running on 12 volt question

Discussion in 'First Time & New Camper Owners' started by rism47, Jul 1, 2015.

  1. rism47

    rism47 New Member

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    Hi all. We've been tenting for years and just bought a project popup this fall. The usual wood rot from leaks but overall a great deal for $200. We just too two back to back short trips this week. 1st had electric hookups and the second didn't. When on shore power, the centurion cs 1200 had power to 120v plugs and fridge and 12v lights and heater. Second trip run in off battery, we had no 120v power. Does the inverter only change 120 to 12v, or should it also convert 12v to 120v? Let's just say our first luxury let down was a non functioning Keurig.

    Thanks for the help!
     
  2. champ1fc

    champ1fc Member

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    I'm commenting so I can follow your thread.
     
  3. mcbrew

    mcbrew Member

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    Most likely, you only have a 'converter' and not an 'inverter'. It will convert 120v AC to 12v DC, but not the other way around.

    Your 120v outlets will not work if you don't have hookups.
     
  4. Customer

    Customer Well-Known Member

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    You have a converter and it does not produce 120vac from the battery.
     
  5. daschnoz

    daschnoz Active Member

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    What others have said -- 120Vac -> 12VDC only.

    Sorry for your loss. I understand what a good cup of coffee means first thing in the morning. [:D]

    Generally speaking, anything in a PUP that requires heat is better left to a propane flame. There are some 12VDC conventional coffee makers, but their reviews are mixed. I don't know if anyone makes a 12VDC single serve machine yet.



    If you want to run things like fans or even a small flat screen TV, you're much better off finding stuff that runs on 12VDC.

    Inverters (really, power supplies of all types) require power to do their thing. If you need 5 watts of power at the output, the inverter may draw 7 watts of power from the battery (a bit better than 70% efficient using those numbers). Most of that extra energy (2 watts for this example) is usually turned into heat. Save that extra energy for something else or for later in the trip.

    The same thing for fans. 12VDC fans are a bit pricy, but they are cheaper than an inverter.

    Now, if you're running a laptop, they do make car power supplies for some laptops. It takes the 12VDC input and converts it to the 19VDC or so that most laptops these days need. They run around $100. Yes, you can get an inverter for that much (or less), but the inverter route is not going to be as efficient - not only will you have the losses in the inverter, you will have the losses in the laptop power supply as well. From an energy efficiency standpoint, you're better off with the single step "specialty" cable.
     
  6. nineoaks2004

    nineoaks2004 Every meal is a picnic and every Day is a holiday

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    The DC battery runs all 12 volt items, when plugged in to 110V AC the electric goes through a convertor, not an inventor, the convertor changes the 110 V AC to 12v DC and some of them charges the battery. An inverter changes the 12 V DC to 110V AC . I doubt you have an inverter.
    So bottom line to run the 110 V items you need to be plugged in to 110 V AC or a generator for the AC and other AC items to be used.
     
  7. rism47

    rism47 New Member

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    Thanks everyone. I did miss the fact it is a converter not an inverter. This is a great site with great people willing to help.

    Thanks again.
     
  8. Milehifireguy

    Milehifireguy New Member

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