Are Inverters Worth It? What Does An Inverter Do? How Do Inverters Work In Nigeria?
This post talks about the types Of Inverters In Nigeria, things to consider before buying them, the best inverter battery brand in Nigeria and lots more.
A power inverter is a conversion and supplying device which takes in Direct Current (DC) power stored in batteries (or solar) and converts it into Alternating Current (AC).
Alternating Current is the type that can be used to run home appliances and various electronic equipment.
Before we start discussing the types of Inverters in Nigeria, let us clear the air on how inverters work, and why they were created in the first place.
First of all, we have two different kinds of electrical currents.
- Direct current (DC)
- Alternating current (AC)
A direct current is a type of electrical current in which electrons flow in only one direction from the negative electrode to the positive electrode. Direct current can be pictured by a straight and continuous current over time.
Direct Current (DC) is found in batteries and solar panels. Their charges are usually 12 Volts, 24 Volts or 48 Volts.
An alternating current is another type of electrical current in which electrons flow in both opposite directions in a periodic cycle. It can be represented as a sine-wave current over time.
Alternating Current (AC) is the main electric current that all common household appliances use. Their charges are usually 230 Volts and are the type of current supplied by electricity distribution companies (or NEPA as commonly known in Nigeria).
Now that you know this, you should realize why the current from your batteries is different from the one provided by electricity companies.
Since Most Home Appliances Use Alternating Current, How Can We Convert Direct Current To Alternating Current?
You can’t connect most home appliances to a DC source, because most of them are compatible with only AC power.
So how can we use Solar power and batteries in our homes?
That’s where an INVERTER comes into play!
To solve the compatibility problem between DC and AC, engineers created a device that converts Alternating Current (AC) to Direct Current (DC) and vice versa.
That device is called an Inverter.
An Inverter makes it possible for us to use direct current to power our home appliances. It simply converts the DC in solar panels to AC that our appliances can use.
The Types of Inverters For Home Use In Nigeria And How To Choose One In 2022
Based on output characteristics, we have 3 types of Inverters in Nigeria.
- Pure Sine Wave Inverter
- Modified Sine Wave Inverter
- Square Wave Inverter
1. Pure Sine Wave Inverters
A pure sine wave inverter does two main things:
- Converts Direct Current (DC) to Alternating Current (AC)
- Increases DC voltage (usually 12 Volts, 24 Volts or 48 Volts) to 230 Volts
A pure sine wave inverter will deliver the highest quantity of electricity, similar to that provided by NEPA in Nigeria.
It has a pure voltage of 230 Volts and a stable frequency of 50/60Hz. Pure sine wave inverters will run your appliances smoothly as if they are connected to your community transformer.
Most of the appliances we use in our homes can only be powered with a pure sine wave inverter. Some of them include:
- LED Televisions
- Standing fans
- Some fluorescent light bulbs
- Audio and video equipment, satellite systems
- Bread makers
- Light dimmers and many more.
The devices above can only run on a pure sine wave inverter. If you use other types (Modified Sine Wave or Square Wave), the devices may get damaged, malfunction or stop functioning.
Pure Sine Wave Inverters are the most expensive. They are made from high-quality raw materials that produce steady, continuous and smooth electricity.
Most high-power demanding appliances in the Nigerian market are designed for pure sine wave inverters.
2. Modified Sine Wave Inverters
While pure sine wave inverters are made from high-quality electronic components, modified sine wave inverters are made from cheap electronics.
This explains why most Modified Sine Wave Inverters are 50% cheaper than Pure Sine Wave Inverters.
A modified sine wave inverter will work with some appliances, but the overall power efficiency will be reduced. This leads to power and energy wastage.
With modified sine waves, home appliances that have moving parts, e.g refrigerators, pumps and fans will use more power from your inverter battery.
This is because most of the power in a modified sine wave inverter has a frequency higher than the normal 60Hz. As a result of this, some home appliances can’t use without risking some damage.
When compared to a pure sine wave inverter, a modified sine wave inverter will cause some malfunctioning and irregularities. It will cause:
- Most fluorescent bulbs to give less brightness
- Some fluorescent bulbs to buzz and make annoying noises
- Electric timers and digital clocks to run faster or not work at all
- Most bread makers and light dimmers to not work at all
- Almost all speed drills to not work at all
- Overheating, malfunction and damage in ceiling fans, standing fans, refrigerators and microwaves. Some laptops also fall in this category (check your laptop electrical requirements)
If you don’t need to use the appliances listed above, then a modified sine wave inverter is best for you. This is because:
- Modified sine wave inverters are generally cheaper
- They are very cost-effective
- They are the type of Inverters most commonly sold in the Nigerian market.
3. Square Wave Inverters
Square Wave Inverters are the rarest and cheapest. This type of inverter can be used with simple home appliances in Nigeria.
Simple tools that have universal motors can be powered with a Square Wave Inverter. Aside from this, nothing else can be run.
Although you may still find them in the Nigerian market, Square Wave Inverters are no longer manufactured.
Why You Should Choose A Pure Sine Wave Inverter For Home Use In Nigeria
If you are ready to purchase an inverter for home use in Nigeria, then you should consider buying a pure sine wave if you have the budget. This is because they:
- Are energy-efficient. There is no wastage of power
- Are the best for optimal home performance
- Will run your device smoothly as if they are from your community transformer (or NEPA as commonly called)
- Power up your home appliances while maintaining their health and performance
- Are compatible with all home appliances. They can power your fans, refrigerators and microwaves without any risk of damage or malfunctioning
- Are designed for appliances with high power requirements like Audio and video equipment, satellite systems, bread makers and light dimmers
Things To Consider When Buying Inverters For Home Use In Nigeria
With the general economic situation, purchasing an inverter for home use in Nigeria requires a huge amount of money.
If it’s for commercial purposes, one can be sure that he/she will make a profit in the long run. But for people buying Inverters for home use, they buy it knowing that they won’t make money with it.
Inverters will be useful when there is a power outage in the community. Inverters are home gadgets that make life easier and more comfortable.
As a result of these reasons, it is important to think twice before buying that desired Inverter. Here are some things to take note of when buying an inverter for home use in Nigeria.
1. Recommendation From Previous Users
Before buying an inverter for home use in Nigeria in 2022, you should speak with your family members, friends, relatives, co-workers that also use inverters in their homes.
Ask about the brand they use, and how the user experience was for them.
This will go a long way to help. You should remember to make enquiries about the price, lifespan, precautions, installation process and of course, compatibility with their home appliances.
2. Track Record Of The Inverter Brand In Nigeria
Everyone living inside and outside Nigeria knows about the unstable power supply.
As a result of this, many inverter manufacturing companies have seen Nigeria as a viable market for their products.
While this led to a lot of good things, it has also attracted the bad and the ugly. Some inverter companies target Nigeria because of its vulnerability and poor justice system.
That is why it’s important to do good research before patronizing an Inverter company in Nigeria.
Spending close to ₦30,000 on a background check is not expensive compared to the loss you will incur if you buy a substandard Inverter.
3. Warranty Duration (And The Terms And Conditions Attached)
Warranty is the assurance that the inverter company will give you on the quality of their product. A warranty also includes a promise of repair or replacement if the inverter is damaged (during the warranty period).
Note that a warranty stands only if the fault is from the inverter company, or if the damage occurs because of a mistake in the manufacturing process.
If the fault occurs as a result of carelessness, failure to comply with guidelines or a mistake on the buyer’s part, the warranty would no longer be valid.
4. Technical Support
An Inverter is a complex and sophisticated product of electrical technology. As a result, you will most certainly need some help while installing and using the product.
Because of this reason, you must buy your home inverter from an inverter manufacturer that offers great technical support.
5. Dealership And Source Of Patronage
One thing is to identify the inverter brand you want to buy. Another thing is to buy from a reliable source in Nigeria.
You most certainly won’t be able to buy directly from the inverter company. You have to buy from distributors and dealers of that particular Inverter.
Buying from random sellers may not assure you of the warranty. Also, random dealers might have an inferior product in their store and not the genuine version.
So here is a tip. Ensure you contact the company manufacturing the inverter brand you wish to buy. They will give you information about their distributors and dealers near your home.
6. Customer Care Support
Note that technical support and customer care are different things. Although they are similar, most people use them interchangeably.
Technical support involves assistance to help with a particular problem. It usually requires the physical presence of technology experts.
Customer care service can be done over the telephone, social media or the company’s website. It can be in the form of questions and answers, complaints and does not necessarily require physical presence.
Either way, you should buy your home Inverter from a company that offers prompt customer service, should the need ever arise.
7. Charging System
Not all inverters that are sold in the Nigerian market have in-built charging systems.
If your desired Inverter comes with a charger, then good for you. If it doesn’t, you will have to purchase an inverter charger separately. This will cause you to spend more money.
8. Automatic Function
A great feature included in recently manufactured Inverters is automation.
These features allow you to power your home appliances safely with or without your presence.
You just have to press the inverter before leaving your house.
Additionally, some power inverters in Nigeria have a LED or LCD screen. This screen displays information about the current settings and status of your home inverter.
Some of the information includes the inverter battery level, amount of load connected to the inverter and the amount of electricity being consumed by your home appliances within a period.
It’s always good to check for these features, as they increase the functionality of your home inverter.
9. Battery Protection
Not all Inverter batteries are strong and durable. That’s why it’s always advisable to buy STARPLUS BATTERIES. Starplus batteries are made from high-quality chemical materials, unlike most of the others available in the Nigerian market.
Because not all inverter batteries are durable, you have to protect them to prolong their lifespan. That way, they won’t discharge or charge irregularly.
Some inverters have in-built features that prevent problems like this. But some don’t.
That’s why it’s necessary to buy an inverter with a feature like this so that you will know when to disconnect some home appliances or even shut down the inverter.
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Another thing you need to check is the technology feature.
Over the years, the world has advanced. Inverters too are not left behind.
As a result, some features that caused certain problems have been replaced with newer innovations. Here are some examples.
- A PWM-based MOSFET technology feature that allows the power voltage to be regulated; thereby boosting performance
- Inverter battery protection protects the battery from overloading and prolongs the lifespan
- A silicon-controlled rectifier technology assists in frequent charging and little power consumption
- An additional feature prevent system overload and allows for auto-reset
- A short circuit protection shields the power system from damages caused by excessive and destructive currents
Yes. Price. Money. It always comes down to money.
No matter how careful or patient you are, you still won’t be able to buy that high-quality home Inverter if you can’t afford it.
Purchasing a home inverter that has all technological features is important, but your budget is still what determines what you will get at the end of the day.
However, it’s still advisable to purchase a home Inverter that is worth the price. That way, you will get to enjoy your home while knowing that you spent your money in a very wise way.
Is There Any Home Equipment That Cannot Be Run On An Inverter?
Not really. You should be able to power all your home appliances with a good inverter.
There are various sizes and capacities of Starplus inverter batteries to run various high power appliances in your house.
They can power many devices like:
- Air conditioners
- Washing Machines
- Mixer Grinders
- Pressing Irons
- Water Motor Pumps and many more.
You should note that each needs batteries as per their power consumption needs.
However, you can’t connect all the appliances available in your house at the same time. Use them individually at a time.
How Much Time Does An Inverter Take To Respond During Power Cuts And Interchange?
Generally, all good inverters require 16.6 milliseconds to respond during power cuts and transfer electricity from one mode to another mode. This time gap is enough to give you an uninterrupted power supply in a house.
Types Of Inverter Batteries In The Nigerian Market And How To Choose One
An inverter battery is a vital part of an inverter. The performance and duration of a home inverter largely depend on its battery.
There are many Inverter battery brands in Nigeria. It’s important to know the types of Inverters batteries that are available for home use in Nigeria and how to choose one.
- Tubular Battery
- Flat Plate Battery
- Gel Battery
Tubular Inverter Battery
Tubular batteries are generally large lead-acid batteries. They are bigger when compared to a flat plate battery.
Tubular batteries are the best inverter batteries because they are very suitable for places with long power cuts.
Tubular batteries are well designed and they have a longer service duration for your home appliances in Nigeria. They have more durability when compared to a flat plate battery, and they usually have longer warranty periods.
Tubular batteries are designed in different container sizes. You should select from available sizes depending on the space you have in your house.
Tubular batteries can be classified into Short tubular batteries (ST/TJ) and Tall tubular batteries (TT).
Short Tubular Inverter Battery
A short tubular inverter battery has a small height. However, it has a very wide width. It is wider than a tall tubular battery.
Short tubular inverter batteries are very easy to keep and move around.
Tall Tubular Inverter Battery
A tall tubular inverter battery is larger in height than a short tubular battery. It’s also taller than a flat plate battery, but its width is very small.
Talk tubular inverter batteries are known for their longer power backup time. However, it can only be used in homes that have much available space.
Advantages Of Buying A Tubular Inverter Battery In Nigeria
- Tubular Inverter batteries are highly efficient
- They are very reliable
- They have an extended operational life
- Tubular batteries need little maintenance
- They are suitable for high power-demanding appliances and frequent power cuts
Disadvantages Of Buying A Tubular Inverter Battery In Nigeria
- Tubular batteries have a very complex design
- They are also very expensive (just like all good things)
Flat Plate Inverter Battery
Flat Plate Batteries are also lead-acid batteries. They are more suited for places with low duration but less frequent power cuts.
These batteries are more affordable when compared to tubular inverter batteries. However, they have a shorter lifespan.
This type of inverter battery requires less time to charge since it has a higher charging rate. However, It has a shorter warranty time than tubular batteries.
It has a lesser lifespan, weight, efficiency and price.
Gel Inverter Battery
Gel Inverter batteries are maintenance-free lead-acid batteries. They are regulated by valves.
Gel Inverter batteries are very big and versatile. They deposit very little fumes into the air and they can be used in homes that have little ventilation.
They are referred to as “Maintenance-free Inverter Batteries” because they don’t need to be refilled with water. You won’t need to monitor their water levels.
Instead, they have one-way open valves. This feature allows the internal gasses to recombine and form water, and the cycle goes on. They are completely sealed, unlike tubular inverter batteries that require a water refill.
Gel Inverter batteries are generally more expensive than tubular batteries.
Advantages Of Buying A Gel Inverter Battery In Nigeria
- Less toxic gas is released. They are very eco-friendly
- Very suitable for deep cycle applications
- They are maintenance-free
- There is no risk of acid spillage when using a gel Inverter battery in Nigeria
- They don’t corrode easily. As a result of this, they are compatible with sensitive home appliances
- Gel batteries are generally rugged and resistant to vibrations
- They are the safest Inverter batteries. No risk of acid burns.
Disadvantages Of Buying A Gel Inverter Battery In Nigeria
- They are very expensive
- Gel batteries charge at low voltages. While this may be a good thing, it’s also bad and ugly. There is a high risk of overcharging
- Special chargers and regulators are needed to prevent overcharging
- If a Gel battery becomes overcharged, the water can’t be refilled
- In case of high temperature than the value specified, the Gel battery components will become hard and shrink away from the plates
Want To Read More Battery Related Contents? You should visit our blog to see other interesting content related to car batteries, inverters and inverter batteries.
Which One Should You Buy Among The Three Types?
You should buy a Tubular Inverter Battery because it has the intermediate features of the two other options. Also, Tubular batteries have the longest average lifespan of 7 to 8 years.
Each type of Inverter battery has its pros and cons.
In simple terms, Flat plate Inverter batteries are cost-effective and good for homes with low power requirements. Their lifespan is short, being an average of 3 years. However, they charge very fast.
Tubular Inverter batteries are costly, but they are worth the price. They are good for homes with high power requirements. They also last longer than flat plate batteries, with an average lifespan of 7 to 8 years. But they are not maintenance-free.
Gel Inverter batteries also serve the purpose of tubular batteries. But they are better, more convenient to use and also more expensive. However, they require special regulators to prevent damage from high voltages. They have an average lifespan of 4 to 5 years.
The Best Tubular Inverter Battery Brand In Nigeria – Starplus Batteries
Since you now know that tubular inverter batteries are the best for your home, you might start thinking of which brand to buy.
To be honest, not all Nigerian brands are good. Battery weight is one of the factors that determine how long a tubular inverter battery will last.
Because of this, some inferior companies add extra electrolytes to add to the weight of the battery, thereby fooling the buyers.
Some also use inferior chemicals to manufacture their batteries after which they mask them with attractive designs, thereby attracting and fooling the buyers too.
That’s why it’s good to buy from a very reliable and reputable company. And that’s where StarPlus Batteries come into play.
“STARPLUS” is a brand under MMNL, which is Nigeria’s best manufacturing company and supplier of both automotive and tubular batteries.
STAR PLUS offers long-lasting inverter tubular batteries. Starplus tubular inverter batteries come in different capacities ranging from 130AH to 240AH.
These inverter batteries not only last long but are incredibly powerful too. The warranty ranges from 36 (18+18) months to 60 (36+24) months.
Starplus Batteries Contact Address
CORPORATE OFFICE: 85, Ikorodu Road, Lagos, Nigeria.
FACTORY OFFICE: Km 20, Ikorodu Sagamu Road, Sagamu, Ogun State.
Contact us through our website: Starplus Contact Page.
To purchase a battery or to become a distributor in your state, you can call us now: +2347069694488