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  1. #31

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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    trashmanssd- Hey, I`m impressed that you`re gonna do that! Does your AC go out frequently or what? Gee, with no Natural Gas on your street you`re pretty dependent on elect. huh?

    We thought about a pair of portables, but getting them into the obvious hook-up spots wouldn`t have been practical unless the weather were cooperation, and even then it`d be one *BIG* undertaking. Wacky property...just figures we`d have issues with the power, but hey it really *IS* a whole lot more reliable than it used to be so I`m Mr. Brightside.

  2. #32
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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Quote Originally Posted by Accumulator View Post
    trashmanssd- Hey, I`m impressed that you`re gonna do that! Does your AC go out frequently or what? Gee, with no Natural Gas on your street you`re pretty dependent on elect. huh?

    We thought about a pair of portables, but getting them into the obvious hook-up spots wouldn`t have been practical unless the weather were cooperation, and even then it`d be one *BIG* undertaking. Wacky property...just figures we`d have issues with the power, but hey it really *IS* a whole lot more reliable than it used to be so I`m Mr. Brightside.

    be VERY careful about running 2 gensets in parallel
    ////AMG

  3. #33

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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Quote Originally Posted by artm3 View Post
    be VERY careful about running 2 gensets in parallel
    No worries, I`ll never do anything electrical that hasn`t been all squared away by professionals. And I really do doubt I`ll bother with generators...easier to just revert to 19th living for a little while. Eh, we`ll see if I still feel that way when I`m elderly..

  4. #34
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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Quote Originally Posted by Accumulator View Post
    No worries, I`ll never do anything electrical that hasn`t been all squared away by professionals. And I really do doubt I`ll bother with generators...easier to just revert to 19th living for a little while. Eh, we`ll see if I still feel that way when I`m elderly..
    smart man
    electricity is unforgiving
    you know how you tap something to see if it is hot (temperature wise)?
    there`s people that think you can do that with electricity lol
    you can`t
    ////AMG
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  5. #35
    Dan's Avatar
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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    I think a generator backfeeding or a broken transformer could have caused the glowing bulb, but electricity does weird stuff. I once had a gutter that was 110v with a multimeter thanks to a bad light fixture on the other side of the garage. I kept getting zapped everytime I went on the roof, finally took a multimeter to the gutter.

    On the generator topic, take this for what its worth, but I`ve been through a lot of storm in the south where we didn`t have reliable electric service even on a good day. A tiny generator is better than no generator. Part of what I think is going wrong with this world is the idea that something has to be perfect to fix a problem, otherwise they want no part of it.

    With this wind storm we were out of power for 42 hours. I have two generators, one Champion 3500 and a Honda Eu2000i. Both were mothballed 6 years ago. Just ran the gas dry, drained the carb bowls and changed the oil. The Honda fired up on the 5th pull, the Champion on the first! I was able to run two side by side fridges (one was a neighbors) and a medium sized chest freezer plus a light and some chargers on the Eu2000i. I had to stagger the motor startups but its a small price to pay. I let one of my neighbors borrow the Champ. He ran his fridge and some chargers, his water heater and a few things.

    I offered to run a cord to a few other neighbors houses. The conversation went like this:

    Me: Hey, want to use my generator? We can run a cord down to you if you`d like.
    Neighbors: Oh, cool, will that power the whole house, how does that work?
    Me: No, its an extension cord to your fridge, you can keep your food from spoiling and charge your phones.
    Neighbors: Gee thanks, we`re good.

    Later spotted running their cars to charge their phones and one was complaining about the pool of water under his fridge. Both neighbors that took me up on the offer are now shopping for generators..lol.

    Moral of the story, you don`t need a huge $10k generator to save your ass. You can run cords and plug things as needed. You can even add a plug to your furnace and run a cord to it.
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  6. #36

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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan View Post
    ..Moral of the story, you don`t need a huge $10k generator to save your ass. You can run cords and plug things as needed. You can even add a plug to your furnace and run a cord to it.
    The seemingly simple "just run a cord from the (outside) generator.." would be *FAR from simple with the layout of this house, but having *something* would indeed be handy. Though our friendly/helpful) neighbor`s power never goes out and well, we *have* gotten by for nearly 20 years without it (famous last words ).

    Eh, when I do get one this thread will undoubtedly come to mind
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  7. #37
    Dan's Avatar
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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Quote Originally Posted by Accumulator View Post
    The seemingly simple "just run a cord from the (outside) generator.." would be *FAR from simple with the layout of this house, but having *something* would indeed be handy. Though our friendly/helpful) neighbor`s power never goes out and well, we *have* gotten by for nearly 20 years without it (famous last words ).

    Eh, when I do get one this thread will undoubtedly come to mind
    Oh, it is never really simple, but you gotta do what you gotta do. We had a freezer full of stuff, literally packed to the top. It took 3 cords to get to it, but I saved at least $500 worth of food in that freezer alone. Getting down to the gas water heater took 4! Made me miss the old school water heaters that didn`t require power. Thankfully this one seems very light on the amp draw.
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  8. #38
    dansautodetailing.com Stokdgs's Avatar
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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Dan,
    Enjoyed reading your experiences with generators during your last storm..

    I have never heard of an electrified gutter before !!! Amazing story.. Glad you know how to use a multimeter..
    I have a nice Fluke meter and use it all the time..

    I only have one Generator but its 66.6 amps and that can run a whole lot in one house alone..

    Only got to help 1 neighbor who was too lazy to think about doing this..

    The rest of them would just go to the nearest Hotel and rode it out there..
    Amazing what you do when your "rico"...

    Someday, look at your panel and perhaps think about changing it over to Square-D Breakers; they have the ones that allow you to cut off the Utility and run your generator directly to your panel via 1 big NEMA Outlet that your plug your generator into...
    No more extension cords, everything in the house is on, and depending on the size of the generator, you can do about everything through any storm as long as you have gasoline,etc..

    I had an Electrician come over and change the entire panel to a 200amp panel and install all Square-D Breakers in it at the same time.. The panel was really old and I hated thinking about old Breakers in there.. Can`t remember exactly how much this cost, but it was worth it to me to have it done..

    They just unplug the electricity by removing the electrical meter, remove all old breakers and install new ones.. I have in the past changed out/added single breakers that were failing in their panels for neighbors..

    When I painted houses for a side job, I would just bring the right breaker over, and install it in the house panel and wired a long, big extension to
    a NEMA Outlet directly to the that breaker, and plug my DeVilbiss Airless into it.. No disruption to the people in the house, no having to look for an outlet, I`m making my own outlet right out of their panel...

    I would go get 11 gallons of gas every year in the fall in anticipation of the almost yearly outages, and what was left over was stabilized and used for all my lawn equipment during the year, or if it got older, I would just throw it into the truck.. (89-Octane gasoline)..

    Thank you for being such a great neighbor to all those around you !
    Dan F

  9. #39
    Dan's Avatar
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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Quote Originally Posted by Stokdgs View Post
    Dan,
    Enjoyed reading your experiences with generators during your last storm..

    I have never heard of an electrified gutter before !!! Amazing story.. Glad you know how to use a multimeter..
    I have a nice Fluke meter and use it all the time..

    I only have one Generator but its 66.6 amps and that can run a whole lot in one house alone..

    Only got to help 1 neighbor who was too lazy to think about doing this..

    The rest of them would just go to the nearest Hotel and rode it out there..
    Amazing what you do when your "rico"...

    Someday, look at your panel and perhaps think about changing it over to Square-D Breakers; they have the ones that allow you to cut off the Utility and run your generator directly to your panel via 1 big NEMA Outlet that your plug your generator into...
    No more extension cords, everything in the house is on, and depending on the size of the generator, you can do about everything through any storm as long as you have gasoline,etc..

    I had an Electrician come over and change the entire panel to a 200amp panel and install all Square-D Breakers in it at the same time.. The panel was really old and I hated thinking about old Breakers in there.. Can`t remember exactly how much this cost, but it was worth it to me to have it done..

    They just unplug the electricity by removing the electrical meter, remove all old breakers and install new ones.. I have in the past changed out/added single breakers that were failing in their panels for neighbors..

    When I painted houses for a side job, I would just bring the right breaker over, and install it in the house panel and wired a long, big extension to
    a NEMA Outlet directly to the that breaker, and plug my DeVilbiss Airless into it.. No disruption to the people in the house, no having to look for an outlet, I`m making my own outlet right out of their panel...

    I would go get 11 gallons of gas every year in the fall in anticipation of the almost yearly outages, and what was left over was stabilized and used for all my lawn equipment during the year, or if it got older, I would just throw it into the truck.. (89-Octane gasoline)..

    Thank you for being such a great neighbor to all those around you !
    Dan F
    Yep, its all about making due with what you got! Quite a few did go to hotels... I can`t imagine a big hotel bill on top of spoiled food sitting at home and worrying about frozen pipes too.

    I added a transfer switch to my old house (the kind that takes individual circuits vs the whole panel), and it was great. My (first world) problem with the new house is a couple of issues:

    1. My electrician entertains my ideas and then is busy when I decide to move forward, and in reality he`s helped me by doing so because I`ve re-thought my configuration a few times.
    2. I have two 200 amp panels, massive overkill for my house, one panel is half full, the other less than that. Neither panel is perfect for the job. So I`d need to move circuits around. The good news is both are Siemens panels that support the backfeeding interlocks that are fairly cheap.
    3. Now that both DD`s are electric, I need to get some 220v outlets added too.

    2&3 are going to cost me some serious bucks. We`re not 100% sure how much longer we`re going to stay in the house too, so, that` leaves me right were I am, with no transfer panel. I`d be game if it added resale value, but the reality is most people don`t even want that stuff, I got nothing but dumb questions about it on the last house when I sold it. And the cherry on top is we`ve had super reliable service, those generators have stood idle for 6 years. Hard to get excited about dropping $1-2k for that stuff even though my inner geek really craves it!
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  10. #40
    dansautodetailing.com Stokdgs's Avatar
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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan View Post
    Yep, its all about making due with what you got! Quite a few did go to hotels... I can`t imagine a big hotel bill on top of spoiled food sitting at home and worrying about frozen pipes too.

    I added a transfer switch to my old house (the kind that takes individual circuits vs the whole panel), and it was great. My (first world) problem with the new house is a couple of issues:

    1. My electrician entertains my ideas and then is busy when I decide to move forward, and in reality he`s helped me by doing so because I`ve re-thought my configuration a few times.
    2. I have two 200 amp panels, massive overkill for my house, one panel is half full, the other less than that. Neither panel is perfect for the job. So I`d need to move circuits around. The good news is both are Siemens panels that support the backfeeding interlocks that are fairly cheap.
    3. Now that both DD`s are electric, I need to get some 220v outlets added too.

    2&3 are going to cost me some serious bucks. We`re not 100% sure how much longer we`re going to stay in the house too, so, that` leaves me right were I am, with no transfer panel. I`d be game if it added resale value, but the reality is most people don`t even want that stuff, I got nothing but dumb questions about it on the last house when I sold it. And the cherry on top is we`ve had super reliable service, those generators have stood idle for 6 years. Hard to get excited about dropping $1-2k for that stuff even though my inner geek really craves it!
    Dan,

    Wow ! 2 - 200amp panels !!!
    But makes sense with 2 Electric Daily Drivers...
    I`m not familiar with Siemens Breaker Panels but will do some research..
    So there are 2 Meters outside there ? Impressive..

    I know, it`s always hard to know what to do, but the only sure thing I can see is that the weather has been more unpredictable and harder than I can ever remember..
    We just have to decide the best way to take care of our family first and then see if we can help out neighbors..

    Yeah, I know, if I was considering moving later, perhaps better to not keep investing into that house unless it becomes a "premium extra charge" to have it, when it goes up for sale..

    I remember 1 year, one of my neighbors and I bought some generators, (Honda`s are quiet) and took them to people we knew who were freezing with no power, some with little kids, and connected them up to their furnaces, and refrigerators, and a couple extra extensions for lights, etc., and left them with gas and strict instructions on how to use them..

    Good luck with that project..

    Dan F
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  11. #41
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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Quote Originally Posted by Stokdgs View Post
    Dan,

    Wow ! 2 - 200amp panels !!!
    But makes sense with 2 Electric Daily Drivers...
    I`m not familiar with Siemens Breaker Panels but will do some research..
    So there are 2 Meters outside there ? Impressive..

    I know, it`s always hard to know what to do, but the only sure thing I can see is that the weather has been more unpredictable and harder than I can ever remember..
    We just have to decide the best way to take care of our family first and then see if we can help out neighbors..

    Yeah, I know, if I was considering moving later, perhaps better to not keep investing into that house unless it becomes a "premium extra charge" to have it, when it goes up for sale..

    I remember 1 year, one of my neighbors and I bought some generators, (Honda`s are quiet) and took them to people we knew who were freezing with no power, some with little kids, and connected them up to their furnaces, and refrigerators, and a couple extra extensions for lights, etc., and left them with gas and strict instructions on how to use them..

    Good luck with that project..

    Dan F
    2-200amp panels, one meter! Our electric company used to offer a meter that had a generator interlock...but they quit doing that.

    So nice of you to set people up with generators, you probably saved them a ton of hassle and maybe their lives!
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  12. #42

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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Gee, I`m so ignorant about our electrical service compared to you guys! All I really know is that we have one meter and a total of four breaker boxes.

    And yeah, elect vehicles add a whole new dimension to this, hadn`t considered that.

    Stokdgs- Somehow I`m not at all surprised that you were so helpful to those in need.
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  13. #43
    dansautodetailing.com Stokdgs's Avatar
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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Quote Originally Posted by Accumulator View Post
    Gee, I`m so ignorant about our electrical service compared to you guys! All I really know is that we have one meter and a total of four breaker boxes.

    And yeah, elect vehicles add a whole new dimension to this, hadn`t considered that.

    Stokdgs- Somehow I`m not at all surprised that you were so helpful to those in need.

    Mi Hermano Accumulator,

    You will never be ignorant that is a well known fact !

    All of us here have been blessed to bring what we have learned to the table so others can hear about it..

    We are all glad to share what we know works; and of course none of us could ever be the Master of Finish Kare, and so many other things as you !

    Wow - 4 Breaker Boxes ! You must live in a Chateau or Hotel sized place ! How nice !

    Thank you for the kindness ! That really means a lot to me..
    Dan F

  14. #44

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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Quote Originally Posted by Stokdgs
    ...[effusive praise of Accumulator]...
    "Gee, thanks!" vies with "oh, man... spare me" when I ponder a response Eh, guess we all have our areas of relative expertise/ignorance. Make enough mistakes and you can learn a bit... if paying attention!

    BUT...I oughta know more about my household`s electrical system than I do. I probably did know a little more when we did this place but if so I`ve forgotten it I do know which breakers I reset now and then. [INSERT rant about the first electrical contractor, whom I threw off the property after, uhm...disagreement about who`s the boss.]

    And yeah..we built the "Big House with Nice Garage", but uhm, heh heh..."gotta watch what you wish for" comes to mind now and then.
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  15. #45
    dansautodetailing.com Stokdgs's Avatar
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    Re: No power but light bulbs faint glow?

    Quote Originally Posted by Accumulator View Post
    "Gee, thanks!" vies with "oh, man... spare me" when I ponder a response Eh, guess we all have our areas of relative expertise/ignorance. Make enough mistakes and you can learn a bit... if paying attention!

    BUT...I oughta know more about my household`s electrical system than I do. I probably did know a little more when we did this place but if so I`ve forgotten it I do know which breakers I reset now and then. [INSERT rant about the first electrical contractor, whom I threw off the property after, uhm...disagreement about who`s the boss.]

    And yeah..we built the "Big House with Nice Garage", but uhm, heh heh..."gotta watch what you wish for" comes to mind now and then.
    Accumulator -

    Yes, we all do learn, and learn from mistakes..

    It is always good to label the breakers whenever you are in a panel (if they are not already labeled) so it`s much easier to know what each controls, when things might be in a crisis mode, etc..

    We are all happy to help and I believe at one time, there were at least 1-2 Electricians on here... Not sure of their names anymore, but they may see this thread and pop in..

    I was blessed to help build giant multi-story buildings from bare ground, and since my expertise was all Telecom, I had to work with all the Electrical, Cable, Fiber, etc., Contractors that put in all wiring including electrical, which was all huge 3-Phase boxes, etc..

    But I was as a much braver, sillier, youth, plugging breakers into Hot, house panels, so as to not inconvenience the people inside.. (the house painting gig)
    The secret there is to NOT EVER touch the Buss Bar that the breakers plug into, or you will die... Secret -2 - Never stand in water while servicing Electrical anything.. Water is an excellent conductor of electricity.....
    Dan F

 

 
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