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Old 05-17-2015, 06:25 AM   #15
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Just another thing to clear up, with your 4, 6 volt battery setup.

You calculated 760 Amp hours capacity . The way you did it, is the wrong way to calculate.

Whenever 2, batteries are in series, the volts double, but the AH does not. That is how yours is setup.

In your case, you have a 380 Amp hour capacity battery bank. Adding 2, 6 volt batteries, in series, will add 190 AH.

This is a bunch of stuff to absorb, but well worth the effort, for understanding your battery bank .
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Old 05-17-2015, 06:53 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Golfwannabee View Post
Good day to all.

I am trying to solve an inverter voltage issue for the new Kenmore residential refrigerator (115VAC; 7.2amp) that I installed last week. The refrigerator runs fine off shore power and generator power but not well on inverted power. Measured voltage at the refrigerator outlet shows shore and generator power at 121-123VAC but the inverter power to the same outlet is only 102-105VAC.

If anyone has any thoughts, I’d appreciate your comments and feedback. Thanks.



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The low voltage reading is because you require a true RMS volt meter to read a m sine wave. The voltage will truly be 120. But as other people have stated your fridge will not run on a M sine wave
Golfwannabee

When you say "the refrigerator runs fine off shore power and generator power but not well on inverted power", what precisely are the symptoms of the poor operation of the fridge on inverter power?

I suspect you may have a "meter problem" rather than an
"electrical/battery/inverter/refrigerator" problem.

As Newmar10 said it is not unusual if/when a meter which is not "true RMS" to read MSW voltage incorrectly.

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Old 05-17-2015, 06:54 AM   #17
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Thanks for the quick replies and electrical education. Very helpful.

Here's some clarifying information based on your questions and comments. As mentioned in "option 2" of my post, my inverter is a Xantrex RV2012GS, MSW, 2000 watt, 12 volt inverter. For volt/amp measures I am using a Klein Clamp meter, model CL200.

FYI, I took readings again this morning (5/17/2015) and got 106.6VAC and 0.1amps. Battery status was "float charging" which is the condition under which I've taken all readings to date.

I have checked cable connections from the batteries as far as I can trace them toward the inverter and at the inverter itself. All connections are squeaky clean, tight, and visually there are no signs of any issues (overheating, etc.) I opened the transfer switch cabinet and visual inspection is similar. I did not poke around with any meter readings since I'm not comfortable with that yet.

Most of your posts recommend moving to a Pure Sine Wave inverter. Kenmore has not been much help on answering MSW vs PSW inverter. Is there any definitive testing that will answer the question, or do I just install the PSW?

Still looking for your sage advice -- and thankful to have it.
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Old 05-17-2015, 07:26 AM   #18
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The Klein CL200 is not a true RMS meter and will not read a modified sinewave output properly. True RMS meters are a little more expensive but they work on everything.

I am not surprised that Kenmore has not been helpful as the manufacturers do not build Residential Refrigerators to work on a Modified sinewave inverter. With that said that does not mean that some of them won't work as some do.

Most RV manufacturers do not put modified sinewave inverters in anymore because they cause problems worth Refrigerators, TV's and other modern electronics.

The simple answer to your problem is to replace the modified sinewave inverter with a pure sinewave inverter, problem solved!

I realize this is not the cheapest way but may be the only way short of replacing the refrigerator which would require finding one that will work on modified.
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Old 05-17-2015, 08:01 AM   #19
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Your meter is definitely not a true RMS meter. Being a varying waveform, the important value for an AC voltage is the RMS value, which is basically the average voltage over time. A true RMS meter will correctly measure this average value for just about any waveform. A less expensive meter will simply read the peak voltage, and then multiply it by 0.707 to get the display value. The meter is assuming that the voltage is a sine wave, and if it were, it would then be showing the proper value. But that 0.707 conversion factor doesn't apply to a modified sine wave, so the meter displays the wrong value.

I would say that you don't really have a low voltage problem with the inverter, it's just a display artifact of the meter. I think your MSW Inverter is working just fine, and you're chasing a red herring looking at the batteries, wiring, and inverter.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfwannabee View Post
Is there any definitive testing that will answer the question, or do I just install the PSW?
A mostly definitive test is that the refrigerator works fine on AC and generator power (both sine waves) and doesn't work on the inverter (MSW.) That's pretty compelling evidence. The definitive test would be to find someone with a pure sine wave inverter, park next to them, and run a heavy extension cord from your fridge to their coach and try it.

But that's a lot of work, and odds are you're going to find that you need the pure sine wave inverter.
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Old 05-17-2015, 08:43 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfwannabee View Post
Thanks for the quick replies and electrical education. Very helpful.

Here's some clarifying information based on your questions and comments. As mentioned in "option 2" of my post, my inverter is a Xantrex RV2012GS, MSW, 2000 watt, 12 volt inverter. For volt/amp measures I am using a Klein Clamp meter, model CL200.

FYI, I took readings again this morning (5/17/2015) and got 106.6VAC and 0.1amps. Battery status was "float charging" which is the condition under which I've taken all readings to date.

I have checked cable connections from the batteries as far as I can trace them toward the inverter and at the inverter itself. All connections are squeaky clean, tight, and visually there are no signs of any issues (overheating, etc.) I opened the transfer switch cabinet and visual inspection is similar. I did not poke around with any meter readings since I'm not comfortable with that yet.

Most of your posts recommend moving to a Pure Sine Wave inverter. Kenmore has not been much help on answering MSW vs PSW inverter. Is there any definitive testing that will answer the question, or do I just install the PSW?

Still looking for your sage advice -- and thankful to have it.
You still haven't described the symptoms that lead you to believe the refrigerator is not working properly on the inverter. If there's no actual problem with the fridge and it's just the voltage readings that you are concerned about, I don't think there's any reason to do anything.

If, OTOH, the fridge actually isn't working properly then the right solution is to swap out the inverter for a PSW model. The batteries are not the problem.
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Old 05-18-2015, 08:08 AM   #21
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Some how this thread has been focusing on the meter used to measure the voltage. Consider this: If the meter used is rated to measure "normal" North America grid voltage it is the correct meter. The problem is with the MSW inverter. It is not meeting the specifications of the grid voltage. Do our manufactures build household equipment to work on the grid? I thing we can all agree yes. It is, then, not surprising when a particular household appliance fails to work correctly on non-grid spec power.

Some residential style refrigerators, according to other threads on this forum, do work fine on the MSW inverter. This particular brand is not. The OP has two choices as I see it. Find a refrigerator brand that will work with his MSW inverter or replace the inverter with a PSW inverter.

Simply my humble opinion expressed here.

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Old 05-18-2015, 11:25 AM   #22
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Like others with knowledge greater than mine have said so intelligently. Your problem is the MSW inverter. Replace it with a PSW inverter and your problem will be solved. Your other electronics in the coach will thank you too...


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Old 05-18-2015, 11:58 AM   #23
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Inverter for new residential refrigerator

Thanks to all who have both educated me and commented on my upgrade issues. Looks like I'll be moving to a pure sine wave inverter (3000W) versus my Xantrex 2000W modified.

Tiffin is installing Magnum 2812 PSW inverters today but also have Xantrex 3000w for those buses that need them in repair, etc. The Xantrex replacement is pretty much a "plug-in-play" using the same remote communication cable with a new remote display. The Magnum requires running a new cable to a new display and a separate set-up if you want Automatic Gen Start. Xantrex has Auto Gen Start built into it.

In talking with Tiffin service they said they had some problems with Xantrex 4-5 years ago and that's why they moved to Magnum in their new coaches. They also commented that Xantrex is still being used in Tiffin buses as well as a number of other manufacturers indicating the problems may have been solved. So, my question is which is the better inverter to install irrespective of the ease of installation. Since the cost is significant I prefer to only do it once.

Thanks for your thoughts.


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Old 05-18-2015, 01:33 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by jerichorick View Post
Some how this thread has been focusing on the meter used to measure the voltage. Consider this: If the meter used is rated to measure "normal" North America grid voltage it is the correct meter. The problem is with the MSW inverter. It is not meeting the specifications of the grid voltage. Do our manufactures build household equipment to work on the grid? I thing we can all agree yes. It is, then, not surprising when a particular household appliance fails to work correctly on non-grid spec power.
I'm sorry, but I respectfully disagree with just about everything you said here.

The meter IS an issue, it is not properly reporting the line voltage. More on that in a moment...

Proper household line voltage is 120 V RMS @ 60 Hz. The key is the "RMS" which stands for Root Mean Square, which is a fancy term for saying "average" voltage. (There's a little more to it because of the voltage going positive and negative, but that's not really important to this discussion.) Normal line voltage is a sine wave, with a peak voltage of about 170 Volts. The thing is that it doesn't stay at that value but is constantly rising and falling. Over a full cycle, the average voltage is 120 Volts RMS.

Now, the MSW inverter is putting out a signal that is also 120 Volts RMS, exactly the same amount of power. The difference is that it is not a sine wave, but a square wave. In order for the RMS (average) voltage to be correct, it is necessary to reduce the peak voltage to about 147 Volts. The peak voltage is different, but the RMS voltage and the amount of power being delivered is exactly the same as sine wave power from the grid. The inverter is indeed meeting the key grid power specifications.

Now, back to the meter: getting an accurate RMS reading with an analog meter is easy: the meter can't move back and forth 60 times a second, so the mechanical inertia serves to average out the peaks and valleys, and it automatically displays an RMS value. However a digital meter has more trouble. There are two ways to do it: the proper way is to take many samples during the half cycle of the AC waveform and average them together, which would result in a "true RMS" reading. But this requires extra hardware and is only found in the more expensive meters. The cheaper way to do it is to get the peak reading (only a cheap diode and small capacitor are needed) and then assume that it's reading a sine wave and dividing that peak reading by the square root of two, and displaying the proper value. For a 120 V sine wave, it gets a peak reading of 170 volts, divides that by 1.414, and displays the correct 120 V. For the MSW inverter, however, it gets a peak reading of 147 Volts, which divided by 1.414 gives 104 Volts, which is not correct because the actual RMS value is 120 Volts.

So, having the correct type of meter is most certainly important if you want an accurate reading. The OP is reporting a reading of about 104 volts from the inverter and asking if the inverter is working properly. It is, it's putting out the proper 120 Volts RMS output that will drive most household appliances and devices, he just can't measure it properly with his meter.

When it comes to the inverter, it is meeting specifications and working as designed, and outputting the proper 120 V RMS at 60 Hz, meeting the grid voltage specifications. There is nothing wrong with the inverter. The issue is that a minority of the appliances out there don't like MSW power, and the OP's refrigerator appears to be one of them. So while the inverter is perfectly good, it needs to be replaced to properly power that particular refrigerator.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfwannabee View Post
So, my question is which is the better inverter to install irrespective of the ease of installation.
I don't think you can go wrong with either inverter. Lots of people have both inverters, and seem to be happy with them.

I have no personal experience with the Xantrex, but I'm very happy with my Magnum. One thing to consider is accessories: the Magnum has several that are easy to add on by just plugging phone cords together. You already mentioned the two most popular: the remote display and the ME_AGS auto gen start. Another that is interesting is their ME_BMK battery monitor kit which gives the same sort of benefit as a TriMetric battery monitor: it lets you determine the actual battery state of charge rather than guessing by voltage, and ties in with the AGS to start the generator when the battery state of charge reaches the specified percentage, and stop the generator when fully charged. (Without the BMK, the AGS triggers on voltage, and can trigger early if there is a temporary heavy load dragging down the battery voltage) and then runs a fixed amount of time before stopping. Another interesting accessory is the ME-MW MagWeb remote monitoring system, which can be handy to keep an eye on power and battery condition while you have the rig in storage. There are several other interesting accessories you can find by poking around the magnumenergy.com web site.

Xantrax may have similar features and options, I don't know. Maybe someone who uses their inverters can speak up.

Even if you don't install these add-ons now, it could be interesting to do so in the future, so I would pick the one with the most flexibility.
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Old 05-19-2015, 09:52 PM   #25
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I'm sorry, but I respectfully disagree with just about everything you said here.

The meter IS an issue, it is not properly reporting the line voltage. More on that in a moment...

Proper household line voltage is 120 V RMS @ 60 Hz. The key is the "RMS" which stands for Root Mean Square, which is a fancy term for saying "average" voltage. (There's a little more to it because of the voltage going positive and negative, but that's not really important to this discussion.) Normal line voltage is a sine wave, with a peak voltage of about 170 Volts. The thing is that it doesn't stay at that value but is constantly rising and falling. Over a full cycle, the average voltage is 120 Volts RMS.

Now, the MSW inverter is putting out a signal that is also 120 Volts RMS, exactly the same amount of power. The difference is that it is not a sine wave, but a square wave. In order for the RMS (average) voltage to be correct, it is necessary to reduce the peak voltage to about 147 Volts. The peak voltage is different, but the RMS voltage and the amount of power being delivered is exactly the same as sine wave power from the grid. The inverter is indeed meeting the key grid power specifications.

Now, back to the meter: getting an accurate RMS reading with an analog meter is easy: the meter can't move back and forth 60 times a second, so the mechanical inertia serves to average out the peaks and valleys, and it automatically displays an RMS value. However a digital meter has more trouble. There are two ways to do it: the proper way is to take many samples during the half cycle of the AC waveform and average them together, which would result in a "true RMS" reading. But this requires extra hardware and is only found in the more expensive meters. The cheaper way to do it is to get the peak reading (only a cheap diode and small capacitor are needed) and then assume that it's reading a sine wave and dividing that peak reading by the square root of two, and displaying the proper value. For a 120 V sine wave, it gets a peak reading of 170 volts, divides that by 1.414, and displays the correct 120 V. For the MSW inverter, however, it gets a peak reading of 147 Volts, which divided by 1.414 gives 104 Volts, which is not correct because the actual RMS value is 120 Volts.

So, having the correct type of meter is most certainly important if you want an accurate reading. The OP is reporting a reading of about 104 volts from the inverter and asking if the inverter is working properly. It is, it's putting out the proper 120 Volts RMS output that will drive most household appliances and devices, he just can't measure it properly with his meter.

When it comes to the inverter, it is meeting specifications and working as designed, and outputting the proper 120 V RMS at 60 Hz, meeting the grid voltage specifications. There is nothing wrong with the inverter. The issue is that a minority of the appliances out there don't like MSW power, and the OP's refrigerator appears to be one of them. So while the inverter is perfectly good, it needs to be replaced to properly power that particular refrigerator.


I don't think you can go wrong with either inverter. Lots of people have both inverters, and seem to be happy with them.

I have no personal experience with the Xantrex, but I'm very happy with my Magnum. One thing to consider is accessories: the Magnum has several that are easy to add on by just plugging phone cords together. You already mentioned the two most popular: the remote display and the ME_AGS auto gen start. Another that is interesting is their ME_BMK battery monitor kit which gives the same sort of benefit as a TriMetric battery monitor: it lets you determine the actual battery state of charge rather than guessing by voltage, and ties in with the AGS to start the generator when the battery state of charge reaches the specified percentage, and stop the generator when fully charged. (Without the BMK, the AGS triggers on voltage, and can trigger early if there is a temporary heavy load dragging down the battery voltage) and then runs a fixed amount of time before stopping. Another interesting accessory is the ME-MW MagWeb remote monitoring system, which can be handy to keep an eye on power and battery condition while you have the rig in storage. There are several other interesting accessories you can find by poking around the magnumenergy.com web site.

Xantrax may have similar features and options, I don't know. Maybe someone who uses their inverters can speak up.

Even if you don't install these add-ons now, it could be interesting to do so in the future, so I would pick the one with the most flexibility.
We could go round and round all day about this. Back in my collage days I spent many hours doing RMS equations. A MSW inverter is dirty power, full of harmonics that many electronic devices just can't handle and a motor will suck the life out of a MSW inverter and it may even kill the motor. Our coaches and RVs are not science labs. They are real life and as every on is saying who has the experience the MSW is good for toasters, light bulbs and cheap radios. Oh yea, that cheap box fan may be one of the exceptions of a motor that will tolerate a MSW.

Bottom line? The meter may not be capable of reading the voltage correctly but the available power source is still the true problem for the OP.

I respect your disagreement but I still disagree with you respectfully.

Rick Y
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Old 05-19-2015, 10:00 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfwannabee View Post
Thanks to all who have both educated me and commented on my upgrade issues. Looks like I'll be moving to a pure sine wave inverter (3000W) versus my Xantrex 2000W modified.

Tiffin is installing Magnum 2812 PSW inverters today but also have Xantrex 3000w for those buses that need them in repair, etc. The Xantrex replacement is pretty much a "plug-in-play" using the same remote communication cable with a new remote display. The Magnum requires running a new cable to a new display and a separate set-up if you want Automatic Gen Start. Xantrex has Auto Gen Start built into it.

In talking with Tiffin service they said they had some problems with Xantrex 4-5 years ago and that's why they moved to Magnum in their new coaches. They also commented that Xantrex is still being used in Tiffin buses as well as a number of other manufacturers indicating the problems may have been solved. So, my question is which is the better inverter to install irrespective of the ease of installation. Since the cost is significant I prefer to only do it once.

Thanks for your thoughts.


Please give Magnum a call about that inverter. I think it has a genset start feature but I could be wrong. I have that model in this coach but it is from 2010 so things could have changed. I am very pleased with the Magnum. It even assists when I am on 30A service by kicking in to take up the loads it is connected to when the 30A is maxed out. I have seen as much as 18A donation from it during these times. Great inverter. And my AGM's seem to be happy too.

Rick Y
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Old 05-19-2015, 11:06 PM   #27
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We could go round and round all day about this. Back in my collage days I spent many hours doing RMS equations.
I respect your disagreement but I still disagree with you respectfully.

Rick Y
I respectfully ask why you were doing RMS equations in your "collage days", which I'd guess is "where the artwork is made from an assemblage of different forms, thus creating a new whole."



We're 26 posts into this thread. In post #2 I pointed out his inverter was MSW and linked to his specific manual. Folks continued to focus on batteries and low voltage from the inverter, so in post #10 I explained why the MSW voltage readings were 'low.' (newmar10 was a faster typer by 5 min.)

The OP was asked to explain what he meant by the refrigerator "didn't run well" on the inverter. He hasn't explained this yet, but boy do we know of some folks knowledge of inverters, meters, and AC wave theory!

It's been verified by many folks in many threads, some 120 v A/C appliances, computers, even electric blankets, don't work properly on modified sine wave power. The OP described the classic clues, the fridge ran on shore power and generator power but not on the inverter power. The variable: the modified sine wave output of the inverter.
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Old 05-20-2015, 08:34 AM   #28
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I respectfully ask why you were doing RMS equations in your "collage days", which I'd guess is "where the artwork is made from an assemblage of different forms, thus creating a new whole."



We're 26 posts into this thread. In post #2 I pointed out his inverter was MSW and linked to his specific manual. Folks continued to focus on batteries and low voltage from the inverter, so in post #10 I explained why the MSW voltage readings were 'low.' (newmar10 was a faster typer by 5 min.)

The OP was asked to explain what he meant by the refrigerator "didn't run well" on the inverter. He hasn't explained this yet, but boy do we know of some folks knowledge of inverters, meters, and AC wave theory!

It's been verified by many folks in many threads, some 120 v A/C appliances, computers, even electric blankets, don't work properly on modified sine wave power. The OP described the classic clues, the fridge ran on shore power and generator power but not on the inverter power. The variable: the modified sine wave output of the inverter.
My point exactly. Who really cares that some exotic test equipment is needed to read a MSW output correctly. The thing is useless for the OP application. The rest of this discussion is simply chest beating in my humble opinion.

The OP has made a wise choice in spite of the smoke screen we have put up (me included).

The battery size could now become an issue only if he is off shore or generator power longer than the bank is designed for with the load he presents to it. New topic and possibly a new thread.

Now I look forward to the results of the work the OP is paying to have done. I am confident that his refrigerator will be a happy camper now, as will the OP.

Happy trails

Rick Y
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