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dr_pootis
Texas A&M Fan
Lakeview New Orleans
Member since Sep 2021
30 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
You have been living without AC this whole time?


Warfox
LSU Fan
B.R. Native (now in MA)
Member since Apr 2017
1312 posts
 Online 

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
Kohler water cooled diesels.


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Unit225
LSU Fan
Prairieville
Member since Aug 2014
1188 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
That’s what scares me. I heard a lot of bad things about Generac after the storm.


SG_Geaux
LSU Fan
St. George
Member since Aug 2004
72761 posts
 Online 

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
I can't complain about my Generac.

Ran like a champ for a week after Ida rolled through. I shut it down each afternoon and checked the oil then cranked it back up and let it roll.

I think people believe they can just let them run indefinitely and that ain't the case.

Just like everything else you have to maintain them right.
This post was edited on 1/14 at 8:21 pm


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100
c0rndogs
Member since Nov 2019
12 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
I just got a 30Kw Generac a few weeks ago. I would have preferred a Kohler or Briggs and Stratton, but I couldn't get either of those without rewiring half the house and replacing the ATS. Hoping it'll be fine if I just take care of it. My parents had a Generac for like 20 years and it was great until it just set itself on fire a month ago during a test run.


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OldCat55
LSU Fan
Member since Apr 2021
198 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
quote:

As far as I know Generac makes good products not sure why their whole house units have so many issues.


Have had a Generac 22kw for 4.5 years. It runs flawlessly. During Ida, found out the hard way that it was installed improperly. The unit was setup with the exhaust facing the house. We had varying degrees of carbon monoxide poisoning before we figured out something was very wrong. We temporarily redirected the exhaust using a trampoline leg.

Had another electrician/installer to come turn unit 180 degrees and vent away from our house. Those guys said they have tons of issues with the newer Generacs. They said the issue was with the controller and to do warranty work on them, they had to fill out a crazy huge form.


NewIberiaHaircut
LSU Fan
Lafayette
Member since May 2013
10692 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
quote:

Yeah the soft start is a game changer. Fully recommend. Zero issues starting and running with an 8kW unit.


What’s the tonnage of your AC?


Ponchy Tiger
Army Fan
Ponchatoula
Member since Aug 2004
38076 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
quote:

You have been living without AC this whole time?


It sat under water for 2.5 days and them another 2 plus weeks without power so it had plenty of time to dry out. Talked to my AC guy and he told to fire it up see if it runs. It hasn't missed a beat. But It's getting replaced it is 25 years old.


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Unit225
LSU Fan
Prairieville
Member since Aug 2014
1188 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
If you had to buy today what brand are getting? We are building a house at the moment I’m trying to avoid mistakes. Also any other install recommendations?


TigeretteHUB
LSU Fan
Member since Jan 2022
33 posts
 Online 

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
quote:

that's right. As far as I know Generac makes good products not sure why their whole house units have so many issues.


I’ve had my Generac for 6 years. It has been flawless. 22kw whole house.

It ran my whole house for 2 weeks post Ida. Not one issue.


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redstick13
US Space Force Fan
DMZ
Member since Feb 2007
32957 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
Is your local power grid unreliable? Generator companies are making bank off of folks who can't live a few days every 5 years without central AC.


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21
dr_pootis
Texas A&M Fan
Lakeview New Orleans
Member since Sep 2021
30 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
quote:

What’s the tonnage of your AC?



2 ton compressor. Smaller house, definitely a factor. The machine itself is only on a 30 amp breaker.

quote:

It sat under water for 2.5 days and them another 2 plus weeks without power so it had plenty of time to dry out. Talked to my AC guy and he told to fire it up see if it runs. It hasn't missed a beat. But It's getting replaced it is 25 years old.



Testament to how they used to make things. That's awesome, glad it's still working for you.
This post was edited on 1/14 at 9:11 pm


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bapple
LSU Fan
Capital City
Member since Oct 2010
11471 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
I had a 20kW Honeywell unit installed a few months ago (unfortunately it was not delivered in time for Ida and I was without power for a week). It mostly has Generac guts but has run fine anytime it's been needed. Plus having backup parts is very easy with it being a common Generac unit. I have a couple spark plugs and oil filters ready to go if needed.

The biggest advantage of a whole home generator is the unlimited fuel source (assuming natty gas over propane). Yes, you're paying for it but your house is basically hooked right up to a gas pump rather than having to constantly refill a tank at the gas station and keeping a bunch of gasoline on-hand. Backfeeding your home panel with a large enough gas generator will work fine but you better have enough backup gas or use the fuel sparingly. With the whole home running on natty gas you just need to pay the bill and that's it. Friends who ran theirs during Ida said it's about $35-$40 per day, so it being worth that cost is up to the buyer to decide.

I also really like the auto-transfer switch in that you don't have to go out and manually switch your power source from the utility to the generator. Takes about 5-10 seconds for the unit to start and switch power over and then you're good until the grid comes back up. You'll see a very brief flicker when power transfers back to the utility and no intervention is required. And if for some reason it fails, there is a mechanical override where the person can manually switch it over.

Air-cooled home generators get a bad rep because people think you can just leave them running for weeks on-end with no maintenance. According to the electrician I purchased the generator from, most failures he has seen have been old people not checking the oil level. Any engine running on no oil will eventually fail. And while the liquid-cooled units do a better job keeping the engine chilled they also have a much bigger footprint and require more maintenance. Up to the buyer if they want that trade-off.

quote:

The unit was setup with the exhaust facing the house. We had varying degrees of carbon monoxide poisoning before we figured out something was very wrong. We temporarily redirected the exhaust using a trampoline leg.


The two nearest soffit vents to the generator have been air-sealed for this very reason on mine. I mentioned it to the installer and even though there's likely enough clearance from my house I'd rather not take chances. Mine is also installed parallel to the house rather than perpendicular so that may help keep the exhaust away.

quote:

Basically it takes a big surge to start a central air compressor but not very much to keep it running. The soft start to my understanding delays the start and builds up enough charge to start the unit.


Both a hard start kit and a soft starter will reduce the intensity of the "inrush" current (the current required to start your compressor). The hard starter reduces the amount of time needed to get the compressor up to full speed and the soft starter slowly ramps up the power over a longer period of time (think of slowly turning up a dimmer switch). Both will help extend the life of your compressor while also reducing the starting load on your generator, albeit the soft starter does a slightly better job.

I have Micro Air soft starters on both my 3 ton units and love them. They also have bluetooth modules in them so I can get real-time run data and can track any faults in the system as well. Very neat little units if you're willing to drop $350. The generator barely feels it when they kick on.
This post was edited on 1/14 at 10:39 pm


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QuietTiger
LSU Fan
New Orleans
Member since Dec 2003
25754 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
A lot of people are choosing anyone other than Generac because of recent issues and parts availability problems. I recommend Kohler.
This post was edited on 1/15 at 12:06 am


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TSmith
LSU Fan
New Orleans, La.
Member since Jan 2004
1323 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
quote:

and you can still run almost everything except the central ac - just not all at the same time.

Not true, with modifications to your central AC condenser. Install a soft starter. No, not a hard start kit, but a soft start. Emerson makes one. The one I have is made by Hyper Engineering. Lowers the starting amps by around 80%. Allows most 7KW and above portable generators to run central air without a problem.


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Kreg Jennings
LSU Fan
Parts Unknown
Member since Aug 2007
2461 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
I have a whole house Generac. No issues whatsoever.

Ran my whole house without skipping a beat for several days after the ice storm and Ida.


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billjamin
LSU Fan
Houston
Member since Jun 2019
3781 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
It’s Cummins and there isn’t any reason to think any further.


lsu13lsu
Member since Jan 2008
9795 posts
 Online 

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
quote:

But a buddy of mine is a electrician and installs them sometimes. He says do not get a Generac. He claims they have more problems than any other brand.


They are sold 10-1 any other brand so yeah you are going to have more problems than any other brand.

No dog in the fight. Just in my own research I found the reason you hear more negative
Is because there are vastly more of them.

Having more of them has its advantages as well. Parts. Service etc.
This post was edited on 1/14 at 11:50 pm


DrSteveBrule
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Sep 2009
11544 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
quote:

This was my set up during after Ida and it worked flawlessly with the exception of an impatient and sometimes ungrateful wife


What is it with Women and generator issues?

They act like the world is going to end because I have to take the generator offline to change the oil or add gas.

Glad I'm not the only one I guess


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70
billjamin
LSU Fan
Houston
Member since Jun 2019
3781 posts

re: Best Home Standby Generator?
quote:

They are sold 10-1 any other brand so yeah you are going to have more problems than any other brand.

It’s not 10-1. But generac makes actual garbage.


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