What is the Difference Between an Inverter and a Converter

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What is the difference between an INVERTER and a CONVERTER?

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A converter is basically a battery charger that is connected to the distribution center either as an “all in one” unit or a separate unit in newer rigs. 120-volt power comes into the rig from the shoreline cord either plugged into the campground source, or by generator. That power goes to the distribution center just like your home and powers 120-volt appliances such as the air conditioners, outlets, refrigerator on AC, and other appliances. These all have circuit breakers in the distribution center. One of the circuits sends 120-volt power to the converter which is a battery charger connected to the house batteries.

An inverter is a separate component that is usually placed in an underfloor location and will take 12-volt power from the house batteries and provide 120-volt power to appliances. Smaller inverters can be found in the entertainment center for the TV/DVD player. Larger ones will have 2000 + watts to power the refrigerator on 120-volt power and other appliances. These will also typically replace the converter as they have multi-stage chargers like the Freedom 2000, some from Xantrex, and others.

Hope this helps!

Related video: How To Use An RV Inverter

You might also be interested in:
RV Power Converter Troubleshooting
Essential Guide To 120-Volt Power Converters For RVs

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60 Responses to “What is the Difference Between an Inverter and a Converter”

  1. Steve

    Older people like myself often have trouble reading yellow letters especially against a white background. Please consider this fact when you do your next site update. Thx so much.

  2. Jerry Smith

    Can you run water through the bathroom system without using the water pump?

  3. Elliott Bonn

    What size inverter do I need to run my 2 air conditioners which are 15,000 btu?

  4. Penny Kuzmeskus

    When I look for help in your awesome library for help, most of the info is for more modern units. If you know of groups for vintage campers, could you point me in the right direction. Thanx.

  5. Sid Roach

    can a 1998 Generac 55G be replaced with a Westinghouse WGN5300S 6600/5300 electric start gen set </strong>

  6. Cindy Montopoli

    I have no power when running the generator only when plugged in to house

  7. DrScott Reidenbaugh

    Oops. Sorry. Thot it was a generic repair question, not Converters

  8. DrScott Reidenbaugh

    Aluminum window frames. Some screws are heavily oxidized What screws are best for replacement? Galvanized or aluminum screws

  9. Bruce Bressler

    Does the inverter Aldo work as a converter?

  10. Thomas Kuehnle

    I need a wiring diagram for the 1997 diesel pusher coach. The old records were destroyed when the company was sold to its present owners.