LeftieBiker
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Re: Using the Leaf for power in a Blackout: MY "Leaf to Home

Tue Dec 03, 2013 7:29 am

Has anyone used a more 'square wave' inverter with a Leaf? Northern Tool had a surprisingly well-reviewed 2000/4000 watt inverter on sale this week, and I grabbed one. The idea is to use it to run just a sump pump and lights, or a couple of electric radiators and lights. I hope to find used #2 or #0 AWG jumper cables for a truck and use them to connect as needed. (I know about not using the negative terminal.)This inverter tends to stall unless the input side has super-large wires, but I only plan on using 1000-1200 watts of its capacity anyway.
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KillaWhat
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Re: Using the Leaf for power in a Blackout: MY "Leaf to Home

Tue Dec 03, 2013 1:08 pm

Has anyone used a more 'square wave' inverter with a Leaf?
I went into this wanting to output the cleanest AC I could.
Square wave units are not that much less $$.

So many things now have sensitive microprocessor control circuitry, and are really easily fried by square waves.

I think my toaster has a processor, and I know my oil heater has a solid state timer in it.

I suppose a sump pump, or a filament type light bulb will eat what you feed it, but I didn't want to limit myself in case I wanted to power up something to entertain the Kids that says SONY on the side of it :D
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LeftieBiker
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Re: Using the Leaf for power in a Blackout: MY "Leaf to Home

Tue Dec 03, 2013 3:08 pm

If I had found a 1000 watt PSW unit for $150 shipped (the price of the 2kw unit) I would have gotten it, believe me. We're used to dealing with a square wave gas generator; the Leaf seems like a much quieter, cleaner alternative.
Scarlet Ember 2018 Leaf SL W/ Pro Pilot
2009 Vectrix VX-1 W/18 Leaf modules, & 3 EZIP E-bicycles.
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PLEASE don't PM me with Leaf questions. Just post in the topic that seems most appropriate.

DarthPuppy
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Re: Using the Leaf for power in a Blackout: MY "Leaf to Home

Tue Dec 03, 2013 3:46 pm

Okay, I now have all the parts needed (inverter, breaker, and short distance connecting wires (4 AWG - as called for in the inverter manual) and grounding wire.)

However, reading the inverter instruction book and viewing some youtubes, it would appear that I'm supposed to connect the red cables to the red battery terminal and the black cable to the black battery terminal. The ground wire then goes from the inverter to the ground on the vehicle.

But looking at your pictures, it looks like you are connecting the black cable from the inverter to ground, not the battery and citing Phil's law about not connecting ground to the battery. Did I miss the statement or picture showing a connection of the black cable to the battery? Or is this something that is problematic despite the diagrams in the inverter owners manual.

I'm an accountant, not an engineer and would prefer to make sure I've got this right before making the connections.
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KillaWhat
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Re: Using the Leaf for power in a Blackout: MY "Leaf to Home

Thu Dec 05, 2013 11:53 am

NEVER NEVER connect anything to the negative 12V terminal on a Leaf.
Never EVER!

Connect your add-on 120VAC Inverter's negative to the nicest chassis ground you can find, and in a 2011 / 2012's case, that's the pretty one right next to where Nissan tied their ground, as you can see in some of the pictures.

The short "accountant" reason is that the Negative battery terminal on the Leaf is "smart", and is tied into the regulator system.
Not good to mess with.

You want a big ol'e stupid ground.

Good luck, and tell us how it works out.
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ebill3
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Re: Using the Leaf for power in a Blackout: MY "Leaf to Home

Thu Dec 05, 2013 1:32 pm

KillaWhat wrote:NEVER NEVER connect anything to the negative 12V terminal on a Leaf.
Never EVER!
Understand not connecting a load to -12, but how about a battery minder/tender? That shouldn't be a problem, should it?

Of course, if jump starting the LEAF, then chassis ground is proper; same as an ICE.
All electric - red LEAF, green Tesla S. No ICE.

KillaWhat
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Re: Using the Leaf for power in a Blackout: MY "Leaf to Home

Thu Dec 05, 2013 5:13 pm

ebill3 wrote:
KillaWhat wrote:NEVER NEVER connect anything to the negative 12V terminal on a Leaf.
Never EVER!
Understand not connecting a load to -12, but how about a battery minder/tender? That shouldn't be a problem, should it?

Of course, if jump starting the LEAF, then chassis ground is proper; same as an ICE.
I would not ever connect anything to the Negative terminal on a Leaf.
No reason to.
Why risk it.

I use my Anderson connector output as my battery tender input.
As a rule, I never connect to the battery negative on ANY car.
If I jump my ICE, I connect to the chassis.
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DarthPuppy
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Re: Using the Leaf for power in a Blackout: MY "Leaf to Home

Thu Dec 05, 2013 9:28 pm

Ah. Thanks!

And while I will assemble the parts and have them ready to go, I don't plan to make the connections to the Leaf until it is necessary. It really is contingency planning in the event of an extended power outage. My rooftop solar has an isolated outlet so I can charge the Leaf during the day even when the grid is down. Then I could tap the battery at night if needed.
Last edited by DarthPuppy on Thu Dec 05, 2013 9:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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DarthPuppy
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Re: Using the Leaf for power in a Blackout: MY "Leaf to Home

Thu Dec 05, 2013 9:41 pm

So for us Leaf owners, a guide like the one below is dangerous.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6e2yWM62NM0" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I did a search on Youtube for the same concept for a Leaf or ev and didn't find any. Had I not read this blog and noted the inconsistency with the other info I found, I guess I would have really messed up.

Perhaps it would be a good idea for one of the guys here who has a successful implementation to do a youtube version. (I'm not qualified - kind of like the blind leading the blind.) It might save an ev (or an ev owner) from an early demise.
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LeftieBiker
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Re: Using the Leaf for power in a Blackout: MY "Leaf to Home

Fri Dec 06, 2013 4:33 pm

I was thinking that for those of us who want a location-specific setup, it might make sense to use a separate, larger deep-cycle battery as a buffer. It would be connected to the car's battery, but would have more capacity and would handle the inverter load directly, with the Leaf keeping it charged. What do you folks think?
Scarlet Ember 2018 Leaf SL W/ Pro Pilot
2009 Vectrix VX-1 W/18 Leaf modules, & 3 EZIP E-bicycles.
BAFX OBDII Dongle
PLEASE don't PM me with Leaf questions. Just post in the topic that seems most appropriate.

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