How much power does a cooling unit for a wine cellar typically use

and will these eventually be used in lieu of backup generators, etc.

http://www.teslamotors.com/powerwall

10 kWh does not seem like that much power if a power outage occurs. Am I wrong?

That is plenty for a wine cooling unit.

Someone mentioned to me this morning that they wished they had one of these a few years ago when the power went out during a major storm, the sump pump stopped working (no power), and they had major flooding. I, of course, thought wine cellar.

I’ll take my 3x as large natural gas backup generator that cost 1/2 the price of these things for now. The argument is that my natural gas may fail if that utility fails as well - but I’m neither in an earthquake prone area and once the battery depletes, the Tesla is worthless too.

When the power fails, just don’t open the cellar door to be safe.

You can run a decent sized house with a 10 KW generator. Modern standby generators use an automated transfer switch and have power loading modules. Basically what happens is when the power goes out, the automated transfer switch senses the power loss from the utility and kicks your standby generator on.

The big power drain is central air units which can either be taken out of the circuit when the generator kicks on or they can be cycled on and off depending on how many other electrical appliances are on in the house (that is what the power loading modules do).

A small cellar cooling unit like the Cellar pro 1800 uses 270 watts when the compressor is on (per their website). To start the unit may require 2 times that or a little more. Just the fan running is a mere 15 watts.

That is where the peak power rating of a generator becomes important. You may have a generator that can constantly run at 10 KW but its peak power under heavy load is 12kw. The peak power rating is what the generator can do for a brief period to get all your systems started back up.

That said, most company’s quote fuel usage of the generators when they are under half load - i.e running most of the time at 5kw for a 10 kw generator. My guess is you would not want to run a generator continuously near its ceiling.

In brief, (should not have buried the lead), unless you have a huge cooling unit that needs to drop the temp more than 25 degrees, 10 kw is plenty to run that and your home as well.

I’ve run the equivalent of 5 refrigerators, 2 gas furnaces, kitchen lights and outlets, well pump and tv with a 5500 watt gas generator. Could not start a microwave with that size generator, but all the other systems started up and ran with no problems for 4 days.

I’m guessing the intersection of people who want their wine cellar on a power backup and those who won’t be happy with a partial home generator with no AC units on it is substantial.

I priced a partial home generator from the same electrician I bought my whole house from. The partial was more expensive. Why? Labor. It was much more intensive to split out my panel and pick circuits for the partial. The whole house transfer switch is on the exterior of my home in-line with the main power. It took him 20 mins to hook it up.

You’d have to be seriously green or be earthquake prone to give up full house power with unlimited supply to do battery that has a short power supply, no ability for water heaters/AC and the worry that plugging Mr Coffee in is going to overload it all. Like I said before, natural gas partial generators aren’t even viable really as pricing has decreased on the hardware to a point where labor is a bigger factor than additional kWs.

Clint, I won’t lie, a 30 KW generator is very appealing.

The installation of the smaller generators I am talking about is the same - they are whole house generators, the transfer switch is located the same and the entire panel is powered. The only difference is an additional small box with contactors that will switch the a/c’s in or out of the circuit when the load is too heavy.

A 10kw generator can power an entire 100 amp service. You may not be able to run every light/appliance in the home at the same time, but its not like you won’t be able to turn on lights in some places in the home.

The power shedding modules will allow an Ac to run if the load isn’t too heavy in the rest of the house. They also cut off the a/c if you suddenly need more power to run something more important in the home. The a/c then supposedly comes back on when the more important appliance shuts off i.e. a hot water heater.

For those people who live in a cooler climate where a/c isn’t essential all year round, a smaller gen is fine. A 14kw will run a 200 amp service.

The real issue is for folks in more rural areas where there is no natural gas utility. In those scenarios, you have to have a separate storage tank - Propane, Diesel or gas.

If you use propane for home heating you can tie the generator into your tank. Some people have separate tanks just for the generator. If those tanks are only a few hundred gallons, a 30 kw generator may empty that tank in a few days.

For those who lose power in the dead of winter for a week or more (it happened to me, my buddy was out 28 days), you better have enough fuel on hand to last several weeks until the roads are clear enough to get a refuel (or have a big enough storage capacity to ride out the blackout).

Plus the price of propane may be triple or more of that of natural gas.

The price of #2 fuel oil is still pretty expensive to run a gen on - I’ve never seen a standby gen using it, but that does not mean much.

John Deere actually makes a device that allows farmers to use the Diesel Engine of the tractor as a generator. Pretty cool.

Howard, my guess is these batteries will better allow people who don’t want to connect a remote house to the grid a better ability to do so. If you buy the right appliances, use modern housing technologies, use geothermal heat pumps, etc… you can get pretty close now. The one problem is the storage of solar powered electricity. This would seem to help solve part of that problem, provided you don’t have too many cloudy days. Should get you easily through the night until the sun comes up the next day. Now, if you had a lot of days without sun, you might be in trouble.

James, this does not say it is 7 or 10 kW. It says it is 7 or 10 kWh. That is about $1 or a bit more of electricity, about the amount my car takes to charge every night (I have a Volt). Does not seem like that much. Probably could run a wine cellar or sump pump and a few other things during a power outage, but could it run a house for a day or two - unlikely.

Howard you’re correct.
Looking at some of the generator discussion, to clarify the battery provides either 7KWh or 10KWh of ENERGY storage, the maximum POWER out put is 3.3 kW peak, 2.0 kW continuous.
So if you had a load requiring a 10kW generator to run at 1/2 load (5kW) for two hours, it would use up all of the energy in one 10KWh battery.
Or with a peak output of 3.3 kW, 3 batteries would be required to have the same power output as a nominal 10 kW generator.

But they look pretty cool Howard. My guess is at that price you could get a little gas generator with a long extension cord that would do a better job with a wine cellar. Or just keep the cellar sealed up until the power comes back on.