Power options in the back of a Van

Discussion in 'Builders' Talk' started by Brent Brereton, Oct 9, 2019.

  1. Brent Brereton

    Brent Brereton New Member


    I'm 23 years old and completely self taught. I've been a self-employed joiner for 12 months now and I've decided to upgrade from a car to a Van.
    So I've just got my new VW transporter and I'm going to make a work trolley in the back that I can wheel out.

    I wanted some advice because I work in different locations alot and I wanted to add power to my work station so I could have a mitre saw set up and and maybe some battery chargers.
    I thought about a generator but are there any other options? Is there anything similar to a car battery I could get?

    Thanks in advance
  2. KIAB

    KIAB Super Member

    Ideally your looking at Pure Sine Wave inverters,would run anything,but a large output one 3Kw plus is very expensive,there are cheaper quasi inverters around, but some electrical items with electronics,need pure sine wave to work correctly.
    And you would also need split charge relay & additional battery for inverter,if not then you wouldn't be able to start van dual to flat battery,see diagram below.

    A ordinary petrol/diesel generator the better option I think.

    Last edited: Oct 9, 2019
  3. wiggy

    wiggy Screwfix Select

    If you want to run a mitre saw full time you will want a genny.
    For charging batteries you can get 12v chargers or as kiab says get an inverter.
    You could stick a couple of leisure batteries under the passenger seat and a solar panel on the roof.
    Welcome to the VW world.......
    KIAB likes this.
  4. KIAB

    KIAB Super Member

    We are so backward here compared to the USA, a lot of trade vans out have onboard or undermount generators,using vechicle for fuel supply or pto, available as a option.

    Got mate in Colorado,his van has onboard compressor/generator,(multi power system as it's called), puts us to shame.
  5. Jimbo

    Jimbo Screwfix Select

    The Rivian electric trucks will include mains AC outlets for this purpose.
    KIAB likes this.
  6. sospan

    sospan Screwfix Select

    Your looking at the problem the wrong way - what is it you actually need to run at 110 / 240 and how frequent are you going to use them ?

    Most cordless tools run for a very long time on batteries and you can get virtually every tool in a cordless format - table saw, mitre saw etc. Most manufacturers have the option for a cigarette lighter charger so if needs be you can charge whilst running the engine.

    Money spent on a wiring up the van can be put into the tools and going cordless will offer you more flexibility in taking your tools onto sites or peoples homes where running a generator or plugging in is going to be a problem.
    rogerk101 and HandyDoug like this.

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