Generator breaker panels

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Old 08-21-09, 03:42 AM
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Generator breaker panels

What are my options in hooking up a gen to all my circuits of my current panel? Is there a replacement panel that has the GEN and MAIN throws tied together that I can use 30 slots for?

I have seen a couple but looks like it's supposed to be used with only a few dedicated circuits to be used in conjunction with the main panel.

I'm looking for options other than the Interlock kit. Also, is it a major PITA to swap panels or just tedious?

Wanted to add it is an older CH panel.
 
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Old 08-21-09, 04:40 AM
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You can google "gen ready load center" and you'll see some 200 amp panels that are generator ready. Usually about $4-500(not including breakers) Mostly made by Siemens



You can also get just a transfer switch, whether manual or automatic, and have it switch your panel. But there would be a lot of expense and grounding/bonding rules will change.

The interlock kit is sounding better, yeah?
I know Cutler Hammer makes has a cover with the interlock kit already installed for about $140. not sure if they have one for the CH panels.
 
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Old 08-21-09, 05:21 AM
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Square D is also making a panel setup for a generator.

Changing a panel is very labor intensive as you need to remove all the cables from the enclosure and then reinstall the same.
 
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Old 08-21-09, 08:29 AM
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Another option is to just get a big three position switch MAIN - OFF - GEN in 100A or 200A and install it right after the meter. This option requires less work inside, but the switch is pretty expensive.

Any option other than the interlock kit requires a lot of labor.

A critical question is if you want something for a standby generator that automatically starts the gen and transfers power or if you're doing the manual hookup and switch flipping.
 
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Old 08-21-09, 06:49 PM
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Originally Posted by ibpooks View Post
A critical question is if you want something for a standby generator that automatically starts the gen and transfers power or if you're doing the manual hookup and switch flipping.

Man hookup and switch flipping.
 
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Old 08-21-09, 07:30 PM
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The Achilles heel of the Siemens load center is it only allows for 18 slots to be powered under the generator instead of all 30.
 
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Old 08-21-09, 09:40 PM
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You generally do not want to power all the slots from the generator. For most installations you would want to exclude the air conditioner, water heater, spa, cloths dryer, power tools, welder, etc from the generator as it would stall the unit out if any of those cycled on under generator power anyway.
 
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Old 08-22-09, 06:24 AM
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I agree, it's just the way the panel is distributing all the circuits is the problem, not very well thought out.

I will be wary of the loads and will shut everything down to run the septic or well. My foyer lights work with my basement lights, bathroom lights with outside lights, no seperate breaker for the fridge.
 
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Old 08-22-09, 06:50 AM
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Here's what I have come across and seems to have what I want...including the wattmeters.

Protection even if the cover is removed is a plus.

I don't mind the labor switching it out, just feel it's more bang for the buck.

What do you think?? any experience with this panel.

TTV2005C Pro/Tran Q Series | Product Details | Reliance Controls Corporation

 
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Old 08-22-09, 07:16 AM
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That will be fine.
If you have an indoor panel be sure to get that TTV2005C, (that's the indoor panel) but your pic shows an outdoor.

What's also good is it will take several different brand breakers(Siemens, Square D, Murray, Cutler-hammer BR) Too bad you can't reuse your old ones though.

I haven't had any experience with this particular panel, but a panel is a panel. I'd be willing to bet it's a Siemens anyway.
 
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Old 08-22-09, 07:52 AM
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Except for the wattmeters I really don't see the advantage over the interlock kit for $150 that bolts on. Changing the panel out is labor intensive. When I do basically the same thing I estimate 8 hours or more, all in the dark.

What brand breakers does the Reliance panel use?
 
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Old 08-22-09, 08:06 AM
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Originally Posted by pcboss View Post

What brand breakers does the Reliance panel use?
Siemens, Square D, Murray, Cutler-hammer BR
Forgot to add westinghouse too.
 
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Old 08-22-09, 08:10 AM
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Originally Posted by wirenut1110 View Post
That will be fine.
If you have an indoor panel be sure to get that TTV2005C, (that's the indoor panel) but your pic shows an outdoor.
The pic is the TTV2005C at least from their website, what is different with the indoor panel?

I feel wattmeters are a must, how else will you tell the actual load? Just a personal preference honestly,I feel it eliminates guesswork and I can balance the load easier...and that's about $100 there.

This panel is a much cleaner install, again I don't mind the labor...we have electricians in the family so that's a huge plus, just more beer I need to get.

With the Siemens panel I can get 18 circuits, this one I get the entire panel.

With the Interlock kit I was planning on installing watt meters as well, so for $180 more I can get a few more slots and should keep the inspectors happy upon resell.

The breakers are a bummer but not deeply saddened by it. If the Interlock was priced better I would consider it but my conscience is keeping me from spending $150 for a piece of plate aluminum.

If I was in the market for a digital camera and the only ones offered were $5K pro DSLR's and a cheap point and shoot, and the P&S was $4800 and just because it was a cheaper alternative...should I get it or splurge for the nicer camera?

That's my take on it and while it's not apples and oranges, I feel in the end it's worth the extra $180....just an opinion though, not a rant.
 
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Old 08-22-09, 08:17 AM
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O.K.....coffee has kicked in, I see the difference.
 
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Old 08-22-09, 08:19 AM
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Have you checked to see if CH still makes an interlock plate that will fit you panel?
 
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Old 08-22-09, 08:31 AM
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I was going to send an E-mail or try to call on Monday. Checked out the site but couldn't find anything yet.
 
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Old 08-23-09, 08:00 AM
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Try this link.

CH Style 3/4-inch Loadcenters Accessories Renewal Parts

Look down the right side for the interlocks.

Or try the first hit on this one.

Search Results - Eaton Corporation
 
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Old 09-05-09, 12:34 PM
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Thanks for all the help...went with the Reliance TTV2005CE with the digital watt-meters and voltage monitor.....now just need half a day without power and some swear words and all should be good Beer 4U2
 
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Old 09-06-09, 08:50 AM
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Also be aware that new generators come with a GFCI. This is an OSHA required thing for work sites.

But when you connect that GFCI to a transfer switch, it "sees" the neutral bonded to the ground (at the main panel)and this trips the GFCI!

One solution is a neutral switching transfer switch.

Then here is one generator manufacturer's different solution for this problem...
http://www.gen-tran.com/assets/pdfs/...Bulletin20.pdf
 
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