emergency power

emergency power

PostBy: wilder11354 On: Tue Dec 25, 2012 7:42 pm

i been putting it off for way to long. Was luckly last winter power never went out, but i am not taking too many chances anymore. Got a Generac 5500W/6875w surge portable generator. Picking up a manual transfer switch this coming weekend at lowes to wire in generator to main service panel circuits i want for emergency power. Been checking circuits in house, wattages or amps for everything that i'd like to have on backup. Biggest load is frig, and microwave same circuit. But that is ok, can use either one while others not running. Coal boiler and oil boiler will be on another circuit. Common circuit because zone controls power thru oil boiler circiut, and power for both is not a lot to have on same circuit. Other than that its TV/cable, and lights in LR, bedroom, and bathroom. Water will still be bottled, & jug stored. No well, share son in laws and not able to hook it in because of logistics. better to be warm and comfy than to be cold and grumpy.
wilder11354
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Harman SF260
Coal Size/Type: nut or pea, anthracite
Other Heating: crown oil boiler, backup.if needed

Re: emergency power

PostBy: Lightning On: Tue Dec 25, 2012 10:30 pm

There is an easier way to wire a generator in. I back feed mine into the breaker box thru a 220v breaker. You can too, if your generator has a 220v out on it, which it most likely does. There are many benefits to doing it this way. The most obvious is that you can select what circuits you want to power by just turning the breaker on for it. This thread I linked below has more information about the procedure for flipping switches. Some may dispute my suggestion, but many others are comfortable with this technique 8-)

Generators
Lightning
 
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Clayton 1537G
Coal Size/Type: Nut/Stove Size Mix

Re: emergency power

PostBy: grumpy On: Tue Dec 25, 2012 11:18 pm

I would go with the interlock way, then just manage your power, with 40 amps to work with and no well you will be fine.
grumpy
 

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Re: emergency power

PostBy: Rick 386 On: Wed Dec 26, 2012 12:01 am

grumpy wrote:I would go with the interlock way, then just manage your power, with 40 amps to work with and no well you will be fine.



Yep what he said !!!!


We are waiting for the electrician to get the switch and do this to my dad's house. He's running 2 old Alaska Stokers. 1 is a fireplace insert in the basement and the other is a freestanding unit on the first floor. He also has a well and water treatment system.

Using the interlock breaker will allow him to selectively power what ever he wants or needs at the time.




Rick
Rick 386
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: AA 260 heating both sides of twin farmhouse
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: LL Hyfire II w/ coaltrol in garage
Coal Size/Type: Pea in AA 260, Rice in LL Hyfire II
Other Heating: Gas fired infared at work

Re: emergency power

PostBy: Boots On: Wed Dec 26, 2012 12:34 pm

you have to be careful backfeeding through your panel. if you do not turn off your main you could end up eletricuting a lineman. also you could damage something if the power comes back on while the generator is still running.
Boots
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Keystoker KA-6
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Burnham SFB 101 (sold)

Re: emergency power

PostBy: Lightning On: Wed Dec 26, 2012 12:36 pm

Boots wrote:you have to be careful backfeeding through your panel. if you do not turn off your main you could end up eletricuting a lineman. also you could damage something if the power comes back on while the generator is still running.


1. Turn OFF the MAIN breaker to the house (most important)
2. Turn OFF all breakers in the box
3. Start the generator
4. Turn on the breaker the generator is back feeding thru
5. Turn on the breakers in the house you want power to (be selective not to over burden the generator)

Its most imperative the Main breaker to the house is OFF while the Generator breaker is ON.
Lightning
 
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Clayton 1537G
Coal Size/Type: Nut/Stove Size Mix

Re: emergency power

PostBy: I'm On Fire On: Wed Dec 26, 2012 1:18 pm

Or, you could just do it the right way and buy the manual switch then pick what things you want on the generator and move them over to the newly installed sub-panel that is ONLY for the generator and what is on it.

C'mon, yeah, I know...back-feeding is so much easier. Also much more dangerous. It's also easier to "forget" to shut the main off. If you have a dedicated generator panel like the OP is planning it's already got a built in interlock. Not to mention it's also easier to be tempted to overload the generator with, "One more circuit".

One 30 amp breaker gets installed in the main service panel, 10/3 gets run to the "MAIN FEED" breaker in the generator panel. Then the generator outlet gets wired to another 30 amp breaker labeled "GENERATOR" with some more 10/3 and then the interlock gets installed across the "MAIN FEED" and "GENERATOR" breaker and viola...when you want generator power you just flip the "GENERATOR" breaker on and the "MAIN FEED" automatically flips to off.

That's how mine is wired and I've got:

Well Pump
Oil Furnace (which doesn't get used EVER and is generally in the "OFF" position)
Septic Pump
Fridge
TV
Computer (Not Always on it)
Internet (Not Always on it)
Living Room Lights
Bathroom Lights
Bathroom Heater
Stove Draft Inducer

It's just too easy to damage something by back feeding the main service panel.
I'm On Fire
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machines DS-1600 Hot Air Circulator

Re: emergency power

PostBy: Lightning On: Wed Dec 26, 2012 1:25 pm

I'm On Fire wrote:It's just too easy to damage something by back feeding the main service panel.


T'aint Skeert :P - just keep the female unit out of it :woot:
Lightning
 
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Clayton 1537G
Coal Size/Type: Nut/Stove Size Mix

Re: emergency power

PostBy: I'm On Fire On: Wed Dec 26, 2012 1:30 pm

Lightning wrote:
I'm On Fire wrote:It's just too easy to damage something by back feeding the main service panel.


T'aint Skeert :P - just keep the female unit out of it :woot:


LOL....hell my wife has to call me every time to and asks how start the generator and how hook it up to the dedicated panel. And now that I've got a propane kit on it there's a whole 'nother phone call on how to turn the generator on when using propane.

'Nao I has to hook up the hose to the tank, turn the tank on, push the propane primer AND hold the start button on the generator at the SAME time? WUT!?!?!?'
I'm On Fire
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: DS Machines DS-1600 Hot Air Circulator

Re: emergency power

PostBy: Lightning On: Wed Dec 26, 2012 1:38 pm

YIKES!
I'll be on watch for a mushroom cloud looming over the horizon in that general direction!
Or at least something like this... bop2
Lightning
 
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: Clayton 1537G
Coal Size/Type: Nut/Stove Size Mix

Re: emergency power

PostBy: Yanche On: Wed Dec 26, 2012 2:27 pm

I prefer back feeding to the main circuit breaker panel, WITH mechanical lockout so only the main disconnect OR the generator back feed breaker can be on. AND I like an independent whole service disconnect switch between the meter and the main panel. Mechanical back feed interlocks are available for most brands of panels, and are electrical code recognized. I DO NOT like automatic transfer switches, at lease the kind a homeowner could afford. When you are running on a generator and the utility power comes on, there is a possibility of double voltage transient if the phasing is just right between your generator and the utility company's power. That's why I prefer a second whole service disconnect. Between it and the service panel I put an alarm that tells me when utility power has been restored. Then I can turn the generator off, wait for all inductive and capacitive loads to dissipate, and then make the connection to utility power. Much safer.
Yanche
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Alternate Heating Systems S-130
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Pea

Re: emergency power

PostBy: KaptJaq On: Wed Dec 26, 2012 11:38 pm

There are interlock kits that will force you to shut the main breaker before you can turn on the "backfeed" generator breaker. Take a look at this site:

http://www.interlockkit.com/?gclid=CLr- ... 4Aod9h4AxQ

There are a number of other sources also. It requires that you put the generator "backfeed" breaker just below the main. Specify which panel you have and they make up the manual interlock.

generatorbackfeed.gif
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KaptJaq
KaptJaq
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Godin 3721 Le Grand Rond
Coal Size/Type: Anthracite Nut

Re: emergency power

PostBy: grumpy On: Wed Dec 26, 2012 11:41 pm

KaptJaq wrote:There are interlock kits that will force you to shut the main breaker before you can turn on the "backfeed" generator breaker. Take a look at this site:

http://www.interlockkit.com/?gclid=CLr- ... 4Aod9h4AxQ

There are a number of other sources also. It requires that you put the generator "backfeed" breaker just below the main. Specify which panel you have and they make up the manual interlock.

generatorbackfeed.gif


KaptJaq



Yes, good to play it safe..
grumpy
 

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