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Old 02-16-2011, 05:33 PM   #1
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Dimensions Inverter Question

I have a 2007 Itasca Meridian with a 2000 watt Dimensions Inverter and I beleive it is a "Sine Wave" type which I know nothing about. I have been told that it takes a special meter that plugs into a wall socket to read the volts. Regular digitial meters will not work correctly and always shows lower than normal voltage. I had the unit checked out and it checks out OK. If there is such a guage, where could I purchase one. Any help would be appreciated.
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Old 02-16-2011, 08:20 PM   #2
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If you have the Dimensions "12X20" inverter that my 2008 Meridian has, it is listed by the manufacturer as "Quasi-Sine Wave". Read that as "Phony" or "Modified". The factory spec. sheet states:

"Usage: Any 120 VAC, 60 Hz, product within the inverter’s power rating that does not require a pure sine waveform."



Most Digital meters will not read the actual "Equivilent to RMS" voltage because of the simple algorithm that they use to compute their reading. High-end "True RMS" meters such as Fluke can give you the proper reading. See if you can find a good auto electric shop that has such a meter. They should charge you a minimal fee to just take a reading.

If you want to continue to monitor your AC voltage, you can buy a cheap analog or digital meter first, then compare it's reading to the True RMS meter for future reference. For example, if the True RMS meter is reading 120 volts and your cheap meter reads 105 volts, you will know that the 105 volt reading is "Good" for your system - which is really all you need to know.
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Old 02-17-2011, 12:55 AM   #3
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Ditto.. It's an MSW, not a PSW inverter. You do need to pay attention to what you plug into them because there are things that don't take kindly to this square wave output.
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Old 02-17-2011, 06:09 PM   #4
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Your Sharp microwave won't like it. I tried it and micro runs slow and whines. Everything else works fine including electronics.
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Old 02-18-2011, 01:58 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beabop View Post
Your Sharp microwave won't like it. I tried it and micro runs slow and whines. Everything else works fine including electronics.
Not really..

I've burned out (as in smoked): Electric Blanket, Shiatsu Massager, and a 110VAC florescent light. There are some TV's that don't like it either, and I'm sure a variety of other non-linear supplies in other equipment.
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Old 02-18-2011, 08:24 AM   #6
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There are two kinds of AC volt meters.. Peak reading (Common) and True RMS (Less common, more expensive)

With a true sine wave inverter like my Prosine 2.0 (Xantrex) they should read identically (Well within their tollerance.) so if my Peak reading shows 119 RMS,, I'd expect the expensive True RMS unit to read somewhere from 118 to 120 (yes they are both that good)

If you have an MSW inverter, then the True RMS meter would still show 119, but the Peak reading meter might show something like 107.

Radio Shack used to sell a True RMS.. that's the one I have. I forget what I paid for it.. (Deep discount, discontinued) but the MSRP was like 250
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Old 02-19-2011, 02:15 AM   #7
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i measured my msw 750w vector inverter's voltage with my harbor freight $3 digital vom today. it was 118v with no load and 116v with a 250w load.
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Old 02-19-2011, 02:40 PM   #8
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UPDATE: I ran some tests of various meters, and have posted the results on the following thread.

Voltmeter Readings for Inverters - iRV2 Forums


In light of this, I would change my advice in my first post. I can't seem to edit it however.
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