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    Inverter Installation-gctid390280

    I have reached the point where I am installing a 1000 watt inverter. I bought it at West Marine and it came with 6' of #6 cable/wire. I will be installing it approx 18' away from the house bank. Does anyone have an input as to what size wire/cable I need to use for a run that long?
    Tony, Cape Cod, MA
    Vice Commodore Bourne Yacht Club
    1994 Carver 390 Cockpit Motor Yacht
    454 Merc Cruisers inboards
    "HOLODECK"
    2014 10' hard bottomed Dink powered by 3.3HP Mariner 2 stroke
    www.bourneyachtclub.com

    #2
    Tony, I'd follow the manufacturer's specs, and perhaps check this against the wire sizing charts that are available on line.

    The inverter Pos cable will need a high amp fuse in the system.

    Again, the manufacturer's specs should state what amperage this should be.

    If you have a LINK system (or similar system), be sure that the inverter Neg also passes through the Shunt Resistor while the Neg current is making it's way back to the HLBB Neg post.

    Otherwise, the LINK won't track inverter use.

    .
    Rick E. Gresham, Oregon
    2850 Bounty Sedan Flybridge model
    Twin 280 HP 5.7's w/ Closed Cooling
    Volvo Penta DuoProp Drives
    Kohler 4 CZ Gen Set

    Comment


      #3
      I think the amperage draw of what you are going to use needs to be taken into consideration also.

      I have an 1100watt inverter that came with my boat that I am going to re-install, maybe.

      The previous owner installed it to power a magic chef 1.7 cubic foot refrigerator he put in the cabinet. He said it never worked because it always turned off. I think the wire he used was to small.

      I was planning on just yanking the fridge, making the cabinet useful again, and using ice chests, but then I though it would be nice not to have to go buy ice evry time I go out just to keep my sandwiches cold.

      So I tried finding info on the fridge online to figure out amperage, but I cant find anything.

      http://mcappliance.com/document/MCBR170BMD.pdf

      What the manual does say though, "not designed to be used with an inverter", "do not install in an RV".

      So, I thought maybe I can just throw it on deck behind my seat when I need it(I have a hardtop) but then it also says "not to be used in garage or outdoor enviroment".

      Comment


        #4
        green650 wrote:
        I think the amperage draw of what you are going to use needs to be taken into consideration also.

        I have an 1100watt inverter that came with my boat that I am going to re-install, maybe.

        The previous owner installed it to power a magic chef 1.7 cubic foot refrigerator he put in the cabinet. He said it never worked because it always turned off. I think the wire he used was to small.

        I was planning on just yanking the fridge, making the cabinet useful again, and using ice chests, but then I though it would be nice not to have to go buy ice evry time I go out just to keep my sandwiches cold.

        So I tried finding info on the fridge online to figure out amperage, but I cant find anything.

        http://mcappliance.com/document/MCBR170BMD.pdf

        What the manual does say though, "not designed to be used with an inverter", "do not install in an RV".

        So, I thought maybe I can just throw it on deck behind my seat when I need it(I have a hardtop) but then it also says "not to be used in garage or outdoor enviroment".
        Regardless of how much current is being used, the current needs to be below or at the maximum continuous load stated in the manufacturer's specs. Also, the wire size chart provided by the manufacturer will specify the appropriate cable thickness for the use. My tendencies would cause me to use cable one size thicker than manufacturer recommendations, but this is due to my own neurosis.

        Comment


          #5
          I wouldn't call it neurosis but knowledge..... The wire load is calculated based on a certain max temperature which is surprisingly high and you have to take into account that your ambient temperature may be higher than they assumed.

          What you also have to keep in mind is the length of the cable as the voltage will drop under power as longer you make it. This also causes more heat generated in the cable. The only rule always valid is that it can't be to thick.

          AWG 6 on a 1kW inverter for 6ft looks like being at the edge to me. The manufacturer will just go with the ratings as a #4 wire would have been more expensive.

          You want to install the inverter as close as possible to the battery. The losses on 12V are a lot higher than the 120V ones. If the input voltage to the inverter drops it will draw more current to provide the required output voltage at the given load.

          The PO of our meanwhile sold conversion van had an inverter installed in the trunk of the van. Never worked right. I took the inverter out, put #4 wires on it and installed it in the passenger bay directly at the firewall. Then the 120V cables to the rear. It worked perfectly for 8 years until we traded the van in.

          Comment


            #6
            That's a VERY LONG run for that much current (up to 100 amps at full load). You'll need at least #2 according to this, maybe thicker for the distance:

            http://www.powerstream.com/Wire_Size.htm

            Comment


              #7
              tonyiiiafl wrote:
              I have reached the point where I am installing a 1000 watt inverter. I bought it at West Marine and it came with 6' of #6 cable/wire. I will be installing it approx 18' away from the house bank. Does anyone have an input as to what size wire/cable I need to use for a run that long?
              Swampnut, I think that's way to long from the battery, the manual will confirm this. Try to get it within 4ft if you can. A very real problem if you cheat here is the voltage drop you're appliances will see. For example, a Tassimo machine will malfunction if it sees too much of a voltage drop.

              Gary

              Comment


                #8
                The output is regulated and the inverter will still produce normal voltage. The danger is that with low input you can fry the inverter, have it shut down, or simply waste a lot of excess power.

                Comment


                  #9
                  kjs wrote:


                  You want to install the inverter as close as possible to the battery. The losses on 12V are a lot higher than the 120V ones. If the input voltage to the inverter drops it will draw more current to provide the required output voltage at the given load.

                  The PO of our meanwhile sold conversion van had an inverter installed in the trunk of the van. Never worked right. I took the inverter out, put #4 wires on it and installed it in the passenger bay directly at the firewall. Then the 120V cables to the rear. It worked perfectly for 8 years until we traded the van in.
                  Thats what I was leaning towards. Moving it towards the transom, right above the batterys.

                  Now, run a normal extnsion cord of the approriate length to the location needed?

                  Or receptacles where needed and hard wire to inverter?

                  I haven't checked yet if my inverter has hardwire capability or just outlets.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    I could place the inverter in the aft cabin, with a 6 or 8' run. However, not easily accessible and also not much air flow to keep cool. I was mounting it above the sink on the overhead cabinet. Then going to run the cables back to the house bank, with a 50 amp fuse. My marina suggested that I use 2/0 battery cable. As for running appliances, it will only have light loads, so the 1000 watt is over kill. I was going to use it for the TV on the hook, a fan or two and also the Keurig single cup coffee maker for two cups in the morning. Here is the product in the West Marine Catalog:There are three outlets on it and no reccommendations on the size cable or run to use.

                    http://www.westmarine.com/webapp/wcs...cid=2012Annual

                    Yes, it would be cheaper to install in the aft cabin, but also a pain to access it, whereas above the sink on the side of the cabinet is very handy.
                    Tony, Cape Cod, MA
                    Vice Commodore Bourne Yacht Club
                    1994 Carver 390 Cockpit Motor Yacht
                    454 Merc Cruisers inboards
                    "HOLODECK"
                    2014 10' hard bottomed Dink powered by 3.3HP Mariner 2 stroke
                    www.bourneyachtclub.com

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Tony, just a few thoughts for you;

                      The inverter DC side will fair better if the cable run can be kept shorter.

                      The AC voltage is better at the longer runs without line loss.

                      Could you mount the inverter closer to the HLBB, and then run several AC circuits to the desired locations?

                      The On/Off switching function could be extended by a person with the know-how and skills (pretty simple I believe).

                      The new On/Off switch could then be remotely located to a more convenient area.

                      I suppose that this new switch could be illuminated to show when the inverter is powered up.

                      I'd be willing to bet that with the face place removed, the rear of the On/Off switch can be accessed and replaced with a circuit that would route to the new remote switch location.

                      Attached files [img]/media/kunena/attachments/vb/694161=28608-Tony Inverter.jpg[/img]
                      Rick E. Gresham, Oregon
                      2850 Bounty Sedan Flybridge model
                      Twin 280 HP 5.7's w/ Closed Cooling
                      Volvo Penta DuoProp Drives
                      Kohler 4 CZ Gen Set

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Inverters have a low voltage shut off which, very basically, protects the inverter from damage.

                        Lets say, for illustrative purposes, that it is 12.0 volts.

                        Noew a bit of number crunching. Lets use 600 wats (for ease of math) which is roughly 60 amps on the DC side.

                        .6 Volts @60 amps is ..01 ohms. This means that if the TOTAL wiring drop @ 60 amps exceeds .6V the unit shuts down. And, this drop can shut it down if its for a small fraction of a second.

                        So, instead of basing wire size on heat disipation, base it on voltage drop.

                        18/ away? Why?

                        Ypou can locate the inverter closer to the battery, and lengthen the 110V side wiring, as its only 6 amps. An ordinary extension cord will work.

                        Battteries: for 1000 watts, you are going to need a substantial battery bank
                        Captharv 2001 2452
                        "When the draft of your boat exceeds the depth of water, you are aground"

                        Comment


                          #13
                          I've never seen an inverter with a 12v cutoff. In fact I've run mine at just over 10v without an issue.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Rick,

                            That is what I was thinking of doing. I will most likely locate it in the aft cabin and run 12/3 wire to an outlet that is in a convenient place, with a duplex outlet. I will place a mal plug end on it and plug into the inverter. As stated, it will be used seldom, only when on the hook for the TV and the Keurig for morning coffee. I was also thinking about extending the on/off switch. It does look pretty easy as you mentioned.

                            QUOTE=2850Bounty;694161]Tony, just a few thoughts for you;

                            The inverter DC side will fair better if the cable run can be kept shorter.

                            The AC voltage is better at the longer runs without line loss.

                            Could you mount the inverter closer to the HLBB, and then run several AC circuits to the desired locations?

                            The On/Off switching function could be extended by a person with the know-how and skills (pretty simple I believe).

                            The new On/Off switch could then be remotely located to a more convenient area.

                            I suppose that this new switch could be illuminated to show when the inverter is powered up.

                            I'd be willing to bet that with the face place removed, the rear of the On/Off switch can be accessed and replaced with a circuit that would route to the new remote switch location.[/QUOTE]
                            Tony, Cape Cod, MA
                            Vice Commodore Bourne Yacht Club
                            1994 Carver 390 Cockpit Motor Yacht
                            454 Merc Cruisers inboards
                            "HOLODECK"
                            2014 10' hard bottomed Dink powered by 3.3HP Mariner 2 stroke
                            www.bourneyachtclub.com

                            Comment


                              #15
                              If you want a good laugh (at my expense) scan my thread on inverter installation. This was to run a fridge oddly enough. http://www.baylinerownersclub.org/fo...light=inverter

                              I tried installing an 1100W inverter miles away from the battery simply because there was nowhere to tidily fit the inverter in a dry place in the back end of a 2452.

                              I soon found that DC wires need to be incredibly thick (and because of the marine environment expensive) to avoid the 2 volts drop that causes the inverter to trip-out. Mine tripped out exactly at 10.2v. I could see that on my DVM. Maybe one of the tricks is get an inverter that is less sensitive to volt drop.

                              As I see it the best way is to install the inverter very near to the batteries and carry the ac the long distances. The issues are then with switching and corrossion of the inverter. I have yet to do this as I sort of ran out of enthusiasm. I'll get round to it soon (ish).

                              I hope this helps.

                              TerryW
                              Terry (Retired Diving Instructor and Part Time IT Consultant)
                              1998 Bayliner 2452. 5.7l V8 - Edelbrock 1409 4bbl - Alpha1Gen2 - Solent UK.
                              MMSI 235061726

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