Emergency power system for one perosn: Generator or battery system?

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Twayne wrote:

Instead of a transfer switch, you can just drag a couple of heavy-duty extension cords with triple taps around (plug your light-duty cords into that). It work pretty well, actually.
Bob
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Yes, that will work as described for anything with a plug. In fact it's how I handled it until I could get the transfer switch installed. Can't close the doors or windows the cords come in thru though, and often exposes an opening for CO to come in. A CO detector would help there. Quite a nuisance if you had to do it very often as we do areund here, but perfectly workable if it's OK with the user.
Twayne
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If you do not install a transfer switch, then make absolutely sure that you disconnect the main breaker before powering up your generator system. If you don't do this you really can seriously injure/kill a lineman with the electricity that can be fed back out to the line.
Any utility I have ever dealt with required a transfer switch for a home generator.
EJ in NJ
Twayne wrote:

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On Sun, 21 Dec 2008 09:54:05 -0500, "Twayne"

Or do what I've done. I have an old 2500 watt Onan and I have the furnace set up that I can plug it in to either the mains or an extension cord from the generator. I run a 14 gauge cord from the generator (out in the shed) into the house and plug the furnace in to get the house warm, along with a couple of lamps. Then I disconnect the furnace and run the fridge for a while if necessary. I can plug in whatever I need to run when I need it, and in that way I can limit my loads to 2500 watts. Obviously the kitchen range and the drier cannot be used. My hot water heater is gas, as is the furnace.
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I did that once and only once! Had just bought the generator fortunately, but ... wouldn't you know, we were without power for 6 days that January? Determined to get the stupid switch installed after that, I'll tell ya what! <g>. Of course, we haven't had another one that bad since 1998, but ... now at least I can just plug in the house & flip the right breakers. It'll run the well pump when we need it but not much else, but that's OK; at least it's just switches on the txfr switch.
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On Dec 20, 3:28 pm, snipped-for-privacy@privacy.net wrote:

1.5 Hp engine, It will run refrigerator or freezer and enough extra for a light or two. Also good enough for a hot plate.. So something in that line I would suggest.
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snipped-for-privacy@privacy.net wrote:

In addition to the other suggestions, you might consider a 12-120 Volt inverter (and long extension cord) you can run off your car's electrical system. What with gasoline being so cheap these days, and inverter may be reasonable insurance.
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wrote:

alternator will burn out in about 1/2 hour at 100 amps - (most others are not much better) - and the car will burn more gas producing that 1200 watts than a 5000 watt unit will at full load.
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snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Yeah, but gas is cheap - and getting cheaper! Since Bush rescinded the executive ban on off-shore drilling back on June 15th, the price of oil has dropped by 2/3rds.
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wrote:

your banks, and the financial meltdown.
Regardless of the price, wasting fuel is insane.
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There is the convenience factor with cars. Big gas tank, relatively to generator. And you can gas up your car if you can find a station which is dispensing. Easier than lugging 5 galon gascans around.
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Yeah, if you can only find a way around the stupid anti-siphon crap! I don't like pulling a gas line & running the fuel pump to get gas out of it. Did it once, but ... still don't like it.
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On Wed, 24 Dec 2008 21:12:21 -0500, "Twayne"

threads onto the schrader valve on the injection log (the fitting for testing fuel pressure). put the hose on and into your gas can, and start the car. It will idle, but you won't rev it very high -The fuel pump will fill your can.
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On Dec 22, 1:44pm, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

An inverter I would be scared to use more than 5-10 minutes and not even full load. At idle it wont do anything to help.
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well gee, check the amp specs of a modern vehicles alternator, likely over 200 amps.
alternators must be designed to charge a dead battery to full charge, so they must be rugged, espically when you drive around on a bad battery for weeks before it finally dies
a 1000 watt inverter isnt a big load. lots RVers use them constantly. they arent dangerous
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On Tue, 23 Dec 2008 08:20:12 -0800 (PST), " snipped-for-privacy@aol.com"

That is where you are wrong. The alternator is NOT designed to charge a dead battery. It should be - but in most cases it is not.
The bad battery you speak of does not usually TAKE a full charge anyway. The 135 amp unit used on virtually every GM truck, as well an most cars from '88 to '95 (and possibly other years as well) was well known for oveheating when asked to produce more than about 65 amps - to the point there was a large aftermarket business installing modified "cool case" conversions. The alternator is NOT built to produce anywhere near full output on a steady basis..

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On Dec 23, 1:17�pm, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

todays alternators are usually rated around 200 amps
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Ratings, how about size and no cooling. I have little RC motors that take 30a but will fry an egg and ment the windings. Have you looked at the size of this stuff, wake up man output is windings, you make 1-200 a out of a gen that is 1/5 the size of old stuff that used to last 200000 miles, and it is just logic it runs real hot with no air or even air. Then aftermarket is there in alternators since these million watt stereos blow them out.
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nearly all electronics today are smaller, with higher output. I have used my 1000 watt inverter many times, without a problem.
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On Thu, 25 Dec 2008 05:43:10 -0800 (PST), " snipped-for-privacy@aol.com"

The 1000 watt inverter itself draws very little.. You could run it 'till the cows come home. Load it to 1000 watts, so it draws 80 amps and a 130 amp alternator (particularly the little GM job will be at it's limit. And it won't be putting out even 80 amps at idle.
The fact is, using the automotive alternator, running your car engine for emergency power is NOT an efficientor effective way to do things.
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