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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So I recently bought a vehicle to do shorter 3-5 day car-camping type trips, and knowing the variable weather and that certain parks don't allow fires on occasion, I'm looking to add a small microwave for heating up single-portion meals, canned foods, hot water, etc.

I haven't found any 12 volt DC microwaves, so I assume I'll need to use a standard indoor microwave and something like a large hard-wired inverter to power it. Has anyone else hooked-up anything like this, or is there another option I am missing?

Thanks for any/all help on this!
 

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Lots of newer cars now have AC power outlets, are you sure there isn't one somewhere?

You can buy an adapter for $20-30 that plugs into your cigarette lighter and has a 3 prong on the other end.

Don't use it while the car is not running though and check the power rating. Many of them are around 300w, probably not enough for a microwave.
 

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This is a rabbit hole.

For occasional use I would go propane.

For more than occasional I would go propane or plan a weekend to be in that rabbit hole on RV, Trucking, Van Life sites.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Lots of newer cars now have AC power outlets, are you sure there isn't one somewhere?

You can buy an adapter for $20-30 that plugs into your cigarette lighter and has a 3 prong on the other end.

Don't use it while the car is not running though.
Not in this one. My last car had one, but it wasn't rated nearly high enough to run even a small microwave.

Yeah, I figured even if I found a way to make this work I'd have to run the vehicle during use. It would be relatively short periods anyway, so not a big deal by my way of looking at it.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
In theory, you would need a pretty large inverter due to the power consumption.
Way cheaper to get a camp stove. Or several camp stoves.

A quick search says 2500 watt inverter for a 1200 watt microwave.
Yikes. I didn't know it would have to be that much larger. Is it the momentary surge on startup thing, like electric motors? Even at home, we only run a 1000 watt microwave, and I think they make even smaller ones for dorm rooms and such.

EDIT: Here's a 700 watt model for $41 at Walmart dot com:
https://www.walmart.com/ip/Proctor-Silex-0-7-Cu-ft-Black-Digital-Microwave-Oven/464841392

Something like this is probably all I need. Not doing any turkeys or 7 course meals.

.
 

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Small Honda or equivalent generator?

Adjuster beat me to it!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Wrap in foil, place on top of motor near exhaust manifold and run engine for five minutes. DING! Dinners ready.
Somewhere I have an old cookbook with a section on cooking on your engine block (might have been in an older Boy Scout handbook...?).
 

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Somewhere I have an old cookbook with a section on cooking on your engine block (might have been in an older Boy Scout handbook...?).
There are systems to bolt to the block that become a water heater.
 
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Well I can't help with that idea of yours, I hope someone else can. I would suggest if it's just three to five days to get a super cooler on steroids, also some sort of an insolation blanket to retain coolness to line your trunk.

Then make a lot of cold cut sandwichs, potato salad, block cheese, Cheetos, apples, bananas, grapes, maybe some sort of desert like hostess cupcakes or a few candy bars. Maybe an extra bag of ice or two. If you aren't gonna be in one spot for like five days, plan ahead for one of those am/pm joints to get a few items and maybe more ice. I assume you would be bringing some type of alcohol after the driving is done. No campfire, no problem just bring a bottle of DRAMBUIE along.

Have a great time, just remember
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Discussion Starter #20
You're going to need an inverter in the 2500- 3000 watt range to run a microwave oven; how simply or how elaborately you choose to wire it is up to you; I would spend the extra for a pure sign wave unit
Even for a smaller 700 watt unit? Is there a "rule" for sizing stuff like this?
Any additional info is appreciated!
 
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