Anybody have a POWER INVERTER for emergency use installed on their Prius?

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Accessories & Modifications' started by ski.dive, Dec 21, 2012.

  1. ski.dive

    ski.dive Active Member

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    I just purchsed a 2000w inverter that I plan to install on my Prius in case of a power failure.

    With this inverter, I can run this inverter hooked up to my 12v battery & I can power some of my appliances at home in case of a power failure.

    Anybody else that has a power inverter on their Prius?
     
  2. donalmilligan089

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    Yes I have one though not that big (1500) and I ue it for all too frquent power outages here in sw va. You should have a No. 12 extrnsion cord toe extend to a multi puug for different appliances I use mine for lights and fridge. Does not opperate my tv properly tho.
     
  3. Corwyn

    Corwyn Energy Curmudgeon

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    There are a number of threads on this. Try the search function.
     
  4. bobeast

    bobeast Junior Member

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    The math doesn't work. A 2000 watt inverter at full load will draw about 208 amps from that dinky little Prius (12v) battery.

    If you really need the full 2000 watts, plan on stacking 5 or six batteries in parallel and using hella thick wires. Otherwise you might want to consider lowering your ambitions in terms of loading. Either that or look into one of the Prius generator kits that hook into the drive batteries (at much higher cost)
     
  5. ftl

    ftl Explicator

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    There's a 100A fuse in the line from the DC-DC converter to the battery. Probably best not to exceed 80A to the inverter, just about 1KW input power; with losses, a little less on the AC side.
     
  6. ski.dive

    ski.dive Active Member

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    UPDATE:
    Hooked up the 2000w inverter to the 12v Prius battery.
    This morning I pluged in a 50ft. extension cord from the inverter and pluged it in my double door refrigerator .
    The Prius along with the inverter have been running the refrigerator now for over 7 hours, no issues at all and minimal fuel use.
    Advise...Purchase your inverter now, hook it up and test it,so when the power goes out next time,you already know what you are doing.
    I'm ready for the next power outage!!!
     
  7. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    Yea a 1000 watt power inverter is the limit that the car can handle without incident... But it more has to do with what you're running on the inverter. Some appliances will draw a huge load when they first start up and it'd really suck to damage your car's electronics in this way because there's just so many systems that can go wrong if the load is more than the car can handle. You might be able to get more watts by tapping into the high voltage battery with a more expensive inverter system, but again, you do so at your own risk!
     
  8. ftl

    ftl Explicator

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    I'd strongly recommend an in-line fuse on the 12V connection to the inverter, otherwise too much of a load on the AC side will almost certainly blow the car's DC-DC fuse.
     
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  9. Corwyn

    Corwyn Energy Curmudgeon

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    I got an opportunity to use my "cargenator" (as my brother-in-law called it), this weekend. However, the reason was that we had a windstorm which knocked out the power. Sadly, I mostly wasn't able to use it because the same windstorm dropped a rather large tree such that it blocked the door and we couldn't get out to hook up the Prius...

    All is well now.
     
  10. ski.dive

    ski.dive Active Member

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    What size fuse do you recomend, 100amp or 150amp?
     
  11. ftl

    ftl Explicator

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    My C has a 100 amp fuse in the car's DC-DC circuit, so you would definitely not want to exceed this rating. An 80A fuse in the 12V feed to the inverter would probably be OK.

    Check your manual to make sure the fuse in other models is the same. Here's the page for the C:

    Prius-C-DC-DC-Fuse.jpg
     
  12. Britprius

    Britprius Senior Member

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    A 75 or 80 amp circuit breaker would be a better device to use than a fuse . The fuse you would need to use for safety would be a high speed semiconductor fuse and these are expensive. Normal fuses can take either to much current or to long a time to blow. Circuit breakers trip faster at lower currents and are quicker and safer to reset they are also no more expensive than a quality fuse.

    A circuit breaker is also a simple way of turning the unit on and off.

    John (Britprius)
     
  13. windstrings

    windstrings Certified Prius Breeder

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    You need to keep the car in ready mode so your not pulling solely on the tiny 12 volt battery.

    That being said, the cars inverter takes the 201.6 volts from the traction battery and brings it to 12 for accessories.

    You are pulling off the accessories circuit.

    Problem is the traction battery inverter is limited to 1400.00 watts "last I checked" on gen2. "2300 for Gen 3 removed... Error"
    2300 watt inverter on a 2010 Prius? [Archive] - CleanMPG Forums

    It would stink to hurt your prius inverter.... Just mind your total wattage and the temp of your wires under your heaviest loads.

    Sustained heavy loads close to the inverters max may be dangerous.
    It does have cooling, but I don't know how much abuse it can take for how long.
    Seems the big issue is heat.
    Alan...
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  14. ftl

    ftl Explicator

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    An awful lot of confused posters on that thread! Good luck getting even 1400 watts from the DC-DC converter, which has a 100 amp fuse in its feed to the 12V battery. Pushing that to the limit, 12V at 100A is 1200 watts max available to run the inverter. Given that the inverter isn't 100% efficient, it might support a load of between 1000 and 1100 watts before the car's fuse blows.
     
  15. windstrings

    windstrings Certified Prius Breeder

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    Wow, your right, I totally misread that... "not" 2300 watts......

    Alan...
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  16. woodenpaddler

    woodenpaddler Junior Member

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  17. sturgidson

    sturgidson Junior Member

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    Hey, thanks for this writeup. It is the best recent write up I've seen that's given me actual helpful guidance. While there are many threads about the inverters and the process of installation, there aren't any actual comprehensive guides. I appreciate it.
     
  18. Randy B

    Randy B Junior Member

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    ConVerdant.biz may be able to help too.
     
  19. vertex

    vertex Active Member

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    I have done this also with a 1500 watt inverter. I connected directly to the battery, you get the 100 amp capacity of the 12 volt inverter + battery current. I recommend changing your battery if you have the OEM one to a yellow top or a regular battery with high discharge current capability. What you need the full capacity from your inverter is the inrush current, which you are obviously supplying to your fridge. I ran my whole house with this setup when Sandy visited last year.
     
  20. Randy Bryan

    Randy Bryan New Member

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    For more details on inverter comparison and use, you might visit the converdant website to download the Plug-Out brochure and read the FAQ.
    Putting 1500 or 2000 watt inverter on the 12v battery is not recommended.
     
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