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Configuration A

Configuration A involves the use of an inverter in conjunction with a vehicle electrical system connected to the electrical loads by various means.  These are described below using a number of sub-configurations, depending on the connection arrangement.

  1. Configuration A1 - extension cords only, open window/door
  2. Configuration A2 - small multicircuit transfer switch, open window/door

Configuration A1 is usually the least cost arrangement for providing backup power during an outage.  It relies on a vehicle generator to provide 12 volts dc to operate an inverter which converts this dc to 110-120 volt ac.  The smaller inverters come with a plug which fits into your vehicle lighter socket.  Larger units require a more solid connection directly to the vehicle battery.  The ac power can be fed to electrical loads and small appliances using one or more plug-in extension cords through any convenient window or door.

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Advantages of this configuration include:

Some limitations of this arrangement are:

 


Configuration A2 is also a low cost arrangement for providing backup power during an outage.  It relies on a vehicle generator to provide 12 volts dc to operate an inverter which converts this dc to 110-120 volt ac.  Larger inverters require a connection directly to the vehicle battery.  In this configuration the ac power is fed to electrical loads and appliances using a manual transfer switch.  This type of transfer switch is easily installed by any electrician without pulling the electric meter.  The transfer switch unit has single pole two position switches permanently wired to the preselected building circuits that require backup power.  The cord between the inverter and the transfer switch is routed through any convenient window or door.

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Advantages of this configuration include:

Some limitations of this arrangement are:

Note inverters that have GFI protection may shut down when connected in this configuration.  This is because the inverter senses the neutral-to-ground bond in the building load center panel as a ground fault.  To eliminate this use an inverter without GFI protection or lift the ground connection in the cable between the inverter and the transfer switch.  Also, many low cost inverters are not designed to have their ac neutral tied to ground.  Doing so will blow the inverter input fuses and usually fry the internal field effect transistors (FETs).  Using an isolation transformer at the inverter output will eliminate both of these issues.  BEFORE PURCHASING AN INVERTER THAT WILL BE USED IN THIS CONFIGURATION (A2) PLEASE CONTACT US AND WE CAN OFFER YOU A SOLUTION.