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justfish

Generators

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So im curious what everyone's using for home backup. I'm revamping my whoooooole hurricane preparation. Elevating the house which will require some pretty extensive electrical so might as well start figuring out best way to power it when this happens again. 

I installed a manual transfer switch at old  house and used a 5500 watt gen. It was nice to just plug and play but not enough to power AC and really an overkill for just lights and appliances. Loud and thirsty using about 10 gal a day a lot of that just to run a fan or window unit at night.

Sold it and went with lil inverter gen below and have been super impressed. Used the heck out of it with saws and vacuum and powering lights and fans from storms without skipping a beat. Starts first pull every time and sips fuel.

But having extension cords everywhere is horrible. So I think I'm trying to land some where in the middle - stick with inverter gen  for quiet and fuel efficiency and find one with enough power to run window or portable Ac at night and a 30 amp plug for hooking to transfer switch so no cords everywhere. 

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I have a Yamaha 2000 watt for camping that weighs under 50#'s. If you want to stay with the invertor style maybe look at the champion 3100, it gets good reviews but is still under 100#'s and has wheels. Has more power when you need it but is still fairly compact.

Give the Campion 3100 a look see.

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http://www.homedepot.com/p/Duromax-XP12000EH-9-500-Watt-18-HP-Dual-Fuel-Powered-Portable-Hybrid-Gas-Propane-Generator-XP12000EH/300659728

 

i got one of these before Irma and it ran my upstairs and downstairs ac, 2 fridges plus my neighbors fridge, lights, tvs, hot water heater, etc.

We literally didn't miss a beat, it is loud though. I could go about 12-14 hrs on 8 gallons of gasoline. I haven't tried the propane on it yet but I was told it gets significantly longer run time.

I mainly have it for work so we will see about how long it lasts

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DIESEL, DIESEL, DIESEL!!!

My solution requires a little more cash up front but I will tell you the last thing we were worried about after Irma was when FPL is gonna get power back to my neck of the woods. In addition, there's nothing better than air conditioning, hot meal, and a hot shower after a day, or seven of hurricane clean-up and repairs.

I have a 15Kw powered by an Isuzu 2.6L diesel. The alternator (generator end of it) is actually rated at 17Kw @ 40 degrees C. Ran it for 171 hours straight (minus 20 minutes or so to change oil and filters) burned an average of 0.4 GPH running the whole house. The engine/alternator is designed to run at a constant 1800 RPM so it's not crazy loud and you can always find diesel fuel. The benefits in my eyes is that you're not depending on the propane distributor to deliver fuel, super simple to wire and operate and you don't have to bury or maintain a LP tank.  It's a little more work since you have to go get your own fuel but in my opinion its the only way to go, especially if you loose power for extended periods after these hurricanes like we do down here in the boonies. I go get 60 gallons of diesel in June and whatever I don't use I dump in the truck after the season is over.

 

 

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Jason, is this the model you have?:

http://www.centralmainediesel.com/order/Isuzu-15000-Watt-Diesel-Generator.asp?page=1500TS&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIpP6kwPnK1gIVBVqGCh1HBQqTEAQYASABEgIt5vD_BwE

Spec says 1.6L engine....

Where do you store the unit when not in use or do you have it mounted in a permanent enclosure on the side of your home? Did you add a breaker to your main power panel to link to the generator or is yours wired to automatically turn on when the power goes out??

I like the diesel generator idea a lot more than a gas generator but I can tell you that there was NO diesel fuel available anywhere near Pompano after Irma. My neighbors w/diesel trucks were driving around their wives rice rockets until power was restored in our area & diesel became available.

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3 hours ago, lurem said:

I have a Yamaha 2000 watt for camping that weighs under 50#'s. If you want to stay with the invertor style maybe look at the champion 3100, it gets good reviews but is still under 100#'s and has wheels. Has more power when you need it but is still fairly compact.

Give the Campion 3100 a look see.

That's prob what I'm gonna get or another like I have and parallel them. Honda also making a newer 2800watt one for a good price. I bet it's to compete with the champion since they are getting so popular in camping arena. 

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One thing I have learned with this whole Irma experience is that FPL electricity is cheap!  Now I can expect a price increase after writing that....

The generator discussion came up with my brothers and dad, sometimes less is more.  Seems like from my experience being caught in the middle is not really worth it, either go all out and power the whole house or stick to a small generator that sips fuel that'll get you by.  I used a 3kw for a few days and enjoyed the low fuel consumption and quiet engine.  I then switched over to a 6kw and was burning twice as much fuel and still didnt have the real creature comforts like whole home a/c or hot water showers and was running to the gas station every couple days, filling the generator up right before bed and early early the following morning.  I calculated 8 gallons of fuel a day on the 6kw.    

I'd love to go JasonP's route.  Thinking propane would be my first choice of fuel since I could pipe it to my grill, I have no secondary use for diesel fuel and shelf life would be a concern of mine, hate to see fuel go bad.

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5 hours ago, triplec said:

Don't be your normal ole cheap skate self. http://www.generac.com/for-homeowners/home-backup-power/build-your-generator

Its cheaper than you think now that you...like me...will not need to leave.

You must think I'm raising that house with bottle jacks. Ain't no $ left for that fanciness. Trying to keep it simple. Heck, Just having a house after a storm is gonna be a new luxury for us.  

 

That woulda flooded anyways. I need light so I can get it up high. 

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Justfish,

I can parallel mine with another just like it if need be (don't have one but have thought about it a couple times and I would need to purchase the cord to link them together). My thinking is if I need  more power I will have it with two but when I am out camping I can still use the single unit. Also, toting them around and loading and unloading in my vehicle will be easier. I can't see hauling a 5500-6500 watt floor model out to campsites and with the noise they make I may not make it out alive! haha (deliverance music playing in the background)

If you get dual ones and run them in parallel would you shoot me a PM and let me know the pros and cons> Like I said, I am on the fence about getting a second one of the same model.

 

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3 hours ago, conocean said:

Jason, is this the model you have?:

http://www.centralmainediesel.com/order/Isuzu-15000-Watt-Diesel-Generator.asp?page=1500TS&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIpP6kwPnK1gIVBVqGCh1HBQqTEAQYASABEgIt5vD_BwE

Spec says 1.6L engine....

Where do you store the unit when not in use or do you have it mounted in a permanent enclosure on the side of your home? Did you add a breaker to your main power panel to link to the generator or is yours wired to automatically turn on when the power goes out??

I like the diesel generator idea a lot more than a gas generator but I can tell you that there was NO diesel fuel available anywhere near Pompano after Irma. My neighbors w/diesel trucks were driving around their wives rice rockets until power was restored in our area & diesel became available.

Yeah that's it, man those things go up in price like $500 a year. I meant to type 1.6L, anywho, it's the business for sure.  I have a outlet on the wall for my welders so I basically back-feed the generator through a 60A 220V breaker in the panel via my welder outlet. The unit comes with wiring instructions so I basically made a cord (6/3) for the generator to plug into the wall. Super simple, I didn't want the thing cranking up every time the power goes off for a minute or two and I didn't want to add any components I didn't need so I avoided the whole automatic deal.

I built a stand for it so I can wheel it around and push it to the door threshold when I need to run it. It's 850 lbs but it moves relatively easy. My garage is detached so you really don't hear the thing running. The blue jugs are 15 Gallon deals, that's about as big as I want to move around, and I just drop the fuel line and return line into the jug and it's good. As far as availability I keep 60 gallons on hand as soon as Bubba starts worrying about the first storm of the year, which is roughly 6 days of running, down here it was always available, once the gas stations opened anyway.

As pointed out previously this whole master plan of mine revolves around having somewhere to put the leftover diesel in November, I can put it in the truck so it works great for me. There's all kinds of different info on how long diesel will last, and that has a lot to do with the environment its stored in, temperature, humidity, etc... I know for sure it burns fine in a 2005 Duramax after sitting for 5 months. Anything else your on your own.

 

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Jason....if you had the ability to connect a natural gas line easily at your home and avoid having to worry about tank maintenance or gas delivery, would you still lean towards the diesel generator or would you go with a natural gas generator? Just wondering what you think & why, thanks! 

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I bought a Honda 7500W.  Quiet as a mouse, push button start.  Runs 18 hours on 5 gallons of fuel.  Was going to use the old school back feed method (with a "suicide cord" plugged into the dryer receptacle), but decided to go with a Generac manual transfer switch.  Now we'll never have another hurricane.  

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3 hours ago, lurem said:

Justfish,

I can parallel mine with another just like it if need be (don't have one but have thought about it a couple times and I would need to purchase the cord to link them together). My thinking is if I need  more power I will have it with two but when I am out camping I can still use the single unit. Also, toting them around and loading and unloading in my vehicle will be easier. I can't see hauling a 5500-6500 watt floor model out to campsites and with the noise they make I may not make it out alive! haha (deliverance music playing in the background)

If you get dual ones and run them in parallel would you shoot me a PM and let me know the pros and cons> Like I said, I am on the fence about getting a second one of the same model.

 

Do it. Unless you have a lil circumstance like mine. You've already have a great unit. Having two will be that much more versatile. Use one when you just need little power, both when you need more or 30 amp connection. Plus you always have a backup.  Plus two are prob easier to carry than one!

Our county didn't give me the sweet early retirement  @triplec got so while he's gonna be sippin on hurricanes during one, I'll prob be working. So my wifey has to be able to operate this setup and I thinking she's gonna want something easier than two pull starts (even though it's usually first pull) Plus the champions stack so not best design for adding fuel to bottom, esp for her. I'm liking the 3100 for the electric start. Wireless remote even...

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I have a Generac 5500 that we picked up after Matthew last year, and backfeed. I am able to run the whole house almost as I normally would...Just turn the lights off when not in use and you should be okay. I have ran both refrigerators (your old one), two window unit and t.v., ceiling fans and so on, as needed. Even use the microwave and a skillet/griddle. I know it's not ideal, but it's a lot more ideal than a pissed off wife. 

Of course be mindful of your draw...at night we keep all the lights off and turn the fans off. Less load equals less fuel consumption, so I can take it easy on refills. I fill up at 10p and then again at 6:30a before I head to work. You can hang meat in my house in the mornings and it hasn't gotten above 74 during Matthew's outage or Irma's. We also have hot coffee, which the neighbors loved! Also, fill the Pathy up prior to storm arrival and you should have plenty of fuel for a week or so.

I like Jason's idea, but I just don't think I can justify the expense...but one more outage like we've had and the wife might make a power play. 

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Like the dual fuel idea. feel that propane tank storage would be safer than gas. Looking at a Duro Star 10,000's which advertise 20 hrs. run time on a tank of propane. 

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@BradM mandarin is bad about power. All the big oaks I guess.    We were out of power for 2 weeks for Charlie way back when those long lines at daily gas station trips got old quick.

 The propane option on some of these portables sounds cool for that reason.

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1 hour ago, justfish said:

@BradM mandarin is bad about power. All the big oaks I guess.    We were out of power for 2 weeks for Charlie way back when those long lines at daily gas station trips got old quick.

 The propane option on some of these portables sounds cool for that reason.

They're getting better about getting it back on, I guess. JEA rides by and always says "Mandarin is just the worst hit area in town." I can only imagine they mean worst pertaining to downed trees. It was bad this go around, but I don't think any worse than Matthew (in my specific area). We lost power at 9a the morning befor Irma...simple nor'easter did us in. 

How are you guys coming along? I can lend a hand, just need to know when is good so I can work around my wife's schedule. Kids, you know. 

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Got it gutted, Kinda a holding pattern now. Working with architect to get drawings for permit to lift it. Plan is second story height on piers so this won't ever happen again 

pretty much have to wait to get lifted to put it back together. I will need help a few days prior removing decks and stuff so will take you up on that. 

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19 hours ago, justfish said:

Got it gutted, Kinda a holding pattern now. Working with architect to get drawings for permit to lift it. Plan is second story height on piers so this won't ever happen again 

pretty much have to wait to get lifted to put it back together. I will need help a few days prior removing decks and stuff so will take you up on that. 

You're seriously going to lift it! That's a great idea and I hope it gets approved. Make it high enough to keep the boat under. Give me a heads up when you're ready for some help. Hang in there.  

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For all your that are doing a generator in the northern part of the country,think twice about a diesel generator .  I installed one in NY and had a terrible time getting it to function in the extreme cold,anything below 20 degrees.  I had a heater for the block ,used winterized additives for the fuel etc.  Finally had to put heater coils around the fuel lines from the tank.

Down south it would be a piece of cake and an excellent choice if you can't use gas or propane.  I loved mine in the summer months.LOL

 

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1 hour ago, BradM said:

You're seriously going to lift it! That's a great idea and I hope it gets approved. Make it high enough to keep the boat under. Give me a heads up when you're ready for some help. Hang in there.  

It will get approved. Insurance is pretty much making us by having a repetitive significant loss within 10 years. This is actually within a year. And we aren't alone ...I think you will see the look of Davis Shores change significantly in next few years. 

Might do a thread here on the process if guys aren't over seeing stuff about my house problems 

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