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Wanna buy a generator

superj

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one of the guys that rides in my cycle club rolled up in a brand new powerboost f150 thursday. paper plates, that new. anyways, it sounded so weird pulling up because he was late so everyone was lined up to roll out so his was the only vehicles in the parking lot running. my buddy immediately goes its an electric truck i bet.
 


Eddo Rogue

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If you want SHTF or remote location, I would go diesel. Gas goes bad quick. Otherwise for backup power, camping, occasional outage etc. I would go inverter. Not just the power benefits, but they are also quieter. Some run on gasoline or also propane. You don't have to get a Honda or Yamaha either. Many brands have come a long way and even the HF isn't so bad. I have the 2k watt inverter genny from HF. Besides I run for a bit once a week to keep it fresh, and it fires ight p ever time. The 3500w inverter from HF would probably be your best bang for buck. I'm looking into a 3500w as well to run my little welder off site.

Solar has also come a long way, I have added a little solar setup in addition to the genny, and it was pretty cheap and easy, and idiot and bullet proof.
 

RonD

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Well pumps, home AC motors, and Furnace motors usually have Startup Capacitors, and these can wear out

Startup capacitors prevent a big AMP spike draw when motor starts up and also helps the motor start to spin
Electric motors have instant full torque so instant full AMP draw, lol

You can/should check the amp draw on the electric motors on startup and then when running
Some may have both AMP ratings on the label but most just have the running AMP draw
You have to add the spike draw in your calculations for generator's power supply, as things like a well pump can come on at anytime
 

lil_Blue_Ford

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So, a basic transfer switch beats running extension cords. You have to figure out how many circuits you need to energize and get an appropriate switch. Auto transfer is nice, but unless you are away from home for days at a time or live where outages are common, not really necessary. If you have natural gas available, a Generac or similar is really nice. Dragging out a generator all the time gets old. To size the generator, you need to figure out the loads. Well pumps can be power hogs.

I ended up with a good 5k generator because the people who bought it were trying to run a whole house plus 5 window AC units at the same time and kept overloading the generator, so they said the generator was junk and gave it to me as scrap. Nothing wrong with it, they were just being unrealistic. My parents have a 5k generator that runs the well pump and water filtration system, two fridges and a freezer, plus a couple other little things and a microwave. Everything can’t be running at the same time as far as the big things, but out of the 6 major things, 5 can run at once. All 6 and the generator struggles a bit. The house is super insulated with huge windows so heating and cooling are kind of non-issues though.
 

Roert42

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Them 3500 watt inverter are super quiet. The Generac iq3500 is so quite you can barley tell its there.

If I was going for portable that's where I would be looking.
 

RonD

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You can add a sub-panel
Move the breakers, and their wires, you want to use with generator, to that sub-panel
Then add manual transfer switch between the main and sub-panel

You can then add a 30, 40, or 50amp breaker to the main panel, in the now open spots, to feed the sub-panel

Its best to have an Electrician do all this because generator is single phase, 120vAC and main and sub-panels are setup for 2-phase, two 120vAC lines
 

ericbphoto

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Its best to have an Electrician do all this
Excellent and very important advice.

generator is single phase, 120vAC and main and sub-panels are setup for 2-phase, two 120vAC lines
Many generators in the US supply both 240VAC AND 120VAC. For a home backup generator, I would recommend 3500Watts or larger. Don't expect it to supply the whole house unless you get up above 10,000watts. Even then, it really isn't big enough to do everything unless your heating system, range and water heater are gas appliances.
 

don4331

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Project Manager in me wants the requirements better defined :)
How often is power out?​
How long is power out?​
How many appliances are we looking at?​
What is power draw of those appliances?​
Are they on circuits that can "reasonably" be separated?​
Do any of the circuits need 240v?​
What is the budget?​
I deal daily with individuals, who come to me with their solution, not the problem/requirements.

Because a couple UPS's might solve the problem for a lot less money. (Which isn't to say a generator is the wrong solution, we just need more information).
And yes, everyone but the accounts are unhappy when I come up with lower cost alternatives.​
 

Blmpkn

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When my parents built the house I grew up in my father bought a generator that would run only the essentials.. just in case. My mother thought it was silly to spend all that money on a generator that wouldn't run the whole house... but pa stood firm on his belief that "its fine".

Well.... it WAS fine.... until the ice storm of '98. We didn't have power for 2+ weeks.


icestorm2-pylons.jpg

album33photop4991e1e3622a1.jpg



We ended up keeping our food outside, so the fridge could be unplugged and pa could watch the massive power hungry 90s era big screen TV lol.


Buy a generator big enough to run your whole house. Should something happen where your left without power for an extended period you'll be more than happy you coughed up a bit extra money. Trust me. Been there, done that.
 

superj

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thats why i got the 12k. better to have to much than to little.
 

Roert42

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Only downside is, if you go to big, you'll have excessive fuel consumption. Can be in an issue with an extended power outage. Need to have a lot of extra fuel on hand, and cycle it through to keep it from going bad.
 

superj

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Total Drop
none
Tire Size
235s
My credo
Grew up in the 70s, 80s, and 90s
even though it runs gas, i only run it on propane. but yes, need more fuel. but since i have three places to run on it, small house, 17' travel trailer, and 12x28 shed we made into a one bedroom cabin, i can power all three if needed
 

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Only downside is, if you go to big, you'll have excessive fuel consumption. Can be in an issue with an extended power outage. Need to have a lot of extra fuel on hand, and cycle it through to keep it from going bad.
Most portable generators usually have one speed, so yes, the bigger the more fuel consumption. A lot of the standby types like Generac will vary speed based on load so you’re not always just full consumption mode or off. But you are spending more as an initial investment.
 

Roert42

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Yeah, I my 8Kw will vary rpm based on load. Works ok.

Just saying that if all you want to do is run a refrigerator and a radio you would probably be good with a tiny Honda that sips fuel vs something bigger, even with idle control.

Sounds like OP really is looking for something bigger anyway.
 

Mightyfordranger

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Clean your room before you criticise the world.
Here's what I want to run with the backup genset.
Fridge
Wood stove blower
Propane powered tankless water heater so just the switches and the microprocessor that are internal maybe?
Well pump 240v
Maybe the furnace but I'd like to just use the wood burner, furnace is propane
Medium size chest freezer
One outlet in the living room for a TV to watch old westerns when the power is out.
And a light in the kitchen.

Now I want a genset that runs on gas and propane cause I don't have natural gas lines near me. That being said if the power goes out I can run my genset off the big tank in the yard for a few days no issue. Propane never goes bad just the container does. I can run it from barbeque tanks if I have to ya know. If there's no power to run a gas pump I can buy a tank off the rack outside the gas station and pay cash.
Diesel is nice but we are seeing shortages of it where I live. They are short lived refilled by the next day but I'm sure it'll get worse overtime.

But does anyone know anything about Total Harmonic Distortion?

Also the area where my house is does suffers from poorly maintained power lines. so its not uncommon when a tree is taken out by strong winds and takes a power line with it. Also few friends have reported that during peak power demands (everyone running a/c) they experienced power loss and brown outs. Which that doesn't sound normal to me for that area I grew up there. So seems to me the grid is showing new signs of stress and minor unreliability.

Which honestly seems to me that we are going to see more of this with electric cars and green energy agenda. So backup power and more self reliance is going to grow in necessity as time goes on.
 
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