Who said being off-grid was uncomfortable? Well not if you get yourself one of those: a power inverter will allow you to plug into a car cigar lighter or a solar panel to power your computer on your boat or in your tent.
Power inverters convert DC power from a battery or a cigarette lighter to AC electricity and can run most household appliances. Before getting an inverter determine how much power you need. A phone charger needs 20watts, a colour TV 60watts and a laptop computer about the same. Be careful — toasters and hair dryers are big power consumers and can require as much as 1000watts! Power consumption is usually indicated at the back of electrical appliances and tools. If you want to run more than one appliance at once, add up the wattage each appliance needs and get an inverter with a rating a bit higher than the number you get.
A small power inverter is useful to run small electronic devices from a cigarette lighter. 150 watts ones are available, 28.55 from EuroBatteries.com
For slightly more power, AC/DC Power Inverters make a 400 watts power inverter that can be pluged in a cigarette lighter or connected to a car battery with crocodile clips. Price $29.75
To power bigger devices at home Coleman PowerMate 1200-2400 watt power inverter is what you need. The cheapest we’ve found was $119 from Kitchen and Home Gadgets
Or Izzy 1200W professional from EuroBatteries.com. Price 225
Buy our book - OFF THE GRID - a tour of American off-grid places and people written by Nick Rosen, editor of the off-grid.net web site
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