or is going to burn out RSN.  The fact that the output windings of both generators are isolated (per the EU2000i manual, and common practice in the US) is what makes this possible IMHO. So I see no reason why I can't get the 2nd generator to sync up 180 degrees out of phase with the 1st, since it is tied to an output that is already 180 degrees out of phase with the running 1st generator. Ok, there might be a reason, but I don't yet know what it is.

    Mike, as for the transformer causing instant overload - sure. I'm just hoping it won't with a transformer "right-sized" at 2 kVA. It is already reported that this happens with the Outback Power autoformer which is rated for 4 kVA (or 6 kVA with fan cooling). I think it has a beefier iron core then the ones I am contemplating which weigh about 24 lbs each.  If it is a problem even with the smaller core then I'd have to look into a soft-start circuit of some sort.  I think it is pretty common to hook generators to an autoformer, but maybe in fact they do need to be much larger than an EU2000i, or not an inverter/generator.  I just don't know.

    BTW: I am considering the Hammond 546-170JE autoformer.  I'm not sure what the difference would be between a low quality transformer and a better one - not being a transformer expert. If you can enlighten me, I'd appreciate that.

    Other possibilities include Victron's toroidal autotransformer (rated for 32 amps), or Victron's toroidal isolation transformer (wired as an autotransformer). This even has a soft start circuit on the input leg. More money of course.

    I am NOT asking someone else to try this!  In fact please DO NOT based on my posts!  I'm just considering the idea, and unless I hear a really good reason why this won't work, then I'm contemplating trying it myself. One reason I'm willing to is that I'm pretty sure it would work with the 2 generators driving the same leg of the transformer - if it will even start the transformer at all. That's the first question and I am thinking of bench testing that first.

    If I do some experiments, I'll report back here.

    Thanks!

    42 300W Solarworld. SB6.0, SB3.8, SB3.0 Owner installed. Mitsu. Hyperheat, State HPX-80. All electric, net+, climate zone 6.

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,155 admin
    I guess it could work if you usea single transformer witha center tap.

    With one genset running,I think there would be voltage on the other winding (your other 120 vac lead 180 degrees out of phase).

    The second genset could sync with that....

    Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • ewbewb Registered Users Posts: 11 ✭✭
    Oh, and I should have said that from various posts and from a look at the eu2000i schematics, there is nothing fancy about the sync cables. They are physically tied to the neutral and line output wires except with the breakers bypassed.  It appears that you can just tie the outputs of two generators together to exactly the same effect as using the sync cables.
    42 300W Solarworld. SB6.0, SB3.8, SB3.0 Owner installed. Mitsu. Hyperheat, State HPX-80. All electric, net+, climate zone 6.

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,155 admin
    Yes, you can use "suicide plugs) and get about the same results (cord with 2 male plugs that connect to the gensets... The blades are hot from the other paralled genset).

    Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • ewbewb Registered Users Posts: 11 ✭✭
    Uhmm, yeah. Seems hard to avoid the suicide plugs except by using the banana jacks. Pull out just one plug and it remains hot from the other generator ...  that's probably why Honda (and everyone else) does it this way, not because anything fancy is going on in the sync kit.

    I guess I'd use the banana jacks in a real implementation.

    I'm beginning to price this out from online sources. Bad news is that its surprisingly expensive, especially if I had to use the $500+ Victron toroids.  Well, part of engineering is figuring this out too.  Right now, 1 EU7000i looks cheaper :). I need to look at the fuel costs more closely.
    42 300W Solarworld. SB6.0, SB3.8, SB3.0 Owner installed. Mitsu. Hyperheat, State HPX-80. All electric, net+, climate zone 6.

  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,020 ✭✭✭✭
    a single EU2000 works fine with this transformer wired as autotransformer.  (the 240VAC winding)  All 115 lbs coper and steel


    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • ewbewb Registered Users Posts: 11 ✭✭
    Thanks. Ouch that's a big beast, but maybe that is what it takes?
    42 300W Solarworld. SB6.0, SB3.8, SB3.0 Owner installed. Mitsu. Hyperheat, State HPX-80. All electric, net+, climate zone 6.

  • jonrjonr Solar Expert Posts: 1,117 ✭✭✭✭
    edited October 23 #25
    Supposedly, a transformer sized to normally never exceed 50% of saturation (ie, much bigger than needed) will have less remnant magnetism and less startup surge.   50% load should also be near the peak efficiency point (but not a big effect).   Type of steel also matters (a lot).

    Toroidal transformers will have high startup surge.  

    You can make either work with soft-start.  Or switching on at peak of waveform.
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,020 ✭✭✭✭
    ewb said:
    Thanks. Ouch that's a big beast, but maybe that is what it takes?
    But it's only a 3KVA transformer.  Built the right way.   No way can it be compared to the 4kva, 40 lb autotransformer, which I've heard, does not work with inverter-generators.
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • ewbewb Registered Users Posts: 11 ✭✭
    I'm getting the picture: I am way out of my league here :).  I found a paper on transient modelling of transformers and see that there are lots of parameters like number of turns, wire size, core material, core shape & size, etc.  Back to magnetics 101 I guess. I did gather that toroids are efficient and quiet but have a nasty inrush.  I see that Victron's toroidal isolation transformers have a built in inrush limiter but their autoformers for the US market do not.   I can see smoke and fire in my future if I start experimenting. Hmm, maybe go learn more before trying anything rash.

    Thanks for all the input!
    42 300W Solarworld. SB6.0, SB3.8, SB3.0 Owner installed. Mitsu. Hyperheat, State HPX-80. All electric, net+, climate zone 6.

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