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Old 06-02-2015, 08:23 PM   #21
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The inverter lets you use 120-volt, alternating current (AC) appliances even when you're not plugged in to a current bush. It does this by turning 12-volt DC power from your batteries into 120-volt AC power.

And it only does this to one outlet in your trailer unless you also acquire the Transfer Switch -- which allows you to switch all the 120-volt outlets in your trailer over to the inverter. I wouldn't get the inverter without also getting the transfer switch.

Note: at 1500 watts, the inverter is still not powerful enough to run air conditioning. Just use a fan and drink cold beer, jump in a lake, etc.

One more thing: the inverter comes with some overhead -- that is, it uses up some of your battery power just to do the conversion. So you have to use it judiciously. I think most people who get inverters also have solar, to help keep the battery charged.

We didn't get one, but some people need them (say, for CPAP devices), or enjoy them, or both.
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Old 06-02-2015, 08:31 PM   #22
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Super-helpful. Thanks.
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Old 06-02-2015, 08:59 PM   #23
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Sounds like it might be nice to have the inverter to run my wife's curling iron, my coffee grinder, watch a little TV, warm up a dinner plate in the microwave, and avoid buying a bunch of 6V adaptors. Do most people find that the solar panel keeps the batteries charged up enough to actually use smaller appliances like this? And do you need the second battery for this?
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Old 06-02-2015, 09:07 PM   #24
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What about the 2-way hot water tank? Seems like propane would be good enough. Does the AC option really save enough propane to make it worth it?
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Old 06-02-2015, 09:12 PM   #25
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If you are ever plugged into a campground, you have paid to use the electric. Do not need to use your propane and pay for it, too. If you plan to be at campgrounds some of the time, dual would be good to have. Also think it was one of the items important to our buyer.
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Old 06-02-2015, 09:22 PM   #26
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How critical is the surge protector? Is the Escape one high quality? I'll be working on my computer a lot since we're taking our business (online education) on the road. Don't want to fry my precious Mac. Thanks for all you who are indulging these questions. I know I could probably root around and find answers in past forums but this is so much more fun. :-)
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Old 06-02-2015, 09:53 PM   #27
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In finishing our build sheet we loaded it up pretty good saying better to have and not need than need and not have. One thing we didn't plan on getting but threw in at the last minute was the stereo. The favorable exchange rate allowed for a few extras. We protect our electronics at home with a surge protector so I would do it on the road also. As others have said, the storage box is a must. Plus it does double duty and acts as a rock shield. What we didn't get was the 3 burner stove, oven, screen room, additional front window, and custom formica and fabric. We were very happy with the colors ETI has standard. Just remember, the build sheet will be due sooner than you think. Loren
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Old 06-02-2015, 10:11 PM   #28
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In finishing our build sheet we loaded it up pretty good saying better to have and not need than need and not have. One thing we didn't plan on getting but threw in at the last minute was the stereo. The favorable exchange rate allowed for a few extras. We protect our electronics at home with a surge protector so I would do it on the road also. As others have said, the storage box is a must. Plus it does double duty and acts as a rock shield. What we didn't get was the 3 burner stove, oven, screen room, additional front window, and custom formica and fabric. We were very happy with the colors ETI has standard. Just remember, the build sheet will be due sooner than you think. Loren
Ha, ha, yes, when we put out our build sheets, maybe we should just list what we did not get. So many of the options seem to be more necessary than not. Necessary to us anyway.

And, yes, no matter how much time you spend on the build sheet, you probably need more.
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Old 06-02-2015, 11:01 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Maury&Julie View Post
What about the 2-way hot water tank? Seems like propane would be good enough. Does the AC option really save enough propane to make it worth it?
It may not save much propane in terms of $$, but it will save some peace and quiet. The propane operation on our water heater is rather noisy, and it takes about 15 minutes to heat up a tank. AC is 100% silent.

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Old 06-02-2015, 11:06 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Maury&Julie View Post
How critical is the surge protector? Is the Escape one high quality? I'll be working on my computer a lot since we're taking our business (online education) on the road. Don't want to fry my precious Mac.
Toss up...

You can purchase a surge protector and plug it into any AC outlet - but that looks cluttered.

You can purchase a 12 power adaptor for the Mac and not worry about surges. About $50 on Amazon. We plan to do just that so as to not have to rely on 110 AC for computer power.

I don't have the Escape surge protector so I can't comment on quality. But you can't beat the convenience of having one built-in.

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Old 06-02-2015, 11:20 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Maury&Julie View Post
How critical is the surge protector? Is the Escape one high quality? I'll be working on my computer a lot since we're taking our business (online education) on the road. Don't want to fry my precious Mac. Thanks for all you who are indulging these questions. I know I could probably root around and find answers in past forums but this is so much more fun. :-)
I asked that question a while back. Here are the answers, starting at post $#29 (And decided it was really a necessary item):
http://www.escapeforum.org/forums/f3...html#post69972
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Old 06-02-2015, 11:49 PM   #32
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The EMS option (Energy Management System) is more than just a surge protector. I've had error codes show about park electrical miswirings and open ground connections. You have to disable the EMS to get the power into the trailer if you decide the risk is worthwhile.
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Old 06-03-2015, 12:24 AM   #33
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Two cents: Get the EMS. The two way water heater is a nice to have, not a must have. You don't need an inverter unless you 1) boondock and 2) have ac appliances you want to run when you do. Dual 6v batteries means you'll have a little more amp hours when you're not hooked up and are using electricity. Not a must have but we like the option. Then again, we went solar. If you're getting solar, it makes sense to have the dual 6's.
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Old 06-03-2015, 10:36 AM   #34
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Hang in there; somewhere on this forum someone posted a thread (this year) about adding on overhead light where they wanted it. They ordered the light and had a wooden mounting block made they used as a template to cut away the overhead liner, then epoxied the block to the fiberglass after running the power wires to the location, and installed the light. ETI runs the wiring up the rear corners underneath the vertical corner pads to the overhead cabinets, so you could tap into those lines.
It was Jim Bennet. Here's a direct link with great pics. http://www.escapeforum.org/forums/f7...ng-4553-2.html
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Old 06-03-2015, 11:38 AM   #35
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It was Jim Bennet. Here's a direct link with great pics. http://www.escapeforum.org/forums/f7...ng-4553-2.html
It is a little more difficult to do in the 17 because the AC is between the fan & the location for the lamp. but it can be done. I added on in mine...
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Old 06-03-2015, 11:57 AM   #36
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It was Jim Bennet. Here's a direct link with great pics. http://www.escapeforum.org/forums/f7...ng-4553-2.html
To give credit where it is due, I did get the idea from RickM.
http://www.escapeforum.org/forums/f8...19-a-1666.html
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Old 06-11-2015, 11:32 AM   #37
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We just put down a deposit on a 21. Now comes the build sheet. We would love advice from any who wants to pass some out. Here are my two questions.

1. What is the #1 thing you got that you found you did not need?

2. What is the #1 thing you didn't get that you wish you had?

Thanks!
This was such a excellent question to ask!
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Old 06-11-2015, 02:01 PM   #38
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1.) Outside shower;
2.) got everything else we needed (but have added other things on our own). When selecting additional options, we thought in terms of, "what can't we do later ourselves?" That allowed for customization to suit our needs as we became more experienced RV-ers and kept us from trying things that were above and beyond our expertise.
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Old 06-12-2015, 09:47 AM   #39
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Generally satisfied, so no one thing stands out in either category...

got but did not need: range vent, bike rack ready, 3 burner stove

did not get but should have: detachable power cord, thermostat upgrade

We like our outside shower for doing dishes (had it put on passenger side).
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Old 06-12-2015, 05:30 PM   #40
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The EMS option (Energy Management System) is more than just a surge protector. I've had error codes show about park electrical miswirings and open ground connections. You have to disable the EMS to get the power into the trailer if you decide the risk is worthwhile.
How did you disable the EMS? We had one place with bad electrical everything with various codes and we assumed we ran on the battery there.
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