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What is your generator situation

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Old 03-26-2010, 11:09 AM   #16
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i doubt you'll have to turn things off. 18kw is a ton of power. an easy way to find out would be to flip on the big draws like the dryer and other things that you figure you would be using at time of "heavy usage" and use an amp meter to check what the mains are drawing. Even though you've got a 300A service rarely will you ever be taxing it to it's full potential. legally i would think though that if the generator doesn't have an overcurrent device built in that there would have to be one on the inside of the house to protect your gen because the 300A mains won't do it.
Either way sounds like a real nice set up when it's done. Anytime you can go off grid and not have your life disrupted is a plus. I always have people tell me that they don't see a point in having a generator but i generally get a phone call from the people i've installed them for thanking me after the first power outage.
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Old 03-26-2010, 02:01 PM   #17
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I just hooked up a generac 8kw propane with an automatic transfer switch. After all was done, he was reading the owners manual and came across the part where fuel consumtion is rated. He called me back and asked me to "un-hook the automatic part, just make it manual". It was right at a gallon per hour. He was afraid that it would come on at night and cost him money to run it for nothing. If this is correct on the fuel consumtion, it would cost him nearly $75 a day to run part of his house.

Could you please add "can't afford to feed a generator to the poll"?
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Old 03-26-2010, 03:51 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Scuba_Dave View Post
I figure if I use it just once in 20 years it has paid for itself
Even 10 years --$500/10 = $50 a year "insurance" policy
I've spent more on a round of drinks
I think you forgot to count the cost of fuel! I'm considering a modest solar system with a good battery bank so that I don't go broke or have to drive long distances to get gas.
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Old 03-27-2010, 12:13 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by jcalvin View Post
I just hooked up a generac 8kw propane with an automatic transfer switch. After all was done, he was reading the owners manual and came across the part where fuel consumtion is rated. He called me back and asked me to "un-hook the automatic part, just make it manual". It was right at a gallon per hour. He was afraid that it would come on at night and cost him money to run it for nothing. If this is correct on the fuel consumtion, it would cost him nearly $75 a day to run part of his house.

Could you please add "can't afford to feed a generator to the poll"?

I did dig up the specs on the generator and accourding the the list the half load { 4 Kw } it will use .94 gallon per hour while full load it will be using 1.68 gallon per hour.

However if you are just exercizing the generator { no load } the fuel useage will be much lower but I do know the Generarc do have optional quiet test which it will run the engine in lower speed due keep the noise down and fuel useage lower.

75 dollars a day is not far fetched all it depending on the price of propane gaz so the actual cost of propane gaz it will depending on the location and how that person deal with qualinty of propane gaz order.

By the way my 20 KW diesel generator at full load the fuel rate is only 8 liter per hour { apx 2 gallons per hour }

and mine 5 KW is typically run 3 liter per hour.

Merci,Marc
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Old 03-27-2010, 10:50 AM   #20
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why not get the deisel fixed up and up to code?

I'v used the little portable ones to keep food from spoiling and the fish alive during the big mess a few years back, but in general, I never loose power for long.
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Old 03-27-2010, 01:45 PM   #21
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why not get the deisel fixed up and up to code?

I'v used the little portable ones to keep food from spoiling and the fish alive during the big mess a few years back, but in general, I never loose power for long.
It can be done if OP's oringal diesel generator is working and able get the parts and have the electrician to come in and address the issue to get it running properly however I know some peoples don't like diesel due too noisy or fuel issue one of the two.

For myself I have no issue due I have on road diesel for my generators plus mine furances they run on diesel fuel ditto with water heater so I have fresh fuel ready all the time and I have few diesel trucks in my fleet so it is not a moot point for long term storage but for other readers there is few stuff that you can use to put in the diesel fuel for long term storage they have pretty good shelf life but not the excat the same with propane gaz with storage life.

Just like any other engine gaz or diesel primemover engines they do need to run from time to time to keep it running properly.

Merci,Marc
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Old 03-27-2010, 08:43 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by forresth View Post
why not get the deisel fixed up and up to code?

I've used the little portable ones to keep food from spoiling and the fish alive during the big mess a few years back, but in general, I never loose power for long.
That's a good idea! I will look into it, I will still have automatic transfer switch installed anyway. My only concern would be outage when I am not home. But even then should be able to get home within hours???
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Old 03-27-2010, 10:26 PM   #23
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Do you have any idea how many KW do that diesel generator it is ?

and what brand name I may able give you some answer with it.

Due I work on quite few diffrent size generators from small single banger to monster one that can keep the mid size city lit up.

If get it fix it may be cheaper than buying a new propane unit plus related stuff along the way.

Merci,Marc
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Old 03-28-2010, 06:15 AM   #24
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We lost power for 7 days in Feb. My 5.5 kw. generator ran 7 days
and averaged 15 hrs. on 5 gallons of gas.

Make sure you have oil also,because they'll use it ,too.
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Old 03-28-2010, 10:02 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by operagost View Post
I think you forgot to count the cost of fuel! I'm considering a modest solar system with a good battery bank so that I don't go broke or have to drive long distances to get gas.
Fuel is the least of my worries
Truck has 27g tank, wifes has a 14g tank + 18g in gas cans
15 hrs on 5g = 3hrs a gallon = 8g a day * 2.75 = $22 a day
That's IF you run it 24x7....I'd shut it off at night - 6-8 hours
So only 6g a day = $16.50...vs normal $8 a day electric use
I'd hardly call that going broke...an extra $8 a day ?

To equal a 6kw Gen you need 30 200w solar panels
A 6kw grid tie solar costs about $25k (-30% Fed Tax credit right now)
I think I'll stick with the Gen as an emergency backup system

Someday I'd like a solar grid-tie system
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Old 03-28-2010, 02:58 PM   #26
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You don't need 6000W of generation for backup power unless you want to stay up indefinitely.
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Old 03-28-2010, 03:03 PM   #27
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I have 4400w of electric heat that I can use if power is out
I used this recently for 3 days when main heat was out
Between that & fireplace heater I can keep my house at 68
6000w is not a lot of power when you add in a fridge (1000w?), freezer (800w?), sump pump (840w), cooking - hot plate 1500w & other needed items
When you could be without power for a week you plan for worst case
Here power most likely will be out in the winter, solar won't help as much then
Ever hear of the Blizzard of 78, New England ice storms, heck even in the recent heavy rain some people were without power for a week
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Old 03-28-2010, 06:36 PM   #28
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I'm in the process of acquiring a TED. They don't take AmEx . I am at a slight disadvantage as I only have one heat pump connected. Hope to have second one installed in a month. So I can calculate my peak Kw usage.

I think I seriously have something using power that I am not aware of. Shutting down the resistance heat only lowered my bill $70. But this is a tangent from original post...
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Old 03-29-2010, 01:13 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Scuba_Dave View Post
I have 4400w of electric heat that I can use if power is out
I used this recently for 3 days when main heat was out
Between that & fireplace heater I can keep my house at 68
6000w is not a lot of power when you add in a fridge (1000w?), freezer (800w?), sump pump (840w), cooking - hot plate 1500w & other needed items
When you could be without power for a week you plan for worst case
Here power most likely will be out in the winter, solar won't help as much then
Ever hear of the Blizzard of 78, New England ice storms, heck even in the recent heavy rain some people were without power for a week
Lets not forget those folks who live out in the country and are running a well pump and electric hot water heaters....6000W gets you enough for your pipes not to freeze in winter and that's about it. Totally agree with the gain to cost ratio on solar....it's just not cost effective enough yet to be used in mass amounts.
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Old 03-29-2010, 01:30 PM   #30
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Lets not forget those folks who live out in the country and are running a well pump and electric hot water heaters....6000W gets you enough for your pipes not to freeze in winter and that's about it. Totally agree with the gain to cost ratio on solar....it's just not cost effective enough yet to be used in mass amounts.
Bergey Power makes a hybrid system wind and solar but even with 30% tax credit its still $78,000 + towers & installation
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