As much as you want to be away from the hustle and bustle of cities, it’s more pleasurable to enjoy the same amenities even when you’re away from shore power.
Using a generator may be impossible, so your next alternative is a power inverter. The best RV inverter converts DC power to AC power, so you can run your appliances like a TV, refrigerator, and microwave.
Using inverters is worth it because they’re safe. To ensure that you find a good model, here are some things to consider:
- Capacity: The most crucial factor to consider is the unit’s capacity. Make sure it’s more than enough to power all your electronic appliances and devices. The largest models offer 4000 watts of continuous power, while the portable units continuously produce 500-1000 watts.
- Protection: Safety is always vital for this type of device. To ensure that your fuses won’t explode or cause fire, look for protection against overload and other irregularities. Most inverters in this list have a thermo-controlled fan to reduce the heat and prevent frying the wires.
- Extra Features: It’s pretty convenient to have a remote controller because you can operate the unit even when at a distance. An LCD screen also offers another level of convenience when you want to know everything that’s going on in your unit.
Check out our buying guide below if you want to know more about RV inverters. We’ll also share some troubleshooting tips. But before we start, let’s review the top rated inverters available today.
Table of Contents
Top 7 RV Inverters Reviews
1. Krieger 4000 Watt 12V Power Inverter
This particular Krieger model is a modified sine wave inverter offering 4,000 watts of continuous power, enough to run plenty of my RV appliances. It’s a reliable power inverter because it can handle power surges as high as 8,000 watts.
This inverter generator unit is a good backup power supply because it offers a high power capacity with great safety. It has a cooling fan to dissipate heat, and it only comes on when needed.
My favorite feature is the LCD display because it shows me whenever the device senses an overload, high voltage, and low voltage; better yet, the inverter also protects against these faults.
The best part about this device is that it shuts down when it’s low voltage. This aspect gives me peace of mind that my appliances are well-protected. And with a 3-year warranty, I feel assured that this product will serve me for many years.
The construction of this RV power inverter is also well-thought-out. The two AC outlets allow for convenient electrical use at home, while the fuse kit is handy for protecting the wire. Using this model is also easy because it comes with a wired remote control to operate the device from a distance.
2. Ampeak Upgrade 2000W Power Inverter
This Ampeak model is another modified sine wave inverter that’s perfect for emergency backup power and road travel. It produces 2,000 watts of continuous DC to AC power and 4000 watts of surge power, enough for laptops, fans, and many other appliances.
What I like most about this 2000 watt RV inverter is its clear LCD screen that shows important information like input voltage and output voltage. I like that the screen displays the current battery level, so I would know when to charge it. More importantly, I found two 3.1A USB ports, perfect for quickly charging my small electrical devices.
I like the fact that there are two cooling fans to speed up the cooling process. The fans only turn on when the temperature rises and risks the device’s safety. It’s also worth noting that this unit has many safety features like overload and reverse polarity protection.
It is an excellent inverter for camper because it’s small enough to store in my trunk. With the included cables, it’s easy to connect the device to the battery. I’m pleased with the built-in fuse because it prevents the unit from exploding, plus the device comes with an 18-month hassle-free warranty.
3. POTEK 500W Power Inverter
POTEK is an excellent inverter for RV TV, laptops, and other small electronics with 500 watts of continuous power and 1000 watts of peak power. This 500-watt device is compact with notches to mount on my trailer, and it fits my tool bag easily.
My favorite feature is the cooling fan because it cools the device rapidly for about ten seconds. I believe that its loudness depends on the load. Fortunately, I only run a small load, so the fan’s noise is barely noticeable.
I know this thing won’t blow up because this modified sine wave power inverter comes with two 30 amp fuses. Potek also provides spare fuses in case the default ones stop functioning, saving me some money in the process. I also love the 2A USB port because it quickly charges my laptop and Bluetooth headphones.
Surprisingly, this portable power inverter comes with all the basic safety features, like short-circuit protection. It shuts down when the voltage goes higher or lower than the predetermined thresholds. I like this aspect because it protects my electronics. For its price, the inverter offers excellent value.
4. Maxpart 1000W Power Inverter
I was looking for a good inverter converter combo and I found this Maxpart. This 1000W RV inverter has a 12V cigarette lighter port for direct DC applications to charge my laptop and smartphone. Plus, the USB ports are 2.4A, so they can charge my modern devices quickly.
With a continuous supply of 1,000 watts, this model is a good inverter for van life because it covers most of my power needs. I can run my cooler, laptop, and TV without any issues.
I love the smart digital display of this unit as it shows its current status, whether the voltage is normal or going beyond the acceptable threshold. Fortunately, this device shuts itself down when detecting high or low input voltage power. I barely hear the fan when it runs, so that’s a big bonus.
This device is pretty easy to set up with the cord and alligator clips. It’s compact yet durable with its aluminum alloy casing. Like any typical modified sine wave inverters, this particular Maxpart model is cost-effective.
5. Energizer 4000 Watts Power Inverter
This Energizer heavy-duty inverter packs a lot of punch, continuously offering up to 4,000 watts of power output and handling 8,000 watts of surge capacity. I’ve been using it to run my large freezer with solar panels and batteries at no interruptions.
I’m confident that this device will last for many years because it’s well-protected from any electric irregularities like overvoltage and short circuits. I love the overload protection because I like to use my window aircon occasionally and don’t want to blow up the fuses. When it does overload, the device automatically shuts down for safety.
Overheating isn’t a problem because the device has a high-speed cooling fan. Thankfully, the built-in fan works quietly, so it’s not bothersome at all. I think the unit doesn’t get hot easily because the fan rarely gets activated.
The best part is that this unit is portable for travel despite being powerful. It also has a long two-year warranty to give me peace of mind. As for the LCD screen, it’s clear and pretty helpful for knowing the inverter’s condition at all times.
6. VOLTWORKS 2000W Power Inverter
This VOLTWORKS is a modified sine wave inverter that produces 2,000 watts of power repeatedly. It has a surge capacity of 4,000 watts, so it can handle high-load appliances, like my heater with tubes.
This 2000 watt 12V RV power inverter comes with a pretty cool remote control. I like the remote control panel because it shows the battery status. It runs with a 15-foot cable, so I can operate the device far from the unit conveniently.
I love the construction of this device. It comes in a blue casing that looks attractive and has a helpful LCD screen on top. Once I dropped it on the ground, but the inverter had no scratches because the aluminum alloy material feels strong. I also notice that the device works even better after the fan has rotated for a few minutes.
This is a good inverter charger for RV because I can power multiple devices using the two USB ports and three AC outlets at the same time. Thankfully, there’s a low voltage alarm to warn me in case the unit is having an overload, thermal, or short circuit problem. I feel safe using it, especially when it comes with an 18-month warranty.
7. Renogy 3000W Pure Sine Wave Inverter
I was looking for a pure sine wave inverter for RV like my old Xantrex, and I found this 3000 watt RV inverter from Renogy. This unit runs 3,000 watts of continuous power and 6,000 watts of surge capacity, enough to start my power tools without any problems.
What I like most is the way this inverter runs my microwaves quietly. I hear no audible sound from the fans when they turn on to dissipate the heat of the device. More importantly, I experienced no glitches while using my laptop, which is a benefit of using a pure sine wave model.
I love the fact that the wired remote controller comes with a long cable. I can operate the device as far as 19.8 feet away. Thanks to the LED indicators, it’s easy to tell whether the unit is operating or shutting down due to overheating.
It’s pretty safe to use this unit on the road. The unit powers off when it detects any irregularities, like overload, over-voltage, or short circuits. I have no worries about any defects because this product is covered with a one-year warranty.
What to Know Before Buying RV Inverter
If you want to run your AC appliances, then you’ll need inverters for travel trailers. Choosing a high-quality one is crucial because you have to ensure that it won’t blow up your fuse and endanger your RV. Before you go shopping, here are some important things to know about RV inverters.
The different types of RV inverters
There are three common types of inverters and each of them serves a different purpose.
- Square wave inverters: These inverters are perfect for running simple tools with universal motors. They’re the simplest type of inverters, but they may not be ideal for sensitive electronics like computers and LCD TVs.
- Modified sine wave inverters: A modified sine wave inverter is powerful enough to run many electronic appliances that aren’t vulnerable to power fluctuations. However, they may create some buzzing sound when operating fluorescent lights or plasma TVs, if not cause them to malfunction altogether.
- Pure sine wave inverters: These inverters supply power that is nearly the same as the mains supply. They’re the most efficient and effective, but also the most expensive.
Benefits and drawbacks of RV inverters
RV power inverters allow you to run your AC appliances without hooking up to shore power or a generator. The best power inverters even allow you to charge multiple devices while off-grid.
However, some inverters may interfere with radio frequencies and cause a buzzing sound. Some fans may spin so hard that they may create unnecessary noise.
What features to look for
To find the right inverter for your RV, look for the following features:
- Power rating: Expressed in watts, the power rating of the inverter tells how much electricity it can produce. If you only want to power your phone and computer, you can do well with a 1000-watt inverter. Look for a higher wattage rating if you own larger appliances like a refrigerator and microwave.
- For sizing accuracy, you can add the watts of all your appliances together, then compare the result to the inverter rating. It’s also wise to upsize a little in case you want to add more devices to the RV in the future.
- Protection systems: Most RV inverters feature multiple protection systems against electronic irregularities, such as low voltage, short circuits, and overloading.
The best power inverter even features an automatic shutdown or a low voltage alarm to protect the batteries. A thermal-controlled fan is also ideal to reduce the heat of the device.
- Extra Features: The RV inverters come with transfer switch to prevent backfeeding. Look for a remote control if you want to operate the unit from far away. The best RV power inverter also has an LCD screen to show the battery status and the unit’s condition.
Consider your battery
Generally, your inverter’s rating should be somewhat proportional to your battery’s amp-hours. A 4000W inverter should go with a 400Ah battery, for instance.
Another factor to think about is the type of battery. Given the same inverter model, lead-acid power banks will require more amp-hours to work well than lithium ones.
What Are Some Troubleshooting Tips for Inverters?
If you experience sudden power interruptions and excessive drains of your RV batteries, then your inverters for motorhomes probably have problems. Here are some troubleshooting tips you can try.
- Tighten the battery terminals because they might be dirty or in reversed position.
- Check the fuse. If it’s blown, replace it.
- You might have overloaded the inverter. Try to turn off a few devices and calculate how much power you are using.
- If you hear a beeping sound, reduce the load or check the battery status.
- Once you notice that your inverter is overheating, check the fan’s condition and the unit’s ventilation.
What Size Inverter Do I Need for My RV?
The first thing to do is to know how much power you’ll actually need to power your electrical appliances. Choose an inverter that can handle a power surge that’s larger than your appliances.
For example, you want to power an air fryer, modern fridge, and laptop. See their wattage ratings here.
|Running Watts||Additional Surge Watts|
|Air fryer||1,500 watts||0|
|Modern fridge||400 watts||600 watts|
|Total||1,950 watts||600 watts|
Add the total running watts and the additional surges, and we get:
1950 + 600 = 2,550
Add 20% of the total, and you’ll get the minimum size of the inverter.
0.2 * 2,550 = 510
2,550 + 510 = 3,060 watts
For this case, you’ll need at least a 3,100-watt inverter.
Is It Possible for an RV Inverter to Wear Out?
Yes, it’s possible because inverters have components that wear out rapidly. The capacitor is the main culprit of damage. It wears out due to electro-mechanical stress and high temperature.
Inverters also easily decline when you use them poorly. If the current or voltage goes above the acceptable thresholds, it takes a toll on the inverter. Ultrasonic vibrations also cause inverter failures.
How Many Batteries Do I Need to Run a 2000 Watt Inverter?
You’ll need about two 12-volt batteries in a series to power a 2,000-watt inverter.
The battery size depends on the required hours to run the battery and battery voltage.
Let’s say you want the inverter to run for one hour.
2,000 watts *1 = 2,000 watts
Divide the total watts by 12V:
2,000 watts/12V = 166.67 amp hours
For this application, you’ll need a 166.67 ah battery to run the inverter for an hour. If you want to maintain a 50% capacity, use a 333.33 ah 12V battery.
How Many Years Does an Inverter Last?
Inverters have an average life of 10-15 years. If you want a more durable inverter, try a micro or solar type, which can last about 25 years. The microinverter is, however, more expensive.
An RV inverter is truly essential for traveling as it turns DC to AC voltage to run appliances like a microwave and refrigerators. If I have to pick the best RV inverter, it would be the Krieger 4000-watt model because it offers all the basic features for safe usage. This unit also has a high power capacity to run multiple appliances at once.
Choosing the right RV inverter depends on many factors, including the device construction and power rating. Regardless of your choice, make sure it meets your power demands and fits your budget.
Okay, so I’m Philip Lopez. I join Riverside Trailer as an editor, where I will be doing research for both content and reviews. I contribute to studies aimed at understanding the most typical problems encountered by RVers on the road. I also keep up with the newest RVing gadget innovations so that I can promptly evaluate and recommend the best options.