generator for condo : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Can anyone tell me what is the best type of generator to run from a 2nd floor condo w/ a small deck in a large city in order to get a minimum amount of power for vital necessities? Are battery-operated generators available? Your input is greatly appreciated.

-- John Townsend (, June 17, 1998


You can get mains-voltage power out of a lead-acid (auto) battery using a thing called an inverter. Boat suppliers and mobile home suppliers are most likely places to get them (and advice on living off 12V batteries)

If you expect periodic power outages instead of a big blackout, an inverter, a high-power charger, and batteries is the way to go. Inverters and chargers are silent and clean - batteries too as long as you don't spill acid. Basically you are storing electricity while the utility supply is on to use when it's not. NB keep the batteries outside at least while charging - you may get (explosive) hydrogen gas coming off while they charge.

If you expect a multi-day continuous blackout you need a generator and fuel reserve. It's probably illegal and certainly dumb to keep the latter in a 2nd floor condo (in case there's a fire). You could possibly use a generator on the balcony without getting carbon monoxide poisoning, but you'd need tolerant neighbours.

Candles, camping gas appliances, AA batteries, and low-power portable electronic gadgets, may be a better idea -- or relocate if you are pessimistic.

-- Nigel Arnot (, June 17, 1998.

If you plan on remaining in a 'condo' in a populated area, your LEAST problem will be electricity. When folks start running out of food, it will be literally, 'dog eat dog'.

Milne's First Rule of Y2K: "If you live within five miles of a 7-11, you're toast."

-- Paul Milne (, June 21, 1998.

In response to your generator question, I have found the Onan 6500K generator to be terrific. You can also get the model that runs at 1800rpm if you are worried about noise. The standard model runs at 3600rpm.

Best of luck!


-- Joshua Blyden (, June 23, 1998.

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