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Old 04-02-2019, 11:15 AM   #1
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ELCI Article

Don't know what ELCI is? Read the article. I didn't know there is a pigtail you can buy instead of tearing your electrical system apart.

https://waggonerguide.com/shore-powe...elci-problems/
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Old 04-02-2019, 11:21 AM   #2
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Installing an ELCI can be easy. Pull the wires from behind the inlet and install in the ELCI. Add new wires between the ELCI and the shore power inlet.


Took me 15-30 minutes.


No issues with numerous marinas fitted with new dock wiring
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Old 04-02-2019, 11:34 AM   #3
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Installing a isolation transformer will isolate your boat from the shore power system. This will solve ELCI issues, which often occure due to legacy inverter installations where the inverter grounds the neutral causing the ELCI to trip upon power up.

Here’s a discussion from my very recent installation.

https://www.liveaboard-boats.com/for...on-transformer
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Old 04-02-2019, 11:37 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alaskan Sea-Duction View Post
Don't know what ELCI is? Read the article. I didn't know there is a pigtail you can buy instead of tearing your electrical system apart.

https://waggonerguide.com/shore-powe...elci-problems/
ASD
How has your vessel done when plugged into newer dock electrical in AK? I had two issues, now resolved:
-- sub par inverter bypass switch.
-- some improper onboard 110 volt grounding, ok for old dock electrical but not acceptable for new GFIC code setups now appearing in WA, OR and AK.

If you want any pictures of what we did, I'll be on vessel next week. My expert did not feel a new ELCI was going to solve our issues. So far he's correct.
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Old 04-02-2019, 11:41 AM   #5
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Hopefully no one thought I was suggesting installing an ELCI will solve old problems easily...


I was just saying that installing one is not necessarily complicated or requires tearing apart a system.

If you have issues, tearing things apart maybe inevitable.
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Old 04-02-2019, 01:19 PM   #6
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What is the difference between a RCD & an ELCI?
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Old 04-02-2019, 03:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sunchaser View Post
ASD
How has your vessel done when plugged into newer dock electrical in AK? I had two issues, now resolved:
-- sub par inverter bypass switch.
-- some improper onboard 110 volt grounding, ok for old dock electrical but not acceptable for new GFIC code setups now appearing in WA, OR and AK.

If you want any pictures of what we did, I'll be on vessel next week. My expert did not feel a new ELCI was going to solve our issues. So far he's correct.
So far no issues in AK and BC. This may change. I did have issues last year in Hood River on the Columbia River. I solved the issue by slowly turning on the different AC systems.
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Old 04-02-2019, 07:46 PM   #8
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All,

Of course an ELCI will not resolve leakage issues but also installing a isolation transformer may not also. The ELCI is simply a two pole breaker installed on the AC input side that will trip if the current difference between the power and neutral leads is greater than a set amount (typically 30 - 100 ma ). An isolation transformer isolates the whole of the boats AC electrical system from the AC shore power by introducing a null transformer. If there is "leakage" the ELCI will detect it and open the breaker. With the isolation transformer by definition there will be no detectable leakage since the power and neutral lines to the transformer are in equilibrium. However depending on the installation there may still be significant leakage current on the boat and danger to those who might be swimming in close proximity. It resolves the issues of the boat plugging into the updated power pedastals of marinas but doesn't necessarily resolve issues of stray current being introduced into the water surrounding the vessel.

For vessels having issues with leakage current, I always recommend resolving the leakage current issues first then making a decision to install an isolation transformer. By the way there are many advantages to having the isolation transformer installed.
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Old 04-02-2019, 11:57 PM   #9
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I was able to correct the elci issue on my boat by adding a separate buss for the inverter powered 120v (refrigerator, outlets and microwave) and another for the shore power, powered circuits (battery charger, range, hot water tank, heaters, etc). I tested the system with a $20 contractors gfi that goes between an extension cord and an outlet and blows at 2mA. In my case I replaced the connectors with 30 amp twisters, but could just as well used adapters.
From what I understand, the inverters are ground faulted when not energized with 120v. When they become energized there is a very short period of time while the unit thinks about the change and opens the ground fault. Under the old rules the time for that action was less than the time the shore power system allowed. Under the new rules, there isn’t enough time if the neutral wires for the inverter aren’t separate from the other neutrals.
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