DR3624 configuration

10 Posts
Jul 14, 2004 07:11 pm
DR3624 configuration

LAST EDITED ON Jul-24-04 AT 04:02 PM (EST)

Is it possible to disable the bypass relay on the DR series inverters, and if so, does the inverter part of the DR continue to operate when AC power is applied?  

I have an automatic bypass relay built into my system that is rated @ 100A, and I am installing twin DR3624 inverters to back up my home during long outages in the winter.  As the generator is far smaller than the inverter startup capability, but would produce enough power as a whole, (I peak out at around 100 kWH during the cold, Michigan winters when I run my furnace) I would like to use it strictly as a power source to charge the batteries, and let the inverters handle the real drains when I come home from driving truck.  It's during these periods that I do laundry, take showers, run my dryer, etc.  

Jul 17, 2004 05:38 am
Re: DR3624 configuration

I dont quite understand the question. I think what your asking is, can you seperate the charger from the inveter. In this way, you want to use the DR3624's to charge the battery while the gen/set is running but at the same time get your ac power from the inverter instead of it passing through from the gen/set. Is this correct?
Have you asked Trace engineering?
If this is correct, then I would tend to believe that the batteries would still get drawn way down, because if the gen/set cant provide the amount of ac power that the inverter can, how can it replace what the inverter draws from the batteries to make that same amount of ac power?

10 Posts
Jul 24, 2004 02:56 pm
Re: DR3624 configuration

LAST EDITED ON Jul-24-04 AT 04:12 PM (EST)

LAST EDITED ON Jul-24-04 AT 04:07�PM (EST)

LAST EDITED ON Jul-24-04 AT 03:25�PM (EST)

I just read what I wrote earlier, and thank God you can understand jibberish.

You have the right idea, HOWEVER...

 What I am attempting is to eventually use the DR's as primary power (eventually - other elements are in the works) with the gen-set for battery charging.  For now, if I can get the DR's set up the way I want, I can use a 30A relay to switch the battery charging function from the grid to the gen-set whenever the gen-set is started.  Thus, the DR's will be short-term backup (up to several days) for the grid until I start the gen-set when I get home.  Once started, the gen-set will continue running and charging the batteries until either they are fully charged, or the grid comes back on line.  At that point it will shut down.

 The power drain from the DR's will be continuous whenever I'm off the grid (i.e. during power outages), but not constant.  For the most part, I don't use very much power...mostly just the furnace blower motor and the occasional repressuring of the well.  When I'm gone, all I want the system to do is to protect the trailer from freezing in the winter and to keep the well primed.  
 However, when I'm home for several hours (or on the weekend), I'm doing laundry (both washer and dryer) as well as showering.  If the power goes out during this time, I need a larger output capability to keep everything up and running until I finish showering or whatever activities I'm involved in.
 Remember, I drive truck.  It is often the case that I leave for work immediately after completing these activities.
 If I have significantly drained the batteries, and the grid is still off line, the batteries have to be charged back up,  and the generator will handle this during the low power drain period that I am gone.  
 The primary advantage of the system using a smaller gen-set is that there is far less wasted energy going out the exhaust as would be the case with a larger gen-set.  I know several people who use large gen-sets of 7 KW and more, and when the power goes out, their fuel usage is horrendous.  It is far less expensive to operate a DR @ 80% efficiency than to use a gen-set at 10% efficiency.

 No, I haven't asked Trace.  Every time I talk to some company about modifying some of their equipment, they freak out, try to dissuade me and then never do answer my question.  After that, I usually find someone who has already pulled off what I want to do, so I figured I would forego their inevitable freaking out.  
 Besides, it looks as if Exceltech has solved my dilemma even as we communicate.  They have a brand new true sine wave inverter system that is n+1 expandable up to 20 KW on 120v single phase and 40 KW on 240v bi-phase (what a strange term).  Unfortunately, it's a bit more salty.  Oh, well...

20 Posts
Jul 25, 2004 01:23 pm
Re: DR3624 configuration

If you haven't already bought them I would strongly suggest the SW line.  Lets say you have a smaller genset, you can set the inverters to pull only so much power from the genset.  And best of all it can either charge the batteries or pass through to the load.  So say you have a genset that can supply 20 amps and an inverter that can supply 20 amps.  Now if you have a 10 amp load on the output of the inverter the genset will be passing 10 amps though the inverter to the load and charging the battery bank at with the other 10 amps.  Now say the load drops to 1 amp, then you have 1 amp passing through and 19 charging the batteries.  Now say you have a 30 amp load, you have the 20 amps from the genset passing though and the inverter uses the batteries to add the additional 10 amps so you can power a 30 amp load.  Of course the inverters output can be used with anything that I know of, while when I had my DR2412 some things really didn't like the waveform (motors use between 10 and 25% more power) and it smoked some of my controls.  Also the SW line can tell the genset to start at a give voltage and then tell it to shut off again later.  So you can set the inverter to start the genset if it sees a load larger then 15 amps to help power the load and set quite times that it won�t start the genset unless necessary.  Also when your genset is running you are getting the most power out of it so it can run for a shorter amount of time overall.

In my case I set the SW�s to only pull about 80% of the continuous rater power on the genset so I can�t overload it and it doesn�t run as hot.

10 Posts
Jul 30, 2004 02:06 pm
Re: DR3624 configuration

LAST EDITED ON Jul-30-04 AT 02:11 PM (EST)

 Thank you for the power usage information.  It looks as if that's the route I'll have to go.
 It's a little more salty than I had originally intended to go, but it's everything I need.  Although I won't be able to get quite as much initial punch, it is upgradable, so I can get more power later.

 Not only that, but the ability to auto-start the generator under such a wide variety of situations makes this the choice I should have started with in the first place.  It's just unfortunate that I had already spent the time and some of the money to design an auto-start based on mechanical sealed relays.  It's a little complex, but rock solid.  Maybe I'll keep it aside for just-in-case.

 By the way, I would like to thank you, Brock, and the other gentleman(?), Sunour for your assistance and your thought provoking questions regarding this situation.  I will try to keep you posted.  

Thank you - Curtiss A. Lonsbury


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