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Old 09-28-2015, 01:16 PM   #1
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More usage = more questions

Took our 19 out to Aspen to see the leaves change colors. The trip went well; but a few more "learn as you go" questions.

This was a worst case scenario for our 12v power usage. We camped at 10'000' where my wife's Oxygen needs increase, the days are shorter (less solar), the nights colder (furnace), and we camped in the trees (kinda necessary if you're looking at leaves). We pretty much ran the dual 12v batteries from 100% to 60ish every night. Solar would recharge them to 80%. I brought a borrowed Honda EU2000i generator and used it nightly to top things off.

The EU2000i seems overkill, it never really ran faster than idle. Has anyone used a EU1000i? Smaller and quieter seem desirable to me, I will never use it for anything other than a glorified battery charger. Also, using the EU2000i through the WFCO seemed to take an eternity to charge the last 20% (eternity being 2 hrs). Is there a better/faster way to do this? The batteries must be 100% every night (wife is fond of breathing).


When we bought the trailer, I intended for the U-shaped dinette to stay a dinette permanently. The Mrs and my dogs disagree. She's dropping the dinette nightly and using it as a doggy bed. Seems there are 2 pneumatic pedestals that folks are using. Is one preferable to the other? I'm primarily interested in ease of use for my wife.
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Old 09-28-2015, 01:18 PM   #2
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I believe you can purchase a battery charger and plug it into the generator and then directly to the batteries, this will be quicker.
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Old 09-28-2015, 01:20 PM   #3
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I replaced the converter/charge section of the WFCO following this post:
Xantrex Charger Installation and Wiring Upgrades

Or you could use an external battery charger.

A 1000 watt generator can charge the batteries just as fast.
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Old 09-28-2015, 01:33 PM   #4
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I have Honda EU1000i and I just connect to the battery terminals with alligator clips ( came with genset ). I don't use a battery charger. I've also plugged the trailer power cord in to the genset but that is slower to charge.
I don't have definitive performance stats, but it works for me.
However, an EU2000i doesn't weight much more or take up more space and would be more useful in a power-outage at home. Costs more too, however.
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Old 09-28-2015, 02:40 PM   #5
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Sturski...a question,

We haven't been able to dry camp since my wife got put on an oxygen machine. Was told don't sleep without it. We now overnight only at campgrounds with electric hookups because we're fearful running the oxygen machine all night would run down our trailer batteries.

So... I have been giving serious thought to buying my first generator, probably the EU2000i because of reputation. Your primary need for a genny is to re-charge your batteries after a full night of using the oxygen machine? Did I understand your post correctly? This suggests to me my two 6-v batteries will easily survive the draw from an oxygen machine so long as I do a genny-re-charge next morning. Is that your experience? I have no clue what amps our oxygen machine draws.
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Old 09-28-2015, 03:04 PM   #6
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Quote:
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...
I have no clue what amps our oxygen machine draws.
Myron,

Just before you turn it on for the night plug it into your Kill-A-Watt. In the morning hit the KWH/Hour key to get the power used for the night. With that number it is easy to calculate the total overnight power usage. (As I recall you took some measurements earlier which led us to believe Nancy's machine would not make it overnight on batteries.)
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Old 09-28-2015, 03:18 PM   #7
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"...I recall you took some measurements earlier which led us to believe Nancy's machine would not make it overnight on batteries."

Yes that's been my assumption so Sturski's post got my immediate attention. Will-do Kill-a-Watt, paying closer attention.
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Old 09-28-2015, 03:35 PM   #8
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The different manufacturers & models of oxygen concentrators draw different amounts of amps. Even the liters per minute setting can make a difference as does pulse vs continuous setting. Some are available with a 12v power supply, some state they cannot be run on an inverter, others require a pure sine wave inverter. There are so many differences that it is difficult to determine if dry camping is practical.

While they may be expensive, there are portable machines, particularly pulse under 2 liters per minute that can run for 8 hours on their own batteries. If you do a Google search for portable oxygen concentrators, you can see what is available.

If you do use a Kill-O-Watt to check the concentrator you have, be sure to run it full length of time you would use it while camping rather than taking a short sample & multiplying the hours. Most of the machines cycle, and the true amp hours can only be determines real time.
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Old 09-28-2015, 03:56 PM   #9
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Will do, Jon, thanks. I just re-read Sturski and notice he does not actually say his wife uses an oxygen concentrator.
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Old 09-28-2015, 04:52 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MyronL View Post
Sturski...a question,

We haven't been able to dry camp since my wife got put on an oxygen machine. Was told don't sleep without it. We now overnight only at campgrounds with electric hookups because we're fearful running the oxygen machine all night would run down our trailer batteries.
My wife uses a Sequal Equinox for sleeping while camping. She runs it at 2 lpm continuous flow at high altitude, 1.5 if lower. It uses 40-45% of my battery capacity overnight on 2lpm, and 30-35% on 1.5. She uses a different machine for hiking, so it gets turned off in the morning.


I've considered running 4x6v batteries; but it doesn't seem necessary. We carry 2 fully charged 24cell batteries as backup, I could run it from the truck, if necessary.

Edited to add:

I had Reace wire a single 12v outlet nearest the battery with 8 gauge wire. The startup surge on the concentrator is pretty significant. Once it is running, it's not too bad.
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