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Back up generator /Interlock kit

Old 07-19-2012, 12:33 PM
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Default Back up generator /Interlock kit

Thinking of one of these - I have a similar one to the B and S that is 6500 now - BS or Yammie/Rigid

any comments?

http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/...ctId=203183985

Also, isn't this system better than a transfer switch - so I can select whatever circuits I want - it seems wth the transfer wsitch I have to chose ahead of time what circuits I will want to use....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...JQkK6sVno&NR=1

PS I currently have no room in my 200 amp box for more circuits.....
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Old 07-19-2012, 01:02 PM
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get a whole house transfer switch , This way no need to select what you want to run. easy to hook up also
Mine is a Generac but everyone makes one .
Full line voltage in from geny and power company and 1 out to your panel that is existing.
WHen the power goes out the coil will lose power and drop the magnetic switch over to the geny.
When the power comes back on for 15 min it will unload the geny and put you back onto power company .
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Old 07-19-2012, 01:08 PM
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I have nearly the same gen (same wattage but Yamaha engine, also from HD) and I have a circuit in my panel box to back-feed the entire panel box (like that piece you linked). It might not be "correct" because I could back-feed to line unless I shut off the MAIN before powering the gen up but it works for me (just have to be real careful that you follow the proper steps).

In order to feed power back in you'll need 2 empty circuits to feed power to use this type of system. If you panel box is full you have ALOT of things drawing and that gen isn't going to power many of them.


BTW: I run 2 frigs, 4-5 lights, big TV, and one 2-ton AC unit off that gen. If I hit the microwave it pulls the load to about 90-95% of output so no microwave and AC at the same time anymore. (gen comes with a gauge to read % of output)
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Old 07-19-2012, 01:23 PM
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Originally Posted by docters oarders View Post
get a whole house transfer switch , This way no need to select what you want to run. easy to hook up also
Mine is a Generac but everyone makes one .
Full line voltage in from geny and power company and 1 out to your panel that is existing.
WHen the power goes out the coil will lose power and drop the magnetic switch over to the geny.
When the power comes back on for 15 min it will unload the geny and put you back onto power company .
This sounds like what I want

Originally Posted by t500hps View Post
I have nearly the same gen (same wattage but Yamaha engine, also from HD) and I have a circuit in my panel box to back-feed the entire panel box (like that piece you linked). It might not be "correct" because I could back-feed to line unless I shut off the MAIN before powering the gen up but it works for me (just have to be real careful that you follow the proper steps).

In order to feed power back in you'll need 2 empty circuits to feed power to use this type of system. If you panel box is full you have ALOT of things drawing and that gen isn't going to power many of them.


BTW: I run 2 frigs, 4-5 lights, big TV, and one 2-ton AC unit off that gen. If I hit the microwave it pulls the load to about 90-95% of output so no microwave and AC at the same time anymore. (gen comes with a gauge to read % of output)
Yea I hitnk I will go with the Yammi also - I have a hookup like you describe now with a small b and s unit that has worked fine for the last 2 hurricanes and snowstorms - but wanna get totally legal and an electric start so the wifey can do it.
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Old 07-19-2012, 01:43 PM
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I do not believe the interlock kits are acceptable in all jurisdictions. One local permit office objected because it only disconnects one leg although the preferred transfer switch they suggested similarly only disconnected one leg.

If I remodel or build again, I will have a fused disconnect between the meter and the panel.

Originally Posted by LI Sound Grunt View Post

This sounds like what I want
If you want to use a few select circuits then this would work http://gen-tran.com/eshop/transfer-s...s-prewired.asp

A dedicated inlet box outside where you typically run the generator helps keep the extension cords short and out of the house like this http://gen-tran.com/eshop/power-inle...egory=Metallic

Or power the entire panel with this http://gen-tran.com/eshop/10Expand.a...ductCode=R5020

Last edited by bsmit24; 07-19-2012 at 01:55 PM.
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Old 07-19-2012, 02:31 PM
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@bsmit24

I use a transfer switch for my furnace. Everything else I run a cord. I have two more "on the shelf." One is going into my daughter's house when they finish upgrading the plumbing and heating. I haven't decided on where the last one will go, maybe the living room so the ol' lady can watch the bachelor and leave me in peace.
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Old 07-19-2012, 02:54 PM
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Originally Posted by bsmit24 View Post
I do not believe the interlock kits are acceptable in all jurisdictions. One local permit office objected because it only disconnects one leg although the preferred transfer switch they suggested similarly only disconnected one leg.

If I remodel or build again, I will have a fused disconnect between the meter and the panel.



If you want to use a few select circuits then this would work [URL]http://gen-tran.com/eshop/transfer-switches-prewired.asp[/URL]
A dedicated inlet box outside where you typically run the generator helps keep the extension cords short and out of the house like this http://gen-tran.com/eshop/power-inle...egory=Metallic

Or power the entire panel with this http://gen-tran.com/eshop/10Expand.a...ductCode=R5020
x2 have one of these and is great.
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Old 07-19-2012, 03:02 PM
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Reposting from the other generator thread. The more I look at the various transfer switches, inlet boxes, etc, the better this looks. ESPECIALLY if you're thinking it is something your wife or someone else would have to use, or if you're going to pay an electrician to come install. For $800ish it also includes a 20 or 40' cable and they also sell a version with a whole house surge arrestor built in. IMO all of this stuff makes sense to be installed at the meter can, and that's 100% non-disruptive to your existing box etc.

You can buy direct from the company or I believe northern tool also sells them. (although when I had checked a year or so back, direct from the co was very reasonable)

-----------------------------

FYI in Broward and miami-dade, FPL sells a meter can transfer switch for ~$800 installed under the name 'one plug.' It only handles a max load of 30 amps (the company who builds them www.generlink.com also has a 40 amp version) but it is plug and play and energizes your whole home. It should be about a 10 minute install.

It is certainly more expensive than a DIY solution but probably cheaper than paying an electrician to come and install a 'regular' transfer switch which might only give you a handful of circuits.

I haven't gotten around to buying one but probably will, it falls into the 'why didn't I think of that' category.
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Old 07-19-2012, 03:33 PM
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Flot, it is just a personal opinion but if the generator is not large enough to power the entire house, and this goes for some of the other methods also, an inexperienced homeowner could easily overload a generator and or damage appliances in the home since it does not restrict which circuits are available or not.
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Old 07-19-2012, 03:45 PM
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Originally Posted by bsmit24 View Post
Flot, it is just a personal opinion but if the generator is not large enough to power the entire house, and this goes for some of the other methods also, an inexperienced homeowner could easily overload a generator and or damage appliances in the home since it does not restrict which circuits are available or not.
That's unlikely. Not only does the generator have a circuit breaker, the device I linked to above does as well. In the event of an overload, either the device or the generator's circuit breaker (or both) would trip.

Having lived 2-3 weeks without power on a portable generator, first with extension cords and later with an inlet box - I can't tell you how good it felt to be able to turn on the hot water heater. My 8k/10k unit would even start and run my 2.5 ton central air, although the generator didn't sound like it enjoyed that very much.

I don't know why anyone would want a transfer switch that only powers on a handful of circuits. Let me tell you how much fun it was dragging a light and an extension cord into the bathroom at night...
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Old 07-19-2012, 03:57 PM
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If your circuit breaker panel is a model that is compatible with the InterLock Kit, and you have 2 open spaces for the gen breaker, get it

It is simply the best method of connecting a portable generator to a home's electrical system

The only negative is the cost

Both phases are disconnected when either the Utility power or Gen power is disconnected
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Old 07-19-2012, 04:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Flot View Post

That's unlikely. Not only does the generator have a circuit breaker, the device I linked to above does as well. In the event of an overload, either the device or the generator's circuit breaker (or both) would trip.
I was thinking more along the lines of something like the a/c trying to startup and the generator being marginally undersized. The generator circuit breaker should trip but the main circuit breaker would not.

Originally Posted by Flot View Post

I don't know why anyone would want a transfer switch that only powers on a handful of circuits. Let me tell you how much fun it was dragging a light and an extension cord into the bathroom at night...
It would take a little planning and fore thought to make sure the 10 or so circuits you are powering provide for the necessities.
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Old 07-19-2012, 04:53 PM
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Regarding the a/c kicking on. Put a time delay relay in the a/c circuit and set at about 5 minutes. This will give everything else time to get started and the pressure in the a/c to lower. I have a Kohler Standby with 4cyl GM water cooled engine. This a/c fix is perfect I have a 5 ton air conditioner.
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Old 07-20-2012, 01:11 AM
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Great input


We are very frugal with what we use during generator use already (current (old) system is backfeed into a 50 amp garage heater circuit) and only leave the refridgerators on all the time - we turn the boiler emergency switch on and water pump switch on only when needed (both conveniently located ) so we don't have any chance of overloading generator - so the whole house thing will be fine for us. There are no kids that are gonna try to cook or run the ac or anything. If I did have ahot day summer problem we would probably just run one room air and make sure the water and boiler were off - I made up an an amp demand chart on the wall so even my wife knows when we are closing in on 30 or 45 for this new generator)

Greta info I am gonna look into these Great comments and experiences here.
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