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Implement Alley Discussion Forum

pto generators

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Jimmy 2013

12-28-2013 07:34:35

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What size generator do I need to power a 1600 square foot home?

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12-29-2013 06:52:20

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 Re: pto generators in reply to Jimmy 2013, 12-28-2013 07:34:35  
Having just gone through 3 days of no power in temps a bit above zero, I can tell you that going a little big is way better than too small. My little 3500 watt Honda could pump water for the barn or the house, but not both. Same thing when I had a 5500 watt genny. I bought a 25Kw (I think) PTO gen at auction for $125.00. Looked like crap, but I took the chance. Took it right to my local electrical shop and they checked it out. Said it didn't have many hours on it, just looked bad from sitting outside. I hooked it up and it ran everything in house and barn- except the computers and tv, didn't want to risk that. My wife charged her laptop though so we could find out what was going on. (On a side note- we used to have local AM radio stations that you could keep up with things on. Now it's all FM that's broadcast via computer someplace- not good for local emergencies at all!)

Anyway, since PTO gens tend to all cost about the same, used, in the 25-40Kw range up here, I'd get the biggest one in the best shape I could afford. A 40 Kw unit is about the same size as a 25Kw unit and if you only use it to, say, half it's capacity then you're being that much easier on the gear box which has been the weak point in PTO gens I've seen or heard of failing. You may only actually draw 15Kws of power for instance, but that's harder on a 25 than 40 I would think.

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12-28-2013 23:25:58

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 Re: pto generators in reply to Jimmy 2013, 12-28-2013 07:34:35  
When I was facing that decision I added up the amperage I was using. 4200 square feet in the house, all electric, with a (key point) 200 amp panel which also feeds the barns. On the surface a 25 KW unit would give me power to spare based on the panel main.

Actually a 10 KW would do it as I run everything through a 100 amp safety switch. Biggest power hog I have is the heat pump, pulls 60 amps at full load. So, that means I can't run the heat pump at full capacity, the water heater, the oven, the stove, the dryer, two welders, and 2 air compressors, plus a coffee pot, TV, and clothes iron. Oh, wait, I can't run all that anyway, it would trip the mains which I have never done.

I play it smart when on gen power. When the heat pump is on I keep it to things like lights, TV, coffee pot, etc. When we take showers, run the dryer, bake, etc I switch off the heat pump for that period of time. Saves a lot of fuel as the tractor isn't supplying the full 200 amps all the time. I do have it wired where the shop and barns pulls off a 50 amp aux plug on the generator rather than feeding from the main panel.

Thats a long answer to say best to take pencil and paper down to the breaker box and start adding up potential loads, then take the list and look at realistic loads when the power is off.

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12-28-2013 18:04:35

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 Re: pto generators in reply to Jimmy 2013, 12-28-2013 07:34:35  
Well,electric heat and hot water,stove etc. and a bunch more info needed to even make a educated reply.


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Aaron SEIA

12-28-2013 08:32:03

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 Re: pto generators in reply to Jimmy 2013, 12-28-2013 07:34:35  
What do you plan on running? Electric water heater, dryer, and stove/oven vs gas for each will change the math a lot. Well water or city? What kind of heat, would you run A/C in the summer if needed? Figure out what you would want to run in your house and add up the amps/watts for all. Then go the next size bigger.


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12-28-2013 08:29:59

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 Re: pto generators in reply to Jimmy 2013, 12-28-2013 07:34:35  
Very hard to say. Info like is it gas or electric heat. Kitchen stove gas or electric? Then what all do you want/need turned on etc etc etc. To answer that question you would need to figure out how many watts every thing uses then add at least 25% for what it takes to start up multiple motors etc. My place is all electric and a 6.5KW unit will not run the whole house

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