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Old 11-02-2008, 07:20 PM  
Katonah Medic
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Default Diesel Generators

I experienced my first power outage last week, lasted 17 hours.. I always knew I would eventually need one, and tried to convince my wife to spend big bucks to get one when we first bought the house. Needless to say she never agreed, until now.

So.. I'd like to get a diesel generator that I would put on a slab outside my house, on the side of the oil fill, and run a line to my oil tank. Is this possible?

Are Diesel generators better than gas ones?

Can I use my home heating oil to run a diesel generator? I know the fuel type is the same, but know taxes are different. Do you need to use vehicle diesel for a generator?

I figured a 10KW on a transfer switch would power my whole house without any effort.

Anyone have experience with a generator for the whole house?

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Old 11-02-2008, 07:58 PM  
speedy petey
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How long have you been in your home?

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Old 11-03-2008, 12:32 AM  
triple D
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Default propane.....

There are several additives and detergents missing from heating oil. Not to mention its just dirty, and sometimes watery. I would recommend LP, Just get a small tank, maybe 100 gallons, this would last sevaral days in an outage. There is also a weather factor, if it is extremely cold, diesel may experience hard starts. Good luck with your project.....
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Old 11-03-2008, 06:53 AM  
Katonah Medic
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We closed on the house August 18, and moved in on the 20th so less than three months.

I forgot how diesel gels in cold weather. That wouldn't work here in the Northeast.
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Old 11-05-2008, 04:55 PM  
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I'd recommend just getting a small (4,000 to 5,000 watt) gasoline generator and keeping it in your garage. You can pick them up off Craigslist for $400 - $500 with just a few hours on them, as people buy them in an outage, then sell them.

You can also find transfer switches there cheaply or at an online place like GenTran.

You might want to to think of the cost per hour of use for owning / operating a generator. Diesels are pretty pricey.
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Old 12-05-2008, 05:03 PM  
Robin F
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How often do you anticipate power outages? You have to consider that diesel and natural gas generators are only intended for short periods, and also the fuel goes bad after awhile. If you're in one of those snowy places where the power goes out for a long time during blizzards, you might also consider installing a stand-by generator: Home Generator Buyer's Guide - Standby Generators & Portable Generators

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