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Ummm.... if the power is off in your house isn't it also likely to be off at the local DCFCs as well....?
Down substations are fixed quickly. Long outages are more likely to be tied to having many down powerlines around the metro due to ice storms etc. In that case, each down powerline usually only affects a city block or two.
 

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Ummm.... if the power is off in your house isn't it also likely to be off at the local DCFCs as well....?
Depends how local, but often no. Localized outages are the most common in many regions (and annoying).
Down substations are fixed quickly. Long outages are more likely to be tied to having many down powerlines around the metro due to ice storms etc. In that case, each down powerline usually only affects a city block or two.
January 1998 North American Ice Storm
Millions were left in the dark for periods varying from days to several weeks, and in some instances, months
The way I see it, those localized outages that can be fixed relatively quickly are something you can probably get through without emergency power. It's the big ones that last a long time where you really need a backup, and for those it doesn't seem to me like relying on nearby chargers is a sound strategy.

Sure, California isn't at a big risk for ice storms. But earthquakes, fires that melt transmission towers, mudslides that take out substations...? Or that nightmare of power grid engineers: a Carrington Event?
 

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January 1998 North American Ice Storm

The way I see it, those localized outages that can be fixed relatively quickly are something you can probably get through without emergency power. It's the big ones that last a long time where you really need a backup, and for those it doesn't seem to me like relying on nearby chargers is a sound strategy.

Sure, California isn't at a big risk for ice storms. But earthquakes, fires that melt transmission towers, mudslides that take out substations...? Or that nightmare of power grid engineers: a Carrington Event?
Obviously anything is possible. But I live 30 miles from the epicenter of the '89 Loma Prieta earthquake and while we lost power at home, it was certainly no more than a 15 mile drive to a place that was still powered.

Meanwhile in the past 2 years, through safety shutoffs or local failures, we've had >10 days (cumulative) with no power.

As for Carrington events, I guess it depends how prepared you want to be... My long-term plan is rooftop solar (with a small battery backup, since without it, the solar shuts down as soon as the grid goes down).
 

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It's the big ones that last a long time where you really need a backup, and for those it doesn't seem to me like relying on nearby chargers is a sound strategy.
The really tall 115kv transmission towers, and the 13kv buried distribution wires are usually not affected. Next time you DCFC, look around. Is your DCFC fed by overhead wires? Probably, you'll see a transformer pad and a distribution voltage connection cabinet (looks like a green dog house), connected to a buried 13kv feeder loop. The feeders are often connected to the substation at both ends (or to different substations).

The 1998 storm one was unusual, in that it did take-out transmission towers (115kv). In a more typical ice storm, you may have hundreds of down trees, which fall onto neighborhood power lines. Each tree takes-out 40 homes or so, maybe 2 city blocks. But there may 100 such down trees to clear, which takes days. That would affect (say) 4000 homes. It's not that there is one big wire serving 4000 homes which breaks, and then takes a week to repair (well, maybe there is if you live 60 miles from Whitehorse, but not in Teaneck or Kansas City).
 

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Discussion Starter #26
Wattage wise it will work fine. Two things to keep in mind:

1 - If it's not an inverter generator then the power output might be a bit dirty. That could cause the EVSE or Bolt to stop charging intermittently.

2 - The EVSE will look for a path to ground. If the generator isn't grounded it might fault out. I've seen videos of people trying to do this with a generator just sitting in a parking lot and the EVSE refused to charge. Once they grounded the generator it started working.
I have confirmed yes it is an inverter generator so that is good.

It has a ground post with a wing nut that I can fab something to drive a grounding stake into the ground...would that work?
 

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Discussion Starter #27
My anecdote is that the solar installers never entered our house to complete the install. They accomplished everything on the roof, in the garage, and in the attic in 2 days.
My electric panel is in my basement and the attic access is in one of my kids bedrooms.
 

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Discussion Starter #28 (Edited)
Responding to the OP: Highly recommend Goal Zero or if you have the technical know how you can build your own solar generator and battery backup. Really easy. GOAL ZERO YETI 1250 W/CART Used ones are cheap.
I did not know this existed. This seems like it would not be powerful enough for what I need (1800Wh min) for my refrigerator and small space heater. Also my expectation with the power being down it will happen when it is not sunny out.

I however believe I may be missing something else with your comment so if that is the case please send me any more info on what you are suggesting.
 

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I did not know this existed. This seems like it would not be powerful enough for what I need (1800Wh min) for my refrigerator and small space heater. Also my expectation with the power being down it will happen when it is not sunny out.

I however believe I may be missing something else with your comment so if that is the case please send me any more info on what you are suggesting.
The Goal Zeros are powerful and some can output more than a standard 15amp 120v circuit. The 1500x can output 2000 watts which is impressive. Pure sinewaves of course. I've screwed around with them and I like them. One problem is that they are not grounded so when you plug an EVSE into them it faults because it can't detect a ground. You can fix that by building a rather janky adapter. I'd take a 5-15r with a ground, wire out a ground wire (probably 10awg bare copper) then wire in a 5-15p to the hot and neutral points on the back of the 5-15r. I'd recommend a replacement receptacle for an extension cord. Then it'll charge your car at 12 ampere just fine. The problem I have with them is that the solar charge controller can only take 50v and my rec panels I am putting on my trailer are 61v.

My electric panel is in my basement and the attic access is in one of my kids bedrooms.
It takes a good electrician 3 hours end to end to do the wiring. Maybe longer if it's in the basement which is just a pain in the butt. It's more complicated if you have to run the romex through the attic, out to the other side of the building (probably the north side which in my experience is normally where mains connections are). Run (and bend) conduit down the side of the house then finagle it through into the basement through whatever means. It's a messy process and would really increase your exposure because the installers and electricians would be all over the place. You are wise to not do it now.
 

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The Goal Zeros are powerful and some can output more than a standard 15amp 120v circuit.
They aren't powerful, they're just batteries connected to a pure sine inverter. The biggest one costs $5000 and is just a 6 kWh battery. You already have a 10x larger battery.

If you want emergency battery power, you have it with the Bolt. If you're looking for something to charge the Bolt on, then a gas/diesel/propane/natural gas generator is the answer. Don't buy a battery to charge a battery.
 

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They aren't powerful, they're just batteries connected to a pure sine inverter. The biggest one costs $5000 and is just a 6 kWh battery. You already have a 10x larger battery.

If you want emergency battery power, you have it with the Bolt. If you're looking for something to charge the Bolt on, then a gas/diesel/propane/natural gas generator is the answer. Don't buy a battery to charge a battery.
2kW is a lot from a 5-15p. I agree though, at the end of the day you have a 60kWh pack on your hands with 1.6kWs right out of your DC/DC converter. I bought a magnum dimensions csw2012 to run my house off of and run electric stoves out of my car when I am in the back country. Fantastic unit. Used was $200 new is about $700 which is why I recommend the used Goal Zero over the inverter. The reason I chose the inverter over the Goal Zero? I plan on making my own battery out of 18650s that can be changed from a 4s config to an 8s or 12s configuration if I want more DC power for whatever reason. Also so I can make "camping bricks"; three 2kWh packs so I can take one camping and leave two charging in my trailer house when I go camping or if I need to charge a motorbike or eBike.
 

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2kW is a lot from a 5-15p. I agree though, at the end of the day you have a 60kWh pack on your hands with 1.6kWs right out of your DC/DC converter. I bought a magnum dimensions csw2012 to run my house off of and run electric stoves out of my car when I am in the back country. Fantastic unit. Used was $200 new is about $700 which is why I recommend the used Goal Zero over the inverter. The reason I chose the inverter over the Goal Zero? I plan on making my own battery out of 18650s that can be changed from a 4s config to an 8s or 12s configuration if I want more DC power for whatever reason. Also so I can make "camping bricks"; three 2kWh packs so I can take one camping and leave two charging in my trailer house when I go camping or if I need to charge a motorbike or eBike.
The cost of the Goal Zero is high because you get an all in one package too. You are getting a 2kW pure sine inverter (which is important), a 50v solar charge controller, BMS that can charge on 12v or 120v. The batteries are a Lithium-Nickel-Manganese-Cobalt-Oxide chemistry (prismatic form if I am not mistaken). I don't own one, I personally prefer building my own because I have very specific needs but you really can't beat the price. Just get them used. Well, that's what I say about most things anyway.
 

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Depends how local, but often no. Localized outages are the most common in many regions (and annoying). Here in California for instance, even the PSPSes (Public Safety Power Shutoffs) tend to limit themselves to the neighborhood or region. Ditto legitimate outages due to downed lines etc. Now if you live in hurricane country, that’s probably a different story.
I've wondered about this since I got a Bolt. I live in heavily forested coastal mountains of northern California where outages from downed lines are not uncommon, especially this time of year. I have a generator which is more than adequate for running a refrigerator and furnace blower but is too loud and thirsty to use longer than a couple of hours at a time.
 

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The charger in the bolt is very expensive. Since our Bolt isn't under warranty, I wouldn't feed it from a generator, except maybe an inverter generator. Or a Xantrex inverter hooked to our ICE.

To flip things around, we sold our generator with the plan of using our EV to power the essentials (especially blower on furnace in winter, or fridge + freezer in summer). We can drive the EV to a DCFC if it runs low.
Have you done this yet?
 

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I've wondered about this since I got a Bolt. I live in heavily forested coastal mountains of northern California where outages from downed lines are not uncommon, especially this time of year. I have a generator which is more than adequate for running a refrigerator and furnace blower but is too loud and thirsty to use longer than a couple of hours at a time.
There's already a good thread on how various people have used their Bolts for emergency power, but in short, if you have a good inverter (or are prepared to buy one), and you don't require more than 1kW sustained, it's not hard to do.

Of course if your access road is also blocked by falling trees, that can be a more serious nuisance...
 

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Most often around here (So. CA), the attic access is somewhere within the residence. Usually in a bedroom closet or a hallway.
I've had solar installers twice. They never went into the attic. They did have to go into the garage to gain access to the main electrical panel. They wore masks and stepped back if they had to come to the door for any reason.
 

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I've wondered about this since I got a Bolt. I live in heavily forested coastal mountains of northern California where outages from downed lines are not uncommon, especially this time of year. I have a generator which is more than adequate for running a refrigerator and furnace blower but is too loud and thirsty to use longer than a couple of hours at a time.
This is what I just picked up - "used very good" at almost 50% off and there's still one in stock. I think people here have gotten the Samlex PST-2000 instead of the SSW but I figured I'd try it and save $450.


Also, have people actually hard-wired their inverters into the panel? I'd be interested in that if I upgrade to the PST.
 
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