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celcon 08-03-2011 08:00 PM

I want to hook up an inverter in the truck yo charge my cordless batteries .has anyone done it and does it work

WarnerConstInc. 08-03-2011 08:07 PM

Why wouldn't it?

GettingBy 08-03-2011 08:13 PM

Look for the input current on your cordless battery charger nameplate. This is the current your small inverter must supply.

Your charger probably takes 120 vac at 1A or so, so the inverter will pull about 10A from your car battery.

Tinstaafl 08-03-2011 08:16 PM

Charging batteries is no challenge at all for an inverter; you can run corded power tools on them as long as they carry enough power. One caveat: some chargers may not work with the modified sine wave output of your typical cheap inverter.

More expensive units produce a pretty pure sine wave that's good for just about any type of equipment.

celcon 08-03-2011 08:17 PM

Will any inverter work i checked them out and there are different types -syn wave i have heard that the batteries need a clean power generator to charge properly. I would like to charge multiple batteries at one time

GettingBy 08-03-2011 08:42 PM

The charger manufs can advise you on the square wave, modified sine wave or pure sine wave decision.

The cheapest inverters put out a square wave.

If you draw more than 10A you may not be able to use the cigarette lighter connector so you'd need clips onto the battery or run a special hookup directly to the battery. The inverter needs to withstand the "load dump transient" that vehicle power can produce when the engine is running.

VinylHanger 08-03-2011 08:45 PM

23 Attachment(s)
Mine would work for the standard Dewalt or Ryobi chargers, but wouldn't work for the musical Makita chargers. Not sure why, but it sure sucked when I got to the job and my batteries were dead. I just had the small cheapy plug in Y-type inverter with two plugs.

tburritt 08-03-2011 08:49 PM

I have 3 set ups in my van/truck.. 110V from home or job power, if not available the generator on the back step/bumper can be used or a large inventor can be turned on running off the 2 truck batteries. The fourth would be to get a belt driven alternator/generator off the motor. In past experiences I have found that charging batteries off anything other than 110V land power or from the grid does shorten the batteries life cycle. The reason (told from an electrical engineer) is that the voltage fluctuates on all sources but more dramatically on power you generate. The generator is the worst because the generator motor revs up and down depending on load which changes voltage. Plug in a light and you will see the difference. An inventor looses voltage as your batteries in you truck drain down. The fluctuation in voltage affects batteries being charged worse than any other tool or function because the batteries charge to a particular voltage or current in the batteries memory and normal chargers cant regulate that voltage change in conjunction with the batteries voltage required to bring to full charge. I have found that after charging Dewalt batteries for instance they loose memory charge rather quickly but if you zap them with a quick current from a say wire feed welder you can snap the level in memory and bring them back to life a few times. Be very careful doing that! Sorry for being long winded but I didn't know how to say it any other way but I have ruined a lot of batteries charging them by generator and inventors in the past and that gets expensive quickly. My two cents worth.
Troy B.

Tinstaafl 08-03-2011 09:06 PM


Originally Posted by tburritt (Post 1255996)
An inventor looses voltage as your batteries in you truck drain down.

That used to be true, and may still be for really cheap inverters, but for the most part these days they will simply shut down if the input voltage falls below the level needed to maintain adequate output.

The memory effect of ni-cads is becoming less of an issue these days as we move to NMh and LI batteries. But even so, shortened battery life can be acceptable if the alternative is loss of production or no production at all.

We don't always have the option of plugging into the grid at some jobsites. :thumbsup:

TBFGhost 08-04-2011 05:58 PM

I just use a little guy from HF to charge batteries in the truck...

It charges my 14.4 Makita, 10.8 volt Makita and 6 Volt Paslode batteries just fine.

Tom Struble 08-04-2011 06:03 PM

don't most manufactures offer a car charger option?

GettingBy 08-04-2011 07:17 PM


Originally Posted by TBFGhost (Post 1256495)
It charges my 14.4 Makita, 10.8 volt Makita and 6 Volt Paslode batteries just fine.

But not all at once, right? The 10.8 v Makita may take 80 w for 15 minutes to charge it.

celcon 08-04-2011 07:59 PM

Thanks guys

Kingstud 08-07-2011 01:01 AM

I installed a xantrex 600w true sine wave I got a great deal on amazon.
put the inverter behind my seat w/ 00 cable. I'd like to setup a land line rv type plug when I'm on the job.
this guy has good info

GettingBy 08-07-2011 10:11 AM

This works on paper and might work in the real world.

You have a battery of voltage V and amp-hours A, so the battery watt-hours are VxA. If you want to charge this battery in a quarter hour you need 4 x V x A.

So a 12 V, 2 A-h, battery charged in 15 minutes takes a minimum of 4 x 12 x 2 = 96 w for 15 minutes.

Inner10 08-07-2011 10:58 PM

In short yes a cheap POS inverter will work fine. I have 3 I bought from Canadian Tire and they work just dandy...I run my 20V laptop charger, 24V Hilti, 14V Hilti, 18V Ridgid, 18V Dewalt. I have never had more than 2 chargers going at once.

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