As we have described in previous posts, we have televisions, air conditioners, and many other devices that feed on electricity. Where does the electricity come from, you ask?
Like so many other things on Sea Gem, we have options. Three options.
First, we can plug our boat into the regular power grid (the same one your house is wired into) using an extremely thick extension cord:
When plugged in, we can pull up to 50 amps (AC), which is more than enough to run every single item in our boat at the same time (stove, oven, air conditioners, etc.). This is called "shore power."
Of course, we are not always at the dock. When we are out at sea or otherwise not using shore power (for example, if the power is out), we can run off our batteries. We have enough battery power to last a couple days. We have two inverters that convert the battery power (which is DC) to AC power, which can run all of our AC devices (televisions, for example). We can also charge our batteries when running our engines, and we also have six solar panels that help keep the batteries charged. The only downside to the batteries is that they are not powerful enough to run either the air conditioner or the stovetop.
Our third option allows us to power whatever we want when we are away from the dock: an 8000 Watt diesel generator.
The generator puts out plenty of AC power that is sufficient to run the air conditioner and the stovetop as well as top off the batteries. It runs on fuel, of course, so we can't run it forever, but it only burns about half a gallon an hour or less, so we can run it for as long as necessary for the most part.
To switch between these three methods of electricity, we have a switch on our electrical panel that couldn't be easier to use. It has four settings: shore, inverter, generator, and off:
Pretty simple, right?