This is a discussion on Generators and long term grid down within the General Prepper and Survival Talk forums, part of the Survivalist, Prepper, Bushcrafter, Forest Rangers category; Weighing my options about the kind of generator I will be purchasing soon. I am leaning toward a pretty big output -- 12-16K and a ...
Weighing my options about the kind of generator I will be purchasing soon.
I am leaning toward a pretty big output -- 12-16K and a 500 gal propane tank. This will serve me nicely for short term outages, like up to a month or maybe two. But in a real grid-down crisis, like loosing electricity forever, a generator will prove worthless after your fuel supply is exhausted. There will be no more propane deliveries. Even if we're using gasoline, how long before supplies completely dry up -- a few weeks?
So I am rethinking my strategy. Maybe I don't need as big a setup as I was planning. I could extend the time usage on a generator by only using it for a few hours every other day. The purpose here would be to ONLY power my refrigerator and garage freezer. I found that during the last hurricane that hit Virginia -- where we lost power for 30 hours -- my food stayed cold enough in the freezers, never getting above the freezing point. I couldn't have gone much longer though. So, if I only fire up the generator every other day for a few hours to drive the temps back to 0 degrees, I could maybe extend the fuel supply to double what I was planning on. The problem is that I (or anyone) would be tempted to use the generator for more non-essential stuff like lighting, or tv watching, or using the stove, etc., etc.
No matter what though -- if the grid stays down, at the most within a few months, the fuel supply will be gone and surviving from then on will be like living back in the 1800s. I believe the grid is a very fragile thing and susceptible to all kinds of mischief from terrorists, WWIII, or natural calamities. If wide-spread anarchy takes control, normal activities -- like supply and distribution -- will be history.
I have to keep my eye on the ball.
"Hit hard, hit fast, hit often" -- Adm William "Bull" Halsey
Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory.
Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.
be careful with sound. you could make yourself a big target with any generator. the same goes for lights being on at night...it is a excellent prep but using it only during the day and on very important things like power tools would be my strategy.
“What could I say to you that would be of value, except that perhaps you seek too much, that as a result of your seeking you cannot find.”
― Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha
IMO a generator is great for SHORT term scenarios such as a bad storm taking power out for a few days.But thats not a shtf scenario (well maybe locally,but still).
If you are wanting to run a generator LONG term after a major shtf scenario,it will just attract unwanted attention to your whereabout's.When all is quiet from nothing electrical running anymore,the sound of a generator running can be carried quite a ways and will be sweet music to most that hear it.Could make you a target.
One thing to consider would be running a diesel generator.
Using decaying biomass, you can produce your own bio-diesel with a bit of effort and time.
This could give you a drastically longer run-time, out as far as you're willing to grow/gather the bio matter.
"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats." - H. L. Mencken
We have a giant excess of some of the best fuel making bio matter there is about to cross the border and announce pestilent ownership?
Heh heh short of that? Be the first to hit your local liposuction shops dumpster - but they do have a fit about it so don't get caught.
My plan is the Generac Stand By Generator for the whole house. My reason is simple, the EPA War on Coal and Cheap Energy.
None of us can do a damn thing about an EMP or a Total Collapse of the Grid. BUT, my hope is to be prepared for rolling black outs caused by a strain on our Grid due to coal power plants being shut down or targeted to be shut down.
Gives me some time to get a Solar System installed to run my whole place.
Last edited by Slippy; 10-02-2014 at 11:07 AM.
Generators are bullet magnets. Wouldn't be high on my list but nice to have.
Solar panels are the way to go with battery back up. Nice and quite, no need for fuel. Will work for years, hopefully. Maybe a wind turbine or water wheel generator if possible. Use along with wood heat, oil lamps, etc. Try to keep a low profile and be quite. Your generator roaring away will bring all sorts of unwanted visitors.