High Frequency Inverters

So what's the difference between a high-frequency inverter than a low-frequency inverter? Well, essentially, from a physical standpoint, they are smaller and lighter than a low-frequency inverter. So, physically, if you were looking for something in a mobile device that has less weight, that is going to take up less room and it's of a big advantage in a lot of RVs, work trucks, then you're going to want to go with a low-frequency inverter. So what's the major difference and how do they make them lighter and smaller? Well, they don't have the big heavy copper transformer in there that a low-frequency unit would have. They use electronics for switching. Either MOSFETs or IGBTs are used to electronically switch the DC voltage to AC voltage. And again, it's quite a complicated process, but essentially, they use electronics for switching the DC voltage to AC. Normally, on a high-frequency inverter, the surge capacity or surge power of the inverter is about two times that of the continuous output of the inverter. So this means that if the continuous output rating on the inverter is 1,000 watts, the surge is typically going to be 2,000 watts on a high-frequency inverter. That's going to be okay for most loads, running electronic loads, will handle that two times the surge. But often times where we run into a challenge with high-frequency inverters is when we're starting larger loads and motors that start under loads, such as compressors, pumps, that type of thing. So even though you may have an inverter that's rated, let's say, at 4,000 watts surge and we go to start a compressor that's going to be rated at a continuous of 1500 watts, a lot of times because the surge rating on most high-frequency inverters are in the 5 millisecond range--that's not 5 seconds, 5 milliseconds, that's a pretty short time. So, a motor under load may require that surge for a couple of seconds. So, something to consider there. When you're purchasing an inverter, sizing an inverter, ask yourself what type of equipment are you going to be running?