Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Tech Issues: Learn about solar for rv's
Open Roads Forum Already a member? Login here.   If not, Register Today!  |  Help

Newest  |  Active  |  Popular  |  RVing FAQ Forum Rules  |  Forum Posting Help and Support  |  Contact  

Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in Tech Issues

Open Roads Forum  >  Tech Issues

 > Learn about solar for rv's

Reply to Topic  |  Subscribe  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 3  
Next
D.E.Bishop

Eagle Rock, CA

Senior Member

Joined: 08/09/2001

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 08/26/19 09:57am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Any suggestions about books for the novice DIY solar installer?

I have searched but I don't get much from the subjects I try and I would like to learn a lot more than how to use my Deltran 15 watt trickle charger.

I am interested in series or parallel setups, controller features, wiring, mounts. I have looked at several big brand components but I'd like a Solar 101 book. I want to learn the basics of solar.

By Solar 101, I mean basic, like English 101 or Dumbbell English.

I did find a S&B solar supply store near me where I can actually see and pick up and feel what I am learning about.


"I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to go". R. L. Stevenson

David Bishop
2002 Winnebago Adventurer 32V
Back to a 2006 Suzi GV
Roadmaster 5000
Roadmaster Invisibrake


2oldman

Ca

Senior Member

Joined: 04/15/2001

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 08/26/19 10:18am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Youtube is always there for almost any subject. '12v side of life' is a great start to understanding RV 12v systems.

To be proficient at solar you first need to be proficient at electricity.

LittleBill

Scranton, PA USA

Senior Member

Joined: 08/29/2003

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 08/26/19 11:18am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

has a youtube channel as well





jplante4

Cape Cod

Moderator

Joined: 07/29/2014

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 08/26/19 11:29am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I recently got one of these to supplement the 200 watts on the roof and it couldn't be simpler. Put the panel in the sun, connect alligator clamps to the battery and plug in the cables. There is a one time setup item if you have flooded cells but that's it.

[image]

[image]

[image]


Jerry & Jeanne
1996 Safari Sahara 3530 - 'White Tiger'
CAT 3126/Allison 6 speed/Magnum Chassis
2014 Equinox AWD / Blue Ox


JiminDenver

Denver, Co

Senior Member

Joined: 09/09/2011

View Profile



Posted: 08/26/19 11:42am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You have a massive resource of info right here from people that actually use solar. Anyone can google up a storm and put it all into a book. Experience is what gives a person the understanding needed to know why to choose between the options and not just pick the best of because sometimes what something is the best of at has nothing to do with your needs.


2011 GulfStream Amerilite 25BH
2003 Ford Expedition with 435w tilting portable/ TS-MPPT-45
750w solar , TS-MPPT-60 on the trailer
675 Ah bank, Trip-lite 1250fc inverter
Sportsman 2200w inverter generator


time2roll

Southern California

Senior Member

Joined: 03/21/2005

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member


Posted: 08/26/19 11:57am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Sorry I don't have a book. Try to think of solar as just a battery charger. You need to figure out how many watts you need and the primary purpose. Then it is just a matter of matching the right equipment with the features you want or need. Balance that with equipment cost and installation logistics and you will be on your way.

Post your thoughts right here and you will get lots of help and suggestions.

Most solar books are a bit outdated anyway by the time they are published.


2001 F150 SuperCrew
2006 Keystone Springdale 249FWBHLS
675w Solar pictures back up

pianotuna

Regina, SK, Canada

Senior Member

Joined: 12/18/2004

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 08/26/19 12:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

This link may help:

https://freecampsites.net/adding-solar/

D.E.Bishop wrote:

Any suggestions about books for the novice DIY solar installer?



Regards, Don
My ride is a 28 foot Class C, 256 watts solar, 556 amp hours of AGM in two battery banks 12 volt batteries, 3000 watt Magnum hybrid inverter, Sola Basic Autoformer, Microair Easy Start.

ppine

Northern Nevada

Senior Member

Joined: 07/04/2016

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 08/26/19 12:29pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I suggest "Mobile Solar Power Made Easy"
by William Prowse IV. It is available everywhere.
This book helps people understand how to calculate their needs, how to design a system and how to get the most out of it.

ajriding

st clair

Senior Member

Joined: 12/28/2004

View Profile



Posted: 08/26/19 02:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I don't think it would take a book to teach the basics of solar. I could do it in a few sentences.

You have the panels, the charge controller, the battery and the stuff you will be powering up.

Panels are pretty generic, so you can't go wrong. Mono is cheaper and Poly does a little better in the shade.

Big differences in the charge controllers. No controller and you will put too much current to the battery since most 12 volt panels put out 20 volts at peak. PWM controllers are cheaper, but the MPPT controllers are more efficient so can get more out of the panel than the PWM. With the MPPT you can put 24 volts (40 peak) through the controller and it will bring down the voltage to what it thinks the batteries need at that micro second in time. Your batteries will have a longer life too.
You will pay $100-250 for a good MPPT for your RV.

Batteries are different. You may already have some, so are stuck for now. If you are going to buy, skip the "marine" battery and get two 6-volt golf cart batteries which can handle being discharged many more times than marine. There are"group" batteries that are more $ but better for solar systems. Group 27 is one you will hear talked about a lot.
Two golf cart batteries are fine for the majority of RVers out there, and a 20 amp controller.

Then there is the wire. Use 10 gauge(or 8 if you have it) wire from the solar to the batteries for less losses.
!2-14 might be sufficient if you run your panels in series (positive to negative to positive to negative) to double or triple the voltage. The higher the voltage the smaller the wire can be.

With these simple topics you can do you non-google internet search and find plenty of info.

D.E.Bishop

Eagle Rock, CA

Senior Member

Joined: 08/09/2001

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 08/26/19 04:07pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Well I guess I know everything I need to know, I started at 14, some 65 years ago for the EC my older brothers worked for. I spent a few years involved in the traffic signal field from an Electrical Craft Helper up to and including a District Supervisor with over 100 electricians, electrical craft helpers and laborers. My job evolved over the year from repairing and prepping traffic signal heads for installation in the field to supervising the installation, maintenance and repair of fiber optic cable communication systems.

I don't know squat about solar systems and the equipment involved in RVs.

I guess I already know all I need to know about solar. The sun shines, the panels collect the energy and the wires transmit it to the batteries.

By the way I'm 79 years old and I have been retired for 24+ years, longer than most of you have been members or even smart allecks.

I'll just seek some pros for help.

Reply to Topic  |  Subscribe  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 3  
Next

Open Roads Forum  >  Tech Issues

 > Learn about solar for rv's
Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in Tech Issues


New posts No new posts
Closed, new posts Closed, no new posts
Moved, new posts Moved, no new posts

Adjust text size:

© 2019 CWI, Inc. © 2019 Good Sam Enterprises, LLC. All Rights Reserved. | Terms of Use | PRIVACY POLICY | YOUR PRIVACY RIGHTS