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Old 10-26-2021, 02:32 PM   #1
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Why does my inverter breaker trip?

I have experienced this a few times now. We are plugged into 50 AMP shore power and are using a portable heater that plugs into the wall. We start cooking breakfast. If we use any two of the coffee pot, electric grill, toaster or microwave the breaker trips. Sometimes it is the 30 Amp breaker on the breaker panel and sometimes it is the 30 amp breaker right on the inverter.

My question is why would this situation even involve the inverter? I thought that when you are plugged into shore power the inverter is off-line. I know it charges the batteries but is the power actually routed through the inverter?
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Old 10-26-2021, 02:36 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graeagle55 View Post
My question is why would this situation even involve the inverter? I thought that when you are plugged into shore power the inverter is off-line. I know it charges the batteries but is the power actually routed through the inverter?
It is in mine. 30A shore power, all of which passes through the 3000W inverter/charger. It would appear that some circuits are passing through your inverter, which is being overloaded.
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Old 10-26-2021, 03:08 PM   #3
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I agree with KanzKran. The inverter transfer switch was overloaded.

Each component in your electrical system has its own capacity. Apparently your inverter transfer switch has a maximum capacity of 30 amps at 120 volts.

The sum of all the power drawn from the outlets connected to the inverter must be less that 30 amps. This is often called pass through because the inverter is not supplying power. The shore power line is supplying the power.

These same outlets may be live when shore power is disconnected. The sum of all the power may be even more limited, because the inverter has its own limits. In this case the inverter is converting 12 volts DC to 120 volts AC and it has its own limits.

The RV may have other outlets that are only powered from shore power. They are not live when disconnected from shore power. Connect the space heater and possibly one other high power device to one of these.

If you want, you can get a higher capacity pass through transfer switch.
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Old 10-26-2021, 03:48 PM   #4
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All outlets and devices that are powered on battery (i.e. inverter) are ALWAYS pulling power through the inverter. The inverter in turn pulls power from one of the batteries, generator, or shore power. Obvious things that don't run through the inverter are the air conditioners and electric water heater if you have one.

If you pull more than the 30 amps the inverter is designed to provide, you will trip one of the breakers. We have done it running a microwave and convection oven plus a space heater.

If you are seeing two different breakers go at different times it suggests a true overload as opposed to a faulty breaker (which does happen).

Manage your power and you should avoid it in the future.
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Old 10-26-2021, 04:15 PM   #5
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Even on 50amp shore power, most inverter breakers are limited to 30amp throughput, even if you are not using the batteries.
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Old 10-26-2021, 07:34 PM   #6
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Depending on circuit lay out you should be able to to swap around breakers in CB panel but then you would loose that circuit in invert mode. Heating elements eat up the watts quickly. I went to cone filter pour through coffee right into a thermos carafe . It really helps my boondocking leftover charge in the morning. It's faster as well and I have good hot coffee hours later.
I had a couple carafes already to use, there are more elegant all in one setups .
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Old 10-26-2021, 10:49 PM   #7
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Unfortunately, its the nature of these beasts. You'll need to budget your power needs from inverter to non-inverter circuits.

I put these dots on all the inverter outlets. Simple and effective. It reminds DW to use alternate outlets, if needed. It also helps grandkids know which outlets are 'hot' when we're driving with inverter only on for their electronic gadgets.

https://www.staples.com/Avery-5793-R...yABEgKBa_D_BwE
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Old 10-27-2021, 04:45 AM   #8
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To simplify it.

Plug the heater into a Non inverted outlet.
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Old 10-27-2021, 08:29 AM   #9
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I had a major electrical problem earlier this year. I involved an inverted circuit and I initially though it was my inverter but turned out to be the circuit that provided power to the GFCI Bedroom & Bathroom.

Troubleshooting and fixing the problem forced me to become familiar with all the circuits and what I found is that there is no NONE inverted circuit in the house portion of the coach.

I have a None Inverted circuit behind the refrigerator and the block heat circuit.

All circuits in the portion of my coach are controlled by the inverter. So now I know I will have to be careful trying to run high loads off these outlets.



One thing I did was rewire the circuit to the 120 volt circuit to the refrigerator by installing an outlet in the bedroom TV cabinet off this circuit. Now I can run a space heater off that circuit completely bypassing the inverter. It will provide some flexibility.
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Old 10-28-2021, 09:36 AM   #10
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Thanks everyone! I see now that the power is still routed through the inverter. I will make sure I turn off any space heaters before using my microwave!

Appreciate all your help!
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Old 10-28-2021, 11:44 AM   #11
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Or find / install a new outlet that does not run thru the inverter circuit.
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Old 10-28-2021, 11:59 AM   #12
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There IS a "work around" found on some higher end coaches (I know first hand many Foretravels do this):


Use a second ATS.


First one is standard: In from shore and In from generator, OUT to main 120 VAC breaker box.


Second one is IN from breaker box and IN from inverter and OUT to sub-panel.


That way, when on shore power you can use more amps and are not using the "pass through" function of the inverter/charger.


Were it me, I would NOT retrofit this (think $$), but would be aware of which outlets were on/not on inverter-supplied power AND/OR monitor power consumption.


Another option would be to run new wiring from main 120 VAC breaker box to some outlets where you want to use heaters when on shore power. I have even seen outlets where the upper outlet is inverter-powered and the lower one is direct from main 120 VAC breaker panel.


There ARE options.
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