Page 1 of 9 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 85
  1. #1
    Platinum
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    38,110
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Inverters Made in the DR

    First of all, thanks to AZB/Aftab for his sage advice in another thread about inverters made in the DR. He was spot on.

    Inverters are as much of life in the DR as a car is. You simply cannot exist in any modern fashion without one.

    There has been much discussion on brands of inverters and whether the imports are superior to the ones made in the DR. The discussion is certainly important because the imports-Trace being the #1 brand-are significantly more expensive than the Dominican brands.

    And since we've been having ongoing problems with the 1.5kw already in our house, I did my homework and wanted to offer some insight into what I have learned from engineers, what I have found about the Dominican brands and some insight into our recent purchase.

    1.5kw isn't diddly if you want continuous power to most appliances in your abode. We want to run everything but the bedroom a/c, the water pump and the water heater. We have considerable computer and tech equipment but no plasma TV's or heart/brain monitors. A quick calculation showed that a 2.4kw would suffice; but because the price differential between a 2.4 and 3.6 was very minor, a few hunders pesos, we opted for the larger. We chose a 3.6kw with 24 volt input (called a 3624 in the inverter world, a 2.4 with 12 volt input is a 2412, etc.)

    5 years ago there may have been a need for a pure sine wave inverter on sensitive electrical equipment. But not so much any more. Laptops already have an ac/dc adapter and modern power supplies with most (not all) modern appliances (including TV's and audio equipment) don't really rerquire it-nice, but not necessary. A check with two electrical engineer friends, both geeks, one a trusted Dominican family member, led me to refining our requirements to a good modified sine wave unit. One reason is that the pure sine wave units can be three times the price of a mod. sine wave unit. Anecdotally, the Dominican engineer, an experienced tech supervisor at Codetel in the DSL division, said he hasn't seen damage to equipment because of a bad inverter in several years and that there is more danger in the surges from the sudden power-on than from inverters. Makes sense.

    So I went researching, looking for the best quality and function at the most reasonable cost.

    I found that one company makes MOST of the circuit boards in both Trace as well as several Dominican brands of inverters. The circuit board is the heart of an inverter, period. With that info, we eliminated Trace based on the significantly higher cost. Don't get me wrong, no doubt they make a quality, top-shelf unit. But we wanted to find comparable quality at much better prices. So we went researching Dominican inverters.

    And this is where things got interesting.

    As AZB pointed out, all Dominican inverters are NOT created equally. I give you a perfect example, our old 1.5kw unit:

    Our electrician, an actual pro who knows his stuff, says it's very typical. It's a mishmash of cobbled together components and hand-made bad circuit boards with solder joints from hell. These are cheapcheapcheap...and are in many Dominican homes. I suspect these are the type that will fry sensitive electronics. I can tell you the quality of power coming from that unit was just aweful.

    There are many local inverter companies who offer different private labeled Dominican made inverters and some who sell Chinese imports. But we chose to investigate manufacturers who sell them directly. The rationale was knowledge of the units and direct parts and service support especially under the warranty period.

    One brand we heard mentioned often was ProTrace made by Inverluz in Moca. I posted a promotional video about them in another thread. When we called the factory the representatives were very helpful and ready with technical specifications. We found they produce two lines: ProTrace, still somewhat analog, and Wave, all digital. The price differential was about 35%.

    They have a store with a display in Santiago on Padre Las Casas between Bartolo Colon and Estrella Sadala, a couple of blocks from Sadala. The store is "MegaTone".

    Again, the store personell were very helpful, knowledgeable and were clearly proud of their product. They allowed me to take all the pictures I wanted.

    This is their circuit board, the heart of their system. The white box shows the controls, adapters and diagnostic lights you see on the outside of the unit:


    A display of some of their units:


    This is a see-through 36/24 unit to show the quality of construction:



    The 3624 unit no longer has the external voltage meter. The cost, with a 2 year full warranty, is $RD16,000 (which includes a $RD800 discount). We also purchased 4 220ah U.S. Batterys @ $RD3500 ea. with a 15 month full warranty/9 month prorated warranty. So the total cost of a quality inverter and batteries was $RD30,000. Not bad at all.

    I might add that Inverluz also makes pure sine wave inverters in their Wave line. The price for a 4024 is $RD53,000.

    We had the unit installed by our electrician here in Jarabacoa. He commented on the quality. Installation was a snap and the unit has worked perfectly. Good thing, because the power from Edenorte has just sucked recently.

    There are also other solid Dominican brands out there. Inverluz is just one.

    One more important note: an inverter can act as a surge suppresser and short curcuit preventer ONLY IF the house electrical system is grounded. Many if not most in the DR are NOT grounded. Ours wasn't. It is now. We ad it done with the inverter installation...at a total cost of $RD2000 including the 4' long 5/8" thick copper rod. Make sure your house is grounded!

    Again, thanks AZB. And special thanks to Waytogo and Chip. Team effort. Hope y'all found clearing up the mystery of Dominican inverters helpful.

  2. Likes willieg, caribeman liked this post
  3. #2
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    7,648
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Excellent information. This is the quality of thread that is most welcome. I have been waiting for you to post info on your recent purchase so I now can purchase a quality local system. Two questions, where did you purchase the copper grounding rod? And could you give us the contact info on your electrician. I have one but he is very expensive. Sounds like you purchased a great system for a great price.
    Last edited by waytogo; 10-10-2009 at 09:03 AM. Reason: typo

  4. #3
    Platinum
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    26,413
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Excellent post, so for just under $1000 US you got a good inverter, 4 batteries, and the electrical system grounded. When you consider the price and inconvience of replacing valuable electronic equipment, and the possibility of loosing valuable data it's money well spend. Thanks for the great information.

  5. #4
    Silver
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    2,761
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Truly insightful post!
    Also, a properly grounded home ,is the ticket to being now able to utilize surge protectors (often part of UPS systems) to their full potential... which could, over a short time period well pay for the inverter and installation in savings.

    ... J-D.

  6. #5
    Silver
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    2,761
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by cobraboy View Post
    ...
    So I went researching, looking for the best quality and function at the most reasonable cost.

    I found that one company makes MOST of the circuit boards in both Trace as well as several Dominican brands of inverters. The circuit board is the heart of an inverter, period. With that info, we eliminated Trace based on the significantly higher cost. ...
    I was amazed at the quality and layout of the PCB assembly of your ProTrace inverter shown on your picture.
    MegaTone rings a bell, as it is a Korean manufacturer who designs, prototypes, manufactures and distributes PCB assemblies for all sorts of applications all over the world (including Latin America and the US). They also make parts for inverters:

    www.megatonecorp.com

    This is in no way diminishing the efforts or our Mocanos assembling your inverter or their product's quality. Actually, it is a guarantee of quality and proven professional design, that even should the local builders ever fold, one would stand a chance to find a replacement control board.






    ... J-D.

  7. #6
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    18,112
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Grounding rods can be found in m ost major hardware stores: Deposito ferretero in POP, Ochoa, Bellon in Santiago etc etc They run around RD$1000-RD$1200....

    Get one!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    HB

  8. #7
    Gold
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    8,309
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Realizing appliances and electrical devices all consume varying amounts of energy, could you broadly outline what appliances/electrical devices you can/or do have connected to the inverter system you have purchased/installed.

    Thanks in advance for your reply.


    Respectfully,
    Playacaribe2

  9. #8
    Bronze
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Posts
    1,944
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    i'd love to see a followup post in 6 months.

  10. #9
    Platinum
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    38,110
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by playacaribe2 View Post
    Realizing appliances and electrical devices all consume varying amounts of energy, could you broadly outline what appliances/electrical devices you can/or do have connected to the inverter system you have purchased/installed.

    Thanks in advance for your reply.


    Respectfully,
    Playacaribe2
    20cf Fridge, a water cooler, some floor and ceiling fans (not on at the same time), a dozen or so lights off and on at different times, 3 computers/printers/modems/routers, 2 radios. Not a whole lot.

    If I had more power needs, I'd add a second system or a larger inverter.

  11. #10
    Platinum
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    11,777
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    I have dominican made inverters in my office and in my house for over 9 yrs. The office one broke a couple of times because of my abuse but the repair was less than 500 pesos (like 14 bucks). Big deal. The home version is a solid one, made by eddy in santo domingo. It worked like a charm all 9 yrs without faults. Only once it broke down when a lizzard sneaked inside and got zapped. This blew out my transister; again the repair cost was less than 500 pesos. Imagine if trace unit had burnt out? Oh god. I am afraid to think of the repair costs.
    AZB

Page 1 of 9 123 ... LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •