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Oil fired hot water boiler
#1
Yup, that's how I make heat and hot water at my place.

My goal is to have a deep cycle battery and an inverter to power the heat system so the system can remain powered through the night without needing to run the generator at 3am. I don't really care what the neighbors think about the noise. However, people are generally happier and easier to deal with when they are well rested.
Nml2lk

I measured the current that the thing uses in its various run states. Here's what I came up with:
- current/power
- values show peak inrush, then run value

-- Controls alone - 0.125A/15W, 0.110A/13W
-- 1 circulator pump - 1.03A/124W, 0.56A/67W
-- 1 circulator pump start, then burner start - 10.05A/1206W, 3.3A/396W
-- All on (2 pumps and controls power on, then burner start) - 14.5A/1740W, 4.8A/576W
The 2nd pump is for potable hot water. I would shut this down over night, then turn it back on in the morning when I'm on generator power.


First of all, how does the ignition step up x-former handle being powered by an inverter (modified sine wave/ugly square wave)?


Do inverters scale power usage up and down based on the load, or would I be wasting power with 1 large inverter running all night?

Perhaps I am over thinking this bit. Would I be better off with 2 inverters - 1 for the controls and pump (200W), and 1 for the burner (1200W)? The burner signal from the control box would be re-routed through a 150A contactor which would close the battery side of the circuit, turn on the larger inverter; powering the burner. The idea here is that it seems kind of silly to run a 1500 watt inverter all night (power for everything) when I really only need 1200 watts of it for a relatively short amount of time.

Do inverters prefer to be turned on before the load is applied? If so, the whole idea above goes out the window.

Thanks in advance for the input streaker Big Grin.
.
"We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."
- Benjamin Franklin
-------------------------------------------------
Proud to be a member of pa2a.org since Oct 2012.
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#2
Before you start this, have you actually found a battery that's able to supply that much current for the length of time you're looking at, and priced it out?
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#3
You're getting ahead of me.

Step 1, will it work?

Step 2, source and cost components.

Step 3, spend $$ on the project, or start the generator at 3am.
.
"We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."
- Benjamin Franklin
-------------------------------------------------
Proud to be a member of pa2a.org since Oct 2012.
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#4
I can't really answer the question about how the furnace will react to sine wave generated by an inverter. Maybe one of the furnace guys here can answer that. If it doesn't react poorly, I'd say it should work provided you can find a battery that's able to supply the current for the length of time. Before I'd consider proceeding I'd find that out first before I waste any other time trying to figure anything else out.

I think what you're going to find is the battery is going to be cost prohibitive, as well as the recharge time for the battery might fairly long. Going the route of two inverters doesn't sound bad, for the reasons you stated. No sense in drawing 1500W if you're not using that much.
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#5
Ok, never mind. Batteries are running in the $300 range, and I would need at least 2 or 3 for the load we're talking about.

I guess the neighbors are going to be a bit grumpy.

What about running the inverter off of the car? It is far quieter than the generator. Will the average alternator handle the current requirement?

(I'm trying to keep the house warm and the noise down)
.
"We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."
- Benjamin Franklin
-------------------------------------------------
Proud to be a member of pa2a.org since Oct 2012.
Reply
#6
Honda generator.
NRA life member/ILA/PVA/Whittington Center sponsor
GOA member/Second Amendment Foundation member
NAHC life member
KECA founding committee member
http://www.experienceelkcountry.com/
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#7
streaker69;41041 Wrote:Before you start this, have you actually found a battery that's able to supply that much current for the length of time you're looking at, and priced it out?


3 marine batteries hooked up in series.

Or 2 big truck deep cycle batteries, the kind you find on Class-A RV's.


When hooking up batteries in series always remember: postive to postivie, negative to negative, do not cross. And when you put on the load, you connect to the positive terminal on one end of the battery chain, and then to the negative battery on the other end of the chain of batteries.


So it looks like this. LOAD would be your inverter. You plug in the AC appliances into the inverter.

Code:
(+) LOAD (-) --------------|
|                          |
|                          |
(+) BATTERY ONE    (-)     |
|                   |      |
(+) BATTERY TWO    (-)     |
|                   |      |
(+) BATTERY THREE  (-)-----|

If you use this many marine batteries and they are going to be in a confined space, get battery boxes for each one. Make sure you get a GOOD and SMART battery charger. You connect the charger the same way you do the inverter.

You never want to overcharge this battery circuit in a room without good ventilation because it will create a build-up of hydrogen gas. So never overcharge the batteries. A smart charger will cut off the charging cycle when the voltage over the whole circuit goes over a certain voltage, like 13V if we're talking a series of 12V batteries.


Chargers suck. You have to closely monitor your charger to make sure it cuts off properly and also doesn't get screwy when there's a load on the inverter or you'll need to take the charger back and return it and try another one. It is trial and error.

I've got a Wal-mart digital charger that's recycling my marine battery and when I put the inverter on it tries to overcharge the battery. I'm taking it back to the store when I get a chance.
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#8
ArcticSplash;41078 Wrote:When hooking up batteries in series always remember: postive to postivie, negative to negative, do not cross. And when you put on the load, you connect to the positive terminal on one end of the battery chain, and then to the negative battery on the other end of the chain of batteries.


So it looks like this. LOAD would be your inverter. You plug in the AC appliances into the inverter.

Code:
(+) LOAD (-) --------------|
|                          |
|                          |
(+) BATTERY ONE    (-)     |
|                   |      |
(+) BATTERY TWO    (-)     |
|                   |      |
(+) BATTERY THREE  (-)-----|

Words mean things, ok?

What you described is hooking up batteries in parallel, not series. By hooking up batteries in parallel, you're still going to have 12VDC on the output, but increased current. Hooking them up in series + to - to + to -, you'll actually be adding the voltage. Kind of like how you get 4.5VDC when you put 3 1.5V batteries in a flashlight. If you were to do that with car batteries, you'd end up with 36VDC.
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#9
streaker69;41081 Wrote:
ArcticSplash;41078 Wrote:When hooking up batteries in series always remember: postive to postivie, negative to negative, do not cross. And when you put on the load, you connect to the positive terminal on one end of the battery chain, and then to the negative battery on the other end of the chain of batteries.


So it looks like this. LOAD would be your inverter. You plug in the AC appliances into the inverter.

Code:
(+) LOAD (-) --------------|
|                          |
|                          |
(+) BATTERY ONE    (-)     |
|                   |      |
(+) BATTERY TWO    (-)     |
|                   |      |
(+) BATTERY THREE  (-)-----|

Words mean things, ok?

What you described is hooking up batteries in parallel, not series. By hooking up batteries in parallel, you're still going to have 12VDC on the output, but increased current. Hooking them up in series + to - to + to -, you'll actually be adding the voltage. Kind of like how you get 4.5VDC when you put 3 1.5V batteries in a flashlight. If you were to do that with car batteries, you'd end up with 36VDC.


Yup.

Errata: The desired configuration is PARALLEL for a high cap inverter, not series. You want 12V output (or 24V depending on battery type). Do not mix different types of batteries together when creating a backup-battery bank either.

[Image: Parallel.jpg]

You can increase the capacity by building a busbar, hooked up in this configuration. For applications over 1,000-watts it behooves you to also use the highest gauge wiring you can get. Don't do this with flimsy speaker wire.
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#10
streaker69;41060 Wrote:I can't really answer the question about how the furnace will react to sine wave generated by an inverter. Maybe one of the furnace guys here can answer that. If it doesn't react poorly, I'd say it should work provided you can find a battery that's able to supply the current for the length of time. Before I'd consider proceeding I'd find that out first before I waste any other time trying to figure anything else out.

I think what you're going to find is the battery is going to be cost prohibitive, as well as the recharge time for the battery might fairly long. Going the route of two inverters doesn't sound bad, for the reasons you stated. No sense in drawing 1500W if you're not using that much.

Only if they are powering separate things on completely separate circuits....DON'T run two power inverters in parallel! It's a phase issue.
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