AC vs. DC Circuit Power Use?

Does anyone know the internal power usage of an AC200P when the: 1) AC circuit is on 2) DC circuit is on? I can run my ARB refrigerator either way but I’d like to use the least amount of power.

DC will consume less power. The ARB refrigerator manual should specify the Watts/Amp draw of the fridge in either mode.

That’s fine on the ARB side of things but may pale in comparison if the internal power consumption in the AC200P is significantly different between the AC and DC circuits.

You are not going to see a lot of difference since the DC regulated circuits are high power due to the 25 amp capacity. But…here is a long link in this forum that gives information on the no load power draws of the AC and DC circuits. AC200P High overhead usage drops by 10% overnight with nothing on - #2 by Scott-Benson

If you have a smaller Sogen, you will gain efficiency using that on the portable compressor fridge since the no load overhead will be less. Using the DC circuit would be the way to go on the smaller sogen. Bottom line is that the price for the high capacity inverter and DC output of the AC200 is higher no load standby power consumption.


Thanks Scott! That explains some of the issues I have been observing and I also see that I should be running my refrigerator on the DC circuit. That said, if the ac200p is left connected to the solar panels, even at night, the unit will be drawing power and the only way to turn the display panel off is to isolate the panels from ac200p. Now that I know the issue, I will simply disconnect the panels with the plug-in connectors that I am using. I’m going to start keeping a log book to get a better feel for the operation.

One other issue I noticed today was the panel readout said 22%. This was after I had the unit charging from my inefficiently placed panels (showing ~140W) for ~6 hours. The readout went from 20% initial to 22% at the end of that period. My first thought was that’s pretty weak even with my refrigerator plugged in. However, when I shut the unit down and turned it back on the reading changed to 97% Is this something that you have ever seen?

I’ve been using the unit for the first time this past weekend and I’m still adjusting my usage to the way it seems to want to operate. Thanks for your help. If I see some pattern I might want to run it by you for an opinion. Thanks!

Rick Molina

M 858-842-7682

I have not seen the % remaining on the battery jump around like that. Keep an eye on that.
The AC 200 will be drawing power if left on at any time. Panels connected does jot affect that except that you may be getting some power back. To fully turn the unit off, push the main power button for a full five seconds and make sure the screen goes off

I just received my AC200P with three SP120 panels ten days ago. Since then I’ve used and carefully monitored the system every day. I HAVE seen the “state of charge” (SOC) indicator jump around erratically. One time I shut the system down (everything off) for the night at 88%. The next morning I plugged in the solar and, as expected, the unit came on and showed 88%, again as expected. But then about 30 seconds later the display jumped to 100% for no apparent reason (the unit had been discharged to 88% the previous evening – it was not fully charged). When the display showed 100% (even though the battery was not fully charged) of course no input from the solar panels was accepted. Eventually, by drawing power from the AC outputs, the SOC figure came down and the solar input came back. But this was a disconcerting experience.

A day or two later a very similar thing happened. I had discharged the battery down to 60% on the display, and was charging it back up with the AC adapter. It went from 60% to 90% smoothly as expected. Then, while I was watching the display, it suddenly jumped from 90% to 100% in an instant, and this of course shut off input from the AC adapter. Again I drew power from the AC output, and eventually the unit began charging again.

I have been mystified by these experiences, and there may have been more such events that I didn’t observe. I can’t spend the whole day just watching the display!

Yesterday I tried cycling the battery by running it down to 0%, and then charging it back up to 100% using the AC adapter. This seemed to go smoothly, and I have not seen another bizarre jump in the display since then, but it’s just been one day and if it happened, I probably wouldn’t have seen it. Still, I’m hopeful that by cycling the battery fully I have re-set the SOC calibration and fixed the problem. But actually, I have no idea if that is the case.

If anyone has any insights or suggestions for this issue, they would be much appreciated.

I just found this site yesterday and I read a lot of posts. I am very happy that this site exists and very much appreciate the generosity and helpfulness of many of those who post here.

Maybe I should have started a new thread with this post? Maybe I’ll do that…