Can I use it as portable generator

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Accessories and Modifications' started by sumguy, Jun 24, 2017.

  1. sumguy

    sumguy Junior Member

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    Most of my lawn equipment is corded and I have to take care of an abandoned property now. Should I buy a portable generator or is there an option to run stuff with an inverter from the Prius? Lawn mower, trimmer, chain saw, hedger are all probably 13A or less and using 12ga 150ft extension cord. Any information is appreciated
     
  2. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    Here is an example, you will want to clamp it to the battery under the hatch. amazon.com/dp/B00T93K9KU

    Always be in READY when you use it.
     
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  3. tankyuong

    tankyuong Senior Member

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    or get cordless tools
     
  4. Sam Spade

    Sam Spade Senior Member

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    My advice is: NO DON'T TRY IT.

    The 12 V system of the Prius, regardless of model, was NOT designed for that kind of current load.

    P.S. what would it cost you to have the power turned back ON at the property, assuming that there is a house there ?
    The ongoing monthly charges might be less than you think.......if you make sure that NOTHING else is drawing power except your tools.

    P.P.S. Leaving an abandoned house closed up with no A/C or ventilation can create a mold problem that in some cases can render the structure worthless over time.
     
  5. sumguy

    sumguy Junior Member

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    I like the idea of cordless but already had these. Replacement batteries are kind of expensive, what kind of life cycle is expected on something like a lawn mower?
    idk, but turning the power on may be an option I didn't consider.
    The house is very old in a bad neighborhood. Built in the late 1800s, fire in the 70s had some interior remodeled cheaply (ex crawlspace under bathtub, no floor). no AC/furnace, roof leaks, exterior paint peeling, no electric upstairs or bathroom, only a few outlets each in living room and kitchen. I remember extension cords going to lower/upper bedrooms, and bathroom. I'm not sure how sound the foundation or frame is either. Was talking to them over the phone and could it here it rumble/moan/grind nonstop for 10-20 seconds.
     
  6. Prodigyplace

    Prodigyplace Senior Member

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    I thought most users here recommended no larger than a 1000 watt inverter for the Prius. I would hate for somebody to use one double the size and mess up the vehicle electronics.
     
  7. Kevin_Denver

    Kevin_Denver Active Member

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    Correct, the high voltage DC to 12V DC inverter in the Prius has a 100A fuse, and supplies around 80A max. When the car is on with all accessories off, it takes about 20A to run all of the ECUs. This leaves ~60A capacity, which works out to about 800W. Subtracting conversion losses for a power inverter, running more than about 700W continuous will result in draining the 12V battery.

    13A, 120V power equipment will pull twice that amount continuously, and even more when starting. If you have a 2000W inverter you could run this equipment, but only for a very short period without draining your 12V battery below the ~80% mark where you start to shorten the life of your lead acid battery significantly.

    Basically there's nothing wrong with using an inverter of more than 1000W, so long as you don't pull more than 700W except short term (I'd recommend not more than a few minutes max) with enough time between for the battery to be recharged. For this reason, most don't bother with more than a 1000W power inverter (for some additional headroom vs. 700W and ability to start devices with in-rush current, ie anything with a motor).

    Trimmer, chain saw, and hedger are all probably possible to use for a few minutes with time between, but I definitely wouldn't try to mow your whole lawn with power drawn from the Prius!
     
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