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Old 09-18-2019, 05:32 AM   #1
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Lightbulb Adding inverter

I'm adding a 2000 watt inverter without a charger already have one.


Was looking for one with built in transfer switch


Mariner TruePower for $500

Zantrex $550


any others worth a look or any issues with either one of these?
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Old 09-18-2019, 07:31 AM   #2
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Suggest you get a designated marine inverter with a proven track record. Whether Victron, Magnum, Outback etc. then add the charger portion. Whatever you get has to be compatible with today's GFCI dock wiring codes, more difficult than it may seem. Online about $1300 for a 2000 and $1600 for a 3000 watt unit.

Use your second charger for engine and genset, with a transfer switch to charge house bank in a pinch. What sizes are your house bank and existing charger?
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Old 09-18-2019, 07:46 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lipets View Post
I'm adding a 2000 watt inverter without a charger already have one.


Was looking for one with built in transfer switch


Mariner TruePower for $500

Zantrex $550


any others worth a look or any issues with either one of these?

I can't comment to either of these used on a boat. I have had good luck with Xantrex in RVs and solar sheds. None had the transfer switch.
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:13 AM   #4
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The ProMariner by Marinco is definitely has marine oriented parent company.


I have been impressed with their combi units and stand alone chargers.


True they may be a step down in bells and whistles, but their prices show it.


Service and tech support have been great the last couple of years...was dealing with them yesterday.
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Old 09-18-2019, 10:28 AM   #5
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The inverter must meet UL 458.
Part of that requirement is to bond neutral-ground when it is powered, e.g. inverting from the DC supply to AC. In that mode, the inverter is the source, so it requires a neutral to ground connection. That is typically accomplished with an internal relay. If you use a Harbor Freight or other el cheapo unit, it won't have that function, and you WILL have problems, and it can pose a safety issue. If the inverter is tied into the AC panel, you'll most certainly have problems connecting to a GFCI protected pedestal that meets the new electrical code requirements for marina wiring.

When installing the inverter, you must be meticulous in separating the neutrals, insuring that the neutral from every circuit powered by the inverter is connected to the inverter's output neutral. That includes LED pilot lights on the electrical panel!

What you save in purchasing a non-marine inverter can easily be blown on correcting the problems with a GFCI/ELCI shore power connection.
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Old 09-18-2019, 01:10 PM   #6
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We have a ProMariner 2000W PSW inverter/charger combi, seems to work OK. Has an auto transfer.

Our original charger is also an older ProMariner, still working fine.

I'd imagine their inverter-only models would work well enough. ProMariner and Sterling are (usually? always?) the same products, so you could compare their specs. Sometimes one or the other tech manual fills in some blanks...

Not sure what the relationship might be since Marinco acquired ProMariner...

ProMariner prices do usually seem a bit easier to swallow, but I also selected their inverter/charger because of our decent experience with the original charger.

OTOH, PM isn't without their cheesy side; the remote for our PSW unit is labeled QSW... and when I asked their tech said that saves them from having to carry separate properly labeled remotes...

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Old 09-18-2019, 02:37 PM   #7
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The ProMariner unit should be good. Are you confident that the loads you will be putting on it are a) in total, well within it's capacity and b) are OK running on a modified sine wave? Since it has auto transfer, I recommend creating a subpanel with the breakers for those loads on it as well as the supplied remote.
As noted follow the directions carefully!
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Old 09-18-2019, 06:15 PM   #8
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We installed a Samlex 3000 W inverter/charger- good stuff!
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Old 09-18-2019, 06:32 PM   #9
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I think it’s foolish to buy a modified sine wave inverter. If you know what’s in your future then maybe you can get away with it, all others should buy a pure sign wave inverter.
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:38 PM   #10
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I'm not looking msw only pure
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Old 09-18-2019, 10:41 PM   #11
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Just my 2 penn'orth as an electrical dumb head.
I thought I was being smart and bought a Modified Sine Wave inverter from China, obviously it was an el cheapo, it wasn't up to the job so I bought another larger one, same problem.
Then I did what I should have done in the first place, some proper research.
I bought a Victron which simply wouldn't even switch on, they replaced it, the replacement blew a fuse the moment I switched it on. When I opened it up I discovered it was a faulty connection, further investigation showed it was made in India ;-(
Fortunately I was able to sell them on and recover my money.
4 badly chosen inverters later through my own pig headed stupidity I'd learned my lesson that time spent on reconnaissance is never wasted.

If you're going to drive anything with a motor or heater, washing machine, drill etc you need to buy a Low frequency Pure Sine Wave inverter with a suitable capacity for your future needs.
Whatever marque you choose is up to you.
I hope my honesty helps someone else avoid my mistakes.
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Old 09-19-2019, 06:53 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caltexflanc View Post
The ProMariner unit should be good. Since it has auto transfer, I recommend creating a subpanel with the breakers for those loads on it as well as the supplied remote.

The way the AC circuits are installed they are already separate.


the high demand A/C units on their own breakers and the 110V on their own so don't need a sub panel I believe.


On the AC in do I splice into the incoming or out going side of the breaker, I asume the incoming shore/Gen so the transfer switch can trigger



How does the transfer relay have anything to do with or w/o a sub panel, please elaborate
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Old 09-23-2019, 11:27 AM   #13
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I installed a 1200W AIM pure sine wave inverter with auto transfer switch this past spring. Also has remote display and ability to turn unit off from that location. If memory serves me they also have a 2000W with built in auto transfer. Purchased from the Inverter store for under $250 for 1200W unit. So far working perfectly. Wanted it to power refrig and toaster oven rather than run gen, while transporting boat this past July from NY to Tampa
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Old 09-23-2019, 01:29 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lipets View Post
The way the AC circuits are installed they are already separate.


the high demand A/C units on their own breakers and the 110V on their own so don't need a sub panel I believe.


On the AC in do I splice into the incoming or out going side of the breaker, I asume the incoming shore/Gen so the transfer switch can trigger



How does the transfer relay have anything to do with or w/o a sub panel, please elaborate


You need to move the neutrals on every inverter-powered circuit so that they are connected to only the inverter’s neutral when the inverter is providing power to those circuits. The internal relay bonds the inverter’s output neutrals to ground, since in inverter mode, the inverter is the source, and will also provide a pass-thru connection to the shore neutral when it is not energized. This is part of what UL458 requires, as well as ABYC standards. ALL neutrals - think those little LED indicator lamps- those too.

If you don’t, it will work, but if you try to connect to a GFCI or ELCI protected shore pedestal, it can trip the shore main. That means you can take down an entire pier. You can make fast friends if you pull in at closing time and connect as the staff is making their escape with the key to the panel where the reset is located, and everyone is running A/C!

The GFI sees the neutral imbalance or connection to ground and promptly trips as designed. You typically cannot measure this leakage without a purpose built meter, they’re in the high hundreds and up.

If the process doesn’t make sense to you, then an ABYC certified electrician or corrosion tech can help insure that your proposed install will be functional AND safe. Lots easier to get it right at the git go than to try to DX a non-working system when you plug in to your first GFCI-protected shore supply!
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Old 09-23-2019, 01:51 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Maerin View Post
You need to move the neutrals on every inverter-powered circuit so that they are connected to only the inverter’s neutral when the inverter is providing power to those circuits. The internal relay bonds the inverter’s output neutrals to ground, since in inverter mode, the inverter is the source, and will also provide a pass-thru connection to the shore neutral when it is not energized. This is part of what UL458 requires, as well as ABYC standards. ALL neutrals - think those little LED indicator lamps- those too.

If you don’t, it will work, but if you try to connect to a GFCI or ELCI protected shore pedestal, it can trip the shore main. That means you can take down an entire pier. You can make fast friends if you pull in at closing time and connect as the staff is making their escape with the key to the panel where the reset is located, and everyone is running A/C!

The GFI sees the neutral imbalance or connection to ground and promptly trips as designed. You typically cannot measure this leakage without a purpose built meter, they’re in the high hundreds and up.

If the process doesn’t make sense to you, then an ABYC certified electrician or corrosion tech can help insure that your proposed install will be functional AND safe. Lots easier to get it right at the git go than to try to DX a non-working system when you plug in to your first GFCI-protected shore supply!
Excellent writeup!

Question- as I am running an isolation transformer, the above would not apply, as the neutral does not enter the boat, correct?
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Old 09-23-2019, 02:52 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pau Hana View Post
Excellent writeup!

Question- as I am running an isolation transformer, the above would not apply, as the neutral does not enter the boat, correct?
Peter, a suggestion or two;

Nothing the matter with having your inverter's ground set up as Maerin suggests. That way if your IT gets on the fritz (and they do) you are covered. My favorite guy for these things is Dan Hyde at Emerald Harbor Marine. Take a few minutes and pick his knowledge and hands on experience base.
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Old 09-23-2019, 04:50 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lipets View Post
The way the AC circuits are installed they are already separate.


the high demand A/C units on their own breakers and the 110V on their own so don't need a sub panel I believe.


On the AC in do I splice into the incoming or out going side of the breaker, I asume the incoming shore/Gen so the transfer switch can trigger



How does the transfer relay have anything to do with or w/o a sub panel, please elaborate
A picture of your panel would help me explain it to you better. I like that ProMariner much more than the Xantrex, many better features that are optional or not available on the "X" box. I suggest you read the manual for it. Are all your non-"high demand" items in total less than about 15 amps, by the way?
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Old 09-23-2019, 05:03 PM   #18
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Excellent writeup!

Question- as I am running an isolation transformer, the above would not apply, as the neutral does not enter the boat, correct?
You have a generator too, I take it?
Anyway your boat becomes it's own self contained electrical system, so still needs to be wired as Maerin describes. That's why I advocate a separate panel for the inverter loads, to, among other things, ensure this.
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Old 09-24-2019, 06:10 AM   #19
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I waiting on the 30amp diagram from Beneteau, they sent me the 50amp.


there are two shore plugs and the genn is tied into both


here's the 50amp if that helps


On this boat blue is neutral, tan is load and yellow/green is ground
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Old 09-26-2019, 01:37 PM   #20
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we have on both our boats Victron, great service and can't beat the performance. Also remotely configurable, on one boat it is programmed to use solar energy first , and below a preset SOC to let shore power help. I have received great service of Victron in the USA and in Europe.
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