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#574917 - 02/18/21 11:47 AM Home Backup Generator  
Joined: Jan 2003
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Justification Online content
Admiral
Justification  Online Content
Admiral

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,981
Fruit Heights, Utah
With all the power outages due to the storms in Texas I figured it's time to finally get that emergency backup generator for our house.
Had the landscaping redone last summer and while adding power to a shed I had the electrician add a 40 amp hookup where I could plug in a portable generator for when the power goes out.
Not wanting or being able to install a full blown top of the line self starting dual fuel mega generator, just something that can power the essentials for a day or two.
We average about 2000 KW per month year round, with peak average usage during the summer of 3100KW. The highest usage over 20 years in the house was 3726KW in the heat of the summer, with two Air Conditioners, 4 fridges/freezers, 2 icemakers and multiple computers being left on.
Since we're just looking at powering the essentials, (with gas heat in the winter) how big should we go?
Brands you've had luck with?
Portable so we can take it with us while working on the Kalispell property


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#574918 - 02/18/21 02:49 PM Re: Home Backup Generator [Re: Justification]  
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MarkHB Offline
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Admiral

Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 7,338
Norris Lake, TN
I am currently adding a 22Kw Generac generator. It will power the whole house. I am waiting on th gas company to install their line and 500 gallon tank. (I intend to convert the heater and stoves to gas once they break. Once the gas line is in the electricians will install a Transfer Switch so I don't feed the grid. It will start automatically and transfer the power. I want this so if we are out of town the house will be fine in the winter. It will have Wi-Fi monitoring so I can see it on my phone and get alerts. I also had an oil heater and battery heater installed,

The cost of the generator, installation, all up $13k.

Our whole house is electric.


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#574920 - 02/18/21 05:37 PM Re: Home Backup Generator [Re: Justification]  
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WayWeGo Offline
Admiral
WayWeGo  Offline
Admiral

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Oakton, VA
I have a 10KW (8KW sustained) portable Rigid gas generator I bought a few years ago that powers just about everything at my house (350A service panel) except the AC. It actually has enough power to run the AC but can't handle the inrush surge when the AC compressor starts. I might be able to get around this with a slow start capacitor on the AC, but except for a very hot week when we lost power to a major storm, most of our outages are in the winter or just for a day or two. Our furnace, water heater and stove are gas, so we don't need much power to run them.

It does use a lot of gas, so when running it for multiple days, I have to go to the gas station every day.

While it is a portable unit, I need help lifting it into my truck as it weighs over 250lbs. It has a 14HP Subaru (formally Wisconsin Robin) engine, though I understand Subaru sold this business off to Yamaha a few years ago.

Hope this helps!


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#574921 - 02/18/21 06:17 PM Re: Home Backup Generator [Re: Justification]  
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MarkHB Offline
Dressed for dinner
MarkHB  Offline
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Admiral

Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 7,338
Norris Lake, TN
The Generac I bought has a load connection so when the generator cuts in the AC/Heat pump is delayed for a few seconds until everything else is running. The way to avoid power blackouts is to get a generator and you will neve have to use it.

One of the main reasons for me was as my wife and I get older I do not want to deal with starting a portable etc and when I am out of town my wife will be fine. She wont freeze to death.

Last edited by MarkHB; 02/18/21 06:19 PM.

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#574922 - 02/18/21 08:36 PM Re: Home Backup Generator [Re: Justification]  
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captkevin Offline
Admiral
captkevin  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Oct 2003
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Chicago, IL
Generac definitely seems to have the market wrapped up


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#574923 - 02/19/21 10:11 AM Re: Home Backup Generator [Re: Justification]  
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MarkHB Offline
Dressed for dinner
MarkHB  Offline
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Admiral

Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 7,338
Norris Lake, TN
I forgot to mention ask what the lead time is for the generator to be onsite. One local company in town said there was a 12 week backlog for generators from Generac. This was in December. The company I went with out of Nth Carolina said said it would be delivered onsite in 6 to 10 days. They are supposidly Generacs biggest customer and carry them in stock. I found them through Home Depot.

Last edited by MarkHB; 02/19/21 10:11 AM.

24' Monterey Explorer
Honda PWC
http://www.picturetrail.com/markhb

Golf!! Waste of a good gun range.
#574924 - 02/19/21 01:00 PM Re: Home Backup Generator [Re: Justification]  
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captkevin Offline
Admiral
captkevin  Offline
Admiral

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Chicago, IL
Costco has a nice Generac on sale in todays ad


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#574935 - 02/22/21 09:45 AM Re: Home Backup Generator [Re: Justification]  
Joined: Jan 2003
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Justification Online content
Admiral
Justification  Online Content
Admiral

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,981
Fruit Heights, Utah
While I would love to get a dedicated full blown backup system, the priority for spending over $13,000 would be improvements on the new property instead of the suburban property we live in.
I've got to plan on using the Backup generator as a bandaid, keep the basics running while here, but one we can take to the property and use as a power source while working there.

The only thing I know about Generac is that they are advertised heavily on CNBC during episodes of American Greed during the commercial breaks when copper-fit or testosterone supplements are not being advertised.
The Costco site does have a portable Generac listed with an overall 4 start rating, the numerous 1 star ratings have me more than a bit hesitant.


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#574936 - 02/22/21 10:07 AM Re: Home Backup Generator [Re: Justification]  
Joined: Sep 2003
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MarkHB Offline
Dressed for dinner
MarkHB  Offline
Dressed for dinner
Admiral

Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 7,338
Norris Lake, TN
Portables I like are the Honda. and I have heard good reports on the Harbor Freight ones.


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Golf!! Waste of a good gun range.
#574939 - 02/23/21 07:46 AM Re: Home Backup Generator [Re: Justification]  
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captkevin Offline
Admiral
captkevin  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 8,053
Chicago, IL
Wondering if generators might be hard to come by right now with what is going on in Texas


2004 Rinker 232
2010 Dodge Ram Crew Cab Laramie 4x4
#574940 - 02/23/21 10:35 AM Re: Home Backup Generator [Re: Justification]  
Joined: Jan 2003
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Justification Online content
Admiral
Justification  Online Content
Admiral

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,981
Fruit Heights, Utah
Liking this one, but I don't think it would be very portable

Big one


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#574942 - 02/23/21 01:09 PM Re: Home Backup Generator [Re: Justification]  
Joined: Oct 2003
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captkevin Offline
Admiral
captkevin  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 8,053
Chicago, IL
You could start your own power company


2004 Rinker 232
2010 Dodge Ram Crew Cab Laramie 4x4
#574948 - 02/26/21 08:45 AM Re: Home Backup Generator [Re: Justification]  
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kdl Offline
Admiral
kdl  Offline
Admiral

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Central Mass
Good luck on the install Mark. You'll be happy with the Generac. Wait times for units have been long. There is some stock out there but it's limited. I have five or six on order and don't expect to see them for another 2-3 months.


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