Under "normal conditions", dicking around with your electric meter
would be presumed to be in aid of bypassing the meter. Especially
with the profusion of Grow Ops. I'd presume it's still illegal in
those places where it ever was illegal, or at least a possible invitation
to get the police to tear your house apart.
However, a power company is going to look pretty stupid prosecuting
people for asking for the meter to be reinstalled/resealed after a
power failure took out the whole _state_.
I've seen power companies _themselves_ say "you gotta
do what you gotta do, be damn careful, and we'll reconnect it for
you later no charge" in less dire situations.
[One example being finishing off a panel switchover that just
happened to collide with a power company strike, and they couldn't
supply anybody to move the feed.]
If in doubt, and to be on the safe side, I'd ask the power company.
If you can get through...
Of the generator connections we "inspected", by far the biggest
one was the one we made ourselves. Most of the generator setups
were portable 3-6Kw rigs. We were asked to install one for the
township in the "garage".
Thinking it's a little dinky <10Kw unit to go into a "garage",
the garage turned out to be the "public works installation".
Think: highway service depot. With a 200A service.
I'm having a smoke waiting for the generator, and this
70' tractor trailer pulls up with this enormous "thing" on it.
"Whassat?" I ask stupidly. "Your generator" was the reply.
The "thing" was a soil screener with a 200Kw 600V 3 phase generator.
Fortunately, the guy driving it knew how to connect it to a
transformer he had with him to drive 220V single phase ("sorry,
the transformer is only 75Kw". "So what? This whole building
can only take 40Kw!").
As I recall, we disconnected the output of the main disconnect,
taped off all the wire ends, and secured them safely.
Then spliced the 4-ought feeder cable directly into the input
of the 200A mains breaker.
[Spent about two hours doing a 15 minute job just to make
certain we (a) knew what we were doing before we did it,
(b) tested everything every step of the way and (c) made
the result as safe as we possibly could.]
We were surrounded by township workers, police and the military.
Instead of getting shot at, we got quite a round of cheering
when the whole place lit up, and they didn't have to dig road
salt and pump fuel by hand anymore. Not to mention being
warm and being able to get water.
That generator ran for over 3 weeks.
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It's not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
Thanks, Cris and the others for confirming what I strongly suspected
when I made the OP on this thread.
I'm going to tell my friend all the reasons reasons he should get that
setup changed over to use a transfer switch system of whatever size is
required for him to power up as many circuits he feels necessary to have
during a power outage, within the limits of the 7.5 KW genny he now
owns. That should be big enough to handle his well pump, a few lights,
and the refrigerator.
My friend has relied on me for technical advice for over thirty years
now, as I have on his medical knowledge and skills, which has included
his patching up my body and bones more than once.<G>
I know he can easily afford to get the job redone right so that his
family can enjoy their well earned retirement with peace of mind.
I was a little suprised that the "owners committee" in the gated
community he chose to build in didn't have rules about such things
already in place. I guess they are just a bunch of well to do
non-techies who know just enough to fret about and bug the property
owners over things like roof shingles looking faded and the necessity
for frequent grooming of their shrubs.<G>
Thanks again guys,
My name is Jeff Wisnia and I approved this message....
Check and tell me what brand of electrical panel your friend has. If it
is SquareD with an M1 or M2 main breaker they make an interlock for it
so that all that would need to be done to make it reasonably safe is to
install the interlock kit and change the dryer outlet to a flanged inlet
of the same configuration as the generators largest 240 volt outlet.
One hour and one hundred dollars will make the whole thing US NEC
compliant and reasonably safe.
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