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Installing a power inverter in my car/dash, saftey precautions?

Installing a power inverter in my car/dash, saftey precautions?


Old 07-17-05, 12:40 PM
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Installing a power inverter in my car/dash, saftey precautions?

As you can see
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I'm putting a 120vAC inverter in my car so I can have power outlets easily accessable in the cabin of my truck.

I was wondering, what precautions should I take? The unit itself does have a safety overload circuit in case a friend dumps coffee in the outlet by accident. But it wouldn't hurt to add another in-line 110 volt fuse that will blow at just above what the maximum load is.

I was wondering, which wire for the 120vAC outlet should I put the fuse on? The black (hot?) wire, correct? I want to be redundant in protection because since I am taking the inverter apart and extending the wires... it's always good to be safe and sure. I wouldn't want a cut to short the hot wire to the car and make the battery explode.

I think I'm going to put the inverter as close to the battery as I can, but I'll have to do some water testing (spraying waterhose up in to the engine from under the vehicle) to try and find the driest area shielded from rainy potholes.

Do you think I should also add a fuse between the battery and the inverter? I wouldn't whttp://www.overclockers.com/tips1201/image008.jpgant the inverter to somehow get wet and malfunction drawing insane amounts of power from the battery directly.

I've seen a 5000 watt inverter short the safety circuit and not allow a shut off. This caused a flame to shoot out of the unit, so the fuses wont be a bad idea. Are there any other precautions you guys would do to make this as safe as possible from disaster?

Perhaps when I get this all done, I could write an article with pictures for doityourself.com
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Old 07-17-05, 09:06 PM
Join Date: Aug 2004
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I would defiintely

fuse the battery wires-as you said, just in case. I was thinking of something similair to the fuses used for wiring car stereo amps.

In AC house wiring, black is your "hot" wire and white is nuetral...kind of the opposite of DC wiring, so you want to fuse/breaker the black wire of an AC system. If possible, I'd consider adding GFCI protection as well. Maybe one of the units that are designed to wire into an appliance cord?

I hope this helped!
Old 07-18-05, 09:34 AM
Join Date: Jun 2002
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I wouldnt put an inverter under the hood, too much dirt/water. I assume the secondary wiring is cord and plug connected,, why would you want to take it apart to extend it? Remember with inverters,,, they will be a large draw on batteries and hard work on alternators, if all this isnt heavy duty you are asking for problems. A 2000 watt inverter can pull upwards of 100A + at times depending on applied load, it will cook a regular car alternator.
Old 07-18-05, 09:40 AM
Join Date: Jun 2002
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