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Which inverter for 12V??

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  • Which inverter for 12V??

    I am looking at:

    Xantrex Pro SW1000 Sine Inverter $250-270
    Display Number Meter, 1 Double GFI outlet, 0.6amp draw

    Ramsond Sunray 1500 Sine Inverter $260
    Display Bar Meter, 3 15 Amp Outlets, 1 year warranty <1amp draw

    PowerBright APS1000-12 Sine Inverter $270-290
    LED indictators, 2 outlets, 1 year warranty.. <1amp draw

    I'd like to get as much WATTS out as I can and do this once.. I have a budget of like $275 on this..

    I'd prefer a SINE inverter..

    I noticed the SAMLEX models.. but the casings look like the PowerBrite ones..

    What do you folks recommend or would you say use 2 inverters??

    1 HI-OUTPUT Modified Sine and 1-300 Watt Pure Sine??
    Last edited by ywhic; May 4th, 2012, 4:38.
    Al Z.
    1160 watts PV, 30.86 & -104.792, MidNite Classic 150, Xantrex Pro SW 2000, TS 30 Transfer Switch

  • #2

    Re: Which inverter for 12V??

    Re: Which inverter for 12V??

    check out Cotek , they make some Samlex models
    100% Off Grid @ 51* 46' N lat 124* 44' W long

    New House system: coming - 2 arrays @ 2240W
    #1) CL150 & Epanel 12V PVs 4S @140 W , 24V C&D AT-15P AGM @ 950Ah, Linksys wet54g - WiFi bridge, Cotek ST1500W inverter, TBS Omni-charger 30a-24v, ,
    #2) CL150 12V PVs 4S@140W , 24V C&D AT-15P AGM @ 950Ah
    to ADD: E-Panel and inverter
    Honda Eu3000is,Eu1000is

    Guest cabin system: 3 - 70W panels to BS 2000e CC, with 2 - 100 ah 12v SAFT wet NiCd's , 600W TSW Inverter

    Comment


    • #3

      Re: Which inverter for 12V??

      Re: Which inverter for 12V??

      Originally posted by westbranch View Post
      check out Cotek , they make some Samlex models
      They have the similar item.. Dual GFI outlets.. its just one GFI outlet.. (and one rest button for both outlets)..

      I'd prefer at least 2 separate(d) outlets..

      The Samlex SSW-350-12A looks good.. (pic shows 2 outlets)..

      and the Samlex SSw-600-12A also..
      Al Z.
      1160 watts PV, 30.86 & -104.792, MidNite Classic 150, Xantrex Pro SW 2000, TS 30 Transfer Switch

      Comment


      • #4

        Re: Which inverter for 12V??

        Re: Which inverter for 12V??

        Maybe a Xantrex Pro SW600 Pure Sine $160 would be better, and then a normal modified sine larger wattage inverter for normal wiring??

        Maybe a Whislter Pro-1600W for $120... use that for non-essential devises.. and the pure sine Xantrex for computer and TV??

        Anyone have suggestions on which way to go?? or should I just stick with the Xantrex Pro SW1000 (Pure Sine)??
        (Or upgrade my order to the Ramsond 1500/3000 Pure Sine $260??)
        Al Z.
        1160 watts PV, 30.86 & -104.792, MidNite Classic 150, Xantrex Pro SW 2000, TS 30 Transfer Switch

        Comment


        • #5

          Re: Which inverter for 12V??

          Re: Which inverter for 12V??

          Suresine 300, true sine wave inverter. Very efficient, will surge to ~600 watts for a long time. Off grid the is seldom much use for a really large inverter.

          Tony
          Please note, being a moderator does not add any weight to my opinions 300 watts Siemens/BP panels,plus a Sun 90,, making ~400. ~30 amps into Rogue MPT-3024, 450 ah of Trojan T-105, Morningstar ts300 inverter, a Tri-Metric meter.a collection of antique generators, plus 2 Honda eu-1000i's (also a BS2512 IX controller) and assorted other stuff!

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          • #6

            Re: Which inverter for 12V??

            Re: Which inverter for 12V??

            Originally posted by icarus View Post
            Suresine 300, true sine wave inverter. Very efficient, will surge to ~600 watts for a long time. Off grid the is seldom much use for a really large inverter.

            Tony
            I understand.. but I have a 12x24 cabin that I need to have enough JUICE to get around it.. if needed..

            I am totally off grid by 8 miles.. so I need (I feel) some power to run maybe a small dorm fridge (on timer).. maybe a small 4500 BTU A/C for a few hours.. I plan on running CEL or CFL bulbs.. and only a laptop otherwise..
            Al Z.
            1160 watts PV, 30.86 & -104.792, MidNite Classic 150, Xantrex Pro SW 2000, TS 30 Transfer Switch

            Comment


            • #7

              Re: Which inverter for 12V??

              Re: Which inverter for 12V??

              Originally posted by ywhic View Post
              I understand.. but I have a 12x24 cabin that I need to have enough JUICE to get around it.. if needed..

              I am totally off grid by 8 miles.. so I need (I feel) some power to run maybe a small dorm fridge (on timer).. maybe a small 4500 BTU A/C for a few hours.. I plan on running CEL or CFL bulbs.. and only a laptop otherwise..
              Okay, I don't know what the size of the cabin has to do with the size of the inverter. Our cabin is 30 x 40 and the inverter output averages less than 200 Watts. The only reason I have a big inverter is because of the necessary water pumps; if everything comes on at once the surge demand is wicked.

              Small dorm 'frige and small A/C unit are both power-sucking monsters that will require far more system than you've got. They'd shut down even the largest inverter on your choice list.

              Comment


              • #8

                Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                How do the folks online start there 5000 BTU with a 2500 Watt inverter??

                I know the surge is like 1200 watts.. And I know it will kill the 'bank' quick..

                But if I can get a new low EER A/C started on LOW fan, then switch to LOW AIR.. thats all I would want.. and its like 550 watt once its running..

                I figured a large (and good quality with .6 amp draw) Xantrex SW Pro 1000 would be a good 1x & 1st choice..

                The Morningstar SureSine 300 is appealing and the price of $215 (or so) is great.. and it hooks right to 110V panel and such..

                I'd rather have EXCESS on-tap if needed though..

                Before I even try an A/C I will get a 440ah battery bank.. intially I will be at a 225ah bank..

                Another person suggested a $200 2500W 'stackable' and said they've use theirs for over a year thus far with 0 issues..

                I just want to do it once and correct..

                FWIW.. My cabin will become my fulltime home.. so its just not a weekend thing either..
                Al Z.
                1160 watts PV, 30.86 & -104.792, MidNite Classic 150, Xantrex Pro SW 2000, TS 30 Transfer Switch

                Comment


                • #9

                  Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                  Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                  Of the inverters mentioned I can only speak to the Xantrex, Samlex, and Morningstar as being good choices. I've never heard of the others, much less have any experience with them.

                  Different inverters have different surge characteristics, not just ratings. For instance the smaller Samlex units actually are not recommended for motors because they have basically zero surge capacity. Other inverters will have ratings 2X the run Wattage, but might be for very short period of time. In rare instances you may actually get the manufacturer to provide accurate info which may show a declining surge rate available over time.

                  I'd suggest you go with a quality small inverter, and save up your money. When it comes time you can add a second, larger inverter to run the refrigeration equipment when you can afford it. This second inverter can either be connected to the common (expanded) battery bank or possibly a whole new system constructed for high-current loads (preferably using 24 Volts instead of 12).

                  One thing about buying off-brand inverters: if it fails, will the company still be there to warrant and service it?

                  Comment


                  • #10

                    Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                    Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                    I vote for the Xantrex but only because I have the 2000 watt version of it and I like it. I don't have any experience with the other brands.
                    MidNite Classic 150, Outback Radian GS4048A on 200ah battery bank. Xantrex ProWatt SW 2000 on 136ah battery bank, Solarworld 255W x 1, 265W x 2, UL Solar 125W x 1, Morningstar Sunsaver SS-10L, Trimetric 2025A,

                    Comment


                    • #11

                      Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                      Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                      As mentioned by Icarus, the Morningstar TS 300 is an excellent inverter for all but really big loads. One of mine has been on 24/7 for about 4 years now, powering everything but my water pump, electric fry pan, microwave etc. For those larger loads I have a Xantrex Pure Sine 1800. If your DC supply is limited, like most of us have, then two different inverters are the way to go if you occasionally have huge, yes I said huge, loads like that air conditioner you mentioned. The TS-300 has only a small idle current draw compared to the big ones, thus the big ones are only ever on when there is actually an immediate need for it.
                      Icrus and Cariboocoot in particular, I know have extensive knowledge and experience in this area, and I've been using off grid solar etc for over 10 years, so we do have some idea of which we speak. But it's you're money, your decisions to make. Most of us have learned many things the hard way in our early of grid years. Good luck.
                      1900 watts PV, (1000 watts PV feeding MidNite Classic 150; 900 watts PV + 160 watts micro hydro both feeding into a single shared Morningstar TS-MPPT-60) ; Xantrex Pure Sine 1800/12 for heavy loads; Xantrex Pure Sine 1000/12 on 24/7 for everything else; six Rolls Surrette 2 volt L16 @ 12 volts.
                      Domestic hot water totally provided by the sun 8 months out of every year via thermal panel.

                      Comment


                      • #12

                        Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                        Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                        I think you had a 1500 watt inverter on your list and I've run a window unit on a 1400 watt inverter. My system to run and AC (my goal) was originally 1000 watt array feeding 4 golf cart batteries, with this, in Missouri we have sun with our heat and I could run the A/C for 3-4 hours at night, with it cycling on and off, and feel comfortable I wasn't drawing down my battery past 50%, with my other odds and ends. I could run it for a couple hurs once the battery reach float. I'm in a well insulated cabin 10x16 cabin with 6" walls, built in the shade in Missouri. I didn't see shade in your photo. So think ice box thick walls and a smaller room, even at 1000 watt array.

                        In a smaller battery bank, and mine was already too small, things work against you, the high drain runs the battery voltage down which means your drawing even more amperage for the same watts.

                        If you reread about my experiences, I had a similar 1400watt inverter, to what they are now selling 2500 watt version, and after about 1 year the fan went out. I do feel it was a good value for what I got, and it did run my AC. I may not have mentioned it but it also had a high voltage shut down at 30 volts so when I equalized it did shut down, not a big issue.

                        Also on a 1000 watt array, I shut down my fridge over the summer! To paraphrase Kevin Smith, "...No sin greater than central air" or a window shaker for my little place.
                        Home system- 20 - 200W Evergreen blems, 2 Classic Lites, E-Panel, 2 Prosine 1800 watt inverters, 800AH 24V forklift Batt, up and running 1 Classic Lite and 14 Suntech 185W in spare room.
                        Experience with Pulse/Trace PC250 Power Center, Original Rouge CC, 80-4/5watt 6v panels, Odds and extras,

                        Comment


                        • #13

                          Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                          Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                          Let me reiterate Shade made my AC possible. I live in a fairly modern Modular home, I turned on the AC a couple days ago about noon, when it was over 80 inside. I shut everything down here and when to my cabin, when I walked in about 4, outside temps near 90, it was in the low 70's. It was built in the shade. Modular is in the sun mostly.
                          Last edited by Cariboocoot; May 4th, 2012, 7:05. Reason: spelling as per request
                          Home system- 20 - 200W Evergreen blems, 2 Classic Lites, E-Panel, 2 Prosine 1800 watt inverters, 800AH 24V forklift Batt, up and running 1 Classic Lite and 14 Suntech 185W in spare room.
                          Experience with Pulse/Trace PC250 Power Center, Original Rouge CC, 80-4/5watt 6v panels, Odds and extras,

                          Comment


                          • #14

                            Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                            Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                            My plan was to run possibly an 5K A/C in the 1-3pm window of the day.. the hottest part..
                            The A/C rating is lets say 550watts AC continuos. for 2 hours.. which would equate to 55 amps per hour in AC land.. total of 110 AH being used (loosly)... The 1p-3p time frame would still allow my panels to get the afternoon sunlight before nightfall..

                            Plan includes 4 140watt panels @ 7.7 amps each... 12vx7.7ax4panels =369.6 watts per hour.. x 5 hour avg.. = 1848 watts per day..
                            FWIW.. during the spring (was just there 2 weeks ago) sun up was 7:30amp and set at like 6pm..

                            The bank would be 4 T105's @ 220ah, 2 in series then 2 pairings of those to get 12v.. 440ah..

                            This setup would use 110 (roughly) AH from the 440ah bank.. which = about 25.5% of the stored charge..

                            If I did the simple math right...??

                            Of course now I see another 220ah battery setup should be added as not to WIPE my battery away.. and bring it to 660ah..
                            Al Z.
                            1160 watts PV, 30.86 & -104.792, MidNite Classic 150, Xantrex Pro SW 2000, TS 30 Transfer Switch

                            Comment


                            • #15

                              Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                              Re: Which inverter for 12V??

                              550 Watts AC * 2 hours = 1100 Watt hours AC. Convert to DC @ 85% efficiency = 1294 Watt hours / 12 Volts = 108 Amp hours. This does not include the inverter's power consumption.
                              That's roughly 25% of your total battery bank, meaning it will be depleted in 2 hours without input from panels.
                              It will draw approximately 54 Amps DC while running, or about 12% discharge rate which is pretty high.
                              Your 560 Watt array will provide at best 290 Watts AC, or slightly better than half the demand for the air conditioning.

                              The start-up surge of the A/C could collapse the batteries (electrically) and/or cause the inverter to fault and shut down instantly.

                              This is so close to the operating edge that even if it does work it will cut the life of those batteries down by years (depending on how many days you run the air). None of that includes the draw of any other loads either.

                              Adding a third string of batteries to bring the total up to 660 Amp hours will definitely help, as it will reduce the discharge rate to approximately 8%. But your charge rate from those panels will drop to about 5%. Also, you must be very careful about wiring three parallel strings of batteries to keep the current flow even; it's bus bar time.

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