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Old 10-12-2014, 11:30 AM   #11
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Normally the solar panels are permanently mounted to the roof, so you can fish whenever you want. 160 is the wattage. You can get the trailer prewired for solar without the panel and controller installed, making it easier to install later if you so decide.

Some of the folks are getting portable panels, which you move around in the sun as needed.
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Old 10-12-2014, 12:33 PM   #12
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The solar panel is mounted on the roof, out of sight and out of the way, in the rear of the trailer. The 160 means watts which divided by 12v means about 13-14 amps per hour charge. By noon your battery will be full, every day. I believe the solar option is $700 if my memory serves me right.
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Old 10-12-2014, 12:38 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by padlin View Post
Normally the solar panels are permanently mounted to the roof, so you can fish whenever you want. 160 is the wattage. You can get the trailer prewired for solar without the panel and controller installed, making it easier to install later if you so decide.

Some of the folks are getting portable panels, which you move around in the sun as needed.
Portable would almost require the same effort as dragging out a generator.Escape installs them on the roof? I'll have to drop a line to Tammy..Thanks
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Old 10-12-2014, 01:01 PM   #14
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The 160 watt solar option is listed for $850.00 Canadian (which would be $760.00 US these days)


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Old 10-12-2014, 01:27 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
The solar panel is mounted on the roof, out of sight and out of the way, in the rear of the trailer. The 160 means watts which divided by 12v means about 13-14 amps per hour charge. By noon your battery will be full, every day. I believe the solar option is $700 if my memory serves me right.
They are rated for 9.14A, best I've gotten in a full day was about 50A in the dead of summer in Ma.
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Old 10-12-2014, 02:11 PM   #16
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Welcome Brian,
We do not have solar and we only carry a Yamaha 2400 generator on extended trips. The Yamaha is very quiet, like the Honda, but it does make noise. We use it to run our A/C and charge the battery when absolutely necessary. It's gotten very little use, but it has come in handy. Carrying a generator requires a pickup for towing. I won't carry a generator inside a vehicle for safety reasons. I love pickups so that's not a problem, but others like their SUVs. A generator has its drawbacks, like requiring gas, maintenance, towing with a P/U, its size and weight, but solar has drawbacks too. It can't run A/C, and running the microwave, hairdryers, and some other things would require more investment in equipment. So the way I see it, the cost of each (including onboard inverters etc) is very near the same. Solar is easier to transport, is quieter, (because it’s passive) and requires less maintenance. But a properly sized generator will run everything while solar will not. With that said, I do admit that I don't like taking the generator for so little use, and if I didn’t already own one I’m not sure I would buy one.
Tom

PS; I haven't heard of the memory problem with generators that you mentioned.
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Old 10-12-2014, 02:41 PM   #17
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We have a Honda 2000 watt and had solar on our 19 and will
Have the newer 160 watt panel on the 21. We would never Have a trailer without solar again . We don't even bring the generator most of the time . Other than using it to make sure it still works we have not needed. I can't imagine going back to not having solar. The only time make sure to have hook ups is if it's going to be really hot for the ac
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Old 10-12-2014, 02:56 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
The 160 means watts which divided by 12v means about 13-14 amps per hour charge. By noon your battery will be full, every day.
I see two issues with that charging current expectation:
  • Charging the battery takes more voltage than the battery has already, so the number to divide by is not 12, but at least 13 and by the end over 14.
  • The 160-watt power rating is in ideal conditions of full sun, panel oriented directly to the sun, and load (battery) at the ideal voltage for the panel characteristic - none of those will exist.

Quote:
Originally Posted by padlin View Post
They are rated for 9.14A, best I've gotten in a full day was about 50A in the dead of summer in Ma.
That looks like a more realistic rating - 9.14A at 17.5V. 50 amp-hours over a day would be equivalent to about six hours of excellent conditions (less than perfect, and at a little lower voltage than for peak power thus yielding more current), resulting from over 12 hours of varying and never ideal conditions, which seems reasonable.

If you only use 25 amp-hours from the battery a day, then I can see this panel getting the battery charge back up by noon in the summer.
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Old 10-12-2014, 04:14 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
I see two issues with that charging current expectation:
[*]Charging the battery takes more voltage than the battery has already, so the number to divide by is not 12, but at least 13 and by the end over 14.[*]The 160-watt power rating is in ideal conditions of full sun, panel oriented directly to the sun, and load (battery) at the ideal voltage for the panel characteristic - none of those will exist.
Spot on. The Charge Controller efficiency figures into that as well.
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