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  1. #1

    Default Info on setting up a generator/inverter hybrid van

    I recently bought a used grooming van which has an Onan generator. My old van had an inverter system and I like that. I would like to do a hybrid system. My mechanic has limited experience with inverters. Does anyone know where I could get some info on how to set up the inverter so that the batteries get a charge when the generator is going. Does anyone have any diagrams or know of any websites that shows how that is done. Also, how many batteries should I need to run the smaller stuff? I think I want to use AGM batteries. Due you need a specific charger if you use AGM batteries? I used lead acid batteries last time. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Northern NV
    Posts
    4,133

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    Easy route is get an inverter/charger and plug it in to the generator.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    666

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    Quote Originally Posted by dlt8958 View Post
    I recently bought a used grooming van which has an Onan generator. My old van had an inverter system and I like that. I would like to do a hybrid system. My mechanic has limited experience with inverters. Does anyone know where I could get some info on how to set up the inverter so that the batteries get a charge when the generator is going. Does anyone have any diagrams or know of any websites that shows how that is done. Also, how many batteries should I need to run the smaller stuff? I think I want to use AGM batteries. Due you need a specific charger if you use AGM batteries? I used lead acid batteries last time. Thanks!
    We retrofit vans at Teknopet.
    You can get enough information to do it on your own if you spend some time online, RV sites and this site have tons of info.

    Asking how many batteries you need to run the smaller stuff is not an answerable question until you know the loads the "smaller stuff" impose and the time you will run them.

    If using AGM's you need a charger that can accommodate AGM voltages and has a temp sensor so you don't overcharge and cook them.
    Most chargers with a temp sensor have Lead acid and AGM settings.


    UD

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    New Mexico
    Posts
    1,406

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    I just want to give a shout out to UD and Irish and some other mobilers that do an awesome job of help here.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Southern California
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    666

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    Quote Originally Posted by absolutebichon View Post
    I just want to give a shout out to UD and Irish and some other mobilers that do an awesome job of help here.
    Thanks, there are lots of really generous people here, its a neat place where most get along pretty well.

    UD

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    1,953

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    Thanks. I try my best and don't like to see anyone make the same mistakes I have made over the years.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Western Washington
    Posts
    1,272

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    Quote Originally Posted by cockerlvr View Post
    Easy route is get an inverter/charger and plug it in to the generator.
    Ahh I understand that makes sense.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Socal
    Posts
    1,487

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    So does an inverter system then have the effect of an alternator

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    666

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    Quote Originally Posted by 10muddypaws View Post
    So does an inverter system then have the effect of an alternator
    Only if the inverter setup is designed to use the alternator to charge the bank - If not then no.

    IF yes then every time you start the vehicle it will use the alternator to charge the bank at whatever speeds and feeds the battery can take averaged with what the alternator puts out at a given RPM- i.e. idling through traffic not a lot, running down the freeway a bunch.

    that help?

    UD

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Alabama
    Posts
    667

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    Quote Originally Posted by 10muddypaws View Post
    So does an inverter system then have the effect of an alternator

    No ,an automotive alternator is a three phase generator.An inverter is a switching inductor that converts dc into ac to run ac equipment. An automotive alternator converts three phase ac into dc to run dc equipment and charge a vehicles starting battery. There are many types of alternators for specific applications beyond the standard OEM. There are even dual voltage output alternators. The inverter though is simply a way to convert dc back into ac using storage batteries for a source of dc having nothing to do with actually being or acting like a generator.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    543

    Default

    I would love to take a class to understand all of this.

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