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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know there is a thread with similar topic but I wanted to learn more about the R4P Prime + 120V/1500W AC power outlet option.

I know for power outage emergencies you should just use a dedicated power generator but I wanted to explore the possibilities of using the Prime as plan B should the generator fail, etc.

So while I had the electrician install the Nema 14-50 outlet for the L2 charger I took advantage and had him install the a power inlet box just like this:

158348


So I wonder if it will work if I use this kind of adaptor just to power few lights and perhaps the main fridge.

Is that a crazy idea?
158349
 

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I don't think it's crazy, plenty of people in forums have talked about how they've used inverter's in their priuses to do the same thing. The only thing to be cautious and aware of is that when fridges start up their compressor, they take in more initial current (for a small fraction of a second only) than they're rated at. The older the fridge, the higher the starting current could be. It's possible for you to turn on the fridge (say 800W), then turn on a series of lights (600W worth), and get a runtime of current around say... 1400W and think everything is fine. But, when the compressor on the fridge cycles off, then back on again later, it could temporarily overload the 1500W limit on that cycle on, thus tripping the breaker in the vehicle. If that happens, you'll just have to turn off all/some of your lights to get your baseline load well under the 1500W limit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I don't think it's crazy, plenty of people in forums have talked about how they've used inverter's in their priuses to do the same thing. The only thing to be cautious and aware of is that when fridges start up their compressor, they take in more initial current (for a small fraction of a second only) than they're rated at. The older the fridge, the higher the starting current could be. It's possible for you to turn on the fridge (say 800W), then turn on a series of lights (600W worth), and get a runtime of current around say... 1400W and think everything is fine. But, when the compressor on the fridge cycles off, then back on again later, it could temporarily overload the 1500W limit on that cycle on, thus tripping the breaker in the vehicle. If that happens, you'll just have to turn off all/some of your lights to get your baseline load well under the 1500W limit.
Outstanding - Thank You!

I suppose Toyota thought about extra protection so I don't overload and damage the $40k+ generator :D
 

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Outstanding - Thank You!

I suppose Toyota thought about extra protection so I don't overload and damage the $40k+ generator :D
The only thing you ever could accidently break is the inverter component in the car itself if that makes you feel better. There's no concern of you damaging any drivetrain components of the car because the traction battery is designed to run in the 50-100kW range during acceleration. (so about 30-70x what the 1500W inverter would output). Here's some scant details from the supplier:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The only thing you ever could accidently break is the inverter component in the car itself if that makes you feel better. There's no concern of you damaging any drivetrain components of the car because the traction battery is designed to run in the 50-100kW range during acceleration. (so about 30-70x what the 1500W inverter would output). Here's some scant details from the supplier:
That's some awesome info -Thanks!

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Does anyone know if that's a true sine wave inverter, or just modified sine wave? (which really should be called modified square wave!)
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Also be aware of local wiring codes. You’ll want to be sure your car feeds only the house and not the grid. Don’t want to zap the lineman down the street when they’re fixing whatever caused the power outage : )
Good point.
The electrician installed a safety lock in the electrical panel to take care of the safety code :)
 

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So I wonder if it will work if I use this kind of adaptor just to power few lights and perhaps the main fridge.

Is that a crazy idea?
View attachment 158349
It should, but there is more than one way to wire a 3 pin plug to a 4 pin socket. The "normal" way seems to be to wire the hot blade on the 15 amp, 120v plug, to both of the hot poles of the 240 volt socket. This will give you 120 on all of your 1 pole breakers. None of your 220 stuff will work. No harm if you turn them on, they just won't work. (however, if you turn on some 220 stuff and forget, you can burn your house down when the power comes back on. Happened to someone in my town. There is a bit more to the story of course.)
 
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The trick with doing this is load shedding and explicitly knowing each item you want to power's start up load if applicable.

Anything with a motor will have a start up load that is drastically higher than its running load. The good news is that today, some refrigerators, and small window air conditioners have variable speed compressor motors that start up gradually, eliminating surging start ups. Usually these types of appliances are Energy Star rated.

I suggest getting a Kill a Watt meter to know exactly how much current a device draws.

A few cavoites, don't run the car in a garage when using it for electrical power. Remember, using a small generator (the car) during a long term power outage is not to make life as normal, it is to only run the bare essentials. Turn off all breakers and then only turn on what you need. Cycle power items (Load shedding). Only use the coffee maker, when the coffee is done, unplug, run the refrigerator for a few hours, unplug, use the microwave provided its under 1500 watts, when done, unplug....


Use LED lights as they only use 10 or 20 watts.

Forget about using the water heater, central A/C, most electric heaters, well pumps, anything that requires 240 volts.

I will use my hybrids as a plan B with a 1KW pure sine wave inverter. I have a Yamaha inverter generator.

I use appropriate gauged extension cords instead of connecting to a load center. This reduces the chance over overload.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The trick with doing this is load shedding and explicitly knowing each item you want to power's start up load if applicable.

Anything with a motor will have a start up load that is drastically higher than its running load. The good news is that today, some refrigerators, and small window air conditioners have variable speed compressor motors that start up gradually, eliminating surging start ups. Usually these types of appliances are Energy Star rated.

I suggest getting a Kill a Watt meter to know exactly how much current a device draws.

A few cavoites, don't run the car in a garage when using it for electrical power. Remember, using a small generator (the car) during a long term power outage is not to make life as normal, it is to only run the bare essentials. Turn off all breakers and then only turn on what you need. Cycle power items (Load shedding). Only use the coffee maker, when the coffee is done, unplug, run the refrigerator for a few hours, unplug, use the microwave provided its under 1500 watts, when done, unplug....


Use LED lights as they only use 10 or 20 watts.

Forget about using the water heater, central A/C, most electric heaters, well pumps, anything that requires 240 volts.

I will use my hybrids as a plan B with a 1KW pure sine wave inverter. I have a Yamaha inverter generator.

I use appropriate gauged extension cords instead of connecting to a load center. This reduces the chance over overload.
Awesome tips!
 

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[IMG alt="SoNic67"]https://www.rav4world.com/d1/avatars/m/460/460793.jpg?1585745932[/IMG]
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#13 3 h ago
Variman said:
Turn off all breakers and then only turn on what you need.
This should be mandatory applied to the

This should be mandatory applied to the main circuit breaker. You don't want to back-feed power into a "dark" grid, if anything for utility workers' safety reasons.
I think he means turn off all the breakers as a means of load control. The OP said the electrician installed an interlock. However, I agree, back feeding the mains is very dangerous. Being "careful" is not enough, you have to have an interlock. I have enough electrical experience that I "know" how to backfeed a panel safely, but for that same reason, I'd never do it. It's way to easy to forget. And if you think you are smart enough to do this, keep in mind that when you screw up, and backfeed your pole transformer, it's going to put ~10,000 volts on the street line.
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I agree. My electrician was top notch and walked me through the whole process and advising to start one breaker at the time starting by the heavy load ones first and to keep all the 220v ones off at all time.
At the same time he left a sticker with all the steps on the electrical panel cover.
 

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I agree. My electrician was top notch and walked me through the whole process and advising to start one breaker at the time starting by the heavy load ones first and to keep all the 220v ones off at all time.
At the same time he left a sticker with all the steps on the electrical panel cover.



Volt and Bolt EV Inverter Kits Availability Coming to an End...


You may be surprised by how limited the 1500W provided by the DC/AC inverter in your Prime is. When I lost power for several days about a month ago due to a windstorm, the above 2500W inverter being fed by a Gen1 Volt was barely enough to power a couple TVs, keep the internet going and running a single fridge. Made the mistake of trying to plug in a space heater and it immediately tripped the OL protection on the inverter. Won't make that mistake again. Having 1500W avail on-the-fly will be nice but you can forget about powering everything in the house.
 

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Volt and Bolt EV Inverter Kits Availability Coming to an End...


You may be surprised by how limited the 1500W provided by the DC/AC inverter in your Prime is. When I lost power for several days about a month ago due to a windstorm, the above 2500W inverter being fed by a Gen1 Volt was barely enough to power a couple TVs, keep the internet going and running a single fridge. Made the mistake of trying to plug in a space heater and it immediately tripped the OL protection on the inverter. Won't make that mistake again. Having 1500W avail on-the-fly will be nice but you can forget about powering everything in the house.
Anything that heats/cools objects is going to use a lot of power, period. TV's can use a moderate amount, depending on how old/energy efficient they are (my old 65" plasma that I still use runs at 250 watts). My router takes only 20 watts. My personal gaming-build PC uses 200-350, laptop capped at 60W.

Use the following guide as a starting reference point to decide what to investigate:

Then take a look at the stickers/labels on your devices, if they don't have wattage listed, take the voltage (usually 120) and multiply by the max current rating. Devices like a fridge might have a high wattage requirement (mine for example says peak is 1100 watts), but that's if the ice maker, defroster, and compressor were all running at the same time (which rarely happens), because typically I only see my home usage up by 200 watts when my fridge compressor is on.

Note: I love having an electric meter readout for my house right in my kitchen. It's helped teach/train me on what appliances use how much electricity. (kind of like how a MPG meter on your car dash helps you keep your MPG up) Sure helps keeps the utility bills low throughout the year!
 

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Lots of variables determine if power generation will be successful or not. The quality of the inverter, the surge capacity of the inverter, the wire size and length of the power load runs. The type of load, including the type of motor, variable speed or not. Not saying that 1500 watts is a lot of power but with the proper equipment & testing, one can do alot with today's LED lighting, variable speed compressors, LCD monitors, and hi capacity rechargeable batteries. Load shedding, testing, knowledge are the key.

Producing heat is still an issue when it comes to small power generation. The only thing that may work is an electric blanket.

Some form of portable gas heater is more efficient. I cant help with advice as I live in FL.

A 5000 btu window air conditioner with a variable speed compressor will draw under 500 watts running, under 1KW surge. The key is to cool off one room, not the whole house.


Volt and Bolt EV Inverter Kits Availability Coming to an End...


You may be surprised by how limited the 1500W provided by the DC/AC inverter in your Prime is. When I lost power for several days about a month ago due to a windstorm, the above 2500W inverter being fed by a Gen1 Volt was barely enough to power a couple TVs, keep the internet going and running a single fridge. Made the mistake of trying to plug in a space heater and it immediately tripped the OL protection on the inverter. Won't make that mistake again. Having 1500W avail on-the-fly will be nice but you can forget about powering everything in the house.
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One thing you want to confirm is the type of neutral your generator has. My understanding is that if you have a floating neutral and connect via your Nema 14-50 outlet, you will be fine as the homes neutral will be used and it will bond to the generator via the neutral blade on the extension cord. If your generator has a bonded neutral design and you ground the frame of the generator, you would have two sources of ground and have a shock hazard when you connect to the Nema 14-50 outlet. The bottom line is that you want to confirm which type of grounding scheme your generator has, if you should bond the frame of your generator or not.

Again, for small generators, properly sized extension cords do away with potential ground loops and interlocks switches that do not block neutral from back feeding to the utility grid's transformer. I get the simplicity of connecting one short cord to a home electrical system but this introduces new risks.

Differences Between Bonded and Floating Neutral Generators


I know there is a thread with similar topic but I wanted to learn more about the R4P Prime + 120V/1500W AC power outlet option.

I know for power outage emergencies you should just use a dedicated power generator but I wanted to explore the possibilities of using the Prime as plan B should the generator fail, etc.

So while I had the electrician install the Nema 14-50 outlet for the L2 charger I took advantage and had him install the a power inlet box just like this:

View attachment 158348

So I wonder if it will work if I use this kind of adaptor just to power few lights and perhaps the main fridge.

Is that a crazy idea?
View attachment 158349
 

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Those looking for a DIY solution, as I was quoted $1000-$1300 to install a panel transfer switch, Theres this.


You'll have to manually move things over, but better than cracking the door open, etc.

Did anyone confirm if you can get power from the car charge plug like it was shown in the Japanese Rav4 Prime Video?
 
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