NissanLeafCamper
Posts: 205
Joined: Fri May 22, 2015 1:46 pm
Delivery Date: 01 May 2013
Location: Los Angeles California

Re: Inverter for a small refrigerator for the leaf?

Sat Jun 06, 2015 6:19 pm

Hi Guys,

Thank you both I appreciate the input. We talk about being inexpensive, but I do wonder how far down the road each item will be? When we talk about an ice cooler we need to buy ice every so often to keep things cool. With the electric cooler it will be electricity, but there is a free charging station a couple of blocks from where I normally am parked. Then there is the whole 'no charge to charge' incentive going on right now (Granted I am not entirely sure if a lease is what I'd want but still an option).

So I wonder:

Cooler needs Ice which equals money
Propane stove needs gas which equals money

Electric Cooler and Induction cooker needs electricity (And an inverter to get it all started) but I am in a position where I might not have to pay much, or possibly any?, electricity.

This is something that I want to do until an electric van comes around so the electricity 'incentive' is still possible.

How much would buying ice and propane equal years down the road?

Price for a bag of a 10lb pound of ice appears to be between 2 to 4 dollars

Price for a propane tank seems to range between $5 to $8 dollars

From what I have read a bag of ice can last about 4 days in a good cooler. 365 days in a year. 365/4= 91 times ice bag must be bought. 91* 2 = 182 and 91*4= 364 That means I would pay between $182 to $364 dollars a year in ice.

The 16 Oz Propane bottle my Portable Stove uses (The Coleman brief case which is just so heavy) seems to let me cook about 7 times from what I spoke with my family. Let's say it can range between 7 - 10 cooking sessions. I will cook about 2 to 3 times a day. 2 if I eat out and 3 if I stick strictly to cooking my meals.

--- So 2 meals every day for 365 days (One Year) is equal to 730 cook 'outs' in a year If I can cook 7 times before needing to buy another tank that is 730/7= 104 propane tanks. 104 propane tanks can have a cost ranging between (5 per unit or 8 per unit) 104*5= $520 and aalso 104*8= $832

--- So 3 meals every day for 365 days is equal to 1095 cook 'outs' in a year. If I can cook 10 times before needing to buy another tank that is 1095/10 = 109 propane tanks. 109 Propane tanks can have a cost ranging from 109*5= $545 to $872


This gives us a cost range of $182 (Low End) to $364 (High End) in ice and $520 (Low End) and $872 (High End) in Propane per year.

Both figures combined respectively gives us $702 (Low End) and $1236 (High End yearly cost.

I am basically sticking with the leaf until an electric van comes out... which I think could be sometime in 2 to 3 years. Once I am in my van I will still be doing the same gig... hopefully.

702*3 years = $2106 (Low End) and $3708 (High End)

Cost for an induction cooker? $57 for a 1300w cooker in amazon.

Cooler
Compressor type: $1,045.00

http://www.amazon.com/fridge-marine-com ... B00T0BSRLE" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Non Compressor type: $71.99
http://www.amazon.com/Koolatron-P25-26- ... B0001MQ7EK" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Inverter

Modified Sine wave: $150
Pure sine wave: $574.46

http://www.amazon.com/Go-Power-GP-SW150 ... B00153EWLY" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

So if I were to keep it cheap I see the total for the electrics being about $300 USD and if I go Expensive It will be about $1,700 USD. Or just getting the pure sine wave and a cheap cooler being about $700? The electricity bit COULD be free. So from the numbers electric seems to be cheaper than propane/ice....

Thoughts? I'm horrible at math by the way :( so if I messed up then I'm sorry. Electric does seem to be so cheap though. Almost only 1.5K USD?

mbender
Posts: 824
Joined: Sun Apr 21, 2013 8:11 am
Delivery Date: 31 Aug 2014
Leaf Number: 309606
Location: The Great California Delta, and environs

Re: Inverter for a small refrigerator for the leaf?

Sat Jun 06, 2015 7:04 pm

Ok, even though I recommended ice and a cooler earlier, I'm going to reverse that advice. Aside from the expense, it can get messy and/or inconvenient dealing with the melted ice (i.e., water :lol:). I didn't realize that this would be such a 'full-time' endeavor.

So now, the choice boils down to electricity vs. propane. Hmm, tough call...

If you do go with propane -- stove and/or refrigerator (have you looked into this one?) -- I'd suggest using a small (1-gallon), refillable propane tank, rather than those disposable bottles. That would be friendlier on the environment and your pocketbook alike.

Something to keep in mind with propane is that you really want a lot of fresh air intake and nearly complete combustion (i.e., carbon monoxide-free exhaust) when it is burning, which might cause logistical problems or unnecessary 'anxiety'.

So maybe quiet, dependable, safer, and perhaps even "free" electric is the way to go, after all. Besides whose inner geek doesn't want to own and use a 12V Peltier refrigerator?! :)

ps. I just noticed that the refrigerator I linked to above can run on AC, DC, or propane. (!) So you might call that (one) a 'win-win-win', provided the price fits your budget and its other features meet your needs.

pps. Even though edits aren't noted if you do them before another post is added, I did edit this down several times, so it may not be what you remember having once read!
I think I just felt my paradigm shift.

2012 SL (One of the colors): 2-year lease, 2012+,
2015 S w/QC (A different color): 3-year lease, 2014+,
2017 SV (Same color as 2015 S): 3-year lease, 2017+, lower monthly than either above(!)

BrockWI
Posts: 786
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2014 6:28 am
Delivery Date: 28 Mar 2014
Leaf Number: 423875
Location: Green Bay, WI.
Contact: Website

Re: Inverter for a small refrigerator for the leaf?

Sun Jun 07, 2015 6:08 am

I would agree. If your going the 24x7 route then go with a compressor fridge over Peltier. The energy saving in the long run will be better and the compressor type are more consistent with the internal temperatures.

Personally I would still go with propane, I know it's a pain, but I would use a 20lb (or maybe 10lb or 6lb) tank with an adapter to the disposable tank. As far as how long they last, I have used our 16 oz small grill with a total burn time of at least 2 hours, so up that to 40 hours on a $20 fill on a 20lb tank. Having said that an inverter is smaller, safer, cleaner, but would require you to have the car in ready mode while using any significant load.

If you do go the inverter route I would strongly recommend the xantrex line
http://www.amazon.com/Xantrex-PROWatt-I ... ex+prosine" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I have had quite a few xantrex inverters and have never had an issue with any of them. I would up size any inverter for starting surge and you have to be very close to the battery for larger loads, remember a 1350w heating element will pull 120 amps at 11.5v, I would go with no smaller than #4 wire and no longer than 5 feet, up-size the wire for a longer run or add a deep cycle right at the inverter location.
3 kw solar pv - XW6048 - eight L16's
4 ton GSHP - 1 ton ASHP
2003 VW TDI 200k miles - 52 mpg lifetime
EVSE level 2 - Clipper Creek HSC-40
2013 S model with QC package Mar of 2013
lost first bar @ 72k
@90k miles - 54.71Ahr - 83.64SOH - 78.44Hx - 237GID

GRA
Posts: 10891
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 1:49 pm
Location: East side of San Francisco Bay

Re: Inverter for a small refrigerator for the leaf?

Sun Jun 07, 2015 4:49 pm

BrockWI wrote:I would agree. If your going the 24x7 route then go with a compressor fridge over Peltier. The energy saving in the long run will be better and the compressor type are more consistent with the internal temperatures.

Personally I would still go with propane, I know it's a pain, but I would use a 20lb (or maybe 10lb or 6lb) tank with an adapter to the disposable tank. As far as how long they last, I have used our 16 oz small grill with a total burn time of at least 2 hours, so up that to 40 hours on a $20 fill on a 20lb tank. Having said that an inverter is smaller, safer, cleaner, but would require you to have the car in ready mode while using any significant load.

If you do go the inverter route I would strongly recommend the xantrex line
http://www.amazon.com/Xantrex-PROWatt-I ... ex+prosine" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I have had quite a few xantrex inverters and have never had an issue with any of them. I would up size any inverter for starting surge and you have to be very close to the battery for larger loads, remember a 1350w heating element will pull 120 amps at 11.5v, I would go with no smaller than #4 wire and no longer than 5 feet, up-size the wire for a longer run or add a deep cycle right at the inverter location.

Given such frequent usage the numbers do slant more in favor of electric over ice. I concur with the use of a larger, refillable propane cylinder to keep costs down; they can usually be swapped at supermarkets, and refilled at many places. Some points; Propane refrigerators, unless they've improved a whole lot in the past ~20 years, will not freeze ice cream or make ice, and the insulation on many of the old AC-DC/propane units was pretty feeble, so even if running on electricity I'd be hesitant about the power usage and coldness. The newer ones may be a lot better, but without having the specs and some real-world data (check Home Power magazine, http://wwwhomepower.com or the latest Reals Goods Solar Living Sourcebook and see if they've run any tests of the units you're considering), I'm hesitant to recommend them if that's a requirement.

On the inverter, I'd probably recommend 2 gauge; it's been awhile since I used to sell Trace inverters (what XantreX used to be before all the engineers decamped to Outback), but my memory says that a 2kW continuous inverter would use that, and you don't want to undersize your wire between battery and inverter, especially when dealing with start-up surge loads like a refrigerator compressor, which can suck the voltage down to the inverter's low voltage cut-off point.

Whatever you do, I recommend that you spend a little more time educating yourself, via Home Power and the Sourcebook (http://realgoods.com/solar-living-sourc ... th-edition" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;) before you buy. The more you understand, the better decisions you'll make.
Guy [I have lots of experience designing/selling off-grid AE systems, some using EVs but don't own one. Local trips are by foot, bike and/or rapid transit].

The 'best' is the enemy of 'good enough'. Copper shot, not Silver bullets.

mbender
Posts: 824
Joined: Sun Apr 21, 2013 8:11 am
Delivery Date: 31 Aug 2014
Leaf Number: 309606
Location: The Great California Delta, and environs

Re: Inverter for a small refrigerator for the leaf?

Mon Jun 08, 2015 12:11 am

mbender wrote:Ok, even though I recommended ice and a cooler earlier, I'm going to reverse that advice.
GRA wrote:Given such frequent usage the numbers do slant more in favor of electric over ice.
Please let the record show that we are now, both, anti-ICE ;-) ...
though not necessarily "anti-freeze" :) .
I think I just felt my paradigm shift.

2012 SL (One of the colors): 2-year lease, 2012+,
2015 S w/QC (A different color): 3-year lease, 2014+,
2017 SV (Same color as 2015 S): 3-year lease, 2017+, lower monthly than either above(!)

User avatar
JimSouCal
Posts: 860
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 12:54 pm

Re: Inverter for a small refrigerator for the leaf?

Mon Jun 08, 2015 9:39 am

mbender wrote:
mbender wrote:Ok, even though I recommended ice and a cooler earlier, I'm going to reverse that advice.
GRA wrote:Given such frequent usage the numbers do slant more in favor of electric over ice.
Please let the record show that we are now, both, anti-ICE ;-) ...
though not necessarily "anti-freeze" :) .
Doesn't the whole price model change if you make your ice at home in the freezer and use reusable "blue ice"? I am thinking maybe tow a small trailer with the whole set up behind... ;)

GRA
Posts: 10891
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 1:49 pm
Location: East side of San Francisco Bay

Re: Inverter for a small refrigerator for the leaf?

Mon Jun 08, 2015 2:09 pm

GRA wrote:On the inverter, I'd probably recommend 2 gauge; it's been awhile since I used to sell Trace inverters (what XantreX used to be before all the engineers decamped to Outback), but my memory says that a 2kW continuous inverter would use that, and you don't want to undersize your wire between battery and inverter, especially when dealing with start-up surge loads like a refrigerator compressor, which can suck the voltage down to the inverter's low voltage cut-off point.
Man, talk about a brain fart. Ransacking my memory a bit more, the typical recommended wire size for a 2kW, 12 Volt inverter is 4/0, not 2 gauge. Kind of hard to wrestle in a car.

For just running a fridge/freezer, doing a bit of looking around something like this, running direct off 12 Volts looks like a better deal to me (although maybe bigger than you want or need now): http://www.adventureparents.com/blog/da ... -or-camper" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Here's one that might suit your needs: http://www.bigfrogmountain.com/Engel%2015.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Guy [I have lots of experience designing/selling off-grid AE systems, some using EVs but don't own one. Local trips are by foot, bike and/or rapid transit].

The 'best' is the enemy of 'good enough'. Copper shot, not Silver bullets.

NissanLeafCamper
Posts: 205
Joined: Fri May 22, 2015 1:46 pm
Delivery Date: 01 May 2013
Location: Los Angeles California

Re: Inverter for a small refrigerator for the leaf?

Thu Jun 11, 2015 1:39 pm

mbender wrote:Ok, even though I recommended ice and a cooler earlier, I'm going to reverse that advice. Aside from the expense, it can get messy and/or inconvenient dealing with the melted ice (i.e., water :lol:). I didn't realize that this would be such a 'full-time' endeavor.

So now, the choice boils down to electricity vs. propane. Hmm, tough call...

If you do go with propane -- stove and/or refrigerator (have you looked into this one?) -- I'd suggest using a small (1-gallon), refillable propane tank, rather than those disposable bottles. That would be friendlier on the environment and your pocketbook alike.

Something to keep in mind with propane is that you really want a lot of fresh air intake and nearly complete combustion (i.e., carbon monoxide-free exhaust) when it is burning, which might cause logistical problems or unnecessary 'anxiety'.

So maybe quiet, dependable, safer, and perhaps even "free" electric is the way to go, after all. Besides whose inner geek doesn't want to own and use a 12V Peltier refrigerator?! :)

ps. I just noticed that the refrigerator I linked to above can run on AC, DC, or propane. (!) So you might call that (one) a 'win-win-win', provided the price fits your budget and its other features meet your needs.

pps. Even though edits aren't noted if you do them before another post is added, I did edit this down several times, so it may not be what you remember having once read!
Hi Sorry for the late reply. It seems I was in the process of coming down with something and ended up just struggling through work and resting most of the time I had... well... time to spare. Which was I think plenty :) I am feeling much better now. I had this slight headache, I think my body was catching a cold, and it made using the net really difficult. I still had to do some inventory and other things on the comp and all I had was just energy for that. Then i'd just lean back on the car and rest :( so bad.

I think you are right I would have to use a larger propane tank, the exchangeable at the store, to really get the best use for what I pay. Though I really think that to keep things simple electricity would be the way to go. I think a bit safer too!


BrockWI wrote:I would agree. If your going the 24x7 route then go with a compressor fridge over Peltier. The energy saving in the long run will be better and the compressor type are more consistent with the internal temperatures.

Personally I would still go with propane, I know it's a pain, but I would use a 20lb (or maybe 10lb or 6lb) tank with an adapter to the disposable tank. As far as how long they last, I have used our 16 oz small grill with a total burn time of at least 2 hours, so up that to 40 hours on a $20 fill on a 20lb tank. Having said that an inverter is smaller, safer, cleaner, but would require you to have the car in ready mode while using any significant load.

If you do go the inverter route I would strongly recommend the xantrex line
http://www.amazon.com/Xantrex-PROWatt-I ... ex+prosine" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I have had quite a few xantrex inverters and have never had an issue with any of them. I would up size any inverter for starting surge and you have to be very close to the battery for larger loads, remember a 1350w heating element will pull 120 amps at 11.5v, I would go with no smaller than #4 wire and no longer than 5 feet, up-size the wire for a longer run or add a deep cycle right at the inverter location.
Thank you for the inverter suggestion! I will be sure to pick one up once I grab the leaf I am looking for. I basically need to itemized on what I will need but at a simple glance it is: Inverter, Cables, Fridge, and Induction cooker. I too think it would be nicer to have a compressor fridge. I also think that adding a deep cycle battery would be very advisable at least to try and keep the car from being in ready mode too often.

Talking about starter battery... doesn't one of the leaf versions... SV or SL? Have a solar panel on the back which keeps the starter battery full? I wonder how much wattage that panel gets and if it would be enough to try and keep the battery fresh and running with out having to move the leaf into ready mode? Not exactly sure how much wattage the fridge would get. Though I know it wouldn't be on all the time only when it needs to lower the temp or maintain it... As for cooking ... It would just be oh so many minutes....
GRA wrote:
GRA wrote:On the inverter, I'd probably recommend 2 gauge; it's been awhile since I used to sell Trace inverters (what XantreX used to be before all the engineers decamped to Outback), but my memory says that a 2kW continuous inverter would use that, and you don't want to undersize your wire between battery and inverter, especially when dealing with start-up surge loads like a refrigerator compressor, which can suck the voltage down to the inverter's low voltage cut-off point.
Man, talk about a brain fart. Ransacking my memory a bit more, the typical recommended wire size for a 2kW, 12 Volt inverter is 4/0, not 2 gauge. Kind of hard to wrestle in a car.

For just running a fridge/freezer, doing a bit of looking around something like this, running direct off 12 Volts looks like a better deal to me (although maybe bigger than you want or need now): http://www.adventureparents.com/blog/da ... -or-camper" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Here's one that might suit your needs: http://www.bigfrogmountain.com/Engel%2015.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Thanks GRA. I was thinking on going with a really thick set of cables from the battery to the inverter. I just wanted to ask you if 4/0 is the same as 4 gauge? Would also copper quality be an issue? I don't know how 'pure' the copper on some of those wires area. Any suggestions as to from who I should buy the wires? Any good companies that you know make good stuff?
GRA wrote:
BrockWI wrote:I would agree. If your going the 24x7 route then go with a compressor fridge over Peltier. The energy saving in the long run will be better and the compressor type are more consistent with the internal temperatures.

Personally I would still go with propane, I know it's a pain, but I would use a 20lb (or maybe 10lb or 6lb) tank with an adapter to the disposable tank. As far as how long they last, I have used our 16 oz small grill with a total burn time of at least 2 hours, so up that to 40 hours on a $20 fill on a 20lb tank. Having said that an inverter is smaller, safer, cleaner, but would require you to have the car in ready mode while using any significant load.

If you do go the inverter route I would strongly recommend the xantrex line
http://www.amazon.com/Xantrex-PROWatt-I ... ex+prosine" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I have had quite a few xantrex inverters and have never had an issue with any of them. I would up size any inverter for starting surge and you have to be very close to the battery for larger loads, remember a 1350w heating element will pull 120 amps at 11.5v, I would go with no smaller than #4 wire and no longer than 5 feet, up-size the wire for a longer run or add a deep cycle right at the inverter location.

Given such frequent usage the numbers do slant more in favor of electric over ice. I concur with the use of a larger, refillable propane cylinder to keep costs down; they can usually be swapped at supermarkets, and refilled at many places. Some points; Propane refrigerators, unless they've improved a whole lot in the past ~20 years, will not freeze ice cream or make ice, and the insulation on many of the old AC-DC/propane units was pretty feeble, so even if running on electricity I'd be hesitant about the power usage and coldness. The newer ones may be a lot better, but without having the specs and some real-world data (check Home Power magazine, http://wwwhomepower.com or the latest Reals Goods Solar Living Sourcebook and see if they've run any tests of the units you're considering), I'm hesitant to recommend them if that's a requirement.

On the inverter, I'd probably recommend 2 gauge; it's been awhile since I used to sell Trace inverters (what XantreX used to be before all the engineers decamped to Outback), but my memory says that a 2kW continuous inverter would use that, and you don't want to undersize your wire between battery and inverter, especially when dealing with start-up surge loads like a refrigerator compressor, which can suck the voltage down to the inverter's low voltage cut-off point.

Whatever you do, I recommend that you spend a little more time educating yourself, via Home Power and the Sourcebook (http://realgoods.com/solar-living-sourc ... th-edition" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;) before you buy. The more you understand, the better decisions you'll make.
There is this thread in the forums where someone used their leaf to power their home with what looks to be a 900w inverter from xantrek:

http://www.amazon.com/Xantrex-806-1210- ... B002I04A74" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Here is the thread

http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.php?f=37&t=13097" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

He basically ran his fridge for about I think almost 24 hours? Would it be safer to pick the higher wattage inverter you suggested? It appears to be twice as strong from what I saw on Ebay. Would it just be safer to power up the load with a higher wattage inverter? I would say that at least if in the future I want to run something better then I'd be covered :) I don't mind spending the extra $ I just want to know what your thoughts are over using the 900w inverter?

I was also told that higher wattage inverters drain the battery more when idle? Is that true?

Thank you so much for all the links i have so much reading up to do

GRA
Posts: 10891
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 1:49 pm
Location: East side of San Francisco Bay

Re: Inverter for a small refrigerator for the leaf?

Thu Jun 11, 2015 4:33 pm

NissanLeafCamper wrote:
BrockWI wrote:I would agree. If your going the 24x7 route then go with a compressor fridge over Peltier. The energy saving in the long run will be better and the compressor type are more consistent with the internal temperatures.

Personally I would still go with propane, I know it's a pain, but I would use a 20lb (or maybe 10lb or 6lb) tank with an adapter to the disposable tank. As far as how long they last, I have used our 16 oz small grill with a total burn time of at least 2 hours, so up that to 40 hours on a $20 fill on a 20lb tank. Having said that an inverter is smaller, safer, cleaner, but would require you to have the car in ready mode while using any significant load.

If you do go the inverter route I would strongly recommend the xantrex line
http://www.amazon.com/Xantrex-PROWatt-I ... ex+prosine" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I have had quite a few xantrex inverters and have never had an issue with any of them. I would up size any inverter for starting surge and you have to be very close to the battery for larger loads, remember a 1350w heating element will pull 120 amps at 11.5v, I would go with no smaller than #4 wire and no longer than 5 feet, up-size the wire for a longer run or add a deep cycle right at the inverter location.
Thank you for the inverter suggestion! I will be sure to pick one up once I grab the leaf I am looking for. I basically need to itemized on what I will need but at a simple glance it is: Inverter, Cables, Fridge, and Induction cooker. I too think it would be nicer to have a compressor fridge. I also think that adding a deep cycle battery would be very advisable at least to try and keep the car from being in ready mode too often.

Talking about starter battery... doesn't one of the leaf versions... SV or SL? Have a solar panel on the back which keeps the starter battery full? I wonder how much wattage that panel gets and if it would be enough to try and keep the battery fresh and running with out having to move the leaf into ready mode? Not exactly sure how much wattage the fridge would get. Though I know it wouldn't be on all the time only when it needs to lower the temp or maintain it... As for cooking ... It would just be oh so many minutes....
Leave the panel on the LEAF out of your calcs, it's essentially cosmetic.
NissanLeafCamper wrote:
GRA wrote:
GRA wrote:On the inverter, I'd probably recommend 2 gauge; it's been awhile since I used to sell Trace inverters (what XantreX used to be before all the engineers decamped to Outback), but my memory says that a 2kW continuous inverter would use that, and you don't want to undersize your wire between battery and inverter, especially when dealing with start-up surge loads like a refrigerator compressor, which can suck the voltage down to the inverter's low voltage cut-off point.
Man, talk about a brain fart. Ransacking my memory a bit more, the typical recommended wire size for a 2kW, 12 Volt inverter is 4/0, not 2 gauge. Kind of hard to wrestle in a car.

For just running a fridge/freezer, doing a bit of looking around something like this, running direct off 12 Volts looks like a better deal to me (although maybe bigger than you want or need now): http://www.adventureparents.com/blog/da ... -or-camper" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Here's one that might suit your needs: http://www.bigfrogmountain.com/Engel%2015.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Thanks GRA. I was thinking on going with a really thick set of cables from the battery to the inverter. I just wanted to ask you if 4/0 is the same as 4 gauge? Would also copper quality be an issue? I don't know how 'pure' the copper on some of those wires area. Any suggestions as to from who I should buy the wires? Any good companies that you know make good stuff?
No. 4/0 ('Four Ought'; #0000) is much larger then 4 gauge (#4). Make sure it's copper, and do oversize the inverter cables if you go with a compressor fridge (but IMO, getting the small DC fridge/freezer that you can plug directly into a 12V socket is a better way to go. If you insist on the induction cooktop, use the inverter for that. Here's one site that has inverter FAQs including recommended wire sizing (note, I think the wire sizing there is for continuous load ratings, not serious surge loads which are an issue with motors and compressors): http://www.donrowe.com/power-inverter-f ... htm#hookup" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

The inverter needs to have a surge rating large enough to handle the max surge current of the load; data for both should be available before you buy, with a money-back guarantee. And any battery you use also has to be big enough to provide the surge current without the voltage sagging to the inverter's low voltage disconnect point (typically around 10.5 volts).
NissanLeafCamper wrote:
GRA wrote:<snip>
Given such frequent usage the numbers do slant more in favor of electric over ice. I concur with the use of a larger, refillable propane cylinder to keep costs down; they can usually be swapped at supermarkets, and refilled at many places. Some points; Propane refrigerators, unless they've improved a whole lot in the past ~20 years, will not freeze ice cream or make ice, and the insulation on many of the old AC-DC/propane units was pretty feeble, so even if running on electricity I'd be hesitant about the power usage and coldness. The newer ones may be a lot better, but without having the specs and some real-world data (check Home Power magazine, http://wwwhomepower.com or the latest Reals Goods Solar Living Sourcebook and see if they've run any tests of the units you're considering), I'm hesitant to recommend them if that's a requirement.

On the inverter, I'd probably recommend 2 gauge; it's been awhile since I used to sell Trace inverters (what XantreX used to be before all the engineers decamped to Outback), but my memory says that a 2kW continuous inverter would use that, and you don't want to undersize your wire between battery and inverter, especially when dealing with start-up surge loads like a refrigerator compressor, which can suck the voltage down to the inverter's low voltage cut-off point.

Whatever you do, I recommend that you spend a little more time educating yourself, via Home Power and the Sourcebook (http://realgoods.com/solar-living-sourc ... th-edition" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;) before you buy. The more you understand, the better decisions you'll make.
There is this thread in the forums where someone used their leaf to power their home with what looks to be a 900w inverter from xantrek:

http://www.amazon.com/Xantrex-806-1210- ... B002I04A74" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Here is the thread

http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.php?f=37&t=13097" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

He basically ran his fridge for about I think almost 24 hours? Would it be safer to pick the higher wattage inverter you suggested? It appears to be twice as strong from what I saw on Ebay. Would it just be safer to power up the load with a higher wattage inverter? I would say that at least if in the future I want to run something better then I'd be covered :) I don't mind spending the extra $ I just want to know what your thoughts are over using the 900w inverter?

I was also told that higher wattage inverters drain the battery more when idle? Is that true?

Thank you so much for all the links i have so much reading up to do
Inverter standby loads are too dependent on the model for me to make any general statement. As for the rest of your questions, I really think your best option is to read the Sourcebook and then, if your questions haven't been fully answered, come back to us. Trying to do this all piecemeal will take way too much time, and you really need to understand everything as an integrated system; as we've tried to point out, picking out one item at a time and considering it individually doesn't work very well. Trust me - get the sourcebook and study it. You have equipment that can work reasonably well for you now, so no need to hurry on this.
Guy [I have lots of experience designing/selling off-grid AE systems, some using EVs but don't own one. Local trips are by foot, bike and/or rapid transit].

The 'best' is the enemy of 'good enough'. Copper shot, not Silver bullets.

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