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Old 09-01-2005, 03:14 PM   #1
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generator for earthquake prep

Hello,

I'm right in the middle of earthquake country. 20 minutes from San Francisco. Watching all those folks in NOLA without water/food/shelter/medicine etc. is making me finally getting off my duff to get an earthquake preparedness kit and plan together with my family.

Any shopping advice on a small generator?

finkplamingoes
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Old 09-01-2005, 04:43 PM   #2
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I guess it depends on what you are trying to preserve power to. Your home or your Tradewind? We are in earthquake country also and my biggest fear is the loss of power during the winter.

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Old 09-01-2005, 05:02 PM   #3
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Looking at pics of people clamoring for gas and limited to 5 gallons in New Orleans I'd consider not only the gen. but the ability to get fuel for it. I bought this one because it's quiet and runs on propane, LP, or gas. That gives you more options. ALso, storing propane tanks or even using the ones on your trailer is safer than storing gas. I used it a couple of weeks ago for boondocking and was very pleased. I almost went with the two smaller hondas for weight advantages but being able to run on propane convinced me. I was able to carry this one in my Suburban and since there was no gas in it I didn't have to worry about fumes in the car.

http://www.yamaha-propane-natural-ga...m/ef30iseb.htm
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Old 09-01-2005, 05:03 PM   #4
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fink,

If you want it strictly for emergency backup, then a cage type generator and appropriate switchover device would be a good idea.
A 5000W model will get you enough juice to run refrigeration and perhaps a furnace, with a little power to spare for a few lights in the house.
The switchover is important to protect power line workers from getting zapped by your generator, once it is installed to your fuse box. It disconnects the city power, and let's the generator feed the fuses.
I have seen generators like that for less than $ 600.00
My eu2000 can run all my office equipment, plus lights in 1 office without speeding up much...and it's quiet. But it's not powerful enough to run furnace and refrigeration etc for household use.
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Old 09-01-2005, 05:30 PM   #5
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Genny suggestions

A 2800 to 3000 watt genset with a 20/30amp locking plug outlet will be sufficient for most people and will run most anything in your house (but not all at once). Don't cheap out and buy a Coleman, Homelite or the like from Home Depot. Buy a Honda, Kawasaki or Yamaha and nothing else. Look into getting an electrician to wire a generator pony panel off of your main breaker panel, or devise a plan on how you will be getting power where you need it (fridge/freezer, sump pump, furnace etc.) Keep a minimum of 10 gals of fuel on hand, and stabilize it as soon as you buy it. Date it and rotate it every 4-6 months depending on the temp. stabilty of your storage. If the power goes out, and it looks like it'll be a while before it's restored, run the generator sparingly and only as required. You should be able to get away with about 6 hrs run time a day in the winter (less in the summer or warm climate areas). That would give you about 6 - 7 days of running from your 10 gallon reserve and a full tank in the genny itself. You should keep the genny full BTW, stabilize the fuel in it too and make sure that you run it monthly, even if it's only for 1/2 an hour. Think of ways to use it, run your skil saw or shop vac rather than getting an extention cord, just don't let it sit - if you do, it probably won't run when you need it most. Just my 2 cents. P.
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Old 09-01-2005, 07:00 PM   #6
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emergency generators

one more vote for the propane powered variety. I can store a lot of propane and not have to "stabil" it or rotate it. One more little item to consider, a good water filter. I'm partial to the MSR ones as you can clean them easily and they will take the nastiest water and make if drinkable. if I'm not mistaken they will filter down to the viral level. Hope it never happens, but the first rule of the woods is 'better to have and not need than need and not have".
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Old 09-01-2005, 08:16 PM   #7
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Ingrid
After the quake of 89 we set up a 8kw generator with a transfer switch and a 500 gallon porpane tank. But the most important thing we found that was needed is WATER !!!! Now we also have a 1650 gallon emergency supply of water. We lost our house from the quake and there was NO HELP at all, we were on our own. We know how our fellow country men and women feel in the south after Katrina. Be ready with food and water.
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Old 09-01-2005, 08:39 PM   #8
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Post I second the motion!!!

Tinsel's got it right. Generators are great, but what you will really need after any emergency is food and water, especially water.

FEMA and the Red Cross have been telling people for years to have a supply of food and water and a "grab and run" kit, because the government will not be in place to assist for at least 72 hours. We need to start relying on our own sensibilities and strengths and not expect to have the government bale us out.

By the way, we didn't have power for 3 hours today. Some substation went down. I wasn't concerned. I turned on the battery powered radio/tv, got a bottle of water, sat and balanced the checkbook and then picked grapes.

Grandma always said " the Lord helps those who help themselves"
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Old 09-01-2005, 08:44 PM   #9
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Living Off Grid / Prayers for those in need

We have a Lincoln welder. It can run our well, all appliances and even an electric water heater. There is a switch box at the electric pole where we plug in to our supply line. It burns 0.8 gal per hour peak. Where we live the power goes off sometimes for days.

We are becoming more efficient and need less power for back-up but everything is paid for and I can even weld if necessary.

My wife made fun of me for buying it before Y2K. She is happy we have had it for some rough times we have had. Praying works.
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Old 09-02-2005, 02:40 AM   #10
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Thanks, all. The water, food and emergency medical supplies are all top priority over the generator, definitely. I'm not so sure we're even getting a generator. Where I live, winter can be comparitavely easy to survive without electricity or heat. It's not warm at night, but a good sleeping bag takes care of it. I was thinking in terms of being on our own for longer than the required three days of supplies. After the '06 quake, the biggest threat besides panic was fires, they say. If we can stay home but be without help, then we'd be fine with supplies, but if there are fires and everyone has to evacuate, plan B is grab and run. I haven't gotten to that scenario yet in my planning. I'm doing what most residents here haven't done, which is GET STARTED.

That propane and water filter advice looks good though.
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Old 09-02-2005, 02:41 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tinsel Loaf
Ingrid
After the quake of 89 we set up a 8kw generator with a transfer switch and a 500 gallon porpane tank. But the most important thing we found that was needed is WATER !!!! Now we also have a 1650 gallon emergency supply of water. We lost our house from the quake and there was NO HELP at all, we were on our own. We know how our fellow country men and women feel in the south after Katrina. Be ready with food and water.
What kind of a container do you store all that water in?
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Old 09-06-2005, 10:04 PM   #12
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Unhappy Water, water everywhere....

Ingrid -

We have our water stored in 55 gal drums in various locations throughout our house and outbuildings. We have not stored as much as some do, because we have access to ponds (spring fed) and a creek. We also keep a large supply of commercially bottled drinking water. Two good sources of information is www.providentliving.org and www.beprepared.com of course along with the Red Cross and FEMA websites.

I'm glad you are preparing.
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Old 03-01-2006, 02:23 PM   #13
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We just now had a little shake here. Anyone feel it?

You can buy 55 gallon water storage drums for fairly cheap shipping at www.quakekare.com the total price after the siphon pump and all that jazz was about $108.00 for me but I don't know how far they would have to ship to wherever you are. You could save shipping by picking it up in person or there may be other options but to get the dang thing into my posssession I finally just ordered it.
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Old 03-01-2006, 02:28 PM   #14
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Ingrid, we didn't feel anything this far south. But here's a nice link:
http://quake.wr.usgs.gov/recenteqs/Maps/122-37.html
Jeff
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