Ladies and Gents,
A while ago, while we were remotely camping in our local desert, a couple that was with us who, has a completely different coach than us, had an issue with their electric blanket while on their inverter for the evening. They asked me if we'd ever encountered any problems running an electric blanket on the inverter. I replied that I've never tried it so, I could not answer them honestly.
They said their control for the blanket, which has a little LCD screen on it said "error" when they tried to use it while on their inverter. Hmmmmmm
So, the very next night, I thought I'd try running ours on our inverter. Guess what, SAME THING!!!!! Our control which also has a little LCD screen popped up with "Error" on it and would not turn on th electric blanket. I thought what the heck here. It's not like I'm running an arc welder, it's cheesy little electric blanket, how much of a problem should that be???
The blanket is around 4-5 years old. So, what ever technology was used to build that thing back then has some sort of disagreement with inverter technology. Our inverter is a Dimensions 2000 watt Inverter/Charger. I'm not certain if it's a MSW or a PSW. I'll have to get into the book for it to see what they say about it. Anyone else have this issue? And or, do you have an explanation as to why these blankets are having a hard time running on inverters?
I'm not planning on doing this as a habit, running the E/B on inverter that is, I'm just curious as to the reason for the "error" code in the control. Thanks
Scott and Karla SDFD RETIRED
2004 Itasca Horizon, 36GD Slate Blue 330 CAT
2011 GMC Sierra 1500 Ext Cab 4x4 Toad 2008 Caliente Red LVL II GL 1800 Goldwing KI60ND
I'm just guessing as to why your electric blanket (and theirs) would have a problem. But I do know that regular household power (and of course, "shore power") is pure sine wave power, and inverters are one of two flavors: either pure sine wave, like house current, or "modified sine wave," which is to say square wave). Many 120 v AC devices are perfectly happy with either, but some are picky, and demand pure sine wave. The heating elements in the blanket would be fine with either, but the controller might be picky.
It happens that making a pure sine wave inverter is substantially more expensive than making a modified sine wave one, so the modified ones get used a lot. It is quite possible that your coaches have modified sine wave inverters. They would work perfectly for hair dryers, lights, small heaters, battery chargers, computers, coffee makers, and many, many other things RVers use.
What modified sine wave won't work for would be, oh, photography studio strobes (some brands), or some televisions, or home entertainment systems. Or, perhaps, the controllers of some electric blankets.
I have a PSW inverter and if nothing else on on and it is in stand-by. I can not get my electric mattess pad to work. The control of the pad heater will not fire the inverter up, however if the TV is on or something else, I can turn on the heater and it will work. Will run after turning off the TV. It just seems that the control circut can not turn the inverter on.
It's the MSW/PSW issue, as others have said. If you have an older electric blanket, try that instead. The new ones are low voltage digital, the old ones are just high voltage with a rheostat temp control.
1993 Coachmen Catalina 31'
Chevy P30, 454 TBI, Hedman Hedders w/ x-pipe and Jones Full Boar mufflers. Same mileage as stock exhaust, but we get there faster!
Looking for a better rig...
Not only will the power from the inverter give you an error code, but on our blanket it burnt out one of the resisters (I think that's what it is called) in the controller. I took it apart and soldered in a new resister and now it works fine. I just have to remember to unplug it anytime we are not connected to shore power (or running the generator).
Holiday Rambler Navigator DP, Hummer, and Honda VT1100C Shadow