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Old 11-26-2010, 09:19 PM   #1
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


Hello, first post here.

Is it possible to get 240 volts from a generator that only has 6 120 volt outlets? It's a Troy Bilt 3550. They make what looks like an identical model with 4x120 and 1x240. Looking at the wiring diagrams it seems like the only difference is that they wired up two "hots" to the 240.

Here is a link to the 6x120: (hope this works, you need acrobat reader to see it)

http://bsintek.basco.com/BriggsDocum...27ecKPq79DteBc

And a link to the one with 240:

http://bsintek.basco.com/BriggsDocum...krEFKE8FzXFix2


If it is doable it seems like a quick and dirty fix might be to fashion a cord with two male plugs on the 120 side and a female 240 twist outlet on the other side.

I would not be connecting this to the house wiring, just running extension cords when the power goes out. I need 240 for a 3/4 HP well pump. i would replace the well wiring with a plug and socket setup, where I would unplug from the house and plug into the generator when needed.

Thanks for any help.

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Old 11-26-2010, 09:35 PM   #2
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


the easiest way to check would be to fire it up and check voltage from the hot terminal (B) of DP-1 to the hot terminal (B) on either DP-2 or DP-3.

It does look possible though.

I'm sure this would void any applicable warranty.

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Old 11-26-2010, 09:35 PM   #3
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


Looking at the schematics it looks like you could, but i'm not that familiar with generators.
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Old 11-26-2010, 09:50 PM   #4
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


The top and bottom receptacle of DP3 has the hot from opposite sided so if you measure the top and bottom narrow slot of DP3 you should see 240 VAC
It looks like DP3 is change to a 240 volt plug in the other version.
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Old 11-26-2010, 10:10 PM   #5
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


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Originally Posted by a7ecorsair View Post
The top and bottom receptacle of DP3 has the hot from opposite sided so if you measure the top and bottom narrow slot of DP3 you should see 240 VAC
It looks like DP3 is change to a 240 volt plug in the other version.
good catch on that DP-3 recep.



so, check the voltage from the hot terminal of one of the receps in DP-3 to the hot terminal of the other recep in DP3. It should read 240 volts.
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Old 11-26-2010, 10:16 PM   #6
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


Indeed. It's almost definitely doable. You should be able to get 240 between the hots of any top receptacle and the one below it.

I'm not sure about the warranty-voiding theory. The OP just wants to take two male 5-15s and wire them up to a 240V socket. There are obvious safety problems with this (one side comes unplugged while a 240V load exists, loose plug is now live, think 'suicide cord') but I can't imagine how the manufacturer would ever know this was done.

Look on the back of the box containing the receptacles. Is there a connector there that can be unhooked? If so, I'll bet that if you order the electrical box for the "almost identical" model it'll plug in.
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Old 11-26-2010, 11:04 PM   #7
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


You guys are quick!

It's a used unit that I haven't bought yet, so warranty isn't an issue.

Thanks for the warning about the suicide cable.

I'll try on Monday to see if T-B has a replacement electrical box. I've heard their customer support has gone downhill lately.

Thanks for all the quick replies.
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Old 11-26-2010, 11:53 PM   #8
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


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Originally Posted by emolatur View Post

I'm not sure about the warranty-voiding theory. The OP just wants to take two male 5-15s and wire them up to a 240V socket. There are obvious safety problems with this (one side comes unplugged while a 240V load exists, loose plug is now live, think 'suicide cord') but I can't imagine how the manufacturer would ever know this was done.
.
generally, anytime you use a product it wasn't designed for, you void the warranty. If using jumper plugs and cables, it would be difficult if not impossible to prove it was done but still, it would most likely void any warranty. While likely unable to be determined this was done, I would rather warn a guy and let him make the call.
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Old 11-27-2010, 05:05 AM   #9
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


The model size ratings are usually surge output,not running capacity.240 volts @ 20 amps=4800 watts.You should look at running amps for your pump and think about buying a higher output generator. And using it safer.
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Old 11-27-2010, 10:26 AM   #10
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


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The model size ratings are usually surge output,not running capacity.240 volts @ 20 amps=4800 watts.You should look at running amps for your pump and think about buying a higher output generator. And using it safer.
It's a 3/4 HP pump. From what I see around the web it should be within range of the generator, for example one website says a 1 HP pump runs at 2500 watts with a surge requirement of 3500. The surge wattage on the genset is stated at 5250.
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Old 11-27-2010, 11:27 AM   #11
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


Is there a plate you can unscrew to reveal two hot lugs and one neutral lug for 120/240 volt power?
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Old 11-27-2010, 11:55 AM   #12
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


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Is there a plate you can unscrew to reveal two hot lugs and one neutral lug for 120/240 volt power?
Dunno. I don't have it yet. The diagram does show a 2x3 lug panel. Don't know how accessible it is.

Are you suggesting I wire in a 240 socket? I suppose I could do that and find a place to mount it.
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Old 12-07-2010, 12:16 PM   #13
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


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Originally Posted by ehoser View Post
You guys are quick!

It's a used unit that I haven't bought yet, so warranty isn't an issue.

Thanks for the warning about the suicide cable.

I'll try on Monday to see if T-B has a replacement electrical box. I've heard their customer support has gone downhill lately.

Thanks for all the quick replies.
If you already had it and were stuck with it, I think it would be a great idea to try to convert it to 240V. But if you haven't bought it, why not just find one that's already 120/240V in your price range?

I bought a Generac 7500W / 13,500W surge Generator from a Pawn Shop for $250 a couple years ago during hurricane season. The coolest thing about it is that it has a 50A NEMA 14-50 Plug on it, instead of one of those 30A twist lock plugs that most of the 240V generators come with nowadays.

If you are mechanically inclined and good with engines like I think you are, then buying a used generator is a great way to save money.

Good luck!

Or did you already buy it and convert it? How does it run?
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Old 12-07-2010, 01:20 PM   #14
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Can I get 240v out of 120 generator?


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Originally Posted by homerb View Post
If you already had it and were stuck with it, I think it would be a great idea to try to convert it to 240V. But if you haven't bought it, why not just find one that's already 120/240V in your price range?

I bought a Generac 7500W / 13,500W surge Generator from a Pawn Shop for $250 a couple years ago during hurricane season. The coolest thing about it is that it has a 50A NEMA 14-50 Plug on it, instead of one of those 30A twist lock plugs that most of the 240V generators come with nowadays.

If you are mechanically inclined and good with engines like I think you are, then buying a used generator is a great way to save money.

Good luck!

Or did you already buy it and convert it? How does it run?
The original generator was on Craigslist. They never replied to my second inquiry, so I kept looking. I ended up with a Generac 5000/6250 watt for less money. It has two 120v/20 amp, one 120/240v 20 amp and one 120v 30 amp outlets.

I now have some questions about these, but I think I will start a new thread. (I'll do a search to see if it's already been answered, but my search skills are lacking.)

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