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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

I've only recently wanted to have a generator for power outage situations. My home is setup with a 30A breaker to receive power from a generator with an L14-30 male plug outside mounted to the dwelling to receive power from the cord from the generator. The generator is a Dyna 9000. In my ignorance I thought 9000 watts should allow 75A so I could beef up the inside breaker to at least 50A and change the plug on the generator from a 30A to some 50A type since the generator should be able to output 9000 watts or 75A and would still be safe enough to that extent. Not trying to push it just trying to have a bit more head room.

Talking to a friend that has a 22000 watt (or something) generator but still only a 30A 220V outlet on the gen I decided it's maybe better somehow to just stay with the 30A idea? Okay I guess but it leads to more questions. Is there any value in having a 9000W gen over a 7000W gen or even a 3600W gen when none of them offer the option of more than 30A?

Thank you for any help understanding this!

David
Maine, USA
 

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9000W is the surge rating for the generator. The generator puts out about 30 amps per leg continuously, so only a 30 amp receptacle is needed. Larger generators would have a 50 amp receptacle.
 

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This generator is wired for split-phase 120/240V. It means that the total capcity is split along the two (2) 120V legs (Hot-to-Neutral) OR the 240V (Hot-to-Hot).

In other words, each 120V leg is only capable of 4.5kW. For you to get the full 9kW, you need to balance your 120V loads across the two legs, each at 37.5A max.

If you use 240V, you can use the full 9kW.... still 37.5A max.

But if you use both 120V and 240V outputs, you'll need to make sure you don't exceed the generators total capacity... 9kW in this case.

I used 9kW for simplicity in explaining the concept but the RATED Watts will be slightly lower. So yes, a 30A hookup is likely all you need.

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Welcome to forum nopeda!
to just stay with the 30A idea?
I think many of the members here (myself included) run with the L14-30 receptacle.
Is there any value in having a 9000W gen over a 7000W gen or even a 3600W gen when none of them offer the option of more than 30A?
All depends on how much juice you want/need/require in the house for an outage. Is your L14-30 receptacle wired to the main panel with an interlock or a transfer switch panel? It doesnt sound like you have a Generlink by your description but I could be wrong.

I'm not sure if you already have the Dyna 9000 or not, but if you've not yet purchased the gen and are not in a huge rush, spend some time here on the site reading related posts on member setups and gens/inverter gens being used. You'll find there's a huge amount of experience on this site to go by.
 

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First, you need to determine what you want "backup power for". Is it to run your basic household needs while the power is out, or support a larger operation.
An example is could you live as if you were camping?
My personal preference is the keep my cold foods cold, water in my toilet/shower and the heat on. If I can have a radio plugged in, even better. (btw, I live in a rural area, so well water and a pump in my home for water pressure).
Step one make a list of all of the "essentials" you would like to operate during an outage, then list their "peak/startup" demand.
Next, go through this list with other family/household members, and refine it. One example might be a/c..can you survive without it?
If you need help, there are numberous "home backup power generator calculaters" out there.
Next, while determining your needs, take into account the situation of fuel storage. Most utilities now say we should prepare for a minimum 72 hour interuption in power. Reality is most generators "sip" a tank of fuel in 8 hours, so 2-3 fill ups (5 gallons or so usually for larger units) would indicate a need for 6x5 or 30 gallons of "fresh" fuel on stored.
Many may say you don't need this much fuel, BUT do you know your local fuel suppliers will have power?
Next, is natural gas an option? Propane? Will that supply chain be interurpted?
Lots of questions, lots of planning, lots of involvement, but to be honest, I see many running their 3,000 W generators as back up power.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I did a test run with it last night and it seems 30A is enough to run my furnace system (oil and forced air), refrigerator, computer, TV and all the lights I care to use. So 30A is probably enough though only ran the test about 40 minutes. None of the breakers got at all warm though. The LED lights were constantly flickering a bit and I worried about possible dirty(?) power harming the computer. Might it be better to go with something like a lower wattage inverter generator? I don't know what that means. Something newer but less wattage? 30A would only require 3600 watts right? So a 5000 or 6000 watt should be plenty is that correct? If so that would open up a lot more options.
 

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The LED lights were constantly flickering a bit and I worried about possible dirty(?) power harming the computer.
Typical with a "dirty" high THD generator.

30A would only require 3600 watts right?
Depends on what you mean by 30A. Is this at 120V only or split phase 240V? Watts = Volts X Amps

If you are looking at a split phase 240V system, take a look at a WEN GN625i as they are not too expensive for an inverter pure sinewave generator. This gen will provide 20.8A per leg when in 120/240V mode. Or, if you are using 120V only, then it will provide 41A.

I have one of these converted to use tri-fuel.
 

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I did a test run with it last night and it seems 30A is enough to run my furnace system (oil and forced air), refrigerator, computer, TV and all the lights I care to use. So 30A is probably enough though only ran the test about 40 minutes. None of the breakers got at all warm though. The LED lights were constantly flickering a bit and I worried about possible dirty(?) power harming the computer. Might it be better to go with something like a lower wattage inverter generator? I don't know what that means. Something newer but less wattage? 30A would only require 3600 watts right? So a 5000 or 6000 watt should be plenty is that correct? If so that would open up a lot more options.
With careful planning, you'd be surprised what you can run on generator power, especially if you're not rocking a massive generator.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Typical with a "dirty" high THD generator.


Depends on what you mean by 30A. Is this at 120V only or split phase 240V? Watts = Volts X Amps

If you are looking at a split phase 240V system, take a look at a WEN GN625i as they are not too expensive for an inverter pure sinewave generator. This gen will provide 20.8A per leg when in 120/240V mode. Or, if you are using 120V only, then it will provide 41A.
What does THD mean? The power enters the home breaker box through a 240V 30A circuit breaker but nothing I use is actually 240V all just 120V. The only 240V item I would probably use would be the hot water heater which I would leave off the majority of the time, but might turn it on now and then for about 45 minutes or so and make sure the furnace and refrigerator won't come on during that time. The water heater is 3800W 240V so by my figuring it's 15.83A

What do you think about this one since there's a Harbor Freight close by:
 

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What does THD mean?
Total Harmonic Distortion. Lots of discussions about that. A recent one is here: THD meter?

nothing I use is actually 240V all just 120V
Then I would highly recommend the GN625i for that. I only use 120V.

The only 240V item I would probably use would be the hot water heater
The water heater can be easily switched to use 120V and 1/4 the power (so 950W, 8A) with just a simple 3-way switch. It takes longer for the water heater to recover from using hot water, but it works!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Total Harmonic Distortion. Lots of discussions about that. A recent one is here: THD meter?

Then I would highly recommend the GN625i for that. I only use 120V.
What about this one:
which would save a couple hundred bucks? I'm not trying to oppose your suggestion and probably will take it...just trying to save money if I can. But neither option I asked about says it's an inverter generator and haven't found anything about THD rating for the Westinghouse and your suggestion is the best price on an inverter gen I've been able to find. Sorry, it takes me a while to give in to spending extra money, but it seems at this point your suggestion is the best value on an electronics safe gen hopefully to last the rest of my life, so I should probably shut up, suck it up, and spend the money to get the thing...and free shipping from Amazon :)
 

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Compare the checkout price on Amazon vs the WEN site. I paid no shipping & no tax when I ordered from WEN.

Also, I recommend getting the magnetic dipstick that WEN has on their site at the bottom of the page...
View attachment 13598
I'd like to get one, but I've heard stories of the magnet falling out and into the crankcase. Is there anything holding the magnet in place other than friction?
 

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I'd like to get one, but I've heard stories of the magnet falling out and into the crankcase. Is there anything holding the magnet in place other than friction?
I don't know what WEN is using to hold the magnets, but I know that is an issue that has cropped up occasionally with gens in general.
 

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My solution has been to place a rare earth magnet under the crankcase, but not all of the crankcases use steel, unfortunately.
I have used the round rare earth magnets epoxied into holes drilled into drain plugs. I have made magnetic drain plugs for my other yard equipment and even my car engine and transmissions. Unfortunately, the GN625i does not have a drain plug. Instead it has a drain hose.
 

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I don't know what WEN is using to hold the magnets, but I know that is an issue that has cropped up occasionally with gens in general.
I'm using a few of the Wen's as I 'think' their quality control is better than the others offered on the market. I check what I can on the magnets staying power each time I screw it out, but it's become kind of a 'hope and pray the magnet's still in place' item for me...So far so good!
 

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I'm using a few of the Wen's as I 'think' their quality control is better than the others offered on the market
Hopefully the manufacturer would use higher quality control than some of the stuff that you can buy off of eBay. They do have to provide a warranty on their gens, so one would hope that they would recognize that and take appropriate precautions.

I make my own magnetic drain plugs (again, this WEN does not have a drain plug, so N/A) using cylindrical magnets and JB Weld. I scuff up the sides of the magnet a little bit, and also make one side have a flat that is as deep as the hole it goes into so that excess epoxy can come out. I force the magnet into the hole by putting the assembly into my vise between two boards. The magnets almost hold themselves in the hole because of the plug being ferrous. The magnets can also be broken to a shorter length if desired.
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