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Portable Power Station  


Richard Soto
New Member
Joined: 2 months ago
Posts: 1
Topic starter  

I recently purchased a 34' tug on the east coast and had it shipped to the PNW. It does not have an inverter and battery capacity is only 400 Ah. Yes, we could start up the generator to make coffee or toast my bagel but who wants to listen to a generator at 7am? So I was considering adding an inverter and extra battery capacity -- when I stumbled across a new product (to me) called a "portable power station", essentially a lithium battery in a box with built-in pure sine inverter, MPPT controller and handy AC/DC charging inputs and outputs. The unit I'm looking at (Bluetti AC200P) has 2000Wh (200Ah) capacity and a 2000W inverter that could easily power a refrigerator, coffee maker, small microwave, and charge laptops and mobile devices. (Btw, the quote from my boatyard to install a quality 2000W marine inverter, cables, switches, fuses, batteries, AC sub-panel, and of course, ABYC certified labor @ $110/hr, was just under $5K.) The Bluetti costs $1,700 (free shipping, no sales tax). My plan is to locate the unit inside the boat and run a 20 amp power cord to the shore power receptacle in the cockpit. The power station would then "back-feed" 15 amp power to the boat's AC circuits (after switching off HWH and battery charger). The lithium battery could get a boost when we run the generator to charge up the house bank or when visiting marinas. Solar is an option for fast charging. So what am I missing? This "portable power station" seems like a quick and easy solution for providing the occasional AC power we're missing when at anchor or away from the dock. Please comment yea or nay to this idea...Thanks! 

Ben Ellison
Member Admin
Joined: 3 years ago
Posts: 147

Richard, I'm confused. If your new boat has a generator that can power AC coffee maker and toaster, than it has an AC circuit system probably built to ABYC standards. Also, can't that 400 Ah battery bank be charged either by the generator or the engine alternator? So your existing batteries can make a fair bit of coffee and toast with just an inverter added to the system, and then you've expanded the existing system instead adding a new one that wasn't meant for this use in the first place. Also 2000 Wh at 12.5v equals 160 Ah.

I can see that the Bluetti or one of the many similar power cubes could be valuable for camping or something, but I don't picture it as sensible on a boat (or on a kitchen counter or the front seat of my car):