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Yamaha EF2400iSHC, 2000 Running Watts/2400 Starting Watts, Gas Powered Portable Inverter
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- Increased motor starting capability and improved air conditioner starting
- Provides power that is as clean, or cleaner than commercial power and adjusts the engine speed to precisely match the load
- Prevents engine damage caused by low oil, avoiding costly repairs and minimizing down time, adding customer confidence and peace of mind
- Improved efficiency, increased reliability, quieter operation and easy portability; Cast iron cylinder liner— Provides long engine life and consistent performance during continuous use
- Will run most 13,500 btu RV air conditioners, microwave/convection ovens, or even the biggest hair blow dryer
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Yamaha generators have the longest emission engine durability ratings issued by the Environmental Protection Agency and the California Air Resources Board. Gasoline petcock lets you shut off the gas to run the carb dry for storage and helps prevent stale gas problems. Fuel gauge allows fuel level to be seen at-a-glance. This model boasts High Current output which is designed specifically to increase motor starting capability and to improve air conditioner starting. This High Current model starts most high efficiency 13,500 but AC in temperatures up to 110-Degree F. The EF2400iSHC has an aluminum die-cast frame, combined with an aluminum TCI rotor and other weight-saving measures to provide a powerful and compact generator weighing only 75 pounds. The EF2400iSHC uses Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) to produce high-quality electricity comparable to the power supplied by public utilities. Use this generator with confidence as a power source for microcomputer-controlled appliances and other devices with built-in computer functions. Yamaha's Smart Throttle feature automatically adjusts engine speed to match the load. The result is quiet running, maximum fuel efficiency and a run time of 8.6 hours at 1/4 capacity load. Yamaha's Oil Watch Warning System helps prevent engine damage from low oil and provides added peace of mind.
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The short answer to the above question is either unit is a great choice. I would rate either of them 5 stars. Each is suited for a particular function and each has their drawbacks. Here are some of my observations on each unit:
* More watts and amps than the Honda. The Yamaha is "rated" at 16.7 amps with "rated" surge capability to 20 amps. Very useful when trying to start electric motors such as a freezer compressor or and A/C unit. Hayes Equipment Company tested the Yamaha 2400 on a load bank and it held a 30 amp (not a typo, 30 amp) surge for 10 seconds, this is how the unit is advertised to start newer 13,500 BTU A/C units in RV's. The 10 second surge is enough power to start the compressor until the running wattage drops to below the rated amps when the unit is running. Give serious consideration to the Yamaha if you are going to run anything with a compressor such as a A/C unit. Honda Amps are 13.3 rated and 16.7 surge.
The Honda has an econ mode that can be disengaged when you need more power. Econ mode greatly reduces the sound level and contributes to the machines excellent fuel economy by reducing engine RPM. This one feature really makes the Honda the machine it is. However the engine has problems spooling up to high demand when in economy mode with some electric motors such as a small A/C unit (see below). Newer energy efficient A/C units will fare better than the older units. I have seen video's of the Honda running newer 5000 BTU units.
The Yamaha has no econ mode, but does have an electric throttle which accomplishes the same thing and it is more responsive to surge demands.
* The Yamaha seems quieter under max load than the Honda. (The Honda is slightly quieter at idle, but it's not normally operated at idle). I did not perform any special tests, just my perception. Both are super quiet the Yamaha at 53-58 db and the Honda at 53-59 db. Keep in mind the Yamaha is at 58 db putting out 2000 watts and the Honda at 59 at only 1600 watts. So in my opinion, power to noise ratio is slightly better on the Yamaha, but not a big deal they are both quiet machines.
* Looking at the engine, the Yamaha seems better built with quality fittings, fuel lines and engine mounts compared to the Honda. The outside case is framed in aluminum rather than the Honda in plastic. The Yamaha also has a cast iron cylinder liner absent on the Honda. This is desirable under continuous operation and for long life.
*Placement of controls and service points. The Yamaha has a fuel shutoff switch, all controls on one side of the machine and a visible fuel gauge. The Honda has no fuel shutoff or fuel gauge and controls on several sides of the machine.
* Price, the Yamaha sells for more money than the Honda. Shop around for the best prices.
* Fuel Consumption, the Yamaha has a 5.5 HP engine while the Honda is a 3.5 HP so it's going to burn more fuel. Don't read too much into this, both are great on fuel. I found if you are at higher wattages they are about the same, less than max, the Honda will burn less fuel. At Idle and low loads it's noticeable but not enough to be significant, maybe a gallon of gas in 24 hours. Again, keep in mind fuel consumption is load sensitive.
* Weight...this is the major factor. The Yamaha weights 75 lbs. Most men can pick it up and move it short distances but it is not light. The Honda at 46 lbs is the clear winner here.
* Remote fuel tanks are not available for the Yamaha. The Honda has a built in fuel pump that allows filling a 6 gallon remote tank to allow it to run up to 72 hours without refueling. This is a very nice feature. A remote tank set up is only about $100 and is well worth the money.
My personal situation is I use the generators at a hunting camp. I run a few lights and a small electric heater (1500 watts) in the winter and a small older 7500 BTU A/C in the summer. The Honda will not run the A/C in Econ mode; it trips the generator circuit breaker when the compressor kicks in because it cannot spool up fast enough for the required additional load. If you run it without the Econ mode engaged, it will handle the A/C but it is loud and exhibits poor fuel economy. Running the 1500 watt heater, the Honda is almost maxed out at its 1600 watt rating.
Think about what you will use the generator for before you buy. If you are sensitive to the weight issue or don't need 2000 watts, the Honda is a clear choice. If you can handle the weight and are going to try to run anything with a high amp motor such as an A/C unit the Yamaha is the way to go. Yes you can parallel two Hondas to roughly double the power and you can't do that with the Yamaha, but the cost of two Honda's and the kit to hook them in series tops out at over $2100 plus tax.
There you have it, my perception, of the features and drawbacks of these two great machines. Best of luck in your decision.
April 12, 2011 update.............
Now have estimated 125 hours on the Yamaha and about 75 hours on the Honda. Both are giving great service. Only one issue for the Yamaha. I covered this generator with a plastic trash can liner in a very severe rainstorm during a camping trip. The generator was warm and condensation developed inside the bag and the fuel tank.The engine would idle but not carry a load. Sounded like it was running out of gas and die. Treated the fuel inside the tank with 2 ounces of Sea Foam fuel additive and that solved the problem. It runs fine now. I recommend you keep some type of fuel additive in your fuel at all times to prevent this from happening. Two good products I have personally tested and recommend are Startron and the aforementioned Sea Foam. However to prevent water build up inside your tank the additive must be used everytime you add gasoline or you can just mix it with your fuel.
The Yamaha has become my favorite generator simply because of the way I use it. I am getting about 10 hours of service from the unit at 500 watts of intermitent usage (using a heater with a thermostat running all night). The factory specs state 8.6 hours run time at 1/4 load (about 500 watts) of contunious usage, so these specs are right on the money.
In the near future, I'll be evaluating the Yamaha EF 2800I Generator. That review will appear on Amazon under that product name and not here. For the record, I am not affiliated in any way with Honda,Yamaha,Startron or Sea Foam. I just like products that work as advertised and don't mind sharing my experience.
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