Best option for upgrading inverter? - Luxury Coach Lifestyles
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Old 10-21-2008, 05:53 PM   #1
jdaniel
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Default Best option for upgrading inverter?

My coach has a Heart inverter and seperate charger (yes it cooks the batteries). I would like to upgrade to a newer inverter that includes a better charging system. I have used a Freedom Marine 25 in the past and liked it. I'm sure the batteries would last longer.
My present inverter has a seperate remote panel and it doesn't matter if it's in the on, off or slow charge position, the inverter is still on. My lights, tv and microwave are on the line that I know of....maybe more. Thats all I need to run.
My coach came with 4 8-D but I have added two more. STILL when it sits unplugged overnight, I have to use the merge switch to crank it. If it sits a couple of days it's all too dead. That just doesn't seem right. Am I missing something or would an inverter update be a good idea?
If so, how complicated is it to wire in the newer style inverters?
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Old 10-22-2008, 01:41 AM   #2
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mine originally had a separate inverter and charger, like most of our vintage. the only way to go is with an inverter charger.

there are two choices and then choices of brands.

choice one....modified sine wave. this is fine except can potentially cause some problems with a few lcd tv's, but most will work just fine with it. my samsung lcd tv's work fine. computers like clean power, but i have had no problem with mine on a modified sine wave.

choice two....pure sine wave. this is the way of choice. but it is considerably more expensive. if i were to replace mine, i will go this way. you can even get the ability to have the generator autostart when the batteries get too low.

i happen to like Xantrex brand. they have great tech support and are really great units. i have the freedom 458 2kw. i know michael has a pure sine wave and there are two different choices of them from xantrex.

size of the inverter is usually the larger the better, but not always so. a large inverter without the supporting batteries will give you lots of power for a very short period of time.

there are other brands too that i am sure are fine.

as to installing, if you are reasonably handy with wiring and not afraid to dig into it, they will not be real tough to put in. that said, it is critical to install them correctly and very dangerous if you dont.

xantrex has downloads of their installation manuals on their inverter chargers that you can download and look at. it shows various configurations and will give you a feel.

i just repaired my inverter by putting a new control board in that fixed not being able to turn it on and off. so i will keep mine for a while. though this weekend i am rewiring it to work the way i want with new romex and ne breakers.

so, i wouldnt myself be afraid of putting it in.

you will need to determine if the thumb sized wires coming from the batteries are big enough for what you want to put in, and the same for the romex going to and from the inverter to the panel. as well you will need an large inline fuse by the batteries and the proper wires for whatever control panel you put in. nowadays, they require a 6pin phone cable or cat5. i ran cat5 for mine as i relocated the control panel.

my inverter charger is under my bed with the batteries being on each side of the coach just behind the inverter.

i am sure michael will have great comments here as well. sounds like a fun project. i would be glad to sketch out my complete wiring for you if you think it would help.

the thing with having it installed is that you will pay full retail price and then i would guess 4-700 dollars labor. i am not afraid to shop online and in fact, i would not be afraid to be refurbished units either. i know michael bought a refurbished one and has had no problems.

contact me privately if you want to talk and i will give you my phone number.

later

tom
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Old 10-22-2008, 03:57 AM   #3
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Default E - 07 error code

My Heart 2500 inverter/charger is showing an E -07 message in the the Link 2000 window inside the coach. I read the owner's manual and it showed that the Triac was overheating. What in the hell is a Triac? It stated to turn it off and let it cool down. I did that, and it gave the same error when turned back on.

Can anyone give me some advice on what parts have to be changed?
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Old 10-22-2008, 04:29 AM   #4
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howdy,

a triac is a type of current switch using a pair of thyristors. it is most likely on the main circuit board of your invertor. there are only 3 or so boards inside the unit.

i just replaced the control board in mine and it was about 200 bucks for the board alone. the main circuit board is more like 4-500 bucks. (i am pretty sure but not positive) i just remember the tech saying that if it was the main board it was in that order of cost....

i am just guessing which board it is on though.

then you have to pay labor to replace the board and check it out. could cost you another hundred bucks or so. that is if you take the inverter charger out yourself and take it to a xantrex repair center yourself. i got lucky in that the repair center was only a few miles from my house.

btw, the link 2000 control panel you have is very very expensive. in the order of 400 bucks best price.

hard choice to make if it really is going to cost 500 bucks or so to fix. i probably would put in a pure sine wave inverter charger then....

my two cents worth...about all it is worth.

tom
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Old 10-22-2008, 04:57 AM   #5
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hey, i spent considerable time trying to locate new circuit boards to put in my inverter myself....i was not able to find any anywhere and i am pretty good at finding this stuff. they are only available from authorized repair centers....

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Old 10-22-2008, 06:36 AM   #6
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Jimmy, your issue sounds like a dead battery charger or no electric power to the battery charger's outlet. If you are pleased with your existing inverter, you can replace your battery boiler with a new multistage battery charger and install it in the same location as your existing charger (likely in the bay). Unless your system has been changed out or modified since it was built, your battery charger is plugged into an outlet in the bay with the power cord and transfer switch. First make sure that the outlet it is plugged into has power. If the outlet has 120 volts and the charger is still not producing any voltage, you will need to either replace the charger with a good multi-stage charger or replace the inverter and charger with a combination unit.

I upgraded my inverter and separate battery boiler (er, charger) to a ProSine for 3 reasons: 1) I didn't want to destroy my AGM batteries, 2) I wanted more inverter power as the original inverter was only 1200 watts and would not run the microwave with the power already being consumed by the TV's, etc, and 3) I wanted to make sure that my electronic equipment had the cleanest power available.

In the change over, I had to rewire my inverter system to take advantage of the new inverter/chargers built-in transfer switch. This presented both a challenge and dilemma. The new inverter allows all of the circuits that are wired through the inverter to switch over to the batteries immediately without having to manually turn the various circuits on from the switches located around the coach. However, as the unit does run all the time now, it creates more heat in the bedroom than previously. I did have to increase the size of the wiring and add a separate electrical sub-panel but the results were worthwhile. My only regret is the added heat from the new unit. I would not have had adequate room to install the 2kw ProSine in the bay where the power cord and the old battery charger was located. By installing the ProSine in the location of the existing inverter, I was able to leave the old battery charger in place and just unplug it. It is available should I ever need to use it to bring back badly discharged batteries or should the battery charger section of the ProSine fail. You do have some fan noise under the bed that did not exist previously unless you were actually running on battery power.
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Old 10-22-2008, 06:43 AM   #7
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Tuga, unless you have a friend that is good with electronics, you are probably better off looking for a replacment for your inverter. I have been very pleased with the remanufactured unit I bought. Yours is a higher wattage (thus more expensive) unit than mine. The new Outback inverters are HIGHLY recommended.
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Old 10-22-2008, 01:37 PM   #8
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Thanks everyone, I think that I will talk to Newell - get their opinion. But it looks like an Outback inverter is in my future. Michael, who did you buy your remanufactered unit from?
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Old 10-22-2008, 01:51 PM   #9
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Tuga, I purchased a remanufactured 2kw ProSine from Discount Solar in Quartsite, AZ.
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Old 10-22-2008, 02:09 PM   #10
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Good Michael, I'll call them after I talk to Newell. Thanks again.
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