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Solar inverter -- shore power question

TenOC
Nomad
Nomad
I am trying to understand a residential refrigerator with solar panels. When I connect to full hookup does the refrigerator continue to run through the inverter or does it bypass the inverter and connect to shore power only? Let me see if I can make my question a little clear. Does the shore power charge the battery than the current flows from the battery to the inverter to the refrigerator? Or when connected to shore power is the inverter automatically disconnected from the circuit.


I assume that when connected to shore power, (or a portable generator) the shore power not the solar panels is the primary method charging the battery bank. I also assume that when towing down the road the tow truck alternator and the solar panels are each charging the battery back.
Please give me enough troubles, uncertainty, problems, obstacles and STRESS so that I do not become arrogant, proud, and smug in my own abilities, and enough blessings and good times that I realize that someone else is in charge of my life.

Travel Photos
7 REPLIES 7

time2roll
Explorer II
Explorer II
TenOC wrote:
I assume that when connected to shore power, (or a portable generator) the shore power not the solar panels is the primary method charging the battery bank. I also assume that when towing down the road the tow truck alternator and the solar panels are each charging the battery back.
Generally this is correct depending on equipment. Having multiple charging sources is not an issue.

pianotuna
Nomad II
Nomad II
Hi TenOC,

Start with an energy audit.

The fridge may need a fairly large solar installation, and a good size battery bank.

Do you still have an RV at the moment?
Regards, Don
My ride is a 28 foot Class C, 256 watts solar, 556 amp-hours of Telcom jars, 3000 watt Magnum hybrid inverter, Sola Basic Autoformer, Microair Easy Start.

Cptnvideo
Nomad
Nomad
We full time, do a fair amount of boondocking, have solar and a residential fridge. All 110 VAC circuits are tied directly to the inverter.
To answer your question, it depends on the inverter. Ours is an inverter/charger with pass thru. So all 110 circuits are tied to the inverter and when on shore power, the inverter passes the shore power thru. (Our OEM converter is unplugged, solar is the only thing charging the batteries unless I turn on the charger portion of the inverter - which is hardly ever.)
We have an after market Whirlpool 20cf fridge and we draw a little over 200ah overnight while boondocking (TV, fridge, lights, microwave, etc), so just make sure you have enough battery capacity if you go with the rig you are looking at.
Bill & Linda, 2019 Ram Laramie 3500 dually 4x4 diesel, Hensley BD5 hitch, 2022 Grand Design Solitude 378MBS, 1600 watts solar, Victron 150/100 MPPT controller, GoPower 3kw inverter/charger, 5 SOK 206AH LFP batteries for 1030 ah

TenOC
Nomad
Nomad
pianotuna wrote:


What make and model of inverter do you have?


I do not have any solar now. But, the new to us RV that we are thinking about buying has a residential refrigerator. We do a lot of Boondocking or dry camping and the refrigerator may be a deal beaker.
Please give me enough troubles, uncertainty, problems, obstacles and STRESS so that I do not become arrogant, proud, and smug in my own abilities, and enough blessings and good times that I realize that someone else is in charge of my life.

Travel Photos

pianotuna
Nomad II
Nomad II
TenOC My inverter includes a built in autoformer. Many other inverters include a transfer switch.

I don't love transfer switches.

My solar 'plays well' with shore power, generator power and power from alternator via a dc to DC charger.

What make and model of inverter do you have?
Regards, Don
My ride is a 28 foot Class C, 256 watts solar, 556 amp-hours of Telcom jars, 3000 watt Magnum hybrid inverter, Sola Basic Autoformer, Microair Easy Start.

opnspaces
Navigator
Navigator
Said a different way as Agwill.

When hooked to shore power the inverter is out of the loop and the shore power runs the refrigerator.

When not on shore power the batteries feed the inverter that powers the refrigerator.
.
2001 Suburban 4x4. 6.0L, 4.10 3/4 ton **** 2005 Jayco Jay Flight 27BH **** 1986 Coleman Columbia Popup

agwill
Explorer
Explorer
When hooked up to shore power on most RV's the power goes to a transfer switch which powers the converter that makes 12 volts to charge the battery. 110 volt ac is sent to everything that uses 110 volt ac. When not hooked up to 110 volt ac the solar panels are used to charge the battery. The battery is then connected to the inverter and produces 110 volt ac to supply 110 volt ac power to the ac outlets and fridge.
al