which auto start generator to buy -

I have a Victron Phoenix 24V 2000VA, 230V Compact Sinewave Inverter.

It has a relay which can be used to start a generator.

I would like to buy a generator that has an output of less than 3000 watts.
A generator with an output of about 1500 watts would be perfect.

Can anyone recommend a generator which is compatible with my inverter?

Comments

  • Blackcherry04Blackcherry04 Solar Expert Posts: 2,490 ✭✭✭
    Re: which auto start generator to buy -

    This Guy modifies a Honda EU3000, It's the smallest I'v ever seen. He also has done a EU2000, it's pricy. Call him.

    http://www.pinellaspowerproducts.com/products/2/products-for-honda-generators
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: which auto start generator to buy -

    Welcome to the forum John.
    almendro wrote: »
    I have a Victron Phoenix 24V 2000VA, 230V Compact Sinewave Inverter.

    It has a relay which can be used to start a generator.

    I would like to buy a generator that has an output of less than 3000 watts.
    A generator with an output of about 1500 watts would be perfect.

    Can anyone recommend a generator which is compatible with my inverter?

    Regrettably small generators tend not to be electric start and so not compatible with autostart systems (which also require automatic choking - another feature missing from small engines).

    Check the link Blackcherry provided and see if that is suitable. Otherwise you may have to buy a larger gen or make your own modifications to a small one (not easy).
  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 2,763 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: which auto start generator to buy -

    You will get better advice with more information on your system. I've been looking for how to input signature info myself.
    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: which auto start generator to buy -
    softdown wrote: »
    You will get better advice with more information on your system. I've been looking for how to input signature info myself.

    That's easy. :)
    Click "Private Messages"
    On the left side is a box called "My Settings"
    First sub heading "My Profile"
    Fourth choice is "Edit Signature"
    Click that and you get a new page with a dialog box that allows you to enter and change signature info.
  • stephendvstephendv Solar Expert Posts: 1,571 ✭✭
    Re: which auto start generator to buy -
    almendro wrote: »
    I have a Victron Phoenix 24V 2000VA, 230V Compact Sinewave Inverter.

    Be aware that the "Phoenix" model is just an inverter, no charger built in. You'd need an external charger too to be able to use the gen. As Cariboocoot mentioned, you don't often find small gens with two-wire start. There are some inverter-generators that come with a wireless key fob start which might be just as convenient. Where are you based?
  • almendroalmendro Registered Users Posts: 4
    Re: which auto start generator to buy -

    The details of my system are here
    http://cortijoblog.com/2012/11/05/our-domestic-solar-power-system-specifications/

    In my opinion a solution to my question is worth finding.
    Just having a small generator capacity means a massive reduction in the price of a solar system because it is necessary to buy less batteries.

    I have been on other forums and people say that it is necessary to have battery back up for 5 days.
    I don't agree. I am happy to have battery back up for just 24 hours.
    In the summer I never use a generator except for cloudy days (which is not often)

    In the winter I use the generator a bit more.
    My current generator is only 900 watts.
    I also have a 2500 watt generator which I never use (unless I want to use the vaccum cleaner)

    They both only charge at around 14 amps so if I use the big one it is just a waste of fuel.
    The 900 watt generator uses a small jam jar of fuel per hour.
    After an hour or so of charging the charge rate goes down to around 10 amps.

    Why would anyone need a massive generator?
    Batteries are best charged slowly

    I have been looking on internet and a good solution may be a propane generator which needs no choke.

    I am in Spain so it may be difficult to buy from the USA.
    I will follow the link to the honda which was mentioned and ask them how they do it.
  • stephendvstephendv Solar Expert Posts: 1,571 ✭✭
    Re: which auto start generator to buy -

    Agree, a 5 day battery is not economically viable. But why are you only charging the batteries with 14A? OPzS can typically be charged up to 20% of their C20 capacity, so that'll be about 60A.

    Another option you have in the Spanish sun is to increase your PV capacity to provide more power in cloudy days so that you use the generator even less... and/or get an MPPT charge controller instead of the PWM you currently have to harvest more power in winter. With more PV and less gen runtime there will be fewer days to need the auto-start. At current PV prices of around 0.7Euro/Watt you can get a lot more PV compared to buying a new generator with auto-start + fuel costs...... and that's IF you can find a small genset with that feature at all. Most in that range don't even have electric start, never mind auto!
  • almendroalmendro Registered Users Posts: 4
    Re: which auto start generator to buy -

    It looks like I may have found what I am looking for although it is a very powerful.

    There is a generator specially designed to work with victron inverters in a solar system for around $1000.

    I have spoken to someone who has one and he says it is good.

    It is made by a Spanish company.
    I don't know if they do export but as I live in Spain it is OK for me.

    There is info on this page.
    http://www.genergy.es/en/gasolinegeneratorguardiansc6.html
  • almendroalmendro Registered Users Posts: 4
    Re: which auto start generator to buy -
    stephendv wrote: »
    Agree, a 5 day battery is not economically viable. But why are you only charging the batteries with 14A? OPzS can typically be charged up to 20% of their C20 capacity, so that'll be about 60A.

    Another option you have in the Spanish sun is to increase your PV capacity to provide more power in cloudy days so that you use the generator even less... and/or get an MPPT charge controller instead of the PWM you currently have to harvest more power in winter. With more PV and less gen runtime there will be fewer days to need the auto-start. At current PV prices of around 0.7Euro/Watt you can get a lot more PV compared to buying a new generator with auto-start + fuel costs...... and that's IF you can find a small genset with that feature at all. Most in that range don't even have electric start, never mind auto!

    The reason why I only charge with 14 Amp is because that is what the charger decides to give them. I have always believed that the charger was intelligent enough to give the correct charge in the same way as a normal charge controller. Even though the charger is 30amps it never actually goes anywhere near that. Maybe I should read the manual.

    It is true what you say about more panels. I can get 85 watts input on a cloudy day which is enough for 2 laptops and a modem which is all I need.
    If I had more panels I could bump that up to 120 watts.

    Thanks for your answer
  • stephendvstephendv Solar Expert Posts: 1,571 ✭✭
    Re: which auto start generator to buy -

    I almost bought one of those Genergy units, I think they're assembled in Spain from parts made in China. All support and spares are from La Rioja so repairs shouldn't be a problem.

    But $1000 is serious money that could almost double the PV you currently have and since you already have 2 other generators..... I know I'd rather go for the PV :cool:
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