Truckers, Select the Best Power Inverter for You
October 15, 2018
Truck drivers that are on the road for days, weeks or months at a time will find having access to portable power keeps them charged, connected and entertained. Whether its powering a TV, DVD player or iPad to keep them entertained, charging their laptop or phone that keeps them connected to family or having a mini-fridge to keep food and beverages cold or cooking appliances to make a warm meal, most drivers choose to have a power inverter to sustain their lifestyle while on the road.
Selecting a power inverter that best suits your needs comes down to what you plan on powering while on the road and how many watts of power you will be using at the same time. All appliances and AC operated items will be labeled or marked with how many watts or amps they will use. Typically, laptop computers, gaming consoles and TV’s will be between 100-300 Watts and appliances, such as refrigerators, have a 500-startup load with about a 50-60 watt running load, while microwaves and coffee pots will be in the 1000-watt range. In general, double the wattage of your highest rated appliance and that will provide a good indication of what size inverter you will need to purchase. For example, if a microwave requires 1000 Watts of power you would need a 2000-Watt inverter to power it. Most drivers do select a 3000-Watt inverter to power more appliances at once.
Some inverters, including many in the PowerDrive® product line, will also have multiple charging ports for cell phones, GPS units or dash cams as well as a convenient mobile App, featuring Bluetooth® technology, which allows you to remotely connect to your inverter to monitor and customize the performance.
For sensitive electronics like tablets, gaming systems, LCD TV’s, oxygen concentrators and devices with variable speed motors you will want to consider a pure sine wave inverter. A pure sine wave inverter provides a better-quality output for these types of devices and simulates an electrical grid that you would find at home. Meaning that it will be clean continuous power - no lines in your TV or humming in your sound system.
The larger inverters that provide more power will also require that they are connected to your truck’s battery. If you do not plan on powering high wattage items and will just need a source to provide AC power to an appliance or charging of smaller electronics there are several choices that will plug directly into your 12 Volt outlet.
With some careful consideration you will be able to power the conveniences of home on the road. Make sure once you select the inverter that is right for you that you have it properly installed. If you make the decision to install it on your own, please make sure to follow the instructions in the owner’s manual and make sure that the inverter is properly grounded.