best rv inverter

The 10 Best RV Power Inverters To Buy in 2022

Are you looking to buy an RV inverter but do not know where to start? You’re not alone. In fact, choosing the best RV inverter can be a daunting task, full of confusing specifications and false assumptions. But shopping for an inverter does not have to be that much complicated. With the proper guideline, you can pick up the best option for your trailer.

To make things easier, we’ve put together this guide so you can choose the best power inverter for RV. We’ll cover everything from how an RV inverter works and its types to the most important factors to consider when buying them. So whether you’re new to RVing or just looking for some guidance, read on for a comprehensive overview of the best RV inverters.

Best RV Inverters: Quick Recommendations

If you’re in a hurry, take a look at this quick list of our top picks for the best RV inverter chargers or continue scrolling to check on our full list with in-depth reviews.

NoBest RV InvertersPricesOur Ratings
1Krieger KR2000$$$*****
2Energizer ENK-2000$$*****
3Ampeak IVUFA2000$$****
4Giandel PS-4000QAR$$$****
5Giandel PS-1200JCR $$****
6Cantonape 2500W$$$***
7GoWISE PS1002$$*****
8Potek ‎PI2000W$$*****
9Xantrex ‎Freedom 458$$$$$*****
10Go Power GP-SW3000-12$$$$***

The Basics About RV Inverters

What Is an RV Inverter?

The whole idea of an RV inverter is simple. It converts direct current (DC) into alternating current (AC), and then supplies that power to the RV’s appliances, maintaining a specific voltage and frequency. An inverter helps with the seamless and compatible power supply to most electronics.

The 120V or alternating current (AC) and 12V or direct current (DC) are the two different power sources for a trailer’s electrical system. All appliances with two prongs that draw power from a regular wall socket use the 120V power. Some other devices, including the furnace and lights, use the 12V power.

The inverter converts a battery’s 12V DC into 120V AC so that you don’t need a separate power supply for running the bigger appliances that use alternating current. This power conversion from an inverter for motorhomes allows refrigerator, TV, microwave, and other AC-powered electronics to run when you are boondocking.

best rv inverter
An inverter converts DC to AC power. Photo: RVing Trends

How Does an RV Inverter Work?

As mentioned earlier, an inverter transforms the 12V DC from a battery into 120V AC to power up larger appliances. You will need an inverter if you want to camp off the grid but not without the electrical conveniences.

But how does an inverter do this power transformation? To understand that, you need to realize how DC and AC work.

DC power is steady and consistent, while AC power runs in cycles between +120V and -120V. The inverter breaks that steady current supply into plenty of loops in the AC power limit. It increases the electricity’s voltage and then modifies it to the intended cycle.

The best RV inverter models should have some bells and whistles than the standard units. It should have bypass circuitry to process electricity directly from shore power. If you have one such inverter, you can put the battery on standby mode and use the electrical power from an external source.

The best inverter for RV should work well with your battery pack without constricting its capacity. It has to handle all of your power needs on the road and when boondocking.

RV Inverter vs RV Converter: The Differences

Both RV inverters and converters do the same job – transforming voltage – but the transformation is the opposite of each other.

An RV converter, also known as an RV battery charger, converts AC power to DC power. It transforms the 120V AC electricity from a shore power source into 12V or 24V for a battery.

On the other hand, an inverter transforms DC power to AC power, converting battery power to 120V. You will need it to run the trailer’s AC devices from the RV battery unit, while a converter helps power up the battery pack from the shore power.

If you want the function of both devices in one unit, purchase an inverter charger. The Victron Energy model is one of the best RV inverter charger units. The 3000W compact unit works with most electrical devices and appliances.

RV ConverterRV Inverter
Converts AC power to DCConverts DC battery power to AC
Charges the 12V RV batteriesSupplies power to AC appliances
Best for campsites with hookup facilitiesBest for boondocking

Interestingly, for ease of convenience, a number of brands release hybrid models such as inverter charger combos. Needless to say, those who lack the patience to manage multiple accessories tend to grab the combos.

Benefits Of RV Power Inverters

  • Comfort: Able to convert DC into DC, RV inverters allow you to use your battery bank to power all sorts of appliances in times of need. Therefore, by adding the best power inverter for RV to your vehicle, you could enjoy your indoor experience in relative comfort. 
  • Freedom: Generally speaking, you may make use of shore power to run AC appliances inside your RV. Still, to take advantage of shore power, you have to plan your travel around RV parks, campgrounds and so on. Don’t want to restrict yourself to a few locations just to maintain access to shore power? In that case, you should get a hold of an inverter for RV then use battery power to run appliances.  
  • Efficiency: If you intend to set up a solar system on your RV to be self-sufficient in the outdoors, you won’t regret getting an inverter. The power that solar systems generate is DC so it’s able to recharge batteries but cannot run appliances. By pairing your RV solar panels with an inverter, you could get the most out of solar energy. 

Types Of RV Inverters

When choosing the best RV inverter, you need to determine which type will best suit your needs carefully. You can break down the inverters into three categories: pure sine wave, modified sine wave and square wave. 

Pure Sine Wave Inverter

A pure sine wave inverter supplies clean, efficient power compatible with almost all appliances. Pure sine wave inverters let devices perform to their full potential and keep them out of harm’s way. Moreover, thanks to high capacities, models of the type have an easy time running various appliances simultaneously. In fact, some devices and electronics, including the central heating system’s motor and microwave, won’t function without this inverter.

The only problem with this inverter is the steeping price but the long-term, and effective performance is worth that money.

The Krieger KR2000 will be the right choice if you are looking for the best 2000 watt pure sine wave inverter for RV. It offers adequate surge protection and ensures a continuous, clean power supply.

Choose the Go Power GP-SW3000-12 or GoWISE PS1002 as the other great options when it comes to finding the best pure sine wave inverters for RV. Both units offer excellent performance at a reasonable price.

Modified Sine Wave Inverter

A modified sine wave inverter also works with almost all RV devices and electronics, but its power supply is less efficient than a pure sine wave inverter. Especially, heavy appliances tend to consume more power from this inverter. That extra power consumption could be as high as 20% more than that device would have drawn from a pure sine wave inverter.

Because of the low efficient power supply, you can experience buzzing sound and reduced brightness from fluorescent light in the trailer. In fact, the inverter itself makes a humming sound during its operation.

Among modified sine wave inverter units available on the market, the Energizer ENK-2000 stands out from the rest to be the best overall modified sine wave inverter. This inverter is one of indispensable camping accessories, compatible for charging all of your electronic devices when camping.

Square Wave Power Inverter

Considering the age of their technology, it’s only natural that square wave inverters get overshadowed by pure sine wave and modified sine wave models. However, you could still come across models of the type as you search for the best RV inverter.

The low price of square wave inverters means they should match the shopping budget of typical RVing enthusiasts. It’s best to use square wave inverters for small appliances though since they have mediocre capacities. 

power inverter for campers
Photo: Go-Van

Pure Sine Wave Vs. Modified Sine Wave: The Differences

Unable to make up your mind between a pure sine wave inverter and a modified sine wave inverter? Then it’s strongly recommended that you take a look at the comparison down below.

  • Pure Sine Wave Inverter: In use, pure sine wave inverters could deliver power that is the same as the power from household outlets. Because of that, pure sine wave inverters would be able to power a wide range of AC appliances with relative ease. The high efficiency of the pure sine wave inverters permits you to save power in the long run too.
  • Modified Sine Wave Inverter: Compared to the power from household outlets, the power that modified sine wave inverters deliver is less “pure”. Thus, a couple of appliances may run into issues if you run them using modified sine wave inverters. Nowadays, it’s not uncommon for brands to sell vehicles with modified sine wave inverters and those inverters should be adequate in most of the cases. That being said, it’s wise to upgrade to a pure sine wave inverter at the earliest opportunity. 
Pure Sine Wave InverterModified  Sine Wave Inverter
Most efficientSlightly less efficient
Compatible with almost all appliancesCompatible with nearly all appliances
Allow appliances to function to their utmost capacitySome appliances consume about 20% more power
Can handle sensitive appliances and electronicsIt should be used in simple power systems
Runs quietlyMakes some extra noise
ExpensiveLess expensive

10 Best RV Inverters: In-depth Reviews

During the search for the best RV inverter, members of the RV community name all sorts of models that they believe to be second to none. Nonetheless, if you could use a couple of recommendations, you need to check out these models. 

1. Best Pure Sine Wave Inverter For RV: Krieger KR2000

Krieger 2000 Watt 12V Pure Sine Power Inverter
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Specifications And Features:

  • Voltage: 12V (input); 120V (output)
  • Capacity: 2,000W (continuous); 4,000W (peak)
  • LCD display 
  • USB ports 
  • All-around protection 

Why This Is The Best Pure Sine Wave Inverter:

Effective and efficient, the Krieger KR2000 is a solid model that never fails to please in the course of operation. Able to convert 12V DC into 120V AC, this inverter easily adapts to a wide range of vehicles including mine. In addition to that, with a continuous capacity of 2,000W and a peak capacity of 4,000W, it could power many of my appliances simultaneously. Because of that, in my eyes, this inverter is the best pure sine wave inverter for RVs available for purchase. 

Thanks to its low profile, the inverter made by Krieger allows RV owners to save space in the interior which is a big plus. With this RV inverter, I not only secure enough AC power to run appliances on my RV but also make the most of interior space. Since the installation of this inverter for travel trailers is a straightforward affair, I only need a bit of time and effort to set it up. Hence, it’s a good buy for RV owners who can’t spend all day readying an inverter for travel. 

For ease of convenience, KR2000 incorporates a LCD display that updates me about everything from wattage to voltage. The display would show warnings if the inverter runs into issues so I could take actions before components suffer damages as well. Interestingly, upon purchase, this RV inverter is accompanied by a remote control that I could wire to it. By taking advantage of the remote control, I don’t have to go all the way to the display of the inverter to see how it’s hanging.

About outputs, Krieger KR2000 packs two standard AC outlets that support the plugs of a lot of appliances. Aside from that, if I plan to hardwire this inverter to the appliances on my RV, the hardwire terminals come in handy. Also, with the USB ports, it allows me to recharge my electronics (phones, tablets, laptops, …) in times of need. As long as I have solid USB cables, the USB ports should restore the charge level of my electronics in no time.

To regulate temperature, Krieger designed its 2,000W inverter for RVs with a cooling fan that speeds up heat dissipation. The fan runs quietly so I never find it to be a source of frustration on the road.

Bench tested the unit before installing in my RV. Voltage and watts are reading correct and with the 3 foot cables it made the installation that much easier. Looking forward to many years usage with this product. We use the power inverter to power our 5 cubic foot freezer that we have in our 5th wheel. We utilize the closet space where the washer/dryer would normally go. This is where I ran the remote switch that enabled us to turn the unit off/on without going outside to the battery compartment.

Shared by L. Rice

Nice unit. I purchased to run my 5th trailer with. Hooked up easy. Operation is silent. The fact that it comes with a ANL fuse kit is out standing. That is needed on inverters. It’s installed at the 1.5 ft mark on the positive cable. inverters that do not come with the power wire and fuse will run you around $40 to $50 or more to add. I disconnected the power converter on my main panel that charges the battery and hooked it up to my shore power line. Works great. I have a built in vacuum, microwave, Kurig coffee maker, toaster all worked great. Tv picture was no difference then on shore power. Did not try the a/c as it was not warm enough for a real test. It should work as the inverter puts out 16amps constant and can peak to just over 30amp. My trailer is a 30amp power, and a/c has worked when plugged in at home on 15amp.

Shared by Diesel

Pros:

  • High endurance 
  • Installation is child’s play 
  • No-nonsense maintenance 

Cons:

  • RVers sometimes complain about getting used units 
  • Quality control could use some work 

2. Best Modified Sine Wave Inverter For RV: Energizer ENK-2000

Energizer 2000 Watts Power Inverter Modified Sine Wave Car Inverter
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Specifications And Features:

  • Voltage: 12V (input); 120V (output)
  • Capacity: 2,000W (continuous); 4,000W (peak)
  • Heavy-duty 
  • Battery cables included 
  • ETL-approved

Why This Is The Best Modified Sine Wave Inverter:

Engineered for those who need power on the go, Energizer ENK-2000 proves popular among RVers, novices as well as veterans. Owing to the heavy-duty construction, this travel trailer inverter is immune to not only physical impacts but outdoor elements. Furthermore, since it features comprehensive protection against threats ranging from high temperatures to under/overvoltages, this inverter is superior to classic models in terms of safety. Thus, you should consider adding it to your shortlist if you like to keep your appliances out of harm’s way. 

In use, ENK-2000 is capable of providing a capacity of 2,000W but in times of need, its capacity would get as high as 4,000W. In my opinion, the capacity of this inverter for RVs is adequate to kickstart standard appliances and keep them running. Besides that, with a combination of outlets and USB ports, it permits RVing enthusiasts to distribute AC power to whatever they want. Because of that, by putting this inverter on my RV, I could run appliances and recharge electronics at the same time. 

About installation, with its outstanding handling, the Energizer inverter is simple to set up in most of the cases. On arrival, it comes alongside battery cables so there is no need to spend money on hardware. Similar to its competitors on the market, this inverter contains a cooling fan that keeps temperature under control around the clock. While this inverter makes some noise as it fires up the fan, the noise level remains low. 

It’s worth pointing out that once the setup process concludes, Energizer ENK-2000 needs little care to stay in working order. That means I could spend more time enjoying myself and less time looking after the converter on the road. Assuming that I refrain from taking things to the extremes, this inverter should last for years to come. Therefore, for full-time RVers that have few chances to grab inverter replacements, it’s the best inverter for campers

As proof of confidence, Energizer willingly offers everyone that picks up its inverter a two-year warranty. If my ENK-2000 fails due to managing defects within the warranty period, I may claim a replacement free of charge. 

I installed this in my semi truck. It arrived in perfect condition, installed easy by following the simple instructions, and started right up with no problems. Having worked extensively with 12 volt systems in boats and RVs I knew to give it a good stress test so any problems would show up right away. I hooked up a heavy load and ran it for 30 minutes. The inverter heated up (as normal), the fan functioned to keep it from overheating, and the 120v electricity never faltered. Then I hooked up a moderate (1000w) load and ran it for several hours. No problems at all.

Shared by Wayne Seymour

Pros:

  • Long-lasting 
  • Intuitive setup process 
  • Economical 

Cons:

  • Reports of voltage drops appear on occasions 
  • Less than ideal customer service 

3. Best Portable RV Power Inverter: Ampeak IVUFA2000

Ampeak 2000W Inverter 12V to 110V Power Inverter Digital LCD Display
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Specifications And Features:

  • Voltage: 12V (input); 120V (output)
  • Capacity: 2,000W (continuous); 4,000W (peak)
  • Cooling fan  
  • Automatic shutdown
  • Three outlets and one USB ports

Why This Is The Portable Power Inverter:

So you need AC power to run a couple of appliances but don’t like the idea of securing your inverter to a spot? Then it’s strongly recommended that you take a look at Ampeak IVUFA2000 and see what it could do. Compact and lightweight, this RV inverter outperforms many other models when it comes to handling characteristics. Needless to say, when a need arises, I’m able to set up this inverter and put it away in a blink of an eye. 

At 2,000W, the continuous capacity of IVUFA2000 is unexceptional but remains appropriate for RV appliances. Additionally, packing a peak capacity of 4,000W, this inverter should have an easy time kickstarting appliances of variable types in the course of operation. Aside from that, I appreciate the inclusion of three outlets and one USB port for outputs. By taking advantage of this inverter, I have the option of powering all sorts of things from appliances to electronics.

If the connection to the battery bank is solid, the inverter from Ampeak would start converting power the moment people turn it on. To check up on the DC – AC, all I have to do is to glance at the built-in digital display. Since the brightness of the display let me make out readings in low-light conditions, I could keep an eye on the conversion of power 24/7. If you like to stay in control, this inverter is the best inverter charger for RV you can get. 

For safety, Ampeak IVUFA2000 possesses layers of protection that shield it from short-circuit, overheat, overload and so on. In the case that it runs into problems all of a sudden, it’s going to shut down on its own and emit alarms as warnings. That is why I don’t need to worry about this travel trailer inverter damaging itself and my appliances.  The maintenance is no-nonsense as well, thus, it only requires a bit of attention to stay in working order. 

Reaching the market at a reasonable price, IVUFA2000 is a good buy for budget-minded RVers. Ampeak backs its inverter with an eighteen-month warranty that brings peace of mind too.

I just wanted to say that this inverter is the real deal. For the following reasons:

* The product comes packaged in a sturdy box.
* You receive the positive and negative cables needed to get you started.
* The LCD screen is a great feature, because you can see real time what input/output the inverter is pushing.
* 3 ports to plug into power is awesome to get more devices connected.
* You can mount the inverter using screws into your vehicle.
* You can feel the quality to the touch and weight of the product.

I’m very happy with the inverter as it does a great job. Also I should state that the product came in on time as well. There’s nothing like receiving the product when you expect it.

Shared by TheMvegastyle

Pros:

  • Quiet 
  • Space-saving 
  • Excellent post-purchase support 

Cons:

  • Inconsistencies exist between units 
  • People notice wiring issues every now and then 

4. Best Heavy-Duty RV Power Inverter: Giandel PS-2200KSC

GIANDEL 2200W Pure Sine Wave Power Inverter
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Specifications And Features:

  • Voltage: 12V (input); 120V (output)
  • Capacity: 2,200W (continuous); 4,400W (peak)
  • Aluminum alloy housing
  • Remote control 
  • Isolated input and outputs 

Why This Is The Heavy-Duty Power Inverter:

Capable of maintaining DC – AC conversion in extreme conditions, the Giandel PS-2200KSC could minimize interruption to the power supply of appliances inside the RV interior. Integrating aluminum alloy housing, this inverter for RV is good at dealing with vibration by all accounts. Aside from that, with built-in protections, it’s immune to a wide range of issues: overload, overheat, over/under voltage, … Thus, this camper inverter is a must-have for those who care about comfort while exploring the outdoors like me.

Featuring a combination of four outlets and one USB port, PS-2200KSC permits the delivery of power to several locations at the same time. Noteworthily, since this inverter is a pure sine model, its power is in essence the same as that from household outlets. That is why it would have no trouble running sensitive appliances for extended periods of time. The high efficiency of this inverter results in a low percentage of power loss too and that helps a lot on the road. 

Like other modern inverters for travel trailers, the inverter from Giandel contains a LED display as well as some light indicators. By taking a look at the display and the light indicators, I could tell the status of this inverter with relative ease. I also like the accompanying remote control and cable that eliminate the hassle of going all the way to the inverter to inspect it. With the right tools, the setup of the inverter and the remote control lasts mere moments. 

In terms of noise, the cooling fan of the Giandel PS-2200KSC indeed makes some sounds every now and then as it dissipates heat. However, the noise level never gets to the point of annoying so I don’t deem this inverter to be a source of irritation. Unsurprisingly, in many articles that review RV inverters, this RV pure sine wave inverter comes up as the best RV inverter regarding quietness. Finally, the fan is a breeze to clean so maintenance is a piece of cake.

Though PS-2200KSC is not dirt-cheap by any stretch, it remains a match for the wallet of people that spend wisely. The longevity of this inverter should save a couple of bucks in the long run as well. 

I have tried 3 others models from other brands. None of the others would run my RV air conditioner which is 15k BTU. This inverter is amazing. It runs my AC, my fridge and my TV all at the SAME TIME. My limiting factor now is my batteries and charging system. I am beyond happy with my purchase.

Shared by Brandon

I use my Giandel 12 volt 2200/4400 Inverter in my RV for power when Trailer Park electric hook up is not available. I use 2 x 100 Amp solar panels to a high end deep cycle battery independant of my RV batteries. I hung the Giandel in my rear storage compartment and wired two plug in receptacles and the remote inside my RV. I love this product and the remote makes it so easy to power off after use. The Giandel Inverter is reliable and produces excellent continuous power. A great product.

Shared by Islander

Pros:

  • Resilient 
  • Customer service is responsive 
  • Compatible with sensitive appliances 

Cons:

  • Light indicators act up from time to time 
  • Sporadic complaints about odors 

5. Giandel PS-1200JCR Pure Sine Wave Power Inverter For RV

Giandel Power Inverter Pure Sine Wave
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Specifications And Features:

  • Voltage: 12V (input); 120V (output)
  • Capacity: 1,200W (continuous); 2,400W (peak)
  • Pure sine wave 
  • Cables with copper wires 
  • Smart cooling 

Why We Love It:

Possessing a slim and slender figure, the Giandel PS-1200JCR is going to fit where other travel trailer inverters don’t. Moreover, since this inverter is light, I don’t have to do much to move it around and set it up. That is why once it comes to ease of installation, this RV for campers is the best RV inverter charger in its price range. With LED display as well as remote control, it facilitates the supervision of DC – AC conversion as well.

The number of outputs of the PS-1200 JCR is low (two outlets and one USB port) so it cannot run too many things simultaneously. In exchange, the use of cables with copper wires boosts efficiency and reduces the amount of power loss. Besides that, with all-around protection, this inverter smoothly deals with reverse polarity, overload, overheat, … Lastly, this inverter restarts on its own when problems pass so there is no need to do anything for power to come back to appliances.

Since the RV inverter made by Giandel is an economical model, the impact of its purchase on my spendings is negligible. Upon purchase, it’s backed by an eighteen-month warranty so if I run into trouble, I can count on Giandel to set things straight. 

Pros:

  • Reasonable price 
  • Second to none shipping 
  • Easy to install   

Cons:

  • Fan is kind of loud 
  • Mounting is hardly adequate 

6. Cantonape 2500W Pure Sine Wave Power Inverter

Cantonape 2500 Watt Pure Sine Wave Power Inverter
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Specifications And Features:

  • Voltage: 11V/12V (input); 110V/120V (output)
  • Capacity: 2,500W (continuous); 5,000W (peak)
  • On/off switch 
  • High-speed cooling fan 
  • Built-in voltage displays 

Why We Love It:

Designed for today’s standards and built to last, Cantonape 2500W seldom let people down in the course of operation. Boasting tip-top capacity (continuous: 2500W and peak: 5,000W), this camper inverter could convert enough power to run multiple appliances at once. In addition to that, as a pure sine model, this inverter for RV always keeps the purity of its power high. As a result, I’m pleased to report that it’s compatible with all sorts of appliances in my rig including sensitive ones. 

One thing I like about the travel trailer Cantonape inverter is that it spaces the outlets apart instead of grouping them close together. Needless to say, I don’t need to worry about the plugs of my appliances getting in the way of each other. Aside from that, thanks to the enduring aluminum construction and in-depth protection, this inverter features a long lifespan. In the case that you have no money to spend on constant inverter replacements, it’s the best RV inverter for you at the moment. 

To keep temperature under control, Cantonape 2500W integrates an intelligent cooling fan that only turns on when the need arises. Thus, this inverter won’t get too noisy for most of the time and that is nice. 

Pros:

  • Plenty of outputs 
  • Setup process is a cakewalk 
  • Rugged 

Cons:

  • Insulation still leaves something to be desired 
  • Irregular breaker trips 

7. GoWISE PS1002 Pure Sine Wave Inverter

GoWISE Power 1000W Pure Sine Wave Inverter
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Specifications And Features:

  • Voltage: 12V (input); 120V (output)
  • Capacity: 1,000W (continuous); 2,000W (peak)
  • Low interference
  • High efficiency 
  • Grey

Why We Love It:

Despite the plain appearance, GoWISE PS1002 is a solid inverter that could keep converting power regardless of the environment. Engineered with thermal, overload, under/overvoltage and low voltage protection, this inverter for campers is able to look after itself as well as my appliances. Furthermore, featuring low interference technology, it won’t restrict the performance of appliances on my rig in any way. Unsurprisingly, RVers that like to bring out the full potential of their RV appliances hold this inverter in high esteem. 

For installation, the RV inverter from GoWISE is good to go as soon as people secure it in place. Compared to standard models, the capacity of this inverter is not exactly impressive but it’s ok for low-load appliances. Considering the modest capacity (continuous and peak alike), it’s natural for this travel trailer inverter to have just two outlets. Nonetheless, a USB port is present too so I have the option of recharging whatever electronics I have on me in times of need. 

To keep PS1002 in good condition, all I have to do is to schedule cleaning sessions from time to time. If you lack the patience to take care of maintenance-intensive inverters while traveling, you won’t regret adding this inverter to your RV. 

Pros:

  • Capacity is consistent 
  • Low noise level 
  • Great values for the price 

Cons:

  • Dirt builds up quickly 
  • Mediocre quality control 

8. Potek ‎PI2000W Power Inverter

POTEK 2000W Power Inverter
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Specifications And Features:

  • Voltage: 12V (input); 120V (output)
  • Capacity: 2,000W (continuous); 4,000W (peak)
  • Intelligent temperature control 
  • Bluetooth receiver 
  • Multipurpose 

Why We Love It:

Carrying three outlets and one USB port in one compact package, Potek ‎PI2000W could convert power for more than one need while occupying little space. In use, this travel trailer inverter is capable of delivering either 2,000W (continuous) or  4,000W (peak). As a result, it’s a wise investment for those that only need to run appliances with small draws. That being said, since it’s made to be a modified sine model, this inverter for campers won’t work too well for sensitive electronics.

The user interface of ‎PI2000W consists of three features: an on/off switch, a light indicator and a power level display. It’s noteworthy that there is a Bluetooth receiver with the ability to connect this inverter to my phone as well. Therefore, all I have to do to manage the inverter from afar is to download the affiliated app to my phone. The app not only displays readings but also allows me to set a timer for the inverter which is convenient in the outdoors. 

Equipped with multilayered protections as well as blade fuses, the inverter from Potek is the best RV inverter converter combo regarding safety. The affordable nature of this inverter means it fits the shopping budget of all sorts of RVers too. 

Pros:

  • Sturdy and stable 
  • Second to none portability 
  • Cheap

Cons:

  • Customer service is barely acceptable 
  • A few RVers report fuse blowing in successions 

9. Xantrex ‎Freedom 458 Inverter Charger

Xantrex 81-2010-12 Inv/Chgr Free-458
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Specifications And Features:

  • Voltage: 12V (input); 120V (output)
  • Capacity: 2,000W (continuous); 6,000W (peak)
  • Automatic transfer switch 
  • Customizable 
  • Battery temperature sensor

Why We Love It:

So you travel around the year and you need to secure DC as well as AC power for your rig? In that case, you would come to like Xantrex ‎Freedom 458 (81-2010-12) and what it could do. Made to be an inverter charger from the ground up, it’s able to recharge battery banks (DC) and run appliances (AC) in use. Owing to the automatic transfer switch, I don’t have to micromanage this inverter as DC and AC power flow through it. 

Since it charges batteries in stages, the Xantrex inverter simultaneously restores the charge level of my battery banks and keeps it out of harm’s way. Moreover, packing a battery temperature sensor for temperature compensation, this travel trailer inverter manages to maintain the charging pace no matter the weather as well.  Because of that, I don’t have to wait too long for the charge level of my RV batteries to go back to 100%. Last but not least, this inverter for RV even utilizes power sharing that minimizes the odds of breakers tripping. 

At a glance, Freedom 458 (81-2010-12) costs more than its contemporaries but the values it delivers match its price tag. On arrival, it’s backed by a warranty that lasts thirty months and covers manufacturing defects too.

Pros:

  • Adaptability is outstanding 
  • Undemanding installation 
  • Strong

Cons:

  • Steep price 
  • Delivery service requires improvements 

10. Go Power GP-SW3000-12 Pure Sine Wave Inverter

Go Power GP-SW3000-12 3000-Watt Pure Sine Wave Inverter
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Specifications And Features:

  • Voltage: 12V (input); 120V (output)
  • Capacity: 3,000W (continuous); 6,000W (peak)
  • GFCI-protected outlets 
  • Hardwire port 
  • Pure since wave 

Why We Love It:

RVing enthusiasts nowadays could choose between multiple inverters for their solar systems but few could outperform Go Power GP-SW3000-12 on the road. This camper inverter boasts a continuous capacity of 3,000W and a peak capacity 6,000W so it matches the demands of small-to-medium solar systems. Aside from that, with all-around protections against over-voltage, under-voltage and overload, it’s well-shielded in the course of operation. As a result, this travel trailer inverter lasts longer than other models and cuts down expenses for repair/replacements. 

In terms of outputs, GP-SW3000-12 contains two GFCI-protected outlets that could power a multitude of appliances on my RV. Also, the presence of a hardwire port enables me to set up a permanent line of power to an appliance when a need arises. Because of that, with this inverter, I have an easy time moving AC power to whatever appliances I have inside my RV. Finally, since it’s a pure sine wave, this inverter features a pure flow of power that fits sensitive appliances. 

For post-purchase support, the RV inverter made by Go Power is backed by a two-year warranty. While the length of the warranty is only so-so, it still puts quite a few RVers who like to stay on the safe side like me at ease. 

Pros:

  • Tough 
  • Dependable and reliable 
  • User-oriented maintenance 

Cons:

  • Low number of outputs 
  • Expensive

How To Choose The Best RV Inverters: Buying Criteria

To purchase the best RV inverter, you need to ensure that your model has some specific features. You should also check the RV inverter reviews when buying a particular model because past users will give honest feedback about the pros and cons of the product.

Power Ratings

The inverter’s power rating should align with your power wattage needs. You need to calculate your maximum power usage on a given day and buy an inverter that can handle that.

For example, if you run two or more appliances simultaneously, consuming between 500 and 700 watts of power, the inverter’s power rating should be at least 1000 watts. You can buy a smaller unit if you don’t run multiple devices at the same time.

Input and Output Voltage

The standard AC power is 120V in North America and some parts of South and Central America. So, your inverter has to offer a 120-volt AC output to work with these appliances.

Also, it has to handle a 12V input voltage since most trailers use a 12V battery pack. However, some large RVs could have a 24V, 36V, or 48V unit. The inverter must be powerful enough to handle both input and output voltage.

Surge Capacity

An inverter has a surge rating, referring to its capacity to handle short power bursts. It’s an essential factor for choosing the best RV inverter because many appliances consume a high amount of power at the time of starting.
For instance, a coffee maker draws more power when heating the water than at the time of brewing.

All appliances have a surge rating that you should account for when calculating the surge capacity of the inverter. If you want to run three devices simultaneously and their combined surge rating is 400W, choose an inverter that can handle at least 10 to 20% extra surge.

Efficiency

Most RV inverters are pretty efficient and capable of converting almost 90% of the power when it comes to power efficiency. An inefficient unit will significantly spike the energy consumption, drawing more power from the battery but supplying less power to the appliances.

To avoid unexpected power loss, you need to choose the best RV inverter. Ideally, a pure sine wave type can provide a reliable power supply without consuming too much battery energy.

Low Voltage Alarm

An inverter will keep drawing power from the battery pack, causing its voltage to drop, which is harmful to the battery’s health. Many inverters these days come with a low-voltage alarm to prevent such damage.

Some models go one step ahead and shut the power down when the battery voltage drops below a certain level.

Remote Control

It’s not an essential feature but having a remote control makes your life easier. It’s nothing but a switch that you can remotely turn on and off with a remote control device.

USB Ports

The best RV inverter doesn’t need USB ports, but it’s a handy feature. You can plug USB-run electronics directly through these ports without using an extra USB charger.

rv power inverter
A top-grade inverter should be highly efficient. Photo: RVing Trends

Ease Of Installation 

Generally speaking, you always have the option of hiring someone to set up the inverter in your stead. However, if you wish to save money by cutting down on non-essential spendings, you should opt for a model that you could install on your own.

Usually, if you inspect the dimension, the weight, the material and so on, it’s possible to tell if an inverter is easy to install. In the case that you believe the setup process to be challenging, move on to the next model. 

Safety 

In everything that involves electricity, one minor issue may lead to serious consequences if people don’t have contingencies. If you care about your RV and the appliances on it, you have to keep safety in mind as you search for the best RV inverter. For instance, it won’t hurt to prioritize models that automatically shut down when there is an overload, short-circuit, etc.

Aside from that, there is no need to worry about overheating in hot weather if your inverter incorporates high-performance cooling fans.

FAQs About RV Inverters

1. Is an RV inverter worth it?

To put it plainly, if you intend to use the battery bank of your RV to power AC appliances, the inverter is a must-have. Unless you set up an inverter for DC – AC conversion, it’s impossible for appliances to run on battery power. Naturally, with the appliance starved of power, your level of comfort on the road is going to suffer. Therefore, before hitting the road, you should ensure that you have the best inverter for RV onboard. 

2. Who makes the best RV inverters? 

At the moment, various brands make purpose-design inverters for campers, motorhomes, travel trailers and so on. However, if you wish to stay on the safe side, you have to keep an eye out for models from the following names:

Krieger: By placing an emphasis on automation, Krieger makes it easy for RVers to manage its inverters as they convert DC into AC. In addition to that, since Krieger models have intuitive maintenance, there is no need to give them special care. You have a busy schedule so you cannot pay a lot of attention to your inverter? Then you won’t regret adding inverters made by Krieger to your shortlist. 

Energizer: Once it comes to batteries and associated accessories, Energizer is the brand of choice for many RVers around the globe. Dependable and reliable, inverters from Energizer give a good account of themselves in a wide range of settings. Moreover, as proof of confidence, Energizer backs its inverters with tip-top warranties. Needless to say, RVing enthusiasts who seek peace of mind think highly of inverters of Energizer.

Ampeak: As a long-established brand, Ampeak knows what people expect from RV inverters in the outdoors and engineers its models accordingly. Because of that, Ampeak inverters rarely let RVers down in the course of operation regardless of the situation. In addition, since Ampeak releases models across the price points, a couple of options exist for every shopping budget. The longevity of inverters from Ampeak helps camper owners save money as time passes by too. 

Giandel: Thanks to the philosophy that revolves around adaptability, Giandel as well as its inverters earn a shower of praises from no-nonsense RVing enthusiasts. Versatile and flexible, inverters made by Giandel could support quite a few arrangements with relative ease. Aside from that, on average, the capacity of Giandel models is enough to power all sorts of appliances in time of need. Therefore, if you own a Giandel inverter, rest assured knowing that you would have a high level of comfort while traveling. 

3. Should I leave my RV inverter on all the time?

It depends.

Overall, you need to avoid leaving your inverter on around the clock since it draws power even though you don’t use anything. If you forget to turn off your inverter, there is a chance that it’s going to deplete the batteries and leave them dead. Still, if you have appliances that must stay working 24/7 (for instance, fridges), feel free to leave your inverter on all the time. By doing so, you could secure a steady supply of AC power for your appliances. 

4. What size inverter do I need for my RV?

To deduce the ideal size for your inverter, it’s widely advised that you give the following factors some thought:

Appliances: How many appliances do you have on your RV? Is it necessary to keep the appliance up all the time? What is the average power consumption of your place? By answering the questions, you could get a general idea about how big your inverter needs to be. 

Battery bank: There is a relationship between the size of the battery bank and the size of the inverter. For instance, if you place a small battery bank on your RV, you can’t expect it to run power-hungry AC appliances for more than several hours. Thus, there is no need to convert a lot of power from DC to AC on the road. With that in mind, to be efficient, you should stick to standard inverters instead of picking up a high-capacity model that you have no use for.  

Power draw: In case you don’t know, the power draw of particular appliances surges during startup and you need to take that into account. While modern inverters could handle short surges, it’s best to make provision for surges as you calculate the size of your inverter. Keep in mind that the label may be deceptive: Many brands place big numbers on top of their model to make an impression. However, the small letters under the numbers say that the inverter could only supply a lower draw for extended periods. 

5. How to install a power inverter in a camper?

Since the setup process varies from model to model, you should look for instructions in the owner’s manual of your inverter. To install run-of-the-mill RV inverters, you must go through two phases: preparation and execution. 

PREPARATION 

For the installation to proceed smoothly, it’s essential to get your hands on a couple of tools: screwdrivers, wirecuters, wrenches, etc. In addition, as you do the wiring, you need to have wires, connectors, electrical tapes and so on. For your well-being, it’s strongly recommended that you secure personal protective equipment as well. You can never be too careful around electricity so don’t start until you have what it takes to stay safe. 

EXECUTION
 
Step 1: Select a spot for your inverter

Today’s inverters for travel trailers occupy less space than their predecessors but you can overlook the importance of location. For most of the time, you should put the inverter close to your battery bank to minimize the loss of electricity. Furthermore, for safety reasons, it’s a good idea to position the inverter away from sources of heat. Finally, moisture, dust and others influence the performance of inverters so keep your inverter shielded. 

Step 2: Do the wiring 

To make use of an inverter, you have to connect it to the batteries and the AC box on your RV. Naturally, you have to think it through as you choose the wire for the wiring. Here is the rule of thumb: the higher the load, the thicker the wire. It’s worth pointing out that the wire diameter decreases as the wire size increases. Hence, if you select a high-capacity inverter for your power-hungry rig, keep the wire size low.

Note: A lot of inverters nowadays incorporate outlets that let people connect their appliances to them directly. Only some of your appliances require AC power? Then don’t hesitate to connect the appliances to the inverter instead of wiring the inverter to the AC box. Nonetheless, considering the distance to cover, you likely have to grab extension cables. 

Step 3: Ground the inverter 
You can ground your inverter in multiple ways. If you own an average rig, it’s wise to use the chassis for ease of convenience. 

6. How to use an RV inverter?

The nature of your inverter dictates the way you use it

If you own a portable inverter: Connect your inverter to an DC outlet on your RV, connect your AC appliances to the inverter outlets and turn it on. As long as your battery bank still contains charge, the inverter is going to keep converting power from DC to AC.

If you own a permanent inverter: To take advantage of your inverter, you have to think about the wiring. For instance, if the inverter is present in the default configuration of your RV, there is a chance that it only provides AC power to certain outlets. On the other hand, if the inverter is part of aftermarket modifications, it may supply AC power to every outlet on your RV. To get your money’s worth, use the right outlet for the right appliance. 

7. How do I reset my RV inverter?

Soft Reset 
Step 1: Locate your inverter
Step 2: Remove all external connections 
Step 3: Press and hold the Power button 
Step 4: When the LED flashes on and off, release the Power button 
Step 5: Allow the inverter to shut down, wait a bit then hit Power button to turn it on

Hard Reset 
Step 1: Locate your inverter
Step 2: Remove all external connections 
Step 3: Disconnect the inverter from the battery bank  
Step 4: Wait for thirty seconds then reconnects the inverter  
Step 5: Hit the Power button to turn on the inverter 

8. How do you know if your RV converter is bad?

You would be able to determine whether your RV converter is in need of repair/replacement by using a multimeter. 

In the beginning, locate the inputs of your inverter then place the multimeter wires on the terminals (positive on positive – negative on negative). If your inverter is working as designed, the multimeter should show 12V DC. Next, go to the outputs of your inverter, repeat the test and check out the reading. Assuming that the multimeter shows 110V AC, you could conclude that your inverter is in good condition. 

9. How much does an RV inverter cost?

Presently, you only need to spend around $150 to pick up an entry-level inverter for campers. Your demands exceed the capabilities of low-end models on the market? Then you should increase your shopping budget to at least $300. Of course, in the case that you want the best of the best, feel free to go beyond $300.

Conclusion

Following this guide will help you land the best RV inverter on the market. Of course, the final decision will depend on your needs. We hope that now you have a clear idea about the functions of an RV inverter and which features make a unit better than others.

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