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bidkev

Power cuts.........Invertor/generator question for sparkies

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Thought this thread may be of help to those worrying about power cuts..............it's one of those 'how long is a piece of string questions" as I have no idea re battery outputs etc

So............ I can't make my mind up re an invertor or generator. Well I can, I don't really fancy a generator.......My downside with the generator is the noise and fumes and size. (no room to store). My upside with the invertor is that I already have two spare/sound 12 volt batteries from when I sold the boat.

I was looking at a 1000 watt sine invertor for only $75. Accepting that I would have to run extension leads/boards from this to reach all my fish room pumps/canisters and allowing for the lights being off and heaters off due to summer temps, I would be running 6 canisters totalling 220watts and 90 watts of air pumps...........call it 400 watts to be safe. How long would a good/sound car battery last before flattening in the case of a power failure?

Any pointers those in the know may have re emergency power supply would be good for all members as inquisitive (aka thick) as me

cheers

kev

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I think the battery would be dead in a couple of hours, maybe sooner. You're looking around 40Ah of draw from the DC battery, and most car batteries are only about 40Ah, so 1 hr would be it.

Still, could get you out of trouble in a short term such as those in Brissie.

How long will it take for the aerobic bacteria to die in a canister filter once the power goes down?

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[quote=Zuthdahr;351117

How long will it take for the aerobic bacteria to die in a canister filter once the power goes down?

I've had power down for 3 hrs with no spikes in water parameters and had sponges with airline adrift for 12 hrs with no spikes.

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a second hand honda will be twice the price as that ebay special, but you get what you pay for...

look at it this way,

the ebay geny will be a gamble, at best.

-It will run, but when it has a problem, parts are non-existent, throw away job

-a honda will be an investment, if there were a problem, parts a plenty.

when your done with the honda, it will more than likely still be worth close to what you paid for it

keep an eye on gumtree, they do come up, but you have to be quick.

Edited by ash
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a second hand honda will be twice the price as that ebay special, but you get what you pay for...

look at it this way,

the ebay geny will be a gamble, at best.

-It will run, but when it has a problem, parts are non-existent, throw away job

-a honda will be an investment, if there were a problem, parts a plenty.

when your done with the honda, it will more than likely still be worth close to what you paid for it

keep an eye on gumtree, they do come up, but you have to be quick.

Agreed but the top range only excel when it comes to parts and running hours. As you say, throw away job............just like those cheapo battery packs from supercheap that have kept me in camp lighting for the last 6 yrs for $95.......... but if it's only going to be used for about 20 hrs per year, (based on the power cuts in my area) why pay 2k when you can get something to do the job for $400?

It's only going to be pulling 400 watts....600 k max if I want a few lights when there's a power cut.

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i have 2 honda gens , one 750 watts and one 3 kva . the 750 is about 10 years old and goes like the clappers and most the time starts 1st pull . the 3 kva is so quiet you cant even hear it over the sponge filters

to me honda gens are the top of the heap but they are not cheap

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I use 2 belkin UPS for my air pumps (30 - 60 mins) in case I am not home when the power goes out, but I also have a $99 700w wat Genset (From Masters) for the pumps and 1 heater for 4 - 6 houes on a tank. I also run a 200 ltr drum fed from a float switch to replenish any water lost if the sump overtops when all the tanks run down,

I will invest in a 2.4 kw genset later ($500) when the fish pay some more money for winter to run all the heaters

unless you have an auto start genset when the power goes out and a change over contactor you must be home to start it

BIG NOTE (and I am a sparky) never make a lead with 2 male plugs to power your system, always use a change over contactor (again a sparky is required) or unplug the lead from the powerpoint and plug your system direct to the GENSET outlet, any other method will have any number of issues, worst of all accidental death to you or a loved one and or fire explosion when the power is restored. ALL GENSETS unless earthed have what is called a float voltage, this can be anything from 1volt to 1000s of volts above the earth potential, treat them with respect around water

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Cant really help you much other than to give you examples of what our cctv vans run off. We are currently running honda inverter gennys and they are the ducks nuts imo, super quiet, efficient and reliable. However we are changing over to 3000w pure sinewave inverters in the new vans im building. We were quoted $3000 for everything and to hook it up to vehicle, included was 4 125AH batteries, isolators etc. That has the potential to run what you have for a total of 15hrs max (runs our van for 7hrs).

Imo either option is great and it will really come down to the bottom $ compared to frequency used. Honda gennys arent cheap and decent batteries also arent cheap, but you will only get what you pay for. Weve had cheap gennys crap out in no time but the honda goes forever which is what we need. Another company i worked for skimped out on the batteries for their inverter system and after 3 months they wouldnt hold charge for very long, also no good for what we need. That said tho we are running the all day every day so prob not a good example but thought ide share anyway

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Kev get the led lights. You know the little desk ones, got about 40 low watt leds in and about 3 watt total. When used during a blackout its bright as and will light a whole room! Brand I got was KLAR and was only about $20 from the lfs. I put it on the MS6115 power meter to check the watts used, and its so low it wouldnt register lol.

The little 1ft fluro fish lights aren't bad either but probably draw more power than the leds.

My fishroom only operates the 100watt airpump to every tank during an outage. We used the 1000w inverter and an amp-teck 120 amp deep cycle battery last sunday when power was out for 3 hours. Went like a dream and when we put the battery on slow recharge, the moniter said it still had several hours worth of charge left so 5 hours running a 100w pump should be easy.

In an absolute disaster we do have a genny as backup but I doubt we'll use it much.

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one thing to remember is generators (anything not 3 phase) have a very noisy power output. This means your equipments life is less + get hotter because of the noise created by the generator. Myself personally would not hook up my expensive fish equipment to a gen to decrease the life. I think buying a good quality UPS is the way to go. You can get some pretty big ones that would be far more beneficial for your system. They arent too pricey either. Just work out your total power consumption of all your equipment. you dont have to be exact but close to so you can size it accordingly.

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one thing to remember is generators (anything not 3 phase) have a very noisy power output. This means your equipments life is less + get hotter because of the noise created by the generator. Myself personally would not hook up my expensive fish equipment to a gen to decrease the life. I think buying a good quality UPS is the way to go. You can get some pretty big ones that would be far more beneficial for your system. They arent too pricey either. Just work out your total power consumption of all your equipment. you dont have to be exact but close to so you can size it accordingly.

I thought UPS systems only give you backup for minutes, as opposed to hours?

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i have been doing a bit of reading and it seems the most you will get out of one without spending a fortune would be a few hours. You can buy extra batteries to put with it as well to extend the time. I dunno its a tough one. If i was going to do something like that i would probably go with a UPS for say three hours so size it accordingly and then have a gen there just incase. Because really power wont be out for longer than 3 hrs surely and if it is i guess some peoples stock would be worth more than their equipment so the risk would be worth it.

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The last power cut I had lasted for just over two hours. I had a spare fully charged battery in the garage and an el cheapo 300watt Aldi invertor (49 bucks). I hooked it up to the tanks in the lounge which consisted of 2 FX5's and a rena 405 with tank lights turned off. They were still pumping when the power came back on. Seems like a cheap alternative????...............I've got 400 watts of filters/air pumps in the fish room split between two power sockets so it seems if I put a similar set up on each of those leads, I'd get at least a couple of hours with no heaters/lights.

Seeing as the heaters don't come on in summer and I've never had a power cut in winter, two more low watt inverters and another two batteries/power pack (which I already have) should see me through????????? If I feel a longer power cut may be in process, I only need turn 'em on intermittently...................still playing around with ideas and the downside of this idea is buggering about by torchlight setting 'em up. The automatic multi battery invertor/charger system is much better, kicking in as it does when the power fails, but also much more expensive................Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm??????

Edited by bidkev
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