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Old 18-09-2011, 14:42   #1
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Inverter Wiring

I have a Xantrex / Heart 2000 watt 100 amp inverter charger. I have used it only as a charger for the past two seasons, Great charger.

I want to connect the inverter to three selected outlets on my Beneteau OC400.

My plan is to wire the inverter output cable ( marine tinned triplex) directly to the upper side of three duplex outlets in the main salon. Of course I would break the tabs so that the upper outlets were on its own curcuit, seperated from the lower outlet plugs in each of the duplex recepticals.

I am reluctant to start cutting up the ship AC system and the wiring would not be nearly as easy as daisy chaining the top to three plugs directly to the inverter, completley isolated from the other ac system.

A couple of members of the Beneteau Owners group say do not do this,
I do not want to do anything stupid however I can not see how this is a problem as the inverter has its own curcuit breaker and would supply ac from the shore power or the inverter via the auto switch isolated from all other wiring.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated

Fletch
Camp David
Beneteau Oceanis 400
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Old 18-09-2011, 14:46   #2
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Re: Inverter Wiring

Well, my question is: WHY do you want to do this?

The inverter is setup to have (shore power) --> (inverter) --> (outlets)

it will pass shore power to the outlets when available and when you unplug it will start inverting and provide power to the outlets. So why complicate a fairly straightforward installation?
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Old 18-09-2011, 15:10   #3
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Re: Inverter Wiring

Not only that, the normal inverter wiring goes through panel circuity breakers which are rated for less than 30 amps, providing more protection for your outlets and the wires to them.
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Old 18-09-2011, 19:21   #4
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Re: Inverter Wiring

And the converse to donradcliffe's point is that if you wire your inverter directly to your outlets, the inverter can supply 30 amps AC whereas the outlets and their wiring is at best good for 20 amps. If you do this, put a 20 amp fuse in the wiring circuit near the inverter.
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Old 18-09-2011, 19:34   #5
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Re: Inverter Wiring

Splitting a duplex receptacle as you mention is doable but not good practice as anybody other than you may not know why there is or isn't power on one side and not the other.
- - I would suggest it would be better to install new duplex receptacles rated for the output of the inverter AC next to the existing outlets or wherever you feel you need the inverter power.
- - Or as djmarchand posts you can use standard receptacles but need to install a 20 amp c/b in the inverter output line.
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Old 18-09-2011, 19:51   #6
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Re: Inverter Wiring

I have done what you are describing. On my charter boat I have a 4 outlet box where 3 of the outlets are wired to shore power, each through their own breaker. The fourth outlet is wired to my 5K watt inverter. Each outlet has a designated item pluged into it. The system allows me to plug any single item into the inverter, but only one. The majority of the time it's a 16,500 btu airconditioner. Sometimes its the microwave. As others have mentioned, there is no breaker that will protect the item plugged into the inverter. Also, the entire system is bonded and grounded.

BTW, if you are wondering what it takes to drive a 16.5K btu AC unit. A 245 amp Leece-Neville alternator, an 8D battery, 5K watt inverter, and a bunch of 2/0 cable does a very nice job!

Ted
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Old 21-09-2011, 10:04   #7
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Re: Inverter Wiring

Quote:
Originally Posted by xymotic View Post
Well, my question is: WHY do you want to do this?

The inverter is setup to have (shore power) --> (inverter) --> (outlets)

it will pass shore power to the outlets when available and when you unplug it will start inverting and provide power to the outlets. So why complicate a fairly straightforward installation?
This is correct for this particular combined inverter/charger.

Why complicate things?

Either shorepower is there, or it's not. When it's not, the inverter powers the ship's A.C. circuits. When it is, the automatic transfer switch in the I/C switches to shorepower.

RTFM?

You have a great unit. I have an earlier Freedom 15, and it is very simple to wire it as suggested.
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Old 21-09-2011, 12:01   #8
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Re: Inverter Wiring

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Originally Posted by CampDavid View Post
I have a Xantrex / Heart 2000 watt 100 amp inverter charger. I have used it only as a charger for the past two seasons, Great charger.

My plan is to wire the inverter output cable ( marine tinned triplex) directly to the upper side of three duplex outlets in the main salon. Of course I would break the tabs so that the upper outlets were on its own curcuit, seperated from the lower outlet plugs in each of the duplex recepticals.


A couple of members of the Beneteau Owners group say do not do this,
I do not want to do anything stupid however I can not see how this is a problem as the inverter has its own curcuit breaker and would supply ac from the shore power or the inverter via the auto switch isolated from all other wiring.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated

Fletch
Camp David
Beneteau Oceanis 400
You don't want to do it because many mariners are putting in GFI circuit breakers. It may work as long as you don't connect your shore power to a GFI circuit.

My boat for 16 years had the Link 1000 OUTPUT neutral and ground wires connected to the shore power neutral and ground bus. When I plugged into the GFI breakers, the GFI would trip. After many hours I finally figured it out. Called Xantrax and they said it should not be wired with the inverter output neutral and ground wires connected to the shore power neutral and ground bus. So I rewired my boat to the recommendations of the installation manual of Xantrax.

Even with the input breaker of the inverter off, there is enough current from the inverter neutral or ground wires to trip GFI circuits.

Breaking the tabs to isolate the hot wire is alright. I don't see how you can isolate the neutral and ground wires on your existing outlets between the shore power and inverter.

It will be interesting to see if my zincs last longer than the 6 months which has been the norm.

Gordon
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Old 21-09-2011, 18:42   #9
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Re: Inverter Wiring

If you have a USA registered/documented boat with USA insurance you also don't want to do it. To pass a real Insurance Survey you will be noted to install GFCI's for the heads and possibly the Galley. GFCI's are enough trouble with a genset resulting in frequent trips of the circuit as mentioned by "gmau."
- - Splitting outlets is fine for the hot lead, but how are you going to deal with the neutral and ground part of the circuits? It is going to get real complicated.
- - The charger/inverter has an automatic switch over, as described by "xymotic" so wire the system as described in the Xantrex/Heart installation manual. Then you will be in compliance with the standards required by the insurance company.
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Old 21-09-2011, 18:59   #10
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Re: Inverter Wiring

what I did was to get a 3 pole DPDT switch rated for 20 amps. This is an on-off-on switch

Amazon sells them as does ebay.

the idea is this
your switching hot and neutral at the same time.
the center connections goes to the outlets
the side connections, one side goes to inverter output, the other side to shore - gen output.

the switch has 6 screw connections.

with the off center position, these two circuits are always isolated.
so flip up for inverter to outlets, down for shore-gen set to outlets.

for example 20 amp dpdt switch, 20 amp on-off-on
http://www.amazon.com/Toggle-Switch-.../dp/B001FRE1E8

but you dont want this one as no center off!
http://www.amazon.com/DPDT-Heavy-Dut...6653343&sr=1-2
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