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Back Up Generators

Diver43Diver43 Senior MemberPosts: 10,922 Senior Member
Living in South Florida we have to be ready for storms this time of year.
My generator is getting old and honestly I have neglected it the last few years.
There are brands out there that I have never heard of before and it seems technology has made some strides.
What I need is to keep the kitchen refrigerator, freezer in the garage running and a few lights and tv.

I am hoping to stay in the 450-650 range. Of course less if possible.

Any suggestions? 
Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5

Replies

  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 16,928 Senior Member
    Yep...go to Tractor Supply...you can get all the generator you need for about $400.00....I bought my Champion 4500 Watt generator on sale for $375.00 ....Ran my house on it for 9 days a couple of years ago...lights, freezer, refrigerator and tv...I'm having a transfer switch wired into the house so I can run the well pump too.
    .
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • SpkSpk Senior Member Posts: 3,969 Senior Member
    Find out what your current requirements are. How much current (amps) does your equipment need. (Should be listed on the equipment) from that you'll know roughly your power needs, then double it for safe measure. I'm guessing both your frig and freezer were designed for residential outlets so less than 1875 watts each, so a 4Kw generator would do the trick (plus a few lights and maybe a TV also 👍). Now the only question is gas or propane?

    Here's a generator for your consideration, propane power.
    $369

    Also available in a gasoline model at an even lower price and (4) 120 volt outlets.
    $319

    Of course, there's pricer ones available. You'll have to decide what's in your best interest (Reliability,  noise level, run time, fuel efficiency, etc.)
    Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience -- Mark Twain
    How easy it is to make people believe a lie, and [how] hard it is to undo that work again! -- Mark Twain

  • zorbazorba Senior Member Posts: 23,667 Senior Member
    Diver43 said:
    Living in South Florida we have to be ready for storms this time of year.
    My generator is getting old and honestly I have neglected it the last few years.
    There are brands out there that I have never heard of before and it seems technology has made some strides.
    What I need is to keep the kitchen refrigerator, freezer in the garage running and a few lights and tv.

    I am hoping to stay in the 450-650 range. Of course less if possible.

    Any suggestions? 
    In Florida? Get a whole house Generac so you can run the damn air conditioner!
    -Zorba, "The Veiled Male"

    "If you get it and didn't work for it, someone else worked for it and didn't get it..."
  • Diver43Diver43 Senior Member Posts: 10,922 Senior Member
    zorba said:
    Diver43 said:
    Living in South Florida we have to be ready for storms this time of year.
    My generator is getting old and honestly I have neglected it the last few years.
    There are brands out there that I have never heard of before and it seems technology has made some strides.
    What I need is to keep the kitchen refrigerator, freezer in the garage running and a few lights and tv.

    I am hoping to stay in the 450-650 range. Of course less if possible.

    Any suggestions? 
    In Florida? Get a whole house Generac so you can run the damn air conditioner!
    If this was my forever home I would visit that idea again. But once we retire we are out if here.  I purchased the generator I have now after Wilma used from a neighbor.  My next house further North will be set up properly.
    I had not planned to live here this long.
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5
  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 2,122 Senior Member
    So far I have been pleased with my Troy-Bilt 10kw surge, 7kw continuous gasoline generator.  I will explain the careful thought process that went into selecting it.  After 3 days without power due to one of the recent hurricanes (don't remember which one, about 2 years ago), we walked into the local Lowe's and found they had just received a shipment of generators and were selling them for $900.  Didn't have the cash, but it only took 10 minutes to get approved for a Lowe's credit card with more than enough credit line to buy the generator.  Yes, we carefully considered the fact that we were tired of being without power and had an opportunity to do something about it right then.  :D
  • Make_My_DayMake_My_Day Senior Member Posts: 7,671 Senior Member
    I have 2 portables. One is 17.5 KW continuous and the other is 5.5 KW continuous. Last year I had an electrician rig up two outdoor transfer switches, one with a 30 amp plug-in and the other a 50 amp plug-in. During a power outage I connect the two outdoor switches to the 17.5 KW unit, and that powers everything except the AC, Hot water heater and stove. The other 5.5 KW generator is used to connect to the hot water heater through a single use transfer switch, which I wired up myself, using information gotten from an electrician at Lowes. I didn't buy a whole-house unit because this would have been a lot more money than I wanted to spend. A whole-house Generac unit would have cost around $4500 plus installation and Propane gas supply.
    JOE MCCARTHY WAS RIGHT:
    THE DEMOCRATS ARE THE NEW COMMUNISTS!
  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 2,122 Senior Member
    edited August 11 #8
    My next house will have the Generac whole house unit.  It will be the last house I intend to buy and one of my co-workers is a Generac dealer as a side hustle.  I don't plan on staying in the current house more than 18-24 months so I just installed a 4 prong 208-230v 30 amp locking receptacle in the main panel and put matching plugs on both ends of a 50' piece of 10 ga. SJ cord.  That way I can wheel my generator out to the middle of the back yard and fire it up. 
  • ilove22silove22s Senior Member Posts: 1,393 Senior Member
    fwiw,

    i would as mentioned look at the load requirements for your major appliances.

    Also, if you consider when you may need the generator is during a power outage or when some disaster hits.  

    If you are also handy and will be doing some home repairs/fixes after the disaster, you may want to take into account any tools/equipment that maybe used.  Chances are those will be small potatoes compared to an HVAC, but it wont hurt to look at the numbers.

    and also as mentioned, i would pad that number whatever it is.


    The ears never lie.

    - Don Burt
  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 2,122 Senior Member
    My generator has a handy digital readout that shows exactly what percentage of the generator's capacity is being used by the load.  During the load test I did last week I had everything running I plan to run on a generator (including the HVAC system) and was at 47% capacity.
  • Diver43Diver43 Senior Member Posts: 10,922 Senior Member
    that is impressive
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5
  • 10canyon5310canyon53 Member Posts: 2,122 Senior Member
    It's the HVAC system that allows me to do that.  ;)
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