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Old 10-07-2012, 08:31 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by matt151617 View Post
As far as running a cord, I can use the dryer style plug. Can this be wired directly into the panel or will I need to add an outlet for it at the panel (and modify the cord to have a male plug in both ends)?
I cannot stress this enough...DO NOT USE A DRYER RECEPTACLE! The cord you will have to make will be live on the end and if you have a plug those exposed prongs will be live.

You have absolutely no clue what you are doing.

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Old 10-07-2012, 08:36 AM   #17
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How? That could only happen if I plug it into the generator and leave the other end loose. If there's an interlok installed, then it's not possible for the cord to be energized by the panel from line power.

All I need to know is how to run 30 amps from the generator into the panel using one of the plug styles available...
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:43 AM   #18
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You would need to install an inlet not an outlet.


You stated earlier...
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I'd always remember to shut off the main but the wife may not remember no matter how many times I tell her about it. I'd hate to see someone get killed or injured because of this.
How can you be sure she would remember to plug into the dryer outlet before plugging the cord into the generator? Besides that...its not legal.

There may be a legal and easier way to do what you want to do, but you have to post the make and model of the generator for us to help you. Right now, you are hacking together in your mind that you think will work without knowing a whole lot about what you are actually doing.
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:53 AM   #19
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Champion 40026.
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:55 AM   #20
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Since it seems you are hell-bent on doing this, I need to ask how you know you don 't have any multi-wire branch circuits and if you know what multi-wire branch circuits are?
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Old 10-07-2012, 09:24 AM   #21
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2 hots sharing one neutral. Don't know if a subpanel counts for this or not but it doesn't matter, it won't be used with the generator anyways. IIRC any MWBC would need to be wired to a dual breaker, and the only dual breakers I have are dryer, hot water heater, stove/oven, and a garage subpanel.

What I plan on running is a lighting circuit or two, a boiler circulator pump, freezer, fridge, and sump pump.
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Old 10-07-2012, 09:26 AM   #22
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In my opinion, this generator wasn't intended for home use, it was designed for portable and RV usage, however, it does state you can use it for what you want to use it for.

The only safe and compliant way to do this would be to do the following:
-Install ground rod(s) to connect when the generator is in use.
-Install 30A inlet near where the generator will be placed.
-Make or buy a cord rated for 25A (10-3 SO) with a male end and a female end
-Install 10-2 romex to the inlet
-Install a new, small subpanel for the loads you want to power with the generator
-Label the new subpanel "120V Only"
-Install 2 2P 25A breakers in the new sub in order for the interlock to work
-Move the circuits you want to power by the generator to the subpanel

There are more steps to actually wiring up the subpanel and breakers but I will hold off. I am trying to show you that there is no easy way to do this while maintaining safety and code compliance.
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Old 10-07-2012, 09:36 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by matt151617 View Post
2 hots sharing one neutral. Don't know if a subpanel counts for this or not but it doesn't matter, it won't be used with the generator anyways. IIRC any MWBC would need to be wired to a dual breaker, and the only dual breakers I have are dryer, hot water heater, stove/oven, and a garage subpanel.

What I plan on running is a lighting circuit or two, a boiler circulator pump, freezer, fridge, and sump pump.
Two pole breakers were mandated for MWBC's in the 2008 NEC. So, there is a very good chance that this code was not in effect when the service was originally installed. So, you probably won't be able to tell if you have any MWBC's by looking at the breakers.

You will also need to hook up the boiler to the generator and with that list, you are pushing, if not exceeding the generators limits.
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Old 10-07-2012, 10:04 AM   #24
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It is not a good idea to summarily re-arrange the various branch circuits in the panel so the ones you want to power up using the generator are all on one side.

This could cause an imbalance in the panel that trips the main breaker during normal use.

If you know how to do a load analysis (doesn't have to be as precise as that needed for a major addition) then you would be able to figure out which circuits need to be moved to the other side if you want to move several circuits to one side.

If you are going to install a subpanel to hold all the circuits eligible for generator power you might as well install a transfer switch between it and the main panel rather than use interlocks. A transfer switch is safer than an interlock and in this particular case it doesn't have to be that big in terms of amperage.

You can buy a transfer switch box with several (typically between 6 and 12) small transfer switches instead of one big transfer switch. This is mounted next to the panel. Selected circuits from the main panel are wired to go into the transfer switch box. The box has a male receptacle (inlet) so a patch cord (extension cord) can be connected to the generator. Circuits from either side of the main panel can end up powered by a 120 volt generator if you so chose.

The degenerate form of the preceding is a do it yourself project to power a hard wired 120 volt appliance such as a furnace using a generator connected using only ordinary extension cords. It contains one 3-way switch with the common terminal connected to the load (furnace, etc.), one traveler terminal connected to the original feed, and the other traveler terminal connected to a 15 amp male receptacle which might fit in the same box.

When adapting a 240 volt plug or receptacle to 120 volt usage, connect all of the hot wires to one prong, using crimp lugs (for a plug) or pigtails (for a receptacle) if needed to avoid two wires under one screw. Leave the other hot prong unconnected. Do not put a jumper between prongs.

You may never construct let alone use a cord with (male) plugs at both ends.
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Old 10-07-2012, 10:36 AM   #25
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Well damn, I guess I'll just go with a transfer switch then. The plug going into the box looks replaceable. Unfortunately the kit costs as much as the generator.
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Old 10-07-2012, 02:22 PM   #26
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There is no cheap way to do it properly. Have a professional do it properly, someone who understands the concept. An improperly installed generator can kill a lineman.
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Old 10-07-2012, 07:43 PM   #27
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I'm looking for the best way to wire up a 30 amp generator that's 120 volts only to my panel. The generator has a dryer plug-style plug and also a RV style. I am not looking to power any 240v circuits.

Problem I've seen with transfer switch kits is they have 4 prong cords, and my generator has 3 prongs.

I also thought of an interlock kit but they seem to need a 240v breaker. Could I split the 120 so it covers both legs of the panel?


Reliance makes 120v transfer switches...
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Old 10-08-2012, 07:09 AM   #28
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I have 2 issues with using extension cords. First, one of the big reasons I wanted a generator was to be able to power the furnace in an outage. Certainly can't do that without hard wiring. And second, I only have 2 long extension cords. And good quality ones aren't cheap.

I think I will get an interlok for the panel, use a single breaker, and just move any circuits I want to power to that leg of the panel. As far as running a cord, I can use the dryer style plug. Can this be wired directly into the panel or will I need to add an outlet for it at the panel (and modify the cord to have a male plug in both ends)?
I'm all for DIY, but threads like yours scare the heck out of me. You obviously have no idea what you're doing, and are arguing with those here who do and are trying to help you. Please listen to them. If you screw up plumbing, you'll know it. If you screw up electrial, your survivors (or somebody else's) will know it.

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