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drrichardichy 12-01-2006 11:13 PM

Generator Purchase . . .
I am in the process of selecting a generator that I can use as a back up for the house. I plan to get a smaller one that i can wheel outside and then plug in to a 3 prong or 4 prong receptacle that is on the outside of the house that is wired to a subpanel that I can manually switch to to backfeed the desired circuits.

Here's the question . . .

I figure the ideal generator for me is a 6kw diesel model. I figure 4k running watts are about all I'd ever need.

Problem is, the outlets on the 6kw generator that I am looking at are capped at 30Amp. So there is a standard 20 amp two pole receptacle, a 3 prong 30 Amp, and a 4 prong 30 amp.

Am I correct to think that the most wattage that I will be able to get out of this unit using just one cord will be 30amp x 120V, or 3600 Watts?

The reason this is important is that there is a 4kw generator that is 400$ less that has the same 30amp 4 prong outlet. If I want to set up a single cord plug, does it make any sense to get the larger unit?

All thoughts appreciated.

mdshunk 12-02-2006 10:03 AM

A fully loaded 30 amp 4 prong receptacle has a 7200 watt capability.

joed 12-02-2006 10:32 AM

It is 30amp x 240 volts. Which is 7200 watts like MD siad.

drrichardichy 12-04-2006 09:44 AM

Thanks for the answers guys. Dead on.

Time for another?

I'm going to install a 240V 30amp breaker on the main panel and run it out to a subpanel, where I will relocate the 3 or 4 circuits I want to back up.

The generator will feed the subpanel.

[Is it proper and safe to use the breaker switch to shut off the connection before I turn the generator on to prevent feedback into the mains?

Should I also install a manual switch between the two panels?

Is there something else (I want to stick with manual).]

The subpanel I am buying is designed for use with a generator and has a built in transfer switch to prevent back feed, so I am all set.


sootybuttercup 12-08-2006 06:31 PM

Glad to hear you got a "proper" transfer switch. Is the neutral on your generator floating or bonded to the frame? This can affect the type of transfer switch needed and how it's to be properly wired. Are you aware of this issue?

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