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Old 03-25-2012, 05:29 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Fiesta48 View Post
These all seems like too much work. I have a 30A Male to 15A Female adapter for the RV then run a heavy duty cord inside to the house to run the frig/heater/fan and/or light(s) for the few times we have lost power. And remember your generator cost $4/hour now (@1 gal/Hr.) to operate.
Ditto.
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Old 03-25-2012, 07:15 PM   #16
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I installed a UL Certified Generator Transfer Panel in the house, this is a multiple switch box. Can switch both 120 and 240 volt circuits, It was fed by either the main breaker box (Which it fed back to and sat beside) or an "Inlet" on the back of the house (30 amp twist lock 4-pole) The circuits (Lights, Furnace, Communications stuff) I wanted to switch were on the "E-Panel" (Generator transfer)

I installed a matching 30 amp twist lock outlet (Along with a pair of TT-30 pigtails) in a basement compartment out of the weather.

Now when the lights went out in Detroit.. I went down to the dark cold basement (With flashlight) got the heavy duty custom made (By me) extension cord, plugged the outlet end into the house inlet, plugged the plug end into the Motor home outlet, purshed a few buttons, installed the Genturi and back to the basement.

CLICK and the lights came on (Turn off flash light)
CLICK and the furnace came on
Click, Click, Click CLICK ....and the freezer, Fridge, Microwave, TV, Radio, Computer et-al came on.

Master card time

Outlet $$
Inlet $$
Plugs, sockets, panel and so on $$$$$

Warm comfortable wife..... (Recall furnace, it was after all Jan-1) PRICELESS.
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Old 03-25-2012, 07:21 PM   #17
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You don't need it often but sure is nice when you do!
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Old 03-27-2012, 05:10 PM   #18
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There is another added benefit to my generator setup.
My motorhome on shore power will only run one A/C but on generator power it will run both. Since I can now disconnect the generator from my motorhome all I needed to do to be able to run both A/C's on shore power was to identify the circuit for the second A/C. I already knew the 20 amp breaker on the generator supplied this circuit so using my volt meter I identified which circuit it was on the plug. I then made an adapter that the generator motorhome circuit plug could plug into and was able to connect it to a 20 amp extension cord. I plugged it into the same 30 amp circuit I had installed for the motorhome shore power. Now I can connect the motorhome to shore power and run both A/C's. They both ran fine on one 30 amp circuit.
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Old 03-27-2012, 06:11 PM   #19
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That is what the triple pole double throw transfer switch, I purchased off eBay does. It was less than $20. Actually the box I mounted it in was more expensive than the switch.

However, I wonder how they deal with homeowners who have alternative power such as solar or wind and DO feed power back into the grid and the power company buys it from them.
That's a mouthful....I knew there was something that was needed but didn't have a clue as to the correct nomenclature.
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Old 03-27-2012, 08:50 PM   #20
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If your switch is like the one in the link picture, I have a question. Does it come with a UL label or approval number on it? Methinks that could be a BIG insurance problem in the event something bad happens in the future.
Good luck and safe travels!
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Old 03-27-2012, 09:41 PM   #21
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No UL. If you think that's a problem then don't use it. But it is carrying the load (30 amps) no heating, and there are over current devices before and after. I'm not worried at all.
Michael
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Old 03-27-2012, 10:05 PM   #22
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Here is a website that has manual transfer switches for $100. This is the cheapest I could find. Panel/Link Manual Transfer Switch - indoor TCA0202D TCA0402D TCA1002D TCA0303D TCA0603D TCA1003D TCA1203D TCA0505D TCA1005D TCA1205D TCA0606D TCA1006D TCA1206D TCA1010D TCA1012D
They also have a lot of related information.
This would take the place of the one I uses.
Michael
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Old 03-27-2012, 10:34 PM   #23
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The transfer switch I posted above (#22) is nothing more than 2 breakers linked together so only one can be on at a time. You could do this inside your sub-panel by having 2 breakers opposite of one another, and fashion a link between them which would allow only one to be on at a time. Connect the mains to one of them and the generator to the other. The breakers would be back fed but that is permitted. Then you would just open your panel and switch those breakers to switch between generator or mains, no other transfer switch needed! Why didn't I think of that!!
Michael
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Old 03-28-2012, 07:04 PM   #24
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Generator Installation information from: mmcl26554






Here are my drawings and pictures, such as they are.
The first drawing is the relationship of the main panel, the transfer switch and the sub-panel.






The next drawing shows the connections to the motor home and transfer switch and changes to the shore power




Here is my sub-panel


Sub-panel open




Transfer switch with small sub-panel below with breakers before run to big sub-panel. I used this small sub-panel to give me a circuit in the garage and to protect the run from the transfer switch to the big sub-panel. The 30 amp breaker is not really necessary as you will have a breaker in the main panel to the transfer switch and the generator has its own breakers.


This is the plug connected to the transfer switch


This is the plug in the generator circuit. The plug is from the motor home and the socket is from the generator


This is the plug from the motor home generator circuit which plugs into the generator socket


This is the dryer socket and plug I installed in the shore power cable. The plug goes into the motor home shore power input.



Here is another picture of the dryer plug and socket

Cleopatra!
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Old 03-28-2012, 07:10 PM   #25
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Thanks Woodburner! Good job.
Michael
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Old 03-29-2012, 01:25 AM   #26
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The transfer switch I posted above (#22) is nothing more than 2 breakers linked together so only one can be on at a time. You could do this inside your sub-panel by having 2 breakers opposite of one another, and fashion a link between them which would allow only one to be on at a time. Connect the mains to one of them and the generator to the other. The breakers would be back fed but that is permitted. Then you would just open your panel and switch those breakers to switch between generator or mains, no other transfer switch needed! Why didn't I think of that!!
Michael
This is basically an interlock device. I have a family member that bought one from Generator InterLock Kit. You feed the gen back into the breaker panel by a set of breakers and a piece of metal prevents them from being turned on if the mains are on. It also prevents the mains from being turned on if those breakers are on. The cost is more then the disconnect the OP has installed but you would not have to install a sub and move your circuits to that sub panel, buy boxes for the switch and sub panel. So in the end the cost might not be as high as it originally seems.

Personally I have used the extension cord method to run some lights, fridge, freezer and space heaters on occasion. I normally will not even worry about the fridge and freezer till the power has been out at least a day. Although I lose power a couple times a year I have only been without power for more than two days twice in 10 years.


Mike
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Old 03-29-2012, 04:09 AM   #27
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A person could quite easily make there own plate for much less than the cost of the sub panel. You probably also make a plate which would make you shed some circuits before you could engage the generator breaker so you not overload it.
Michael
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Old 05-26-2012, 04:25 PM   #28
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During " THE ICE STORM" in Arkansas, we were without power for five days. We had extra propane for a catalitic heater, Alladin kerosene lamps, kept the refer, freezer, closed in the stick house, using the MH stove for cooking only. Read and listened to battery powered radio. On the fifth day, decided to fire the generator, to run the refer& freezer. That afternoon ZAPP POWER BACK ON!!
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