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Is It Safe To Plug My Travel Trailer Into A Cheaper Portable Generator?

by Michael

I bought the 3050 watt 3500 watt maximum generator at Harbor Freight. The instructions say not to use with sensitive electronic equipment. Is it safe to power my travel trailer with this it has a twist lock plug for 25 amp that I have an adapter to plug my 30 amp trailer plug into.

ANSWER: Greetings Michael thanks for submitting your question on our Ask An RV Question Page.

Since you don't tell me the brand of the generator you bought at Harbor Freight I am going to have to assume that it is a Chicago Brand Contractor Grade Generator, although I could not find a Chicago Generator that meets the wattage specs that you provided.

So to be on the safe side I suggest very strongly that you look at the owner's Manual that came with the generator to make sure that the twist plug you are planning to plug your Travel Trailer into is not a 220 Volt Welder Plug. If you plug your travel trailer into a 220 volt plug bad things will happen.

OK to answer your original question, if it is not a 220 volt plug you will probably get away with plugging your Travel Trailer into it. The reason for the warning on the generator is to basically let you know if you fry your TV, AC unit or any other appliance in your RV they will not be responsible for the damage.

Since I am assuming that the generator you purchased is a Contractor Grade Generator, there are few other downsides you need to be aware of when using it with your Travel Trailer.

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1. Noise, normally Contractor Grade Generators run at higher RPMs then a portable generator designed for camping use. The mufflers on Contractor Grade Generators generally do not do a good job at reducing noise. Some campgrounds have a limit on how many decibels can be generated by a running generator.

2. No Spark Arrestor; some rural campgrounds require that generators used in their areas must be equipped with spark arrestors, most Contractor Grade Generators are not equipped with Spark Arrestors.

3. Camping type generators are designed for continuous use. Some Contractor Type Generators have time limits for the number of hours they can be used continuously. Check the specs in your owner's manual for these limits.

I hope that this information was helpful to you.

Do you have any suggestions or comments on this topic? You can add them to this page by clicking on the "Click Here To Post Comments" link located near the bottom of this page.

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Happy RVing

RVing Al

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by: Michael

Thank you, for answering my question.
The generator is the Chicago Brand Model number 67561 and the twist lock plus is only 120 V outlet. I did not know about the need for spark arrestor but will get one. I have run it with a few power tools already and it is quiter then my gas mower and I only wanted to use during day when dry camping to keep batteries charged and run ac if gets too hot out.

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