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Author Topic: Getting ready for solar  (Read 114 times)

MartyB

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Getting ready for solar
« on: October 15, 2017, 06:27:08 PM »
I am getting ready to jump into the solar pool.  I have a 2014 Lifestyle Luxury 40' 5er.  I picked it up used.  I have a transfer switch in the forward comp.  I believe it once had a genny but not now.  I'm just curious.  Do I need this switch?  I also have an Intellipower 9260 converter.  Does it run as well as the house converter or should I disconnect it?
Sorry if I don't have much info.  I really don't know where to start with my questions.

halfwright

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  • Posts: 1163
Re: Getting ready for solar
« Reply #1 on: October 15, 2017, 06:44:01 PM »
The place to start is with an energy audit. Find out how many amp/hours you use in 24 hours, add 70% and build the system to generate that. 50%  so you will not drain your batteries and 20% for overcast days.
Jim And Darlene Wright
Full-timing with
Ryder, the Ethiopian monkeybeaver dog
and a
2007 Montana Mountaineer
2002 F250 Super duty 7.3 liter

Frank B

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Re: Getting ready for solar
« Reply #2 on: October 15, 2017, 07:21:03 PM »
MartyB:


Yes, as noted, decide how much you want to run on solar. 


If you are just wanting to keep the batteries up for lighting while boondocking, then you won't need much. 


If you want to run TV regularly in the evenings, a computer, electric toaster, microwave, and so on, then you will need a much larger system, and a LOT of batteries. 


If you want to run an air conditioner as well, now you are talking a REALLY BIG solar system, and a REALLY BIG battery bank.


With each level of consumption, the complexity and the price goes way up.  :-(



Linux:  Free, open, elegant.
06 GMC 3500 Duramax crew/long pulling 2010 Arctic Fox 30U with 1700 lb Reese Titan Class 5.
1.2 kw solar

Kevin Means

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    • Tactical Flying
Re: Getting ready for solar
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2017, 02:59:31 PM »
The transfer switch is there to automatically switch between A/C sources, usually shore-power and generator-power. Since you don't have a generator, you don't need a transfer switch, but it won't hurt anything to leave it there.

I don't know what kind of converter/charger you have in your 5th wheel now, but the 9260 is a decent converter. It has a 60 amp charger, and I believe it's also a three-stage charger, which is much better than the older two-stage "dumb" chargers. If you've got a converter with an old two-stage charger, I'd definitely recommend swapping it with the 9260.

There's nothing terribly difficult or confusing about installing a solar system, but it's easy to make some simple mistakes and be disappointed with the results. Several of us here rely heavily on solar power when boondocking, and collectively, we've probably made most of the common mistakes. When you think you're ready to move foward with solar, post your questions in the "child" discussion area entitled "Solar." That'll get you the most responses.

Kev
2011 Winnebago Tour 42QD
Towing a Jeep Rubicon Unlimited LJ or an Acura MDX
RVI Brake 2, Minder TM-66 TPMS, 970 watts of solar
(Can't wait to spend more time RVing)
Lakeside, California

AStravelers

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  • Part time travelers, 4-8 months each year.
Re: Getting ready for solar
« Reply #4 on: Today at 06:21:23 AM »
I am getting ready to jump into the solar pool.  I have a 2014 Lifestyle Luxury 40' 5er.  I picked it up used.  I have a transfer switch in the forward comp.  I believe it once had a genny but not now.  I'm just curious.  Do I need this switch?  I also have an Intellipower 9260 converter.  Does it run as well as the house converter or should I disconnect it?
Sorry if I don't have much info.  I really don't know where to start with my questions.
These links will help provide some answers to questions you haven't thought about.  There is quite a bit to learn before tossing a couple of solar panels up in the roof. 
As Kevin said it is not terribly difficult, but there are a lot of details to get right to get a well working system. 

These two give excellent basic information:
http://www.marxrv.com/12volt/12volt.htm
http://www.marxrv.com/12volt/12volta.htm

This link starts out with the very basics about RV electric at the shore power connections and goes through inverters:
http://www.rv-dreams.com/rv-electrical.html

These two have a lot of pretty technical info, excellent for designing as solar system, batteries and inverter/charger.
http://www.jackdanmayer.com/rv_electrical_and_solar.htm
http://www.jackdanmayer.com/Batteries_and_charging.html

Al & Sharon
2006 Winnebago Sightseer 29R
2009 Chevy Colorado 4X4

http://downtheroadaroundthebend.blogspot.com/

 

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