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small inverter for fridge and tv.


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My Teton came with a modified wave inverter on a sub-panel. Sub is powered thru a 20 amp breaker. All that is own it is tv area and refrigerator. We have the original 22 cf side by side Amana fridge. I am considering a separate small inverter for it. My system is 48v so looking at Cotek units. They have 48/1000 and 48/1500  units. Now I would want a transfer switch and Cotek is only 40 amp and Kisea makes a 15 and 20 amp unit. will the Kisea unit work with other units? Well just checking out the Cotek and it has a plug n for the transfer switch , so answered my own question. 

Edited by GlennWest
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Well after further checking, microwave, tv area in living room and bedroom plus refrigerator on sub panel. That why 2500 watt inverter was in here.  Think I just pull refrigerator line to the inverter. Should I set it up to transfer to shore power or just leave it on?

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  Glenn, do as you wish and even if it can "still "work" my advice would be to use a PSW Inverter to power those appliances instead of that MSW. Unless there's a specific reason why ?? I wouldn't use yet another (NON efficient) separate inverter to power the fridge, but use the PSW you already have assuming it has the capacity which it appears.  

  It depends on how you are configured, but If your Inverter is a pass through and has adequate capacity and can power your fridge you wouldn't need to mess with any other transfer to shore power as you asked. I view an inverter with sub panel for specific loads and transfer switch for small set ups but I thought you had more like a whole house system ???? (NO sub panels no transfer) in which case no need to use a sub panel and transfer BUT IM NOT SURE OF WHAT YOU HAVE SO TAKE THIS WITH A GRAIN OF SALT

  John T

 

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Oh, sorry for lack of info. No inverter presently. In later this year. Inverter getting has fairly big draw at low output. 44 watts. At higher outputs very efficient. This got me thinking of small low power draw inverter for fridge. They are several I can use. Cotek, Aims, Phoneix and lots of odd name Chinese units on Amazon. 

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Glenn, I can't help a lot here because I don't know your setup.  I think you are trying to save the 44 idle watts on the big inverter?   In operation how many hours a day will you have the big inverter disabled and only on the refrigerator?  I find we use our inverter for things other than the refrigerator except while sleeping.  Maybe 7 or 8 hours.  If you are like we are is that worth it?  Another thought is for our home I am planning on multiple parallel inverter/charge/MPPT units.  That not only provides redundancy but during light loads I can turn off some of the inverters  but still have some power.  Hope these ideas aren't just adding nonsense to your plans.

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1 minute ago, Randyretired said:

Glenn, I can't help a lot here because I don't know your setup.  I think you are trying to save the 44 idle watts on the big inverter?   In operation how many hours a day will you have the big inverter disabled and only on the refrigerator?  I find we use our inverter for things other than the refrigerator except while sleeping.  Maybe 7 or 8 hours.  If you are like we are is that worth it?  Another thought is for our home I am planning on multiple parallel inverter/charge/MPPT units.  That not only provides redundancy but during light loads I can turn off some of the inverters  but still have some power.  The mini split use will also impact the hours a bigger inverter may be needed. Hope these ideas aren't just adding nonsense to your plans.

 

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Small inverter for when traveling mainly. On long trips we have lost items in fridge. Going up to Tennessee we couldn't find an RV park so stayed at truck stop. Lost fridge items. My soon inverter/s would power it. And maybe it might not be worth the small unit for fridge. Trying to save some battery but I got a lot. 

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Glenn, In order to power the fridge on its own separate small inverter and relative to your transfer switch question above, here are a couple considerations:

 1) Use a Transfer Switch to power the fridge from EITHER the Battery/Inverter when dry camped or  shore power when available (NOT talking pass through Inverter here as I discussed above) 

  2)  Simply leave it on Battery/Inverter 24/7 (subject to battery capacity and whatever means to recharge) and allow your charger (Solar or Genset or Utility) to maintain the batteries HOWEVER that's double inefficiency, the Charger and Inverter both have losses.   

 I see it more as having adequate battery capacity (Inverter isn't the problem) so the fridge can run off Battery/Inverter when dry camped. Id prefer only one Inverter and it a PSW versus messing with two Inverters and a transfer switch etc BUT ITS YOUR CHOICE and I have no idea of your configuration so I cant really help. 

 John T

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I run a separate small inverter for my fridge when traveling.  It is a PSW 1200 KVA unit.  It also powers the two outlets on either side of the bed.  I have point of use small transfer switches in those two circuits to manage switching between the small inverter and other power sources automatically.  My big dual inverter system has a fairly high idle draw, so when we are boondocking, I will turn the big inverters off when we go to sleep and let the little inverter keep the fridge going.  I waist less power overnight this way.  When we travel, the big inverters get turned off as well.  I don’t like having all my electronics powered up when I go down the road.

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Posted (edited)

This is what I was thinking about also. Are you using the Phoneix unit that Victron sells? The only high draw item on my subpanel is the microwave. The other circuits is bedroom tv areas and living room entertainment area. Shouldn't be too hard to pull line back up to panel box.

Edited by GlennWest
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4 hours ago, GlennWest said:

Mine was existing from factory or dealer install

Probably why it was a cheaper MSW.  They still work while my preference would be a PSW and transfer switches aren't all that expensive if needed.........

John T

Edited by oldjohnt
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12 hours ago, GlennWest said:

Inverter quit inverting some time ago. Trashed it.

Maybe a blessing in disguise if it was a MSW ??   With the sub panel in place It won't be all that expensive or hard to re configure a new small inverter and transfer if/as required EASY PEASEY

You got this !!! Good luck

John T

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Decided to get the Phoneix 1200 watt 48v unit. I has the lowest battery draw of any small unit I have found. Considering the Kisae 20 amp auto transfer switch.

Edited by GlennWest
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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...
10 hours ago, GlennWest said:

My Victron Phoneix 48/1200 calls for 4mm2 DC wire and my goggle search states 12 awg is same. Seems small but should I go with this. 

It will be dependent on the distance between the inverter and the batteries.  1200 watts at 48 volts is 25 amps max.  12 gauge would be a bit small.  10 gauge should be fine if the distance is short.  A voltage drop calculator will tell you for sure.  I personally like to oversize my wire runs to inverters, so I may go up to 8 (or 6) gauge.  I keep 6 awg on hand so I would probably use that even though it would be overkill for the load.

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17 hours ago, GlennWest said:

My Victron Phoneix 48/1200 calls for 4mm2 DC wire and my goggle search states 12 awg is same. Seems small but should I go with this. 

You may, BUT I WOULD USE "AT LEAST" 40 AMP RATED WIRE..  However, still subject to the distance !!!!!!!!!  PS Sure 30 amp rated will still "work" 

Here is one among MANY Online Voltage Drop Calculators:

Voltage Drop Calculator

Line Voltage drop is a function of 1) Current 2) Distance 3) Wire size, which is a good reason to locate the Inverter close to the batteries. Due to the relative small cost increase if you use bigger than necessary wire since the Inverter and Batteries are often very close, I USE AT LEAST ONE SIZE LARGER.

The way I was taught when practicing per the NEC was to 1) Compute the Maximum Continuous Current   MCC  2) Size wire rated for at least 125% of the MCC  3) Compute the Line Voltage Drop and upgrade as necessary 4) Select an Overcurrent Protection Device to protect the chosen wire gauge.

  For example, if the MCC was actually 25 Amps ???? since that's although slightly over 80% of 30 Amps, I would use at least 40 Amp rated wire (80% of 40 = 32 Amps) PROVIDED the distance still didn't cause excess line voltage drop..

 NOTE this may be considered by some as OVER engineered since the full 25 amps may like NEVER be there,,,,,,,Even if so, 25 is barely greater than 24,,,,,,,,,BUT THATS HOW I WAS TAUGHT PER THE NEC AND THATS JUST ME  The FACT remains bigger wire = less voltage drop. Use whatever you please, even if smaller than I would use still works.

NOTE what many lay persons fail to understand is a wires rated ampacity depends on temperature, the jacketing or enclosure (and if so how many conductors in what size raceway), the insulation. This means the ampacity of a single conductor in free air IS GREATER THAN what it would be if jacketed. While 12 Gauge Romex is rated for 20 Amps, a 12 Gauge single conductor in free air has a greater ampacity.    IE if you use single conductors in free air heck 10 or 12 gauge (subject to actual MCC) might suffice ??? Consult NEC ampacity charts for single conductors in free air. 

 Nuff said, I'm long retired and believe this remains accurate today, but NO warranty, don't take my word for it consult the NEC and consult manufacturers recommendations !!!!!!!!!!!!! DO NOT void the warranty !!!!!!

 John T

Edited by oldjohnt
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