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lapworth 04-25-2013 09:31 PM

Wire my Garage like a Boat?
I am building a detached garage with no electric. This makes it easier to get through permits. Any way when I finish with all the permits I was thinking what if I used solar to charge batteries. There is no problem having enough power to turn on the lights but how much do I need to run power tools. Would I need special batteries and inverters?

Kh3412 04-25-2013 09:41 PM

Re: Wire my Garage like a Boat?
Did. The same thing with my garage. But just one battery for led lights and a generator for tools. Got a generator for when the power goes out and exercise it when I use tools in the garage also out of the deal.

jimgo 04-25-2013 09:50 PM

Re: Wire my Garage like a Boat?
KH, that's a really neat idea!

mikel1 04-25-2013 10:43 PM

Re: Wire my Garage like a Boat?
How far is "detached"? Long extension cords . . . eliminate time trouble hassle $

ShoalFinder 04-26-2013 12:13 AM

Re: Wire my Garage like a Boat?
Nice workaround with the generator, but that's an awfully expensive way to run tools. But if you don't want to bury a cable for whatever reason, it's the best solution. I can't think of any other way than a generator to supply the kind of power you need for tools. It would take one heck of a battery bank and inverter to handle power tools of any real draw. The worst offender for power consumption will come from compressed air, so if you are going to use gasoline for electricity it's better to go all electric with your tools than to further waste your energy by using gasoline to make electricity and then use that electricity to compress air.

Electric is so cheap. I'd bury a 220 line and add a drop panel to the garage on the down-low but that's just me.

djaustralia 04-26-2013 04:06 AM

Re: Wire my Garage like a Boat?
I agree with shoalfinder, If your not covering extensive distance then I'd bury pvc pipe and run an extension cord to the garage. Council or builder will need to approve and sign off on the garage so attack it well after all these folk are happy and have left the site. A narrow trench half metre deep should do. you bury to conceal it 'cause it's kinda obvious with a power cord stretched from roof to roof. An overload switch in the garage to be safe and if you ever sell up or have to move then you can simply cut any plugs/fittings and pull the cord out of the pvc pipe. A good trick to connect to the house side is tap into the back of an unused power point wall mount ect. This way it's undetectable and maybe use a fake down pipe to run cord/pvc from house to ground. If an inspector ever needs to see inside the shed just disconnect any power boards and roll the cord up on the floor and throw more cords on top. Or run power into a cupboard in the garage so it can be concealed. Remember thing of this nature are only ever a problem if authorities see it !!!!

Minnewaska 04-26-2013 04:28 AM

Re: Wire my Garage like a Boat?
I can get as frustrated as the next guy with some of the idiocy of building codes and more likely, their enforcers. However, electrical codes are not usually the ones that bug me. They have standards for a good reason. I would not rig permanent extension cords.

My first plan would be to bite the bullet on the permits and run 110v power to code with breakers and ample service to work.

Alternatively, the suggestion for using a generator and having a backup power supply for the house might be attractive. No practical way to have enough batteries to run 110v power tools, but lighting would be fine, especially if you use LED.

lapworth 04-26-2013 07:00 AM

Re: Wire my Garage like a Boat?
Thanks guys I already have a generator and can run an extension cord less then 20 feet. I will probable go with what Kh did. I was just trying to go green.

mad_machine 04-26-2013 08:17 AM

Re: Wire my Garage like a Boat?
most powertools can be had in battery form these days. Most of them are very good (if expensive for the best) and you can keep the chargers either in the house or hooked up to your solar/battery pack in the garage.

Unless you need to run something that is a powerhog.. on those days, run an extension cord from the house

djaustralia 04-28-2013 08:39 PM

Re: Wire my Garage like a Boat?
If running cords from house to shed, you don't need to use an "extension cord', you can go buy some 3 core electrical cable from a hardware store and run that through PVC pipe. Use a fuse panel/circuit breaker in the garage and bobs you uncle. As for going green i bet you had a slab of concrete laid for the garage eh'? Concrete is possible the most un-eco friendly building product around. Using battery powered tools is good but the time and power used to charge them would be similar to using a powered tool for a quarter of the time. I don't know about you but when i use cordless tools they never last long enough to get to the end of the jod and require multiple recharges.

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