1. Welcome Hearth.com Guests and Visitors - Please enjoy our forums!
    Hearth.com GOLD Sponsors who help bring the site content to you:
    Hearthstone Soapstone and Cast-Iron stoves( Wood, Gas or Pellet Stoves and Inserts)
    Caluwe - Passion for Fire and Water ( Pellet and Wood Hydronic and Space Heating)

Any Harman Owners Using Portable Generators?

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by Rokal, Oct 31, 2011.

  1. Rokal

    Rokal Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2011
    Messages:
    60
    Loc:
    Long Island, NY

    Helpful Sponsor Ads!





  2. egrims

    egrims New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2011
    Messages:
    8
    Loc:
    Hopedale, MA
    I'm actually looking for one now too with all the crazy weather we've been having. I managed to espace the power outage this time around but I lost a bunch of food in that hurricane earlier in the year. I'm looking to do both the stove and the fridge with some overhead in case I need to throw the sub-pump on there for a few minutes. Been looking at this one:

    http://www.amazon.com/Generac-5982-...JHSU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1320089119&sr=8-1

    Amazon has it for $420 from them with free shipping but they are currently out of stock. I'm pretty sure they were in stock this morning too...should have pulled the trigger.
  3. egrims

    egrims New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2011
    Messages:
    8
    Loc:
    Hopedale, MA
  4. gbreda

    gbreda Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    Messages:
    1,256
    Loc:
    Lakes Region, NH
    I believe that an inverter with true sine wave power is strongly recommended for a Harmon. That logic board runs everything.
  5. egrims

    egrims New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2011
    Messages:
    8
    Loc:
    Hopedale, MA
    Do you know of one that they recommend?

    I know someone who runs his Accentra Insert off a generator like the one in the link, not to say that it's the correct or best thing for it though...
  6. gbreda

    gbreda Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    Messages:
    1,256
    Loc:
    Lakes Region, NH
    I don't have a generator for mine, so I cant recommend one from experience. Been lucky on power outages being short enough to endure, but that will run out eventually. Personally, I would prefer a Honda with inverter (the EU versions) but they are not cheap and I cant afford one at this time, especially since I would want something more than for just the stove.

    The EU2000 would work fine for the stove and maybe a couple of other smaller items.
  7. egrims

    egrims New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2011
    Messages:
    8
    Loc:
    Hopedale, MA
    Yea I'm looking more closely at those now. Of course Honda doesn't let anyone post the prices on-line so you have to talk to someone or get a quote. Seeing what they say now. I like the fact that you can join the EU's together with a parallel cable in case you ever wanted to add some more juice to your setup.

    The generac's look nice for the price but apparently they are made oversea's and some people have given bad reviews, although there are plenty more good reviews then bad...decisions decisions.
  8. roadking88

    roadking88 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2011
    Messages:
    255
    Loc:
    central Maine
    i run a 4000 watt lincoln with mine..because it's a welder it's rated higher than 4k..
    back feed the whole house
    runs water pump boiler tv lights, everything..
    during the summer even had the pool pump and dehumidifier on and didn't realize it..lol
  9. Rokal

    Rokal Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2011
    Messages:
    60
    Loc:
    Long Island, NY
    I have read that a generator should have less than 5% total harmonic distortion (THD) to safely power sensitive electronic equipment. If this is true, you would need to be looking at the Generac "XP" series rather than the "GP" (general purpose) series. The "XP" series is much more expensive.

    Otherwise, the Generac "IX" series (inverter generator) has less than 3% THD. However, there are a lot of negative reviews about this line.

    Hopefully, some Harman owners with tried-and-true experience will chime in.
  10. m159267

    m159267 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2009
    Messages:
    141
    Loc:
    East-Central MO
    Not cheap but I purchased the Honda 2000i specifically for my Harman P-38. We tend to have 1-2 extended power outages per winter. I am in the process of adding a transfer switch by my electrical panel that will make it easy to power not only the Harman but also my refrigerator & upstairs EPA fireplace blower. That will keep the beer cold and the house warm.... :)
  11. ehkewley

    ehkewley New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2011
    Messages:
    42
    Loc:
    Southern NH
    I purchased a cheap cheap cheap 1500 watt generator from Tractor Supply (2nd one left) for $199. It's a Sportsman Portable Generator. It's had a mix of good and bad reviews. It appears to be due to terrible QC on the product line. I get about 10 hours out of 1.5 gallons of gas, and it's powering the P38, the hot water heater (gas), a couple lights, fans ,and laptops. I could run a bit more, but am enjoying the low fuel rate considering the ultra long lines at the gas stations. I drove around southern NH (hollis, merrimack, nashua, amherst, bedford ) but didn't find many that weren't quite busy.

    I'm not sure how many others are running cheap generators. I have the surge protector inline, but the power is anything but clean. The stove objects a bit from time to time, but it's running like a champ.
  12. wilburg

    wilburg Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2010
    Messages:
    163
    Loc:
    Western Mass
    I have no choice, been out of power since Saturday... I'm running the pellet stove on a 15 year old yamaha Genny... Don't know about sin waves... But I do know flame.... And I have been warm... If I fry the board... I'll have to deal with it when it happens.... Since I can be out for three more days I pray that the board holds up...
  13. Fire

    Fire Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2007
    Messages:
    53
    Loc:
    NYC
    Honda EU Series is the best. Inverter with sine wave technology is the safest for the stove. I have an EU2000I, and have used it with my Harman Advance.
  14. lbcynya

    lbcynya Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2006
    Messages:
    466
    Loc:
    W Michigan
    Most cheap generators are only suitable for inductive loads...in other words, light bulbs, small heaters, motors, etc. Running a cheap genny will not cause your electronics to fail right away, it's a bit of a "slow burn"... Bad power over long periods will cause the electronics to fail prematurely. How do you define prematurely? I say, "later and when you least expect it". Then Harman will get a bad rap because the circuit board failed "for no reason". If a cheap genny would blow your electronics immediately, we wouldn't be having this discussion... My 2 cents.

    PS - I sell surge suppressors for industrial applications...for CNC machines with 24 volt electronics...
  15. St_Earl

    St_Earl Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    1,094
    Loc:
    millinocket, north central maine
    i simply can't afford a honda with all the money we are putting into the new house.
    but i would really like your opinion of just the "clean" aspect of these gennys-

    http://www.northerntool.com/shop/tools/product_200419022_200419022 $299 with $79 shipping (amazon) or $84 shipping northern tools (seller is northern tools on amazon too)
    i'm more comfortable with these over the low end generac ix series (not american made like generac's better models)
    as these appear to have much better motors and much better reviews compared to the generac ix series.
    you can get higher wattage units of the same design too.

    quote from the blurb on the powerhorse page-
    "...you can count on it to generate clean electricity with a smoother output to safely run sensitive electronics, producing less than 5% total harmonic distortion at full load"

    is that level of "clean" good enough?

    i haven't yet found (for comparison) the figure on % distortion that the hondas produce.

    *edit. i'm finding more info.
    it looks 5% or less is what is considered safe.
    and one citation saying briggs and stratton give a range of from 3% to 6% thd on their rigs.
    http://www.aboutgenerators.com/harmonic-distortion-for-the-briggs-stratton-pro-series-30338.html

    this briggs and stratton is a bit more expensive. but far less than a honda.
    it's still more than i want to spend now. but looks like a decent alternative to the honda if you want to spend less but still go with a non chinese made unit.
    http://www.amazon.com/Briggs-Stratton-Portable-Inverter-Generator/dp/B0037C18U4
  16. LIpelletpig

    LIpelletpig Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2008
    Messages:
    279
    Loc:
    Long Island, NY
    Honda EU1000
  17. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    28,631
    Loc:
    Northern Virginia
    And how much "dirty power" do you see with line current?
  18. lbcynya

    lbcynya Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2006
    Messages:
    466
    Loc:
    W Michigan
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inverter_(electrical)

    Buy the best generator you can afford and be prepared to accept that electrical issues >>>could<<< pop up over the long run. 6% THD is the highest "accpeptable" limit, so 5% THD is a little better. Invertor generators produce less than 3% THD which is similar to grid power.

    Regardless, invertor generators product 12 volt power and use high qualty electronics to convert the DC to AC. The higher quality the generator the better the electronics resulting in cleaner power. Some generators "fake" it and those are typically 500 bucks or less.

    It's a debate that will rage on. Affordability is a big issue and I understand that. Everyting is a calculated risk. Find out how much a new board is for the stove and weigh the potential costs.

    Weigh the costs and go with your gut...
  19. St_Earl

    St_Earl Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    1,094
    Loc:
    millinocket, north central maine
    at the risk of totally beating a dead horse, do you think a stove like mine, heatilator ps50, with fewer and less sophisticated electronics, would have a little greater tolerance for these small margins difference in thd?
    i know the thread author was referring to his own harman. perhaps this applies on the other side of my question. i.e. sensitivity.
  20. XXV-AK

    XXV-AK Member

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2010
    Messages:
    47
    Loc:
    ANC Alaska
    I have the Honda EU3000i and the APC BACK-UPS XS 1000 which has the AVR and 20-30 back power. Gives me time to hook the genny up and not miss a beat.
  21. lbcynya

    lbcynya Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2006
    Messages:
    466
    Loc:
    W Michigan
    Plenty!!! I'm most cases power fluctuations are a bigger problem. Also, a good amount of noise, 'dirt', etc. comes from within the facility itself.
  22. RKS130

    RKS130 Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    Messages:
    489
    Loc:
    Croton-on-Hudson, NY
    I bought our generator in October 1996 when my wife was VERY pregnant with our twins and we came home from a trip to DC to find no power and a basement full of water, ready to swamp our boiler. This was a Friday night.

    First thing Saturday morning I was first on line at Sears and snagged the last generator they had, to power the sump pump.

    It may not be what I would have picked after careful consideration and shopping, but 15 years later it still works great. I think it is 2400 watts and we made good use of it during hurricane Irene to power fridge, lights, computers and more. I assume, sine waves or not, that it will power my stove as well.

    Bottom line - just get something that works.

    Yes, my dream is a NG powered generator which will take over at the moment of an outage. But then again . . . I have lots of dreams and lots of other things which will likely come first.
  23. bbone

    bbone Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2011
    Messages:
    58
    Loc:
    Buchanan, New York
    Powerhorse from Northern Tool
    very clean power, safe for sensitive electronics, great price
  24. bonesy

    bonesy Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2011
    Messages:
    297
    Loc:
    NE PA
    Last winter when the big ice storm was forecasted for much of NE PA, I went to HD and bought a Rigid electric start 8kw running 10kw peak generator for $1299. It has a Subarau engine. Havn't had to use it yet but it should almost run my entire house minus my geothermal heating and cooling. I will need to use oil filled electric radiators for heat and once I have this Big E installed this week, I can use that in an emergency and blow heat from the garage into the home. I have electric 80gal hot water heater and a well pump. I do not forsee any issues as long as everything doesn't come on at once, which I can control by turning breakers on and off when needed.
  25. Bank

    Bank Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2008
    Messages:
    354
    Loc:
    S. Maine
    First off, I am no engineer or electrician, however, my electrician friends did tell me NOT to use my 8,000 watt generac for my Harman Accentra which I bought from electricgeneratorsdirect, which I might add works very well for the rest of the house. I did buy a 1600 watt B&S inverter for my TV and the Harman. Just my $0.02!

Share This Page