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For those making storm/hurricane preparations

Wayne 440

Registered
Originally Posted by pegasuspinto (slightly edited)

Many people will be hitting this forum over the next days and weeks, with their power out, and either trying to get an old generator to carry them through or perhaps with a new one that quit on you. But long after this storm is gone, it will still be killing. I GUARANTEE that someone will be electrocuted. And I GUARANTEE that MULTIPLE households will be devastated or wiped out by carbon monoxide poisoning. In other words, someone's neighbor, family, or first responders will get the pleasure of prying open a strangely quiet house and being greeted by the smell of a dead family. Others will be 'more lucky' and the kids will find their parents dead, or vice versa. And I suspect the count of people who are made sick but survive is much higher. I know this is gruesome but I'm trying to drive home that the fumes from a running engine can and will kill you, and the only symptom may be you feel a bit tired and want to go to sleep.

Your generator MUST NOT BE IN OR NEAR YOUR HOUSE. Chain it to a tree or chain it to your neighbors upside down boat in your back yard, or if you can't secure it, just take the risk it gets stolen, but don't die. NOT in your garage, carport, or ANY structure 'attached' to a occupied area.

Some of you will be under stress and feeling a lot of pressure to get the power on, maybe you have a medications in the fridge, or a relative who does not do well when the heat and AC is off. Many of you may know little about electricity and wiring. Please remember that voltage KILLS even after a hurricane, even if you think you 'really really' need the power. And backfeeding is illegal and very dangerous. You're backfeeding if you got a double ended power cord that plugs the generator into your drier outlet. You're backfeeding any time that if you switch the main breaker on, you can energize the outgoing line. It's a horrid idea but if you just HAVE to do it, make sure your main utility breaker is OFF and LOCKED UP. Put the key in YOUR pocket. Keep it there till the generator is disconnected and put away. And if you come here for help after accidentally kicking the main breaker on and smoking your generator, be aware that most of us are not too forgiving. Also it's very likely you have destroyed some very expensive parts of your generator.

Feel free to ask questions and there are a lot of 'experts' on this board who will try to help. Many of us make a living with generators and we can help you. But please stay aware of your own limitations and be patient-it may take a few hours to get an answer in some cases. Post a make, model, serial, and maybe some pictures, and that will help a lot.

Stay safe!
 

len k

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
12/12/2018
Put gen OUTSIDE, not near houses and aim exhaust AWAY from houses.

Easy enough to secure a gen in open area.... chain it to a car.......or dig a hole ~ 3ft deep, put chain thru a cement block and bolt it, throw it in hole, and refill hole with some sand, stir with water to re-compact soil, repeat. You'll NEVER pull it out. Even just "locking" chain above ground with long bolt and 2-3 nuts tightly jammed against each other will stop ~ 99% of thieves. Slows them down, they want to be in/out fast. A car might pull it out, but just illusion of difficulty will make thieves look for an easier target. Use a fat chain with slack in it, so looks like would take longer to hold and cut. ......8 inches long 1/2 inch dia bolt with 1 new self locking nylon headed steel nut takes 3+ minutes to remove if you hustle, and it takes lot of work.


YES .... I thought my door from house to garage was tight till I painted my car in the garage...... I smelled fumes strongly on house side of that door. On my house I discovered I had to close dead bolt so it would press door tightly to magnetic weather seal, but every door is different. Besides exhaust can get into house thru seams, cracks, gaps, vents and open windows.


Good idea to buy CO detector...... house furnace heating techs recommended this one, only $22 and it's as accurate as professional detectors they carry on the job to protect their life..... a plus is press a button and it'll display current CO ppm reading, important if it's alarming at night and you need to know how bad it is (borderline or unconscious in 5 minutes) ......and it's BATTERY operated.

detector, amazon --> https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004Y6V5C...9635-e6048f79614f&ie=UTF8&qid=1527093610&sr=1
detector, walmart web -->https://www.walmart.com/search/?cat_id=0&query=KN-Copp-B-LPM+

heating tech recommendation--> https://forum.heatinghelp.com/discu...-for-home-co-detector-want-ppm-readout#latest

.
 
Last edited:

trukinbear

Registered
Bomb Cyclone - my anemometer hit 92mph before it departed for parts unknown. Lost 2 solar panels, a bunch of tarps and a few roof joists... and probably my OSB subfloor. :-(

Not surprisingly I'm the only one with power... probably in the whole county.
 

Attachments

Zephyr7

Registered
Bomb Cyclone - my anemometer hit 92mph before it departed for parts unknown. Lost 2 solar panels, a bunch of tarps and a few roof joists... and probably my OSB subfloor. :-(

Not surprisingly I'm the only one with power... probably in the whole county.
If you can dry that OSB out quickly it'll probably be ok. Get the tarp off of it, you want air movement to aid drying.

Being off grid is nice when the grid goes down :)

Everything else can be replaced, as long as you made it through ok. Always put SAFETY and PEOPLE ahead of objects.

Bill
 

Leon N.

Registered
One cannot emphasize enough the comment: Your generator MUST NOT BE IN OR NEAR YOUR HOUSE.

In cold weather, the cold air exerts an external pressure on any heated space. If the generator is close to the house, and the wind is in the right direction, there is a good chance the generator exhaust with its CO will waft toward the house and can seep in through any cold air openings or cracks.

CO detectors should be installed inside living spaces. Otherwise you will never know if it's there and it is a silent killer.
 

Bud Tierney

Registered
Consuler Reports magazine just had a nice piece on this, recommending gen be minimum of 20 feet from house...But in city lots/suburbs, 20 feet from your house is too close to neighbors, particularly if they're nice people (joke)..
What about stack on gen exhaust?? Needs too tall to be practical??
How about punching gen exhaust into existing brick chimney on outside wall??? disturb draft on gen or existing furnace?? don't run both at sane time??
Don't have and aren't getting gen, just idle curiosity.
 

Bud Tierney

Registered
Consuler Reports magazine just had a nice piece on this, recommending gen be minimum of 20 feet from house...But in city lots/suburbs, 20 feet from your house is too close to neighbors, particularly if they're nice people (joke)..
What about stack on gen exhaust?? Needs too tall to be practical??
How about punching gen exhaust into existing brick chimney on outside wall??? disturb draft on gen or existing furnace?? don't run both at sane time??
Don't have and aren't getting gen, just idle curiosity.
OH--just remembered--old house had gas fireplace type heater, had own stack run up thru existing chimney---punch into chimney from outside, run gen stack up inside chimney??
 

turtmaster

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
10/03/2019
Probably not a good idea, to run gen exhaust up chimney, factors that affect chimney draft rate, include diameter / size of chimney and also flue-gas temperature, that's why sometimes depending on the size of a chimney, if you get rid of one of the appliances that are feeding into it, like getting rid of an old class B vent gas furnace, or oil furnace, and switching to a direct vent ( through plastic PVC pipe) and keeping only the water heater venting into the chimney, sometimes requires a smaller diameter chimney liner to be installed in the chimney, to maintain the proper draft rate. Because there is not enough Heat, from just the water heater to maintain the proper draft rate.
 

Zephyr7

Registered
Another issue with existing chimneys is that exhausts from different fuels are not always compatible with all types of flue liners. Some exhaust gasses are corrosive to some types of liners.

I think code for generator clearance is 6 feet from a combustible wall. If it’s a wall of non-combustible material, you could get closer. I’d try to stick with 6 feet to give enough clearance for easy service (and NEVER closer than 3 feet!), plus less chance of exhaust gasses entering the structure.

Bill
 

Birken Vogt

Email NOT Working
Many fires here started by portables due to the widespread outages this fall. Burned up side of one house plus untold acres. Nothing real major that I know of but quite predictable.
 

Leon N.

Registered
The thought of running a generator exhaust up a brick chimney is very very dangerous, Please do not consider that approach. Simply because the external brick chimney is a source of cold air seeping into the living space unless the chimney is very warm or hot. Bad idea.
 

EICBob

Subscriber
Age
62
Last Subscription Date
07/13/2019
Take a bit of snow, add in a helping of rain, sprinkle in some sleet, freezing rain and ice crystals. Mix throughly with moderate wind....
Might get some Mother Nature Onan run time!

-BobC
 

armandh

Sponsor
Last Subscription Date
09/02/2010
electrical safety, exhaust safety, DON'T FORGET FUEL SAFETY

careless fuel handling is deadly, just like any other potential store of energy
 
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