RV Inverter – Should you Leave it ON?

There’ll usually be an inverter-battery solution in your RV, to keep some, most if not all the appliances when not connected to the grid.

Should you switch off the inverter when all the appliances are off? What is the recommended practice?

If you’re wondering what to do the next time you switch off your appliances then read on. In this post, you’ll find guidance on whether or not to switch off your inverter and when it is a good idea to do so.

Can an Inverter Run Continuously?

A good quality inverter can run continuously if installed in a cool, dry, dust-free environment.

You may have to switch it off occasionally to remove dust that may have built up in the inverter or to change the battery bank!

Switch Off or Leave the Inverter on Standby or Running?

You can leave the inverter running provided the battery bank system is sufficiently sized to keep the appliances running without draining the battery bank to dangerous levels for the planned duration.

In the case of an off-grid solar system, this implies that it has been designed to power the appliances in the RV continuously without deeply discharging the battery.

This is extremely useful if you need to prevent the food in the fridge from spoiling.

When it is a Good Idea to Switch Off an Inverter

Switch off the inverter appliances with a high current draw such as a heater or AC connected to it or else you risk draining the battery bank flat.

How to Stop an Inverter from Draining the Battery – Tips that work!

If the inverter does not have an energy-saving mode, it can drain the battery bank flat over several hours or days depending on its capacity (Ah).

As you may know, subjecting the battery bank to deep discharges can damage them.

So, how do you keep the inverter from draining the battery?

1. Do not leave appliances that draw large currents connected to and switched on to avoid the risk of running the battery low.

2. Does your inverter have an energy-saving mode? Is it switched on? If not, switch it off to minimize its power consumption.

The inverter energy saving mode can reduce the no-load current draw of the inverter by as much as 90% (depending on the model)!

You may also be interested in this post: How much power an inverter draws on no load?

Closing Thoughts

There is usually no need to switch off the inverter in the RV provided that the battery bank is adequately sized.

To guard against deeply discharging your batteries, switch off any appliances that have a high current draw or the inverter if it does not have an energy-saving mode.

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