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Dealing with power outages-lessons learned?

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by Badfish740, Nov 2, 2011.

  1. btuser

    btuser Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2009
    Messages:
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    Loc:
    The island of Rhum Boogie
    Check to make sure your loads are balanced on each phase of your generator. If you've got the meters on the transfer switch start the microwave while the oil burner is running (they may both be on the same phase and not enough load on the other side) and see how out of whack it gets.

    As far as the boiler contol I had the same issue with my Tekmar 260 not working on the old genset. Check your voltage at the control to see if its high enough (while you're at it check it at an outlet) to see if its just too low. I was getting 105vac (barely enough) at the control but it would drop whenever the burner would kick on and that would shut down the control again. Click, click over and over. You've got a larger genset with plenty of pwer so that may not be it. Are you trying to use the idle control per chance?

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  2. willworkforwood

    willworkforwood Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2009
    Messages:
    459
    Loc:
    Central Ma
    I balanced the circuits well, and the Reliance meters show a good, consistent split between the two phases. No idle control in use. The voltage reads 124 at the genset outlet, and I figured it wouldn't be a good idea to try to adjust it higher. As an aside, I haven't found any doc how to adjust the AVR on these B&S gensets - maybe they don't have an adjust capability? Outside of the wood boiler controller, everything runs fine, even the 240 well pump which takes 6600 surge watts. But all of our other electronics are fairly old, and I'm not concerned if something gets fried - most are getting ready to be replaced anyway. What I'm trying to figure out is if the distorted power is reducing the life of motors, and if so, by how much. I would like to find out it's just a nit, and be able to fuggadaboutit. And, just a reminder to everyone running gensets during the past week - probably time to take it to Jiffylube for an oil change ;-) . I'm using syn 5w-30, which seems to be the overwhelming favorite for running in colder climates.
  3. btuser

    btuser Minister of Fire

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    2,026
    Loc:
    The island of Rhum Boogie
    Is the voltage steady or does it fluxuate? Mine was running up + down (sure sign the AVR needed replacing) and I needed a bigger genset anyway so I sold + traded up. The AVR may not be adjustable so ou may want to consider a small UPS and then back out to the control. Use the battery to filter the power.
  4. ssupercoolss

    ssupercoolss Member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2008
    Messages:
    223
    Loc:
    southeast pa
    if you recently had your power go out, and are thinking to yourself, "i should get a generator", do it now. dont procrastinate any longer, its a worthwhile expenditure.

    run your generator every month or so, maybe more frequently if you are anal, like me. run it with a load on it. generators that sit for long peirods can turn into, well just an engine that doesnt produce any electricity. google "flashing a generator" for the fix. not something you want to be doing when the power is out. as said the kill-o-watt meter is a great device for checking proper voltage and hertz.
  5. cwill

    cwill Member

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2010
    Messages:
    182
    Loc:
    W. MI
    One thing i noticed that nobody has mentioned was pet food. If you have a pet make sure you have enough dog/cat food for them, extra water as well.
  6. btuser

    btuser Minister of Fire

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    2,026
    Loc:
    The island of Rhum Boogie

    If the power stays out long enough the pets ARE food.

    MWAHHHAAHAAHAAA!!!! (that's my evil laugh)
  7. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2009
    Messages:
    5,224
    Loc:
    Croton-on-Hudson, suburbs of NYC
    Meat does stay fresh on the hoof.
  8. woodmeister

    woodmeister New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    Messages:
    155
    Loc:
    lower ct. river
    Like the boy scouts motto says "be prepared" plenty of good ideas here the one thing I haven't seen here is how to deal the incessant whining. It got to the point where you couldn't watch the news or listen to the radio. What ever happened to tough old New Englanders? Generator + woodpile + bourbon = no worries.
  9. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    15,072
    Loc:
    Unity/Bangor, Maine
    Correction . . . up this away it's either generator + woodpile + Budweiser = no worries OR generator + woodpile + Allen's Coffee Brandy = no worries. ;) :)
  10. HeatsTwice

    HeatsTwice Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2008
    Messages:
    537
    Loc:
    Santa Rosa, California
    This was posted on one of the other forums:

    http://www.oregonscientificstore.co...ic- ECO-Clima-Control-Weather-Monitor.product

    I will probably buy one myself.
  11. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2005
    Messages:
    6,538
    Loc:
    Sand Lake, NY
    Would the wireless transmitters work from inside a fridge or freezer?
    The simple wired thermometers are pretty cheap, as I recall.

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