I have a Cal 28' 1966 "The Pelican" sailboat moored in Seattle WA. I have been a live aboard for around a year now. (cheap rent) in Seattle anyways lol
I'm not a engine head at all, and not great with electric, computers are my specialized field so bare with me on the explanation please. I'll do my best
OK here goes:
I have been running a SPT Refrigerator on the Dock whilst being powered by the on shore power.
I am using the boat more frequently this year, so I went out and purchased a 1000W (2500W peak) Inverter so my fridge can be used out on the water.
Whilst i'm plugged into the shore power, if I connect the fridge to my inverter and power it on, it starts no problems at all...
If i'm not connected to shore power and engine is running, when I plug in the inverter, the inverter beeps tell tell me (low volts) and will not power the fridge...
So I checked my on-board Volt meter, and when i'm connected to shore power it reads at around 13.6 (analogue sorry) volts.
When i'm not connected to shore power and just running on engine at around 1000 rpm my volt meter is showing around 12 volts...
When I spoke to the inverter manufacturer tech, he said that the inverter needed max volts to start heavy things like the fridge, and the beep was a low volt warning, and thats why it was not starting...
A little about my setup:
I have a 12 volt starter battery, and 2 6volt deep cycle golf cart battery's in serial for the house batteries, on a 1, 2, 1+2, off switch. And then I have a Dual battery charger pro from guest to charge those batteries from shore power.
And my engine alternator to charge whilst running...
OK so my questions and queries:
How to I get my volts up when only running the engine so my inverter will power my fridge?
I've read about people having lots of batteries and such, if this needed?
Is my alternator working properly? How can I check?
I heard about people having different size alternators, How can I check what size mine is?
How much give should be in the Alternators belt?, mine seems tight but can push it in a little bit... I heard about these:
Indigo Electronics Atomic 4 Belt Tensioning Device
Maybe I could use one to tighten mine, but it looks like my Alternator is on upside down or something lol, sorry i'm know absolutely nothing about engines...
Anyways, that should do for now, Any Input and suggestions would be great, and thank you for any help or info provided. If you need more info just ask.