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Discussion Starter #1
I recently got out my old 5000 watt propane generator that I had in Florida. (See pics) It helped me many times through a few hurricanes.
I’m now a Tennessean and would like to install a 30 Amp inlet box on the exterior of my house and a 30 Amp 6 circuit manual transfer switch along side my main panel in the basement. Installing the inlet box and transfer switch seems pretty simple. I’m just unsure as to the size and type of Romex that goes between the inlet box and the transfer switch... I see on the web that this run of romex is orange. Not sure what to get....Thanks!





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You run the same size wire that is connected to the breaker that you want to supply with the generator feed.
Most 30 amp eight pole Transfer Switches have six breakers that are either 15 amps (14 gauge wire)or 20 amps (12 gauge wire) and two that are 30 amp breakers (#10 wire). From my experience the 30 amp TS comes with a bundle of marked wires that are sized for the breakers supplied with the TS and are color coded.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the info. I’m not real experienced with this stuff. Yes, my 6 circuit transfer switch is exactly what you described. Will this wire work then? see pic....



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The roll of wire you pictured is 10/3 Romex and is good for up to 30 amps.
What you will need for this 6 circuit switch are single wires to connect the sub panel.
Two #10 wires will be needed from the male mounted plug to the side of the TS that is marked for the generator input. They should be already installed in the TS. But to keep things in order, you will need 12 color coded wires to enable the correct installation. Don't screw up!
7989

The wires that return to the selected circuits need to be marked for identification, otherwise you will get lost on install. Even an experienced electrician can get lost doing this.
Sorry for the haphazard drawing. but is it early in the morning.
I failed to mark the center conductors, but they go to the circuits you wish to feed.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for this but man I’m lost! I found this
video “This Old House” This is exactly what I want to do.


I will install the 6 circuit 30 Amp transfer switch pre-wired design next to the electrical panel in my basement

I will also install the 30 Amp inlet box on the outside of the house. I will drill a hole through the concrete block to run a line to the transfer switch.

I will have an electrician do the final wiring but I want it all ready for the final wiring.

So my question is, at 6:18 of this video the electrician runs an orange 10/3 non metallic wire to the transfer switch from the inlet box. Is this the proper wire for me to run so all the electrician has to do is the final wiring? I hope the answers is yes....lol Thanks again for your patience!



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how long is the romex run to be in feet?
i like at least 8/3 with ground for med gens.
and always run 6/3 with ground on my systems to leave room for larger generator expansion later. (that buy the wire once thing)
most of the time it is a pain to run the wire... and so i like to run the good stuff once.
and never have to look back!
lol!
in this case bigger is better!
 

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@ 618 you say nonmetallic wire. Explain that please.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
At 6:18 of the video that I linked the electrician stated he used 10/3 non metallic wire/cable


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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Ok thanks. I have a 25 ft. run from the outside
Inlet box to the transfer switch. Still use 8/3?



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Discussion Starter #12
Another question thanks...when I run the Romex to the transfer switch from my inlet box, can I staple the romex to the floor joists? Or does it need to be in a conduit? And when it reaches the concrete block wall coming down to the transfer switch, does that need a conduit for the short 4ft span?


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If the Romex is up inside the floor joists you can staple it.
If the Romex is under the floor joist (Bottom) and exposed to possible damage it has to be in conduit.
As for the exposed run down the wall, it has to terminate at a Junction box then it definitely has to be in conduit and properly strapped no more that 12" from the boxes.
As to size, the Romex will require 1 inch pipe unless it is the flat type Romex. That will require a larger pipe, but if I were going to install this project I would go another way.
Drop the Romex idea and buy enough stranded number 6 for future upgrades for a larger generator.
I would connect a 1 1/2" pipe to the inlet box and continue with conduit to the TS.
I would use the above mentioned #6 stranded THWN rated at 65 amps.
Two 6 gauge black wires, another 6 gauge black wire marked with white tape for a neutral and a #10 ground.
There are numerous types of #6 gauge wire and you should use the type that has the best coating and is stranded,
You can google that and find which THHN is best. https://cityelectricsupply.com/downloads/Ampacity Chart.pdf
The best grade #6 stranded is capable of carrying 75 amps. look at the chart.
Then there are other issues: There may be control wires that need to be run from the generator to the transfer Switch.
Those wires cannot be run in the same conduit as the #6 wire.
Properly done, I assure you that if a fire occurs your insurance company will not balk at paying a claim.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Wow! Thank you for that great information. Is location of the transfer switch box critical?
See pic....



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My TS is next to the breaker box.
Here is my set up.....
200 amp Main breaker panel. 100 amps feeds to the TS
To the right is the TS. The TS has 16 breakers in it and I feed 50 amps to a sub panel from the TS.
To the left of my main is my sub panel. I chose to breaker it at 50 amps and breakered that to feed the necessary circuits I wanted the generator to run.
My TS is rated at 100 amps so I installed a 100 amp breaker and fed the TS with 100 amps.
However the generator can only feed 65 amps but that was my choice.
The generator amperage has no bearing on the feed from the breaker box. It only allows you to feed so much amperage to the circuits and is limited to the breakers in a sub panel that you install.
You can then run the power feeds and the control wires to the generator connection from the TS.
I made the mistake that you are about to make.
I bought a 14 KW Generac and wired it with #8.
The when the generator died I was stuck with a limit of 65 amps so as to not over load the wiring. I had to go with no more that 16 KW as a replacement or rewire the entire system.
Plan ahead or pay for it later.
I did put the hot water heater on the 16 circuit panel, but I have to be careful to turn it off and use it sparingly when the generator is running as it is 2200 watts. I will replace the HW heater with an instant on gas unit in the future.
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I wanted to add a further comment.
When I bought this house I had a Harbor Freight generator and it sat in the garage.
When I wired the garage I made arrangements to use the Harbor Freight generator as a back fed system.
So I installed a sub panel to enable the back feed.
Later I decided to install the 14 KW Generac as if the need arises my wife could not manage the back fed system.

Now as to your picture: It appears that the right panel is the main and the left panel is a sub panel that allows additional breakers for the necessary circuits you chose to breaker.
You have a good set up and it can be easily adapted to a generator. Just do not make the mistake most make.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Ok thanks. I’m going with a 30 Amp 6 circuit TS. All I want are a few lights, a PTAC wall air conditioner and a TV. I think my 5000W generator can handle that....


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Ok thanks. I’m going with a 30 Amp 6 circuit TS. All I want are a few lights, a PTAC wall air conditioner and a TV. I think my 5000W generator can handle that....


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Probably not when the AC attempts to start the compressor, but it will let you know right away if it can or not thats for sure, just be there to shut the AC off
 

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link for the page with the soft start unit below
Micro Air soft start link is on this page
yea after using them for the last couple of years.
they are the trick setup for sure.

the state fair folks swear by them.
they can run one eu2200i on a camper and fire one ac unit!

they help on the home stuff to stop the light dimming when the big units kick in as well.
i had the window ac units that had a bit over 100 amps in rush..
now they are below 18 amps. and that is a split second in rush.

120 vac as well as 240 vac they are the trick setup!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Ok, will only running my wall ac unit with my 5000 watt gen work? - nothing else. Here’s the specs...



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