An inverter converts DC to AC, and also changes the voltage. In other words, it is a power adapter. An Inverter has two functions – the first is to convert DC battery or solar panel voltage into mains type AC mains power. Inverters do this by providing an alternating current (AC) voltage rather than the direct current (DC) available from the battery.
By converting 12 volt DC power to 240 volt AC power, inverters can run most 230 volt electronic appliances without a power source and save you having to buy expensive 12 volt appliances when camping or caravanning. The two main technologies are the Pure Sine Wave, which is the best power inverter for use with laptops and the cheaper Modified Sine Wave inverter, which runs basic electronics.
Before buying an inverter, it’s important to know what size appliances you’ll be running off it. Inverters come in a range of sizes from 150 watts through to 6000 watts and yours should be roughly double the size of the draw you’ll be placing on it. This allows the inverter to work within its capacity and lowers the chance of blowing fuses in the event of a power surge.