We admit it. We are a huge converts. Since we began using solar power and a pure sine wave inverter, we hardly use our Honda EU2000i generator anymore when we boondock. We camp mostly at higher elevations where summer temperatures are cooler and in the winter here in the desert, so we really have no need to run the air conditioner anymore. We’ve also removed the amperage eating microwave from the camper.
Living in the sun drenched southwest, the solar power/inverter combination can’t be beat. Our 240 watt solar power system keeps our two 6 volt, 220 amp hour batteries topped off on a daily basis, so we no longer need a generator. As for our 110 volt AC power needs, our Morningstar Suresine-300 pure sine wave inverter is more than sufficient. It can power our video and satellite system and keep all of our laptops and cell phones charged with power to spare. Better yet, the solar/inverter combination requires no fuel and generates no noise. When we boondock we want to enjoy the peace and quiet of nature. That’s part of the appeal. Nothing ruins the ambiance of camping in the wild more than a running generator, especially the teeth-rattling industrial ones like you get from Harbor Freight.
If you’re still lugging around a 46 pound or 120 pound generator you should consider going solar and installing an inverter. First, you won’t have to worry about it getting stolen. You’ll also save on weight and space and if you have any neighbors, it will make them happier, too. Numerous threads can be found on RV internet forums complaining about inconsiderate RV owners running their generators day and night. But it really comes down to one thing. If you need to run a high wattage device like your air conditioner, coffee maker, or hair dryer, then sadly, you’ll need to run your onboard generator or haul a portable unit with you. However, if it’s just the TV and satellite system that you’re powering, then a small inverter will be more than sufficient to power them and keep you and your neighbors happy.