Generator Advice

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Fitz-

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I’ve made a number of large purchases over the past 4 years and one thing I’d strongly suggest is to get at least 2 if not three quotes on any large purchase. $16K for installation is beyond ludicrous. In June 2020 I had a 22KW Generac installed along with the 400A (utility required it) ATS. I believe out the door that cost me around $8000. Not sure if the larger portables have an oil filter but those that don’t will need the oil changed more frequently I’d suspect.
I've heard that a lot of services in anything vaguely construction have gotten banana's. But ya this seemed extreme.
 

Fitz-

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I’ve made a number of large purchases over the past 4 years and one thing I’d strongly suggest is to get at least 2 if not three quotes on any large purchase. $16K for installation is beyond ludicrous. In June 2020 I had a 22KW Generac installed along with the 400A (utility required it) ATS. I believe out the door that cost me around $8000. Not sure if the larger portables have an oil filter but those that don’t will need the oil changed more frequently I’d suspect.

You can buy a pretty capable portable generator for $2k to $3k...maybe even less depending on what you want.

You can have an outlet installed that the generator plugs into on your home. Install a lockout kit on your electrical panel that keeps you from back-powering the downed power grid and hurting someone. It's very simple and relatively inexpensive. You can add a soft start kit to an A/C to really lower the amps needed not only to start the A/C but to run it. They're relatively inexpensive, too. I'm not sure about heat.

You can hook up a small wall heater or fireplace (we went with the fireplace and use it almost exclusively in the winter) and have that and your generator, depending on what you buy, that will run off of your propane tank. I'm guessing you could easily do all of that for well under $5k.

I bought a Generac 8500w portable that powers pretty much the whole house if it's managed properly. I hooked up the lockout kit (it's very easy), trashed the electric cookstove and used that breaker spot for the generator, had a propane line run to the kitchen and living room for cooking and heat. The generator has enough juice to power everything. I haven't installed the soft-start on the A/C yet but I will. I chose my generator based on the fact it provided "clean" power that won't harm electronics that are sensitive to power fluctuations (it's called an "inverter" generator).

Now we have a source of power, heat and the ability to cook and get water (since we're on a well). I'll eventually upgrade the generator but it'll do for now. I did all that for under $5k.
Either of you in the Tulsa area ish or east of it? If so, who did you use.
 

OK Corgi Rancher

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Either of you in the Tulsa area ish or east of it? If so, who did you use.

No...not near Tulsa. I'm near Ada. I did almost everything myself but used a plumber to run the gas lines. That was the most expensive thing.

The generator was roughly $1100. Plumber was $1600. Fireplace was $900. The rest of the cost was maybe $500. So about $4100 total.
 

CHenry

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It not that hard to run your house off of portable generator. Our house is gas heat an hot water tank. So just use what you consider a necessity an you will be fine. Minimal use of electrical appliances. ALWAYS shut breaker off so your power can’t go back out on service line.
yep, I ran a portable 5500 watt Coleman and powered my entire house. Only issue was the electric stove and I couldn't run more that 1 burner at a time, nor could I use the microwave, unless I turned some other stuff off. It had a 11 gal tank and ran about 24 hours on a tank. Longest I ever ran it was 3 1/2 days.
Had an electrician wire it into the breaker box.
 

Firpo

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And I’m afraid I’m no help being down near Lawton. I’d contact Kohler and Generac directly and ask them for a couple of names for whom they suggest.

Another thing to consider is your heating system. I have three heat pumps (my one and only experience with them) and man oh man, the first year we were here We lost power and I was sitting all fat, dumb and happy when my generator kicked off on overload. What? 🥴 Come to find out those darn emergency heat strips draw about 82 amps just my themselves….and that’s just for one heat pump. Good news is once I got that all figured out and am fortunate to have two propane fueled fireplaces on opposite ends of the house that are very efficient and keep everything nice and toasty. I use the generator for everything but heating the house and have more than enough power.
 
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cowadle

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Was in a reply, but unfortunately electric furnace. Water heater I dont consider important but is gas.

250gal tank, could go to a 500. Currently only runs stove and water heater is why I figured it'd be ideal for an ample fuel supply that isn't tricky to store long term like gasoline.
electric furnace is a killer. consider installing a gas fireplace insert with forced air? and another gas heater if needed. then it sounds like you can get by pretty easy with a small 5500 or even a 10,000 watt generator. when you replace your furnace go gas. the harbor freight gens i have are not the inverter type and i have no problems with sensitive electronics. buy a kill o watt meter and plug it into some of your appliances to see what the running watts are? or just go ahead and get a good fluke meter? look for an interlock kit for the brand of your breaker box.
 

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