View Full Version : Generator Question
04-07-2008, 02:41 AM
All yea with wisdom. I humbly call on you to seek greater knowledge. The question; I have a Great West Van, Can I run my "on board" generator....while enroute?
04-07-2008, 08:05 AM
Yes, that way you can run the ac and keep really cool, etc. zz
04-07-2008, 02:05 PM
What's the fuel type?
04-07-2008, 06:07 PM
04-07-2008, 06:16 PM
Two potential issues...
DOT's require that the valve be locked while in motion, so you may be cited.
And, if your GenSet cannot handle 'liquid' vapour, as oppsoed to 'gaseous', than you will experience issues when the tanks are sloshing and liquid travels the lines and gets into the genset carb. Most Onan's can deal with/process 'liquid' propane....
04-07-2008, 07:39 PM
Huh? Dot has no reg for that except for tunnels. I might be wrong? zz
04-07-2008, 08:12 PM
You didn't know you're required to go outside and manually shut closed the propane valve before putting your vehicle in drive?
04-07-2008, 08:41 PM
Well, that's a new one. We run our refrigerator on LP sometimes when driving and we have run our generator while driving. A quick search of California Vehicle Code shows no such requirement.
04-08-2008, 02:28 AM
IF? that's the law I guess a lot of people are breaking the law. How come when I pull into a propane station they ask me to shut off propane if is suppose to be off anyway? Mine works great while underway.
04-08-2008, 02:36 PM
Looks like there's no more room on the bandwagon.
I guess I confused the "Law" or made assumptions from my readings and practices.
My last 2 RV manuals had clear and bold 'guidelines' about shutting the propane valve before engaging into drive. I know and respect the issues around the practice. Most pertaining to safety.
Hey Bill, you reinforce my long standing practice of never pulling up next to an RV at a fuel filling station. Did it ever occur to you that your refer flame or spark can ignite the fuel fumes around a pump? Your refer is on the pump side isn't it? Yes, that's what all those warning signs are for...
04-09-2008, 11:39 AM
Yes, LP should be turned off during refueling at gas stations, but it is okay to use LP while traveling on the road> Turned off so no pilot lights are lit at gas stations. zz
04-09-2008, 06:42 PM
I guess I just live on the edge. I run my genset while driving, usually to use the microwave. I never turn my propane off accept when refilling.
04-09-2008, 08:04 PM
On my travel trailer I always had my propane refrigerator on when driving, how else do you keep your food cold?
04-11-2008, 12:47 PM
The rule to which Orion is referring is in regards to travel trailers and older RVs which had portable, D.O.T. regulated propane cylinders mounted externally, or, in the case of my old '72 Winnebago, in a compartment accessed from the outside. There were so many tunnels, etc., that prohibited open propane cylinders that it was just easier to keep them off when traveling. Many tunnels prohibited propane tanks of any sort, whether off or on. I suppose some still do, but I have never run into them in my travels.
The type of tank used on Sprinter RVs (and all other motor homes, today) is an SAE permanently mounted tank that does not fall under the DOT cylinder rules. It is perfectly OK to leave the valve on when traveling. My own has only been shut off during refills over the past 2+ years, whether parked or driven.
The biggest problem with running the generator while you are traveling down the road is the lack of capacity in the normal Sprinter system. Most conversions are 39 pounds (like my LTV) or less. Sportsmobile and other custom jobs may be able to cram in a slightly larger tank depending on the customer options. That's the equivalent of 2 - 20 pound grill cylinders, or about 9 gallons, and doesn't last very long when using the generator. I've never timed it myself, but I recall a report from someone racing to get away from Katrina in their Sprinter who used up all their propane in less than 24 hours of generator use. If you also use your water heater, stove, furnace and refrigerator on LP gas, it will be gone PDQ.
While LP gas is stored in a liquid form inside your tank, there is no problem with liquid sloshing in my experience. The feed is from the top of your tank, where the lack of pressure allows the vapor to exit (it's looking for a way to escape). The liquid would slosh right past the exit feed (it's looking for a way to settle back to the bottom), and would not get through the regulator even if it did manage to exit the tank.
Before I let it expire when I retired, I was the holder of a Florida 601 LP Gas license (the highest license they grant) and owned and operated a propane dispensing operation.
04-16-2008, 01:10 AM
Geeze, I hate it when that happens.......you've got a perfectly good topic going and then someone like Don steps in, that actually knows what he's talking about! Thanks Don!
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