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So Sandy has me thinking of a generator but not for me, for my dad. I don't know anything about generators except that they run on gas and make electricity.

What kind of output should I be looking for to run a fridge, TV, computer and a couple of lights.

What would it take to run the heating/ac system?
 

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Electronics are a no no. We have a 5000, 6500 surge unit. Runs the well pump, oil hot water heater, fridge, and some lights. Charging phones with a deep cell battery bank. Just don't run it in the house or in an attached garage unless you want to power nap for a long time.
 

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All I know is buy a Honda or Yamaha and keep stabil in the tank for storage...to hell with those big-ass loud monsters. Wouldn't spend a dime on one.
 

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We have a 120v 2000 watt honda. Runs quiet & forever.

We can run all the home essentials on it. Lights, internet, tv, fridge, & sump pump.

I shut off the main & 'backfeed' it by plugging the genny into the backyard outlet. I have the electrical pannel breakers configured so the essential circuits above are all on the same leg (every other breaker, going down).

My neighbor has a 220v 5000 watt Generac. It's noisy as hell. We backfeed it into the pannel via the 220v line in his garage. It runs everything, even the central air.

The honda was $1K. The generac was $800.

They are both portable. The honda is very portable. The size of a small cooler & relatively easy to carry.




cell post
 

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Are we talking permanent style or portable? I have a monster Yamaha one that had 3 houses running fridges, fans and lights during our last hurricane ordeal.
 

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Since we are on the generator topic, I came across a generator at Costco and would like to know if anyone has any experience with it. It is made by Smarter tools and uses a Yamaha engine. The sound level on its eco mode is 51db and at $600 at Costco it seems like a good deal. I could buy 2 of these and run them together from the price of a name brand unit. Here is a youtube link to it. Smarter Tools Yamaha AP2000i Generator Sound Level - YouTube

I would be using these for camping mostly. It seems like a good deal to me so far.
 

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Have a 2 stroke 1000 watt for the small shit, fairly quiet

3250 watt runs camper AC but has real small fuel tank

5000 watt with bigger tank for all nighters in camper plus have cord to backfeed house... yeah it's noisy but garage is 60 feet from house


Want a honda 6500 alternator type(real quiet) but the $$$ is outa my range
 

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This site has a lot of good info about generators, though his recommendations on generator size are grossly underestimated. http://www.generatorjoe.net/page.asp?id=20

I used a 2000W inverter-design generator in the past to power essential circuits in my home, but it required me to actively manage what circuits got power when.

The 4500W generator I have now easily runs all the essentials without having to worry about switching circuits on-and-off to avoid overload.

If you have to deal with electric heat, hot water, oven or air conditioning you will need a larger generator. But larger generators burn more fuel per watt produced than smaller.

Electric start generators are nice, but if you don't maintain the battery on a trickle-charger they are no more convenient than a recoil-start-only generator and a lot more expensive.

If you have natural gas and can afford a permanently-installed standby generator, that is the cheapest fuel to burn and requires the least amount of maintenance. Propane is also easier to maintain than gasoline (or diesel) but no less expensive (at today's prices); but if you already have a 500+ pound propane tank it might be worth considering. Diesel fuel is a little less expensive than gasoline, but it doesn't balance out the higher cost of the diesel generator unless you use it a lot.

Inverter-based generators such as available from Honda, Yamaha, Hyundai and a slew of Chinese clones of Honda are safer for electronics, quieter and more fuel-efficient. However most modern generators are well regulated, and most modern electronics are tolerant of less than ideal power supplies. I have a shit-load of electronics at home including a full electronics design/build/repair bench and have never had anything balk at the juice my $300/4500W generator puts out.

If you want to wire the generator into your home electrical system the generator will need to have a 220V receptacle. You will also need the correct 220V locking MALE receptacle, generator power cord and either a transfer switch or mechanical main/generator interlock device. Backfeeding your load center via a drier or oven outlet is very dangerous and should not be done.
 

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Unfortunately that price doesn't include the storage batteries, and 310W works out to be around 2.6AHr; not enough to run a refrigerator or furnace. 310W would let you run a laptop, Internet router, cell phone and a few compact florescent lights, and only when the Sun was shining. At night time you'd be burning candles along with the rest of the have nots.

If you've already done the roof solar panel deal, for a couple of grand you can have storage batteries, charger and transfer switches installed so you can actually run your home off solar during a black-out. Lots of folks who installed solar were very unpleasantly surprised when they couldn't use that $15K worth of panels to even recharge their cell phone.
 

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Unfortunately that price doesn't include the storage batteries, and 310W works out to be around 2.6AHr; not enough to run a refrigerator or furnace. 310W would let you run a laptop, Internet router, cell phone and a few compact florescent lights, and only when the Sun was shining. At night time you'd be burning candles along with the rest of the have nots.

If you've already done the roof solar panel deal, for a couple of grand you can have storage batteries, charger and transfer switches installed so you can actually run your home off solar during a black-out. Lots of folks who installed solar were very unpleasantly surprised when they couldn't use that $15K worth of panels to even recharge their cell phone.
Gotta read a little deeper. The 310W value is in panel wattage. The actual output in 2000w using a sine wave inverter and your battery bank. Just enough to run essential loads like a chest freezer or fridge and lighting. All without gasoline, mind you. Lower wattage is the trade off, but, it can be expanded.

The kit suggests storage batteries with a minimum of 400ah. That would be sufficient for more than a laptop.
 
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