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163 of 168 people found the following review helpful
on January 26, 2009
Bought this off Amazon a month or two ago. I was looking for an inexpensive pure sine wave inverter to replace my Duracell (Xantrex) modified sine wave inverter. I was expecting to have issues from the get go (due to the cheap price!) but this inverter is working out quite nicely. I have it hooked up to 4 Trojan T-105 batteries which is charged up with an 85 watt Kyocera solar panel and Xantrex C35 charge controller.

Being pure sine wave, I can run anything now that my old modified sine couldn't. No more annoying buzzing sounds from CFL's or TV's. certain appliances that wouldn't power up on the old inverter now work flawlessly. Some things I run on the Sunforce: Samsung 22" LCD TV, CFL's of all sizes, Playstation 2, battery chargers, laptops, electric cooler.

I haven't tripped the over current protection yet at all, not even when using items that typically surge, such as a large power drill.

No fan issues like the other review mentioned.. in fact I haven't heard it come on at all yet; then again it's winter time here in Missouri so I assume it truly is thermal controlled.

The remote keychain that was provided with the unit works great. Since I'm doing the electrical work on our new cabin, I can turn off and on when working on the electrical. Then turn it off when we leave for the week.

The only issue I've had so far is once I came back on the weekend and the inverter turned itself back on sometime during the week. This normally wouldn't be a big issue except we're limited on battery capacity and can be a nuisance if kept happening. This has only happened the one time so no biggie.

The LCD readout on the front of the inverter is a nice feature, more expensive inverters don't have this by default, though I rarely look at it.

I would like to determine how much power the inverter uses when it's powered on and in idle mode. The documentation doesn't mention this anywhere and would expect that would be a major selling point. (or, disadvantage if it's too much of a power draw). I don't have an amp meter to test what it is, if you find out please post a review.

The only other downsides is:

1) this inverter has no permanent mounting brackets. only rubber feet on the bottom. luckily the thick DC cabling keeps it well secured within the battery box.

2) the DC hookups are HAND TIGHTEN only. This can be an issue if you, like me, use the proper gauge wiring. in my case I'm using 6 gauge, which is actually borderline of being too small but the batteries are close by. I ended up using pliers to tighten the hand lugs. With thicker wiring, I imagine this would be a huge pain.

inexpensive! I noticed the price just went up though :(
LCD readout on front panel
Keychain remote, I haven't seen any other inverters include this with the inverter itself

no mounting brackets? I'm sure you could finagle some aluminum straps around it, instead.
hand tightened DC connections
no mention of idle power usage.
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144 of 151 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon May 12, 2010
I have several 1000W inverters in my service trucks and thought the idea of a RF remote would be nice so I stepped away from my usual brand (Xantrex) Xantrex Technologies 806-1000 Prosine 1,000-Watt Inverter and their newer, more value conscious true sine inverter product line which is within $20 of this sunforce unit but lacks the features. This time I bought the sunforce.

First off, testing finished inverter installations, I use a 1050W load (it's a heat gun with 1000W heater and 50w blower). True, this is MORE than 1000W but all inverters have some surge capacity so it's never been a problem before. The sunforce unit's efficiency is within 1% of xantrex, requiring 114-116 AMPS at 12VDC to operate the 1050W load, however the sunforce will shutdown within 3 seconds with an output overload condition, while the xantrex units will drain the battery first.

I stepped the load down to 900W and things were fine, so I'm really going to overlook their slightly over-rated specifications on the inverter because my loads are in the 300-400W range and need clean power. Besides, the value proposition with sunforce's feature set is still there.

Another pro/con to consider is that the Xantrex units are metal cased with mounting holes, while these are plastic - that may lead you to some innovative mounting solutions, but it's not a big deal.

Neither Xantrex nor Sunforce has developed a "everything easy to read display" - my -806 model xantrex prosine comes close with a remote mountable on/off plate w/ lcd that shows volts, amps, and watts as a bargraph simultaneously. But the Xantrex LCD display is smaller than some digital watches and can't be read across the truck cab, which forces me to remote mount it. Sunforce uses BIG digits that are red LED, but it cycles through output voltage, amps, etc by pushing a button - it will only stay on one value for 1 second. The problem is unless you are pressing the button it defaults to AC volts, where battery voltage might be more useful

Sunforce did something really clever. Inverters of this power level are not easy to wire in (4' of #4 wire is about all you get to the battery before wire losses cut into your power conversion). The knobb-ish looking thing in the upper right of the product photo is a rubber cover for a high current 12VDC socket. You did all that wiring to hook this up, might as well get a cig lighter socket that shares the same big wires.

A good source of wiring is available on amazon and I've reviewed them - Cobra CPI-A4000BC AC Power Inverter AWG Cables although if you really need 1000W keep a battery within 4 feet - a second battery like the Optima Batteries 8052-161 D31M BlueTop Dual Purpose Battery optima deep cycle is a good setup as it can be mounted close to the inverter and charged from the vehicle alternator. Be sure to use a battery isolator so that your inverter can not drain the vehicles' starting battery.

If your use involves ALOT of runtime at 1000W a parallel combination of 2 D31 batteries will run longer without running the engine. For near constant use, use a 124 Amp alternator and you will need to run wires back to the vehicle power system and run the engine to provide power.

The Xantrex series will give you much more surge power - to 1500 W if needed for 30 seconds. Sunforce has created a clever product that comes with 3 remote on/off switches in the package. All inverters have some feature you may want - here it was the remote, some Xantrax models offer AC cutover to battery when an outside power source disappears. You do get alot in this model for a good price. My unit gets daily use and has not had a problem. Best advice is shop around - the old models that were $600-700 have come down to the $200-300 range. Oversize the unit for your use because all AC loads have startup surges, especially lighting loads and motors. I generally double the inverter size.

No matter what brand you end up buying, a TRUE Sinewave inverter like this will give you utility quality power. After nothing but bad experiences with pseudo-sinewave (there are lots of names for it, but NOT real sinewave) units frying expensive equipment over time. Those units are only good for incandescent lights, and even those burn out faster!
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205 of 218 people found the following review helpful
on January 31, 2010
I bought the inverter to use in an RV to power lights, TV/DVD, and other light AC loads. The price on this unit is very attractive so I bought it and checked it out before installing. I tested it under light and maximum loads and even hooked it up to an oscilloscope to verify if it was really a sine wave output. The last thing I did was bring it in the house to power the TV, stereo, computer, DVD, and VHS player simultaneously. (This is still well under 1000W.)


(1) Powers all loads I've thrown at it without a problem (except see #4# including electronics, 1000W electric heater, fluorescent and incandescent lights, and an electric drill.
#2# Has a real sine wave output.
#3# Causes considerable interference to AM radio when used to power the stereo system, but absolutely no interference on the TV or FM radio or anything else.
Strangely, the TV guide function on the cable box stopped operating, but I can't be sure if the inverter caused this.

But the really bad part:

#4# It has unexplained shutdowns. This usually happens under light loading conditions. The unit shuts down and displays an error code of OST #overload# or 529 #inverter defective#. The unit was not overloaded #not even close) any of the times this has happened. And when it happens, you have to turn it off and wait several hours to turn it back on. I think it has to lose its memory of the error before it will operate again.

I will probably be contacting the manufacturer regarding this problem. The unit is no good to me if it doesn't work reliably.
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99 of 107 people found the following review helpful
on March 25, 2012
First off. My battery backup flagged this product as "Building Wire Fault".
The product showed 119volts at 58hz. My lights flickered like I was in the early 1900s.
After checking all my indoor wiring and power strips, only this inverter remained.
Dismantling this product, the side "Heat-sinks" proved to be plastic. Worthless props.
I discovered the connections from the AC plugs had the "hot" connection soldered into the
ACN (neutral) and the neutral wire soldered into the ACL (load).
I soldered the wires into the proper positions, and after re-installing, still received
the "Building Wire Fault". I took the product apart again, and after discussion with another electrical technician, we concluded this product had no ground included on the neutral side
of the AC. I soldered a wire to the neutral side, and attached a ring terminal to the ground
screw in the back of the device. Reassembled, and re-installed, flipped the switch, and have
a functioning product. It now reads a steady 121 volts at 60.3hz steady. My lights don't flicker.
My power supply shows a properly grounded device. I am writing this review on the power from the
inverter. Bottom Line. VERY dangerous product. Not compliant for USA standards, and I don't feel
the average person on the street wants to have this "Shock Hazard" in their home. Just Saying....
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
on May 22, 2010
I'm an electrical engineer and purchased this inverter to have additional backup capabilities, as I already have two marine batteries connected to a backup sump pump and wanted to run minimal equipment during power outages. Power outages aren't common, but when it happens, we typically experience about an hour long duration.

This is a decent quality, budget inverter. I do agree with other reviewers regarding the power cable connection, but it's not bad as one can use the cable lug along with the thumb nut to tighten. Some may see the need for hex nuts and use of a wrench, but this may actually be a hazard as posts are very close together (unless battery connection is made last). Regarding the fan, it is thermostatically controlled. It only comes on about when supplying over 500W continuous load. During standby, it draws about 1 amp (12 Watts). Testing the inverter in the garage in 40 degF temp, I could not get the fan to kick on even with 750W continuous load.

Included remote switch is very convenient. More than the actual remote, I use the hard wired switch that is connected to the inverter via supplied control cable. It would have been better to include a GFCI receptacle; I have a plug in GFCI outlet for this added protection. Soft start is very convenient and can start my DeLonghi 50-pint dehumidifier that draws 900 W continuous.

I would highly recommend this inverter. It's cheap, it would supply power to light loads within the inverter rating. Just purchase #4 AWG minimum size cable. I found purchasing a automotive jumper cable to be cheaper and installing lugs in lieu of purchasing stiff THHN type cable at home supply store. I plan to use the left over of the jumper cable for connection to vehicle battery when I go camping.
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41 of 45 people found the following review helpful
on September 7, 2009
I've had the Sunforce 1000w inverter for a couple of weeks now. Like a kid with a new toy, I had to try it on a couple things.

1. Bass guitar amp - First thing I noticed was the static noise was a lot louder than when it was plugged into grid power. I guess the power isn't as clean as it should be for a pure sine wave inverter.

2. Rice cooker - It drew around 600 watts according to my Kill-A-Watt. The inverter cooling fan was turning on and off very frequently during cooking. When the rice cooker was done and went to "keep warm" mode, it was only drawing 40 watts but the cooling fan still turns on and off for a while until I unplugged it. I can see the fan turn on for any draw over 500 watts, but 40 watts???

Pros - It works. Cheap price. Cool remote power unit. Power information display panel.

Cons - Like other reviews, no way to mount it. Fan turns on at really low power consumption. The heatsinks are plastic and serves no real purpose. You would think if they used real heatsinks, it would've provided better passive cooling to minimize cooling fan operations. The big thumb screws for the battery power leads doesn't tighten good enough, better to replace them with nuts and washers from a hardware store.

I give it a 3 1/2 star.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
on July 23, 2009
Product documentation was lacking this info, so called Sunforce and was told this inverter is 90% efficient, and has 2.5 Amp self consumption (standby.) 2.5 Amp seems like a bit much, but it's the price you pay for a budget inverter.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on June 28, 2014
They advertise this as a 1000 watt inverter but in the instructions it tells you that the 2 receptacles can only handle 500 watts each for a total of 1000 watts. Would not run my 900 watt microwave in my RV or a hair dryer on low heat, high fan.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on May 20, 2014
Bought the inverter to run a 650 watt motor. Kept getting an OST error when the motor tried to start. Called manufacturer and they confirmed that you only get 500 watts per outlet.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on August 5, 2014
Seems like a nice inverter and all that, but the description is misleading. This is not a 1000w inverter. It is a pair of 500w inverters. If you want to run anything over 500w, you are out of luck.
UPDATE: Quite often even 300w will trip this thing. It's a piece of crap and I'm switching back to my cheapo $70 inverter. Revising my rating to one star.
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