New battery box and portable solar setup - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 04-14-2019, 04:22 PM   #1
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Micheal K's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Lake Country, British Columbia
Trailer: 2017 Escape 19
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New battery box and portable solar setup

This modification may be of interest to those without the storage box or solar options. I replaced the factory battery box with a small tongue box that has space for two batteries (maybe in the future for us) or one battery and a bit of gear.

On the top of the box I mounted a 25W solar panel, and on the side I mounted a control, a zamp solar port for our portable panels, and a 12V outlet.

The control is a Renogy Voyager which I chose mainly because it has an IP65 (suitably waterproof) enclosure and it's cost effective.

I got the box from etrailer.com for less than $100 USD but prices seem to fluctuate a lot on that site - currently the price is quite a bit higher. The box weighs only about 20 lbs, which was important to me but the metal is consequently somewhat thin.

I was originally going to make a plywood floor with a cutout to hold the battery in place but then I would have had to figure out a secure way to cover the battery terminals so I decided that for now it was easier to simply mount the plastic battery holder in the new box.

The way our trailer is parked, the little panel does get some direct sun in the afternoons so it should do a good job keeping the battery topped up by itself.
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Old 04-14-2019, 11:52 PM   #2
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I always like to park my trailer with the hitch facing NORTH, so the sun rises on the curb side, and sets on the street side, so I get maximum afternoon shade ... this would make the trailer tongue less than a optimal solar mount.
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Old 04-15-2019, 09:25 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John in Santa Cruz View Post
I always like to park my trailer with the hitch facing NORTH, so the sun rises on the curb side, and sets on the street side, so I get maximum afternoon shade ... this would make the trailer tongue less than a optimal solar mount.
This makes sense.

My comment was only referring to how our trailer is oriented when parked in our driveway at home. Also, 25W would not be enough to keep the batteries replenished when we’re out camping, so I’d put out our portable panels (2x50W) as well.
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