Generator Power output question for Electricians and the like... with sexy picture.

Jun 30, 2005
10,856
2,049
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outsiddah Boston
#1
I have a new propane powered electric generator....the Sportsman 4000LPG

<a href="http://www.buffalotools.com/generators/gen4000lpfaq.html" target="_blank"><img src="http://i46.tinypic.com/243kweu.jpg" border="0" alt="Sportsman GEN4000LPG"></a>

I bought this of course because I got sick of losing $200+ in food etc every time the power went out. It only has 2 120v 20amp outlets on it. There is no larger 240v locking outlet on it. What I'm working on is...

I want to run 2 12/3 extension cords
<a href="http://www.amazon.com/US-Wire-65100-100-Foot-Extension/dp/B002HWRS72" target="_blank"><img src="http://i49.tinypic.com/25pqyw5.jpg" border="0" alt="US-Wire-65100-100-Foot-Extension"></a>
from the 120v outlet to 2 male inlet receptacles on the outside of my house and have it pass through via romex to a standard outlet inside. This way I don't have to have a cord running through an open door or window in the winter. This will be an Isolated dedicated outlet that will only have juice if connected via the cords. No backfeeding here...
<a href="http://www.amazon.com/Leviton-5278-C-Receptacle-Industrial-Grounding/dp/B0017SOZ8C/" target="_blank"><img src="http://i45.tinypic.com/29xacna.jpg" border="0" alt="Leviton-5278-C-Receptacle-Industrial-Grounding"></a>


The biggest cost in this is probably the 110v inlet and the 12/3 all weather cord. I was wondering if i am wasting money running 2 12/3 cords (One from each outlet) to 2 inlets, each wired to 1/2 of the receptacle on the other side (1 top, one bottom) So I would plug the fridge into the top outlet or microwave if using (tested both, they work with it) and an APC LE1200 Line-R 1200VA Automatic Voltage Regulator

<a href="http://www.amazon.com/APC-LE1200-Automatic-Voltage-Regulator/dp/B00009RA60" target="_blank"><img src="http://i48.tinypic.com/282qjpz.jpg" border="0" alt="APC-LE1200-Automatic-Voltage-Regulator"></a>
Into the bottom outlet for running electronics.

When looking at the way the wiring is done below...

I believe I need 2 12/3 extension cords and 2 inlets or since it appears the circuit is shared but has 2 20A breakers that run independent of each other...I think if I ran one cord it would trip that 20amp breaker...My math shows that since it is 3250 Running Watts it would be 3250/120 or /115 or /110 would be 27A, 28A, 29.5A, greater than that 20A breaker on the unit panel...so to take full advantage I need to run 2 cords..correct?
 

weeniewawa

it's a man, baby!!!
May 21, 2005
12,076
1,267
593
Hell,California
#2
I would probably just kind of hard wire the entire thing in and put plugs on the hard wires going into the gen depending on how far you are going

but I always overkill everything. is a 12 GA cord enough for a freezer? you are showing a 100 foot cord
 

Sinn Fein

Infidel and White Interloper
Wackbag Staff
Aug 29, 2002
31,704
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Florida's Nature Coast
#3
Hmm... Seems like alot of work. I'd just stick with running cords under a door if possible.

I have a 6500W peak (5500W continuous) gasoline generator with four 120V outlets and one 240V twist-lock. I bought three generator-rated extension cords. Each one has three outlets on it. When we have an outage, I put the unit outside my garage and run the cords into the garage and then close the garage door. The first cord goes up to the kitchen for the fridge and a lamp. The second cord runs into my crawlspace so I can connect the well pump so we have water for flushing toilets, etc. The third cord just runs into the garage and I plug a UPS onto it so I can charge my laptop, cell phones, and the like.

When I get other projects out of the way, I am probably going to do something like this:

http://www.interlockkit.com/

I can just hook up the generator right to my electrical panel, then kill all the breakers except for the essential ones. There's no chance of backfeed. It'll be a heck of alot better during sustained outages and it's not an expensive solution. You could probably do the same thing.

How much did that thing cost and how long can it run on a 20lb propane cylinder?
 
Apr 30, 2011
35,772
94,696
358
CLT
#4
Your cord is underrated for generator you are using. When you add such a long cord into the equation you end up losing some capacity. Notice the cord clearly says 15amp or 1875 watts. The generator only really has one output they are just giving you the convenience of 2 outlets you can see how they are running in parallel but fuse both to act as basic safety. They are probably slow blow too to compensate for something like the fridge when the compressor starts up. You may overload the circuit with running the microwave on high (most only run on high but just shut off at intervals over cooking time for lower settings) and then the fridge kicks on. May not be a bad idea to pull power to the fridge while you microwave since its not like the food would spoil in that short period.

Not too sure about the AVR as it is underrated too, you werent going to hook the microwave and fridge into that were you? Most modern electronics have those parts built into them but a little extra protection isnt always bad.
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
Aug 23, 2002
43,045
9,852
848
#5
Eh I have an eu5000 honda and just run extention cords the two times a year I use it
 
Apr 30, 2011
35,772
94,696
358
CLT
#6
Found the amp calculator, you need to find a 10/3 cord if you want to do 20 amps at 100'. For 12/3 cords you are at 75' limit at 20 amps, so get a bigger cord or get a shorter one.

So if after running each power cord to the house then using a AVR rated at 2000+ per power cord would be more ideal.
 

the Streif

¡¡¡¡sıʞunɹɹɹɹɹɹɹℲ
Donator
Aug 25, 2002
15,222
6,035
941
In a hot tub having a snow ball fight.
#7
I have a Miller Bobcat gas powered welding machine in the back of my truck that gives me 10,500 continuous and 12,000 peak of 120/240VAC 88/44 A 60Hz.
 

maz

TRueWDTer
Feb 16, 2005
64,346
2,037
693
abu dhabi,pa.
#8
3500 Watt portable here
Saved my shit last year with that hurricane
But only because I got home just in time to save the mechanicals in the basement
Ran a cord to one of the pumps
Another hour and I woulda been buying new dryer , washer ,boiler and water heater
Saved my neighbors stuff too , after we found a long enough cord to run to his basement

One of these years I'm gonna get an Auto- On generator , running off the Natural Gas line here
All the houses here get water in the basement after long periods of rain

Gotta keep them sump pumps running

Not really concerned about anything else
Fuck the food
 
Jun 30, 2005
10,856
2,049
681
outsiddah Boston
#9
I can live with 75ft no prob...maybe even shorter. I just wanted to keep it as far away from the house for noise as possible. I bought it from home depot online and used a 10% off code they had...so I got it for $319 delivered! It was a steal. The regular 20lb tank will last 8-10 hours at 50% load. I have a 2 tanks right now for my grill, one is always full as a backup...I am looking into a 40Lb or maybe 60LB tank to fill and keep in the shed. That's why i went with propane. It's definitely quieter by several decibels and when you shut it down you let it cool and put it away...no fuel to drain, no stabil for the old gas...and apparently the propane is so clean the oil doesn't char up. It can last 4x as long as a gas generator.
My plan was 1 line of the 120v to the fridge and swapping that with the microwave when needed, but as you said never both at once. I tested it out and ran the microwave on high for 1 min and the thing kept going strong. It ran the fridge no prob. The only time i was able to kill the thing...and at that note that it was about to stall..as I had a 1500w space heater hooked up to one outlet and ran a power strip off the other and connected a hair dryer. When i threw it to the high heat setting with both running it started to crap out but i just depressed the cool button on it and it returned to normal. I didn't adjust the choke though which can apparently give you some extra juice..
I ran a volt meter off the power strip while doing all this and shot a video of it to document it's performance because I couldn't find any good reviews. I did and unboxing and threw it up on youtube already.
As for the voltage regulator that would only be for plugging in electronics..TV/Laptop cellphone etc...
If you are interested watch the videos...if you are looking for thrills and excitement try a different video...
[YT]Rnm69dS1XCI[/YT]
 

maz

TRueWDTer
Feb 16, 2005
64,346
2,037
693
abu dhabi,pa.
#10
I understand it was for testing purposes
But the hair dryer scenario in a power outage situation made me laugh
 

maz

TRueWDTer
Feb 16, 2005
64,346
2,037
693
abu dhabi,pa.
#11
Need some Tits in that vid , TFR

As for the Ground wire
I hook mine up to the Cyclone fence out back
 

maz

TRueWDTer
Feb 16, 2005
64,346
2,037
693
abu dhabi,pa.
#12
I think you made a good purchase btw

Nice to have some power when things get tough
 
Jun 30, 2005
10,856
2,049
681
outsiddah Boston
#13
Yeah...major boring video, but it's what you want to see if you are buying it...You can hear my neighbors damn rooster in one of them. The thing crows when I turn on the rear flood light at 3am to let the dog out..
 
Apr 30, 2011
35,772
94,696
358
CLT
#14
Unboxing videos are an interesting phenomenon they are everywhere now. Thanks for keeping yours short and to the point most people just drone on about nonsense in most unboxings.

As far as the loading it down goes, items based on watts like generators or audio amplifiers there is a good bit of unrealistic headroom in what manufacturers state. So your generator may be more realistic with a load of 2500-3000 watts continuous. When you measured voltage under load, without load were you getting decent readings? Its tricky with some devices as their load can vary at different times

Regardless the fact that this unit was $320 is a damn good price and only has to work a few times to pay for itself.
 

whiskeyguy

PR representative for Drunk Whiskeyguy.
Donator
Jan 12, 2010
36,573
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Northern California
#15
Unboxing videos are an interesting phenomenon they are everywhere now. Thanks for keeping yours short and to the point most people just drone on about nonsense in most unboxings.
If I'm thinking about buying something I could watch an hour of unboxing videos about that product... and I don't really understand why. I've compared it to a type of consumer porn... instead of buying the product and enjoying it yourself, you watch someone else enjoy it and live vicariously through them.
 
Dec 8, 2004
49,479
21,306
693
Maine
#17
I got one of these:



Electrical power: 6500 running watts including 8125 surge watts of power. Includes four (4) GFCI 120 V outlets, one (1) twist lock 120/240 V outet plus a 12V DC battery charger. And it has a Honda engine.

I can pretty much run everything with it...

I was going to go the extension cord route but due to the length of our house (132'... and things like the effluent pump (pumps waste water into the septic field) had to go for a whole house plug thing. Sucky thing is the building has two meters so I only power the front (where the apartment was).

One good thing about two meters is when the power comes back on the lights on the back of the house turn on.

One tip do try to haul it out every few months and run it... and use a good quality fuel stabilizer (not Stabil as that only lasts for about 3 months).
 

d0uche_n0zzle

**Negative_Creep**
Sep 15, 2004
46,851
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F.U.B.A.R
#18
Star Tron is the best gasoline additive. Sucks up all the water and makes genny's purr like a kitty.
 
Dec 8, 2004
49,479
21,306
693
Maine
#19
Oh and keep a couple of spark plugs on hand... as when the power goes out around (like during that ice storm a few years ago) the stores close down.
 
Dec 8, 2004
49,479
21,306
693
Maine
#22
37.5... I think...

I did buy a big ass chain for it... and put some heavy duty hook thing on the side of the house with those non-removable screws... oh and during power outages I will open carry... which is legal in this state.
 

d0uche_n0zzle

**Negative_Creep**
Sep 15, 2004
46,851
6,936
763
F.U.B.A.R
#23
I always carry a knife and have a boom stick close by during 'transitional' periods of time.
 

Sinn Fein

Infidel and White Interloper
Wackbag Staff
Aug 29, 2002
31,704
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898
Florida's Nature Coast
#25
When I do the generator interlock kit, I'll mount the twist-lock outlet on the outside wall of my garage behind the 6' vinyl fence where two dogs with a combined weight of 230 lbs have free roam.