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Old 09-17-2019, 09:25 PM   #1
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1000 Watt Converter (Inverter really) general questions

I am considering getting a Geo Pro 16BH which comes with a 1000 Watt Converter. My general understanding is that this will take power from my camper batteries and convert it so I can plug into the 120v outlets. I don't need to know the how/why this is possible, I just have questions about the use thereafter.

1. Do you leave your converter "on" all the time, or only when you need power. Mostly wondering in terms of charging my teenager's electronic devices overnight.
2. I assume I have an auto option and a LP only selection on the fridge - but would there actually even be enough power to run the fridge - and for how long?
3. And speaking of enough power - salesman is telling me I would have enough to run the microwave. Is that even close to true - and if yes, for how long? He was talking about cooking a chicken in the convection microwave!?!

Any other input on the use of the converter would be awesome. Thanks bunches
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Old 09-17-2019, 09:28 PM   #2
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I believe you are referring to an inverter, not a converter.


This thread may help





Converter or Inverter (they are different)
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Old 09-17-2019, 09:31 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by wmtire View Post
I believe you are referring to an inverter, not a converter.
Oh probably - if I actually read the full item on the rockwood website it says: "a roof mount solar panel with a 1000 Watt converter" - so that must be the sun energy to the batteries, and then the inverter is from the batteries to the outlets......anyway, my questions still stand and I thank you for the extra link.
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Old 09-17-2019, 09:36 PM   #4
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Think you are asking about the inverter ( converts 12VDC to 120VAC). The converter converts 120VAC to 12VDC. I would turn the inverter off when not needed as it will consume some power even when no 120VAC is being used. You can run some larger AC appliances for a short time, not sure about the microwave as most microwaves are 1000W or more. The easiest way to think about this is for every amp of AC current you use, you will need 10A DC current. Not sure what battery(s) you have but most dealers add marine deep cycle batteries that are not really deep cycle batteries. Check the 12V information in the library section of the forum ( see Library in green bar).



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Originally Posted by LeonineThor View Post
I am considering getting a Geo Pro 16BH which comes with a 1000 Watt Converter. My general understanding is that this will take power from my camper batteries and convert it so I can plug into the 120v outlets. I don't need to know the how/why this is possible, I just have questions about the use thereafter.

1. Do you leave your converter "on" all the time, or only when you need power. Mostly wondering in terms of charging my teenager's electronic devices overnight.
2. I assume I have an auto option and a LP only selection on the fridge - but would there actually even be enough power to run the fridge - and for how long?
3. And speaking of enough power - salesman is telling me I would have enough to run the microwave. Is that even close to true - and if yes, for how long? He was talking about cooking a chicken in the convection microwave!?!

Any other input on the use of the converter would be awesome. Thanks bunches
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Old 09-17-2019, 09:51 PM   #5
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My question is, being a new RV owner, are you planning to camp where you do not have access to power? The questions you are asking, really only come into play if you are boondocking or staying at places where there is no 120 volt AC power. If you are at a campground with power, then you just plug your shore power cord in, and the outlets will be powered.

Here is an excerpt from the Rockwood Geo pro brochure

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Old 09-17-2019, 09:56 PM   #6
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My question is, being a new RV owner, are you planning to camp where you do not have access to power? The questions you are asking, really only come into play if you are boondocking or staying at places where there is no 120 volt AC power. If you are at a campground, then you just plug your shore power cord in, and the outlets will be powered.

Attachment 215261
Totally boondocking - most of the campgrounds I frequent either don't have power, or charge more and are noisy on the electric loops, so I go to the tent side anyway. I'm looking for a new RV, but I've been trailer camping for many many moons, but this idea of solar and inverters is new to me.
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:00 PM   #7
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A 1000W inverter is not large enough for the microwave. I tried running my 800W microwave off of our 1000W inverter and it tripped it into overload quickly.

Even if it did, the amount of power drawn from the batteries by the microwave would be intense for a couple minutes. It’s complete BS for the salesman to claim it’ll run it for the duration of cooking a turkey!
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:02 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by LeonineThor View Post
Totally boondocking - most of the campgrounds I frequent either don't have power, or charge more and are noisy on the electric loops, so I go to the tent side anyway. I'm looking for a new RV, but I've been trailer camping for many many moons, but this idea of solar and inverters is new to me.
Gotcha. As per the excerpt from Rockwood, you have a 100 watt solar panel and a 1000 watt inverter.

The solar panel is for recharging your 12 volt DC batteries via sunlight. The inverter is for providing power from the batteries to some 120 volt AC items. Normally this inverter will not be connected but just to a few things, and maybe just a few outlets.

To accurately give an estimation, we would need to know how many batteries you are going to be using and their sizing. Then we can give a good guesstimate on how much stuff you can use for how long before depleting the battery or batteries.
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:09 PM   #9
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well first off, is inverters (12VDC to 120VAC) consume a lot of power from the batteries. Even if you are only using 100 watts of AC power ( think a standard light bulb) you are pulling 10+ amps from the battery. that is a lot. Inverters can be very inefficient. You will put more WATTS into the inverter then you will get out.

Charging most electronics only requires 5V usually from a USB plug. Putting more cigar lighter plugs that supply 12VDC and plugging in those USB adapters to get to 5VDC is a much better option. Even a laptop... you can purchase 12VDC adapters to power a laptop.

The first thing to think about when boondocking is adding more battery capacitiy or get a genset and run it during the day ( or a couple of hundred watts of solar) to recharge the battery(s). Most on here will tell you to get 2 OR 4 six volt golf cart batteries for the added capacity. Of course you have to find a place to mount them.

Keep asking questions... you will get the answers that you seek.
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:09 PM   #10
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To accurately give an estimation, we would need to know how many batteries you are going to be using and their sizing. Then we can give a good guesstimate on how much stuff you can use for how long before depleting the battery or batteries.
2 6V golf cart batteries is what the dealer says they recommend. Or just 1 12V deep cycle (not the POS rockwood will ship it out with though). Batteries are a whole different post.......
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:17 PM   #11
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2 6V golf cart batteries is what the dealer says they recommend. Or just 1 12V deep cycle (not the POS rockwood will ship it out with though). Batteries are a whole different post.......
Rocked doesn't provide batteries. The POS you get is the choice of your dealer.
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:29 PM   #12
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If you have the right microwave ...........

You CAN run a microwave from a 1000W inverter ... if you have the right microwave and enough battery capacity.

My inverter is 900W and runs my Panasonic microwave just fine. Just not at full power. The Panasonic microwave is an inverter type. As such, unlike most, it does not draw full power (usually 1300W or more) and switch that power on and off to cook more slowly. 1300W will trip a 1000W inverter very quickly. But, the Panasonic inverter microwaves, when turned down, draw less power and draw it continuously. If I run the microwave on level 5 (it has 10 levels) it draws about 700W. Typically we set it on level 5 and double the normal cooking time. Easy peasy.

The microwave is rated 950W and costs about $110. It's not a full size unit but a good RV size, at least for us.

For things like oatmeal that boils over if cooked too fast, it's perfect. Whole oat oatmeal won't boil over on level 4 and that's a big part of our use. It draw about 600W on level 4.

For heating a mug of coffee, level 5 takes a bit over 3 minutes while at full power it would be about 1.5 minutes or a bit more.

Baking potatoes works fine on level 5. Just takes twice as long as normal.

Now, about battery capacity. A 1000W inverter draws about 80 amps at full power. This indeed does eat up battery ampere hours. Worse, most inverters will shut down if the 12V voltage drops down to around 11.5V. A fully charged lead-acid battery voltage won't drop this low, but when the charge gets down around 50% 80A can drop voltage to 11.5. And maybe at 60% on older batteries.

I did use this 900W inverter and Panasonic Microwave on a pair of 6V 232 AH batteries for about three years. As the batteries got older, the voltage would drop sooner so inverter trip-off got to be a nuisance. Then we got an LFP battery and now voltage never gets low enough to trip the inverter even when the LFP is down around 20% charge (I don't take it lower). Also, we have over 200 AH of capacity so can run the microwave to our hearts content.

So, if you are just heating coffee now and then, you won't need much battery. If you do baked potatoes (might take 20 minutes at half power), you'll need more battery capacity.

BTW, the Panasonic inverter microwave just works really well in other respects. We have the same unit in our kitchen at home.
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Old 09-17-2019, 10:37 PM   #13
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I'll be following as I will be picking up my 16BH in less than a month. My plan for it is to spend weekends on the beach during the summer in addition to some trips every year.

I'm already planning on a pair of 100ah lithium batteries, but not sure if I need to change anything else out in the unit or just drop them in; advice?

Also want to pick up a 3400w dual fuel inverter generator plus a soft start for the a/c.
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:27 AM   #14
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I'll be following as I will be picking up my 16BH in less than a month. My plan for it is to spend weekends on the beach during the summer in addition to some trips every year.

I'm already planning on a pair of 100ah lithium batteries, but not sure if I need to change anything else out in the unit or just drop them in; advice?

Also want to pick up a 3400w dual fuel inverter generator plus a soft start for the a/c.
Your choice of a 16BH suggests a smaller tow vehicle. Buying Li batteries suggests use of battery power more than generator.

If either or both are true, a 3400W generator is pretty heavy. Did you consider 2200W? It's probably more than adequate, especially with a soft start on the AC.

Even if you have a larger vehicle, a 3400 is a lot to lug around. 2 2200's linked together accomplish the same and you have the option of using only one. Admittedly, that arrangement may be more hassle if you're built like a linebacker and will always need more power.
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Old 09-18-2019, 04:33 PM   #15
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Your choice of a 16BH suggests a smaller tow vehicle.

2006 Chevy Trailblazer (Truck chassis, 5700lb tow capacity). Yes, chosen for the weight, but more to minimize stressing my TV when fully loaded up to 4K lbs & pulling on the beach.

Buying Li batteries suggests use of battery power more than generator.

Still debating on Li vs an Optima (or other AGM); the A/C will be a requirement (wife's comfort) during summer months plus use of microwave which (from what I read) will require generator or shore power

If either or both are true, a 3400W generator is pretty heavy. Did you consider 2200W? It's probably more than adequate, especially with a soft start on the AC.

A few things lead me to the 3400 dual fuel inverter
-Propane is easier to transport and no worry about spilling in TT or TV
-Less than 100lbs and the dimensions fit into compartment where the extra fridge is (removing fridge)
-I can use it to power fridge, burner and a few lights in my house if there's a power outage
-Low noise level so I don't disturb neighbors when camping
One of the main things I know I will need to determine once I get my TT is what converter it has, so I can better assess what's going to be required for the batteries.
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Old 09-18-2019, 05:40 PM   #16
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Your choice of a 16BH suggests a smaller tow vehicle. Buying Li batteries suggests use of battery power more than generator.

If either or both are true, a 3400W generator is pretty heavy. Did you consider 2200W? It's probably more than adequate, especially with a soft start on the AC.

Even if you have a larger vehicle, a 3400 is a lot to lug around. 2 2200's linked together accomplish the same and you have the option of using only one. Admittedly, that arrangement may be more hassle if you're built like a linebacker and will always need more power.
I have a Champion 3500W Dual Fuel Inverter and yes, it is heavy. 112 pounds but even at my age (76 going on 77 soon) I can still lift mine ether into the back of my Titan P/U or to the platform on the rear bumper of my TT. Once in either position, that's where I run it.

Two 2,000 watt units will add up about the same weight including the parallel kit so there's no savings on total weight. Also, a small generator being operated at it's max power output is often noisier than a larger unit idling along on "Eco Mode". Three weeks ago this was demonstrated with my "neighbor" running his little red 2 KW inverter generator and I was running my 3500W Inverter Generator. Mine was idling along on Eco Mode and every time my neighbor's wife turned on the "Keurig" his generator kicked on high power and drowned out the sound of my generator.

My single generator will run both AC and Microwave at the same time. Battery charging will also consume half the output of a 2kw generator as the converter will be drawing Close to 1,000 Watts.
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Old 09-18-2019, 05:57 PM   #17
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If you have the ability, I strongly recommend you do a dry run in your driveway. 100W of solar is essentially going to provide you with enough charging capacity to run the basics and nothing fancy ( microwave, A/C etc), but don't take my word for it try it. Charge the batteries, try running what you think you will need to run, check the batteries then allow it a day of charging and check batteries again. a 100W panel is going to provide about 5 AHr in full sun, if you have an 8 hr day you will get approx 40AHr or 500WHrs. A 1000W microwave uses 500WHrs for less than 30 minutes of use.
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Old 09-18-2019, 06:07 PM   #18
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A 1000W microwave uses 500WHrs for less than 30 minutes of use.

30 min's is a long time for a microwave. My usage runs more like 6 mins (max) for a TV dinner, 3 min's for popcorn, and two min's to heat water for a cup of coffee
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Old 09-18-2019, 06:09 PM   #19
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A 1000W microwave uses 500WHrs for less than 30 minutes of use.

30 min's is a long time for a microwave. My usage runs more like 6 mins (max) for a TV dinner, 3 min's for popcorn, and two min's to heat water for a cup of coffee

Sometimes I wonder why I have the microwave but then again I was in my 30's before I got my first one.
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Old 09-18-2019, 06:09 PM   #20
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Yes for popcorn, but in OP he says" He was talking about cooking a chicken in the convection microwave!?!"
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