Portable generator powering most of house in power outages.

   #1  

J.Wal

Silver Member
Joined
Dec 1, 2011
Messages
174
Location
Millington TN
Tractor
Kubota Grand L3130
Really excited to finally get everything set up. Figured I would share my setup with everyone. Using a portable generator to back feed panel. Safety panel interlocks in place!

Total cost right at $2,570

I often loose power due to living so far out in the country. Until now I have had to run extension cords through the house and used a 3,050 watt generator to power an AC window unit, WiFi, fridge/ freezer, deep freezer, phone chargers. Real pain to run all the cords and all that.

So to solve all this I purchased a Champion 9,200 watt ( model 100110) generator, 2 Geninterlock.com interlocks ( specific to needs), 2 extension cords,One for 50 amp house feed, one for 30 amp for shop/ apartment over shop.

Generator $1000 Lowe’s
Electrical work $1000
Generator interlocks $69 and $64 plus shipping
50 amp 10’ cord and inlet box $160
Inlet box for shop $43
30 amp 100’ cord for generator to shop/ apartment $180
Power back alarm $45

The generator interlocks are the most important part of the setup IMO. This setup requires a 2 pole 50 amp breaker to be placed in the breaker box. The interlock kit makes it impossible to have both the main breaker and generator breaker on at the same time. It will only allow one or the other at a time. This prevents the generator for back feeding the main power lines or the generator and main line both attempting to power the house at the same time.

I did have to replace my electric water heater with natural gas so that I could free up 2 poles in my breaker box. That was extra cost but not required by most folks.

So, power goes out, I turn on the power back alarm ( notices me when main line is reenergized) and turn off the main breaker and all other breakers off.... go to garage and plug up house side of extension cord and thread the collar onto the inlet box so it can’t be pulled out. Plug the other bed into generator. Next I start generator and go back to breaker box. I double check the main is off, slide the interlock over and turn the generator breaker on. I then turn on all 110 breakers one at a time with a pause between them to allow the generator to recover for items coming on line.

I walked my wife through setup and break down of this tonight. I also printed off instructions.

I will have to add instructions for running the 100’ cord across to the inlet box on shop. It will allow me to power the apartment over the shop for my renter.

The champion 9,200 watt is a beast for less than $1000! I turned on every light in the house, 4 ceiling fans, 1 deep freezer, 1 fridge/ freezer, 1 110 window unit, one large eye on cook top, and 1,000 watt microwave and was only pulling 3 to 5 power bars of the 7 available. I consider this to be a overall great investment. Will make life much easer!

I do plan to get a 30 gallon drum to store fuel in. Every 6 months I will fill my truck up from the drum and refill it with fresh fuel.
Parts list
Generator
9200-Running-Watt Portable Generator with Engine Shop Champion Power Equipment 92-Running-Watt Portable Generator with Engine at Lowes.com

Power back alarm
Reliance Controls Corporation THP108... Amazon.com: Reliance Controls Corporation THP18 PowerBACK! Mains Return Alarm: Home Improvement

50 amp 10’ power cord and inlet
Conntek GIB1450-015 50 Amp... Amazon.com: Conntek GIB145-15 5 Amp DUO-RainSeal Kit NEMA 14-5P 4 Prong Temporary Power Cord with Inlet Box, 15': Garden & Outdoor

Shop 30 amp inlet box ( bought on amazon)
30 Amp Generator Inlet Box, AI-PB30 Power Cord Twist Lock Receptacle | eBay

30amp 100’ cord for shop to generator at house
L14-3 Generator Extension Cords

Generator interlock site
https://www.geninterlock.com

7D1CBFA4-2EAB-4EF5-AC72-952DC176D110.jpeg

5507FC7F-6405-45B6-968C-75CB0B067CC7.jpeg
 
   #3  

s219

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Dec 7, 2011
Messages
8,361
Location
Virginia USA
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Kubota L3200, Deere X380, Kubota RTV-X
Nice writeup, thanks.

If you're like me, just installing a permanent setup will guarantee you have no more power outages.

Been almost 5 years since I installed a diesel generator that backfeeds into main panel with a breaker and interlock like you have. Since then, we haven't had any power outages that have lasted more than about 15 minutes.

Reminds me, I need to go fire up the generator for it's periodic test run.
 
   #4  

TheMan419

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Dec 6, 2015
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2,118
Location
Indiana
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New Holland Boomer 24
Yeah generator installation is a great way to make sure you have few power outages. Prior home owners said power went out all the time. We wired for generator and have had to use it once in 4 years.
 
   #5  

oosik

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Aug 22, 2012
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15,627
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AMBER, WA
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2009 Kubota M6040
Dam - every time I read a new thread about home generators it makes me realize how fortunate we are here to have a really pro-active electric Co-Op.

I like to brag on them - - 36+ years out here and the longest outage - 28 hours. And its been years and years since there has been a single outage.

Average outage duration - two hours and fifteen minutes.

To top this all off - - our electric rate is one of the lowest in the nation - - - 6.5 cents per kilowatt hour.
 
   #6  

thepumpguysc

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Apr 14, 2010
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South Carolina
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Injection Pump Rebuilder
My power used to go out if the wind was blowing.. yes, that often.. but in the last 10 years, things have been built out & a lot more people have moved in, so they strengthened the infrastructure..
I used to rely on an old PowerBack 5250 gen. & it powered my WHOLE house.. loved it..
But I found a sale on a NEW 10k DUEL FUEL gen on the net for 499.00 w/ free freight delivery & couldn't pass it up..
Since buying it over a year ago, the power hasn't gone out ONCE.. Lol
 
   #7  

PILOON

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Aug 26, 2004
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North of Mtl,Que,Can (Ste Adele)
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MT180D
My power used to go out if the wind was blowing.. yes, that often.. but in the last 10 years, things have been built out & a lot more people have moved in, so they strengthened the infrastructure..
I used to rely on an old PowerBack 5250 gen. & it powered my WHOLE house.. loved it..
But I found a sale on a NEW 10k DUEL FUEL gen on the net for 499.00 w/ free freight delivery & couldn't pass it up..
Since buying it over a year ago, the power hasn't gone out ONCE.. Lol

Call that INSURANCE!
 
   #8  

TractorGuy

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Sep 15, 2013
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N. FL
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John Deere 4310 CUT, Ford New Holland 575E Industrial Backhoe, John Deere F725 Front Mount Mower
Nice write up J.Wal



Nice writeup, thanks.

If you're like me, just installing a permanent setup will guarantee you have no more power outages.

Been almost 5 years since I installed a diesel generator that backfeeds into main panel with a breaker and interlock like you have. Since then, we haven't had any power outages that have lasted more than about 15 minutes.

Reminds me, I need to go fire up the generator for it's periodic test run.

Wish I had your luck. Installed my diesel generator a year and a half ago and have logged over 50 hours of outages and testing. We have had a wet rainy year and seems every storm brings another outage. I leave mine connected so I just have to flip a few breakers and start it up but if it's raining I have to go out in it. I keep two 55 gallon drums of diesel on hand that I rotate through my tractors 2 or 3 times a year. My unit sips fuel so I would be good for over a week if we had another hurricane outage.
 
   #9  

check

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Sep 26, 2008
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3,300
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Dorset (cottage country) and Toronto, Ontario, Can
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2009 Kubota BX25
Our power back on alarm – what a great idea! I checked out the website, however, and the reviews for that particular one we’re a bit iffy. Will have to pursue this, because we have a portable generator for our rental cottage, and I am wondering how the renters can tell when the power is back on?

By the way, those safety switches ate just great, and so very, very simple. On ours, it is a circle rotates back-and-forth between the main power and the generator power. It has only one slot in it, so it will not allow both switches to be on at the same time.

I love clever technology, especially when it is simple, mechanical, and totally reliable!

Now, let us see what I can find out about a reliable power back on alarm…
 
   #10  

3930dave

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Dec 8, 2007
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Canada
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Ford 3930
Nicely done JW.

As guys have commented, you may well now see the flip-side of Murphy's Law :thumbsup:. Either way, you win.

2 minor points..... s219 was heading to run his for exercise - esp. if you don't have regular outages, make sure to run your gen at least every 3 months - I think of it as "going to the gym" - good for keeping things limbered up.

On it's own, pump gas tends to deteriorate after about 30 days. Rotating fuel is always a good idea, but I'd strongly recommend using a fuel stabilizer in your gasoline all the time. Any stabilizer should be good for at least a year, and if your gen has a metal tank, read up on Stabil 360 if you haven't come across it before. If available, IMO it's worth buying ethanol free fuel.

^ May be preaching to the choir :), but those 2 points have caused plenty of people grief.

You sound to be pretty well set up already, but if you like to read up on what other people have done, drop by this thread:

https://www.tractorbynet.com/forums/oil-fuel-lubricants/271843-your-last-generator-maintenance-run.html

I started it a few years ago, primarily to remind myself to exercise my gens. Along the way, it has accumulated a lot of interesting installation info from all sorts of people.

Rgds, D.
 
 
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