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Power converter for RV

These are the 5 Best RV Power Converters in 2023

Updated April 11, 2023

In this modern day and age, we continue using more and more electronic devices, even in our RVs. Some appliances are essential to your everyday life in an RV, while some are situational, but they still require power.

All these accessories require electrical power, which they get from the electrical system of your RV. As we all know, different appliances work on different levels of voltages, and that’s why you need a device that will help with the proper power regulation.

What is an RV converter?

An RV converter is a device that converts 120-volt alternating current (AC) electricity into 12-volt direct current (DC) electricity. It takes the AC power from the electrical hookup or a generator and converts it to DC power that can be used to charge the RV’s battery and power DC appliances.

Without a working power converter, our life in an RV would be very different. In fact, our 12V power system would be pretty useless without a working power converter.

How does an RV Converter work?

When you plug your RV into any standard electrical source, the converter reduces 120V AC power to 12V DC power. The DC power is then distributed to the RV’s electrical system, powering the DC appliances and charging the battery. In newer RVs, converters supply power to all of the 12-volt appliances and accessories in your rig.

If your RV isn’t connected to shore power or another electrical source, your RV battery will supply the power to all 12-volt appliances and accessories.

If you’re connected to shore power or some other electrical source, a converter recharges your batteries, which preserves the lifespan of your batteries.

A converter works as a standard feature or an easy plug and play. It is necessary if you plan on utilizing your DC appliances or accessories. Remember, your batteries will still drain even if you are plugged into standard shore power.

A converter keeps your batteries charged, but not all converters work the same.

Types of RV Converters

There are two main types of RV power converters: single-stage converters and multi-stage converters. Among the less used types of RV power converters are high output converters, deck mount converters, and distribution panel converters. In this article, we’ll focus on single-stage converters and multi-stage converters.

  • Single-stage converters

Single-stage converters are the simplest type of RV power converter. They take the 120V AC power from a shore power connection or a generator and convert it directly to 12V DC power to charge the RV’s battery and appliances. Single-stage converters are really simple to use and they are affordable, but they don’t regulate the charge rate of the battery, which can lead to overcharging or undercharging, potentially damaging the battery.

  • Multi-stage converters

More advanced and efficient than single-stage converters, multi-stage converters are designed to provide a three-stage charging process that ensures the battery is charged correctly and efficiently.

Those three stages are:

  • Bulk charging: In this stage, the converter delivers a high amperage charge to quickly recharge the battery.
  • Absorption charging: In this stage, the converter delivers a lower amperage charge to bring the battery to a full charge and prevent overcharging.
  • Float charging: In this stage, the converter delivers a very low amperage charge to maintain the battery’s full charge without overcharging it.

Multi-stage converters are more expensive than single-stage converters, but they are more efficient, reliable, and overall better for the battery’s health. They can also be programmed to work with different types of batteries, such as lead-acid or lithium-ion batteries.

Things to consider when buying an RV Converter

  • Output size
  • Converter type
  • Product efficiency
  • Battery power
  • Your appliances
  • Operating time
  • Safety protocols

What are the benefits of using an RV Converter?

Using an RV converter leads to a number of benefits, including:

  1. Efficient use of power – An RV converter is designed to convert 120V AC power to 12V DC power. This enables the RV’s battery to power the DC appliances and devices without the need for an external power source, which can save energy and reduce the cost of electricity.
  2. Battery charging – An RV converter has a built-in charger that charges the RV’s battery when the RV is connected to shore power or a generator. This ensures that the battery is fully charged and ready to power the RV’s DC appliances and devices when shore power or generator power isn’t available.
  3. Protection – An RV converter is designed with a range of safety features, such as over-current protection and reverse polarity protection, which helps protect the RV’s electrical system from damage caused by power surges or other electrical issues.

5 Best RV Power Converters

Now that we’ve summarized what you need to know about RV power converters, let’s review the 5 Best RV power converters on the market.

Progressive Dynamics PD9260CV Inteli-Power 9200 Series Converter/Charger with Charge Wizard - 60 Amp

A favorite choice among RV owners, this Progressive Dynamics converter offers protected DC power to all lighting circuits and 12-volt appliances in your RV. This 60-amp converter will charge your RV’s battery in no time. It also comes with a Charge Wizard, which automatically adjusts the charging rate to the condition of your battery.

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03/13/2024 10:37 pm GMT
  • Built-in Charge Wizard constantly monitors voltage status and automatically adjusts the charging rate
  • Reverse battery protection protects the converter from damage
  • High and low voltage protection
  • The cooling fan automatically monitors the converter temperature at all times
  • Quiet during sleeping hours
PowerMax PM4 55A 110V AC to 12V DC 55 Amp Power Converter with Built-in 4 Stage Smart Battery Charger

A compact and efficient converter that delivers 55 Amps of DC power. With a built-in smart charging system, it automatically adjusts the charging voltage and current. Easy to install and easy to carry, it is one of the most popular options on the market. PowerMax converter offers superior performance and protection against reverse polarity, overload, and overheating. 

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03/13/2024 11:11 pm GMT
  • 55 Amp DC Power Output
  • Built-in 4 stage Smart charger
  • Quiet during sleeping hours
  • Made out of quality materials, extra durable
  • Easy to carry and install
  • Temperature-controlled fan cooling system
WFCO Arterra WF-9875-AD-CB Converter/Charger - Deckmount - 75 Amp DC Output (20 Amp AC Power Cord), Gray

Offering clean and reliable power for your rig’s electronic devices, the WFCO converter can even provide clean DC power without filtering from a battery. It is really quiet, which is great for sleeping hours. Easy to install, it offers a 3-stage battery charging process. That prolongs the lifespan of your battery and protects it from overloading. With a 75 Amp DC output, it is more than capable of powering all the electronic devices in your RV. 

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04/05/2024 01:35 am GMT
  • 75 Amp of clean and reliable DC power
  • Deadly quiet
  • 3-stage battery charging process prolongs the lifespan of your battery
  • Super easy to install
  • Built-in protection against overload or short-circuit situations
RecPro RV Converter | Multiple Capacities | RV Power Converter | RV Battery Charger | 120VAC to 12VDC | 13V to 16.5V Operating Range (35-Amp)

Available in capacities from 35 to 100 Amps, RecPro is a brand that is solely focused on producing RV devices. RecPro converter simultaneously recharges the RV’s battery and provides power to all the connected devices. A silent running fan ensures the temperature doesn’t rise above recommended. It features LED lights which indicate the current status of the converter. With a 3-stage battery charging process, it protects the lifespan of the battery. RecPro converter also has built-in protection against overload, reverse polarity, and overheating.

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04/05/2024 01:40 am GMT
  • Works with both lead and lithium batteries
  • LED lights indicate the status of the converter
  • Simultaneously charges your RV’s battery while providing power to your electronic devices
  • Available in different capacities, from 35 to 100 Amps
  • The 3-stage charging battery process protects the lifespan of the battery
  • Extra quiet cooling fan
Iota Engineering (DLS30 30 Amp Power Converter/Battery Charger

Ideal for smaller campers, the IOTA converter provides an output of 30 Amps. Small and light, it is easy to install and can fit anywhere. Cost effective (almost half the price of other converters) and reliable, it comes with a 2-year warranty. It protects your equipment and ensures an exceptionally clean DC output.

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04/05/2024 02:20 am GMT
  • Lightweight and small fits anywhere
  • Provides exceptionally clean DC power
  • The best price on the market
  • Great to use if you have more than one battery
  • You can directly charge lead-acid batteries

What Causes an RV Converter to Go Bad?

There are several reasons why an RV converter can go bad. Here are some of the most common causes:

  • Circuit board or breakers
  • Resistors or diodes
  • Fuse
  • Power Source

In our previous article, we’ve explained in depth how to find the reason for your RV converter not working properly. If your converter stops working, your appliances won’t work either: your lights, your vents and fans, your refrigerator, and onboard batteries, they all draw power through your converter.

When you learn how an RV’s electrical system works, you will be able to deal with RV converter issues by yourself. If you want to find out what causes an RV Converter to go bad, read more about it here.

Final thoughts

If you want to properly charge your batteries, think about investing in a good RV converter. Not only will it preserve the lifespan of your battery, but it will serve as a protector against power surges, overloads, and other hazards. Converters usually last from 5 to 10 years and they are a great investment that will save you money in the long run. Apply what you’ve learned here and we have no doubt you’ll find the best RV converter for yourself. If you have any questions, our team at will gladly answer them.