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Old 01-26-2016, 04:09 PM   #1
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Cool Generator Vs. Solar Panels

I have a 24' Blue bird mid sized school bus that I am converting into an RV. I am trying to go off the grid for 2-4 days per week on an extended retirement adventure after I retire in 1230 days. I have researched using solar panels or a 2000-3000 w generator. The solar panels of course would be eco friendly and all, but I don't think they would handle the expected load projected. We will be using a portable floor model air conditioner, microwave, small refrigerator, tv, lights and etc...so solar panels would not even be close to handling the wattage for even a fraction of the use. My question is, based on your personal experience - which inverter generator would you recommend and why...thanks in advance for any help this great group of adventurers can provide...
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Old 01-26-2016, 04:55 PM   #2
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Honda eu3000i. Quieter then the eu2000i.

Don't get the 3000 Handi, that one is louder.

Champions are cheap but noise rated at zero load and 23 feet. Kind of deciving.
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Old 01-26-2016, 05:26 PM   #3
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Solar panels can wrk, it's just a matter of installing enough panels and also having enough batteries to store the power..... O yea, also the amount of sun wherever you plan on staying has a little to do as well.

Have you calculated ho much power you need
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Old 01-26-2016, 05:41 PM   #4
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Both. We have 3 panels (don't know total wattage off hand) and we use that backed up by our generator.
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Old 01-26-2016, 06:17 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by NC25T View Post
Solar panels can wrk, it's just a matter of installing enough panels and also having enough batteries to store the power..... O yea, also the amount of sun wherever you plan on staying has a little to do as well.

Have you calculated ho much power you need
A small 8000 BTU air conditioner will draw 8 amps 120 volts. That works out to 80 amps 12 volts DC.

Running 3/4 of the time will use 60 AH. Do that for 12 hours overnight and run down 1500 AH of batteries to 50%. That over 12, 6 volt batteries at 76 lb a piece.

I half a ton of batteries and I'll bet the AC isn't going to be close to cooling down a bus.

Now you need to create 800 AH of power from the confines of a bus roof in 6 to 8 hours. 2500 + watts of panels should do it.

What else did you want to run ?
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Old 01-27-2016, 08:38 AM   #6
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Thanks for the replies so far. .we have a floor model 12000 btu air conditioner that uses 1340 w and runs on 110v...the bus interior dimensions are 8' wide x 16' long x about 6 1/2 ' tall..our estimated power consumption with the a/c would be around 1500 to 2000 including a small 3.2cf Refrigerator. .the only thing I'm kind of confused on is the actual watts used when the ac and rf are running compared to when they first kick on. ..I don't have room to add more than 3 Solar panels, or the room to store more than a couple batteries. .then there is the issue of venting batteries. .sounds easier and cheaper to get a good quiet generator. ..I seems that the Honda EU line is the highest rated and lowest Db available. ..
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