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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 04:39 PM Thread Starter
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Storms

Well, being in SE Ohio, we got our share of the storms last night. No power, restoration "predicted" tomorrow by 6PM. A "regular" Generac 7500W is powering everything we need, note, not an inverter type. Two computers, router, flat screen tv, misc lights, upright freezer, side by side frig, etc. Everything is running happily on non inverter power. This is posted just as a comment for those who feel they need inverter gensets for their home electronics. JMHO.


Storms aren't over, be safe folks,


Ev
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 07:05 PM
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Your electronics are better off with the Generac. Inductive generators produce sine wave AC practically identical to what comes over the power lines. (assuming they are functioning properly) Inverters produce something more akin to square wave AC, which by electrical power standards is very dirty, and has a lot more potential to blitz out electronics. Strange but true.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-02-2017, 12:32 AM
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There are actually two sides to this. The Generac will indeed produce a good "true sine" and as long as the unit is in good working order and not over loaded, it will not harm your electronics. And yes "square wave" or " modified wave" is not good for most electronics as it "simulates" the wave pattern in a step fashion and is considered to be "dirty power".

But, if you have a "true sine" inverter type generator, it will put out the same quality power as the grid will.

The biggest difference between a "regular" generator and
a "inverter" type are the electronics in the "inverter" type generator.
The built in electronics will compensate for over loads and hard starts without compromising the voltage or
Hz level. If either of these get pushed to low from a large load on a regular generator from being bogged down on a hard load or start it could damage your sensitive electronics. As a inverter type will simply shut down the AC feed like a switch so as not to damage your electronics.

I personally agree with the first poster in that you don't really need a "inverter type" generator unless noise is a big
issue. The other benefit of a "inverter type" generator is the fuel savings. Regular generators cannot compete in these two fields. But that being said, "inverter type" generators cost a lot more than a regular gen set and most do not go above 3000 watts unless you tie two together. And that more than doubles a very expensive gen set setup.
And that of course smokes your gas savings right there.

A good generator with an electronic voltage regulator will do the job nicely as long as you measure your loads
before purchasing and make sure the generator is big enough to not only handle your loads but also handle the
starting surges without bogging it down to a dangerous level.

I have a Generac Primepact 66Lp "liquid propane" generator and it produces perfect 120 across both legs and provides
a good sine wave for all my electronic needs. It was originally made for motor home use but has been converted for my backup. Generac has a good name for it's self and for many good reasons.

If your looking for a good gen set then look for one that has an oil filter and pump system. They are the best and are built like a regular car or truck motor in it's lube set up. The cheaper gen sets have neither of these and use a "splash"
oil system that uses the crank case to dip and splash oil into the rest of the motor. While effective, it's much less durable and as such, is used in lower quality motors because they are cheaper to build.

Also, if you can find one, a lower rpm gen set (2800rpm) vs. (3600rpm) generator will not only last longer but are much quieter than the 3600 rpm versions. They are more expensive usually, but if found used and in good condition are well worth the money. Mine actually runs the motor at a lower rpm and then through a pulley belt system up's the rpm to 3600 on the stator side. This is a very quiet set up and is considerably quieter than my older portable 5500 watt Generac I had a few years ago. It also stops all the vibrations of the motor from traveling through the stator side and is bound to help keep the bearing from wearing out so fast.

One more thing to look for if searching for a gen set is to find one with more than one cylinder. Over head valves are pretty much the norm now but having two cylinders will lessen the load on the motor and they are built stronger.

Chilling in the desert Sun
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-02-2017, 10:47 AM Thread Starter
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Handyman, excellent post! Good discussion of "regular" vs inverter type gensets. I would respectfully disagree with a couple of points. "Oil filter and pump system" you're into a larger unit with two cylinders which translates to more KW and $$ than most of us need or want to spend for occasional use. e.g. the 7500W I mentioned has sat in the barn for three years as we haven't had an extended outage, now we're going into day two and it's busily generating on the front porch as we speak. Personally, don't want to spend $2,000+ to have something sit in the barn, I think I spent about $650 for it and it powers everything I need. The "splash" type lube system you mention has been around for a long time and provided you change oil religously, will last a long time. I have several in the barn on tillers, log splitter, snowblower, etc. some of those engines are 25 years old and still run fine. I have a lawn tractor that's a '82, 12HP, splash lubrication which has never had the head off and for "occasional" use, pulling a garden cart, expect to outlast me. The pressurized lube system is preferable for heavy or continuous use, however, most of us have gensets for the occasional outage. If you live in a "tornado alley" or on the coast where hurricanes visit frequently, the "occaional" might take on a whole different meaning. Agree that Propane is a good way to go, I have a 500 gallon tank which provides heating and cooking fuel and wanted to go with a propane unit. However, when you start looking for a 6-7KW propane unit, it gets tricky. e.g. Generac has a nice smaller propane genset, has a rack for a 20 lb. bottle, but I wanted to provide a "quick disconnect" and only bring out the genset when needed. Talking to Generac, fueling from other than a 20 lb. bottle would void the warranty?? In the Generac world, you can't provide a quick disconnect to a bulk propane tank, either permanently install it in an enclosure, with transfer switch, etc. or use 20lb. bottles. I didn't explore beyond Generac, there may be other alternatives out there. To make a comparison, I have a quick disonnect on my deck tied to the propane tank for my gas grill, has a regulator, shutoff valve, in a weather proof enclosure. Wheel out the grill, connect, done. All legal and works well. I guess genset manufacturers don't see enough of a market in this area.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-02-2017, 11:08 AM
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Exmar, glad you and the family didn't suffer any major damages from the storm. Having that genny - that is priceless...how neighbors wished they had a generator.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-02-2017, 09:59 PM
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Exmar, you are correct. Splash type motors do last a long time but I was referring to more of a continued use in that statement. As for the two cylinder type, I agree that they can be expensive but I did mention getting a good used one if you can. I got mine for a steal at $ 250 and it's 6600 watts. And because it's not under warranty I did not have to worry about Generac's policies.

It really depends on what you use it for and what you can afford. I like getting the best I can get for as cheap as I can get it and this just landed in my lap. Old motor home gen sets are great sets if you don't mind doing a bit of work to set them up. But for most, this is too much and I understand.

I live in Arizona and it gets smokin hot in the summer and where I live the power can be down for several days after a major storm. We have central air and I did not want to haul out a gen set every time the power goes out anymore.

So my list is actually kinda a wish list of sorts if you know what I mean.

Is your 7500 a two or single cylinder? It seems to me that most gen sets this size usually are two cylinder.

Your search for a good 6-7kw LP gen set is a tough one. I searched for a good long time before
just looking for a used one and just so happened to find a guy in Phoenix who had replaced his for an Onan.

His problem with the Generac was the gaseous fuel regulator. He had purchased a new one and was still having
problems with it. So he yanked the Generac out and put in a Onan but hated it.
Said it got to hot all the time and was always having warranty issues. So when I got the Generac home I found that the new regulator had never been tightened up and was leaking from the whole unit. I pulled it apart and checked for breakage and put it back together and it fired right up the first time.
So I got an electric start, two cylinder, oil filter pressure system generator for pennies.

Chilling in the desert Sun
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