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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have a 120V, 3000W generator which I would like to connect, through a manual transfer switch, to my house and, in doing so, supply 120V to both "sides" of the circuit breaker panel. In doing that it would supply 120V to the furnace, fridge, lights etc but since the same 120V polarity would be on both sides, there would be no 240V available (which is OK as I wouldn't need to power the range or clothes dryer anyhow). I know this will work electrically but my question is, would it pass code?? It's unconventional AFAIK so I'd be surprised but thought I'd ask anyhow. It seems to me all that would be required for the transfer switch would be a conventional double pole, double throw switch installed upstream of the breaker panel(?).

Thanks for any assistance in this....
 

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The easiest solution, and keeps you from making any non-code compliant changes to your electrical system is to just make a "cheater cord" for your generator.

You will need an approved interlock for your main panel or transfer switch.

Make up a cord that plugs into your generators 120 volt receptacle. At the other end wire up a plug that fits into your 4 prong (hot-hot-neutral-ground) inlet but tie the two hots together - you'll only have 3 wires in the cord.

Then, if you ever get a bigger generator you haven't modified the house.

You do need to watch out for any multi-wire branch circuits that you may have, if any. They will still work but you could overload the neutral.
 

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I think it would be tough for a 3000 watt generator to power an entire breaker panel, even if it was just the 120V circuits.

A better plan would be to use a real standby transfer switch and wire it to the "essential" circuits in your home (fridge, cable/tv, internet/phone, selected lights, fans, etc.).
 

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No, it works just fine. I have a 3000 watt generator 120/240 volt.

I can power the entire house, not just 6 or 12 circuits. You just have to know and watch what your loads are.

Interlocks are great for flexibility. Most transfer panels also defeat AFCI and GFCI breakers, not so with an interlock.
 

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The easiest solution, and keeps you from making any non-code compliant changes to your electrical system is to just make a "cheater cord" for your generator.

You will need an approved interlock for your main panel or transfer switch.

Make up a cord that plugs into your generators 120 volt receptacle. At the other end wire up a plug that fits into your 4 prong (hot-hot-neutral-ground) inlet but tie the two hots together - you'll only have 3 wires in the cord.

Then, if you ever get a bigger generator you haven't modified the house.

You do need to watch out for any multi-wire branch circuits that you may have, if any. They will still work but you could overload the neutral.
I had no idea Cutler Hammer made one for my panel. I found a Cutler HammerFactory OEM Interlock Part #CH8KFM and placed my order yesterday. I'm going to change out my interlock.com one and go with the Factory OEM one.
 
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