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We have a pretty massive generator – 12kW – onboard Starry Horizons. Because of our big generator, we got a big watermaker. We run our generator about every 4-5 days to fill our water tanks, but that’s not all we accomplish.
Since our generator is so big, the watermaker doesn’t apply enough load to be healthy for the generator. Usually, that means we run our air conditioning units too. But that’s not all we do!
A LOT. If it’s sunny out we can get four or five loads of laundry done in a day. Having the watermaker running too means that we can keep the water tanks topped up.
One of the issues we run into is the weather – in some places, it’s cold and rainy so we can’t line dry our laundry. Our washer/dryer combo enabled us to dry while running our generator, but just barely. If we had anything else using power, our inverter was unhappy.
The hot water heater only heats water when either the generator is running or the port engine is running. In the tropics, it’s no big deal because we usually take cold showers, but there are places where it’s chilly enough to need some heat. It’s kind of a vicious cycle actually; we take less showers because it’s cold water, but because we are taking less showers we use less water and therefore run the generator less often. Regardless, with the generator running for several hours to top off our water tank, we take full advantage by doing full showers, shaving, and any other personal hygiene that is better with hot water.
The generator pumps power into our battery bank. We also plug in items that don’t need charging all that often, like our kindles or electric toothbrush.