Transfer Panel UPDATE!

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  #1  
Old 04-19-06, 03:33 AM
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Location: Sterling Heights
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Transfer Panel UPDATE!

We got the transfer panel installed in my home yesterday; everything went as planned.

A couple of interesting things though.....The "Gen-Tran" transfer sub-panel came with # 4 conductors to hook into the main panel but the supplied neutral and ground wires were #12's. My electrician upgraded those to #10's. I thought that was a good idea on his part.

When we fired up the generator, I was surprised at how much could run off the 5000 watt generator. He balanced the loads pretty good. I had nearly every light on in the house, two refrigerators, two televisions and the furnace still started without a problem.......although on start-up it peaked the meters for a spit second. Normally, in a power outage I wouldn't be running that much. I'd be more careful but we wanted to test a full load situation.

The other thing I noticed is that Laser Printers draw heck of A LOT of current at start-up. At first, something was pegging the meters. We shut off all the breakers except for the one causing the surges, and then I started unplugging things until we found the source. I have two Laser printers in my office and they were the culprits. Itís amazing how much current they draw. I'll have put a switch on them to shut them off when I'm on generator power.

Thanks to all that gave me answers when I asked. I got most of my info from this site and it really helped. Even my electrician was impressed with how much I knew about doing the particular job!
Phil
 
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  #2  
Old 04-19-06, 07:24 AM
vmweenie
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Originally Posted by Philossifer
The other thing I noticed is that Laser Printers draw heck of A LOT of current at start-up. At first, something was pegging the meters. We shut off all the breakers except for the one causing the surges, and then I started unplugging things until we found the source. I have two Laser printers in my office and they were the culprits. It’s amazing how much current they draw. I'll have put a switch on them to shut them off when I'm on generator power.
Laser printers work (in part) by fusing the toner to the paper - they actually melt the toner onto the page. You've noticed that the paper is warm when it comes out - there's a heater in there that gets much hotter than you'd think just given the warmth of the paper. That's why laser printers generally aren't available immediately after turning them on, like a bubble printer. Takes a while for that filament to come up to temp.

Need for heat = Amps

I assume these are desktop printers? I'm curious - just how much current were they drawing?
 
  #3  
Old 04-19-06, 08:53 AM
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Originally Posted by vmweenie
I assume these are desktop printers? I'm curious - just how much current were they drawing?
vm,
Yes, they are desktop printers but one is quite large, it's a Sharp AL1540CS printer/copier and the other is a Brother HL-1440 printer only.

Checking them with an amp meter. The copier draws 10 amps for about 4 seconds at start-up then it levels off to about 7 amps for just under a minute; then it settles in to about a .5 amp draw. I didn't wait but I assume when it goes into it's sleep mode, the amp draw drops very low or to nothing at all.

The Brother pulled 8 amps at start-up for the first few seconds; then leveled off to about 6 amps for just under a minute and then dropped to .2 amps after that.

So you can see, when both printers are turned on at the same time, it's a pretty hefty load. Even after the initial pull, they're still pulling nearly 15 amps for the first minute.
That's what was spiking the meters on the transfer switch.
Phil
 
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