Generator connection choices

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Daybreak

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Howdy,
Generator connection choices.
For safety of yourself, family, equipment and utility workers, properly connect generators.
Some methods can be do it yourself to a certain point. Electricians and your Utility will be involved as well.

Laws vary from state to state, and from country to country. You obviously need to do your homework with what is required for where you live.

Maybe one of the easiest methods would be a interlock kit. There are many manufacturers out there. Some times its even easier to build it in from the start. Existing work- you can see if your current electrical panel has a interlock kit available. The interlock plate slides into position to let your dual pole generator feed power the panel instead of the main service breaker. The interlock makes sure only one of them can be ON.

There are lots of ways to connect a generator. You want to do it correctly and safely.

Power panel interlock =
If you have a mainstream panel (GE, Square D, Siemens, etc) there probably is a interlock kit available. It makes it so the main circuit breaker has to be off for the generator breaker is on. The only limit would be the size of dual pole breaker which fits in your panel.
interlock.jpg

Break out generator panel =
Other methods are through a generator transfer panel.
They are sold by different manufacturers and come in many sizes. To me, they are limiting by the number of spaces of what you could connect.
generator break out.jpg

Other methods are through a behind the meter device.
This works well for existing service. A special collar is placed behind your utility meter. Most times this can be installed in about 5 minutes. They are in a 30amp and a 50amp connection size. Generlink is usually sourced through your utility. You simply use your electrical panel circuit breakers for what you want running. (NOTE; to the size of your generator )You use a special cord connection at the bottom of the collar.
(Through my local utility)
generlink.jpggenerlink cord.jpg

For larger connection and for larger amperage service
PSP Products pdf brochure, electromn info pdf is a product which is similar to the Generlink product. A special collar is mounted behind the meter.
Below is my central farm distribution with a TC-200M26W shows a continuous generator rating of 40KW and a peak of 48KW
(Through my local utility)
Transconnect 1.jpgTransconnect 2.jpgTransconnect.jpgmeter panel hookup.jpg

Other methods are through a DPDT switch. (double pole double throw) manual type switch. They too range in manufacturers and amperage. They also come in a full automatic type transfer switch.
There are of course many other ways to make a connection. Just do it correctly. Keep the linemen alive! [thumbzup]
 

Daybreak

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Howdy,
If you are connecting a generator to your house. Make sure you use a 4 wire connection, and remove the bonding strap on the generator. You will be making use of your house grounding system
 

Crawdaddy

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Are the Anderson Powerpole connectors in the panel as shown an acceptable code-compliant way to hook up large gensets to transfer switches? I've been trying to find a connector to tie my MEP-003a to my house interlock that was both weather resistant, safe, and could carry the current and that would fit the bill nicely.
 

Daybreak

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Are the Anderson Powerpole connectors in the panel as shown an acceptable code-compliant way to hook up large gensets to transfer switches? I've been trying to find a connector to tie my MEP-003a to my house interlock that was both weather resistant, safe, and could carry the current and that would fit the bill nicely.
Howdy,
Here, in my local it is. It was installed by my local utility since they had to remove the meter and put the collar on. They then attached the brains box, and that is where we mounted the Anderson dual powerpole SB350 plug. Hooked up and verified with my utility standing there with his meter double checking each of the 4 cables. The cable set is dual SB350 at each end with 2/0 AWG welding cables.
SB350 hookup.jpgPTO back panel hookup.jpg
 

TNriverjet

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Howdy,
If you have ever connected and dis-connected the Anderson Powerpole connectors.... they will not simply come apart.
It looks like the outlet cover may be designed to rest over the plug handle. Does that also provide a secondary level of vibration protection?
 

csheath

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At my house I went with a interlock kit on the panel and wired the breaker to a 50 amp RV box on the outside of the house. I also put a 50 amp RV box on the generator itself. I purchased a 36 foot RV cord off that auction site for about $100. It had 6 gauge wire for all 4 wires. I cut the female end off and replaced it with another male. I also used some of that cord for wiring the boxes to the house and generator and had some wire left over. The downside to the way I did it is if you were dumb enough to connect the cord to a running generator and not have it connected to the house you could touch a live male end. If I were doing it over I would get a 50 amp power inlet box and put a regular generator cord end on the house side.

The beauty of having an RV outlet on the generator is I put the same plug on my load bank so hooking that up is just unplugging the house cord and plugging in the load bank.

I got tired of getting the house cable out and plugging that in along with everything else, usually in the rain, so I have been leaving my house cable connected. When the power fails I just have to turn the main off, turn off a few double pole loads I don't need, hold the interlock up, and turn the generator breaker on. then I just start the generator and toggle the interrupt switch and I'm back in business.
 
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Guyfang

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At my house I went with a interlock kit on the panel and wired the breaker to a 50 amp RV box on the outside of the house. I also put a 50 amp RV box on the generator itself. I purchased a 36 foot RV cord off that auction site for about $100. It had 6 gauge wire for all 4 wires. I cut the female end off and replaced it with another male. I also used some of that cord for wiring the boxes to the house and generator and had some wire left over. The downside to the way I did it is if you were dumb enough to connect the cord to a running generator and not have it connected to the house you could touch a live male end. If I were doing it over I would get a 50 amp power inlet box and put a regular generator cord end on the house side.

The beauty of having an RV outlet on the generator is I put the same plug on my load bank so hooking that up is just unplugging the house cord and plugging in the load bank.

I got tired of getting the house cable out and plugging that in along with everything else, usually in the rain, so I have been leaving my house cable connected. When the power fails I just have to turn the main off, turn off a few double pole loads I don't need, hold the interlock up, and turn the generator breaker on. then I just start the generator and toggle the interrupt switch and I'm back in business.
I wasn't dumb enough to connect, (or make) such a cable. But I was unlucky enough to grab one, that someone else had had made, and hooked up. One end hooked to a power output. I beat that ******** with a broom handle until he managed to get past me to the door. We still don't speak, and that was 1995. I believe, if I were you, and had nothing to do on a rainy day, I just might change that. I know it works, but when I read your post, I could feel the voltage running through me.
 

csheath

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I wasn't dumb enough to connect, (or make) such a cable. But I was unlucky enough to grab one, that someone else had had made, and hooked up. One end hooked to a power output. I beat that ******** with a broom handle until he managed to get past me to the door. We still don't speak, and that was 1995. I believe, if I were you, and had nothing to do on a rainy day, I just might change that. I know it works, but when I read your post, I could feel the voltage running through me.
It is on my mind but I don't forsee anyone else ever handling it other than me. I might change it out one of these days. I would have definitely gone that route if I found it in 50 amp when doing the original connection. For some reason back then all I could find in searches were the 30 amp version so I went the way I did. I have since found the 50 amp power inlet box and plug but haven't got around to spending the extra bucks to back track.
 
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Daybreak

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It looks like the outlet cover may be designed to rest over the plug handle. Does that also provide a secondary level of vibration protection?
Howdy,
Those are Anderson SB350 plugs. Capable of 350 amps. The cord is 4 wires of 2/0 welding line. And its overkill for a 30kw generator.
 

jcollings

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Howdy,

If you are connecting a generator to your house. Make sure you use a 4 wire connection, and remove the bonding strap on the generator. You will be making use of your house grounding system
Where is the bonding strap?
On mep803a

Thank you,
 

RJM27

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I wasn't dumb enough to connect, (or make) such a cable. But I was unlucky enough to grab one, that someone else had had made, and hooked up. One end hooked to a power output. I beat that ******** with a broom handle until he managed to get past me to the door. We still don't speak, and that was 1995. I believe, if I were you, and had nothing to do on a rainy day, I just might change that. I know it works, but when I read your post, I could feel the voltage running through me.
A few years back and prior to my first Mep purchase I had a big box store Generator, which someone made a suicide cord up for. It was one of those hurry up days and God awful weather when I grabbed the wrong end. Enough said, just get rid of it, lucky to still be here.
 

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jcollings

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From what member Daybreak replied to me on this topic is that strap is only removed if you're using your household grounding system if you're using your unit to power your home.
 

Daybreak

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Howdy,

Connected to a house panel, you use 4 wires from that panel to your generator, bonding strap removed since you are using the service panel grounding system.


In the field, ground rod in place, bonding strap in place.
 
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