New

The Best Inverter for Your Car to Power Your Electronics

Sooner or later you’ll need power on the road to use or recharge a device. The best inverter will solve your problems.

More and more people need the best inverter they can get for their car so that they can use and charge their various electronic devices on the road. That’s the thing with modern life these days—we just can’t leave home without our electronic appliances and mobile devices. These things will need power if you’re on the road, and with the right inverter, you can make sure you have all the power they provide.

Quick Look: Our Top Picks

Inverter NameQualityPriceRating
Foval 150W Car Power InverterA+$
BESTEK 300W Power InverterA$
Maxboost 300W Power InverterA$
ENERGIZER 500 Watt Power InverterA$$
UCERAMI Car Inverter 150WA$

Car inverter buying guide

So how exactly do you determine which inverter is the best? To find the right inverter for your needs, you have to take the following factors into account.

Wattage

If your needs are light, then it may be enough to get a 150W inverter for your car. This is the kind of wattage that’s enough to charge maybe a couple of phones or to power a TV or laptop. For 150W, you can usually just connect it through the car’s cigarette lighter socket.

However, you may have greater power needs. Perhaps you want to power a device that uses more watts, or you have more devices to power up. If that’s the case, you can use a 300W or even a 500W inverter. However, you will have to connect this directly to your car battery. Usually, the cigarette lighter socket is only rated for 150W.

You may be confused that an inverter will state its continuous power output and its peak power output. You only have to pay attention to the continuous power wattage.

Make sure that you use a car inverter only if your car is running because when it’s running, the car is charging the battery by consuming fuel. But if the car isn’t running, then you may drain the battery so that it won’t start the car. Another option for this is to have another battery dedicated solely to the inverter.

Connectivity options

Older inverters were limited to offering standard sockets for electronic devices. Some have one socket while others may have two or even three. Today, many inverters offer USB ports as well so you can charge your mobile devices.

Safety features

The very best inverters tend to offer numerous safety features to keep the inverter from being damaged due to accidents. It should have a tough case so that it can handle road bumps. It’s also good if it has other features that protect it against overloads and short circuits. Many inverters have a fan to help reduce its heat.

Some inverters have an automatic shutdown feature that turns itself off when your car battery is getting low. Others just have lights to warn that it’s turned on, so you can turn it off yourself when you shut down your car.

It’s also great if it has a warranty, and if the company honors that warranty. Some inverters have a warranty for a year or even more.

Portability

Inverters aren’t supposed to be huge. Nowadays, they should be light and small enough for you to carry easily. Usually, it should be about 5” long 4” wide and less than 2” thick. These things can be so light that they only weigh 8 oz. or so.

Price

These aren’t really expensive, though this depends on where you buy your inverter. If you get it from a retail shop or the dealership, they may mark up the price so you can end up paying up to $80. However, we made sure that in our recommended list the 150W costs less than $20, the 300W is less than $25, and even the 500W can be bought for less than $40.

Car Inverter Reviews

Inverter NameQualityPriceRating
Foval 150W Car Power InverterA+$
BESTEK 300W Power InverterA$
Maxboost 300W Power InverterA$
ENERGIZER 500 Watt Power InverterA$$
UCERAMI Car Inverter 150WA$

Foval 150W Car Power Inverter DC 12V to 110V AC Converter with 3.1A Dual USB Charger

Foval 150W Car Power Inverter DC 12V to 110V AC Converter with 3.1A Dual USB Charger-5be9fb09719da

Foval is one of the respected brands in this industry, and they make very reliable inverters. This is a well-known bestseller for the 150W category, and the Foval customer support is first rate. If you only have very light power needs, this will more than suffice.

Pros

  • This has 2 USB ports in addition to your standard AC outlet. The dual USB ports can be used simultaneously, and you can also use the AC outlet to power a TV or charge a laptop.
  • This has a 16” cable with a cable lighter plug, so with the cable for your device, you can charge a laptop in the rear seat.
  • This is so small that it’s basically the size of a credit card. It only measures 3.2” by 2.5”, and it is 1.5” thick.
  • It comes in a durable metal case that protects the inner components from bumps in the road and from accidental drops. There’s also a fan that cools the inverter.
  • It has lots of built-in protection. It’s protected against overvoltage, short circuit, low load, overload, overheating, and overcharging. It has a built-in fuse.
  • This has an 18-month warranty.

Cons

  • The 150W may not be enough for your needs, in which case the inverter will just automatically shut down.
  • The fan isn’t quite as silent as you may have hoped.

BUY THIS ONE

BESTEK 300W Power Inverter DC 12V to 110V AC Car Adapter with 4.8A Dual USB Charging Port

BESTEK 300W Power Inverter DC 12V to 110V AC Car Adapter with 4.8A Dual USB Charging Port-5be9fb0ae32a5

This is another well-known brand, and this time you have 300W to work with. While you can connect this through the cigarette lighter socket, it has clamps that you’ll need to connect it into your car battery if you’re going to power more power-hungry appliances.

Pros

  • This time, you have 2 USB ports as well as 2 AC outlets. So you can use this to power a TV and a DVD player, while you also charge your smartphones.
  • The USB ports are “smart,” as it automatically senses the kind of device you have so it can the deliver the fastest charge speed. Its fastest charge speed is 2.4 amps per port.
  • Even though it features an extra AC outlet, it really isn’t all that much bigger. It’s less than 5” long and about 3.4” wide, while the thickness is less than 2”.
  • The cigarette lighter cable is very long at 26”, so it should power many devices even in the rear seat.
  • It comes with a built-in fuse, along with protection from short circuit and overload. It has a low battery alarm, and it can also shut down automatically if the car battery is very low. It also has a cooling fan. If you want to try this by plugging it into the car lighter socket, make sure you have several fuses as a backup.
  • The fan still makes noise (it’s not silent at all), but then it’s quieter than most fans in other inverters.
  • The warranty is for 18 months.

Cons

  • For some people, the fan noise is still too much.
  • It does have a bit of a plastic feel. In fact, you’re warned against leaving this in the sun.
  • Replacing the fuse isn’t easy, as you’ll need to remove the circuit board.

    BUY THIS ONE

Maxboost 300W Power Inverter Dual 110V AC Outlet + Two 2.4A/24W USB Smart Ports Car Charger

Maxboost 300W Power Inverter Dual 110V AC Outlet + Two 2.4A/24W USB Smart Ports Car Charger

Here’s another 300W inverter that should be able to handle your needs. It’s an up-and-coming brand, but it’s making waves.

Pros

  • This has 2 AC outlets as well as 2 USB ports.
  • It only weighs about a pound, and it measures just 4.7” long and 3” wide. It’s just 1.7” thick.
  • The USB ports have a smart chip built in, so it can detect your device and charge it at the fastest speed available.
  • It comes with a universal cigarette light socket plug that’s 2’ long. That should be long enough for even rear-seat passengers.
  • It comes in a metal housing that protects it from road bumps and drops. It also has an integrated fan.
  • The safety features also include protection from under and overvoltage charging, overheating, overloads, overcharging, and short-circuits.

Cons

  • There isn’t any cable to connect it to your battery. That’s why so many people have problems with it, as they go past 150W and they still just plug it into the cigarette lighter socket. You have to buy your own car battery connector.
  • The warranty is for just a year.

    BUY THIS ONE

Energizer 39.97 Deal ends 5-30-17 ENERGIZER 500 Watt Power Inverter +48W USB 12V DC to AC + 4 x 2.4A USB charging ports Total 9.6A

Energizer 39.97 Deal ends 5-30-17 ENERGIZER 500 Watt Power Inverter +48W USB 12V DC to AC + 4 x 2.4A USB charging ports Total 9.6A-5be9fb0c9a5fc

If you’re going to use a power inverter for camping trips and trailers, you will need to make sure that you can deal with the power requirements of your various appliances. This should take care of those needs since it has 500W to offer.

Pros

  • In addition to the 2 AC outlets, this has 4 USB ports with a total of 9.6A (4 x 2.4A). It bills itself as the first to have this 4-USB port feature.
  • It has all the safety features you need, including protection from short circuit, overheating, and overloading.
  • It also has a fuse that you can easily replace.
  • This uses an “ultra-silent thermal fan.” It’s very quiet because it’s not so much a fan as a very effective heat sink. That’s why it doesn’t really make a lot of noise.
  • Along with a cigarette lighter cable plug, you also have an alligator clip you can use to connect this directly to your car battery.
  • This has a built-in mounting post so you can permanently install it in place.
  • The warranty is for 2 years and covers parts and labor.

Cons

  • With 4 USB ports, it’s a bit bigger than normal. It’s about 8” long, 4” wide, and 2” thick.

    BUY THIS ONE

UCERAMI Car Inverter 150W DC 12V to 110V AC Outlet Car Adapter converter with 3.1A Dual Smart USB Charging

UCERAMI Car Inverter 150W DC 12V to 110V AC Outlet Car Adapter converter with 3.1A Dual Smart USB Charging-5be9fb0e0b288

Now we’re back to 150W, and this time, the Ucerami even offers 2 different colors (black or gold). This offers a very well-made inverter that’s great for light needs.

Pros

  • You have a single AC outlet along with 2 USB ports for charging your mobile devices. For light needs, this is more than sufficient. This can also power breast pumps.
  • It’s very compact and lightweight. It measures 3.7” by 2.5”, along with a thickness of 1.5”. Many cars have dashboard compartments that will accommodate this size. It also weighs about 8 oz.
  • It offers the full range of protections, with features that handle low and over-voltage, overload, overcharge, overheating, and short circuit. It also has a LED light that indicates if it is running or it has failed. If you use an appliance that draws more than 150W, it will just stop working.
  • The body is metal, and inside the fan runs at speeds depending on the heat. It can be very fast when it’s heating up, but it will be slow and quiet for light needs.
  • The warranty is for 24 months, and the customer support people are very helpful. They’ll offer a replacement for even the slightest complaint!
  • The cable that plugs it into the car cigarette lighter socket is long enough at 16”.

Cons

Final verdict

Which of these will fill your needs? They’re all great in their own ways, but here are our recommendations. If you only need the 150W model, you can just go ahead and get the Ucerami. It’s very well built, the warranty is very long, and the customer support people will be very glad to replace the inverter if you think there’s something wrong with it. But for light needs, it’s very unlikely to be a problem.

If you aim to use it more heavily, you should just play it safe and get the 500W Energizer. It’s not that big and not that expensive, but it’s the best inverter to get if you’re going camping and you’re not sure how much power you’ll need. This can power TVs, radios, and even coffee machines.

Add Comment

Click here to post a comment