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A-iPower 2000-Watt Inverter Generator with Parallel Kit Review

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Review of the A-iPower 2000-Watt Inverter Generator with Parallel Kit


Randy: Hey, guys, Randy here at etrailer.com. We spent the last little bit doing some pretty thorough testing on the A-iPower 2000 starting watt, 1600 watt inverter style generator, but we wanted to go over some of what we found just to give you an idea of what these generators are designed to do and where they're going to work best for you. Now, what we've done is basically connected our generator to this RV, and we've put it through a litany of tests. We've tried to run the air conditioners, the microwaves, coffee pots, blow dryers. Those tend to have the highest draw, but also cellphone chargers, refrigerators, TVs and things like that, and running them all in conjunction, and basically what we have found is that for all of your appliances, let's say a blow dryer, or your microwave, or your coffee pot, it's a great generator to have.If you try to start a 15,000 BTU air conditioner with it, just going to overload it. It's not meant to handle that kind of load, even on the 13,500 BTU air conditioner, we tested the single on that, it's a no-go.

Basically, where I would put this at would be in a very small camper. If your AC unit, let's say is about 9,500 BTUs or less, it's probably going to start it for you. That's probably going to be the only thing you're going to be able to run without overloading it, but it will start it.If you want to get into larger items, so that single, small RVs, small cabins, tailgating situations, camping situations, or even just getting it out to a job site, where you have some power for those small power tools, it's going to be an excellent choice. The option we have available for you guys that need a little bit more power than that, let's say you've got a 13,500 BTU air conditioner, maybe a 15, this is a 15,000. We're running that right now off of our parallel 2000 kit, and it's given us great results.

Now, we can run this air conditioner, and we can run our microwave at the same time without any issue. We can run this air conditioner, again, 15,000 BTU with our coffee pot with no issue. We can run that air conditioner with a blow dryer.Really again, no issues, and those two things running at the same time. You could have the TV on at that same point, and it's not really going to give you any problems. Where we've run into issues with overloading the parallel kit is if we had the air conditioner on, coffee pot on, and we kick on the blow dryer.

That tends to overload the system, and it causes us issues. Another really common question is, "Why can't I just go buy an old style generator and hook it up to my camper"Really, you can if you want. There's a couple of negatives to that though. One, they're extremely loud. With an inverter type generator, your motor is typically encased all the way around.

Just the exhaust comes out of the back.It keeps it really quite, it keeps it really smooth, and it doesn't really annoy the neighbors. I've been to a few campsites before we're out in the generator area, and you can use any kind of generator you want, but the one guy that has the 9,000 watt job site generator that's a gigantor, it's a little frustrating for the rest of the campers. Generally, going out camping, being respectful to your fellow campers is important, and using an inverters type generator will make sure they come over and want to hang out basically. Also, an inverter type generator, it's going to give you cleaner and more pure power. Those older type generators, or the cage style generators like we're talking about, while they can be less expensive, they don't give you clean power.They're more volatile. They'll surge up and down. You might be looking for 120 volts out of one, and you're getting anywhere from 100 to 150 with those surges that go up and down. For a coffee pot or for a microwave, or even our air conditioner, it doesn't care that much, but when we start putting laptops on charge, start putting our cellphones, our tablets, something like that on charge, or even some TVs and stuff, you don't really want those surges getting through there. You don't want them getting to those electronics and causing harm.They're quieter, generally much lighter, and we get pure power. Those are the three main reasons why you want an inverter type over the standard type. Now, another common question I get when working with customers is, "How loud is the generator" Basically, it's a little louder than what I've seen out of the etrailer 2000 watt generator. Slightly louder than what you're going to get out of the Honda 2000 watt generator, but with it being at such a good value, I think it is a nice generator and it's good to use.Generally, if you're using a camper, you're going to be in the generator area, and we already know the inverter style generator is going to be much quieter than the older style generator. Standing right in here, just with the AC running, it's pretty much drowned out that generator noise. If we had the TV kicked on at this point, we wouldn't even hear it. Now, we've got the generators about three foot outside of the back corner of the RV here. I'll walk back there.You can hear it probably a little bit if I'll be quiet long enough. Okay, I hear that little bit of generator noise. Again, keep in mind, that's from where I am standing, about five feet away. Generally, with a camper set up, you're going to have a 20, 25, or 30-foot power cord, so you're going to get those further away, and I think if you did that, you're really not going to have any noise issues to deal with. If you're out boondocking, and nobody else around, it doesn't matter how loud they are, but I think with the inverter type and them being right there in line with the other generators in this wattage range, I wouldn't make it a buying decision.I wouldn't pick up a different generator just because it's this much quieter than what the A-iPower is. Now, the second question about noise we get, of course, is when you're outside of your RV, "How much is that going to disrupt you when you're out hanging out" I'm going to fire up the first one. Basically, two of them aren't that much louder than when you're running them in parallel. It's just a little bit fuller sound, which I think you'll hear, so we'll start by firing up the first one, and I'm going to fire up the second one.Once we've done that, we'll get our load set, and I'll meet you around on the other side of the camper so we can hear it at about 10 feet away. We'll go up to about 25 feet, at about 35 feet, so you can kind of get an idea of what to expect and how much noise that you're actually going to hear when you're sitting out around the fire, sitting out underneath your awning and enjoying your time. You can see, there's not a huge difference between one or two. It's just a little bit fuller noise. It just doesn't get all that much louder.Now, I'll meet you around there in a second after we have our load on, and then we'll touch base on it there and see the differences if we move further away. Now, here, you can see, guys, we're really not that far away from those generators, and most camping situations, those are probably already going to be about 35 feet away. At this point, we can talk pretty normally and not really hear a whole lot from them. Let's move just a little bit further and see what we get there. That might be a surprise to you, but the further we get away from them, the quieter they're going to be.You can still hear them in the background there a little bit. As we move further away, certainly they're going to get quieter, but I really think the benefit that you're going to get out of it, having that RV cool from the air conditioner and all the creature comforts that you get inside, you're going to forget about that motor noise pretty quickly. Now, with each generator, we've got a nice variety of things that are going to come with it. We've got our maintenance kit here. This is going to have a spark plug wrench, a screwdriver in it, the things we're going to need to service the generator.We're going to have a set of alligator clips, and this can plug right into that 12 volt outlet that we talked about. This can be used to charge a battery. Keep in mind, this is not a smart charger. This isn't going to charge your battery up until it gets up to 100%, and then shut down. It's an 8 amp charger, which is 1 amp over what you generally see out of a battery charger.It's going to give us a pretty fast charge cycle in that battery. Certainly, isn't something I'd leave overnight. I would want to hook my battery to it, let it run a little bit to refresh that battery, and then pull it off so we didn't have to worry about overcharging or ruining our battery. Of course, you're going to have the parallel cables. Something I like about these, it's a little thing, but we've got these caps on the end.This is a plastic material down here, and storing it in our RVs, sometimes it's not going to be the nicest area. Storing it in our truck, storing it in our garage, these might get smashed. That's going to make it difficult to install. By putting the plugs in, it's going to keep our connections clean, and it's also going to keep them from deforming. It's something I like, again.I know it's a small thing. We're also going to have our 30 amp plug in here, so we've got our twist-lock, goes in our L5 here, which is a 30 Amp, plugs in and turns. That's going to allow us to use the other style, 30 amp RV plug. Now, looking over the generator, there's kind of a lot going on in here, but it's really pretty simple. We'll start right here in the middle.The red and the black, this is going to be for paralleling two units together. You'll use the included parallel cord, run them together, red to red, black to black. It's as simple as that. We're also going to have our multifunction switch here. We've got off, got run, and we've got start choke.Now, even with these warmed up a little bit, about right there is where you want it to start it. Then, generally, it's going to start up pretty quickly for you. This button is for eco mode. You can see by switching it into eco mode, it's going to idle at a lower level. It's going to save fuel, we're not going to be burning quite as much gas, but when we need the power, it's going to ramp right back up to what we need.I think that's a nice feature, especially when boondocking, because you've got a limited supply of fuel with you. You're not going to have to run out and grab more to be just a little bit more efficient for you. Flipping the switch back the other way is going to get us back into high power. By switching that to off, of course, it's going to go off. Now, here, we've got our standard 20 amp outlet.This is going to be 120 volts AC, same as this, 120 volts AC. We've got an AC circuit breaker here, so if we overload anything or if we have a short, that breaker is going to trip. That's going to save our generator from any kind of damage. We won't have to worry about replacing it. We simply press that back in, reset the breaker, and we'll be ready to go.You already know what that button is. That's our eco button. We've got a low oil alert. This is going to alert us that we've got a low oil situation. We need to be sure to add, and I like that. It's going to protect the motor.We're not going to have to worry about damage. Overload alarm, here. We overload the generator, maybe we've got our coffee pot running and we try to turn on a blow dryer, it exceeds the capacity, it's going to go into what sounds like almost an eco mode, and that light will come on. That case, you need to turn it from run to off. Let it die completely.Turn it back on and restart it, and that's going to reset everything, and just be careful not to overload it in that same manner. This light, when we start it, it'll flash just a couple times. As soon as that comes on solid, it indicates our output is right where we want it. It's putting out what it should, and we can start plugging in our devices. This is something that we don't see on the etrailer generator.This is a 12 volt plug-in outlet. It's an 8.3 amp, so about 8 amps of charge or 8 amps of power. We could plug a cellphone into that. We could plug the charging cables, which we'll talk about here in a minute, or any other type of 12 volts type accessory into that, maybe a fillet knife or something that you need to use there. The last thing is going to be our neutral here.Now, basically, what we would do here, we can see we've got a nut, a lock washer and a washer. We'd want to put a ring terminal on there, tighten that up, and then just stick a stake down under the ground. That's going to give us a nice neutral, so we know that we've got our generators grounded. We really won't have to worry about it. Something else that I really like about the generator, when we're filling the fuel, we've got a gauge right here, so we're not going to have to worry about that right at the last minute.It's filling up and not spilling a little bit. We can watch that gauge, and as it gets closer to full, we can be a little bit more careful. Also gives us a quick way to check it. Now, we've worked with A-iPower and we've given them our thoughts on their generator. What we ran into a few times from some of their customers and speaking with them, was that it just wasn't putting out the power that they expected.We talked to A-iPower, and basically, they brought their quality control standards up to a point to where when each generator comes out now, I think there's a very, very good chance that it's going to work exactly as it should. They've upgraded that inverter in there slightly to make sure we're getting the power out of it that we want. In some cases, before we kind of got involved and spoke with them, it seemed like it was every now and then, we'd get one that just wasn't putting out what it should, so I think we've got that situation rectified. Now, you might ask me, or I have been asked the question a few times, "Is that the generator that you would buy" I think it's a good generator.I think it's a generator that, especially in parallel, can take care of a lot of camping situations, but I don't think this would be the one I would pick. I really like the etrailer generator. We've got a video on that one as well, showing you exactly what it does. Now, it does not have the fuel gauge on top, and it does not have that 12 volt outlet on the front, but it seems to start a little bit easier and it seems to run just a little bit quieter. It also seems to me that when it gets in an overload situation, or if we've got our AC running and we kicked something else on, that it tries for just a little bit longer to get that stuff going.It seems like the A-iPower, when it gets in an overload, it's a little bit shorter before it decides it wants to quit, or that etrailer tries for just a little bit longer, and in most cases, that's enough to get the stuff running. With that being said, while I think these are a great generator and I really don't think it's a mistake to purchase them, I just have a tendency to enjoy and like using that etrailer generator. It's got the Firman technology built into it, and I really like that and trust that just a little bit more than the A-iPower.


Rainer G.

12/12/2021

Very informative BUT you missed showing the exact procedure to hook two units in parallel, yes there is the cable which is easy, but which unit do you plug the rv into. Thanks Rainer

Les D.

12/13/2021

I reached out to my contact at A-iPower and she told me that the units are identical. Simply plug the parallel cable to both units before starting them. You can plug into ONE of the 30amp outlets before starting as well.

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