cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Rental Company "Spider" Generator Issue

Clan_Graham
Weekend warrior

We dropped our RV off for a boondocking situation over Labor Day weekend (here in CA, it was the beginning of a pretty gnarly heatwave), and we assumed, when the renter gave us the address and we discovered that it was a remote venue, that they would need the full boondocking set-up, so (thankfully) we brought our generator and all of the extra fuel. 

When we got there, it turned out that there were A LOT of other boondocking RVs already set up and more to come! They had rented many "spider" generators (a lot of little generators that power several RVs that are then powered by an overall large generator) from United Rentals. We've never experienced this before and, at first, thought that it was a great solution!

As it turned out, it wasn't (not for our RV, anyway). As we were trying to set up, the large generator kept dropping our connection, and the power would go off constantly until someone fixed it somehow (thank goodness our refrigerator is solar powered because it would NOT have done well in this situation, otherwise).

Then, as I was going through the walkthrough with our renters, the little generator that we were hooked up to (or perhaps the large generator) managed to pop a fuse (or fuses?) in our RV (it sounded like a champagne cork being popped), and large billows of smoke came out of our fuse box, stinking up the RV... TWICE!

This has NEVER happened before, in ANY of our RVs, ever!! So we naturally assumed it was the small/large generator situation and ended up setting them up on our generator and asked them to please not connect to either the little or large generator and to use ours (though we were worried about our generator with the heatwave).

Our renters said everything was fine on their end with our generator, but we're VERY concerned about the fuses popping/smoking (though we couldn't find any evidence of damage). 

Does anyone have any experience with popping/smoking fuses that appear to be just fine? Should we be concerned? We're going to have our RV checked by a local RV repair shop, but we're also concerned about future rentals having a similar situation occur, so we're wondering-- In the future, if something like this happens again, should we just say, "Sorry, this is a serious risk so we can't rent to you?" 

Any experienced and/or knowledgeable advice would be super appreciated!!!

1 REPLY 1

SoCalRving1981
Day-tripper II

I've never heard of spider generators just spider boxes that come off a generator or main power source.  A fluctuation in voltage due to the generator taking on load (like all of the AC's running in the trailers that are hooked up) could have a momentary affect on supply voltage and cause damage.  Thankfully the fuses blew and protected your trailer.  I would ask the shop to check out the power cable that feeds fuse box for any damage to the pins or wire, also take a look at the fuse box for any signs of melting or pitting (where the fuses sit).  Outlets and power for appliances should be considered as well.