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Hello Everyone,

I'm about to purchase my first generator. I really need it to run the sump pumps and well pump in my home during power outages. I was all set to buy the Honda EM6500. My local dealer had a fair price, and they seemed like good, knowledgable guys that I could use to service the generator in the future. However, before making my purchase I wanted to make sure I shouldn't be looking at an inverter instead? Should I be worrying about damaging my sump pumps/well pump with a conventional generator? My worst nightmare is to burn out a sump pump during a bad storm.

If anyone has any feedback, I'd be greatly appreciative!

Thank,
Ryan
 

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Hi,

I have a pretty cheap 3500W generator. It has been powering my fridges, furnace (oil and water pumps) and electronics through 3 long outages and some shorter ones. Still running outside as I type this. I have UPS's on various stations where I power my DirecTV units, computers, network gear etc. Stuff I don't want to power cycle unnecessarily. Sometimes the generator struggles a bit when for example the heat kicks in and then the UPSs keep things going. Laptops have a built in UPS which is of course really nice in these situations.

I intend to buy a better generator that produces smoother power but it's more for convenience and quality than for 'need'. I don't have a sump pump nor a well pump but these are pretty beefy yet primitive devices. I can't see how these would be damaged by a few weeks of sub-optimal power when their life span is measured in years if not decades.

If you have the money I'd go with an inverter generator because it's generally 'nicer'. They do things like idle down under low load and have other luxury features. It seems that Honda you are looking at should be an excellent (and pricey) generator that will serve you well. Compare the cost difference with a Honda inverter generator and see how that makes you feel. The price difference between a Chinese made generator like mine and a quality inverter generator is between 5 and 10x. Substantial.

Good luck,

Sander
 

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Hello,I am reading in great interest your comments.I have a sump pump and well pump plus a fridge/freezer combo and another freezer in garage.I want to get a new inverter generator or regular portable generator-one that I can sit in large ventilated shed or roof ventilated garage to keep out of weather-IF SAFE TO DO SO.The question is how long of extension cord and gauge is correct.Also ,the well pump is wired right into main switch box.Thanks for your help!!!
 

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The Honda EM series generators are great choices for home standby. They produce a good clean electric signal, and are just fine for 99.9% of all household loads, including sump pumps. No worries at all.

That said, the Honda EU series models are nicer; the inverter technology means an even cleaner signal, which can sometimes be better for very sensitive electronic devices. If you were needing backup power for a few racks of computer servers, an EU model is a fine choice. They also run quieter, burn less fuel, but cost considerably more expensive.

FYI, many sump pumps require 240 volt service. All Honda EM models have this, but only the large EU6500is in the EU-series has it. Double-check to see what the load/voltage requirements are for your sump pump before you buy. Generally, it's best to buy a bit larger than you need to have a bit of extra cushion. Don't make the mistake of buying a too-small generator. Chances are you'll want to power more things in the future.

Lots of great facts/info on Honda's website here:
Honda Generators: Portable Generator Power for Home, Work, and Play
 

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I have a EU6500is and (2) EU2000is which I can run in parallel.

I bought the honda, because after much research, I thought they were the best on the market. I change the oils at least once a year and start and run them under a load every 6 weeks or so.

I bought the inverter type because I wanted to be able to run a tv, computer, refrig, etc. The inverter gives steady clean power where the straight Gen could give spikes that might hurt these sensitive items. If you are just going to run a sump pump you probably don't need the honda EU type.

A inverter type Gen will definately cost more to buy, as I am sure you have seen, but if you take care of it the Gen will last much longer. Just my opinion.
 

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I bought the inverter type because I wanted to be able to run a tv, computer, refrig, etc. The inverter gives steady clean power where the straight Gen could give spikes that might hurt these sensitive items.
This is mostly marketing hype. For example, check out the specs on MANY computer power supplies. A typical one:

Input voltage 100-240 vac
Frequency: 47 to 63 hz

Switching power supplies are very tolerable of over/under voltages and frequency. Most motors aren't that fussy. There are "better" conventional generators that do produce clean(er) power if you are concerned - such as the one you're looking at.

The EM6500 is equipped with an "intelligent" voltage regulator, many cheaper models are not. You shouldn't have any issues with the well pump starting if you've sized the unit correctly.

Inverter generators are great too but there is a lot more to go wrong.
 

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You were asking about inverters...if there's a generator that doesn't have the inverter feature to it, wouldn't that damage computers if you also hooked it up to things like your a/c or refrigerator that produces surges?
 

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The problem with a load, such as a motor, is that the starting current is many times higher than what the running current is.

Your 600 watt refrigerator can easily take 2-3000 watts to start. ANY generator is going to have the voltage drop a bit. Even the inverters take time to compensate. The noninverters get through this period due to the mass of the rotor (flywheel effect).

Do you ever see the lights in your house dim for a second when some heavy loads start? Same idea, but think of the capacity of your municipal power plant.

Switching power supplies, as in computers, are very tolerant of voltage/frequency changes.

Most conventional generators do have voltage regulators to prevent surges.
 

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I bought a inverter generator because I heard they were safer to use on circuit boards such as TVs, computers, pellet stoves. So far so good and I do feel a little safer with it than with a regular generator.
 

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You can't go wrong with an inverter generator. The fuel saving alone is worth it. During Sandy gas was rationed. I was very happy running My EU6500 inverter that ran twice as long as my Generac generator on a gallon of gas. The low RPM of inverter generators also means far less noise, and less wear and tear.
 

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The more I've talked to people about inverter generators, the more I hear dealers talking about how the customers like the fuel efficiency and money saved on fuel, especially w/ how expensive gas is & will be.
 

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I'm definitely an inverter fan; however, depending upon the model, if it's for emergencies, it will take a lot of them to recoup the price difference between a conventional and an inverter.

In my case, I purchased a Honda EU6500IS; however, I could have bought Honda's EM6500S for $1,100 less. Let's just say that gas is $5 per gallon. If the inverter type is twice as efficient (which isn't even close to realistic), I'd have to burn through 440 gallons to break even.

So, why did I spend the extra money? I personally felt that the sound level difference and peace of mind of the clean electricity was worth it for me. I figured, "Well, I'm nearly $3000 in for a quality Honda, so why not add an extra 33% to get the best consumer 6500 watt one with these bonus features."

But, because that was the right decision for me, doesn't mean it is the right decision for others.

The bottom line is if fuel efficiency is the only determining factor, in MOST cases, I don't feel it could be justified if it's for emergency use only.
 
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