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Old 07-27-2015, 10:43 AM   #41
Senior Member
Name: Bob
Trailer: Escape 5.0 TA
W. Mass
Posts: 440
Byron, have yet to have a tv in a trailer. In the example we had an 18' Hybrid, with tenting on 2 sides.

May well take more heat then your 13' on a cold night, or the OP's for that matter.
No LED lighting back then and when it's freezing out we spend more time indoors.

I've encountered many folks that run down their battery before the weekend is over. Getting 4 or 5 nights out of a single battery as you do is exceptional, that's about what we could do in warmer weather.

Here's what I had measured once upon a time.
Item Ahr
LP + Radio 0.18
Refrigerator 0.32
Bath Fan low 1.49
Night Lights 0.03
Range Light 0.62
Ceiling Light (single Bulb) 1.37
Converter 0.20
Water Pump 4.52
Furnace 2.82
Bob & Deb
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Old 07-27-2015, 10:43 AM   #42
Senior Member
Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
North Carolina
Posts: 5,155
How to save 30% on Solar power for your RV:

Solar Investment Tax Credit | Miscellaneous Pages (Tax Credit, Privacy Policy, etc.)



Of course claiming an FBGT as a residence might be a gray area so YMMV! Talk to your tax advisor and do not assume anything from this posting. See page four of this IRS publication.

This is something I hope to take advantage of next year!

PS... we have already seen, in the above posts, a wide range of power consumption, and as it follows, solar charging requirements. This underscores the need to getting the system properly sized to your needs, usage patterns, even where and how often you set up camp.
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Old 07-27-2015, 04:11 PM   #43
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rdickens's Avatar
Name: Ray
Trailer: 2017 Scamp 16 Deluxe
Posts: 692

Other than picking the size of the panel, the actual connections are really very simple.

I used 2 wire nuts to make the connections from the solar panel to the controller (you may need to remove a little more isolation from the red and black panel wires in order to twist the copper together before twisting on the wire nut).

Then, I used 2 wing nuts to attach the ring connectors on the battery end of the controller to the threaded battery posts.

The instructions in the controller are fairly clear.

Note that all panel's rated wattage are for optimum directional conditions in full sun. I think that the crystalline panels may do a little better in suboptimal conditions than amorphous panels that require larger size panels. Someone else may comment on that.

The 35 watt panel will provide slightly less than 3 amps in full sun. That is slightly more than the 2 amp low setting of my home car charger.

With my limited current usage, all I really needed was the .7 amps provided by my 12 watt panel.

As Floyd said, a group 27 battery will last a while on its own. If you are even trickle charging, you will extend that even farther. If you are trying to run microwave ovens and flat screen TVS, you would probably need multiple batteries and multiple larger wattage panels.

As I said, YMMV. 😉

Good luck! ☺


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Old 07-27-2015, 08:47 PM   #44
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Name: Ray
Trailer: 2017 Scamp 16 Deluxe
Posts: 692
How long will battery last...

BTW - The Northern Tool 35 watt crystalline panel should still fit on our gravel shield.
(My wife and I both thought that we might "get by" with the 12 watt panel and it was more "Scamp13 size". It did do the job for us during our 8 days of dry camping ... perhaps just barely?)

After looking at the 35 watt panel specs, it generates just over 2 amps.

If I was powering a furnace, I would probably choose the 35 watt panel. I don't often dry camp and I think that about $150 is all I would really want to spend for maintaining the battery with our minimal current usage. (Quieter, lighter, and much cheaper than a $600 to $1000 generator. And, no need to carry gasoline or go out and buy more gas. 😉 )

With the 54" bed and the weight restriction (1500 lbs) of our tow vehicle, I did not have a furnace installed. I wanted the full height door under the sink (the furnace would have taken half of that precious storage space.)

We rarely camp in super cold weather, so we just use a small space heater and/or our warm sleeping bags.

Again .... Good luck with whatever you decide is right for your situation! ☺

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battery, scamp

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