Originally Posted by Ruthe
We have a 95 watt solar panel and a small inverter (think it's 600 watts) I'm thinking about taking the crockpot ...
...My small one is 200 watts and the larger one is 240 -- This time we won't be alone -- there will at times be a crowd of adult children and I'm hoping to be able to make stews that simmer all day
The math is not favorable.
"simmer all day" equates to cooking continuously for 6 hours then 440 watts times 6 hours is 2640 watt-hours which is 220 amp-hours. (This is assuming 100% conversion in the inverter. Lets ignore inverter and wire losses for this discussion.)
you have the dual battery option than your dinner will essentially use up all your battery - minus what the 95 watt solar panel can replace - in "too much shade". Which in the worst case - shade and rain - is nothing.
One option to consider, if pocket book and gear space allow; an additional solar panel, to be used on cooking days. If you can manage a second 95 watt panel then the two - 190 watts total - will offset half the cooking power - assuming sun for 8 hours. Then your battery is only half empty and will fill up the next day. Not great but doable. The bottom line is that using 110v heating appliances is very hard on the energy equation.