Solar Idea - Need Some Help - Fiberglass RV

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Old 05-25-2018, 05:16 AM   #1
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Name: Huck
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Solar Idea - Need Some Help

I currently have a 100 w flex panel on roof of my Parkliner. It is wired with 2 Y connectors. I use this to drop 2 wires down through the closet floor, and I have a portable 100 w panel I plug in as needed. That is plenty to take care of power for lights, fans, pump, etc.

I just bought a van so I have plenty of roof space on it. My idea is to put about 1 KW of panels on the roof of the van, install some batteries in the van, and an inverter. Then I could connect the shore power cable on the trailer into the inverter. That would allow me to run the microwave, refrigerator, and air conditioner (mainly during daylight hours).

By doing it this way, I could drive the van anywhere I needed power and plug an extension cord in. Lose power at home, plug into the van. Need to run power tools in the back lot - plug in the van. The biggest cost is the batteries.

I watched a video yesterday where he did something somewhat similar. He has panels on his trailer and on his tow, and he has a controller for the van and a controller for the tow, all connected to the batteries in the trailer.

I like the idea of 2 separate systems - 1 for trailer and 1 for van.

I have no idea how to design this once I get past the panels, controller, and inverter. Anyone willing to take a stab at the design? I know I need kill switches, fuses, etc, but don't have the background to spec them.


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Old 05-25-2018, 09:22 AM   #2
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I don’t have the expertise either, but I love the concept! Following...

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Old 05-25-2018, 11:25 AM   #3
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Check out this video. He may have something pretty similar. Also search YouTube for RV solar or RV solar specs.

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Old 05-25-2018, 12:51 PM   #4
Name: Pete
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Besides adding solar panels, you need to consider the batteries needed to avail yourself of the power you want to consume. A single battery probably won't support your listed uses.
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Old 05-25-2018, 01:19 PM   #5
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That's the video I mentioned in OP. He uses the batteries in his trailer with 2 charge controllers. I want a separate system for van.
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Old 05-25-2018, 05:55 PM   #6
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I am no expert, but it seems to be a fair rule of thumb to have 1 amp hour of battery for every watt of solar, or vice versa. Making efficient use of 1000W of panels would imply 1000Ahr of batts. That is what, maybe 600 lbs of batteries in the van? Just thinking. I might be off.

Edit-- I warched the video, and was surprised that he only ha 3 batts. But I see what he is doing... he is using much of the power as the day progresses, and is keeping the batts well topped off. Which is good for battery health. Interesting.
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Old 05-25-2018, 07:00 PM   #7
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Name: Gene
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RV Sues does this and it’s a neat setup

Go to her site and click on her solar setup.
What’s cool and my cuppa’ tea | rvsue and her canine crew
This is her latest blog. She has solar on her tow vehicle with a big battery bank. She can park her Casita in the shade and the toad in the sun.
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Old 05-26-2018, 03:10 AM   #8
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It's not the batteries or panels I need help with. It's everything else.

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