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Author Topic: Boondockin' With A Baby Monitor?  (Read 1407 times)

Boondockin' With A Baby Monitor?
« on: June 22, 2016, 05:44:26 PM »
Hi Everyone! I'm a newbie with our first fifth wheel. We've got some trips coming up some of which will be boondocking. We probably will not boondock more than 5 consecutive nights (most trips will be 3 nights). Anyway, I need to figure out how to have a power source to power up my baby's video monitor (the camera portion) all night without running the generator. I have been researching portable inverters but I have no idea what I am doing. Is there a power source out there that will power the video monitor all night long without having to be plugged into a battery?

Happy Prospector

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Re: Boondockin' With A Baby Monitor?
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2016, 08:28:44 PM »
Sure there is, just run your generator.




The information is out there, all you have to do is let it in.
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robertusa123

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Re: Boondockin' With A Baby Monitor?
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2016, 08:32:30 PM »
The baby monitor draws very little power.    A small inverter that plugs into the 12volt power socket should be more then enouf to power the unit.   Hope it dose t need a internet single yo work
« Last Edit: June 22, 2016, 08:37:26 PM by robertusa123 »
1996  26ft. 3 kids 2 dog and the wife too

Sun2Retire

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Re: Boondockin' With A Baby Monitor?
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2016, 09:12:32 PM »
The baby monitor draws very little power.    A small inverter that plugs into the 12volt power socket should be more then enouf to power the unit.   Hope it dose t need a internet single yo work

OP made it clear they didn't want to run the genset.

As robertusa stated, they draw almost nothing. Literally the smallest portable inverter (made to plug into 12v socket) you could find would work. Been a long time since I had kids but I think they use frequencies similar to portable phones. You'll need two, one for the receiver end also.

Second option: I think all those monitors actually run off low voltage and use a transformer "brick" to plug into AC. You can find out the voltage needed by reading the tiny print for output on the brick. If you're lucky and it's 12v you can cut the wires and attach a "cigarette lighter" plug on the end. If a lower voltage you can get a step down converter (Amazon, cheap) to go from 12v down to needed voltage. A little fussy and maybe more than you wanted to do. If so, back to the small inverters.
Scott
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robertusa123

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Re: Boondockin' With A Baby Monitor?
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2016, 06:09:25 AM »
I got one of them running a Nintendo 64 in my conversion van.     
1996  26ft. 3 kids 2 dog and the wife too

JDOnTheGo

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Re: Boondockin' With A Baby Monitor?
« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2016, 06:52:16 AM »
Howdy WestCoastRoadWarrior, take a look at your monitor and it should list its power requirements in watts.  This is a reasonable starting point for an inverter (if that is the route you take).  I bet it is a very small number - probably less than 100 watts.  For very small inverters like that (100 watts), Walmart, Amazon, and such are fine sources.

If you are electronics oriented, I like Scott's idea - use your existing 12 volt DC source without all the voltage conversions.

This all assumes that you have a 12 volt battery bank in your RV.
JD - Full timer out west
1998 MCI 102 EL3 Revolution | 2010 Wrangler (daJeep) | 650 Watts Solar
My Adventures

Re: Boondockin' With A Baby Monitor?
« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2016, 10:56:35 AM »
Thanks everyone!

The generator option would work to charge our batteries in the mornings, however, running it all night long may make us bad neighbors!  ;)

I'm looking at inverters now. Thank you for the wonderful suggestions! I am  buying a baby monitor specificlly for our RV so I do not know the voltage requiments at this time. I should know in the next day or so for sure and will wait to purchase my inverter.

Have any of you used an inverter to power something for long periods of time (i.e. run a baby monitor most of the night or charge a cell phone)? If so, how long before you drain your battery? Also, how does it take running your generator to charge your battery fully? I know this is just an approximation since every rig is different. We plan to camp Yosemite in the fall. The park is 100% boodocking and they have strict ruls about running the generator. I'm just trying to get an idea.

We plan to boondock for the weekend in our yard to get things figured out, but I'd love some input. We really have NO IDEA what we are doing. This weekend (in our yard) will be the first time we've even plugged the rig in. Hopefully we can figure out the sewer situation!  ;D Thank goodness for YouTube and you guys!

Kevin Means

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Re: Boondockin' With A Baby Monitor?
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2016, 01:24:29 AM »
Most of our camping is boondocking, and our coach has a large residential fridge that runs 24 hours a day off the inverter - not to mention the TVs, lights, cell phone and laptop chargers. The inverter itself also draws a fair amount of power, because it's a 2800 watt system, but as long as we've got sunshine, our solar keeps us fully charged.

Kev
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Lakeside, California

robertusa123

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Re: Boondockin' With A Baby Monitor?
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2016, 10:18:14 PM »
We run a 12 in table fan on the inverter. Runs all night no problem
When the power level drops the battery to 11 volts the inverter shuts down. Still leaving enouf power for light and water pump
1996  26ft. 3 kids 2 dog and the wife too

JDOnTheGo

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Re: Boondockin' With A Baby Monitor?
« Reply #9 on: June 25, 2016, 11:35:47 AM »
When the power level drops the battery to 11 volts the inverter shuts down. Still leaving enouf power for light and water pump

Discharging a battery to the 11 volt range is basically dead or zero percent state of charge.  This is very damaging to a battery and will result in a very short life span.
JD - Full timer out west
1998 MCI 102 EL3 Revolution | 2010 Wrangler (daJeep) | 650 Watts Solar
My Adventures

denmarc

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Re: Boondockin' With A Baby Monitor?
« Reply #10 on: June 26, 2016, 03:56:05 AM »
Anyway, I need to figure out how to have a power source to power up my baby's video monitor

Just asking,
Does it need to be a video monitor? While I'm sure it doesn't use much power, the plain old audio monitors use even less power. I just wondered if the camera was a necessity?
Mark

1994 Jayco Eagle 370FB on 24 acres of paid off paradise in Michigan.

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