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-   -   RCDs and switches for generator and inverter (http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/f14/rcds-and-switches-for-generator-and-inverter-200846.html)

terah 05-05-2018 12:53

RCDs and switches for generator and inverter
 
One of the survey recommendations on our new boat was to fit a ground fault detector to the output of the generator. Is there any reason not to fit an RCBO here instead of just an RCD?

The current wiring also has the inverter permanently on. The outputs then go through a relay and then to two power outlets. I haven't followed all the cables yet but I am guessing that the purpose of the relay is to only pass the output from the inverter to the outlets when there is no shorepower.

The inverter is only 500W so will be upgrading it to ~2000W. I can't get my head round how this should be protected though. Should there also be a RCD or RCBO on the inverter output? And should there be a circuit breaker on the inverter input? Is it usual for the inverter input to be direct from batteries and not through panel?

CharlieJ 06-05-2018 08:29

Re: RCDs and switches for generator and inverter
 
Quote:

One of the survey recommendations on our new boat was to fit a ground fault detector to the output of the generator. Is there any reason not to fit an RCBO here instead of just an RCD?
Since you are more or less in Europe :-), here is the applicable standard: ISO 13297-2012
8.2 The craft shall be provided with earth-leakage protection in all a.c. sources by one or more double-pole RCDs having a maximum nominal trip sensitivity of 30 mA and 100 ms maximum trip time.

Since an RCBO provides all of the functional protection of the RCD, fitting an RCBO makes perfect logic.

Quote:

Should there also be a RCD or RCBO on the inverter output?
Another AC source, another RCD/RCBO to stay in compliance with the ISO standard.

Quote:

And should there be a circuit breaker on the inverter input?
Yes. The installation manual will require it as well as ISO 13297-2012:
Quote:

7.2.1 Double-pole circuit breakers shall be installed in conductors to all supply circuits.
Quote:

Is it usual for the inverter input to be direct from batteries and not through panel?
Absolutely! A 2kW inverter/charger or straight inverter will require 2/0 to 4/0 cable (67mm^2 or 107mm^2) and, typically, a Class T fuse within a prescribed distance from the connection to the battery or battery B+ buss. I recommend installing a simple on/off switch in the B+ supply to the inverter.

Hope this helps.

terah 06-05-2018 15:09

Re: RCDs and switches for generator and inverter
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by CharlieJ (Post 2627280)
Since you are more or less in Europe :-),

Yes, at least for time time being!

Thanks for your comments, that really helps.

The existing 500W inverter is by the nav station. I suspect the wiring won't be enough for a 2000W inverter so plan to move it nearer to the batteries.

Is the existing relay (fm2ac/230) setup the right way to go? I intend to run the output to another outlet but otherwise keep the same functionality so only a couple of (marked) outlets will run off the inverter.

smac999 06-05-2018 17:47

Re: RCDs and switches for generator and inverter
 
the bigger inverters will likly have a built in pass through. and do it automaticly themsevles.

you'll have the 2000w inverter within 5' of the batteries. you'll be redoing the DC and AC wiring.

CharlieJ 07-05-2018 07:14

Re: RCDs and switches for generator and inverter
 
As smac99 said, all modern marine inverter/chargers have a pass through capability with an internal transfer relay so the legacy relay will not be needed with your new installation. RecommendVictron, Magnum or Mastervolt equipment.

terah 17-05-2018 01:05

Re: RCDs and switches for generator and inverter
 
We have shorepower and generator outputs wired to a transfer switch by the nav station, and the current inverter is just below that. If we're replacing the inverter with a larger passthrough one nearer the battery bank then presumably the AC in to the inverter should come directly from the shorepower/generator transfer switch? The AC output from the panel could then either go directly to the main panel, or to specific outlets? We would probably do the latter to avoid accidental high loads / powering the charger.

Our generator is a Dynamica Mini 40 which is advertised as 3.5kW. The manual lists the rating at 3600 rpm as 4.77kW so presumably this should be used for overcurrent protection sizing? That gives a theoretical max of 20.7 amps so do we size down slightly to 20A for the RCBO, or up to 25A?

terah 17-05-2018 03:43

Re: RCDs and switches for generator and inverter
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by terah (Post 2633813)
The AC output from the panel could then either go directly to the main panel

That should have read "The AC output from the inverter could then either go directly to the main panel"


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