I'm now a high tech redneck, woohoo !

Discussion in 'General Industry Discussions' started by topsites, Sep 1, 2006.

  1. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    Why wouldn't you know it, with the tropical storm hitting the East Coast of the USA, sometime between 6am and 11am the power at my house went out. Although I reported it immediately (about 11:30am), as of 6:20pm EST my On-grid electricity is still not responding.

    I mean, there is nothing to do without power. You can't watch TV, there are no lights or anything working (thou I do have an oil lamp) and you can't cook or vacuum or do laundry either. Since it's storming outside, working on the car or the lawn is out of the question, you know the fridge will be ok for 24-48 hours but you also know you can't spend all that time eating... And last but certainly not least, although you knew it all along, you know you can't resist but to click the magic button as the dark truth of the worst evil of dreaded eternal doom finally dawns on you: NO COMPUTER!!! And if that's not the worst, you do know the Internet works without current, you just can't access it without A/C.

    Life is over.
    Or, is it?

    Having lived through a 2-week power outage 3-4 years ago when Hurricane Isabelle came through here, I decided once and for all this was the last time I would find myself without power.

    So, I went out and got a generator. You're really supposed to get a line conditioner (like a voltage stabilizer but considerably more expensive) to ensure it won't fry sensitive electronic equipment (read: computer), but since I'm a redneck I decided to put my two UPS boxes (Uninterruptable Power Supplies) to the test - They are in a sense voltage stabilizers, so I hooked it all up and this post is proof in the pudding that no die-hard Internet/computer user will EVER be offline for too long.

    Product purchased: Briggs & Stratton 5.5hp 2,400w electricity generator.
    Total money spent: With a 2-year extended warranty + the yellow cord: $312.00

    p.s.: The thick yellow cable goes to the computer, the thinner orange one powers the fridge, the coffee maker (you know I gotta have coffee), and 2 lights.

  2. jkingrph

    jkingrph LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 807

    Know the feeling. Here in east Texas we occasionally get ice storms and down the power lines go. Being all electric my wife sat all day in cold while I was warm a work. I bought large, 12kw generator had electrician friend help install transfer switch and input plug, so all I have to do is throw the switch plug in and start generator, control the power useage with the circuit breakers, cannot power everything at once, but it will run ref. freezer microwave and 4 ton heat pump plus a 3hp 220v table saw all at once.
  3. newz7151

    newz7151 LawnSite Silver Member
    from Tejas
    Posts: 2,419

    Topsites, is that a Belkin UPS in that last picture? Had one like that a while back and the thing just up and crapped out one day. Couldn't even get the power to come back on. Now lately, lost another Belkin, actually, it's saying the battery is spent (after only 2 years supplying 140 watts). Went to try to find a replacement battery, and they're like $165! .. I ordered a new APC BX1200 (780 watt.. 40 minutes of backup) that came out to $162.50 with free shipping from OfficeDepot. Plus, the great thing? The replacement battery is only $55. Belkin has earned it's last chance around here.

    Also, is that a Generac style Briggs?
  4. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Posts: 4,900

    A generator for power outages, who would have ever thought of that? Kudos
  5. SodKing

    SodKing LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,648

    I know, I know...we should all stand in awe of topsites...

    TURF DOCTOR LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,138

    Hey Whaz Up With You Two Is It War Or Love.
  7. garth1967

    garth1967 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 640

    :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: oh poor topsites
  8. Brianslawn

    Brianslawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,004

    apc back ups here. big tower ones too. (several). also got generator and inverter (3000 watt/25.5 amp) in case of emergency. a few of the posts i made here in past were during power outages.
  9. General Landscaping

    General Landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 802

    Go ahead and hook up the house!
    Shut off the water heater and the main breaker; then backfeed through the A/C connection outside(by the condenser)

    Ya kinda feel like an ass when you are walking through the house turning lights on and off, running the satellite TV, and the landscape lights...... even the doorbell button light is on:)

    One night we were watching a movie with the 5.1 system in all it's glory with the windows open..... for everyone to hear:p
    The neighbors that we are cool with blew out thier candles and came over with beer and (FEMA) ice to "help"

    It's really kinda cool what happens when the power goes out..... I had no idea there were that many kids in the 'hood....... I guess when the PS or Xbox dies, they actually venture outside for a bit.
    We were under a alcohol restriction for a couple weeks. No sales in our county, extending south to points unknown. So..... several trips were made to Palm Bay for the neighborhood booze. You get some funny looks in Publix with $300 dollars of various drinks:drinkup: in the checkout line.
  10. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    Well you'd be surprised how many people don't actually have a power generator, you stop and think about it, I dare say MOST people don't have one! It's not like we live in a third world country with weekly power outages, most people in the USA get used to grid reliability to such extent, we're talking you might need a generator once every 5-10 if 20 years, not like I live in Florida but I can assure you even there I would bet at least half of all homes do NOT have one.

    Not to say all you guys are so smart, I wonder how many of you know that grid power is unstable and dirty as far as electric current goes, so if your computer is not hooked through a UPS (Uninterruptable Power Supply), then your components will reach the end of their useful life 5-10 times faster than vs. those who have a constant, steady flow.

    And while you're being so tech, I am sure most of you smart guys don't exactly have a dedicated server or a website so while you have one machine guys like me have one Windows pc at home and one Unix pc remote which needs to be administered, so you don't need your pc to be online in case someone were to place an order or some other credit card issue, you might well remember I do most everything online nowadays, it's all automated, all I have to do is check on things but that I have to do. So maybe your online status is not important to you, but it is to me, and if you have a generator, well that's just great because I've never owned one before and most people don't (at least half don't, probably 9 out of 10 don't).

    Now we got 61,000 homes out of power in the county due to tropical storm ernesto and if you think you can find a 2,400w generator for 300 bucks (or really ANY generator for ANY money) within a reasonable amount of time AFTER you realize you need one (when the storm is over, so to speak), then I wish you the best of luck because you'll be looking long and hard and hopefully nobody gouges you for a thousand dollars or more for a low power camping gen, so to speak.

    Meanwhile, all you smart ones can kiss my tail, I didn't ask for nothing, y'all ain't perfect, if you don't like it, hike it.

    I done got tired of the peanut gallery consisting of 6'7'330, olderthandirt, and who else wants to join, you got nothing good to say then how about saying nothing, I usually don't.

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