Click here to Find a Contractor in your area.
Welcome! Here are the website rules, as well as some tips for using this forum.
Need to contact us? Visit https://heatinghelp.com/contact-us/.

running wm ultra off a generator

Anyone know if there is a problem running a wm ultra off a gasoline powered portable generator?  I've heard/read that it is not good, "clean" power and not really good for operating a computer or other sensitive electronic equipment. It's great to have a heated house when the power's out, but I don't want to fry my boiler.

Thanks,

Izzy

Comments

  • Charlie from wmass
    Charlie from wmass Member Posts: 4,195
    What you heard is true

    Unless you have a some sort of filter you are risking your boiler controls. an "uninterrupted power supply" would provide protection. It is like running any computer off a generator. A gamble at best, I know I may have killed my Keriug this morning.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • IZZY
    IZZY Member Posts: 50
    How's it work

    I thought "uniterrupted power supplies" were just that - an (almost) immediate backup of power so that if you were, say, working on a computer you wouldn't lose anything you were working on.  How does that protect the equipment?  What am I missing? And is there a way to run my boiler through that if I need to use a generator?

    Thanks.
  • Tim Potter
    Tim Potter Member Posts: 272
    UPS

    Many types of gadgets calling themselves UPS. My understanding, (limited) is some of the cheaper items are really only surge protectors, and the more expensive ones are truly "Power Supplies". I think the unit you would be looking for is one that CLEANS the power as it goes through the unit. I believe (correct me if I am wrong) it takes the incoming power and transforms it to 12 volts then goes to the battery, then through an Inverter back to 120. That way its always correcting for input power fluctuation and frequency variation.

    Check West Marine for Inverters that are used aboard boats for info too.
    Winter Park, CO & Lenexa, KS
  • Mark Adams
    Mark Adams Member Posts: 64
    UPS Power Quality

    Hi Gang,



    Most of the commonly available UPS boxes under $500 are as described in the previous post with one big exception. They output square wave power! So they are no different than the common generator in that regard. There are only a few things that really don't work well with square wave including laser printers, hair dryers and a few more that escape my memory right now.



    All that said, I have a WM Ultra 80 and have run it for days on my Generac 4000XL when the power has been out. I have an emergency sub panel and switching so I can run about 1/2 my house with the utility power off. I also have a whole house surge protector on the main panel.



    All the best,

    Mark

    Clarence, NY
  • Mark Adams
    Mark Adams Member Posts: 64
    Forgot to mention....

    ..that if you run the numbers for a small UPS, say one that uses two 7A-hr gel cells, you'll be shocked at just how long it will operate the boiler, pumps and other controls you may have. These units are really designed to allow your devices to properly shut down in an orderly manner or span the gap between power off and backup power being restored.



    Mark
  • Jean-David Beyer
    Jean-David Beyer Member Posts: 2,666
    Is that still true?

    "Most of the commonly available UPS boxes under $500 are as described in

    the previous post with one big exception. They output square wave power!"



    My first UPS, an APC Back-UPS 400 watt model, produced a stepped sinusoid. This is a lot better than a square wave, but some motors would probably not like it. Switching power supplies such as used in computers, should have no trouble with it. I now use APC Smart-UPS boxes and they are all claimed to produce sine wave power. Perhaps they are actualy stepped as well, but if so, they have a lot more steps.Computers have no trouble with it, nor does the box on the side of my house that converts the light signals from the fiber optic cable into ethernet signals for my computer.



    I suppose it depends on the sensitivity of the device you are using just how good the waveform of the power has to be. If a device cannot tolerate the output of some power sources, their manufacturer should specify a maximum level of acceptable waveform distortion. As far as I know, none of them do.
  • Tim Potter
    Tim Potter Member Posts: 272
    edited November 2011
    Wiki Info

    Well here is the wiki on this topic



    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inverter_(electrical)



    Tim
    Winter Park, CO & Lenexa, KS
  • Tim Potter
    Tim Potter Member Posts: 272
    edited November 2011
    Wiki Info

    double post - sorry
    Winter Park, CO & Lenexa, KS
This discussion has been closed.