Beginner's Guide to Power Inverters

Beginner's Guide to Power Inverters

All About Power Inverters & DC to AC Solar Inverter Products & Power Inverters 12v to 240v for Battery Systems. Learn about Power Inverters for Camping & Off Grid Solar Power. 

Our range of 12V Invertres and Pure Sinewave Inverter chargers feature some of the best in class brands and our range of 12V to 240V Inverters and Inverter Chargers offer outstanding value for money thanks to their superior build quality and large range of features and extras.12 volt power inverters are a crucial part of any solar system, especially when access to the power grid is limited. By converting 12 volt DC power to 240 volt AC power, inverters can run most 240 volt electronic appliances without a power source and save you having to buy expensive 12 volt appliances when camping or caravanning. The two main technologies are the Pure Sine Wave, which is the best power inverter for use with laptops and the cheaper Modified Sine Wave inverter, which runs basic electronics.

Modified Sine Wave Inverter

Modified Sine Wave inverters sell for around a third of the price of their Pure Sine Wave counterparts and can run basic camping devices such as fans and 240 volt lights. Due to their square-shaped output wave however, they are unsuitable for running equipment such as phones, microwaves or televisions.

Pure Sine Wave Inverter

Pure Sine Wave inverters are the best power inverter for laptops and other sensitive 240 volt devices. In fact, the output wave form of a Pure Sine Wave inverter can be better than the electricity that comes out of your wall sockets at home! While they may be slightly more expensive than Modified Sine Wave technology, investing in a Pure Sine Wave inverter gives you the ease of being able to run a range of appliances when away from mains power.

Choosing the Best Power Inverter for Camping

Before buying an inverter, it’s important to know what size appliances you’ll be running off it. Inverters come in a range of sizes from 150 watts through to 6000 watts and yours should be roughly double the size of the draw you’ll be placing on it. This allows the inverter to work within its capacity and lowers the chance of blowing fuses in the event of a power surge.

Inverters have two ratings: a continuous and a peak rating. The continuous rating denotes what draw can be placed on the inverter for a long period of time while the peak rating is the maximum load an inverter can handle for a short period of time. The peak rating is usually around double the continuous rating and allows appliances that require an initial burst of energy, such as fridges to start up before settling into their continuous rating.

Using Batteries with your Power Inverter

As well as using the right appliances with your inverter, you also need to make sure that your battery is the correct size. Different batteries have different maximum draw currents that they can sustain without damaging the battery. For AGM batteries, the maximum current draw is 30% of their total capacity, while gel batteries use 25% and for wet or flooded cell batteries, it’s 10%.

It’s also worth remembering that inverters draw from batteries if they are left turned on, even if there is no appliance plugged in, which can leave you with a flat battery. You can find out what this draw will be by checking the specifications of your inverter.

Want to know more about Inverters - Read our Beginners Guide to Power Inverters

April 28, 2014 | By Aussie Batteries | Comments

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