Standy Generator Parts Compatibility

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Old 11-19-13, 05:58 AM
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Standy Generator Parts Compatibility

I wanted an automatic standby generator to us a backup for the furnace, water pump, refrigerator and a few lights. I was thinking I could get buy with a small generator so I went ahead and got a new GE 8kw standby generator(model #040444). This generator is normally packaged with a 50 amp switch and controller for a limited number of circuits. I did not get the prepackaged switch.

Can I use any automatic transfer switch as long as it's amp rating is "greater" then the amp capacity of the generator as long as I keep the number circuits from the switch matching the capacity of the generator? I'm asking this because I have a 200amp main panel and I might want to either put in a 100 or 200 amp transfer switch so the generator may be upgraded with a larger generator unit in the future.
 

Last edited by xk49jr; 11-19-13 at 06:14 AM.
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Old 11-19-13, 07:26 AM
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Can I use any automatic transfer switch as long as it's amp rating is "greater" then the amp capacity of the generator as long as I keep the number circuits from the switch matching the capacity of the generator?
Sure, as long as the transfer switch you buy is compatible with the generator. Most transfer switches for larger generators (50-60 KW on up) are the brain behind sensing the utility, starting the generator and switching the load. Most smaller and residential generators have a controller built in to them that are the brain. Your generator likely has a controller and has to be able to communicate with the transfer switch. My guess is what you really have is a Generac generator private labelled with the GE name.

I'm asking this because I have a 200amp main panel and I might want to either put in a 100 or 200 amp transfer switch so the generator may be upgraded with a larger generator unit in the future.
If you mean installing the transfer switch ahead of the service panel the transfer switch must be service entrance rated. In this kind of installation, the generator must have capacity to serve the entire calculated load OR have load shedding capability which I seriously doubt an 8 KW unit will have.

My best advice is to buy and install the transfer switch intended for this generator.
 
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