Power Inverters, also known as power supply units or power converters, are a great way to power electronic devices when there is not a ready electrical outlet present but there is DC power available. When it comes to choosing a power inverter, there are a number of available options out on the market, each with a variety of different features. The basic concept of a power inverter is that it can convert a car’s 12 volt direct current power into the same type of alternating current power available from a wall socket, enabling electronics to charge while traveling. They work in cars, boats, or anywhere else equipped with a cigarette lighter adapter (DC Adapter).
Why run the risks of losing power to your essential electronics, when you can always have a backup power source ready for use almost anywhere an electrical current is generated? Power inverters work especially well for charging laptops, DVD players, digital cameras, radar detectors, cell phones, PDA’s, printers, digital cameras, external hard drives, personal media players, flash drives, scanners, iPods, MP3 players, video games, and much more.
On the market you can find an ever-increasing number of different power inverters. They all perform the basic function of charging your electronic devices, but each has its own particular features that may suit one person’s needs better than another’s. There are power inverters that can provide power for one, two, three, or four plugs simultaneously. There are also power inverters that contain USB ports that can charge USB-enabled devices; this can add to the functionality of your power inverter if you carry around devices like the popular iPhone.
Power inverters also differ in the amount of power they supply. Some emit more wattage to charge larger items, while others emit smaller amounts of wattage for electronics with smaller energy demands. This is an important feature to keep in mind, which can help prevent battery drainage and preserve your car battery’s life. When buying a new power inverter it’s best to look if it has an automatic kill switch or switching regulator (available in switched-mode power supplies) so that your car’s battery never reaches a critical point. It can be quite frustrating to see your car battery die, but your laptop fully charged.
A nice feature to look for is a long, extendable cord to reach far away electronics. You may also want a swivel head if your cigarette lighter adapter is placed in a difficult-to-access location. This will help adjust the positioning and make sure it will not slip out of place for maximum convenience. Some power inverters also come with replaceable fuses–one of the most likely parts to fail–and the ability to replace the fuse is more convenient and efficient than having to replace the whole inverter.
Remember, when choosing a new DC-to-AC inverter examine the features, the power output level, number of available receptacles, and pricing to ensure that you purchase the right inverter for your needs. Every year new and more efficient inverters hit the market, so happy hunting and read the reviews before purchasing and you’ll be sure to find just the right inverter you need.