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Author Topic: Electricity without a power source??  (Read 2684 times)

swissmisswithkids

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Electricity without a power source??
« on: January 05, 2016, 01:59:57 PM »
Okay, this might be a very basic question, but: I have a Fleetwood wilderness advantage 2004 5th Wheel, it supposingly has electricity and propane. Only, a lot of things don't work in there the way they were supposed to and being an new-timer, I didn't know how to check.... long story short, the guy told me, that I can hook up the lights, fridge, hot water and heating to the propane if I am not near a power source. Is that true now or does it only work for fridge, hot water and heating and we will have no electricity? On the net, it always talks about the fridge, but that really is my smallest problem. We will be without power source in a week and I cannot reschedule this, so I need to know...
Also, when I bought it, it had two batteries in there, but now it only suddenly has one (and I think that one was stolen yesterday too, although I need to check tonight again - so you see my urgency to leave this place...). Do I need them? The guy told me, they are 'just for your truck if it breakes down'.
I understand, I went into this supernaive, but please help me out, so I can make this work for the kids and me, and we can move towards the national park as planned!!

Irover

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2016, 02:08:01 PM »
 
The batteries supply the 12 volts needed to ignite the propane; run all the appliances and the lights; better use them wisely as they can run out of power if use is excessive! Good for a night or maybe two. You need to recharge them from your tow vehicle. Cord hooked up and vehicle running.
Don't ever give up!! keep pushing toward the goal!!!
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swissmisswithkids

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2016, 02:11:49 PM »
Got it, thank you!! I can figure out, how to make this for a week or so, I think, yay   :D   ....

kdbgoat

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2016, 02:19:56 PM »
Assuming you have to buy new batteries,  get 2 GC2 6 volt batteries and wire them in series.  The is an article in the library about batteries.  Read that to understand more about what you are looking at. I don't know how to post a link to the article. Maybe someone else can direct you to the right place.
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Rene T

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2016, 02:49:54 PM »
The batteries are also for your trailer brakes.  You NEED them.  Do not tow the trailer without those batteries being there or at least one. When you hook up the trailer to the truck, there is a small wire cable which has to be connected to the hitch someplace. Follow it back about 3 feet and it goes to a electrical switch. If the trailer should disconnect from the truck, that cable will pull a plastic pin out of the disconnect switch sending 12 volt DC power to the trailer brakes to stop it.   VERY IMPORTANT. 
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rambler28

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2016, 06:17:21 PM »
Keep those batteries charged you can pickup a generator and charger a harbor freight for about a $100. They're cheap but they work.
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JDOnTheGo

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2016, 06:54:03 AM »
As noted, without being plugged into shore power (110 volt AC), your 12 volt DC batteries are your power source.  To keep them charged (without being plugged in) you basically have three choices. Run your tow vehicle (this is a very poor option), run a generator, or add a solar system.  Many people use generators. If you go this route, please-please-please get a quality unit that is QUIET (like a Honda).  The cheap and construction site generators are loud and cause people to hate you.  Solar is my preferred option as it is silent. It requires some effort to come up with the ideal system for you and your needs and comes with an up-front cost.
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Great Horned Owl

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2016, 08:30:14 AM »
Keep those batteries charged you can pickup a generator and charger a harbor freight for about a $100. They're cheap but they work.

That generator from Harbor Freight is certainly cheap, and it will keep your batteries charged, if you and you neighbors can stand the noise. It is rated at 91 dBA, at an unspecified distance. It is also a 2 cycle engine, so you would be mixing oil with the gasoline. You will be much better off spending more and getting a quieter one. Look at the inverter generators.

The 2kW generators from Honda and Yamaha have the best reputation, but will cost over $1000. Champion and several other manufacturers make very  similar generators for around $500. Picking one, the Champion is rated 53 dBA at 23 ft. Harbor Freight also has an inverter generator that is rated 64 dBA at 23 ft. at an unspecified distance.

Be aware that the dB scale is not linear. Every 10 dB increase will double the volume.

Joel
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John From Detroit

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #8 on: January 06, 2016, 10:47:41 AM »
As Noted: Lights in an RV are generally battery operated.. Of course some VERY VERY old RV's had gas lights but those are hard to find.

Fans, including the furnace blower, are 12 volt and the furnace uses 12 volt for administration and control .

Water heater and fridge can run on 120v or on Propane in most cases but again use 12 volt for administration and control.

Air Conditioners, if you have a wall mounted Thermostat, use 12 volt for control  If you have a "Remote" operated thermostat they use 12 volt. If the Thermostat is a knob in the ceiling part of the A/C then they MIGHT NOT use 12 volt.. or might. always for control the thing runs on 120vac.

Batteries: Of you have one it is 12 volt likely a group 27 or 29 MARINE/deep cycvle..  If you have the room consider a pair of GC-2 (Six volt) wired in series.. here is why

Group 24  about 75 Amp Hours (All these are at the 20  hour rate and exclusive of Optima which has 40% less)
Group 27  about 95
Group 29  About 105
Group 31 About 130

These MARINE/deep cycle types do not like to be run down much, you can safely use perhaps 30% of the capacity before you start to age the batttery big time.. Do and "OPPS" and you may need to replace.  (OOPS is run ';em WAY down, Starting batteries you can OPPS once and then you replace, Marine / Deep cycle may recover once or twice but i'd not bet on it)

True DEEP CYCLE batteries like the GC-2 Golf Car you can use half their capacity safely and they do a much better job of recovery if you OPPS.. Of course the Golf Car type do need to be watered (Distilled only) from time to time.

They also hold 220 amp hours give or take 10 amp hours per pair  That is more than twice a pair of Group 29, and more than twice the USABLE power of a group 31. pair.
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Clay L

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #9 on: January 06, 2016, 01:28:10 PM »
One thing I didn't see mentioned is that stuff that requires 120 vac like air conditioners, microwaves, most TVs, etc will not operate unless you have an inverter that converts 12 vdc to 120 vac. Even then the AC and microwave use so much power that in general it is not practical to operate them with an inverter and batteries. Running TVs, DVD players, satellite receivers, and laptops  is practical and is often done.
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Irover

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #10 on: January 06, 2016, 01:43:14 PM »
 ;D Hey Guys; The OP said she was doing this for a week or so! Solar or a Genny is a quite an expense for a week or two.  :o :o
Don't ever give up!! keep pushing toward the goal!!!
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JDOnTheGo

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #11 on: January 06, 2016, 01:50:03 PM »
;D Hey Guys; The OP said she was doing this for a week or so! Solar or a Genny is a quite an expense for a week or two.  :o :o

I'm not seeing that, can you point us to the quote please?
JD - Full timer out west
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Gord Nelson

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #12 on: January 06, 2016, 03:00:05 PM »
Got it, thank you!! I can figure out, how to make this for a week or so, I think, yay   :D   ....


 8)

Perhaps she will come back and clarify if there will be more ..."for a week or so" periods to come.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2016, 03:04:01 PM by Gord Nelson »

JDOnTheGo

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #13 on: January 06, 2016, 03:09:22 PM »
Ok, my apologies, all I saw was the following. I read this as "in one week, she will be without power" and probably at a national park (many of which do not have electrical hook ups).  Carry on...

We will be without power source in a week and I cannot reschedule this, so I need to know...

....so I can make this work for the kids and me, and we can move towards the national park as planned!!
JD - Full timer out west
1998 MCI 102 EL3 Revolution | 2010 Wrangler (daJeep) | 650 Watts Solar
My Adventures

John From Detroit

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #14 on: January 06, 2016, 05:20:12 PM »
Rental of a generator for a week might work.. Do not know the rental fee but I'd guess it would be less than ownership.
Nothing adds excitement like something that is none of your business
My Home is where I park it.

kdbgoat

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #15 on: January 06, 2016, 06:07:01 PM »
Rental of a generator for a week might work.. Do not know the rental fee but I'd guess it would be less than ownership.

Apparently you haven't rented anything lately. If you're going to rent, you would probably be better off buying used and resell when you're done with it.
I know you believe you understand what you think I said,
But I am not sure you realize what you heard is not what I meant


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Lou Schneider

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #16 on: January 06, 2016, 06:52:22 PM »
Yup.  I had a friend who ran a rental yard up in WA.  Standard practice is for 21 days rental to cover the equipment's cost, beyond that it's all profit except for maintenance.

Irover

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #17 on: January 07, 2016, 11:10:46 AM »
Got it, thank you!! I can figure out, how to make this for a week or so, I think, yay   :D   ....

  JFNM: The way I seen it!  8) Sorry! Some time it is better for me not to respond!  ::)
Don't ever give up!! keep pushing toward the goal!!!
USAEUR; 1st Armored Div., E Co.123rd Maintenance Btln. 71-74

Gord Nelson

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Re: Electricity without a power source??
« Reply #18 on: January 07, 2016, 05:24:41 PM »
  JFNM: The way I seen it!  8) Sorry! Some time it is better for me not to respond!  ::)

Naw, not wrong.  It was confusing to me too.  In the first para. she said we'll be without power in a week.....,   then in the one I quoted, she said "we can make that work for a week or so". 

Anyway, all the comments were valid in my view, just by the way they interpreted the two different statements.  Your comment made just as much sense. IMHO.   ;)

 

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