How fast would it take to use up charge in 12 volt battery in my scamp charging lap t - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-15-2014, 03:38 PM   #15
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[QUOTE=John Linck;441900 There is no need to run your engine.

Exactly right. With comments about how little it takes to charge a iPad or phone you would only have to run the engine a couple minutes and not every time you charged something. Seems cheaper and simpler than a solar setup, but we all do things different, and we do what works for our own situation. At campgrounds with no electric hookups I've seen people charging things in the bathrooms that had an outlet, and one time at a campground I recharged a cordless drill at an outlet a soda machine was plugged into.
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Old 02-15-2014, 03:41 PM   #16
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The inverter route is easy, but there is a penalty due to inverter inefficiency, as much as 10% maybe. That's why I suggested the direct 12 volt to laptop route. On the other hand with an inverter you can plug in a power strip and charge all your devices at once, a good trade off. Plus, with an inverter you have 120 volts for other gadgets you may use (printer, TV, etc.)

Don't spend $750 for solar. I just added a 100 watt panel/controller to my Scamp for less than $250.00. You should be able to find a portable unit for about $300.00. Just watch out for folks with sticky fingers.
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Old 02-15-2014, 03:52 PM   #17
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Well as I said I was running off car but my iPad tajes four hours to recharge so not a minimal timeframe. I am now looking at buying a solar 16 watt portable charger for 130-150$. I don't need to run tv or AC or even coffee pot as my main constant is the IT device for my writing. Charging my iPhone with a very good lighter charger was okay - an hour to two maybe. Charging all three devices could run into 6 or more hours.
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Old 02-15-2014, 03:55 PM   #18
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Ps as for charging in bathrooms of campgrounds, most of time plan to be in free or 5$ national forests without bathrooms. Again a few minutes of recharge with car will do me no good. I like portable panel idea!
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Old 02-15-2014, 04:08 PM   #19
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[QUOTE=mary and bob;441905][QUOTE=John Linck;441900 There is no need to run your engine.

Exactly right. With comments about how little it takes to charge a iPad or phone you would only have to run the engine a couple minutes and not every time you charged something..[/QUOTE]

Wish that was true Bob but I have found it normally takes my iPhone about an hour plugged in to fully recharge once it run right down and my iPad way longer - never actually timed it but my guess is at least a few hours.
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Old 02-15-2014, 04:09 PM   #20
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How well a small solar panel will do on keeping up with your electrical usage depends (obviously) on your usage. I am a heavy user - my laptop alone (a power hungry 17" MacBookPlus) can eat 5 -7 amp hours per day if I'm processing lots of photos & keeping up my web pages. Combined with everything else, I use between 15 and 20 amp hours daily, which my 95 watt panel & a pair of 6V, 232 amp hr batteries will keep up when the sun is shining. A couple of cloudy days, and I have to cut back.

I do try to charge the laptop using the RAV4 on the days that I drive.
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Old 02-15-2014, 06:36 PM   #21
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We have plenty of things to recharge. Even when stationary we usually spend part of the day driving about, ecploring our new neighborhood. During that interval we recharge things from the car. We use the 12 volt outlets to recharge phones and the like using USB ports in the 12 volt outlets. We sometimes put a 150 watt cigarette lighter inverter in to charge larger items.

We also have three AC outlets with USB ports and 3 12 volt outlets in the trailer. Our 80 watt solar panel takes care of the batteries when off grid. What's really nice is that most of the electrical devices are really low power and last a long time on a charge.
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Old 02-15-2014, 07:02 PM   #22
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A portable battery pack will give you USB, 12V and a 120V inverter built in. They can be charged by plugging in to 120, 12V while driving or by solar. So a single appropriately sized solar panel and a 12V charging unit for your laptop will be all you need. Well under your $$ limit.

Battery power for your trailer is another thing. There are enough selfcontained battery operated LEDs and flashlights on the market that can suit that need.
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Old 02-15-2014, 07:13 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roy in TO View Post
A portable battery pack will give you USB, 12V and a 120V inverter built in. They can be charged by plugging in to 120, 12V while driving or by solar. So a single appropriately sized solar panel and a 12V charging unit for your laptop will be all you need. Well under your $$ limit.

Battery power for your trailer is another thing. There are enough selfcontained battery operated LEDs and flashlights on the market that can suit that need.
Roy, this sounds like a neat gadget. Amazon dot come has 209,047 results for "portable battery pack" -- any particular suggestions/is there one you recommend for camping applications?
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Old 02-15-2014, 08:30 PM   #24
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[QUOTE=Carol H;441914]
Quote:
Originally Posted by mary and bob View Post

Wish that was true Bob but I have found it normally takes my iPhone about an hour plugged in to fully recharge once it run right down and my iPad way longer - never actually timed it but my guess is at least a few hours.
What I meant Carol is that the amount your car battery was discharged with engine off charging a phone or iPad, it would only take a few minutes engine run time to bring it back to full charge. Reading more of the OP's explanation of type of camping she will do, her idea of a solar panel sounds good. My type camping I probably don't need it, although a few rare times it would be nice, but not worth the investment. A funny aside here; when I worked on lease trucks we frequently encountered what was called a "battery test". That was when we discovered the lights on of a truck that had been parked for hours, or even the previous day, and we would see if the batteries had enough left to start the engine. Most of the time they would start. Ever do this with your car, lights draw more than a phone charger. I'll admit, I've left lights on for a couple hours and still had battery enough to start the vehicle.
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Old 02-15-2014, 09:19 PM   #25
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[QUOTE=mary and bob;441951]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carol H View Post

What I meant Carol is that the amount your car battery was discharged with engine off charging a phone or iPad, it would only take a few minutes engine run time to bring it back to full charge. .
Agree it probable wouldn't draw it down much, although I know that on one my vehicles the 12v sockets for gadget charging doesn't work unless the car is running though.
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Old 02-15-2014, 09:31 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by jen b View Post
Roy, this sounds like a neat gadget. Amazon dot come has 209,047 results for "portable battery pack" -- any particular suggestions/is there one you recommend for camping applications?
No Jen.
Everybodies needs are different. I typically buy them on sale at Canadian tire, which is a regular thing, never pay more than 1/2 price and consider them disposable. i.e. it is cheaper to replace the unit than the battery inside. Here is their current line up:
Power Packs | Canadian Tire
My current one is 3-4 years old and includes a compressor, car booster and light. Paid less than $100 for it and use it to check and top up all the tires on most trips.

Here is an example of a name brand basic unit to give you an idea.
Duracell Powerpack 600 | Portable Generator | Duracell

My suggestion is to see what is available locally or online and buy on sale. 50-60% off should be a good guidline. Battery size and type is the main feature to keep an eye on.
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Old 02-15-2014, 09:38 PM   #27
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Jen,
Here is a shorter list on Amazon
Amazon.com: portable battery pack
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Old 02-15-2014, 09:45 PM   #28
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I use solar lights too and cost of 12$ lites pays for half price lites in Africa. Charge has lasted a year at the rate I use them.
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