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harvey
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 1539 Moravia, NY
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2004-01-01          72825


I got my new Tiger Power generator from Dyna Tech in PA. It is a 20 KW generator. However the 20's were out of stock so they asked if a 30kw would be ok for a subisitute, same money. Uhhhhhhhhhh geezeeeeeee I think it would be ok. Remembering what Art said about to much tractor and not enough generator.

I have HP enough for about 17KW so the 20 was just over the safety line.

Anyway finially got trailer built photo # 7 and tested generator. All breakers off and service disconnected PTO gen to operating speed Volts at 220 and 60kh cycle it came in at 100 rpm less the rated 540 rpm.

Turning everything on in the house did not even phase it. The tractor eng never grunted as the small loads were applied. The tractor did grunt a little and voltage never quivered when the 220 water pump kicked on. I did not try and see if my air compressor or other large stuff would affect it because they would not be used anyway.

I had the gen out the other day and plugged my welder into it and even at the heaviest amp setting and biggest rod I have the tractor only made a very small grunt as arc was struck.

I am a happy camper with this set up. But do think I'll look for a small gen to run wood stove fans at night.

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Billy
Join Date: Oct 1999
Posts: 975 Southeast Oklahoma
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2004-01-01          72827


Sounds like a heck of a deal.

On the small gen for the heater fan. The guys that put my generator in (pic #1) had a dandy little generator. It was small enough to carry around with one hand. ....

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DRankin
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 5111 Northern Nevada
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2004-01-01          72833


Harvey, clear up a couple of points if you please.

Did you actually get a 30 KW?

And run through the RPM thing again? Is your PTO shaft turning 100 rpm less or your engine running 100 under the rated pto speed?

Thanks. ....

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TomG
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 5406 Upper Ottawa Valley
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2004-01-01          72840


Sounds like a good present and good it's working beyond expectations. I think what you are experiencing is that ratings for AC equipment are pretty conservative and houses usually are running much below the service rating.

Even fairly high starting surges for electric motors are of short duration. There's a decent change that inertia of the engine, drive train and larger generator is sustaining the rpm for the short time it takes for a motor to come up speed even if the requirements are greater than the tractor's pto hp. A larger generator and higher surges will be a bit harder on the pto clutch. You probably don't have to consider if the generator is exceeding it's duty cycle though.

Several motors starting up at the same time could be a different story though. I know that's what my 6.5kw standalone doesn't like much--never have popped a main though. It is possible for a big generator to bring a tractor down. That might be an issue if a number of large motors are on the system and it's running unattended. If it's an issue smaller mains probably could be installed. ....

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harvey
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 1539 Moravia, NY
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2004-01-01          72844


Mark yes it's a 30kw gen. 125 main breaker, however the labels read 20 kw because it's what I paid for. I have no issue with that I am pleased with the heavier setup. These folks treated me very good and I appreciate the no cost upgrade. It was only a couple of weeks from time of order till it was at home.

I'd have to look for sure but me thinks my tractor is rated at 2700 for 540 pto? the generator runs at 2600 or 100 rpm below whatever it is rated on the tach.

Tom you are right about the surges with bigger motors. Many times when the milk cooler compressor kicked in it really would make a 100hp tractor grunt, of course big vacum pump running at same time. We won't even discuss silo unloaders. I'm glad most of those are a thing of the past. As I said everything run very smooth with no noticiable fluxuations in the voltage meters. Of course that is why I'm happier with more generator than tractor. A big tractor would melt down a small generator and a big generator will bring a small tractor to its knees with a brown out and no damage done.

Thats why I did not try any of my larger shop tools. I guess I could just to see.

The main purpose of generator is: the boss to keep her shop running along with the computers when she is working, lighting and if I wanna watch TV in the evening. Generally just making things more comfortable for us. ....

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Art White
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 6885 Waterville New York
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2004-01-01          72848


With a spare gas tank around you have the Farmall M for back-up if ever the need. That way the loader tractor would be available for normal details. Nice work Harvey! ....

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harvey
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 1539 Moravia, NY
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2004-01-01          72859


Art you must read minds! ....

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Art White
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 6885 Waterville New York
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2004-01-01          72862


Good luck with it as it seems like you do have it beat! ....

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TomG
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 5406 Upper Ottawa Valley
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2004-01-02          72883


Good to hear a happy man! The issue of big tractors with small generators may be an issue for people still looking but not for Harvey. I think most melt downs come from people running a generator between its continuous and peak ratings for times longer than the duty cycle rating. That can easily happen with small lower-end generators. The may be advertised to impress by low cost and high peak ratings but at the expense of shorter duty cycles. The generator's breakers protect against peak loads but not against prolonged loads between the continuous and peak ratings. To manage this problem, the generator has to be larger than typical continuous loads. Harvey isn't likely to have this issue but I do. The automatic start up panel discussed here awhile back that shuts down circuits on a priority basis to manage load is a potential fix. ....

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grinder
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 677 central Maine
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2004-01-03          72947


http://www.gov.on.ca/OMAFRA/english/engineer/facts/00-059.htm

Harvey
I am thinking of getting a gen. for my 7500.
Can I use this info from Canada? ....

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Chief
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 4285 Southwest MiddleTennessee
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2004-01-03          72948


Information resource link grinder! Lots of good info. ....

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DRankin
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 5111 Northern Nevada
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2004-01-03          72949


Grinder..... I think you need to put this web address on the general board as a heading called MUST READ.

There is a whole bunch of quality info here about general tractor operation besides the generator info.

Great find!!! ....

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DRankin
Join Date: Jan 2000
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2004-01-03          72950


Grinder.... on the subject of the 7500 with a genset, if you can't find one small enough for your under 20 pto hp tractor, Deere has one designed for their X series 20-24 hp lawn tractors.

I can shoot you the relevant pages from the OM showing gen-output with various engines.

According to Deere it makes more kw's with a 24 horse diesel than it does with a 25 horse gas engine.

....

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grinder
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 677 central Maine
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2004-01-03          72952


Please do. Are these ratings for pto hp or engine hp.
What size would anyone recommend for a 3 bdr. 2 bath.
Lights,oil hwbb furnace, drilled well etc. Very seldom
needed. ....

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harvey
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 1539 Moravia, NY
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2004-01-03          72960


Grinder that is a awesome batch of info. I particulary liked the part about not tructing the tractor tach. I had already discovered this. My Gen has a voltage and frez meter built in. I used those.

Essentially I think the most imortant thing was not to overload the tractor hp or torque.

I think if you go this route, a test run with someone monitoring your voltage and freq as you add in your essential stuff to run.

There are sheets to add up watts you need to run and how to size your generator.

I oversized my gen because I wanted to have more than enough generator. I just happened to get a bonus. So in my application the tractor hp is the critical factor. I have enough tractor for about 17kw and if I did all of my watt adding right it should be 9kw more than I need, with all things on and starting the water pump.

I have a very good safety net. I would not be concerned about some voltage drops the power company routinely browns out many customers. My critical voltage stuff is all on dedicated power supplies so no problem there.

I'll look up the tiger power link and post this if you are interested. ....

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harvey
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 1539 Moravia, NY
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2004-01-03          72961


I really need to epmhasise that you do not have to size your generator to the tractor hp. You can get a 20kw generator and only have a 20hp tractor. It just means you have to limit your usage to the hp you have or about 10kw in this case. But that leaves no room for surges.

If you only need 6 kw to run your house you have a very comfortable margin of safety. ....

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harvey
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 1539 Moravia, NY
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2004-01-03          72967


Here's the link for where my pto gen came from. There is lots of info there also. ....


Link:   

Click Here


 
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TomG
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 5406 Upper Ottawa Valley
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2004-01-04          73014


With an oversized generator, you do have to be very sure of the loads. People do forget to turn things off or somebody else can turn something on unexpectedly. Brown-outs can overheat electric motors without popping a breaker.

A trick for people who don't have freq meters is to compare the times between an AC clock with a sweep second hand and a battery clock. My VOM has a freq meter section so that would be my alternative. Motors do run hotter at low frequencies and it's good to make sure the frequency is right.

Harvey's case is about the only reason I can see to run a generator that can demand appreciably more than the tractor's HP--and I'd take his deal most any day. Usually bigger generators cost more and the capacity can't really be used. They also put a bit more wear and tear on the pto drive. However, an advantage would be that the generator's continuous rating may be above the tractor's HP. High loads could be run continuously without heating the generator as long as the engine wasn't lugging. Don't know why generators don't have thermo switches but maybe high end ones do. ....

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7155 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2004-01-05          73111


Voltage, current and the related horsepower is the same in Metric or Imperial measure (he says with his tongue firmly planted in his cheek).

Best of luck. ....

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harvey
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 1539 Moravia, NY
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2004-01-05          73155


Murf you'll gonna make me wet myself... I get to snickering about metric. When we run up in Ontario, all we see is metric numbers...

HOW DOES THAT CONVERT FOR POPULATION??????

Harvey smilin ear2ear... ....

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7155 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2004-01-07          73343


A very good question Harvey....

Best the Government has figured so far is that there is DEFINITELY an inverse relationship involved.

It seems that when the temperature or the voltage goes down, the population goes up, there IS however about a nine month delay in the process... they estimate the power failure last fall alone will result in about 15,000 new Metric people.

All the usual fine print applies regarding liability resulting from spilled coffee or falling out of chairs from excessive laughing. Tissues NOT included. Premium membership required to access punch lines.


Best of luck. ....

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bud4410
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 2 maryland
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2004-11-13          100298


harvey i also bought a tiger power from dyna tech. same situation. i ordered a 12kw and ended up with a 15kw at the same price. nice people. i run it with my jd4410 about 30hp at the pto. only used it twice but is great.they say you need 2hp for each kw to be safe. mine also does not grunt when the heavest load kicks in [central ac compressor]. you do have to hook up to the tractor but overall a lot cheaper than a large enough self contained unit to run the whole house.regards BUD ....

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harvey
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 1539 Moravia, NY
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2004-11-13          100308


So far I've never "HAD" to use it. But I do get it out a couple of times a year and run my welder with it when I have some serious rod to burn.

It is a good exercise for the gen and keeps all the do-dads tickled and excited in the thing.

The big rods and high amps will make the tractor grunt when the arc is struck and it smooths right out. I've watched the voltage meters with boy striking an arc and they do not even quiver.

ILIKE IT! IF I never have to use it it will be the best money spent. ....

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DRankin
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 5111 Northern Nevada
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2004-11-15          100375


I finally got my transfer switch installed and an opprotunity to test my generator. It started the deep well pump without a hitch and it looks like it could run the whole house without problems.

It is a good feeling to have it available. ....

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jdlx173
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 12 western ny
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2004-11-17          100473


Hi Bud, I was wondering what is the cost of your generator? I've been pondering the thought of getting one for myself. I own a JD4200 with about 22hp at the pto. I would like to puchase one but I don't know what direction to go in. I run alot of pto equipment with the tractor and I know I have the power to run one. Any help would be appreciated. JD ....

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harvey
Join Date: Sep 2000
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2004-11-18          100486


I'm not Bud but I'll try your answer. The archives are full of info and pricing.

Your tractor will run a 10K gen and not overpower it. You can run a larger generator but you will only get about 10K because of your HP.

I opted for a larger gen than my tractor is rated for because the difference in money is not much and I may get a larger small tractor someday, or I could put my old M on it if I had to for a larger welding unit.

I'm limited by HP and not gen me thinks gen should last longer not build as much heat...

Cost of the 20K was around $1900

Harvey ....

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lbrown59
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 931 First Organized Permanent Settlement In The Northwest Territory.
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2004-11-19          100566


One problem i see is your tractor is tied up if you need it for something else at the same time ....

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kyvette
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 194 Central Kentucky
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2004-12-06          101704


Several safety points from a utility engineer on generators.

A properly installed transfer switch is a must on your service entrance. The transfer switch is a double throw switch whose common point is the house distribution panel. In the normal position the power company provides electric to your distribution panel. In the alternate position the generator provides the electric to your house panel.

Utility lineman have been killed from improper generator connections. If the power company source is not isolated from the generator you will back feed voltage to the service transformer. The transformer will step the 120/240 VAC from the generator up to a primary voltage, which is typically, 7200vac. This can be much higher depending on your utility. This voltage can kill. Additionally, if the utility company re-energizes the service with your generator connected an over-voltage occurs which can cause serious damage to your equipment.

Generators are excellent tools when used properly and by knowledgeable people. If you don't know what you are doing get someone who does. Because, someone's life maybe at risk. Dave ....

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
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2004-12-06          101708


In our area the electrical authority have a VERY dim view (no pun intended) of improperly wired generators.

A neighbour up the road from me discovered this the hard way last winter, during a storm a car took out a pole and brought down lines which caused an outage affecting most of this half of the township.

He thought nothing of it and sparked up the generator. A few minutes later a line crew came down the road checking the lines, when they got to his place a guy went up in the boom and used a special cutter to drop the leads coming from the pole to his house, then just drove away.

When he called the office they told him the line crew had discovered that his house was improperly wired and he was back-feeding the grid. They told him that he needed to hire an electrician and fix the problem, then call and they would have to do an inspection before they could re-connect him to the grid.

Unfortunately for him, the re-inspection required his entire house to meet TODAYS standards.

His entire house had been wired without grounded receptacles and the panel was only 60 amp, so it had to be upgraded to 100 amp minimum.

He was grumbling to me that it cost him thousands, I told him he was lucky, it could have cost someone their LIFE.

Best of luck. ....

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kyvette
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 194 Central Kentucky
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2004-12-07          101766


Murf, we like to be advised when homeowners have generators so we can be on the lookout for potential problems. Fortunately, no one at our utility has been injured due to improper generator connections.

A few years ago in the electric utility industry the buzz word was "distributive generation". This is were a industry or commercial establishment has an agreement with the utility company to use their emergency generators for load shedding. The utility will allow the power from the generator to back feed into its system, thereby reducing the utility's demand. In turn the utility will exercise and maintain the customer's generator.

We considered this but didn't purse due to the low cost of electric in our part of the country, approximately $0.05/KWH, and the adverse effects it would have on our contract with our transmission supplier.

Every winter we will issue a public notice about the proper way to connect a generator, trying to educate the public. However, there are those out there to don't listen or think they know more than they do.

Take care, Dave ....

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
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2004-12-07          101767


Ontario has amongst the tighest electrical safety regulations of any jurisdiction in North America.

Unfortunately we also have a great number of very old electrical services still in operation, and oddly enough our reg.'s don't require that existing services be upgraded.

When that is combined with things like the big ice storm a few years back, the great blackout in the summer of 2003, and the Y2K scare the result is that we have a lot of generators hooked up to painfully out-dated wiring.

I have a neighbour at the cottage who regularly fires up a 25KW diesel genset and feeds it into his KNOB & TUBE wired 100 year old post & beam cottage!!!

Some people are just plain stoooooopid.

Best of luck. ....

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denwood
Join Date: Jul 2004
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2004-12-07          101773


First let me say that my house is wired correctly for a generator, and not that anyone should do an improper generator hookup, but if you are in a pinch, there is an easy and almost safe way. Make sure you switch off your main 100, 200, or more amp service disconnect first, this protects the power company. Then, just make a double male extention cord that plugs into your generator 240 outlet and also to a 240 welder, compressor, etc. outlet. Make sure the generator output from it's 240 socket is less than or equal to the amp breaker you are back feeding. This lets you choose any circuit in the house to run and isolates you from the power company. It also keeps you from any "rewiring". I use this method at times when I am renovating a house that is not connected to the power company at all. ....

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lbrown59
Join Date: Sep 2004
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2004-12-07          101800


Then, just make a double male extention cord that plugs into your generator 240 outlet and also to a 240 welder, compressor, etc. outlet
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
This is dangerous.
No extension cord should have a mail plug on each end.
This is an open invitation to someone getting shocked or electrocuted.
....

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kyvette
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2004-12-08          101831


Denwood, I agree with Ibrown, this is not safe, and you said it yourself "almost safe". There is no middle ground when it comes to safety, its either safe or its not safe. Any installation that fails to meet code, NEC and/or NESC, is considered a dangerous situation.

I would suggest on an existing house panel that is not connected to the utility source that you do the following: remove the main service conductors to the main breaker (typically 200amp) from the panel then connect your generator to the main breaker lugs. This way you will have a visual open connection to the utility and the distribution panel breakers will protect you and the circuit. However, you can overload the generator. A typical house(1500-2500sqft) in our area will use 9 - 13kw. Be sure the connecting conductors between the generator and panel are rated to carry the load. Better still, get advice from your electrical inspectors. Dave ....

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Murf
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2004-12-08          101839


Dave is right. Denwoods method could likely kill an unsuspecting linesman who failed to carefully check all three conductors assuming the lines were safe.

In fact this is EXACTLY the methgod used by my neighbour that led to his electrical service being disconnected by the utility.

In almost all cases the "mains" in a house are only double pole single throw switches, this means only the two "hot" wires are disconnected, this leaves the neutral side and the ground bonded through to the incoming lines. They are the potential problem.

If under these circumstances you had a faulty wire somewhere you could, using the ground and neutral conductors electrify the lines in front of your house.

This is what electrocutes linesmen working on "dead" lines.

The other hazard is merely burniung down the house or wrecking some expensive electronic equipment. Since you are tapping into the 220v. side of the wiring and depending on luck to have a balnced split between the two legs of the 220 wiring you run the risk of having all (or even most) of the load on one side of the generator. This could lead to very low voltages and much higher than normal current flowing.

The ONLY safe way to use a generator is to either plug the desired item directly into the genset, or have a proper transfer panel, a switch which will COMPLETELY isolate the generator and all the load to be transferred to it from the incoming utility lines.

Best of luck. ....

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denwood
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2004-12-08          101903


I am aware and agree with all your posts. Safety is of great importance, unfortunatly it is the first thing most people are willing to compromise on. Just look at the speed limit and the speed poeple actually drive. Even hooking the generator directly to the main lugs is having a double male cord, male at one end bare wires at the other. Putting your self at risk is one thing, putting others at risk is where the line needs to be drawn. Certainly a person should have a good grasp of what they are doing and the risks involved to remain safe. You know what they say "Common sense isn't" ....

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steve4300
Join Date: Dec 2004
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2005-01-16          104349


As a eletrical contractor I Have to say Never back feed a house, it can kill. The transformer out on the street works both ways if it reduces the voltage for your house it can increase the voltage from you generator. Now there are a lot of good tranfer switches out there for all sizes of generators. they will disconnect the two hot leads for the circuits you want on the generator. I have never seen a disconect that also disconnects the neutral or ground wires. Here is agood link for small generator transfers. ....


Link:   pro/trans - reliance controls

 
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denwood
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2005-01-25          104894


Steve4300, you are right about the transfer switches being 2 pole, so the grounds are always still connected to the utility wires. Mine is a midwest installed by a licensed electrician and inspected and to code. So if these are ever a problem, it is really a code problem. Before you think Murf is a dummy or just likes to type, remember he is from Canada and it may be different there, as many things are. Heck they even had the flu shot and we couldn't get any. As far as overloading one side of the generator? Doesn't every single person who hooks a 220 generator to a breaker panel, in any manner, that also uses 120 circuits, pose a slight risk of that? When you energize a breaker box with 220, you energize both poles which alternate breakers as you go down each column. If by chance it happens that every other 120 breaker is used at the same time, it could load one side. Other than proper planning of breaker placement, is there any other way to reduce this slim possibility? ....

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steve4300
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2005-01-25          104923


denwood , I do believe electrical codes are stricter in Canada. As far as balancing the loads on a generator, most electricians use a clamp -on amp meter and try to figure out what each load is drawing. ....

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Murf
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2005-01-26          104942


You are both correct, the electrical safety reg.'s in Canada are amongst the strictest in the world.

Here we must have a transfer switch which a) breaks the neutral bond between the generator supply and the utility's supply lines, and b) it must be of a "break-before-make" design, in other words it must open all 3 circuits from the utility's lines BEFORE it can connect to the generator. They also MUST be capable of transferring their full rated capacity UNDER LOAD.

The ground wire is a moot point since one conductor cannot form a circuit, especially when it's grounded anyway.

Most transfer switches here are also equipped with a neutral bond break delay to ensure there is no out of phase issues created by the transfer switch.

IMHO, a 2 pole transfer switch is just a big poke waiting to happen to someone, likely an unsuspecting linesman.

Best of luck. ....

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denwood
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2005-01-26          104946


"The ground wire is a moot point since one conductor cannot form a circuit, especially when it's grounded anyway."
Murf are you saying in Canada the ground is separated from the neutrals. Here they are all together, which would make sense as to why you thought the neutrals could be more dangerous(not being grounded) like they are here. ....

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Murf
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2005-01-26          104947


No the neutral leg is bonded to the ground here also.

However, as I'm sure you are painfully aware, electricity takes the path of least resistance. If there is a bach-feed situation there is a 220 V. potential on the neutral out to the transformer which will, as mentioned, step it up to line voltage.

If an unsuspecting linesman becomes the conductor to complete the circuit he gets a big poke.

Thats why the neutral MUST be disconnected here to prevent potential back-feeding of the grid.

Best of luck. ....

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AnnBrush
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2005-01-26          104963


Here is a BIG wrinkle:
I have a regular breaker box / load center. Coming into the house are 3 wires from the utility co, 2 hot (L1 and L2) and one neutral, neutral is bonded to ground at the load center. Potential difference is 110 V between each hot line and neutral and 220V across the two hot lines. The main switch (labeled MAIN PRINCIPAL) opens connectors on L1 and L2, neutral / ground have no switches to disconnect and are hard wired to the utility co. I bought a generator transfer switch (GE - reputable brand). I opened it up and guess what it does, it only disconnects L1 and L2, neutral / ground is routed straight through with no opportunity for disconnection. It seems to me the transfer switch only limits or chooses which individual circuits to energise and opens contacts on L1 and L2. In theory this identical setup can be achieved by opening the main principal switch on the panel, plugging a male electricity source from a generator into a dryer outlet and opening individual branch circuits you do not want energized. Bar saftey and code issues (yes these are important) can anyone describe how the two setups are FUNCTIONALLY different? ....

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Murf
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2005-01-26          104965


There is absolutely no difference, that's exactly the problem.

It is so easy and simple that most people do it exactly that way, make up a cord with a male plug on each end and away they go.

In some areas it is even borderline legal.

However, it is not safe or smart.

It is also difficult to balance the load properly doing it that way since it is purely chance which side of the supply the load happens to be on.

Best of luck. ....

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steve4300
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2005-01-26          104967


If you are talking about the ge transfer swithch i think you are it will only let you get power from one soures at a time. it would be machanicaly imposiple to apply power from two dirrerent sources. As far as disconnecting the neutral the reason why you don't see neutral disconnects here in the US is because it isnt cost effective to have them on the shelves if they are not needed. If Canada requieres it then the supply house will carry them. ....

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AnnBrush
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2005-01-26          104973


So if the neutral line is not disconected in the transfer switch it is still possible to back feed the Utility co transformer when an unbalanced 220V load is applied to L1 and L2 of the generator. Neutral will carry the unbalanced load and since this line is not isolated from the utility Co it will transfer it to the grid. In this case the use of a transfer switch does nothing to prevent this potential hazard?

FYI For clarity I am not speaking about having L1 and L2 connected to BOTH the generator and the grid at the same time, these would be isolated by the transfer switch or the main if the male - male plug was used. ....

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kyvette
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2005-01-26          104978


For those of us in the USA the NEC (national electic code) is the governing publication for installation of electric facilities.

By definition, Art. 100, Switch, Transfer is "An automatic or nonautomatic device for transferring one or more load conductor connections from one power source to another". As someone has already stated, this means you break one source before make of the other source.

Additional information on generators, standby power systems, etc can be found in Art 230, 445, 700, 702, & 705 in the NEC. You should be able to acquire a copy at your local library.

This is the only way to connect a generator and be safe for all parties involved. Dave ....

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Murf
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2005-01-26          104979


Steve, I suspect that it is as you say, also the NEC in the US doesn't require it. They assume that the electric utility has done it's job and everything at the transformer, etc., is wired the way it's supposed to be. That is a potentially fatal assumption.

Say for example the power outage, the reason for running the genset, is a result of a lightning strike. If the lightning strike destroyed the neutral conductor on the primary side of the transformer then you could have not only substantial potential on the lines, but you could in fact also have lit up any telephone or cable TV wires that not well grounded, even if they are well grounded they could form a return for the primary circuit.

Try searching on Google or Yahoo for "stray voltage" or "stray current", there is mountains of data out there on this subject.

Best of luck. ....

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steve4300
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2005-01-26          104982


After twenty years i have found no proplems with any of the UL approved devices for tranfering power. Now power does return on the neutral but it returns to the source. Also the neutral does not go thruogh the transformer and if you look each house and transformer and most power poles have a grounding wire , which are attached to ground rods or metal pipes going into the earth. if needed i could get into thearoy but we dont have enuogh time for that.My thought is if you hier a good electrician if it is wrong its his fault, also here in NH the power companys will only let you install certain transfer switches ....

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denwood
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2005-01-26          105018


Steve4300, I have been sitting here wondering why Canada would put an extra transformer on the neutral line so that a mistaken backfeed could be stepped up to make an even bigger problem. If our utility companies start putting transformers on neutrals that carry no current, I will know they are charging too much for electricity.
I am also still wondering how a properly installed transfer switch balances a load that an unsafe hookup fails to do. No breakers changed position at my house. Electrically speaking, isn't feeding both poles at the top of the panel the same as feeding both poles anywhere along them? Just like placing a breaker at the top will result in the same usable power as placing it at the bottom. ....

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Murf
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2005-01-27          105043


Denwood, there is no transformer connection to the neutral, in fact the neutral is bridged past the transformer.

A part of properly installing transfer switch is making sure that the feed and the load are balanced, ie, an equal amount of current on each leg of the 220V. feed from the genset.

A typical house service panel is not wired with a balanced load in mind, usually it just wired up according to which wire the electrician happened to grab next. If you were to just feed pull down the mains, and backfeed a 220V. circuit like the dryer plug, you could have a balanced load, or you could have the entire load on one leg. Thats the problem.

However, many, many people merely re-arrange the load at the service panel to accomplish a balanced load and then backfeed it from a generator. Several people in my area do this, some even use a SP/ST switch box to disconnect the neutral from the service connection which at least makes the setup a little safer.

Best of luck. ....

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AnnBrush
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2005-01-27          105044


Is this the consensus: The opening of the main switch at the main curcuit breaker box (L1 and L2) and subsequent connection to a 220V outlet of a male - male plug hooked up to a generator poses the same threat of back feeding the utility co (on the neutral line only) as a properly installed transfer switch? In other words no threat at all? Now if the main switch is closed while the generator is still plugged in the the 220V dryer plug, thats a different story all together. My take home message appears to be as follows: I can use the 220V male male plug hookup IF the main switch is OPEN and not back feed the utility co. Of course I assume other electrical risks by doing so but these do not include the risk of back feeding the grid and harming a lineman? ....

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Murf
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2005-01-27          105055


I think the source of most of the confusion around this subject is that most people, including electricians, feel there is no electricity in the neutral wire since it is grounded, in fact nothing could be farther from the truth.

First of all let me say, that in ANY circumstance where the neutral is still connected to the utility company's grid, the potential risk exists, whether or not the mains are open.

Maybe if I give the 'big picture' it will make it clearer. The phenomenon is called stray Voltage.

The electrical utility company causes the problem of stray voltage when they connect the neutral on the primary side of the transformer to the neutral on the secondary winding of the transformer. Why do they do this? Because this is the standard connection specified in the National Electrical Safety Code (NESC) which governs the utilities. The National Electrical Code (NEC), which covers all wiring, requires that the secondary neutral be hard wired to the buildings water system, structure and electrical ground rod.

Therefore, the voltage level of the building structure and water system is elevated to the voltage level of the primary neutral conductor on the utilities electrical distribution network. This voltage can be significant and is the primary cause of Stray Voltage.

The origin of the stray voltage problem lies in the fact that Electrical Utilities do not make a distinction between the function of the Neutral (the grounded conductor) and a Ground. The Electrical Utilities in conjunction with the IEEE has developed the National Electrical Safety Code (NESC). This code requires them to ground the primary neutral conductor at least four times per mile that they distribute electricity. Electrically, the ground rods are actually resistors ranging from 10 to several hundred ohms. The actual resistance depends upon the moisture content and conductivity of the soil. In other words, the utilities are forced to deliberately design their systems to use the earth as a secondary neutral conductor.

The voltage on the primary neutral increases as the distance from the substation increases. Each ground rod tends to reduce the voltage by diverting some of the neutral current into the earth. The current splits between the neutral wire and ground rod in accordance with ohms law. The primary neutral voltage at the end of the distribution line can be 20 volts or more depending on the combined load on the distribution line and the conductivity of the earth. The NESC requires the Electrical Utility to connect the primary neutral to the secondary neutral on each transformer serving a customer. The National Electrical Code (NEC) which governs all wiring requires that the secondary neutral be grounded to the water pipes for every building being served. Effectively the SAFETY CODES require us to hard wire our water system directly to the neutral on the primary distribution side of the transformer.

However, when you connect a generator and put power to the house's wiring, the 220V. gets split, there is 110V. between each of L1 & L2 and the neutral, and 220V. between L1 & L2 directly, but if the conditions are right, or maybe wrong is a better word, there is voltage potential in the neutral itself. If that neutral, which is a continuous conductor all the way through the grid, gets connected by a person's body, like a linesman who thinks he's working on a 'dead' circuit, or telephone wires, or cable TV wires and it becomes a better conductor, guess what? Somebody gets a shock. In a worst case scenario it can kill.

The bottom line is anytime there is potential in the neutral beyond your house it's a bad thing.

Best of luck.
....

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kyvette
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2005-01-28          105123


Murf, excellent reply, which I agree with.

A couple of additional points, some areas permit PVC water supply lines from the house to the main, thereby reducing or in effect eliminating the benefit of the ground to the water line connection.

The terms stray voltage and ground potential rise both refer to current flow in the neutral/earth ground system. The purpose of the bonding is to prevent a difference of potential, which can also be called step potential (touch potential). This is defined as the potential difference between two points on the earth. If this voltage (potential difference) is large enough it can kill.

If anyone is interested there is an excellent book called "Ground Currents and Stray voltage" written by O.C. Seevers. Published by the Fairmount Press in 1989. Mr Seevers was a long time engineer with Kentucky Utilities in Lexington, Kentucky.

An additional reference source is the IEEE green book. ....

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harvey
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2005-01-29          105156


I have to ask the question. If the transfer switches only disconnect as an industry standard how do you disconnect the neutral? Do you need to?

As I read all of this I am more confused about the neutral.

I have 2 10' rods 6' apart with 20'of #6 bare copper 12" down laid out in a grid for the utility and a seperate 10' rod for the gen. How in the world could I possibly back feed a neutral? There is also a ground rod connected at the pole. ....

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ncrunch32
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2005-01-29          105157


Is there a transfer switch available that lets you switch the main power before the breaker panel to generator power? Why do all these transfer switches make you select which circuits you want to run when you install them? I want to have ALL circuits available to me and just shut off the circuits in the main panel that I don't want to run. And I want the setup to be simple. ....

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ncrunch32
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2005-01-29          105160


By the way, at the risk of causing a riot after having read this thread, I once had a licensed electrician set up a backfeed for my house where I could plug in a portable generator. A relative of mine is a professional engineer who has built a power plant and puts up commercial buildings. He backfeeds his house. Convincing people to buy a transfer switch for $500 when professionals around us simply "turn off the main" is difficult.

Also - it is true that transfer switches do just that. They just simply ensure that the main is turned off before the generator input is turned on. You take the risk that you could mentally slip and forget to turn off the main when you avoid purchasing a transfer switch. ....

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denwood
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2005-01-29          105171


Harvey, if you play the lottery, there may be a chance you would win it too. I am curious, did whoever install your transfer switch, rebalance the poles in your breaker box?

Ncrunch, I believe the switches you have been looking at are the northern hydraulic variety. El cheapo. I think they are designed for people, who have a small generator, not big enough for the whole house, AND AT THE SAME TIME, are not aware enough to be able to resist the temptation to run everything in the house at once. They attempt to idiot proof the generator a little, and succeed in making the house very inconvenient. If you just buy a regular switch and choose the circuits you want, you can have all circuits available, just not all at once with a small generator. ....

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ncrunch32
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2005-01-29          105175


Denwood - yes I think that I might have seen the more expensive switches. Probably you have to call the electric company because you would want the power shut off to the whole house before installing such a switch before the box. And that triggers a visit from your local electric inspector.

The power company will rent you a transfer switch for your whole house (like $5-10 a month). But they will not let you purchase it. I have seen my PE relative once handle handle the live wire coming in to the house. I would never attempt that.

I used to run off a 4KW generator as a backup for years. I purchased an 18HP 10KW generator last summer from Northern tools. I replaced my line into the house with #6 wire and tested it out. It ran great. Ran whole house. Of course I left off pool pump, hot tub, and central air.
My wife is crazy and actually would like to be able to run everything when the power goes out - but costs quickly spiral up when you get to 30KW backup setups.
....

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denwood
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2005-01-29          105177


I have never heard of renting a switch, but I am not from NY. Here a good switch ran around $200-250 several years back, but you need some extra stuff to install. Any licensed electrician can do the job. To shut off the house, you just pull the meter, no electric company needed, here anyway. The inspector you probably do need. At the time, I asked the stupid question, "If I only have a 50 amp generator, why do I have to buy a 200 amp transfer switch?" DUH, if I had thought for a moment. You have to have a switch big enough to handle the amp service you have from the power company, not the gen set, which is where those cheap northern partial switches save a little money, they don't transfer the whole load. ....

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AnnBrush
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2005-01-29          105199


I have been doing research on this topic and it would seem that we are all ignorant in this area. This topic is one of much debate among electritians trying to install generator hookups that are up to code. The BIG differences are opinions on the neutral (should it be switched at the transfer switch or not) and whether or not to bond the neutral to ground. The code distinguishes between generators that are SDS (separately derived system) or not and that is one of many factors that determines whether the neutral is switched. There are also factors that determing whether a generator should be grounded or not. In most cases it is actually MORE dangerous to ground a portable (not permanently installed) generator. I have reread the posts in this thread and it seems to me that the opinion that comes closest to code for a PORTABLE (this would include PTO and all carted generators and may even include some of the larger generac systems) generator is as follows:
Install a transfer switch that switchs L1 and L2 but NOT neutral. Do NOT ground the generator with a grounding rod and make sure that neutral is NOT bonded to ground at the generator. A good site with tons of info by people who do this for a living is provided in the link. ....


Link:   

Click Here


 
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kyvette
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2005-02-02          105404


Denwood, pulling an electric meter is considered tampering and is against the law. If you notice there is a colored wire seal attached to the meter base that you must cut to remove the meter. the purpose of this seal is to indicate to the utility that an un-authorized person had access to the meter base. This is the utilities source of revenue and they are very protective. We prosecute for tampering with the service.

Additionally, it is very dangerous if you don't use the proper equipment. Not only can the meter glass break but a lug could break and cause a short circuit resulting in a flash burn. People have been seriously hurt, you can have 5000 to 10,000 amps of available fault current at the meter base. Saving the cost of a service call could end up costing alot more in the long run. Dave ....

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Murf
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2005-02-02          105407


AB, you are getting very close, there are risks of grounding a portable genset, it is safer to use the neutral to ground the genset into the house system. It is NOT, however, safe to leave the neutral connected back to the grid from the house when the house is being back-fed by a genset. There is a very real risk of creating a potential in the neutral and causing a hazard for anyone working on the supposedly dead wires in the grid.

KY, a very good point about meter tampering, although I would think the bigger hazard would be from taking the meter off it's base and having all those live leads open to anyone who wanders by.

Best of luck. ....

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denwood
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2005-02-02          105421


I didn't really mean you personally should pull the meter, the licensed electrician that did my install pulled the meter. As far as him getting in trouble, that is on him, although I can tell you that PECO seems pretty laid back about the whole thing, but maybe they are not. Too schedule a shutoff takes several days as does getting it turned back on, very inconvenient trying to schedule an electrician and power company at the same time and to have minimal down time. ....

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2005-02-02          105431


According to my relative, the professional engineer who builds power plants, the way to pull the meter is to smash the glass on the meter and tell the power company you have been vandalized. Then pull the meter. If you do things the "right" way - you will never get the job done. You have to schedule a shutdown with the power company - and the electrical inspector simultaneously. Then the power company comes and shuts power down - but doesn't wait for job to be done to turn power back on. They come back a few days later to turn power back on - and you are without power for a few days - not worth the effort. ....

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ncrunch32
Join Date: Dec 2003
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2005-02-02          105432


Also - my relative was smart enough to install a switch between the meter and his fuse box so that he would never have this problem when he built his house. I wish I had such a switch in my house! ....

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kyvette
Join Date: Feb 2004
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2005-02-03          105440


Ncruch32, your engineer friend needs to read the Engineer's Code of Ethics, and review the oath he took when he accepted his license. His attitude is a disgrace to the profession.

With my company, you can schedule a disconnect for first thing in the morning with a reconnect prior to quiting time. That is provided your electrician (and passes inspection) can complete the job within the time frame. We take pride in being responsive to the needs of the customer and do our best to work with them.

Depending on the location and accessibility of the distribution panel a main service disconnect maybe required, ref NEC art. 230.70, between the meter and distribution panel. Dave ....

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ncrunch32
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2005-02-03          105442


Kyvette, your response is expected :) I certainly don't think my BIL actually has ever smashed any glass since he is the honest type and is a church elder. He was speaking hypothetically. However I do know that he has handled the live wires coming into a house rather than bother calling the power company to shut the power off. He carefully inserts a block of wood between the hot leads and tapes the wires around the leads and the block. He would rather risk his life than bother calling the power company. (I know that this will evoke even more response!) ....

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AnnBrush
Join Date: Mar 2004
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2005-02-03          105452


No so Murf. The factor that determines whether to switch neutral in the transfer switch is related to how the generator is wired internally and grounded externally. In fact with certain generators, (mostly portable types including PTO driven generators) "backfeeding" of the neutral is required by the NEC (code). If the generator is a floating neutral generator (neutral not bonded to frame) then neutral must NOT be switched at the transfer switch. In this configuration the generator system uses the service neutral and associated bonding with the GEC (Grounding electrode conductor)at the service panel to to ground the neutral (zero volt reference) and a switched neutral will open that connection resulting in an ungrounded EGC (equipment grounding conductor) and floating neutral. If the generator has neutral bonded to the frame then a transfer switch that switches neutral is required. The generator is now required to have its own separate grounding electrode conductor (grounding rod). In short: No bond between frame and neutral on the generator (floating neutral) = use a transfer switch that does not switch neutral. If neutral is bonded to the frame, use a transfer switch that switches ground and install a separate ground rod.

Read the posts on generators at the link below, there are several, some have circuit diagrams that are very helpful. ....


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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
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2005-02-03          105453


Ann, with all due respect, I think you need to re-read my post and the link I posted.

I said "... there are risks of grounding a portable genset, it is safer to use the neutral to ground the genset into the house system. It is NOT, however, safe to leave the neutral connected back to the grid from the house when the house is being back-fed by a genset.".

I did not, nor did I intend to, say that the house & genset should NOT BE grounded. To open the neutral without leaving an adequate ground for the system would be foolish, and an open invitation for electrocution and or a fire.

What I was trying to get across was that there is a very real danger in leaving the neutral connected back to 'the grid'.

The only safe way to do it would be to have the service panel grounded directly such that when the neutral is opened the system is still grounded.

When the NEC was written it was not worded with the proliferation of gensets that we have today in mind.

Here in Canada, where the electrical safety regulations are amongst the strictest in the world, NOT opening the neutral back to the grid is a violation.

Best of luck. ....

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denwood
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 542 Quarryville PA
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2005-02-03          105467


In the town where I have some rental houses, when PECO (Philadelphia Electric Co.) shuts off your power, they come out, pull the meter and install near paper thin clear plastic sleeves on the meter legs and re-install it. A few days later when they can finally fit you in, they come out and remove the little sleeves. Not all houses here can be shut off at the pole and I guess they don't want to keep track of loose meters. I wish I had put in a disconnect before the meter too. I am wondering if there is an easy way to install a beeper or something before the generator transfer switch to let me know when power comes back on. If I had to guess, I'd say code just doesn't allow such a convenience. ....

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
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2005-02-04          105481


Some transfer switches available up here feature a small bulb like those found on circuit testers which lights up to indicate when there is power available from the grid. Other more expensive systems on permanent generator installations are switched electrically, when the electricity is off form 5 seconds, the switch disconnects the service and starts the generator, when the power comes back on, the switch turns off the generator and returns the service to the grid connection.

Our electrical safety code requires a main switch and fuses or breakers rated for the full capacity of the service panel.

In other words, we have the meter, then (usually, the present minimum) a 100 amp switch, then a pair of 50 amp fusible links, then the service panel itself.

This is the problem, it is too easy to merely flip the main service switch and plug a genset into a dryer or welder recepticle.

Best of luck. ....

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AnnBrush
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2005-02-04          105493


Hi Murf, and of course others following this thread.

Quoting Murf:
"What I was trying to get across was that there is a very real danger in leaving the neutral connected back to 'the grid'"

I am going to have to respectfully disagree with you on this statement. How does leaving the neutral connected back to 'the grid' pose a danger, the neutral is grounded at the transformer (and at the service entrance) and voltage is not transformed on this leg. In many instances (as described in my post above on internal wiring of the generator) this connection is required by code (up to and including the 2005 NEC). Take a look at my pictures 2 and 3, they describe the problem nicely. Now if the generator has neutral bonded to the frame then a transfer switch that switches neutral would be required to prevent parallel current flow on the EGC and neutral. This is the real danger here, not "backfeeding" the neutral on the grid. Perhaps we have some folk on this forum who are familiar with the code and wiring these units who could comment? ....

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AnnBrush
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2005-02-04          105495


Interested members:
Here is the reason for my post above, Murf with all due respect (and I have great respect for your opinion) your advice is potentially hazardous in this case. It's a very good article I urge interested folk to read it.

http://members.rennlist.org/warren/Gen_Panels_Appl_Note_EN.pdf ....


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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
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2005-02-04          105501


Electricicty will ALWAYS take the path of least resistance. Nobody will argue that.

What most people fail to realize though is that it will rarely take ONE SINGLE path.

When you power a house by putting 220v. from a genset into the service panel, then power 110v. loads by 'splitting' the 220v. using the neutral and one leg of the 200v. you now have converted the neutral into a current carrying conductor.

Period.

The part most people cant get their head around is a concept known as "neutral-to-earth voltage". Do a little research on it, the answers you will be find are astounding to most people.

Best of luck.

....

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AnnBrush
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2005-02-04          105517


Murf (and of course others still reading this thread),
Neutral IS a current carrying conductor, always has been. It's bonded to ground to provide a zero volt potential difference between the neutral conductor and ground. This ensures that each of the "hot" lines will always be a maximum of 110v potential difference from ground. Only one connection/bond to ground is permitted and its at the service entrance, this ensures that the equipment ground conductor (bare ground wire or EGC) does not behave as a parallel current conductor for neutral current.

On a floating neutral generator:
If, as you suggest you employ a transfer switch that opens the neutral (as well as the supply side L1 and L2) you have disconnected the generator neutral from its ground reference and L1 or L2 could float to 220v (say between L1 and ground) while the other leg could be at 0v (between L2 and ground). By this action you have created the "earth to neutral voltage" you spoke of. The neutral is REQUIRED to remain bonded to ground in this configuration, opening the neutral at the transfer switch breaks the connection. See diagram 8 in the web link I posted. An excerpt of their explanation is pasted below, BTW its a Canadian company, read their narritive and take a look at the diagrams.

IF on the other hand you have a bonded neutral generator you are required to open the neutral conductor at the transfer switch. The bottom line is that in order to be code compliant the type of generator determines the type of transfer switch.


Excerpt form article:
These Diagrams (7 and 8) show that a 3-pole transfer
mechanism switching Line 1, Line 2 and the
neutral conductors would result in a circuit that
does not comply with the rules of the CEC. In
stand-by power mode, a circuit exists in which
the system voltage from the generator could
float on each phase. In the most extreme case
240Vac would appear on one phase and 0Vac
on the second phase, potentially resulting in
damage to any 120Vac equipment operated in
the home. ....


Link:   

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DRankin
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 5111 Northern Nevada
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2005-02-05          105527


Two things from the peanut gallery:

1) You guys left me in the dust back on page one.

2) Boy am I glad I hired a professional to install my transfer switch!!! ....

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NHDaveD
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2005-02-05          105535


I have to agree with DRankin - you guys have have left me in the dust - not quite on page 1 but, pretty darn close. I'm a Mech. Engineer, consider myself fairly intellegent, but not too smart for my own good if you know what I mean. I have worked around elecrical systems and electronics quite a bit but this stuff is over my head, Some of this, especially the discussion and confusion about "neutral-to-earth voltage", is what I refer to as FM - F___ing Magic. Electricity, like many other sciences or parts of sciences is very unpredictable. As soon as we think we have our hands around it it changes course. Physics is not an exact science no matter what they say. So expect the worst case and try to prepare for it.

I didn't hire a professional to install my transfer switch but I did buy what I believe to be a good quality unit and I followed all the instructions to the best of my ability.

Maybe I'll gather all my spec data and take some pictures and have you guys tell if I've done something wrong and what I can do to correct it. You've got me thinking that I'll burn my house down or kill some poor linesman. Neither one is acceptable.

Maybe I'll hire a professional but, I bet if I hire 12 highly qualified licensed electricians I'll get six of one answer and a half a dozen of another. ;o) ....

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Chief
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 4285 Southwest MiddleTennessee
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2005-02-05          105544


The over load of the flux capacitor due to interdimensional wormhole fluctuation caused by the premature discharge of the nucleonic planet buster coil is what you have to be really careful of. ;O) It shorts out the bovine nutrient residue detector grid everytime!!! ....

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AnnBrush
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2005-02-05          105564


NO, NO, NO, 2ndHandLion it's the plutonic planet buster coil, not the nucleonic planet buster coil, recall that there are two of them (in series) - gosh get it right next time will ya! Well it doesn't look like anyone is loosing any sleep over this so that's good - that's mainly because no one could get their generator running (to code) and so just decided to go to bed - well that's what I usually do in an outage, wake up next morning - guess the power came on sometime in the night.

Seriously, what's concerning is the HUGE amount of discussion there is on this subject at Mike Holt's National Electric Code forum, and these are the "professionals" that install the switches. I lurk there sometimes due to work requirements (PC data control and remote sensing). Don't know which is more dangerous running the generator or burning 6483678 candles for light during an outage. ....

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NHDaveD
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2005-02-05          105565


Amen, 2ndHandLion, Amen! ;0) ....

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HuckMeat
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 121 Colorado
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2005-02-05          105569


OK, now to really mess this thread up:

1) Could you install a transfer switch between a main panel and a sub panel, say, a sub panel that fed only the most important circuits (like the furnace blower?)

2) What transfer switches have you guys installed on your houses? I'd be looking for a 200A switch (to carry the panel rating). ....

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harvey
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2005-02-06          105575


HM Generally that is how many do it. Prioritize the things your need/want to run and put them into a seperate panel with your transfer switch between them.

That is the easiest and simplest way to do it if you feel the need to have the transfer switch, with out, or with, electricians and power companies involved.

Otherwise backfeed! Just make sure you know enough to turn off the main breaker B4 you even consider setting up your generator. Keep a eye on the neighbors to see when power comes back on. Then un hook your gen B4 you touch the main breaker.

If others are going to hook it up I would say with out a doubt get a switch. I think that is the concern with this thread. I do not trust too many other people to be safe either.

A farmer several years ago had a manual switch installed by the power company a big bladed thing on the pole. It failed! one leg did not disconnect and back fed the grid it brought the tractor to its knees. He shut it down. We just had a major failure with the power companys feed. They had to disconnect us for 2 days, at work, while our electroides checked all of our main transformers and sub transformers oils and contact switches. We were on gen power "BACKFED" for 2 days. When the power company reconnected us their switch contacts failed at 10 pm on a Sat night, big arc fire on the pole.

Nothing is FOOL proof. It only takes a small rivit to drop out of a switch blade on the switch and you'll have a live leg back to the grid. I believe Sq D just had a big recall on many of their large switches because a plastic disconnect link failed. When you pull the switch to disconnect the link broke and the line stays hot and the switch is in the off position.

ALWAYS TREAT ELECTRIC LINES AS LIVE UNTIL YOU PUT A METER ON IT.
....

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DRankin
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2005-02-06          105589


"Don't know which is more dangerous running the generator or burning 6483678 candles for light during an outage."

If I have told you once, I've told you a hundred million times to stop exaggerating! ....

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AnnBrush
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2005-02-06          105591


Sorry I mis-counted its 6483677 candles. ....

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