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Old 18-11-2016, 16:02   #1
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Oh No, What Did I Do?

I am the new owner of a Lagoon 420 sailing cat equipped with a 2000 watt sinusoidal inverter.

Today I was running a load of wash which requires I run the house power through the inverter in order generate enough juice to run the washing machine, all on shore power.

I decided it was about time to run the generator as I had not been using it for a few weeks. I started the generator while the boat was switched to shore power and the circuits had been running through the inverter.

Then the shore power went out on the marina. The washer stopped. The inverter stopped. The washer has survived ok, I think. However I cannot get the lights to brighten on the guage that signals the inverter is working.

Two questions - is/would there be a fuse protecting my inverter, or did I possibly/probably fry the inverter with the generator? How might I diagnose/repair this?

Thanks in advance!

Rob
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Old 18-11-2016, 19:17   #2
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

I'm no help here. Sorry. Electricity not my strong point, but I hope you get this worked out. I'm trying to learn this stuff. I really would like to know how this works out. I'll be lurking to find out.
Good luck & best wishes for a positive outcome.
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Old 18-11-2016, 20:37   #3
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

I'm a little confused.....what does your inverter have to do with shore power?

Do you have an inverter that parallels with shore voltage to provide a boost when needed?

Was the generator online when marina shorepower went out? If so, what does this have to do with any of the above?
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Old 18-11-2016, 20:57   #4
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sailmonkey View Post
I'm a little confused.....what does your inverter have to do with shore power?

Do you have an inverter that parallels with shore voltage to provide a boost when needed?
Commonly a/c outlets all run off the inverter. Shore power goes into the inverter/charger. Not as efficient, but much more convenient.
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Old 18-11-2016, 21:15   #5
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

Not sure with your particular model - but usually there's a fuse for the shore power input, a fuse for the generator input. There might be also a battery-inverter power share fuse that protects the shore power from your system - based on your description, the shore power died and if there's a power-share fuse it probably tripped.
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Old 19-11-2016, 01:34   #6
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

The inverter would have been in sync with the shore power (they can often do that), and everything was happy....

Until you started the gen - which had no way to sync its phase with the shore power/inverter combo. Connecting 2 out of phase AC sources together can generate massive currents..... Odds are something has melted - hopefully just a fuse or a breaker - but be warned, the current generated could have been large enough to melt wiring all through the boat, and all the way down the dock to the marina switchboard.


Back when I was servicing aircraft alternators (115v 90KVA) the only way we could generate a large enough load was to use another of the same model, connected to the same drive. The setup was quite involved, to ensure they were exactly in phase - to generate the load we adjusted the timing of the second alt, within about 15 degrees or so of mismatch, we could generate up to 135KVA....


You probably should get a qualified electrician to test and repair any damage, being aware that some damage may be well hidden.
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Old 19-11-2016, 04:17   #7
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

Unless there is automatic ship/shore power switching you can start and stop the AC generator all you want. It will not connect to your AC system until you tell it to. If your boat has gone dark without shore power maybe your house batteries have discharged to a point the inverter will not power up. You may try starting your main engines to get the house batteries charged up to a point the inverter will come back online. Funny thing about inverters. When you need them the most they do not work...


Quote:
Originally Posted by psychfeld View Post
I am the new owner of a Lagoon 420 sailing cat equipped with a 2000 watt sinusoidal inverter.

Today I was running a load of wash which requires I run the house power through the inverter in order generate enough juice to run the washing machine, all on shore power.

I decided it was about time to run the generator as I had not been using it for a few weeks. I started the generator while the boat was switched to shore power and the circuits had been running through the inverter.

Then the shore power went out on the marina. The washer stopped. The inverter stopped. The washer has survived ok, I think. However I cannot get the lights to brighten on the guage that signals the inverter is working.

Two questions - is/would there be a fuse protecting my inverter, or did I possibly/probably fry the inverter with the generator? How might I diagnose/repair this?

Thanks in advance!

Rob
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Old 19-11-2016, 06:12   #8
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

Make and model of inverter?

Wiring diagram?
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Old 19-11-2016, 13:51   #9
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

check easy things first before calling electricians.
1) circuit breaker on dock pedestal - circuit breaker for the dock
2) fuses or circuit breaker on inverter charger (probably a small breaker given you have a modern sounding boat)
3) do you have a galvanic isolator?
4) look at the plugs on either end of shore power cord for burns.
5) can you check the voltage on the batteries with a system monitor or VOM?
6) do you have a breaker switch on the main panel to switch between shore power and generator? usually there are two switches that lock each other out.

good luck. you can find the problem. you might not be able to repair it, but you can probably find the problem.
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Old 19-11-2016, 16:04   #10
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

Quote:
Originally Posted by psychfeld View Post
I am the new owner of a Lagoon 420 sailing cat equipped with a 2000 watt sinusoidal inverter.

Today I was running a load of wash which requires I run the house power through the inverter in order generate enough juice to run the washing machine, all on shore power.

I decided it was about time to run the generator as I had not been using it for a few weeks. I started the generator while the boat was switched to shore power and the circuits had been running through the inverter.

Then the shore power went out on the marina. The washer stopped. The inverter stopped. The washer has survived ok, I think. However I cannot get the lights to brighten on the guage that signals the inverter is working.

Two questions - is/would there be a fuse protecting my inverter, or did I possibly/probably fry the inverter with the generator? How might I diagnose/repair this?

Thanks in advance!

Rob
I have mine switched so I cannot run both into the 240v mains circuit on the boat at same time ie the inverter cannot feed into the circuits at same time as shore power and in your case one more switch would also prevent generator and shore power at same time. I was also told it is not a good idea to run the engine at same time as being on shore power as can blow the alternator regulator. Relatively easy to isolate them all using mains rated 2 position plus off change over switches and not expensive or difficult.

Good luck

TwT
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Old 19-11-2016, 17:34   #11
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

I'm not seeing how starting a generator can impact the shore power connection. Unless there's some configuration I'm not familiar with, the loads on the boat (breaker panel, for example) should select between the generator OR shore power. Typically this is a manual switch, but it's possible to automate the switching.

My first assumption would be if there's any way to cross-connect the two, you have a serious problem that needs to be resolved before even thinking about fixing, much less powering up, anything.
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Old 19-11-2016, 18:01   #12
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

I recently bought a 5th wheel which has similar electrical supply modes, ie mains fed cable for campground power post connection and separate connection for a generator for non campsite power/power outage on campground. OK so far. The problem arises when shore power is restored whilst the generator is still running. This issue is dealt with on 5th wheel by the installation of an electronically controlled switchover panel which replaces the older manual switch gear, mentioned above. if you took out the marina, I suspect several things will have suffered overload/shortcircuit. what has it taken to get the marina back on line?What makes you think the washer is OK?

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Old 20-11-2016, 10:10   #13
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

I really doubt starring the generator killed your entire marina's shore power. What you may have done is tripped your main shore inlet breaker. Go look in the lockers near the inlet, or if not there, look in the aft state room lockers where Lagoon likes to hide their electrical switch gear.
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Old 20-11-2016, 14:27   #14
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

I would first check all circuitbreakers as has been suggested. If boat is wired correctly and contactors ect are working properly ( not coroded or jammed, modified or bypassed by previous owners) then no damage should have happened. I would suggest having an electrician check and explain how the wiring is supposed to work. If the system is wired such that feedback and damage can occurr it doesnt sound right to me (as it would not pass australian wiring rules that I am familiar with. )

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Old 20-11-2016, 19:23   #15
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Re: Oh No, What Did I Do?

Rob, I am slightly confused over your query. When you say "the shore power on the Marina went out" do you mean the supply from the Marina to your boat at the dock failed, or the lights went out in the Marina office? Having been responsible for the construction and electrical installation of data centres and switch centres around the world i can assure you that short circuits do not always activate the protective devices in time to prevent damage. It requires highly expensive electronics,for example the small unit for my trailer cost $2,500. If you want a simple test for your shore supply you can get a plug in tester from Home Depot for about $15 which you put into any wall socket. It will by way of a set of 3 lights tell you if you have a supply,if the phasing is correct and if the ground connection is good
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