Your Airstream’s power inverter takes power from the travel trailer’s battery and translates it into the type of power that outlets need to properly charge and use devices such as TV, cell phones, laptops, etc. It's used primarily when you're camping away from shore power and relying on batteries to power your Airstream's outlets and appliances.
As of Model Year 2024, all Airstream Travel Trailers (except Bambi, Basecamp, and Trade Wind®) come standard with a 2000W inverter. Previous to Model Year 2024, those models came standard with a 1000W inverter.
Trade Wind comes standard with a 3000W inverter. Bambi and Basecamp do not come standard with inverters.
Here’s everything you need to know to understand and operate your power inverter.
Using your Airstream's power inverter
When should I use my Airstream’s power inverter?
The power inverter should be used when you need to charge devices or run certain higher-voltage appliances from your outlets using battery power, and you do not have access to shore power. You might use your power inverter if you are boondocking or are pull-through camping for a night, for example. When you aren’t using your outlets to power devices, it’s important to turn off the inverter to conserve power. Keep in mind that your outlets will provide power from the battery whether the inverter is turned on or not – the inverter simply supplies the right kind of electrical current for running and charging certain devices and appliances.
What can I plug in to my outlets when using a power inverter?
Your inverter supplies power to specific outlets designated with a blue label on late model Airstreams. This power supply is great for laptop computers, cell phones, a television, Blu-ray player, or other appliances that don't draw a large amount of energy or that don't have a heating element.
Keep in Mind: The inverter cannot handle the power draw from appliances such as microwaves/convection ovens, toasters, coffee pots, electric frying pans, or other items that exceed a maximum power draw of your inverter's capacity. You’ll need to be plugged into shore power if you want to use these appliances.
Always be sure to know the wattage of the device you’re plugging in before you turn the inverter on and remember to turn it off when you’re not using it.
How do I read the power inverter display?
To turn the inverter on, push the power button. If the battery icon is on that means the battery power is being used and will display the battery voltage. If you are plugged into shore power, the shore power icon will be lit.
Push the button to the left of the power button (the button has an icon of a hand with the index finger pointing) to display Shore Power. The screen will then display how many volts are coming into the trailer.
To turn off the power inverter, push and hold the power button until the entire screen lights up, and then let go. The screen will go dark, indicating the inverter has been turned off.
How does my Airstream's power inverter work?
Your Airstream’s pure sine wave inverter takes your 12V DC (Direct Current) battery power and inverts to it 110V/120V AC (Alternating Current) power, which is what is required of “household” appliances.
The inverter sends that A/C current to specific outlets — the ones marked with a blue label. The electricity provided to the inverted outlets is very similar to the power provided by the wall outlets in your home, meaning it flows in a steady, continuous-wave with smooth periodic oscillation.
Is a power inverter a standard feature on Airstream travel trailers?
As of Model Year 2024, a 2000W power inverter is a standard feature on all Airstream travel trailer models except Bambi, Basecamp, and Trade Wind Travel Trailers. Bambi and Basecamp do not come standard with an inverter, while the off-grid capable Trade Wind comes standard with a 3000W inverter.
Can I install a power inverter to my Airstream?
It is possible to add an inverter to your Airstream or upgrade to a higher output model. Before doing so, you need to think through several factors, including exactly how much more capacity you want, whether your current battery array can deliver the added wattage, and whether you need to heavy-up your current wiring. Your Airstream dealer is an excellent resource when considering a new or upgraded inverter.
What is the difference between a Converter and Inverter?
A converter is an electrical device that converts voltage from 110V AC to 12-volt DC in your Airstream. This is automatic, charging your batteries using generator or shore power, and provides power to 12 V DC systems only.
An inverter is an electrical device that converts voltage from 12V DC to 110V AC in your Airstream. It must be turned on to operate, converts stored DC power in the batteries to 110V AC power, and loses some power when converting from DC to AC power.