MEP-003A hook up question

Scoobyshep

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Florida
Interesting Scooby. That would be tough working with my panel I would suspect.
If all you need is an applied voltage to transfer, pretty easy. Other than that youd need a sense line to detect loss (and return) of utility

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Coug

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Thank You for the information. I was just thinking of family members switching it over, i can do it easily. Also if I was to purchase a Generac small standby propane generator say a 17 kw to power this panel would that be overkill for this panel and would a 17k run ok on my 330 gal propane tank. It just powers the stove burners and very rarely the heat pump back up gas furnace. That way I could use the auto function I suppose. Just thinking out loud.
for the 17k on that size tank, it really depends on how the tank is installed and how cold it gets where you are.
Propane turns to vapor inside the tank, then that vapor is what's drawn off to be burned. If the propane level is low or the temp is too low, then the propane might not be able to vaporize quickly enough to keep everything operating properly. There are charts out there for LP tank vaporization rates at various temperatures.
1kw is approx 16k btus of energy, 1 gallon propane is approx 92k btus. 6kw power per gallon of propane burned. At full load (really you want to keep it around 80% or less) of about 15kw you'll be burning around 2.5 gallons of propane per hour. In reality it would be less because most heavy loads tend to cycle on and off as needed, but at best with a full (85% or so) tank you'd have around 100 hours of run time. At that point the propane company has to come refill the tank before you can use the gen any more, but from the sounds of it unless it's a major disaster you won't be without power that often.

As for the size, a 17kw generator would be fine with this panel. Max load for this panel is 125 amps of 240V, which roughly comes to 30kw of power. (just verified at your link above, max gen size 30kw) so any air cooled home standby generator would work just fine.
The current generation of Generac standby generator requires at least 6 wires run to it, 3 for the transfer switch mechanism, 2 for the sensing leads, and one for the battery charge circuit.


You might have to get the regulator on the propane tank upgraded if you did this, by itself at full load you could draw over 250k BTUs per hour, many regulators are rated at that much, so if your stove or furnace were on you'd be overloading it. Usually not an issue for the same reason as the run time fuel use calculations, but something to keep in mind.
 

Coug

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Here is the comparison between the two gen types.

The Generac you'd hear run during it's test cycle every week/2 weeks/monthly (however you have it set up)
it would come on automatically when needed, transfer automatically, etc.
The fuel supply is much harder to refill in case of emergency.
Larger power output, and quieter operation.
lots of electronics built in that if anything fails you have to get the parts from generac or generac reseller.
While I've known units that have 4500 hours on them, it isn't as common. Most end up falling apart from age with at most a few hundred hours of run time, and you can usually expect them to last 10-15 years with basic care. Less if near salt water.

The MEP-003 runs off fuel you can buy at most fuel stations.
You have to manually operate everything (though if you want to spend the money anything is possible)
designed for prime power, so running for weeks or months on end with just oil changes and basic maintenance is not a big deal.
Parts are less common, have to find them on the internet, though some are available through local parts stores.
very very loud and no real way to quiet it down to reasonable levels.


Basically, if all you're really planning for is the occasional outage that might last a few days but no more than a week, you have lots of refrigerated/frozen food, or have some other reason why the power MUST be on right away even if nobody is home and you are commonly a long distance away, the Generac is a decent way to go. Not the best generators in the world, but a decent product for the price. Generac also throws in an extended warranty with new gen install several times a year, so waiting for one of them you can get a 5, 7, or 10 year extended parts, labor, and travel covered for repairs warranty (standard is 2 years full coverage, 5 years for major component parts only)

If you are expecting TEOTWAWKI (the end of the world as we know it) or expect power to be off for weeks at a time, you're not worried about the fridge/freezers too much or you don't travel too far away from home, don't care about noise, and don't need everything automated, plus have a decent understanding of how it works, ability to read repair manuals, and willing to spend some money to stockpile some common failure parts plus maintenance items, then the MEP is for you.
 

bones1

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Southern Maryland
Most excellent reply sir. You have convinced me to forget automating the process and better yet stick with the mep-003A I have. It is trailer-mounted and has the ASK kit on it so it's not terribly noisy. Now all I have to do is plug it in and test the 5 yr old setup.
 
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