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Old 07-01-2013, 15:24   #1
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Safety Issues running generator at night?

What does experience teach about running the generator through the night when on anchor to preserve systems that the inverter cannot handle?

Ultimately I'm curious as to whether or not serious cruisers choose to run their generators at night? If so, are there any health/safety concerns that you pay particular attention to aside from possible fume backdraft?
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Old 07-01-2013, 15:40   #2
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

Safety issues, common sense and fuel costs all make it a bad idea. If your boat can't sit all night without a generator running you need to be plugged into a marina or rethink your power needs. Chuck
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Old 07-01-2013, 15:52   #3
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

A lot of us anchor out partly in order to enjoy the peace and quiet and the noise and fumes of a generator are definitely negatives to those around you, even if they don't bother you.
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Old 07-01-2013, 15:54   #4
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

Theres also consideration to others in the anchorage.
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Old 07-01-2013, 15:55   #5
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

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Originally Posted by JGSelene View Post

Ultimately I'm curious as to whether or not serious cruisers choose to run their generators at night?
Never.
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Old 07-01-2013, 16:18   #6
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

I agree with all the above and use solar for most of my needs. A quality solar set up cost way more than a EU2000i though. But if we get back to reality, everybody, everywhere has a genny. Mainly the honda eu2000i, they are everywhere, people run them constantly. Its now the norm and its not going to change, most bent people probably have a 8hp briggs & stratton cheapy running right next to their boat. people with cheapys dont have any batteries and run'em from the time they get back to the boat till bed. DONT DO THIS.
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Old 07-01-2013, 16:22   #7
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

I don't think it's the norm at all to run a generator when at anchor, even in the Keys. In any case, in addition to solar and wind power, it is well worth it to look into energy conservation using LED lights and such. The biggest power draw on most cruising boats is the fridge, and that can be reduced by 50% with some better insulation and a more efficient set up.
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Old 07-01-2013, 16:33   #8
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, JGSelene.
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Old 07-01-2013, 16:58   #9
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

Exactly what systems do you need to keep on through the night that your battery bank can't handle til dawn?
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Old 07-01-2013, 16:58   #10
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

We run a Panda 4.2KW that uses about 1/10th gallon per hour when powering our Air Conditioning. At night, in some anchorages, there isn't enough wind to flicker a candle so we'll leave it running to keep the boat cool and batteries topped up. Our generator cannot be heard, inside the yacht, over the whoosh of the AC fan nor on deck more than 10 feet from the cockpit and even there it's only a gentle purr. We have Carbon Monoxide detectors in all of the cabins so that's not a worry either. Considering that on construction sites we commonly have generators running 24/7 for months at a time, 10 to 12 hours is really not a big deal.

FWIW...
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Old 07-01-2013, 17:09   #11
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

Properly installed not a safety issue, but certainly not common for cruising boats to run their gensets all night (if they even have a genset). Unless you are going to run a heavy load all night like air con then there is no reason to.

I do run charters on some boats which are fully air conditioned. Given that the guests often specifically booked the boat because it was AC'ed then yup we may run the genset all night.
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Old 07-01-2013, 17:26   #12
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

If theres no breeze, or to many bugs, we use AC so we run the genny which is diesel and is in a sound box in the engine room which also is insulated for noise and heat! If you are with in 20 ft of our stern you might hear a slite whisper of exaust. We have never had a complaint of noise from our genny. We spend way more then 80% of our time at anchorages, sometimes even on a mooring for a day or two. But very seldom do we use a marina!! Mostly we use a marina when we ck into or out of a country. So we use our genny a lot, and no noise is a big thing for us ! we don't like noise when we try to sleep either! so we have went out of our way to reduce any sound comming from both our genny and our main engine!! If the weather is pleasent we don't use it !! Just our 2 cents
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Old 07-01-2013, 17:32   #13
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JGSelene View Post
What does experience teach about running the generator through the night when on anchor to preserve systems that the inverter cannot handle?
Experience teaches that any boat that runs its generator all night will be reviled, scorned and ridiculed by fellow cruisers. If there are 10 boats in an anchorage and only one of them feels the need to run a generator all night, it's worth asking why the one boat feels entitled to subject the other nine boats to its noise and stink.

If you feel the need to run air conditioning all night, it's probably a good idea to stay in a slip where you can plug into shore power. Same goes for that big-screen TV.
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Old 07-01-2013, 17:33   #14
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

I don't have a generator but in my semi-limited experience; people run them at night!
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Old 07-01-2013, 17:49   #15
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Re: Safety Issues running generator at night?

[QUOTE=Don Lucas;1124296]I don't have a generator but in my semi-limited experience; people run them at night![/QUOTE

Exactly. When necessary and perhaps not all night. Why else install one.
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