New Honda Generator Oil Questions

Messages
184
Location
Virginia, USA
Hello everyone. I just purchased my first ever generator. The purpose of the generator is for emergency use and for basic needs. The generator is the Honda EU2200I. I plan on keeping it for a long time and following the service schedule. Heck, I even irdered the shop repair manual for it. The owners manual is clear about using 10W-30 motor oil. It is also clear about an oil change at 20 hours and then every 100 hours. I am thinking break in period. I contacted Honda via a phone call and they told me that they build, test, and suggest using conventional motor oil. Honda is not clear in the manual if I should use conventional or synthetic oil. The person from Honda said conventional is what the engine was designed for thus using synthetic is not needed. What are your thought? Due to a break in period, I was thinking about using conventional oil for at leadt the first 20 hour oil change. After the break in petiod should I keep conventional in it or put synthetic in it? In reality, would it matter? In other words if I keep the maintenance up, would synthetic matter? Thanks for the help.
 
Messages
55
Location
PA
Will you approach or exceed 100hrs? I start my honda clone every month for 1/2 hour, last year I ran about 15 hrs for power failure. Thats 21 hrs plus or minus 5 hrs per year. Oil should be replaced every 12 month.

So yeah, buy the most expensive synthetic you can buy.


... just kidding, I use store brand synthetic Walmart, pep boys, napa etc. Or a decent conventional. Won't matter as long as you change it.
 
Messages
13,085
Location
Indiana
The Honda phone rep likely knew what he was talking about to a degree, but there’s no reason to use one over the other. An engine can’t be designed for one over the other. They probably just use conventional because it’s cheaper.

M1 10w30 HM or Delvac 10w30 synthetic if the warranty concerns you after that 20 hr break in otherwise I’d use a 0w40. For the break in, use whatever. 20 hrs is nothing.
 
Messages
1,020
Location
Pennsylvania
Both of my generators were broken in on 10w-30 Mobil1 High Mileage and were later switched to 5w-40 RT6. I can't say that I've noticed any operational differences between the two, and I may switch back to the M1 because it's the oil of choice for the majority of my OPE. I cannot think of a good reason, other than cost, to use a conventional oil. If you are using less than one quart per year then that difference is almost meaningless. If you were Honda and producing a million small engines per year, the the math changes.
 
Messages
695
Location
Manvel, Texas
This post was timely. I just bought the same generator as a backup for our standby unit. I have a lot of Honda equipment and I use AMSOIL small engine oil in all of it after breaking them in on Honda’s Power Equipment oil. Some may disagree but I like the idea of an oil designed for small engines. Most automotive oils are designed to protect emissions systems and were not designed with air cooled engines in mind. However, the reality is that the engine in these generators is a rammer engine from Honda’s commercial line. It is designed to live a life of hard contract work for hundreds if not thousands of hours. Heck many contractors run these little generators for thousands of hours with spotty maintenance. The odds are that regardless of oil choice, in the hands of a thoughtful private owner it will last practically forever.
 
Messages
2,279
Location
WNY
Nice generator! I have an EU2200i myself. My initial fill from new was Rotella Gas Truck 5W-30. I ran that for about 5 hours, then dumped it. I now have Delo 5W-40 in it. I plan to dump around 20 hours and fill again with some synthetic HDEO 5W-40 or 0W-40.
 
Messages
517
Location
VA
I would run syn in it. My Yamaha 2K only holds .41 qts, if you actually put it into service during an outage, you could rack up hours quick.
I run M1 Euro 0-40 in mine
 
Messages
111
Location
Kansas
My thoughts,
My Honda 5000 was broke in on conventional 10w40. My prior unit was a Homelite with a 7.5 L head Subaru-Robin engine which is similar to an old school Briggs.
In my experience with air cooled engines I believe synthetic is the best choice for all climates and longevity. I could not pull start the Homelite in cold weather when it had conventional oil in it. It was kept in an unheated barn and below 20 degrees it was just too hard to get going. M1 0w30 made a believer out of me. My 12 year old Son was able to pull start it in cold weather. I currently use M1 10w40 in my Honda. It pull starts easily in cold weather. Syn holds up to heat much better than conventional. All my air cooled OPE has Mobil 1 in it. Break your genny in on conventional then try M1. Your genny will be happy.
 
Messages
2,393
Location
Paradise of Florida
My EU's have always run synthetic oil. And, even though I change the oil frequently enough, sometimes I 'exceed' Honda's interval and don't worry about it since the synth should last longer than conventional. Like someone wants to change their generator oil half-way thru a power outage caused by a hurricane, tornado, or blizzard? 100hrs is just over 4-5 days(should cover most outages). Been without power for 2-3 weeks several times and have enough going on to add more chores and will run the synth to 150-200hrs without worry because it was an emergency. Oil level checked and full at every fuel fill up!!! 4-5 day oil change interval vs 8-10 day interval during emergency usage is something you should consider.

Honda makes excellent synthetic small engine oils. I would definitely stick with higher z/p oils, or HTHS, or both!

The aftermarket make some screw on funnels and magnetic dipsticks.

And, my EU2000's, 2200's, and 3000's.... never had an issue with 5w30 sae30 0w40....

SJ and synthetic and should be found at any dealer locally:

And, what I typical use with an online order:

What I can't find locally but would consider:

My last generators service were refilled with this from Napa, since they didn't have any of the above:

All my engines were broken in on synthetic too.

And, all my small engines run well-stabilized ethanol free G100. No E10 foolishness here! Walmart sells 93 octane ethanol free 100% gasoline at the pumps around here, but can source from the local Chevron and PureGas stations too. The benefit of living near the ocean is the fuel pumps cater to boaters!


And, if the jugs of fuel are over a year old, I just fill the cars with them and refresh my fuel storage tanks.
 
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s1mp13m4n

Thread starter
Messages
184
Location
Virginia, USA
Thank you everyone for your help. I live on a small farm, in the stix, and the nearest Walmart is a 30 mile round trip. This is my first new, high quality generator and $1100 is a lot of money to me. Near me is a NAPA and Tractor Supply. Our truck has TSC Travelers Synthetic in it at the moment. I have brand new NoSpill brand gas cans and a new bottle of Staibil. I too thought it was strange that in 2021 Honda would suggest conventional oil. I could understand it for break in but did not compute to not use a quality synthetic after break in. I am responsible for all the DIY mechanic work around here. I just want to do my best at making sure this generator lasts decades. I am only use to someone's Older, used stuff you have to repair before it will run (mower, generator, etc). In the case of this Honda I want to prevent and maintain rather than repair. This model has Bluetooth and a smartphone app. Pretty slick as it keeps a data log for me. Thank you all for the help.
 

s1mp13m4n

Thread starter
Messages
184
Location
Virginia, USA
Thank you everyone for the help. I got my 10W-30 quart from TSC. Put the proper amount of Stabil in the new gas can. Put oil in the generaltor and a small amount of petrol. Now I understand why people buy a Honda. You can actually have a conversation around it. Starts with one pull. The MyGenerator app is pretty slick. I like how it shows your draw in watts right on your iPhone. No need to add an hour meter as the app logs data for you and keeps the service schedule for you. Thank you all for the help. Now my family has a small, power basic needs type generator. My step dad is on a cpap machine....that was one of the reasons I bought it.
 
Messages
676
And the EU 3000 is even quieter. Feed it good E0 fuel or better yet Vpracing C9 for awesome storage long term and any syn 10w30 you'll be fine.
Thank you everyone for the help. I got my 10W-30 quart from TSC. Put the proper amount of Stabil in the new gas can. Put oil in the generaltor and a small amount of petrol. Now I understand why people buy a Honda. You can actually have a conversation around it. Starts with one pull. The MyGenerator app is pretty slick. I like how it shows your draw in watts right on your iPhone. No need to add an hour meter as the app logs data for you and keeps the service schedule for you. Thank you all for the help. Now my family has a small, power basic needs type generator. My step dad is on a cpap machine....that was one of the reasons I bought it.
 
Messages
5,006
Location
Southeast
I’ve had two eu2000i generators. I had one, sold it for a larger inverter, but later bought another because I prefer several things about the eu2k. #2 just hit 20 hours today.

I dumped the original Honda oil today and it was decently clean for a first break-in oil. I’ve had Honda engines which dumped a lot more little shiny speckles on their first oil change. I prefer to break engines in on conventional oil. At least back in the 80s, some synthetics did not do well with break-in.

on my last eu2k, I switched to synthetic 10-30 after 20 hours or so and ran it that way until I sold it. It never missed a beat, and didnt consume any oil over a few years of use.

i would NOT run a 5-30 in it, I’ve had previous issues with mobil 1 5-30 shearing down in air cooled engines, resulting in smoky starts and continued metal shavings in oil.

summary - my vote is for a 10-30 syn after a good few hours on a regular oil.
 
Messages
4,699
Location
Ca.
Synthetic is an upgrade. Don't plan on running much with only 2200watts.
For sure.....you aren't "living large" on 2200 surge 1800 continuous - two of em can be real nice though.

I find these things incredibly useful, and when faced with nothing 2/2200 becomes a very welcome addition to saving a fridge/ freezer full of food you just dropped 500 bones on a day ago. After losing two of those my dual doctor neighbor were loaned one of mine - they are low 40 years old and still carry huge debt.

One often is easier to move to a location than run a long extension cord.

Two of them in parallel make more than the 3K & 3500's and are much easier for one person to move around and manage and can start a standard 15K ac unit with a hard start kit, or a 13.5 with a kit when 2 are on eco.

I've dry camped with them using 2 and running a mid sized Air conditioner all day and when it cools down cutting back to one charging a bank that powers and inverter so you have a nice reservoir to use, and limit the Hondas RPM by driving a smaller but high quality 5 amp charger.

The downside to that is a bit of wiring and of course maintaining and fueling 2 crankcases, but the extended run kits are pretty cool.
 
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Messages
236
Location
MI
I broke my EU2000i in on Honda 10W-30 oil. They filled it when I bought it and gave me a quart of it.

I changed the oil after 30 minutes of running to get the initial break-in glitter out of the engine. Then I changed every 2-5 hours until the drained oil came out clean (without any metal glitter when viewed in the sunshine).

I'm now using up the last of a jug of Mobil 1 10W-30 oil in it. I have a new jug of Mobil 1 Turbo Diesel Truck 5W-40 I got on sale in the queue for the next oil change. Honestly, the 10W-30 did just fine in the winter in SE Michigan this last year during four power outages. It pulled over and started up just fine in 20 degree weather.

Now I'm on the 100hr or annual OCI plan. (Actually, I'll only change it at the end of the season if it has more than 20 or so hours on it. If not, I'll leave the oil in for another year. My annual use varies depending on camping sites and power outages at home.)
 
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