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Old 11-26-2021, 09:08 AM   #1
Terrol
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Solar power

How many watts of solar panels needed , and how many batteries needed and what lnverter needed to run rv dry camping
 
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Old 11-26-2021, 10:22 AM   #2
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Terrol,

It really depends on what devices you want to run and for how long. Search the forum and you will find a lot on the subject.

If you don't have a residential reefer, don't watch TV, don't have an electric coffee maker, don't plan on using the microwave and camp in temperate climates you can get by for a few days with just a couple of decent sized batteries.

By building an electric budget you will get a good idea of your needs.

Even with a lot of solar, a genny is always handy for those cloudy days.
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Old 11-26-2021, 03:39 PM   #3
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Terrol, as Zack said, it depends on your rig. We have the Super Solar system. It has 1200 watts of solar and 540 ah of lithium batteries, two 50 amp solar charge controllers and a 3000 watt inverter. We do not have a residential refrigerator, so that helps us significantly. We can run AC for a few hours. But, 1200 watts is not capable of keeping up with AC. A good first step would be to add a good battery monitor like the Victron 712 to track your power. And, since there will be cloudy days, don’t forget to add a generator to cover those days. Best of luck. On sunny days, we can run everything but the AC including furnace and stay above 90% charge at the end of a sunny day.
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Old 11-26-2021, 08:54 PM   #4
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Terrol

Thanks
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Old 11-30-2021, 08:36 PM   #5
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We have 1,200 watts solar, 600ah Lithium and 3000w pure sine inverter. Run everything (Including residential fridge) except AC, dryer and electric water heater off solar.
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Old 12-01-2021, 08:06 AM   #6
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RS O'Donnell, nice setup.
I am planning on a solar addition to my 3121rl this spring and was wondering what route/location you used to drop the panel wires from the roof to the solar charge controllers.
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Old 12-01-2021, 02:31 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hooterville View Post
RS O'Donnell, nice setup.
I am planning on a solar addition to my 3121rl this spring and was wondering what route/location you used to drop the panel wires from the roof to the solar charge controllers.
Fortunately I didn't have to. It came prewired.

I just had to wire my panels in three groups of four series wired panels then wire those three groups in parallel so I could use the 10 gauge.
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Old 12-05-2021, 05:58 PM   #8
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DON'T FORGET that solar depends on where you are camping, not just the weather. If you camp at the beach or the desert, you can quite often rely on solar. If you camp in the mountains, under pine trees and such, solar is almost useless.
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Old 12-05-2021, 07:43 PM   #9
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That depends on several factors. We spent 14 days here at 9,000 ft and never had a day where we didnít get back to 100% by sundown. Never had to run the generator at all.
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Old 12-06-2021, 09:16 AM   #10
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Very true...we have had to navigate these challenges for years when we are back in the PNW. These are the conditions that make ground deployable arrays appealing for some.
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Old 12-06-2021, 09:53 AM   #11
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Iíve been amazed how good solar works even on overcast days. This is right now with oven fan running.
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Old 12-06-2021, 12:03 PM   #12
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Same cloud cover, already topped off.
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Old 12-08-2021, 12:43 PM   #13
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We have had solar for 4 years now and are almost comfortable with our setup. We have 480 watts on the roof, a 40 amp solar controller, and 4 6volt AGM batteries at 224 amp hrs each. Our inverter is a 3000 watt which is oversize because I got it (hardly) used. I also added a Trimetric power monitor. The wire from each panel is # 8 over to the bus, then # 6 down to the controller and on to the batts.
We run the coffee maker(Keurig) to make 6 cups a day, the toaster, the tv for 2 or 3 hrs a night and the microwave for short times. Occasionally my wife uses the Instant cooker in mid afternoon. Most days in Arizona or Mexico we're at 100% by 4 pm. We are expanding our system to 680 watts on the roof and adding 2 more of the same batts. Because not all days are totally sun so we want more charging capacity for the less sunny days. I installed the system myself after a lot of "homework". I brought the two # 6 wires down from the bus to the controller right alongside the bathroom roof vent. Ours is a 3720. I hope this helps.
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