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Auto Power Converter

By Edited Jul 17, 2016 0 0

Power Inverter 175W

What is an auto power converter?

A car power converter, more accurately referred to as a auto power "inverter" is a device used to convert the power generated by your car's engine into 120V AC power that many of the items we use everyday run off of. Whether you are looking for a laptop car charger, or a just a way to plug in your portable DVD player, an auto power converter is a cheap way to use all of the electronics you love on the road. Many people find that long road trips are much more enjoyable if you are able to watch movies, play games, or get work done on your notebook using a ac dc power supply.

How an auto power inverter works:

The type of power your battery generates is called 12V DC power. This is very useful for the parts of your car that require consistent power, but when you want to use devices that require alternating currents, like a laptop, gaming device, or DVD player, you must convert the 12V DC power coming from your battery into a more stable 120V alternating current. Modern car inverters use oscillator circuits to produce the alternating current of electricity. However there is one problem. The AC electricity coming into your house looks like a "sine" wave, meaning the changing of current is smooth and fluid.

A simple oscillating circuit will create a very choppy and square wave. Therefore there are a number of "filters" that must be applied to make the wave more curved rather than square. This is where the expense of an auto power converter can really add up. The most expensive inverters will have sine waves that are smoother than the electricity in your home. Cheap car inverters have very square looking waves which may affect the performance of some electronics.

How to choose the right wattage car inverter:

The amount of power you'll need will depend entirely on the devices you are going to try to use in the car. The best way to determine how many watt inverter you will need is to add up the electricity of all the devices you plan on using. For example if you want to charge your laptop and cellphone at the same time, you would look on the label and see how many watts each charger requires. For example a macbook pro 13.3 inch charger uses 60W, and an iphone 4 charger uses about 7 watts. Therefore, any auto power inverter over 100W would be just fine, if those where the only items you would use. However, if you wanted to use a coffee maker that uses 1000W, you would need a much more expensive inverter.

Where to buy cheap car power inverters:

The best deals on car power inverters are usually found on authority websites like Amazon.com, but if you are in need of an inverter for a last minute trip, deals on power converters can be found at many truck stops along the highway. Always be sure to check the wattage of the electronics you wish to use, and buy an auto power converter that exceeds your demand.
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