Using car batteries as power outlets in an emergency seems to be a viable option sometimes. When there is a power outage, and you don’t have any power source, you can use your car battery to keep important communication.
However, converting these batteries into a power outlet can be a complex process sometimes. You must First of all have to convert the current into AC before using it. Besides, you will need 5 pairs of car batteries – five with +12V and five with -12V. One more thing that you can do to get AC current is using a dynamo.
Although an inverter will help you in this, you can do this without an inverter also. (Explained below)
In this article, I‘ll explain to you how to convert a car battery into a power outlet without inverter.
Why Convert A Car Battery Into A Power Outlet?
There are two very common reasons for which people want to invert their car battery into a power outlet. Firstly, it helps in times of power outage.
There may be situations when you have to run your household items like a radio, computer, cell phone charger, or emergency floodlights off a car battery. Car batteries help as a backup power source.
Secondly, you can also provide power to your RV or a camper van from a car battery as they work as a home on the road. However, the problem here is that the household’s appliances don’t run on batteries. They need the main socket to run. That’s why you need to convert the car battery into a power outlet first.
What Does An Inverter Do?
An Inverter is a device to convert the DC current to AC current and increase the voltage. When attached to a charged battery, the inverter will allow you to power 110/120-volt devices for a limited time.
The car batteries operate on the direct current flowing at 12 volts, whereas most of the household appliances operate at 110-120 volts of alternating current.
So, before using the car battery to power your house alliances, you will need a device to convert the low voltage DC current into an AC current of the correct voltage. This is where a power inverter or shortly an inverter comes into play.
The inverter comes with wires and one or more slotted outlets. Clamp the wires onto the terminals of the car battery and plug the household devices in the outlets.
Can I Convert A Car Battery Into A Power Outlet Without Inverter?
In short, there is no effective way to convert your car battery into a power outlet without an inverter. That’s because the current you have in your car battery is DC.
You must have to convert this current into AC before using it. Transformers also don’t work with DC current. So, you cannot increase the voltage also.
However, you can use the car battery in certain cases. Some devices work on DC current if the voltage is high enough i.e. 120V. Such devices include LED lights with an internal rectifier.
Most devices that come with an internal rectifier will work with dc current. But it is still not that easy. You will need 5 pairs of car batteries – five with +12V and five with -12V. Together it will make a 120V dc current which will be enough to power the lights.
If you need more power, then add more batteries in series and add less if you need less current. Again, sometimes you just need 12 V dc current. You won’t need anything other than some wires in that case. But 99% of the things won’t be run by this.
One more thing that you can do to get AC current is using a dynamo. Generate enough power by adding the batteries in series to drive a powerful 12VDC motor that was attached to an alternator that generated your AC output.
You will have to use a motor controller to make sure that the output frequency is stable. So this is quite a stressful process you will have to go through. Moreover, the overall efficiency will also not be that good.
The best option that exists is buying an inverter. It will just make your work easier. There are many cheap inverters available in the market. If you have a budget limitation, you can start by purchasing one of them. However, make sure the inverter is compatible with 12V DC batteries before purchasing it.
Is It Worth It To Convert A Car Battery Into A Power Outlet Without Inverter?
No, it is not. The reason is that in most cases, you will find an inefficient power source after going through such complexity.
Sometimes, you just put the batteries and the appliances in jeopardy and damage their life. On the other hand, inverters do the work for you with just one tap, and you get a much more efficient power source without hassle.
So, even if not buying an inverter seems to be an inexpensive option, you should not go for this. Rather spend some money on the inverter!
And if you do it without an inverter, apply it only on small devices that run on less power and amperage. It will be easier and efficient then.
What Should I Keep In Mind Before Converting The Batteries Into Power Outlet?
You should keep two things in mind before converting a car battery into a power source. First of all, check the part where you will use this. If you are making this conversion without an inverter, you should use these power outlets with devices that run on less power.
On the other side, you should buy the best inverter you can afford if you are planning to use an inverter. Don’t opt for cheaper options. They can put your devices in danger.
The second thing is how long you expect the power to last. These power sources are for limited times. So if you need power for long hours, this may not be a good option.
If you’ve gone through the article, you already know how to convert a car battery into a power outlet without inverter. But this is not a great option as the power source will be less efficient, and the process is quite complex.
However, if you can’t afford an inverter or can’t find one in an emergency, you can go for this. This is also a great option to run small appliances with less power. So do whatever is best for you!