An automatic transfer switch (ATS) is essential for residential and industrial generators. The switch will reroute the power instantaneously from the main supply in the event of a black out. It allows for the seamless switching of power from the main breaker to the standby generator.
Here you will learn about a few tips to help you select the right ATS for your generator. After reading this blog post you will be able to select the right switch for your residential generator.
Automatic Transfer Switch Size
Automatic transfer switch size refers to the amperage of the switch. You should select a switch that can optimally power your generator.
The size of the ATS varies from thirty to five thousand amperes. An ATS with a higher amperage switch is suitable for a large generator. Contact a certified generator technician to learn more about the correct size of the ATS for your generator.
Transfer Switch Ratings
An ATS can have different ratings depending on whether it can be used indoors or outdoors. A rating of NEMA 1 means that the switch is for indoor use only. The switch with this rating cannot be used outside since the case is not water proof.
If you want to install the ATS panel outside, you should buy one with a NEMA 3R rating. A switch with this rating is water resistant. It can be installed in a location that is exposed to the snow and rain. You can also install the ATS with this rating in the laundry room, where the device will be exposed to condensation or splashes of water.
ATS are available in three different configurations. You should buy an ATS that meets your power requirements in the event of a blackout.
Standard ATS – The standard configuration involves an ATS installed with a subpanel in different circuits. It is an outdated configuration that has been replaced with load center and service disconnect configurations.
Load Center – In this configuration, the ATS and the sub-panel is combined in one circuit. The configuration allows simultaneous handling of 8 to 16 circuits. The load center ATS are recommended if you only want to power basic appliances in the home.
Installing the load center ATS is complex as it requires wiring of individual circuits from the panel to the generator. The labor cost and time is greater compared to other options. This is the recommended ATS configuration if the power requirement is less than 100 Amps.
Service Disconnect – The configuration is appropriate for handling large loads. It is suitable for homes that use more than 200 Amps. This is the costliest of the three options but is easier to install compared to the load center configuration.
Contact an expert generator technician to learn more about the best ATS configuration for your home.
You should buy an ATS with power management features. The switch should be able to manage the load effectively without putting pressure on your generator. This is particularly important if you have lots of high-load appliances such as two or more air conditioners and heaters.
An ATS with a power management feature will turn of the high-load device before transferring to the generator if it detects that the generator cannot meet the power demand. The device will prioritize the loads and turn them on and off automatically, depending on the available power.
You should contact a certified technician if you want generator repairs in Huntsville. Generac Superstore offers generator services in Alabama and Tennessee. We deal with both industrial and residential generators. Contact us today by dialing (855) 880-1880 for generator repairs and installation in Birmingham, AL, and Nashville, TN.