Genny and Laptop

Discussion in 'The Beginner' started by Douzeper, Aug 17, 2011.

  1. Douzeper

    Douzeper Funster

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    Getting my MH this week, was wondering...

    If I have a Genny running instead of EHU and plug in a Laptop to charge will it damage the charger or laptop? and the same question for Wifey's hair straighteners :)
     
  2. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    If the genny has inverter technology no problem..

    cheapo genny you risk damaging sensitive electronics.. so I wouldn't risk a laptop .. hair straighteners should ok if no electronic heat control
     
  3. Douzeper

    Douzeper Funster

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    Doubt it has an inverter, it's a "WOLF" bought quite some time ago, two stroke.

    Can I buy and attach an inverter?
     
  4. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    no, an inverter converts 12v dc to 230v ac ...

    inverter technology generators work the other way round.. ie generate 12v dc and convert to 230v ac

    a 2 stroke is noisy and smelly, look around for a second hand 4 stoke with inverter technology ..
     
  5. JJ

    JJ Funster

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    For charging my laptop in the Wagon I use a DC converter (12volt to 16 volt) I bought from Maplins.

    If necessary (not often because of solar panels) I can use my genny to charge the Wagon batteries.

    In this way I don't have to charge the laptop directly from the genny. (I could without a problem though 'cos mine is a Kipor...:Wink:)

    JJ :Cool:
     
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  6. Douzeper

    Douzeper Funster

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    Ok so now I'm thinking... will a Genny without an inverter damage the on board battery charger?

    If not, then can I use an inverter plugged onto the battery and then to the laptop?

    I assume (don't know these things) the on board battery charger is 240v?

    Which gets me to another question, why buy a 12v genny? or is that wired direct to the battery just to charge it, bypassing the 240v?

    Am I making sense ? :BigGrin:
     
  7. Douzeper

    Douzeper Funster

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    Does this just plug into a cigarette lighter?
     
  8. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    Some will say they have used cheap gennies with on board chargers with no problems, I certainly wouldn't risk it. On board chargers are just as sensitive to spikes as any other electronic kit .. and expensive to replace.

    A 12 v genny is used to charge the batteries.. (as per discussion on Chris's thread)..
    that is another approach.. charge the batteries then run 230v kit from an on board inverter ..

    however, a 2kw inverter isn't a cheap item, especially if you buy a pure sine wave model. ..
     
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  9. gozomike

    gozomike Funster Life Member Life Member

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    Hi

    As JJ I use one of the 12volt laptop power supplies from Maplin. They do plug into a cigarette lighter socket, in my case it is set to 19volts out as required by my laptop. If you get one check it can supply the correct voltage and enough power for the laptop. Using one of these is much more efficient and flexible than using a 240 volt inverter and then using the standard laptop PSU.


    As mentioned if you do need a 240 volt genny one with an inverter is the way to go. If you buy one which generates 240 volts directly it will have to run at 3,000 RPM to give the correct 50 Hz supply. This is not very efficient or reliable. One which generates 12 volts and has a built in inverter can run slower when less power is required as the inverter electronically controls the output supply.

    I hope this helps.

    Mike
     
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  10. Douzeper

    Douzeper Funster

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    Ahh very helpful. I know what I need now. Thanks everyone.
     
  11. Bryan

    Bryan Read Only Funster

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    I have used a red kipor 3kw generator to supply power to my current and last two RV's.

    I have used two laptop chargers, hdd recorders, and other sensitive electronic devices on this power.

    The above setup is often frowned upon.

    I have suffered no device failure etc. and I think the risk (if there is one) is overstated.

    That is my opinion, ymmv

    Bryan :Smile:
     
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  12. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    There is a risk Bryan, a substantial risk if it is a cheapo without AVR (automatic voltage regulation)

    I don't know much about Red Kipors , I know they are not inverter type.. but do they have AVR which should give a constant voltage and less risk of damaging electronics..
     
  13. JJ

    JJ Funster

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    You've got it ! :thumb:

    I live in my van so try to use 12 volt stuff as much as possible...

    JJ :Cool:
     
  14. Bryan

    Bryan Read Only Funster

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    I don't know if they have AVR. All I know is that loads of people have changed/are changing from red kipors to yellow ones because of the alleged risk of damaging sensitive electronics.

    My experiences make me believe that the risks are at best overstated.
     
  15. aba

    aba

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    i do think that there is a risk of damage to sensitive electronics but the power stations don't use inverters they just generate a high voltage then reduce it via transformers.
    if you have doubts get one of those surge protectors that that plugs in to a mains socket and run the sensitive stuff through that.

    although most electronics nowadays have built in tolerances to small surges and voltage changes

    get a good volt meter and check the voltages in your house over a period of time you may be surprised just what readings you get.
     
  16. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    Power stations generators have sophisticated and very accurate governors on their steam and gas turbines keeping the speed constant at 3000 rpm to give a frequency of 50hz irrespective of load.. the voltage is stepped up for transmission then stepped down at the local sub station .. no way can this level of control be compared to a cheap portable genny with no AVR

    As said most kit can tolerate small voltage fluctuations.. but if a cheap genny goes wild we are not talking about a small voltage change.. the spike could easily blow anything connected to it. ..

    The way I look at it is this.. I know there is a risk, albeit small, so I look at the potential cost of replacing damaged kit against the cost of a good quality inverter genny .. take the risk and cry if it goes wrong or spend a few hundred pounds to insure against it.. it's your money and your risk....
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2011
  17. Heyupluv

    Heyupluv Read Only Funster

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    Jim..... I must agree with you on this, as I used two type of genies (None sine wave) when I was in the building game...one a 2.5 kw 4 stroke, and 1 a 850 w two stroke....in my haste to get on with the work I damaged two of my electric building tools through not waiting for the generators warm up... run for a while to settle into a even rpm ....... so now I have a 2kw kipor and a 10i Honda both pure sine wave and BOTH are great generators.... you may get away with it you may not but is worth the worry...when you could pick up a brand new Kipor 750w or a 1kw Kipor or other brands pure sine wave inverters for around £200 :Doh: all modern inverter sine wave generators are fine....

    Mel:thumb:
     
  18. Hayleylulu

    Hayleylulu

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    OR you can get knock of one cheaper:Wink::Wink:
     
  19. Heyupluv

    Heyupluv Read Only Funster

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    Martin:Wink::Wink::Wink::Wink::Wink::BigGrin::Rofl1::Rofl1::Rofl1:
     
  20. Douzeper

    Douzeper Funster

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    Got a link ? :)
     
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