The Adventures of Airstream Mikie

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Caveat Emptor

The current (if you will excuse the pun) situation with the new generator not being able to run the Airstream air conditioner:

The Airstream local dealer service department got through to Carrier (the manufacturer of the AC unit) and they say that the unit will require 28 to 29 amps on startup although only 12.8 after startup.

So, 29 amps, multiplied by 115 volts, equals 3335 watts of power needed to start that sucker (only 1472 to keep it running).   The generator that was recommended to me by the local Airstream sales rep is the Yamaha EF2400IS (the one I bought).

The Yamaha web page for this unit says it has "the highest output in its class -- enough to power up most 13,500 BTU RV air conditioners".  The specs page shows that it produces 2400 watts max, 2000 watts rated.  But the Airstream AC unit needs 3335 watts.  Big difference!

The generator I need will cost twice as much as the one recommended, in addition to about $500 in return shipping and restocking fees to return the one that doesn't work.

The bottom line:  "Caveat Emptor"  Let the buyer beware!  And, of course, the real bottom line is that I did not do my homework and check every detail.  Instead I relied on the recommendation of the Airstream sales rep, who, as it turns out, made the recommendation based on no personal experience whatsoever, just the recommendation of his local Yamaha generator dealer, who, it seems perfectly clear now, had no idea what he was talking about.

I guess you could call this an expensive learning experience.

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