Transfer switches are crucial. In terms of using a generator, a transfer switch can establish a safer connection between your house’s electrical wiring and your generator. While the device remains installed on the service panel, it makes it possible for your generator to run more safely and securely than it used to be without it.
The best transfer switch for generator also protects your electrical circuits from ‘frying.’ It thus contributes heavily in terms of building a healthy and reliable environment in your home on the whole.
Best Transfer Switch for Generator – The Guide for 2020
Being an electrical device can get tricky for you to find a quality transfer switch from the market. To reduce your hassle, we’ll discuss some standard transfer switch options you’d love to have. Let’s begin!
- Reliance Controls Corporation 31406CRK 30 Amp
- Reliance Controls Pro/Tran 10-Circuit 30 Amp Generator Transfer Switch
- Connecticut Electric EGS107501G2KIT EmerGen
- Reliance Controls TF151W Easy/Tran Transfer Switch
- Go Power! TS-30 30 Amp Automatic Transfer Switch
1. Reliance Controls Corporation Transfer Switch
First, we start with Reliance Corporations 30 Amp transfer switch, undoubtedly one of the best transfer switches for the market generator. It has quality securing mechanisms that allow a safer transfer of power when your home generator is running and when the grid power comes back.
The circuit wires you found in it are made visible with red and black wires, making it easy for you to distinguish. The maneuvering gets even easier with a large three-position switch. These light switch toggles will stay at a line stance in the middle. Simply put it ‘Gen’ position when your grid power is gone.
They also have a patented junction box in place for easy installations of hardware, saving you loads of time and money!
The issue of overloading is quite common among the generator users. Reliance’s intelligent watt meter mechanism lets you observe the loads and helps take preventive measures to reduce overloading issues. Thus, it helps you decrease the wear and tear for enduring safer performance.
Overall, this reliance transfer switch is an absolutely outstanding piece of equipment for the overall safety during generator use, always recommended!
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- Easy Installation
- Distinguishable Circuit Wires
- Sturdy and Large Three Positions Switches
- Watt Meters Prevent Overloading
- Can Sometime Have Issues with AFCI Breakers
2. Reliance Controls 30 Amp Generator Transfer Switch
Right now, we’d be talking about another outstandingly well-performing transfer switch by Reliance Controls. This incredible transfer switch supports a generator up to 7500 watts and lets you transfer individual circuits separately.
The red and black marked circuit wires help you understand load center connection easily and devise it quickly. Switches are larger in proportion, make activities easier. The three-positioned setting is enabled in this one as well; just switch to ‘Gen’ when the power is out.
The junction box equipped with the transfer switch makes installations a lot trouble-free and uncomplicated.
This transfer switch, too, comes with a wattmeter, letting you comfortably monitor how much load the generator is taking in. For example, if you have a 2000 watt generator and the appliances taking in 2500 watts of power, it will exceed your generator’s designed wattage, causing an overload. But with the wattmeter, you’ll be able to constantly keep watch and make sure it doesn’t cross the limit.
You may find minor issues with the conduit being a bit hard to bend. But except for this simple problem, it is an incredibly well-designed transfer switch.
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- Convenience in Operation
- Supports Up to 7500 Watts
- Large and Highly Well Designed Switches
- Comes with Overload Preventing Mechanism
- Using the Conduit Can Seem Hard.
3. Connecticut Electric Manual Transfer Switch Kit
At the third spot, we have here another highly well-received transfer switch by Connecticut Electric. This quality device is NEMA 3R rainproof, which means you’ll be able to use it both indoors and outdoors.
Often, installing the transfer switch becomes a serious hassle. It takes away your precious time while you get a huge bill if done by a professional. But with this one by Connecticut Electric, you’ve expected an incredibly easy installation process that sets the users free from additional nuisance.
The two poles 240-volt circuit support design makes it an appropriate device to use a water sump pump without issues. So, similar to sump pumps, you can definitely bring one for regular use for using heavy machinery with it.
If you’re worried about a power surge, then this is something one can count on. Because the double throw rocker switches installed in the device totally reduces down any potentialities of surges making your appliances a lot safer! Thus, it enhances this device’s overall safety rating and makes it a reliable piece of equipment you can rely upon.
The individual circuit switches can be a bit delicate, so we’d suggest you use it with care. Despite this minor issue, the device should perform exceptionally well overall.
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- NEMA 3 Rainproof Let’s You Use Outdoor
- Hassle-Free Installation Process
- Can be Used With Sump Pumps
- Double Throw Rocker Switches Makes it Safer
- Individual Circuit Switches Have to Be Used with Care
4. Reliance Controls TF151W Easy/Tran Transfer Switch
Designed for a single 15 Amp circuit, this transfer switch by Reliance Controls comes with a number of crucial potentials to tackle a sudden power outage. The safe and secure mechanism involved in the device lets you rely upon the generator with the risk of beck feeding the utility.
They also offer you an 18-inch aluminum conduit, which is pre-wired for trouble-free connection on the circuit breaker.
This transfer switch supports up to 1875 watts running watts generators. It also accepts power from almost all sorts of backup devices such as inverters, fuel cells, generators, RV generators, and any possible source that has the capability to provide adequate current.
Although the device is filled with tons of benefits, it may seem a bit problematic for you to function as it doesn’t have the feature of switching to neutral. It can risk the appliances if you somehow miss-wire the neutral and the hot.
Despite the tiny issue like this, the device should still provide you with outstanding performance and should be a good buy overall.
- Prevents Back Feeding
- Easy to Operate
- Supports Up to 1875 Running Watts
- Supports a Large Array of Backup Systems
- Doesn’t Switch to Neutral
5. Go Power! TS-30 30 Amp Automatic Transfer Switch
Finally, we have here the TS-30 transfer switch by Go Power. This is an automatic transfer switch for a portable generator. The dual-channel transfer switch lets you operate two 30 amps sources at once. Often, the users complain about the installation’s complicated nature, but this device comes with knockouts, which makes installation a lot easier.
It is important to keep in mind switching between the utility or the generator; both takes up to 30 seconds.
This is an automatic transfer switch, which means it has a built-in intelligent design that means you don’t need to go and toggle it on or off manually every time power goes out.
Although this device comes with a large number of benefits, you can find it slightly larger than it should be. Further, the wiring diagram isn’t as helpful as it could’ve been, so it can thus get slightly difficult to understand the wiring by yourself.
Except for the minor issues mentioned above, the rest looks absolutely fine and should be a good buy altogether.
- Knockouts Present in It Provides Easier Installation
- Switches to Relevant Power Source by Itself
- Can be Used with Inverters
- Reduces Extra Hassle During Power Outage
- Slightly Larger in Size
- Lacking Wiring Diagram
What Is a Transfer Switch?
A transfer switch is a device that accelerates and simplifies the function of switching between two power sources, i.e., utility to the generator, or generator to utility. When you activate this device, it instantly transitions from your existing energy source to the secondary one.
Do I Need a Transfer Switch?
Obviously, you do. The best generator transfer switch makes transitioning from one power source to the other easier, less time-consuming, and safer. The other methods involved in switching make it a lot more difficult and pose a sizable amount of risk that you should avoid. So, all in all, it is best to have a transfer switch installed when you’re using a generator.
What Should I Look for in a Transfer Switch?
There can be a lot of things you can inquire about before getting one. Try getting as many power outputs as you need. If you have a large house with many appliances, you can have 3-4 power outlets supporting the transfer switch. You can also get an automatic transfer switch (ATS) for an easier and hassle-free transfer of power. While getting the manual ones to try looking for a sturdy, three-way switch from power on/off to neutral. Finally, it is best to find ones that offer you a warranty or a guarantee.
How does a generator transfer switch work?
When you switch on a transfer switch, it transfers power from your primary power source to the secondary. For example, your utility power is the primary or commonly used source for power, but during a power outage, you simply use it to activate the secondary power source for energy. The entire action is reversed when the utility power comes back.
Types of Transfer Switches
During the entire guide, we talked about both the manual transfer switches and the automatic transfer switches. Here we give you a short definition of the two:
Manual Transfer Switches
You yourself have to approach the transfer switch box with the manual transfer switches and switch the power from primary to secondary during outages by either pulling the switches up or down manually. The whole action again has to reverse manually when utility power comes back.
Automatic Transfer Switches
Automatic Transfer Switches (ATS) do the same job, but you don’t have to be present or pull the switch up or down manually in this case. The ATS has its own intelligent sensors that automatically switch to different power sources depending upon the situation. It saves you the extra hassle of going to the transfer switch every time power goes out.
How to Install a Manual Transfer Switch for a Portable Generator
How far can a generator be from the transfer switch?
Although there are no hard and fast rules that talk about a maximum distance, it is generally better to place 60-70 feet away from your transfer switch.
Which is a better transfer switch or interlock?
It is difficult to compare the two. Both have their own way of simplifying the transfer of power sources. But interlock gives more flexibility and offers it at a lesser cost than its counterpart.
How much does it cost to install a transfer switch for a generator?
The entire cost of completely setting up and installing a transfer switch for your generator can vary based on different factors such as place, the complexity of the task, and the technicians’ own preference. But in general, it can cost $200 at a minimum to $400 max in parts of the states.
A transfer switch is an extremely important piece of equipment for those who live in a disaster-prone area. Connecting your electrical appliances to the generator manually with a cable every time power goes out seems like an utterly dull-witted thing to do. And the issue of water and other environmental and electrical challenges on top of that makes it completely inconvenient and a whole lot riskier.
To tackle this strangely troublesome situation, transfer switches can play a vital role. They automatize the whole process. The systematization involved in this device’s whole design makes switching between utility and generator unbelievably easy and convenient. With just a push of a button, you can move between two entirely separate power sources anytime you want. It also wipes any possibility of manually putting a cord to connect to your appliances and reduces risk to a minimum level. We’ve discussed some of the best transfer switches for the generator. Now it’s up to you. Get the one that suits your needs and start living hassle-free and safer from now on!
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