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Old 02-12-2014, 10:39 AM   #1
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power gas heater with a generator?

I have gas heat. So in my basement, there is a unit. I hear it come on and the flames literally fire up inside. Then the blower comes on to move the heat into my home.

Say our power goes out. I assume with no power to the thermostat, that tells the heater to shut off.

But what if I had a generator? Couldn't I power the blower/air handler and/or electrical parts of the gas heater itself, effectively putting normal heat back into my house during a power outage?

I think my thermostat is connected to the unit and powered via a thin wire. Then I believe there is only one line of romex running to the entire heating unit - I could be wrong.

But you get the idea here.

If this were totally possible, I assume then the next question would be how many watts would it draw?

If it's like 2000 watts or less - a small space heater takes up that entire amount. So why not use the normal system?


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Old 02-12-2014, 12:29 PM   #2
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a furnace takes roughly 4 amps x 120 volts = 480 watts. the problem is unless you get a high quality generator with an electronic governor/speed control the frequency of the power will vary from 58 to 62 hz and that can damage the circuit board. there are whole home generators that have that but your basic Honda portable one does not. they are designed for power tools. the power needs to be a steady 60 hz. I have a expensive electronic power conditioner that I bought from an electronics store for around $300 to use with my Coleman generator. Not the same as what you buy for a stereo (Monster) from a stereo shop either.


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Old 02-12-2014, 04:23 PM   #3
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A 1/3 HP blower motor will use about 500 watts. But takes alot more to start it.
When posting in certain forums, knowing your location will help others give better feedback/advice/solutions to your questions.
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