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2019 136 low roof
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209 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am want to mount an inverter under the driver's seat and I'm looking for suggestions, solutions, and ideas. It's a small unit, 500 w, roughly 10 x 6 x 4 inches. Someone here must have done something similar. How to attach it, how to ground it, etc. Opinions, ideas, criticisms please. Thanks! .............and, are those small diameter rods that go laterally across the area removable?
 

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‘20 159 HT window van NH Seacoast
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I think the rods can be cut out (at least I did on my passenger seat).
Lots of people put everything under the sun under their seats from heaters to inverters. Personally (and this is only my personal belief) things that might ever need service don’t belong under a seat.
 
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Van #2 2021 EXT
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I think the rods can be cut out (at least I did on my passenger seat).
Lots of people put everything under the sun under their seats from heaters to inverters. Personally (and this is only my personal belief) things that might ever need service don’t belong under a seat.
I agree with KOV on the serviceability of equipment under a seat & the difficulty of the install, But;

If you can swing it & your intent is to power the inverter from the engine alternator it is a great location for short 12v runs. The battery ground is right there & so is the starter battery positive.

Your van might already have a red upfitter cable that runs under the drivers seat, then the passengers seat, then into the B pillar beside the passenger. It would be on the aft 70amp fuse on top of the started battery;

Motor vehicle Black Toy Bumper Automotive design


Yellow should be “Upfitters” wire to B Pillar

Blue is battery ground - chassis ground very near where the arrow is.

Other than the battery floor access, the other floor access hatch is for the fuel tank (between the seats).
 

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2019 136 low roof
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Lots of people put everything under the sun under their seats from heaters to inverters. Personally (and this is only my personal belief) things that might ever need service don’t belong under a seat.
Thanks...I thought of that, but the inverter is small and should be very serviceable when the seat is slid forward if mounted toward the rear. It also seems like a very easy route to the battery for cables from that location.
 

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IIRC, the bases on my factory swivels are attached to the van by two (2!) bolts on two legs. Pull those and the whole thing can be moved enough to work under. I mounted a trickle charger for the starter battery under mine. The starter battery's chassis ground is super close.
 

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2019 136 low roof
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209 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Our Xantrex Prowatt 2000 is under the driver seat. No cutting necessary. MrNomer mounted it on a piece of ply, which he then attached with U-bolts to the rear cross-member of the seat. It faces rear.
Good idea! I hadn't thought of using U bolts. I have some 1/4 inch alum. plate lying around...I could mount it with U bolts, drill & tap for the inverter mount and use it as a ground as well. Thanks!
 

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2019 136 low roof
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I’m pretty convinced that upfitter wire is there so a Tradesperson could install a small inverter to charge up battery tools or maybe power a skillsaw, etc.
I have the upfitter package... that 70A should keep the inverter well fed (50A input). Where would you suggest tapping into it?
 

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2019 136 low roof
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I agree with KOV on the serviceability of equipment under a seat & the difficulty of the install, But;

If you can swing it & your intent is to power the inverter from the engine alternator it is a great location for short 12v runs. The battery ground is right there & so is the starter battery positive.

Your van might already have a red upfitter cable that runs under the drivers seat, then the passengers seat, then into the B pillar beside the passenger. It would be on the aft 70amp fuse on top of the started battery;

View attachment 81733

Yellow should be “Upfitters” wire to B Pillar

Blue is battery ground - chassis ground very near where the arrow is.

Other than the battery floor access, the other floor access hatch is for the fuel tank (between the seats).
Thanks...this is very helpful.
 

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'16 2500 159 HT Granite Window - OH(io)
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One of the first things that I did to my van.
Cut slots in the plywood to fit the rails, and secured with some metal straps and screws.
The inverter bolts to the plywood also.
Gas Bumper Trunk Automotive exterior Electrical wiring
 

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I’m pretty convinced that upfitter wire is there so a Tradesperson could install a small inverter to charge up battery tools or maybe power a skillsaw, etc.
When we were shopping for used PMs, I came across one that had an electric/hydraulic lift wired into that pillar. That was before I knew about the upfitter gear in there, but I'm sure they tapped the 70A power there.

It's very useful really. I have a plan to expand the B pillar into a load center with relays and fuses, all fed from the 70A plug. I found and purchased the "PM correct" MTA fuse/relay base to start the project.
Product Circuit component Input device Font Engineering
 

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Take a look at how some of the wiring was done on these inverters shown that are under seat mounted - in general it is fairly well protected from things touching or falling on it.

This will potentially be one of the highest amperage 12 volt parts of the van interior. Be certain that things can fall / spill / be kicked with shoes and bare feet and not cause issues.
 

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Van #2 2021 EXT
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I have the upfitter package... that 70A should keep the inverter well fed (50A input). Where would you suggest tapping into it?
That red upfitter wire goes out of the battery box & does a 180 degree turn & head towards the passenger seat. It is in a plastic tray under the floor mat.

I would keep your inverted as close as practice to the starter battery for short 12v cable runs. But like KOV & @HarryN I would be cautious about putting an inverter under a seat,

I have some photos on my old build thread I will look and post here for you.

Edit;

here ya go (post #74);



Gesture Automotive lighting Automotive design Font Audio equipment


Later on in my thread is this photo;

Hood Automotive lighting Automotive tire Trunk Gadget

I pulled the smaller red upfitter wire of the 70amp fuse and abandoned it behind the drivers step up well. You can see that upfitter wire heading towards the passenger seat, then onto the B Pillar just behind the passenger seat.

Hope that clears it up for you 👍
 
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