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Old 05-07-2013, 10:15 PM   #1
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Question What I want to do - Possible ??

I would like to be able to power a new flat screen TV and make coffee in the morning without starting up the generator or being plugged to shore power. Looks like I would need an inverter, but don't know what size will be needed to do the job. Also that brings up a second question of how much battery power would be needed to do the job ?

I currently don't have an inverter in the coach ( 2007 Allegro) so not sure where to locate the inverter or how to connect it into the system to power only a couple of outlets. I guess, ideally it would be wired so that if shore power is available, that would power the outlets, but if not the inverter would power them. Is this a dream or something that could be done, with the proper knowledge ??

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Old 05-07-2013, 10:24 PM   #2
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You don't say where you are, but if you are anywhere close to Red Bay I'd call Brannon Hutchenson of Custom RV and scheule him to put in an appropriate inverter. His number is 256-668-0973.
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:33 PM   #3
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You don't say where you are,
We are in Idaho. But we are planning a trip to OH ?
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:55 PM   #4
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1. Yes you can do it, but you need not just the proper sized inverter. You also need enough house battery capacity to support the inverter. I use a small Mr. Coffee 5 cup brewer that does not draw a lot of electricity and has no electronic controls (Clock, timer, etc) that sometimes don't like inverter power.

2. If you have a gas stovetop, you have the option of heating water on it and using the older style drip system that uses no electric.

3. For inverter and battery sizing, lots of info is available on the web - Google is your friend.

In my case, I do use my 8KW diesel genny when I get up in the AM. In addition to the coffee pot, I usually run the toaster, both gas AND electric for the hot water heater (heats faster), TV, and an electric space heater to warm the shower enclosure. It gives my genny good exercise, and only costs about a buck in fuel for a half hour run.
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Old 05-08-2013, 09:20 AM   #5
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You and do what you want in a very easy way by just installing a 2000 watt inverter, that has regular plugs on the face, and when inverter power is needed, just plug in your shore power cable into the inverter. Make sure you Converter is off so an endless electrical loop is avoided.

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Old 05-08-2013, 09:25 AM   #6
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and when inverter power is needed, just plug in your shore power cable into the inverter.
I have 50 amp shore power, do they make an inverter that will take the 50 amp plug ? Also, how do I turn off the converter ?

I see there are inverters that are "Sine Wave", what is that and is this the type I need ?

Sorry, but I'm new to RVing, so lots to learn !!

Bill
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Old 05-08-2013, 09:26 AM   #7
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I guess I'm surprised that a 2007 coach didn't come with an inverter... but my first thought was to just heat coffee on the stove and use a plug in inverter to power the TV. Total cost about $25.

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Old 05-08-2013, 09:33 AM   #8
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I guess I'm surprised that a 2007 coach didn't come with an inverter...
Don't know that it didn't come with one, but not surprised it's not there ! The people who owned the coach before us took, some stuff that should have been left (remote for sat. dish, ect...) And there may well be one, that I have not found ? I often don't see things that are right in front of me, just ask the wife !!!!

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Old 05-08-2013, 09:44 AM   #9
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I considered an inverter for the same reasons you mentioned, then I priced 2000 watt inverters, about $1000, plus the heavy wiring involved,3/0. Then figured I could buy a crap load of diesel for the genny with a lot less hassle. My $.02, Art.
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Old 05-08-2013, 10:24 AM   #10
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I can't believe you don't have an inverter on a 2007 MH! I also question someone taking something like that with them! Maybe it's there and you just haven't found it. You should be able to call the factory tech support with the VIN number of the MH and they should be able to tell you exactly where it is.

Good luck, happy trails, and God bless!
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Old 05-08-2013, 02:21 PM   #11
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I didn't believe it either, so i looked. In 2007 an inverter was not standard on the Allegro or Allegro Bay, it was an option. The Allegro Bus had a 2000w inverter standard.
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Old 05-08-2013, 04:18 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuts View Post
I have 50 amp shore power, do they make an inverter that will take the 50 amp plug ? Also, how do I turn off the converter ?

I see there are inverters that are "Sine Wave", what is that and is this the type I need ?

Sorry, but I'm new to RVing, so lots to learn !!

Bill
You can get adaptor plugs that can adapt 50 amp plug to a 30 amp plug and then another that converts to a 20 amp (standard 3 prong plug) That way you can hook up to almost anything.

120 volts AC is alternating current, 60 cycles. The shape of the alternating current appears as a sine wave on an oscilloscope. Most less expensive inverters create a 'modified sine wave' that looks like steps. The MSW inverter is useful for many devices, but in many newer electronic controllers, chargers, and other devices it creates heat and failure of the device. A 'pure sine wave' inverter is more expensive but important if the items being used require PSW.

I's suggest using a stovetop percolator or French press for coffee and a smaller inverter for your TV. Any inverter over about 200 watts is best directly connected to the battery with appropriate sized wires and located close to the batteries. Then run 120 v wires to an outlet in the RV and an extension cord.
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Old 05-08-2013, 04:46 PM   #13
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Okay, you only have to kick me in the head a few times to get my attention !!!! I'll look into the stove top option for coffee... Still have to figure out the TV options ? But I can't get the satellite system to work anyway, so might not matter ???

Bill
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Old 05-09-2013, 12:40 AM   #14
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Bill......A couple of things you need to know about inverters. First, it is very difficult to add a large inverter to an RV that did not come with one so that it will WORK like a coach that did come with one. It's possible, but will be very expensive, both in the price of the inverter and adding it to the system.

Second, if you do add an inverter, it needs to be as close to your batteries as possible. You have to run LARGE battery cable 2/0 or larger, so the distance has to be short both because of the loss on long cables and their cost.

The best way to do what you want is to add an inverter sized to run what you want. Something in the 800 to 1000 watt would probably do. It doesn't have to be Pure Sine Wave (cleaner power, but more expensive). A Modified Sine Wave would do what you want.

The secret is to mount it close to your batteries to keep the cables small and cheap and then use Romex to run to where you want outlets. There is no loss of power with the Romex length (at least in an RV.)

So.....you add the inverter and then run Romex through plastic conduit under the coach and up into a cabinet where your entertainment center is located. Run another line to your kitchen and into a cabinet where your coffee pot will reach.

Lastly, it will be cheaper to buy an inverter that you turn on and off manually when needed. The more expensive ones have to be wired so that when your shore power is connected or the generator is on, it (inverter) passes power through to your entertainment center and coffee pot. You'll also have to change the plug form one outlet to the inverter outlet when watching TV.

So it can be done, it just depends on what you need and how much you're willing to pay. I just added a Magnum 800 MSW inverter to my coach just to run a residential refer. It came with the built in transfer switch so that the refer would run on shore power when plugged in. It was about $400.00 and another $200.00 for wiring.
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