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Old 23-10-2015, 20:06   #31
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

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Originally Posted by jbinbi View Post
Appreciate the inputs.

Since I already have a charger, should I be looking only at inverter models, or what would be a good reason to get a combo charger/inverter model?

Also, do all these models sense when AC shore power is coming in?

Right now AC goes into the charger, i have switch on the AC panel for AC coming in and to turn on charger.
===

Typically the charger in an "inverter/charger" has more power (amps) than an ordinary boat charger. The reason is that they need to recharge a large house bank in a relatively short time (typical usage).

Virtually all of the inverter/chargers that I'm familiar with automatically sense when there is incoming AC power, and that in turn activates the transfer relay which transitions the unit from inverter mode to charger mode. Depending on options available and chosen settings, that sequence of events can vary somewhat, but generally the end state is more or less the same,
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Old 23-10-2015, 20:59   #32
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Re: which brand of inverter?

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Originally Posted by smac999 View Post
the new xantrax is garbage. at 330ah house bank you're not going to be running a big inverter. maybe 1000w-1500w (and not for very long). normally I have 600-800ah for a 2000 watt. what exactly are you trying to run?
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Old 23-10-2015, 21:11   #33
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

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Originally Posted by Dulcesuenos View Post
I hear the combo charger inverter units have alot of failures. I like keeping them separate. We have a xantrex. Prowatt sw2000. And like it alot.

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I too have been quite happy with a Prowatt sw2000 by Xantrex.

I installed it on the recommendation of a marine electrician that I respect very much.
It's been two years now without a hiccup. So far I've just used it for tools, but I'm on anchor full time, and use it quite a bit.
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Old 23-10-2015, 21:16   #34
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

I'm with the OP, I have a charger but just want a inverter. Also, like Dockhead, I want/have my boat wired to have everything powered by the inverter when away from the dock. I know I won't be able to use the inverter for large items like water heater or a air heater but a 2k Watt inverter can manage most everything else you can find in a house(kitchen appliances, hair dryer, small power tools, electronics).

I have been looking for a inverter as well. Tuned in.

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Old 23-10-2015, 23:40   #35
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

This is why I use inverter charger with no shore power ground attached to inverter.
Inverter can be used as a isolator if shore power is restricted to inverter only.
All electrical needs are powered by inverter I use 3kwatt pure sine wave zero passthru mode.

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Old 24-10-2015, 01:31   #36
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

First, think how you will use it.
Do you really want to run an inverter 24/7 just to charge devices? It eats 1-3 amps when idle!
Most devices are USB these days, so install a set of USB sockets in each cabin. I think i paid around 5 euro for each double-socket and they draw 5mA when not in use. Way more efficient!!
That way your guests can charge anything anytime without asking for inverter power.

For the inverter go for something big and pure sine. Nothing is more annoying than having an inverter too small for your tools or to far from sine wave to run your computer.

We have a sterling one and can't complain. It can handle short term loads much bigger than the rating and no device ever failed. They changed models a year or two ago and we picked up an old model for 1/3 the MSRP
Ours is wired into the AC system and if we want we can even run the water heater (sometimes when motoring on the engine that is not plumbed to the hot water tank). That was easier than anything else, with the inverter close to the batteries and the 220v panel. All it needed was a big rotary switch than can switch 3 wires at high loads. It re-uses the existing RCD safety switch and breakers.

We have a smallish house bank at 330Ah but we never use more than 70Ah on cold days with the forced air heater running all night or when sailing the night, and around 30Ah on normal nights at anchor. To me more important is that we have enough solar to fully recharge even on overcast days so we just need one night worth of energy. We have 560w solar.
Plus we have a b2b charger that does a real 3 stage charge of the house batteries when motoring. Even the biggest alternator doesn't help much if it just delivers a dumb 13.x volt minus wiring losses as the batteries never get fully charged.

We never missed a genset. The ony time we run an engine to supply electrical power is when wife & daughter want to use their hair dryer on cold days.
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Old 24-10-2015, 08:44   #37
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

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Originally Posted by dmalcol1 View Post
This is why I use inverter charger with no shore power ground attached to inverter.
Inverter can be used as a isolator if shore power is restricted to inverter only.
All electrical needs are powered by inverter I use 3kwatt pure sine wave zero passthru mode.

with no shore power ground attached to inverter.

On it's face, this sounds extremely dangerous, and at a minimum should be confirmed with the manufacturer.
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Old 24-10-2015, 09:14   #38
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

One of the features that Xantrex and others offer(ed) was a degree of flexibility in how the unit operation could be configured. Additionally, each boat, and owner, is essentially a prototype, therefore installation and usage will differ in minor or even major details.

In my situation, with an exiting 120V diesel generator and a house bank of 460 a/h, I approached the installation based on my boat's existing set-up, as well as my personal needs and habits.

We typically fire up the generator in the morning to recharge, run the coffee maker, and perhaps the microwave or toaster. Additionally, we usually run the vacuum, etc. A similar scene occurs in the evening if we are in a hot climate and the refrig has drawn down the voltage.

In between the generator usage periods, if I choose to use an electric drill or some other 120V device, I have dedicated receptacles in the boat solely for inverter operation. At all other times the inverter operation is normally inactive.

This arrangement works for me, in large part due to our schedules, and that 120V usage outside of the generator run times is (again, for me) really very rare. It also makes it less likely that I will inadvertently drain the house batteries.

A lot of this is due to life style and personal needs. We generally read at night. If we watched a lot of TV for example, or ran a small air conditioner, I perhaps would have made provision for the entire ship's 120V system to be powered through the inverter, battery capacity permitting.

Every system should of course reflect the user's requirements - needs as well as wants - and the practical limitations of their vessel.
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Old 24-10-2015, 12:28   #39
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

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Originally Posted by typhoon View Post
... by installing new capacitors ... it worked fine ...
& There are plenty of ... on eBay ...Regards
Cautionary comment, there were capacitor problems at the manufacturing level, like millions of them, that occurred (I believe) around 2000 and lasted a few years (sorry, specifics are hard to determine). I repair PCB and electronics generally, this was major for a while. So even now, be ware of electrolytic capacitors specifically (generally, the big ones), they will actually look bad, the end will bulge out of the softer material at the end, like a bad D cell battery. So if you are buying a unit 10 - 15 years old, be aware of this. As Typhoon suggested, caps are not too big a deal to replace, but be forewarned.

I am prompted to write only because of the reference to purchasing on eBay. All that said, I LOVE eBay, I'm a seller and a buyer, but I am aware when I buy, there is some % chance of a repair needed. But the cost savings is still compelling, ten cents on the dollar is not far off (in many cases). Just be sure to secure a "NO DOA" commitment from the seller, at least covering 30 days, since shipping takes a week, and then be sure you are in a position to test the unit (or a shop do it) before that warranty comittment expires.

BUT I am in no way "dissing' eBay, as my buying & selling on it had been my living for a couple of years, just be an aware buyer. I always re-certify and provide a full year warranty on anything I sell, as my value added. (But this isn't an add, I don't sell marine electronics, only factory stuff.)
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Old 24-10-2015, 14:46   #40
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rabbi View Post
First, think how you will use it.
Do you really want to run an inverter 24/7 just to charge devices? It eats 1-3 amps when idle!
Most devices are USB these days, so install a set of USB sockets in each cabin. I think i paid around 5 euro for each double-socket and they draw 5mA when not in use. Way more efficient!!
That way your guests can charge anything anytime without asking for inverter power.

For the inverter go for something big and pure sine. Nothing is more annoying than having an inverter too small for your tools or to far from sine wave to run your computer.

We have a sterling one and can't complain. It can handle short term loads much bigger than the rating and no device ever failed. They changed models a year or two ago and we picked up an old model for 1/3 the MSRP
Ours is wired into the AC system and if we want we can even run the water heater (sometimes when motoring on the engine that is not plumbed to the hot water tank). That was easier than anything else, with the inverter close to the batteries and the 220v panel. All it needed was a big rotary switch than can switch 3 wires at high loads. It re-uses the existing RCD safety switch and breakers.

We have a smallish house bank at 330Ah but we never use more than 70Ah on cold days with the forced air heater running all night or when sailing the night, and around 30Ah on normal nights at anchor. To me more important is that we have enough solar to fully recharge even on overcast days so we just need one night worth of energy. We have 560w solar.
Plus we have a b2b charger that does a real 3 stage charge of the house batteries when motoring. Even the biggest alternator doesn't help much if it just delivers a dumb 13.x volt minus wiring losses as the batteries never get fully charged.

We never missed a genset. The ony time we run an engine to supply electrical power is when wife & daughter want to use their hair dryer on cold days.
I don't need it to charge devices, I plan to use it in a similar regard as you. What side sterling unit do you have?



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Old 25-10-2015, 11:57   #41
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

When we bought our cat it had a Xantrex freedom 30 with a link 2000 and it worked just fine. We have a few voltage sensitive items and the modified sine wave wasn't working for us. After a lot of research I found Aims Power and they have a lot of marine grade inverters and inverter/chargers. We also have a 700ah lithium bank and a lot of chargers don't have settings for that. We settled on the Aims 4000 watt, 12v, 120v AC inverter/charger. It's been just over 4 months since the install and we are very happy with it. It has all the features of the other makers and technical support that even answers the phone when you call. Within the next 6 months they will have one designed for lithium. [8794 county road 91, Lillian Al ATTACH]111584[/ATTACH]


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Old 25-10-2015, 12:42   #42
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

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Prowatt sw2000. And like it alot.
Here, here! I installed one on my old boat about 4 years ago, works flawlessly. I bought another one early this year and tested it extensively for last six months, no problems so far. Xantrex Prosines have a lot of problems, not recommended, but Prowatt SW 2000 is very different. For the price of expensive Mastervolt or Victron or others you can buy two or three SW2000 as a backup.
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Old 25-10-2015, 13:47   #43
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

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Originally Posted by SailRedemption View Post
I don't need it to charge devices, I plan to use it in a similar regard as you
The comment about charging devices was for the OP. Really these USB charging sockets are excellent.

If I'm not mistaken we have a Sterling Pro Power S 1500 pure sine inverter. Now that I looked it up I realize that we got it for next to nothing. We paid 180 euro for a brand new item. Seems these went for around 900 euro normally.
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Old 25-10-2015, 13:53   #44
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

I hope for you the Prowatt 2000 keeps working.
Maybe the build quality has changed.
I purchased one about 3 years ago.
Defective out of the box. Fans ran continuously even with no load, and the display gave bogus gibberish.
I sent it back, second was even worse.
I peeked inside and was absolutely shocked with the soldering.
It looked like it had been done by a blind drunk with splashes everywhere and bad connections galore. Also WAY TOO MUCH solder in most places.

I got a full refund and purchased a different brand (Tiger Claw) rom eBay which is working great.
(BTW I looked inside that one too. Great construction)
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Old 25-10-2015, 14:40   #45
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Re: Which Brand of Inverter?

A unit that is a shorepower charger/inverter implies there is shorepower, in which case an inverter isn't going to be needed.


A 2000 watt inverter, feeding from a "reasonably well charged" battery at 12.4 volts, is going to draw 161 amps before any inefficiency losses, so more like 175 amps from the batteries.


Sometimes it pays to consider, what kind of cabling you need to have a zero voltage drop between the batteries and inverter. Or rather, how large a drop you will have carrying 175 amps to the inverter, however you wire it up.


It might not be unreasonable to look for a "12 volt" microwave oven in an RV supply house, along with a different coffeepot. (Well, if you have to have a NessPress or Keurig...(G)


The inverter is easy enough to find, but the feeding and care of it, and ensuring it gets enough power from a big enough battery bank and cables, that's the really expensive part of things.
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