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Old 24th November 2014, 02:16 AM   #1
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Exclamation cheated by the power company.

I'm looking for help from an fellow audiopheliac concerning an off topic Electrical question . My house is dark because my generator isnt working because my electric company screwed me. After being on a level pay plan for 5 years I got a letter telling me that they had screwed up everything on their end.and I owe them $6000. Would someone please help me diagnose why my Chinese Honda imitation generator is putting out 11 volts on one circuit and 38 on the other. Just think of it like stopping to help someone took a flat tire..::
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Old 24th November 2014, 03:08 AM   #2
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*stops, gets out of truck*

*wanders over to chip23's generator, chewing a piece of grass*

diagnose why my Chinese Honda imitation generator
"Ayup... there's yer problem..."

(Seriously, though, you're probably going to have to provide more information... Is this loaded or unloaded? Was it working before? What's the generator rated for?)
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Old 24th November 2014, 03:22 AM   #3
rayma is online now rayma  United States
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Originally Posted by chip23 View Post
my Chinese Honda imitation generator is putting out 11 volts on one circuit and 38 on the other. Just think of it like stopping to help someone took a flat tire..::
Does the generator have two outputs, or are you measuring the voltage two places in your house?

There may be a law that they cannot disconnect you during certain times of the year, this is so in my state.
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Old 24th November 2014, 04:01 AM   #4
BigE is offline BigE  Canada
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How can they punish you for their error? I'd lawyer up and go on the attack.
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Old 24th November 2014, 04:32 AM   #5
CBS240 is offline CBS240  United States
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Old 24th November 2014, 04:48 AM   #6
Pano is offline Pano  United States
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I was on a level pay plan for 5 years, too. If they told me I owed $6000 because of their mistake, I'd be taking them to court. At least get an injunction. You are in the US, right?

Provide more info on your generator, as mentioned above. I had a 12KW whole house generator that put out a good 117V per leg, no problems.
Big Altec Moving Sale!
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Old 24th November 2014, 08:05 AM   #7
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Old 24th November 2014, 12:34 PM   #8
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You need to provide more info both on the generator and your circumstance. I cannot believe if things occurred as you describe that the utility would not agree to an extended payback plan period without interest. I would also trust that you have at least verified by reading your own meter that their numbers were correct. While it was their mistake you surely don't think you deserve to get $6K of electricity for free as a consequence. But if you refused to negotiate a payment plan or accept that the debt was yours that is a different matter.

On the generator I assume from your description this is a 2kW to 4kW unit and probably advertised at a much higher level than it can sustain. You do understand that when you connect it you should open all of the circuit breakers except the one you are feeding through. Then you will need to load manage the generator by only connecting individual loads that it can carry. If you are powering the fridge given its motor start current that may be all you can carry so everything else stays off until it is back down to temp. Oh and forget about loads like A/C, electric dryers, ranges, etc. If you want to power your house like you are connected to the grid you need at least 10kW, much more if A/C is involved.
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Old 24th November 2014, 02:27 PM   #9
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Depending on your country of residence, contact the Public Service Commission. They dictate that the utility (who owns and controls the meter) must keep an accurate meter. Errors in the implementation are not your responsibility.

Mention "PSC" to your utility CSR and they will likely change their tune.
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Old 24th November 2014, 02:58 PM   #10
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Chinese Honda imitation generator
A Kipor generator maybe?

If so these and the Honda's that they copied are "Inverter Generators."

A conventional generator must spin at a constant RPM in order to provide the correct output frequency. So for a light load the generator is spinning away at 3600 RPM wasting fuel.

Honda pioneered the Inverter Generator. The gas engine spins a DC generator which drives a solid state inverter that converts the DC into low distortion sine wave AC power. The gas engine is governed to spin at the speed needed to supply the connected load, thereby improving efficiency at light loads and allowing the generator to run quieter.

It is possible that the protection circuitry inside the generator is reducing the power output to protect the inverter. This usually happens when there is a motor or incandescent load attached that requires a high starting current.

Disconnect all loads, start the generator and see if you get proper voltage. If so apply a light load and test again, if good then connect back the loads one at a time to see what upsets the generator. It is usually an appliance with a motor......or a wife with a coffeemaker AND a 1800 watt blow dryer.

If the generator fails to produce proper voltage with no, or light load, then there is an internal problem. Does the engine run at near idle with no load? Does the speed increase with load?
Too much power is almost enough! Turn it up till it explodes - then back up just a little.
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