Camping is meant to be easygoing, but having a separate generator causes a lot of stress for a vacation to be successful. Growing up in Idaho, my family and I have always driven a camper on our family vacations.
So, do some campers have built-in generators to avoid the awful back pain of carrying around a full-sized metallic generator? Most fifth-wheeler Campers house a built-in generator for the convenience of their customers. On top of that, nearly all new motorhomes come stocked with a generator built in straight from the factory, providing the safest route for luxurious adventurous living. Many other types of campers, such as hybrid trailers, and travel trailers are hit or miss.
But wait! Before you buy, get all the information possible about your RV and generator to ensure that your family fun goes uninterrupted by unexpected problems with your RV. Check the following parameters to make sure that your RV generator fits the bill. Otherwise, you will likely feel gipped out of your money.
RVs With Built-In Generators
In your search for the most convenient RV that provides a built-in, reliable generator, one must consider the many makes and models of the RV world. Generally, motorhomes are your best bet at having the most convenient camping experience and are always carrying a generator.
Plus, with this particular type of RV, the whole family can enjoy the ride to
Whether you are interested in super class C Motorhomes, or class B+, or even small motorhomes, these RVs are a safe choice. Other RVs that often include built-in generators are Truck Campers, toy haulers, and fifth-wheels.
Depending on how recent these RVs were made, you can be sure they have a built-in generator for your convenience. Make sure with your local RV dealer that your specific model has one installed before buying. There are many brands and makes of RV’s out there, and not all of them include a built-in generator.
However, be not dismayed, here is a list of a few fantastic choices that do.
- Wolf Creek 850 by Northwood Mfg; uses a 2.5 KW Onan generator. Starting price
- 2018 Forest River Xlr Boost 37TSX13; uses a 5.5 KW Onan Generator. Starting price: $64,862 here
- 2019 FOREST RIVER SUNSEEKER 3050S; uses a 4.0 KW Onan Microquiet generator. Starting price: $103,215 here
- 2018 Forest River Xlr Thunderbolt 413AMP; Uses a 5.5 KW Onan CARB EVAP Generator. Starting price:$112,054 here
Another great question on the mind of many happy campers like you in pursuit of a stellar camper with a built-in generator would be how would we know whether or not this particular generator can take care of all my electronic needs while at camp or on the road?
The answer is simple, take a look around the cabin and add up the necessary wattage to power your many appliances and then compare it to the general output level of the generator. The wattage output is displayed on the generator itself and on the box for many occasions.
Make sure that the wattage output is higher than the needed outage to fit your needs to give yourself some room to add another appliance or two to your list.
For example, when looking into the amount of wattage necessary to power your appliances, and overall your RV requires around 3.5 KW of power, it would be a very wise choice to purchase one that produces 4 KW.
Don’t be frugal when buying a quality generator. A good generator truly pays for itself. You can power phone chargers, blenders, ovens and pretty much anything that plugs into a wall outlet.
More often than not, many buyers choose to buy a generator that doesn’t fit the amount of wattage output necessary to fully power all their household appliances and A/C, leaving them without the comforts of their home away from home.
What About Fuel?
How will you know what the right RV generator is for you? There are more generators to choose from that none can count. Thought all generators perform the same purpose, charging your batteries, powering appliances, etc. not all generator are created equally. It’s time to talk about fuel purposes.
The obvious choice for buying a generator that comes built-in to the RV is the safest. Propane generators provide the most benefits and are reliable beyond measure. This Eco-friendly alternative, unlike gasoline and diesel, is meant to last longer on the shelves; making storage a breeze.
You will practically never have to worry about your propane going bad when not in use. Gasoline has been known to last 6 months in storage, while diesel lasts anywhere from 10-12 months on the shelf, without use. Propane, on the other hand, is meant to last indefinitely.
If you plan on leaving your RV at the camping grounds year-round, propane would be the smart choice for your RV. Plus, propane generators are known to be quieter, making your family vacation your time to sit in the peace and quiet.
However, if you are looking for a fuel that packs a punch and can satisfy all your power needs gasoline and diesel generators are going to be your best bet. Diesel and gasoline generators tend to be much louder. Between the two, gasoline tends to be more economical for the buyer; with gasoline being completely accessible on practically every block in the U.S.A.
If you are looking for a generator with the highest wattage output, look into an RV with a diesel generator. These beasts are meant to pack the biggest punch where needed.
Often larger than other generators, diesel generators weigh quite a bit so pay attention to the amount of weight your RV is built to carry. Though often heavier, more expensive, and louder, they will deliver where needed and then some.
Here are the top choices for the three fuel categories:
- Cummins Onan QD 6.0 Diesel RV Generator 6.0HDKAH-1044
- Price: $8,100-$9,200
- Cummins Onan RV QG 4000-Watt Generator Gasoline RV 4KYFA26100
- Price: $2990-$3,990
- Cummins Onan RV QG5500 5,500 W Propane Powered RV Generator
Are generators dangerous? Generator utilizes flammable fuel to generate electricity and are dangerous. Like all mechanical instruments that require gasoline, diesel or propane, generators are a fire hazard if used improperly or installed without professional help. There are many ways to prevent starting fires with your RV generator.
Remember to always leave your RV and fuel cans at least 20 yards (60 feet) away from campfires to prevent combustion. Make sure your carbon monoxide and fire alarms are always functional to prevent fires early on. Make certain that no flammable materials are left around or on top of the generator.
Also, due to the electrical output being a potential electrical hazard, avoid sticking fingers, rags or metallic objects into electrical sockets. Be smart, and always play it safe.
Should I buy a backup generator for my RV? A backup generator is not needed for your RV. The reason for this is built-in generators are built to last and reliable as long as proper maintenance is performed semiannually. However, I would recommend bringing fuel to spare just in case you get into a bind.
When in doubt, branch out to local RV dealers for more insight on your local campgrounds recommendations. Depending on where you live, you may need to pack quite a bit of extra fuel to get you home.
Can I run a generator while on the road? Most generators can be used while on the road driving. It would be wise to check the owners manual before using your RV to specify what appliances can and cannot be used while on the open road. The most common appliances available while en route to your destination are televisions, indoor lights, air conditioning, etc. depending on your RV.
If you own a traveling trailer or a toy hauler it is strongly advised against that you ride in the trailer itself while in motion, due to the manner in which trailers are designed to hook up to your truck. However, if you own a fifth-wheel