EP500s as whole house back-up!

Pardon my lack of knowledge here! I acquired 2 EP500s to use as emergency home back-up as Bluetti has suggested on their website. Clearly states it is capable of running a home for for a few days. Trouble is, it appears that even when hooked up thru the Smart Home Panel (still waiting for) the two EP500s will not exceed 240VAC and 20 amps. How does one go about running hot water heater, heat pump/ac, and well pump, each of which require a minimum of 240VAC and 30amps??? I don’t want to be correct in this case, but it looks as if only small appliances are capable of being run even with Smart Home Panel and in the split-phase bonding state. Please tell me I’m absolutely incorrect. Can the two EP500s then, actually perform “whole house back-up” with typically installed systems in a residence in the US that meets current building codes?

You have been misinformed by not understanding how much wattage is used in a standard home. To run all those units, you would need a (gas or diesel ) generator of about 20 kw.
My 2 EP500s are for use as emergency home back-up, so I have to choose what I want on when the electric grid go down. Refrigerator is first, TV second, and so on. My heat is gas, so a small fan works fine. Without the AC Grid, I am happy to have back-up power.
Harlan

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Well, since you can get 240 volts and connect to the house electrical system it is a whole house backup, but there are limits involved. The EP500s have a 2000 watt inverter (assuming you didn’t mean EP500Pro), which means each can provide 16 amps continuously. So, when both are connected via the panel you have 4000 watts available for 240 volt appliances. Taking your water heater, and assuming the 30 amps you stated is it’s actual running watts, you will need 7,200 watts to run it. Clearly the EP500s cannot run that. The HVAC is going to be similar, and out of scope of these all-in-one devices. Depending on the actual pump power requirements and start surge maybe the system can run the water pump. To me having the water pump workable would be all I’d need for a grid-down situation, but that’s me.

Thanks so much for responding to my query. Most of us, (i.e., me) don’t understand the nuances of electricity and back-up systems. I have to believe that when a company says the unit they sell:
"All-in-one Backup Power Station

The BLUETTI EP500 is shipped with a ground-breaking 5100Wh LiFePO4 battery pack and a 2000W rated (3000W for the EP500 Pro) pure sine wave AC inverter. This class-leading power station brings you the power to run your entire party, family camping trip, cabin workshops, or even your whole house for a day or two in the event of an unexpected outage. Up to 15 outlet sources allow you to power anything from laptops and air conditioners to your electric vehicles without breaking a sweat."

My take is that this is misleading at best, since it won’t “run a whole house for a day or two”… It appears to only run part of your whole house. The fundamentals aren’t even covered with the EP500s. I don’t mind running a generator with the understanding it won’t run the whole house, because it wasn’t likely sold stating it would. To be fair, there should have been Corporate statements accompanying the claims, clearly stating it’s limitations and to avoid the inevitable litigation because it won’t run a whole house. Too many people like me just didn’t comprehend that despite the statements the Co. makes, it won’t even run, apparently, any 240Vac 30 amp circuits. UGH!!! I’m of the impression nobody makes whole house anything (a/c, well pumps, h/w heaters) that run on 20 amps., since the 1970s., that’s 50 yrs ago! This pictogram would have gotten my attention!

Get the phrase “This class-leading power station brings you the power to run your entire party, family camping trip, cabin workshops, or even your whole house for a day or two in the event of an unexpected outage.” out of your website product description!

I find it odd that you clearly understand all the types of electrical devices in your home, seem to grasp the concept of 240 vac circuits and amperage but fail to grasp the most basic concepts of power required to operate a device or how much stored engergy would be needed to operate the devices for a given period.

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The little I do know has all happened since I took ownership of the EP500s. I soon realized things weren’t going to work when I asked the electrician, who was going to install the SHP, if I could run what I needed to run with it and his answer was “NO!”. I bought the EP500s based on what Bluetti was claiming (the whole house thing) and when the “rubber hit the road”, I discovered it wasn’t going to work. I only wish I knew even the little bit I almost know now, as I wouldn’t have made the decision to buy something that cannot work as advertised. I made a mistake of “buying” the line it would handle what it claimed to handle. In many instances, a consumer new to this whole idea, will not grasp this concept like a manufacturer in the business would, and I simply feel that it is incumbent on them to not use terms that have specific meaning like: whole house means exactly that. I believe this issue will be repeated by others who don’t have experience with generators and who do not have ten years experience in the solar business (the company’s engineers certainly should know the EP500 shouldn’t be called a whole house back-up.)…at least not without further explanation plainly stated. Just my opinion! I was hoping to be able to run only one large system at a time minimally, to limp by on in an outage. I wasn’t intending to run everything simultaneously. I actually love everything about this unit except, that it is being sold as doing something it never could. I am really excited for the industry in general and Bluetti as a company, except as it applies here, in this particular instance.

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If you simply look at your monthly power bill it shows your usage per month in kilowatt hours. Divide this figure by 30 to get a daily average kilowatt hours used and compare your daily kilowatt hours with battery capacity Kilowatt hours. That will give you an idea of how long any battery storage system will last in your situation. You will still have to determine what items in your household use large amounts of electricity to decide if the electrical output in watts or amps is sufficient to run your items. In general heat producing items and central AC will consume the most power.

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I have installed a full house wired transfer switch in my home to use a 240 VAC, 5 kW Onan gas powered generator during long power failures since I live in a hurricane affected area (Hurricane Maria in September 2017 left me without power for six weeks). The transfer switch was wired directly to the main panel, needing only five wires between them, and four to the generator input (using a L14-30R).

I ordered a dual AC300 and B300 setup with the P0030A Fusion Box for my home. Now I will use the same transfer switch and input with the new setup then add solar panels to get free electrical energy, and replace the generator. I did measure the needed power and did many changes to reduce my power consumption down to only 5 kW per hour (my generator limit). You may have to do the same if you wish for your EP500 setup as a whole home backup.

I replaced all my lamps with LED bulbs, then replaced my clothes washer, refrigerator, and room A/C with “Energy Star” appliances, then lowered my inline electric water heater to its minimum setting. My wife and I schedule the use of all the electrical appliances so it will never pass 5 kW and overload the generator. With the dual AC300 setup, we can use up to 6 kW per hour, and feel safer and better. You can do the same and even have more power due to the 10 kW that the dual EP500 gives you.

Get a good electrician (or an EE), and do the planning well, then take action .

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How much was your free energy again😜

Thanks so much to all of you for the advice, support etc., ideas and suggestions. I have learned way too much too fast and yet so much more to go. I will use the EP500s as much as I can, now that I am “over” the shock of having reality hit me the way it did. Certainly, I should have had more education heading into this venture. I am optimistic that I can get by with what I have and am blown away by the concept of these battery generators, their silence and capabilities, even as they are. What a wonderful world it would be if everyone had one of these products…as I’m sure the silence would be stunning…and the world will be a better place, as a result of clean/renewable energy! Have a great year everyone… :slight_smile:

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The E500 even by itself can be a very valuable emergency backup for the “whole house”, you can’t just use everything in the house at once or the high energy appliance. The good thing is that you can wire it into your panel, and then select what to use. You should be able to comfortably power your lights and communication gear, TV, fridges, as well as gas heating appliance and sump pump for a while. If you have sufficient solar, perhaps even indefinitely. I am making do on a much smaller system based around a Jackery 1500 (still waiting for the AC300 in Canada) that is charged by my EV battery. I can run the most critical loads in the “whole house” with only 1000 watts average, peak around 1800w for maybe 10 sec when the sump pump turns on.

Running battery / solar to power hungry appliance like electric heat, AC, dryer is going to be hard without heavy investment.

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As I posted above, investing in “Energy Star” appliances is a long term decision, and worth it. We use five clothes lines (a.k.a. “Solar Dryer”) instead of the electric dryer although it is also an “Energy Star” appliance, and only use it if it is raining outdoors. We never need heating of any type since we never have winter, only “spring” and “summer”. Yesterday we were at 85 degrees.

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Hi Snowstorm. Did you wire a single ep500 into your house and if so, how did you do it? I’d like to compare notes.

Felton