Quick Guide To Power Inverters

Imagine working with a certain contractor that travels from place to place to attend to clients. And, you are his trusted electrician who works with all the electrical services to clients. What do you think is one the most important item you should carry along now and then?

No doubt – you need power inverters. As an electrician, either working solely or with a certain contractor, you will need a mobile and flexible power source to use whenever you are servicing a certain client. As an electrician, a power inverter is part of your set of tools. With the use of power inverters, you can perform a dry run of equipments you for clients to either diagnose it or test if an equipment is already working fine.

But what exactly are power inverters?

A power inverter is an electrical converter that allows DC or direct current to be changed to AC or alternating current. These inverters are connected to appropriate transformers, switching controls and circuits. Obviously, it works the opposite of rectifiers.

Why does a DC need to be converted into AC?

Direct currents are electrical charges that flow coming from batteries and types of solar cells. They flow into one single and constant path towards a certain device. Alternating currents work the other way around. Instead of having one single and constant path, it is a form of electrical charge which periodically reverses unlike DC.

DC’s are converted to AC because it can only provide low-voltage power to devices which in return causes an exhausting transfer of the electrical charge. By converting it into AC, the amount of power used in transporting DC to a device is less exhausting and that it saves an amount of energy and heat that it creates. To be able to convert direct current into alternating current, power inverters increased the voltage of the DC until it becomes an AC. The AC then turns back to DC to power an appliance – thus creating an easier and less energy consuming power distribution and generation. Most devices these days have built in rectifiers to convert incoming AC back to DC charge.

power inverters

Several Uses of Power inverters

  1. Power Source Utilization for Direct Currents
  • DC charges are utilized and converted into suitable electrical AC charges to supply power generation needs – mostly on large scale power distribution like residential homes.
  1. Act as a support for power supplies
  • When generators work and main power source is not available, power inverters act as a means to convert the reserved DC charge to be used as a support source for power supplies. Once the main power source is back, rectifiers creates DC power to supply back to the batteries where the support electrical charges came from.
  1. Air conditioning purposes
  • Makes use of variable-frequency drives to control speed of the motor and the compressor of an air conditioning device.

How to choose the right power inverter?

  • Determine the size of inverter you need by:
    • Knowing how much AC they produce
    • Adding up the wattage of each appliance or device that you usually run to ensure sufficient AC is supplied from the inverter.
  • Determine the output and input voltage you need:
    • 12V or 24V?
    • Make sure to choose an inverter that has the same voltage of the battery suppling to it.
  • Determine how long can it support your equipment without AC power.
    • Small in-vehicle inverters power equipments for a long period of time as long as engine is running and battery can supply power needs.
    • Large inverter charges powers extended period of times and can work with multiple batteries.

Whatever the case would be, power inverters can be very suitable to any electricians’ work these days. Not only a power source that is flexible and mobile, but also a power source which you can rely on for your work purposes.

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Photo source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/andyarthur/6947669926/

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