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Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) Interrupting Power


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#51 OFFLINE   dsw2112

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 07:25 AM

My parents have a permanent home generator installed for their home (natural gas unit.) I can't recall the manufacturer currently, but shortly after install I checked the output with an o-scope and it was the equivilent of what a utility would provide.

With the exception of giving an occasional helping hand with a shipboard generator in the Navy, I can't say I have much in the way of experience with generators in general. In my experience though, there are units that do have quality sine output. It would be a shame for this not to be common among high end generators...
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#52 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 07:40 AM

And if you believe that, I have some beach front property in Mexico I'll sell you cheap.
Seriously, there are not to many products on the market these days, that doesn't have lies or stretches of truths to the marketing. Even the link I supplied above: although great product, some of their claims are a bit exaggerated.


Years ago, when we first started using PCs, I installed many Sola transformers that would keep voltage at about a steady 117VAC. Expensive, but effective. Your link seemed to be about similar devices. The Solas did work very well, but we found them unnecessary. We had our own substations and we could regulate our voltage from them. Made the Solas redundant, but didn't stop people from buying them.

Rich

#53 OFFLINE   John Williams

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 10:23 AM

My parents have a permanent home generator installed for their home (natural gas unit.) I can't recall the manufacturer currently, but shortly after install I checked the output with an o-scope and it was the equivilent of what a utility would provide.

With the exception of giving an occasional helping hand with a shipboard generator in the Navy, I can't say I have much in the way of experience with generators in general. In my experience though, there are units that do have quality sine output. It would be a shame for this not to be common among high end generators...


The dealer who sampled that generator, never said what brand it was. I too have not had a lot of expereince with them and found it disturbing the amount of people that were having major issues with generators recently.
I remember many years ago having a customer have major problems with one and the warnings back then about them (mostly about low voltages that time).

It shouldn't be that hard to get a generator to produce the proper power. But it does cost money. The raw material in parts needed to produce the clean power are a constant. So when you see a 2000 watt generator for less then $700 and they say it has perfect output, you know for a fact they are full of s#@!
It would be nice to know what generators on the market do, do it right. And at what price point. I have an oscilloscope myself (older CRT model) but can't see myself going around to every generator dealer, asking for a demo and test.

#54 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 11:19 AM

The dealer who sampled that generator, never said what brand it was. I too have not had a lot of expereince with them and found it disturbing the amount of people that were having major issues with generators recently.
I remember many years ago having a customer have major problems with one and the warnings back then about them (mostly about low voltages that time).

It shouldn't be that hard to get a generator to produce the proper power. But it does cost money. The raw material in parts needed to produce the clean power are a constant. So when you see a 2000 watt generator for less then $700 and they say it has perfect output, you know for a fact they are full of s#@!
It would be nice to know what generators on the market do, do it right. And at what price point. I have an oscilloscope myself (older CRT model) but can't see myself going around to every generator dealer, asking for a demo and test.


I was recently working on some power distribution problems involving a septic system and well that were being powered by a generator and, using my old (gotta be ~ 25 years old, it's a monster but still works like it did the day Fluke gave it to me to replace the Fluke that blew up in my hands. Another story for another time) Fluke and no matter how much I tried I could see no fluctuations in voltage, either 120 or 220. I know the Flukes are not meant for that type of application, but I thought with a generator, I would see some fluctuations. I guess the silly scopes are still the only way to do it.

Rich

#55 OFFLINE   dsw2112

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 11:57 AM

...It would be nice to know what generators on the market do, do it right. And at what price point. I have an oscilloscope myself (older CRT model) but can't see myself going around to every generator dealer, asking for a demo and test...


I go back and forth about purchasing a generator, but our power has been extremely reliable and just haven't been able to bring myself to do it currently. Of course, you know what they say, past performance is not an indication of future results :lol: Given what I've heard, I'd have to do some O-scope testing before purchasing/installing a unit.

I'm guessing there's probably a forum with folks who know/have tested home generators pretty thoroughly. Should anyone have a link (by PM would be fine) I'd certainly appreciate it.
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#56 OFFLINE   tinmanohio

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 12:36 PM

If there were such a thing as "truth in advertising" we wouldn't be having much of this conversation. Here is a page from Honda, take it for what it is worth to you. http://powerequipmen.../models/eu2000i
Scroll down and see the little picture of the sine wave. Then under "applications" it specifically mentions incandescent lights. Makes me want to ask if CFL's or LED's are a problem and if so what happened to "power just like from the utility"? I would love to take one of these someplace and have it tested.

#57 OFFLINE   Dr_J

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 02:50 PM

My parents have a permanent home generator installed for their home (natural gas unit.) I can't recall the manufacturer currently, but shortly after install I checked the output with an o-scope and it was the equivilent of what a utility would provide.


That's what I just got, a whole-home, natural gas, standby generator from Generac, not one of those portable ones that you have to pour fuel into. Here's hoping it provides clean power if necessary. After being without power for 48 hours after Hurricane Irene (which was a short length of time compared to some nearby areas), I said I would never go through that again.

#58 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 09:03 AM

If there were such a thing as "truth in advertising" we wouldn't be having much of this conversation. Here is a page from Honda, take it for what it is worth to you. http://powerequipmen.../models/eu2000i
Scroll down and see the little picture of the sine wave. Then under "applications" it specifically mentions incandescent lights. Makes me want to ask if CFL's or LED's are a problem and if so what happened to "power just like from the utility"? I would love to take one of these someplace and have it tested.


That sine wave picture illustrates a sine wave from an inverter. Enlarge it and you'll see the choppiness of the sine wave. That would give me pause to wonder how it would work with electronics.

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#59 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 09:08 AM

That's what I just got, a whole-home, natural gas, standby generator from Generac, not one of those portable ones that you have to pour fuel into. Here's hoping it provides clean power if necessary. After being without power for 48 hours after Hurricane Irene (which was a short length of time compared to some nearby areas), I said I would never go through that again.


I've often wondered if folks just pour the gas into the generators while they are running. Not a good thing to do.

Got a ballpark figure for that natural gas gennie? I've seen them for ~ $5,000 in stores around here. Be nice if the power companies either gave them to anyone who wanted one, or, at least gave you a pretty good break on the price. It is their equipment that's breaking down. A backup system should be offered.

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#60 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 09:11 AM

I go back and forth about purchasing a generator, but our power has been extremely reliable and just haven't been able to bring myself to do it currently. Of course, you know what they say, past performance is not an indication of future results :lol: Given what I've heard, I'd have to do some O-scope testing before purchasing/installing a unit.

I'm guessing there's probably a forum with folks who know/have tested home generators pretty thoroughly. Should anyone have a link (by PM would be fine) I'd certainly appreciate it.


I've had one for a couple years and never used the damn thing. Bought it from Costco, had to call the company that made it for parts that were missing from the box.

Rich

#61 OFFLINE   Dr_J

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 09:45 AM

I've often wondered if folks just pour the gas into the generators while they are running. Not a good thing to do.

Got a ballpark figure for that natural gas gennie? I've seen them for ~ $5,000 in stores around here. Be nice if the power companies either gave them to anyone who wanted one, or, at least gave you a pretty good break on the price. It is their equipment that's breaking down. A backup system should be offered.

Rich


I had to have one that powered the whole house, including both air conditioner compressors, so I got a 20 kW one. A la carte, they run close to $5,000 without installation. I don't have the wherewithall to install one, so I paid a local company to install it. They did everything, including laying down a cement block for it to rest on, pulling the permits, and having gas, plumbing, and electrical experts on board to install it. Total cost with installation was in the $9,200-$9,300 range.

#62 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 10:14 AM

I had to have one that powered the whole house, including both air conditioner compressors, so I got a 20 kW one. A la carte, they run close to $5,000 without installation. I don't have the wherewithall to install one, so I paid a local company to install it. They did everything, including laying down a cement block for it to rest on, pulling the permits, and having gas, plumbing, and electrical experts on board to install it. Total cost with installation was in the $9,200-$9,300 range.


Lot of power outages in Mass? With the money electricians are making these days, I'm almost tempted to pick up my tool bag and go back to work...nah, I'm too lazy.... :lol:

Sounds like a nice setup, wish you luck with it.

Rich

#63 OFFLINE   dsw2112

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 10:25 AM

I've had one for a couple years and never used the damn thing. Bought it from Costco, had to call the company that made it for parts that were missing from the box.

Rich


And that would be my luck as well... It's hard to spend the money on something I might use once, but I'm sure if there power were out for days (and I didn't have a generator) I'd be kicking myself :lol:
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#64 OFFLINE   Dr_J

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 11:27 AM

Lot of power outages in Mass? With the money electricians are making these days, I'm almost tempted to pick up my tool bag and go back to work...nah, I'm too lazy.... :lol:

Sounds like a nice setup, wish you luck with it.

Rich


Thanks. :)

Actually, we haven't had a lot of power outages. In the prior 8 years I've been at this house, we've only had a few, the longest one lasting 5 hours, and that was just a few houses on my street when a transformer blew. However, after last year, I said never again. About a month ago, around 3:50 a.m., power went out for no good reason. I held my breath for 10 seconds, hoping the generator would kick in, and it did! It ran for about an hour and 20 minutes before power was restored. That's when I discovered that the HR24 DVR downstairs was not connected to the UPS because it rebooted. The installers who put in the new TV obviously plugged it into the wrong outlet.

#65 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 08:41 AM

And that would be my luck as well... It's hard to spend the money on something I might use once, but I'm sure if there power were out for days (and I didn't have a generator) I'd be kicking myself :lol:


And you wouldn't be able to find a gennie to buy anywhere. Sometimes, peace of mind is worth a few bucks.

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#66 OFFLINE   Rich

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 08:45 AM

Thanks. :)

Actually, we haven't had a lot of power outages. In the prior 8 years I've been at this house, we've only had a few, the longest one lasting 5 hours, and that was just a few houses on my street when a transformer blew. However, after last year, I said never again. About a month ago, around 3:50 a.m., power went out for no good reason. I held my breath for 10 seconds, hoping the generator would kick in, and it did! It ran for about an hour and 20 minutes before power was restored. That's when I discovered that the HR24 DVR downstairs was not connected to the UPS because it rebooted. The installers who put in the new TV obviously plugged it into the wrong outlet.


Next year, new roof and solar panels installed. Sometimes I think owning a house is like having your own black hole. Just keep pouring money into it and then you die and someone makes a fortune on your home because of the upgrades. Solar panels. In my lifetime. Installed without cost. Who would have thought?

Rich

#67 OFFLINE   Dr_J

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Posted 06 August 2012 - 09:03 AM

Finally got around to trying to change the UPS battery downstairs yesterday. I Googled the APC model # and found what was supposed to be a compatible battery and got it at a local Batteries Plus for around $36 and change with a coupon. I go behind the TV to do the swap, unplug everything, turn the UPS upside down, open the battery compartment, and then discover that the "battery" is actually TWO battery packs joined together by a cable. (No way could I remember that after 5 years.) I only have one battery pack but don't really care because I only need 10 seconds of power before the generator kicks in. I decide I need more room and can't work behind the TV, so I cut the electric plug loose from the cable ties that the TV installers used. I go to lift it up and underestimate the weight; it tips over and puts a small dent in the wall. I get it out to the counter, remove the double battery, install the single battery, plug it in, and try to turn it on. Nothing. It's completely dead. No power. (Yes, I believe I connected the leads properly and reversed them and tried again just to make sure.) I don't know if it's because it fell or because it only had one battery pack that it wasn't working, but I couldn't take it anymore. I rush out to Best Buy and get a CyberPower UPS on sale for $130 plus tax that has almost the same wattage rating (805 watts, I think) as the APC UPS that I had before and that they're now selling for $210. The only big difference is that the CyberPower UPS has only 4 UPS-surge plugs (and 4 surge-only), while the APC had 6 UPS-surge and 2 surge-only, but since I only use the UPS for the HR24, DVD burner, and Xbox, that was fine. Both have similar digital displays on the front. I come home, plug everything into it, plug it in the wall, and everything is fine now, except for the small dent in the wall that's hard to see but that I know is there.

Morale of the story: don't cut corners and try to take the cheap way out. Every "simple" job I try to do ends up being a major headache. :(

#68 OFFLINE   FarmerBob

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Posted 06 August 2012 - 09:35 AM

Morale of the story: don't cut corners and try to take the cheap way out. Every "simple" job I try to do ends up being a major headache. :(

You should be far happier with the CyberPower.




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