WARNING: It is DEADLY if you connect a generator to your home or building to Test your generator or during a blackout !
Failure to disconnect or isolate a generator from the grid, means voltage will be fed back into the grid, and could KILL anyone several kilometres away working on or repairing the lines !
If you do NOT have an Automatic Mains Failure (AMF) switch fitted, you MUST first turn the Main fuse(s) OFF, even if only testing your generator, removing the main fuses should be done when switched OFF, only now it is relatively safe to test your equipment ! Then at least people working on the Grid should not be in DANGER from your tests !
Be smart and safe, install an AMF and AMF switch gear, a AMF switch is designed to automatically start the generator in the event of mains power failure, and automatically shut down the generator when the mains power is restored.
Auto Cut-off switch automatically disconnect the home or business from the power grid when the generator is being used. An Auto cut-off switch should be installed by a licensed electrician. A bottom of the line, domestic, single phase ATS mains board mounted switch/system costs upwards of $150, a small price to pay for a first level of safety!
Safety wise an advanced Automatic Transfer Switch (ATS), provides automatic switching of your premises from utility grid to generator supply and back again. This can also be programmed for testing or to change under different operating parameters. Please check with your local utility company and building office before installing a hard wired generator.
Utility transformers can increase a Generators 240volts of electrical to thousands of volts, which is more than enough to kill a utility line person making outage repairs kilometres away. You could also cause extensive damage to utility equipment, home appliances and your generator.
Features of a good synchronised AMF panels are:
- Load Manager, Power reverse protection Earth fault, auto manual synchronisation, volt meter, frequency meter, all should comes in a single panel.
- Automatic start and stop of the generator and changeover the EB/generator lines.
- Auto/manual selector is available.
- Auto delay in start of genset.
- Genset stop with delay of 3 minutes.
- Alarm for fail to start.
- 4ST switch control for healthy start and stop of genset.
- Manual start & stop switch.
- Available with emergency stop switch.
- Auto Low Lube Oil Pressure (LLOP), High Water Temperature (HWT) & Low Fuel (LF) Sensors-Relay protections.
- Control wires and safety sensors according to their generators’ standard.
- Checklist to find the fault and to correct.
:: THE PERFECT FREE POWER SYSTEM ::
Lets assume you have an approved AMF and ATS switches and hybrid inverter fitted to your Power plant/system, and your systems includes Solar panels, Battery pack and a Diesel Generator, then you will have one of the best system to eliminate your power bill and go Off-Grid totally if desired !
- Solar panels, once fitted into a system, other than a clean, they are virtually free of maintenance, produces free power, excess power produced gets approx. $0.10kWh feedback-rebate from your Power company for unused power produced during Daytime, is better then nothing! However, it's a lot smarter to put access Solar power into Battery's for evening usage, instead of paying some $0.25kWh.
- Battery bank, a long-standing traditional reservoir for storing any excess power that systems produces. In modern times this can be done by Solar or Generator operation. Batteries are silent & relatively safe if ventilation is required, battery systems are ideal for off-grid setup or load shifting power, like when charging from
Solar panels &/or during any generator operation.
- Generators, with Solar & a Generator in your system, you should only have to operate a generator after sunset & only after your Battery bank rail voltage is to low. The not so SECRET thing is, when you have a Diesel generator#, you can run it on WVO for virtually FREE, well other that a 2 micron filter & $500~$1'000 worth of filtering equipment !
If you are on the power grid with a solar, battery & Diesel generator, you have the best choice to eliminate your electricity bill and possibly make money !
Example: Customers pay around $0.25 cents kWh for Electricity 24/7 (excluding off-peak hot water) and ONLY get a re-bate of approx. $0.06 cents kWh for Excess power feed-back Tariff.
So, Charging any battery pack off any solar system, produces free power to be used after sunset, when normally you will be charged $0.25kWh.
:: THE PERFECT FREE FUEL ::
The pros and cons of using waste oils in a diesel genset engine !
If you have a supply's of Vegetable oil (VO) or FREE waste vegetable oil (WVO) or used automatic transmission fluid or engine oils, you may be interested that many people are now treating and using VO and WVO to run Diesel engines, some call it "Bio-Diesel" and use it as a substitute fuel in vehicles and co-generation systems to eliminate their power bills.
The important thing is you research the best way to treat your available or chosen waste oil !
REMEMBER: Diesel engines were initially designed and operated on vegetable oil before diesel became abundant.
The facts are proven;
- Vegetable oil also provides better lubrication than diesel fuel that have added additives.
- WVO also reduces Green house gases by up to 75% and NOx reduction of approx. 16%, and other pollutants that are inherently introduced into petrochemical Diesel.
If you are on a farm and have an old Diesel engine out in the old power shed (like a lot of old farms), these engines can be revitalised to run on virtually free used vegetable oil you collect from the rear of Hotel kitchens, Restaurants, Cafes, roadside service stations, council dump sites etc, all you need to do is filter WVO, using waste engine oils is a lot more complicated, Google it.
Five important things to implement when using WVO;
- Make or purchase a battery or 240v fine filtration and pump system, to initially collect your oils.
Use an engine that's in good condition, if you buy a lemon it will still be a lemon after you convert it.
Engine operating temperature plays a stronger role in proper fuel combustion than fuel temperature;
- When collecting your WVO, if you find one source and the oil is a milky colour, leave it alone and go to the next place, as it will block your filter very quickly, as a milky hue is an indication of either water or other other less desirable fat or lard type oil have being mixed.
- Using a large size 2 micron concertina (zig zag) type marine Filters, treated with Water-Block chemicals are the best, as they remove all water whilst filtering the oils directly into use or into whatever collection & settling containers you have. NB: These large filters clean from 1'000~1'500 litres, so @$30 each it will cost you from $0.02~$0.05 cents per litre to filtered WVO, 10~40 micron filter costs the same, so why bother ! Remember, the finer the first filter the less chance of any contaminants entering your engine fuel system, the water blocker enhances the purity of your collection, be it going directly into use or into storage or settling tank(s).
WVO engine kits are ideally suited for those who do a lot of driving. In very cold weather vehicle may need to start and stop on diesel, remember thick WVO means the engine should be warmed up so the vegetable oil is heated so it will be as thin as possible, therefore if you drive short distances and shut off the engine before it has time to warm up, or if you drive infrequently, WVO may not be for you. However, an on vehicle filter system using two temperature controlled Glow plugs, will give you a quicker fuel heating option.
Do not underestimate the importance of proper and complete pre-filtering. The more energy and effort you put into pre-filtering your oil, the more successful you will be running on veg oil, remember newer vehicles require higher quality fuel than most older vehicles.
- Engine minimum temperature guide line is from 66°C (150F).
- Fuel minimum temperature guide line is from 50°C (120F).
- Depending on the ambient temperature, your WVO should be a honey colour or light brown as possible, not milky or thick as this indicates lard or water mixed, if so go to the next restaurant, better WVO will save your filters, time and all sorts of long term problems.
There are various opinions on the best type of injector and combustion chamber configurations that are supposedly more suited to the long term use of WVO etc., again do your research!
It is highly recommended you research your engine design to see what is needs to be done to reduce the chance of causing long term damage to your engine.
Latest research on a single piston diesel engines indicates they can be converted into a 6 cycle (stroke), using fuel then water (steam) for the second power stroke, this system reduces fuel usage by 50% as it uses 50% water, and has the added benefit of reducing engine heat by approx. 40% and as mentioned, greatly reduces Greenhouse gasses, NOx and other pollutants that are inherent in petrochemical Diesel.
For those interested, Revetec is currently looking for a joint partner to manufacture build a single or twin cylinder, six stroke Diesel CCE engine in Australia.
:: Waste Vegetable Oil ::
For those interested in the latest development in WVO, this article is a good read and starting point (.pdf file)
A few random site Links worth reading;
Let us know if you have a better forum on the subject and we will put a link in.
Any business can eliminate a $1,000 monthly electricity bill by simply purchased a cheap $1'250, 6kWh, air cooled, cage type Diesel generator# (very noisy though) and a $250.00 Automatic Transfer Switch (ATS), all can be purchased from eBay.
Excluding the electricity supply charges, a 6kWh Diesel Generator operating for 8 hours day, 5 days a week for 4 weeks (160hrs) on 100% WVO, could pay for itself in just a few months!
You would be ill advised if you did not locate an generator far enough away as to be silent.
If the engine is new, it is advised to first run-in the engine on 100% Diesel for the first 10 hours, then use a 50/50 blend to test for a few days to evaluate how your particular engine operated on WVO, after showing no smoke when warmed up, reduce the diesel content to get as close as possible to 100% WVO, if smoke appears during operation use enough diesel until this stops. Due to less power required out of hours operation, it is reported that most systems are currently only been used during peak power periods, for power hungry Air conditioners along with appliances and fridges etc. during the peak periods. These tests clearly showed the potential of eliminating the power consumption outlaid to Utility companies!
The above test used an air cooled engine in a cage type generator that are noisier, many only run during work day peak periods form 6~8 hours, five (5) days a week. Obviously it takes a lot longer to pay for itself if not operating on 100% WVO.
Plans are now being made to purchase and test silenced unit that costs $5,000, water cooled, 10kW long run commercial GenSet totally enclosed in a silenced container type unit with battery storage that are charged up during the day and use at night, this will take this project to the final stage ...almost FREE power generation!
This is currently the latest smart battery systems leading the pack and is considered the future of Green power storage, there is the argument of the availability of rare earth minerals etc. that are required to manufacture most of these types of battery's.