Do you have a generator?

the_Grinchthe_Grinch Member Posts: 4,164 ■■■■■■■■■■
A number of people in my neighborhood have generators and during the power outage were flying high while the rest of us suffer. I'm under the impression that this winter isn't going to be great and I am thinking it might be time to purchase a generator to at least run our fridge and freezer. Not going to lie, will probably get one TV, cablebox, and modem running as well. Anyone have this setup? Was it hard to do? I wonder about the wiring into the home. I am looking at this generator:

Honda Power Equipment - EU2000i

I know I need to calculate how much power is required for each device to make sure that I have the right tool for the job. But other then that I am clueless, thanks in advance!
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Comments

  • PsoasmanPsoasman Senior Member Member Posts: 2,687 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I have a Powerhorse 9 KW generator sitting in my shed for emergencies. I got a 10 gauge cable running from the generator that I can use for larger appliances and some smaller cords for household devices.

    Honda generators are very good, but very expensive. I think you'll need more power than this one will provide. Honda's site has a wattage calculator, see results below:

    Item Qty Starting Wattage Running Wattage
    Refrigerator or Freezer (Energy Star) 1 1200 192
    Television 1 120 120
    Computer 1 250 250
    Monitor (LCD style) 1 30 30
    Printer 1 600 600
    Total 2200 1192

    My parent's have a 13 KW generator hard-wired into their house with a transfer switch. It was expensive, but if your power goes out every winter for a week at a time, it's worth it, especially if you have kids.
  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Member Posts: 4,164 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Thanks for the info! Yeah will definitely have to do my homework on this topic. I'm also looking into maybe using propane, but again need to do the research first. Thanks again!
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  • PsoasmanPsoasman Senior Member Member Posts: 2,687 ■■■■■■■■■□
    If you are going to get a propane tank for the generator, then get a decent sized generator and tank. My parents got a 125 gallon tank and that will last 1 week using the generator about 12-14 hours/day.

    You will need to have the tank placed far enough away from the generator if you get it hard-wired to your house - check the state regs. In WA state, we had to have it 20 feet away and you'll need to dig a 2 foot deep trench to bury the fuel line, so the cold doesn't affect the line. If you aren't going to hard-wire it, then I'd just get some extra gas cans and that should work.
  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Member Posts: 4,164 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Awesome, thanks for the advice man! Yeah I will have to look at the state regs for sure (New Jersey loves regulating things). Generally we only lose power for about 4 to 8 hours, only once have we been without power for 36 hours. Power company claims no one called and said there was an issue, yet we received a letter stating not to call the police in the event of a power failure if not an emergency. Thanks again!
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  • EveryoneEveryone Member Posts: 1,661
    The power has only gone out once in the 2.5 years I've lived here, and it was only for a few hours. It went out after a tornado came within 2 miles of my house and did a little damage to my house.

    Really not enough to justify a generator, although there were thousands without power for about a week not far from me a couple times this year.

    The company I work for makes generators, they have one that will do 18kW off of NG, and 22kW off LP, with automatic cut-over when a power outage is detected. Only around $4k for it. I wonder if I could get a discount. :p
  • rsuttonrsutton Member Posts: 1,029 ■■■■■□□□□□
    Don't have one for my house, when the power goes out it's campin time.
  • veritas_libertasveritas_libertas CISSP, GIAC x5, CompTIA x5 Greenville, SC USAMember Posts: 5,735 ■■■■■■■■■■
    I've thought about getting one. When I lived in Michigan we had a major windstorm, Macroburst, and I was glad we had one. Be warned that when it's a disaster people will try to steal your generator. Lock it down with chains.
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  • AkaricloudAkaricloud Member Posts: 938
    Ours is just wired with a high gauge extension cord routed to a circuit breaker. When the power goes out, flip off the main(don't want to backfeed), pop that breaker in an empty slot and keep on whatever you want to run from the generator. It's really nice to be able to use anything in the house even if it's not all at once.
  • PhoneGuyPhoneGuy Member Posts: 11 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I have a 6500 watt generator for the house with an manual transfer switch. My generator is gasoline powered and I keep enough gas around to run the generator for a couple days. For me this size allows me to run everything in the house with the exception of the electric oven. I live in the country so with no electricity I have no water either. I don't often need it as usually outages are under a couple hours. It is still a very comforting thing to have around.

    IF YOU GET ONE. PLEASE BE VERY VERY CAREFUL NOT TO BACKFEED INTO THE POWER GRID. YOU DONT WANT TO HAVE A DEAD LINEMAN ON YOUR MIND FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE.
  • JDMurrayJDMurray MSIT InfoSec, CISSP, SSCP, GSEC, EnCE, C|EH, CySA+, PenTest+, CASP+, Security+ Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 11,665 Admin
    So is anybody concerned that, when in a prolonged disaster, someone will hear your generator running and try to take it away from you?

    I don't have a generator, but I do have a pool filled with lots of clean water, which could come in very handy during a prolonged disaster. I've often wondered how I would go about "defending it" in a desperate situation (assuming the city utilities department didn't pull a tanker truck up into my driveway and take all my pool water away first).
  • demonfurbiedemonfurbie Member Posts: 1,819
    JDMurray wrote: »
    So is anybody concerned that, when in a prolonged disaster, someone will hear your generator running and try to take it away from you?

    I don't have a generator, but I do have a pool filled with lots of clean water, which could come in very handy during a prolonged disaster. I've often wondered how I would go about "defending it" in a desperate situation (assuming the city utilities department didn't pull a tanker truck up into my driveway and take all my pool water away first).

    all the info sec guys thing the same

    i was thinking why not get a battery bank and inverters for quite running and solar panels for trickle charging
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  • veritas_libertasveritas_libertas CISSP, GIAC x5, CompTIA x5 Greenville, SC USAMember Posts: 5,735 ■■■■■■■■■■
    JDMurray wrote: »
    So is anybody concerned that, when in a prolonged disaster, someone will hear your generator running and try to take it away from you?

    I don't have a generator, but I do have a pool filled with lots of clean water, which could come in very handy during a prolonged disaster. I've often wondered how I would go about "defending it" in a desperate situation (assuming the city utilities department didn't pull a tanker truck up into my driveway and take all my pool water away first).

    Yes! This is a concern that should be taken seriously, especially if you live in the city. Don't make it visible, and don't run it if you don't have to. Solar Cells might be a good option if you can afford to have them installed. I've been thinking about survival needs lately. Growing a garden has become a hobby as of late.
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  • exampasserexampasser Member Posts: 718 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I have a 3550 watts(running) Troy-bilt generator that I got in 2005. I needed it on Sunday when my power went out for 26 hours due to the hurricane and powered my refrigerator and my neighbor's fridge. I had to make sure that bacon didn't go bad :) I'm glad it started up as I haven't ran it for years.

    A key thing to point out is that portability is an issue as you go up in generator size, particularly when you need to move it on and off an elevated surface. Even my smaller generator is a pain to get in and out of my storage room as it weights about 100 pounds (without gas in the tank.)
  • CodeBloxCodeBlox Member Posts: 1,363
    I've thought about getting one. When I lived in Michigan we had a major windstorm, Macroburst, and I was glad we had one. Be warned that when it's a major disaster people will try to steal your generator. Lock it down with chains.
    Lol some generators that belonged to the city were stolen a few years back. Unrestrained generators powering the traffic lights.
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  • the_Grinchthe_Grinch Member Posts: 4,164 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Awesome advice from everyone, there is a lot to consider with all of this. I was aiming for something portable, though I am considering building a shed (with a raised platform and exhaust) so I can lock up the generator just in case. If they want to take the whole shed, well not a whole lot I can do about that.

    veritas_libertas - seems you're into the emergency scenarios, so I will give you a couple resources I have seen read/watch recently:

    Amazon.com: Emergency: This Book Will Save Your Life (9780060898779): Neil Strauss: Books - Great book! It has tips throughout, but mainly covers the authors trip to becoming an emergency geek.

    Amazon.com: Confronting Collapse: The Crisis of Energy and Money in a Post Peak Oil World (9781603582643): Michael C. Ruppert, Colin Campbell Ph.D.: Books - Another good book, once you get past all the numbers he throws at you. There is also a documentary that you can watch related to the book. The author has a website where he talks about preparing for the coming collapse. I wasn't going to spend the money to join, but it is interesting none the less.

    History Channel - They had a two hour special where they covered what would happen if a global diaster took place (didn't specify what type) and everyone had to leave the cities. It was pretty good and they explain that a skill to have would be medical related (EMT, Paramedic (perferred), Nurse) as that would be the best thing to barter with.

    I had to create an incident response plan for my family for a college course. Had to cover 3 days (water, food, etc) and a week (water, food, escape plan). Ultimately I discovered given my location, I have big problems. Southern New Jersey has a nuclear plant (I'm in the instant death zone) and only ways out are by bridge. Oh well...
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  • veritas_libertasveritas_libertas CISSP, GIAC x5, CompTIA x5 Greenville, SC USAMember Posts: 5,735 ■■■■■■■■■■
    I was an active ARES/RACES member for a while. I'm less involved now since I have a family. I haven't even installed my radio since I moved to SC.
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