Portable Home Generator Questions

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If one of the gas stations on a corner opens for business because the owner/operator had the foresight to get a stand-by generator, the others would be following shortly without the force of "require".
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Again, I thank everyone for the various info and advice. One more clarification at this point....
I do have an oil tank that I use for heating, with K1 oil. It seems that someone one here said that you can burn k1 in a diesel, but that doesn't sound right to me.
Because of the limitations on storing gas, I am leaning toward a propane generator, but the diesel also sounds attractive...... it would be a strong choice if I could use the same k1 for my heat and generator.
Thanks
James
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My understanding is K1 is kerosene. A good friend uses K1 in his oil burning furnace in a pinch
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wrote:

I have not researched it, but maybe there is some confusion in the K1 kerosene and the # 1 fuel oil. Both have been used for home heating over the years, but not sure if there is a differance in the two or not.
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On Sun, 24 Jan 2010 15:16:45 -0500, "Ralph Mowery"

Kerosene has fewer lubricants (wax) than fuel oil. Fuel oil (residential) is basically standard diesel fuel that is not-road taxed. It runs diesel engines just fine.
Most users use a mix of kero and fuel oil... Kero has much less heat value than fuel oil, but for tanks that are outdoors there can be problems with straight fuel oil freezing. The mix prevents that.
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The use of K1 would depend on the diesel engine. Some can burn K1 -kerosene- some cannot. Can you burn #2 heating oil in your heater?
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You can use some heating oils in the generators. I think it is the home heating oil that has dye added to it so the trucks will not use the untaxed fuel. I usually get that back wards.
I don't recall how much you wanted to put in a system. There are some portable units that can cost a lot and some fixed units for the house that are not all that much more. You are going to spend about $ 2000 to $ 30000 for the fixed units for a 8 to 10 kw natural gas/propane units not counting the tanks and wiring. The portable units start around $ 500 to $ 1000 for the 5 kw gas units. I did see a Diesel portable unit for about $ 1400 rated at 5 kw.
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Please do some internet research, and make a few calls. I've used kerosene in a fuel oil furnace. Fuel oil and diesel are close enough to be interchangale, though not for on the road use.
--
Christopher A. Young
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In my area #2 heating oil IS #2 diesel. It's dyed red and is sold for off road use. The red dye indicates it is untaxed. Undyed fuel is sold for road use in cars and trucks; blue dyed fuel is sold for marine use.
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but of course, # 2 is not the same as #1, which is what I have.
James ---------------------------------------- In my area #2 heating oil IS #2 diesel. It's dyed red and is sold for off road use. The red dye indicates it is untaxed. Undyed fuel is sold for road use in cars and trucks; blue dyed fuel is sold for marine use.
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Just trying to provide some help. There may a diesel engine generator that can run on #1, as I already posted. I also asked if your heater could run on #2.
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No, my heater will only work with K1. They caution strongly against using any other type of fuel.
I will seek info from the maker to see if the diesel can run on #1. But, I am not finding many diesel type generators in my range of 8 kw.
James
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For the use you are going to see, you're probably best off with a gasoline powered generator. Weather doesn't sneak up on us these days, so you should have ample time to fill how many plastic 5 gallon jugs you think you need. I've got a 4.4Kw gas powered unit that gets used once or twice a year. I use "Stabil" in the fuel tank and the the engine starts easily by rope. The unit is light enough to transport to other homes, or a job site, if needed; something a diesel generator might not be.
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our last power outage was five days. I expect to need a minimum of 12 gallons a day. that would be 60 gallons/ a ten day outage (possible) would be 120 gallons. That isn't easy to store.....
James
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During a power out, it's wise to conserve energy use. You can't go on with your hair dryer, electric coffe late' maker and heated cuticle trimmer and vibra massage door mat outside the front door like nothing is wrong. Man, that is so yuppie. You have to make adjustments during emergencies.
Run the furnace, and a few lights. Turn off the TV and learn how to play scrabble, or other bored (spelling air intenshunnel) games with your family. Go visit folks, invite the nieghbors in for a hot drink and a bored game.
--
Christopher A. Young
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How many days were the roads and gas stations closed? And I very much doubt you'll need 12 gals a day.
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WTF are you doing that you need to run the generator for that long?
In an EMERGENCY, you don't need the air conditioner, sixteen computers, electric dryer, all the lights on. Your priorities should be preservation of the food supply, communication, and protecting the shelter. Basically, refrigerator, freezer, radio/TV, and a sump pump.
Hell you don't need anywhere near 8KW for that.
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On 1/26/2010 10:34 AM, snipped-for-privacy@rochester.rr.com wrote:

I have lurked on the sidelines and watched this thread progress and I must agree you don't NEED 8KW. However after experiencing several outages that stretched into the 10 day or longer periods it is certainly nice to have some creature comforts along about the 4th or fifth day. Running a generator at full load will shorten the life expectancy of the unit while running it at 50 percent load will allow the unit to operate longer with fewer repairs and use less fuel. It will also provide a cushion that allows you to be neighborly and keep others food from spoiling. By the next outage, they will probably have their own generator so they can enjoy a few creature comforts instead of merely existing. Then when yours goes down you can always walk over with a heavy duty extension cord over your shoulder and not feel guilty. Just my humble opinion from past experience.
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I have been fine with a 4k one. I can't run the central ac's but I can run both gas furnaces and the kitchen fridge and bar minifridge. I hardwire it to the house and we use the lights, microwave, hairdryers, computers, and other appliances just as we normally would. I do tell everyone not to leave lights on and to consider the fact that we're on the generator. Yoiu can hear it crank harder when the microwave or a hair dryer is usd but most ofthe time it's no where near full load. Typically 5 gal of gas lasts the whole day. I put in a whole house fan to compensate for the loss of ac.
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One time at a friend's, the electrician left his generator running while he was doing some wiring. They plugged in a coffee maker, you could really hear the engine work harder. I can run a window ac 10,000 BTU, on my 2500 watt generator.
--
Christopher A. Young
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