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Will SCE Turn Your Power Off For An Hour This Week?

Angler

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Question for you guys with back up generators- do you have these wired into your house electrical via transfer switch? Or just use extension cords to power the essentials like fridge/freezers etc?
I just turn off my solar and turn off the main breaker. I use 2 male to male extension cord connectors and and plug in the extension cords into 2 different 20amp plugs. Powers the whole house on a honda 3000 without the house AC. But I am able to use a portable 120v AC.
 

Echo Lodge

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I just turn off my solar and turn off the main breaker. I use 2 male to male extension cord connectors and and plug in the extension cords into 2 different 20amp plugs. Powers the whole house on a honda 3000 without the house AC. But I am able to use a portable 120v AC.
Great idea. I was going to plug into the 30 amp output on the generator and make a suicide plug to connect to my 50 Amp 125/250-Volt NEMA 14-50R. Your idea is much simpler!
 

Angler

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Great idea. I was going to plug into the 30 amp output on the generator and make a suicide plug to connect to my 50 Amp 125/250-Volt NEMA 14-50R. Your idea is much simpler!
Make sure you solar is disconnected. Your system might think AC is back on, and start producing juice. It will fry your generator.
 

77charger

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I just turn off my solar and turn off the main breaker. I use 2 male to male extension cord connectors and and plug in the extension cords into 2 different 20amp plugs. Powers the whole house on a honda 3000 without the house AC. But I am able to use a portable 120v AC.
My old house i didnt have solar but had power out once so i made a male to male cord.Then disconnected the main breaker plugged in i was good to go i plugged into washroom but didnt have every power outlet hot but had the basics like fridge and tvs.Think most people dont understand they must turn off the main breaker!Reason for transfer switches and why plugging generator into house aint recomended cause some dont get it on how to do safely.
 

BasilHayden

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Great idea. I was going to plug into the 30 amp output on the generator and make a suicide plug to connect to my 50 Amp 125/250-Volt NEMA 14-50R. Your idea is much simpler!
Please be careful when doing this. I know you both and when done properly it will work, but is definately not the correct way to do it. I may have a solution end of year for you that will make this much more simple. I'll be in touch.
 

Taboma

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Please be careful when doing this. I know you both and when done properly it will work, but is definately not the correct way to do it. I may have a solution end of year for you that will make this much more simple. I'll be in touch.
Might I suggest sharing your end of year solution with the group. Your knowledge is always appreciated, even by those of us who know it all :rolleyes: 😅
Just some of us old "Pros" don't confess on a public forum some solutions that should not be attempted by the average DIYer and certainly wouldn't ever recommend them.

There's certainly a multitude of perfectly legal ways to skin the "power outage kittie", problem is, at least in our case, power outages are so rare, it's hard to make a large investment in that regard.

Solved our SDG&E bills 10 years ago, last year is the first True-Up in 10 we've owed, but we could afford the $ 34.00 😁

But I've always found your input worth far more than $ .02 👍👍👍
 

Echo Lodge

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Please be careful when doing this. I know you both and when done properly it will work, but is definately not the correct way to do it. I may have a solution end of year for you that will make this much more simple. I'll be in touch.
Even a small battery backup that would allow my solar to produce during an outage would be great. It would help while the sun is out anyways. But as mentioned. Its a big investment for as rare as the outages happen. When the power companies eventually take away NET Metering battery will be a must.


Or

 
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Taboma

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Even a small battery backup that would allow my solar to produce during an outage would be great. It would help while the sun is out anyways. But as mentioned. Its a big investment for as rare as the outages happen. When the power companies eventually take away NET Metering battery will be a must.


Or


Although Mr Palomar (BasilHayden) is the man with the straight scoop, I get extremely frustrated trying to wade through all the marketing bullshit to find the real meat of the subject with these various battery backup systems.
In general, when I've been able to find any actual specifications, I've been disappointed with their maximum allowable (Peak) output capabilities.
I do realize there's more competition for this market and it's advancing and changing.
Unless conditions deteriorate considerably, my Honda generator will keep it's job for the couple of times a year (If even that) I've needed backup power.
 

Angler

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Please be careful when doing this. I know you both and when done properly it will work, but is definately not the correct way to do it. I may have a solution end of year for you that will make this much more simple. I'll be in touch.
Looking forward to it!
 

BasilHayden

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Although Mr Palomar (BasilHayden) is the man with the straight scoop, I get extremely frustrated trying to wade through all the marketing bullshit to find the real meat of the subject with these various battery backup systems.
In general, when I've been able to find any actual specifications, I've been disappointed with their maximum allowable (Peak) output capabilities.
I do realize there's more competition for this market and it's advancing and changing.
Unless conditions deteriorate considerably, my Honda generator will keep it's job for the couple of times a year (If even that) I've needed backup power.
Not enough time to get in detail right now, so short version. Generator is cheaper, but requires you to play games and frankly most of the setups discussed are not even close to code compliant. Batteries are most all not made to run Off-Grid, and if they are able to run off grid even fewer allow the solar to function legitimately at the same time. Does that stop unscrupulous salespeople from lying to you, no. Does that even stop some of those contractors to install them without isolating the solar, no. What will happen with most will be Voltage runaway and then solar will crash due to the Voltage and/or frequency going out of spec. What @wash11 has is very different than the crap Mr. Musk and others are pushing.

I do believe that we will shortly have a system that will allow the solar to function in an off grid (consumption) mode and that has the ability to supply enough amperage to effectively replace the smaller gensets most are using. This will not be close to free, most likely still north of 10k but when not using it for off grid it could help pay for itself by doing rate arbitrage. Just dont believe their lies that it will pay for itself. To even get close you lose all hope of an off grid helper.

For this crowd, best bet is to stick with the gensets, I just wish you would use real transfer switches for safety. Hope that helped.
 

Taboma

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Not enough time to get in detail right now, so short version. Generator is cheaper, but requires you to play games and frankly most of the setups discussed are not even close to code compliant. Batteries are most all not made to run Off-Grid, and if they are able to run off grid even fewer allow the solar to function legitimately at the same time. Does that stop unscrupulous salespeople from lying to you, no. Does that even stop some of those contractors to install them without isolating the solar, no. What will happen with most will be Voltage runaway and then solar will crash due to the Voltage and/or frequency going out of spec. What @wash11 has is very different than the crap Mr. Musk and others are pushing.

I do believe that we will shortly have a system that will allow the solar to function in an off grid (consumption) mode and that has the ability to supply enough amperage to effectively replace the smaller gensets most are using. This will not be close to free, most likely still north of 10k but when not using it for off grid it could help pay for itself by doing rate arbitrage. Just dont believe their lies that it will pay for itself. To even get close you lose all hope of an off grid helper.

For this crowd, best bet is to stick with the gensets, I just wish you would use real transfer switches for safety. Hope that helped.

Excellent response and thanks for taking your time to contribute that most useful information. 👏


I also agree 100% on the transfer switch being the only safe option for back feeding your panels. The only negative to the complete system transfer switch, is without looking at your utility meter, it's often challenging to know when your power has been restored. Unless you've got some good buddy neighbor who's not jealous that you're watching TV and he's not and he'll text you.
 

rrrr

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Not enough time to get in detail right now, so short version. Generator is cheaper, but requires you to play games and frankly most of the setups discussed are not even close to code compliant.

For this crowd, best bet is to stick with the gensets, I just wish you would use real transfer switches for safety. Hope that helped.
And that's all I have to say about that.

 

HitIt

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If you do decide to use a 120V generator to power both sides of your panel via 2 suicide cords or another method.... MAKE SURE TO FLIP ALL 240V BREAKERS!!! If you don't, you could royally fuck up those pieces of equipment.

And of course, flip the main.... but ya'll already knew that.
 

socal0487

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Thanks to Andy and Palomar Solar... I am still pushing back energy to SCE's grid when my AC is on. Well, until the sun goes down!!!;)
I’ve heard Edison will not shut the power off to someone who has solar. Is that true?
 

hallett21

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I’ve heard Edison will not shut the power off to someone who has solar. Is that true?


When they cut power it’s to certain zones /neighborhoods. 3-4 homes can be fed by one transformer. No way to discriminate who has solar and who doesn’t.
 
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BasilHayden

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Excellent response and thanks for taking your time to contribute that most useful information. 👏


I also agree 100% on the transfer switch being the only safe option for back feeding your panels. The only negative to the complete system transfer switch, is without looking at your utility meter, it's often challenging to know when your power has been restored. Unless you've got some good buddy neighbor who's not jealous that you're watching TV and he's not and he'll text you.
Auto transfer switch will fix that, they are very reasonable these days, look on amazon or other online "dealers" at the generac and kohler units.
 

BasilHayden

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And that's all I have to say about that.

LOL, quite a bit more to be said, but...who listens. No joke I had a guy today think I am completely full of shit because I am not willing to backfeed a split 400a panel with a battery system that will only work if you isolate the essential loads. He knows better, he can backfeed the whole house with his 4k genset he pulls home from the shop. Thank you much sir, good luck with your battery search. Frustration was I had designed it so I could do it theoretically, but he had already figured it out and I was full of shit. Oh well
 

Halvecto

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Thanks to Andy and Palomar Solar... I am still pushing back energy to SCE's grid when my AC is on. Well, until the sun goes down!!!;)
Is your home home with solar still connected to the utility, in order to send excess back; will a rolling outage still affect you? Is it possible for the address to be bypassed by the blackout?
 

Taboma

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Auto transfer switch will fix that, they are very reasonable these days, look on amazon or other online "dealers" at the generac and kohler units.

Certainly the way to go when using an permanently installed backup genny.
I was referring to manual xfer switches used with portable gens, where you're disconnecting and backfeeding the entire main panel.
If you have a transfer switch isolated dedicated panel with only your critical loads, then your other loads aren't isolated and you'll know when power is restored.

My son's installing Kohlers now after having to many issues with Generacs letting down some of his better clients when they needed them most.
 

Echo Lodge

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Is your home home with solar still connected to the utility, in order to send excess back; will a rolling outage still affect you? Is it possible for the address to be bypassed by the blackout?
I am connected to SCE. When they turned my neighborhood off on the 14th and I was dark like everyone else.
 

Halvecto

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I am connected to SCE. When they turned my neighborhood off on the 14th and I was dark like everyone else.
Thanks for the reply. So you still have an SCE account and pay the basic service fee, but the solar drastically reduces it to near or at zero?

Is the remedy for avoiding blackout the battery systems that @BasilHayden is referencing?
 

Taboma

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Thanks for the reply. So you still have an SCE account and pay the basic service fee, but the solar drastically reduces it to near or at zero?

Is the remedy for avoiding blackout the battery systems that @BasilHayden is referencing?

Basil addressed this above. Depends what you mean by "remedy" . Couple of lighting circuits and keeping a frig or freezer going ?
Or being able to run your AC and most other circuits similar to normal ?

In general the battery solution is expensive and max output isn't impressive vs cost at this time. For now, a generator sized to suit your needs, is a more viable cost effective option. How elaborate the installation and associated costs, all dependent on your needs and what you can afford, relative of course, to just how many times a year this occurs.
If you're in a high fire risk area susceptible to high winds and frequent utility power interruptions, then a larger more permanent installation might be your solution.


I do not believe Mr Palomar currently views battery backups as a cost effective solution, yet.
 

Echo Lodge

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Thanks for the reply. So you still have an SCE account and pay the basic service fee, but the solar drastically reduces it to near or at zero?

Is the remedy for avoiding blackout the battery systems that @BasilHayden is referencing?
Yes, I am a SCE customer. I always over produce so SCE gives me credits when I am pushing back to the grid (both peak and non peak credit). They charge me about $11 a month to be connected to their grid if I do not use more than I produce. I got $200 back last year when SCE NET me out. NET happens once a year where SCE gives you .03 cents a kWh for your over production. We have been running the AC last few days so below you see I am using more then I am producing. All good though as I have a lot of kWh in my SCE piggy bank.

SCE.JPG


Yes, a battery would allow me to store my over production in it and allow me to power my house for a period of time. The time is based on how much storage you want to pay for. Not really worth in as Andy mentioned. If and when SCE kills NET Metering it will force us all with solar to buy battery backups as we will want to store the over production rather then give to SCE for free.
 

BasilHayden

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Basil addressed this above. Depends what you mean by "remedy" . Couple of lighting circuits and keeping a frig or freezer going ?
Or being able to run your AC and most other circuits similar to normal ?

In general the battery solution is expensive and max output isn't impressive vs cost at this time. For now, a generator sized to suit your needs, is a more viable cost effective option. How elaborate the installation and associated costs, all dependent on your needs and what you can afford, relative of course, to just how many times a year this occurs.
If you're in a high fire risk area susceptible to high winds and frequent utility power interruptions, then a larger more permanent installation might be your solution.


I do not believe Mr Palomar currently views battery backups as a cost effective solution, yet.

^^^^^
Very well said,

For the right person, "in a high fire risk area susceptible to high winds and frequent utility power interruptions" we can take advantage of some "rebates" to make this a tough deal to pass up, otherwise a well done genset is the less costly solution today. Tech is moving very fast. I spent an hour on a call today with the engineering team for our manufacturer of choice advising what is needed to make it work. They are listening and its getting close.
 
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