Harbor Freight Inverter

Discussion in 'Campsite Electronics' started by Pnyglfr, Nov 14, 2011.

  1. Pnyglfr

    Pnyglfr New Member

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    I received a coupon for $139 from Harbor Freight 2000 watt inverter. Regular price was $223 but the coupon says that not good using marine battery. Anybody knows why?
     
  2. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    Are you talking about THIS?

    If so, I only see a notation that says "Not for marine use" which I don't think is the same thing as saying that you can't use it with a marine battery. I would interpret their warning as saying that you shouldn't use it while out in a boat on the water.

    However, using an inverter to power AC items will run your battery down (if the battery isn't a vehicle battery with the vehicle running) and this will happen very fast if those AC items have to generate heat. Examples would be things like microwaves, electric skillets, hair dryers, etc.
     
  3. dackley

    dackley 1999 Jayco Heritage Laurel with popout

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    ya that inverter is not going to be water proof ,or vibration proof both of which you need on a boat. that 2000 watt inverter is trouble waiting to happen, just the wireing to hook it to the truck battery is going to be large(possibly welding cable. I have a 700 watt in the cab of my truck to charge my dewalt drills, cell phone, computer,ect. when using one of these the truck has to be running, the inverter draws power off the battery and the alternator has to replace it, the alternator has to put out very high amps just to keep up the charge in the battery. which it wont due at idle. alternators have very low out put at idle . What are you going to use the inverter for, and when do you intend to use it. if you are going to try and use it when parked your asking for trouble.
     
  4. Pnyglfr

    Pnyglfr New Member

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    Thanks for clarification. I'm going to install it to my pup just incase we go camping without electric hookup.
     
  5. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    What do you want to run on it?
     
  6. Pnyglfr

    Pnyglfr New Member

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    I just wanted to be able to use the lights, radio or coffee maker.
     
  7. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    Your interior PUP lights are 12volt DC and will run directly off the PUP battery just fine without need for an inverter. The same is true for your furnace fan and water pump. I'd recommend getting a DC-powered radio instead of using an inverter to power an AC radio from a DC PUP battery. Finally, a coffee maker is one of those heat-generating things that will really suck a battery down in a major hurry if run on an inverter. There are a number of ways to make coffee without AC power. Coleman makes a drip coffee maker that works on the stove. There are also various devices like a french press, Melita system and so on to make coffee by heating water without electricity. Check THIS thread for more info. In addition to various appliances being power hogs, an inverter is not efficient. A lot of the power drawn from the PUP's battery is lost in the transition. It's better to forget about inverters unless you are using a small one in a vehicle to charge things while driving down the road.
     
  8. marcham

    marcham New Member

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    You must have a HUGE battery bank on your pup ... a typical coffee maker draws 1500 Watts for 10 mins.

    So for 10 mins, you're drawing 13A from the inverter @ 120VAC.

    Assuming it's got a pretty good circuitry, you may get 80% efficiency, so that 13A @ 120VAC is actually drawing about 160 Amps from your battery, for 10 minutes.

    Ideally, your battery capacity would be at least 600Ah (weight over 400lbs), or it may not be able to provide that much current for 10 minutes, that's about 6 golf cart batteries.

    Don't forget to fuse and wire everything properly, you will probably need a 300A fuse and #1 sized wire between the battery bank and the inverter. Ideally, keep the wiring between the inverter and the battery less than 6'.

    Notice that the owner's manual for that inverter shows a minimum 400Ah battery capacity, and seems to suggest a 3rd battery for a total of 600Ah capacity.

    http://manuals.harborfreight.com/manuals/95000-95999/95596.pdf


    If you want a smaller battery, than an AGM battery would be a good use in this scenario, as they handle large current draws better than flooded deep cycles, but then you'd need a charger capable of charging AGM batteries.
     

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