Originally Posted by Hugh R
Thanks for the advise. I have a new 2013 RV and don't really want to hack into it to run new power lines and outlets. like I stated, I have two TVs and a wi-fi HD transmitter/receiver between the two. I can't easily get to the 110 volt outlets for them. I'll think about options, its only once in a while that I can't get shore power or run the generator after 8 or 10 PM.
What about a gel battery and an inverter plugged in directly to the house power cord with a battery charger to charge the battery manually during the day? I could put the inverter outside the cabinet for cooling and charge it when it needs it, maybe a few times per year? I understand that the house lights and other electrical stuff will "think" its connected to regular shore power, but if I turn the fridge to gas only, I can't think of what else would suck much power while watching TV at night for an hour or two. Not running the A/C of course.
Not looking to go cheap, but simple for the 2-3 times per year I might want to watch TV and can't use shore power or the generator.
Why bother with the gel battery? You can wire the inverter to the house battery, and still plug your shore cable into the inverter.
If you do use this arrangement, you just make certain that you turn off the circuit breaker to the converter before turning on the inverter. Of course,sooner or later, you will forget. There is a simple solution.
I wired my inverter this way, but with an additional wrinkle. I connected the coil of a normally closed relay to the inverter output. Then, I routed the power to the converter through the contacts. Now, turning on the inverter, automatically cuts power to the converter. This kind of relay with 120 VAC coil and contacts rated for 10 amps or so, can usually be found for under $10. The relay coil draws very little current, so it can be situated close to the converter and connected to the inverter with a long run of light wire, so long as the insulation is rated for 120 V.
Although, not really required, I wired a red neon pilot light across the relay coil and a green neon pilot light across the converter. Now, red means the inverter is on and green means shore power. Both dark means no AC power.