Do I need an inverter? - Page 6 - Escape Trailer Owners Community

Go Back   Escape Trailer Owners Community > Escape Tech > Escape Systems | Water, Waste, Charging & Propane
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 10-16-2020, 05:41 AM   #101
Site Team
 
cpaharley2008's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Central, Pennsylvania
Trailer: Escape#4, 2019 Escape21 DejaView pulled by 2014 Ram Hemi/8sp
Posts: 22,964
You fellows are fortunate to have camping memories as children. Myself, growing up in a metro area was never exposed to campfire cooking until much later in life......
__________________

__________________
Jim
Sometimes life gets in the way of living......
cpaharley2008 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2020, 12:43 PM   #102
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2020
Location: Tacoma, Washington
Trailer: 2020 Escape 21
Posts: 69
Quote:
Originally Posted by VTMurphy View Post
Looking at a 5.0 which we will use 80% of the time in state/national parks with no hook ups. Planning on having dual batteries and at least one solar panel on the roof. If all we want to do is run the lights and Max fan, plus charge cell phones/ipad using the 12V receptacles or USB, do we need an inverter? Planning on no microwave and do not have any small appliances we care to run.

Also wondering if instead of dual batteries/solar we had a single lithium battery/no solar, would that work just as well for our camping style? Would the best combo be lithium/solar?

Camping trips are usually 3-7 days long.


Thank-You!
We have a new 21C with a built in inverter and the dual battery setup. It's nice to have, but not something that I regard as essential.

We do travel with electronics (laptops, phones, tablets, etc). All of our stuff charges off the DC outlets using a USB Type-C cigarette adapter or via the USB plug. I keep a charger for my ryobi drill tools (carry a drill, lantern, and hand vac that run off their 18v). Again it uses a DC cigarette plug. I'd have gone for an extra DC outlet under the dinette over the inverter if I had it to do over again.

That said, I think that having the inverter while dry camping offers us some flexibility that I don't regret.
__________________

cityofdestiny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2020, 03:31 PM   #103
Senior Member
 
UncleTim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Location: Boulder, Colorado
Trailer: 2020 Escape 5.0TA "Zen"
Posts: 778
Quote:
Originally Posted by kavm View Post
but are otherwise heavy owners and users of electronics - laptops, ipads, iphones, iwatch, electric toothbrushes, waterpik, headlamps, bike lamps, bike radars, bike computers, hiking gps, etc. Interested in WiFi/signal booster type solutions but don't know of any. Don't have a CPAP but who knows what life brings. Definitely expecting a compressor fridge - preferably the not-as-yet-finalized option from ETI, but external alternative if ETI doesn't offer one.
  • Does getting the inverter from ETI make sense? It has firmly been on our option list, but this thread sowed some doubts
  • How many LI batteries should we go for? Like I said, we'd prefer to overorder upfront than upgrade later. But, I don't know if 100Ah is our real need and 200Ah is overspec or if 200 Ah+ is our need and 300/400 Ah is the right "over" order?
Look at your list of battery operated devices. How many of them charge only thru 120v outlets. All my Macs need 120v, however they are now old. Figure out how many need 120v and then how important they are. I still work at websites and content creation, so I need a powerful computer and 120v. I need it for other stuff too. Some of which changes over time. As your batteries age, they hold less of a charge.

Look at your devices and what kind of power you need. Even my battery charges need 120v mostly. We don't use it a lot, but we do use it every trip and most days.
UncleTim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2020, 03:59 PM   #104
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2020
Location: Bellevue, Washington
Trailer: Escape 17B 2021
Posts: 41
Let's look at the DIY inverter addition:
- need to choose and buy it
- need to wire it somewhere under the bench, directly connect to the battery
- need to wire some extra outlet (under the bench, most likely) or somehow wire to the electrical panel
- need to add a quick connect-disconnect switch, ideally not under the bench
- another switch to power all outlets
If not powering all outlets, there would be wires from under the bench outlet to the kitchen counter, microwave opening, or outside the trailer.
Obviously, this is something that could be done later for sure, but if there is any chance of using 120V appliances, I would just go for the inverter option provided by ETI.
Microwave reheating is useful because you won't need to wash a pan afterwards. Coffee capsules machine saves time. Lots of reasons not to forgo the conveniences. Without the inverter, I would need to leave all those appliances at home each time and that's an extra hassle compared to having/using them in the trailer all the time.
dosby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2020, 04:07 PM   #105
Senior Member
 
gbaglo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: North Vancouver, British Columbia
Trailer: 2009 Escape 17B - "Toad". 2020 Toyota Highlander XLE
Posts: 15,279
Quote:
Originally Posted by UncleTim View Post
All my Macs need 120v, however they are now old.

12V charger for my MacBook Air.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Mac Air 12V.jpg (168.7 KB, 3 views)
__________________
What happens to the hole when the cheese is gone?
- Bertolt Brecht
gbaglo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2020, 04:39 PM   #106
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: near Austin, Texas
Trailer: 2005 Casita 17 Deluxe (original owner)
Posts: 410
Quote:
Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
You fellows are fortunate to have camping memories as children. Myself, growing up in a metro area was never exposed to campfire cooking until much later in life......
I wasn't raised in a big metro area but I was definitely a 'city kid' in urban Austin, TX; my father wasn't a hunter or outdoorsman. Scouting was the lucky break for me, fortuitously getting involved with a troop that camped a lot.

That cascaded over the years into Dad getting involved, then Mom and Brother ... the first family Sears tent, then the family pop-up, and eventually my folks becoming serious Airstreamers which took them far and wide during retirement.

Funny how life works sometimes, yes I count myself among the fortunate indeed.

Alas, Scouting doesn't seem to be what it once was in many respects (I'm not sure if for the better or worse, perhaps a bit of both if I'm generous in my appraisal as one long un-involved with the organization). I know that for me it wasn't a place of angst or religion or gender issues, just a place in addition to home and school where I learned a tremendous lot about tolerance of different ideas and people, what it means to be of sound character, and the internal reward of service to others (not to mention the joy of camping and being outdoors, the setting for all of that learning).
__________________
Alan E.
Prospective Escape 5.0TA Owner (deposit submitted 09/09/2020)
Centex is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2020, 05:59 PM   #107
Site Team
 
cpaharley2008's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Central, Pennsylvania
Trailer: Escape#4, 2019 Escape21 DejaView pulled by 2014 Ram Hemi/8sp
Posts: 22,964
Quote:
Originally Posted by gbaglo View Post
12V charger for my MacBook Air.
I have one of those and the newer ones use "USB" as a source....
__________________
Jim
Sometimes life gets in the way of living......
cpaharley2008 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2020, 06:53 PM   #108
Senior Member
 
UncleTim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Location: Boulder, Colorado
Trailer: 2020 Escape 5.0TA "Zen"
Posts: 778
Quote:
Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
I have one of those and the newer ones use "USB" as a source....

Just keep rubbing it in. I told you my stuff is old. Just like me. But I got a new trailer!

I need a new computer! One of those fancy 12v ones.
UncleTim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2020, 09:55 AM   #109
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Oriental, North Carolina
Trailer: 2011 Casita 17
Posts: 20
Thanks for all of the give and take. I am now leaning towards the Dual 6v lead Acid Batteries and the 1500W Inverter. I now need to ask about the Transfer Switch and All Outlet Option. How does that work? Is it used in conjunction with the Battery Quick Disconnect Switch?
Thank you again.
Greatboatz3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2020, 10:07 AM   #110
Senior Member
 
75thRanger's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Sarita, Texas
Trailer: 2019 Escape 21
Posts: 486
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greatboatz3 View Post
Thanks for all of the give and take. I am now leaning towards the Dual 6v lead Acid Batteries and the 1500W Inverter. I now need to ask about the Transfer Switch and All Outlet Option. How does that work? Is it used in conjunction with the Battery Quick Disconnect Switch?
Thank you again.
If you get the all outlets option you don't have to concern yourself with the transfer switch. It knows what to do when it 'sees' shore power and if not there the inverter AC output is used if on.

Make sure your sub panel breakers are in the on position.
__________________
How do you think the 'Unthinkable"?
75thRanger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2020, 10:11 AM   #111
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: near Austin, Texas
Trailer: 2005 Casita 17 Deluxe (original owner)
Posts: 410
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greatboatz3 View Post
... I now need to ask about the Transfer Switch and All Outlet Option. How does that work?
The 'basic' 1500W inverter option offered by ETI provides 110VAC power to only a single outlet which receives power only via that inverter.

The 'All Outlet Option', as the name implies, provides inverter-power to all outlets which can also deliver power from the trailer's 'shore power cord' or a generator plugged-into that cord. When outlets can be powered from all of those sources there is a risk of 'backfeed' between the power sources, a potentially dangerous and undesirable situation. Therefore a "Transfer Switch", which automatically precludes that dangerous 'backfeed' situation, is required and included with the 'All Outlet Option'. The operation of the Transfer Switch is automatic, transparent, and requires no intervention by the trailer occupant. In fact there is no provision for 'operator intervention' on the "(automatic)Transfer Switch"; there is no 'switch lever or knob', hidden or otherwise, that the operator can touch.

The (automatic) Transfer Switch 'works' by detecting what power sources are available and only allowing one of those to feed the outlets circuits at any given moment. It will always default to power from the shore-power cord when that is available, automatically switching to the inverter source when not.

Yes, the the single outlet receiving power only via the 'basic inverter' will safely function when connected to shore power or a generator and the 'basic inverter' is switched 'On'.

Though the 'battery disconnect switch' does relate to all of this, for all practical intents it's only necessary to understand that the battery must be 'connected' for the inverter (among other things) to work when not connected to shore power or a generator. ETI provides a 'battery disconnect switch' whether or not you ask for any of the inverter options - its primary purpose is unrelated to inverter operation.
__________________
Alan E.
Prospective Escape 5.0TA Owner (deposit submitted 09/09/2020)
Centex is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2020, 12:31 PM   #112
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Oriental, North Carolina
Trailer: 2011 Casita 17
Posts: 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Centex View Post
The 'basic' 1500W inverter option offered by ETI provides 110VAC power to only a single outlet which receives power only via that inverter.

The 'All Outlet Option', as the name implies, provides inverter-power to all outlets which can also deliver power from the trailer's 'shore power cord' or a generator plugged-into that cord. When outlets can be powered from all of those sources there is a risk of 'backfeed' between the power sources, a potentially dangerous and undesirable situation. Therefore a "Transfer Switch", which automatically precludes that dangerous 'backfeed' situation, is required and included with the 'All Outlet Option'. The operation of the Transfer Switch is automatic, transparent, and requires no intervention by the trailer occupant. In fact there is no provision for 'operator intervention' on the "(automatic)Transfer Switch"; there is no 'switch lever or knob', hidden or otherwise, that the operator can touch.

The (automatic) Transfer Switch 'works' by detecting what power sources are available and only allowing one of those to feed the outlets circuits at any given moment. It will always default to power from the shore-power cord when that is available, automatically switching to the inverter source when not.

Yes, the the single outlet receiving power only via the 'basic inverter' will safely function when connected to shore power or a generator and the 'basic inverter' is switched 'On'.

Though the 'battery disconnect switch' does relate to all of this, for all practical intents it's only necessary to understand that the battery must be 'connected' for the inverter (among other things) to work when not connected to shore power or a generator. ETI provides a 'battery disconnect switch' whether or not you ask for any of the inverter options - its primary purpose is unrelated to inverter operation.
Alan, Thank you for taking the time to give such a through explanation of the Transfer Switch and the All Outlet option. In for a Penny in for a Pound.
Greatboatz3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2020, 03:59 PM   #113
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2020
Location: Johnsburg, Illinois
Trailer: future 21NE
Posts: 7
This was a great thread, lot's of good info. Thanks all.
Illinois Joe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2020, 04:42 PM   #114
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2020
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Trailer: Plan: 2021 May - E5.0
Posts: 145
Thank you, Alan! Your post was very helpful in understanding this better.

After reading the thread - and being quite equivocal about our choice, we settled back to our original choice before reading this thread and that’s the ETI-inverter with all plugs. With no microwave, we could go without but could also regretting it.
kavm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2020, 10:11 PM   #115
Senior Member
 
Iowa Dave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Benton County, Iowa
Trailer: 2013 Escape 21 Classic Number 6, pulled by 2018 Toyota Highlander
Posts: 5,557
Electricity and outlets

We camped without an electrical hookup last Saturday night. Sunday morning Rita was disappointed to find her iPhone had not charged up over night. She had plugged the charger into a “dead” outlet. It charged up as we drove to our destination on Sunday. There we had an electrical hookup. Ran the AC the first night and the electric heater the next two.
Iowa Dave
__________________
Strike while the iron is hot. Live every day as if it were your last and one day you will be right.
Dave
Iowa Dave is online now   Reply With Quote
Old Yesterday, 12:27 AM   #116
Senior Member
 
John in Santa Cruz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Mid Left Coast, California
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21
Posts: 2,306
I use car chargers for my USB devices, even if I'm on grid power.
__________________
2014 Escape 21 (home away from home)
2002 Ford F250 7.3 Diesel 4x4 (tug)
1993 Mercedes 300CE Cabriolet (daily driver)
2006 Yellow Lab (Maggie... RIP Feb 2019 )
John in Santa Cruz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Yesterday, 06:38 AM   #117
Site Team
 
cpaharley2008's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Central, Pennsylvania
Trailer: Escape#4, 2019 Escape21 DejaView pulled by 2014 Ram Hemi/8sp
Posts: 22,964
Quote:
Originally Posted by John in Santa Cruz View Post
I use car chargers for my USB devices, even if I'm on grid power.
Yes, eliminates the need to carry both kinds....
__________________
Jim
Sometimes life gets in the way of living......
cpaharley2008 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Yesterday, 09:20 AM   #118
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Oriental, North Carolina
Trailer: 2011 Casita 17
Posts: 20
Whatever way anyone decides to go, the knowledge we gained is invaluable. Thank you to all who took the time and energy to contribute. I'm sure many of us weren't aware of all of the decisions that we needed to make when ordering our trailers. These are substantial investments that we would like to get right and it would not be possible your help. Thanks to all!
__________________

Greatboatz3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Escape Trailer Industries or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:21 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.
×