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Hardwiring a Power Inverter - Detailed Example
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Hardwiring a Power Inverter - Detailed Example

Date Created: 04/22/2008
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I know this has been posted prior, this is simply the documentation of how I did this. Thanks especially to the forum:

In essence, I wanted to hardwire from the battery to a power inverter inside the cab of my Wrangler TJ (2003). This inverter was to be operated from a separate switch on the center console, and the inverter powering a standard outlet mounted in the lower center console. Below is the basic wiring diagram:


1) Mount the inline fuse near the battery in the engine compartment

2) Run 6ga wire from battery, through inline fuse, across back of engine compartment to opposite site. Electrical tape, wrap with conduit and wire tie to secure

3) Drill hole through EXISTING rubber grommet through firewall, and run wire into the cab

4) Remove cover below the steering column, mount inverter with wire ties, wire negative to inverter

5) Remove center dash cover, remove heat/cool and accessory subsections, mount switch in place of cigarette lighter. Run positive to switch, then second positive back to inverter

6) Remove lower center forward console, cut and mount outlet, run power cord from inverter to outlet

Items required / where purchased / cost:

- 20 ft 6ga wire : Home Depot $40

- 10 ft plastic conduit cover : Advance Auto Parts $3

- Electrical tape : Advance Auto Parts $1

- QPower ANL Type Fuse holder : Local Car Stereo shop $25

- 80amp ANL Type fuse : Ebay $2.50

- 1 pack wire ties : Advance Auto Parts $1.50

- Vector 750W Power Inverter (soft start / auto restart / low power shut off) : Ebay $70

- Conduct Tite 300AMP battery isolator switch : Advance Auto Parts $7

- Standard 3 prong dual outlet : Home Depot $1.50

- Shallow outlet box : Home Depot $1

- Outdoor grade outlet cover : Home Depot $4

- 8ft 3 Prong Power cord : Home Depot $9

Total cost / time: $163.50 / 13 hours

Some lessons learned:

- 6ga wire may be overkill, but will easily handle a 80amp load over 10ft. Be aware, because of thickness it is hard to cut / bend, so plan Ďrunsí wisely

- Picture shows 200amp fuse, this was for testing only. Replaced with 80amp fuse to ensure any overload blows at the fuse, not at the battery

- 750W inverter is large enough to handle most applications, and about the biggest I could cram under the steering column. Also had the built in features mentioned above that I wanted.

- Given the switch is direct wired from the battery, it too must handle a 80amp load. Given switches >50amp are hard to find, this is the next largest I could find.

- Depending on how you mount the inverter, you could do away with the switch and simply use the on/off switch on the inverter. I simply wanted to have an easily accessible way to turn the inverter on and off without digging under the dash to find it.

- Outlet is not a GFCI, this was a conscious choice. Given relative protected area of mounting I didnít feel it necessary.

- Location of outlet mount is only location in center console I could find with the space for a shallow box outlet. Even checked rear portion of the console but no such luck.


Well worth it, so nice to be able to simply plug in laptop / cell phone / small appliances and use them inside the cab with a flip of the switch!


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