Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: Lowell area, MA
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That sure doesn't sound right, but I don't have any idea of what you could do about it. If you're within a return period, I'd take it back to the store, or contact the manufacturer if it's under warranty. I get the impression that inverter units (boards) themselves are typically just replaced if something goes wrong, and that trying to repair them may be difficult.
A long shot, but: if your load had a really bad/low Power Factor (0.5), you could be putting out 800W, but the actual load on the generator would be 1600VA. And they are really rated in VA, not Watts.
On the Kill-A-Watt, run your load again, and change to the VA display, see what that's showing before it cuts out. That's what the generator cares about, not Watts. For an electric heater, hair dryer, etc, Power Factor=1.0, so VA=Watts. But other loads will have a PF<1, so VA>Watts.