Home Generator System

Originally Posted By: mschoolfield
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I am inspecting a home Monday that has a back up electrical generating system. Any advice on what to inspect and how to report OR is it best to disclaim and refer to a generator specialist. icon_question.gif icon_question.gif

Originally Posted By: jfarsetta
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Most important things are proper ground source for the generator, and either a manual or automatic transfer switch, wired to spec.

Referr to electrical contractor for evaluation if you are not sure. You'd also have to ensure that the unit starts, cycles up, and sustains a moderate load wthout stalling. I'd note its fuel source, and start it up. Refer all else away if you are unsure of what to inspect...

Joe Farsetta

Originally Posted By: jhagarty
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Joseph Hagarty

HouseMaster / Main Line, PA

Phone: 610-399-9864
Fax : 610-399-9865

HouseMaster. Home inspections. Done right.

Originally Posted By: Dennis Bozek
This post was automatically imported from our archived forum.

Well Mike, inside of the transfer switch or the generator, there should be a override switch, which allows the generator to be started manually and allows for maintenance of the generator by Mr. Home Owner, without the generator starting up on it’s own. Also, unless Mr. Home Owner is wealthy, it is not common to see a automatic transfer switch for such devices and the generators that go with them are quite expensive. Normally one would see a 30KW Home Depot portable generator, a cord with a 220 plug on it, and a manual transfer switch in the basement next to the panel. I have even seen systems with no transfer switch, whereas the manual turn off of the main breaker was performed by the home owner and then the generator would be plugged into the house through a 220 receptacle that allowed the main panel to be backfed through a breaker in the panel. Just a note of caution Mike…the latter example here is very dangerous if not done properly and should be noted as such.

This information has been edited and reviewed for errors by your favorite resident sparky.