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Author Topic: Hurricane Florence generator victim  (Read 1196 times)

Mike Sokol

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Re: Hurricane Florence generator victim
« Reply #20 on: September 20, 2018, 10:38:19 am »

A couple of quandries I see with this device:

1.  It uses a 4 wire cord and my understanding requires an unbonded generator.  I have never seen a 4 wire meter base-3 wires in, 3 wires out-neutral and ground bond at the panel.  If there were a fault in the neutral from the meter to the panel the potential exists for the frame of the genny to have a potential higher than ground.  A rather undesireable situation.  Not even sure how to address this issue.

The vast majority of portable generators in the 5kw to 7kw range (and ALL inverter generators I'm familiar with) have a floating/unbonded neutral, so I think that's a non-issue for most of these small genny installations. Of course, your mileage may vary...
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Stephen Swaffer

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Re: Hurricane Florence generator victim
« Reply #21 on: September 20, 2018, 12:21:09 pm »

Right-except that by code the frame of that genny needs to be bonded to the grounding electrode system of the building being supplied.  Most of us could do this easily with a piece of the correct size wire run though a window or door frame and a ground clamp-but the Generlink itself provides no way to do this-even though it uses a 4 wire cord-there simply are not enough wires from the meter to the panel to do this correctly.

Most inlets used in conjunction with a interlock or transfer switch will have four wires all the way to the panel (IF done correctly!)

I'm not attacking the product-it seems like an interesting solution-but unless we are OK with an exception to the bonding rules for services, it requires a little more than meets the eye.
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Steve Swaffer

Jonathan Johnson

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Re: Hurricane Florence generator victim
« Reply #22 on: September 20, 2018, 11:08:04 pm »

The problem I see with breaker interlocks is that if the panel cover is removed, there is no interlock so backfeeding is a distinct possibility.

I wouldn't be surprised to find out that many homeowners remove the cover for some reason and never bother to reinstall it.

A proper break-before-make, double-throw transfer switch is still going to provide isolation even with the cover off or open. It's much more difficult to defeat isolation.
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: Hurricane Florence generator victim
« Reply #23 on: September 21, 2018, 11:12:35 am »

The problem I see with breaker interlocks is that if the panel cover is removed, there is no interlock so backfeeding is a distinct possibility.

I wouldn't be surprised to find out that many homeowners remove the cover for some reason and never bother to reinstall it.

A proper break-before-make, double-throw transfer switch is still going to provide isolation even with the cover off or open. It's much more difficult to defeat isolation.

We've made electricity too safe.  More people need to die and more homes, businesses and other buildings need to burn to the ground before complacent persons will get the message that most of them have zero business opening breaker boxes or otherwise fooling with mains AC.

No, I'm not joking.
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John Roberts {JR}

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Re: Hurricane Florence generator victim
« Reply #24 on: September 21, 2018, 11:26:18 am »

We've made electricity too safe.  More people need to die and more homes, businesses and other buildings need to burn to the ground before complacent persons will get the message that most of them have zero business opening breaker boxes or otherwise fooling with mains AC.

No, I'm not joking.
The same thing is true about gasoline used to power cars. Incredibly dangerous if mishandled.

The last time I checked electrocution deaths, many were engineers and technicians who should know better but became too comfortable around electricity.

Just like airline pilots who can't land planes without the computers this is the double edged sword of technology. 

Self driving cars will mean less competent drivers, but fewer accidental deaths. It's just the unintended side effects of progress.

JR
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Stephen Swaffer

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Re: Hurricane Florence generator victim
« Reply #25 on: September 21, 2018, 12:22:13 pm »

The problem I see with breaker interlocks is that if the panel cover is removed, there is no interlock so backfeeding is a distinct possibility.


That is why I really prefer the Milbank one that works with their meter/disconnects-it actually mounts to the main breaker so it is more in line with a true transfer switch.  I live in a rural area where a meter/main is just a better solution than a meter right to a main panel in so many situations.  On a new install, I can do a meter/main + interlock for quite a bit less than a true transfer.
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