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Old 10-08-2014, 17:24   #1
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Inverter Dying?

My Xantrax 1000 watt inverter seems to be dying. As soon as a few small loads are on.... it shows a low voltage signal and apparently does not produce any AC current. Works for a small load like a cell phone charger but not for a lap top.

I suspect it's something that can't be easily / economically fixed and it's time to replace it.

Has anyone else experienced this sort of behavior from a Xantrax inverter?

Any replacement suggestions? I want to keep it to below 2KW?
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Old 10-08-2014, 17:34   #2
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Re: Inverter Dying?

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Originally Posted by Sandero View Post
My Xantrax 1000 watt inverter seems to be dying. As soon as a few small loads are on.... it shows a low voltage signal and apparently does not produce any AC current. Works for a small load like a cell phone charger but not for a lap top.

I suspect it's something that can't be easily / economically fixed and it's time to replace it.

Has anyone else experienced this sort of behavior from a Xantrax inverter?

Any replacement suggestions? I want to keep it to below 2KW?
Insufficient info. What is the voltage drop to the inverter input? What is feed voltage to inverter? What makes you think it's an inverter problem?
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Old 10-08-2014, 17:41   #3
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Re: Inverter Dying?

You mention cell phones and laptops. Is there a reason you can't ditch the inverter all together and get a DC charger for phone and laptop?
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Old 10-08-2014, 17:43   #4
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Yes test the voltage where the leads connect to the inverter. this will tell you whether it's the inverter or power supply.
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Old 10-08-2014, 18:18   #5
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Re: Inverter Dying?

I used the inverter for more robust AC loads...high intensity work light, power tools for examples, but for cell phones the DC is fine.
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Old 10-08-2014, 18:20   #6
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Re: Inverter Dying?

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Insufficient info. What is the voltage drop to the inverter input? What is feed voltage to inverter? What makes you think it's an inverter problem?
Link Monitor reports 12.8 or even higher voltage when the engine is running. The unit has worked fine for years and so the behavior is new... and I don't think there is a low voltage condition. The unit will initially show 12.8 or more and when the loads are applied its monitor drops to 12.2 or so.
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Old 10-08-2014, 19:24   #7
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Re: Inverter Dying?

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Link Monitor reports 12.8 or even higher voltage when the engine is running. The unit has worked fine for years and so the behavior is new... and I don't think there is a low voltage condition. The unit will initially show 12.8 or more and when the loads are applied its monitor drops to 12.2 or so.
Don't be misled by the gadgets. The Link monitors battery voltage, not what the inverter may be seeing.

Additionally, if the engine is running, the Link will measure alternator voltage, not battery resting voltage thereby giving you another misleading voltage reading.

I know the Link and inverter are both connected to the battery bank, however, they are wired independently. You may have a bad connection or voltage drop at the inverter feed.

Check voltage AT the inverter input. Check voltage at bank to determine voltage drop.

Only if everything above checks out can you assume you have an inverter problem.
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Old 11-08-2014, 11:47   #8
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Re: Inverter Dying?

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Don't be misled by the gadgets. The Link monitors battery voltage, not what the inverter may be seeing.

Additionally, if the engine is running, the Link will measure alternator voltage, not battery resting voltage thereby giving you another misleading voltage reading.

I know the Link and inverter are both connected to the battery bank, however, they are wired independently. You may have a bad connection or voltage drop at the inverter feed.

Check voltage AT the inverter input. Check voltage at bank to determine voltage drop.

Only if everything above checks out can you assume you have an inverter problem.
Thank you for the advice. All the wiring is rather new and I seriously doubt a voltage drop from wires or connectors.
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Old 11-08-2014, 15:56   #9
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Re: Inverter Dying?

If you are sure it is the inverter (you can just drag it to another boat and test it there) then you can:

- open it,
- clean it,
- smell it (yes),

If anything looks or smells like burning, replace this part.

The problems often becomes evident once you are looking at an open unit.

Sometimes accumulation of years of dust and dirt will quasi-short the circuit and just cleaning it very well may restore its functionality.

b.
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Old 11-08-2014, 16:17   #10
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Re: Inverter Dying?

"Thank you for the advice. All the wiring is rather new and I seriously doubt a voltage drop from wires or connectors."

You said it had been operational for some time, it only takes a few months for a poor connection to develop corrosion and resistance. Put a meter on the input of the inverter and check it under load. Inverters do not normally work a little bit (small loads) but fail completely or intermittently. On the other hand if you are looking for a reason to replace it then it could be on its way out. ( And I will pay the shipping if you would like to donate it to me.) Now if your battery voltage is dropping to near 12 volts when the inverter is under load I think it may be time for batteries. This is all conjecture and until you check voltages with a known good meter you are flying blind. I would bet the inverter is ok..... But?
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Old 11-08-2014, 16:43   #11
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Re: Inverter Dying?

Okay, I give up. Don't test anything. Just assume it's the inverter.
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Old 11-08-2014, 20:52   #12
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Okay, I give up. Don't test anything. Just assume it's the inverter.
+1 like yesterday
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Old 11-08-2014, 23:20   #13
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Re: Inverter Dying?

Sounds like a bad connection--could be faulty ground.
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Old 11-08-2014, 23:33   #14
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Re: Inverter Dying?

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Thank you for the advice. All the wiring is rather new and I seriously doubt a voltage drop from wires or connectors.
If a hired electrician gave that as a final answer he would be fired. This needs to be checked with a meter at the inverter when it is in use.

Also you posted "Link monitor reports 12.8 or even higher voltage when engine is running."

Either the Link is wrong or there is a large voltage drop somewhere. 12.8 is barely above the voltage of a fully charged battery that is not being charged. The lowest voltage with the engine running should be 13.2 approx. If the batteries are down much the charging voltage should be above 14 - typically 14.4.

In a world where there is only a bit over a volt between a fully charged and a dead battery accurate measurements are very important. Voltage drop can make a huge difference to performance.
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Old 12-08-2014, 09:03   #15
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Re: Inverter Dying?

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Thank you for the advice. All the wiring is rather new and I seriously doubt a voltage drop from wires or connectors.
If you rule out a wiring problem because the wiring is rather new, you may be buying a new inverter for no good reason. And, while installing the new inverter, you may accidentally fix the wiring problem that was causing you to think the original inverter was defective.

"Throwing parts" at a problem in an attempt to correct it is a very inefficient way of doing things. You need to check that the inverter is getting adequate power at the input terminals as a first step in troubleshooting. It's foolish to assume this.

Your wiring may be fine but your battery is failing. The inverter itself usually either works or it does not.
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