Go Back   iRV2 Forums > MOTORHOME FORUMS > Class A Motorhome Discussions
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on iRV2
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 04-14-2013, 04:42 AM   #1
Junior Member
rdentist99's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 22
Size of Solar Panel?

Hi, I just installed some GREAT AGM batteries on my 2007 Tiffin Allegro Bus. I want to keep these batteries in top shape. I store my motorhome in a lot where I can't plug into electricity, so I'm looking into solar panels to keep batteries from draining. I'm not looking so much for the ability to actually charge the batteries from a discharged state, but only to maintain them in a charged state. I see that battery tender has a 15W panel with a built in controller, but I have no idea if that is enough. Again, I'm not looking for panels to provide enough juice for boondocking or similar.... just enough juice to keep the batteries from discharging while in storage. Thanks!!!

2007 Tiffin Allegro Bus
rdentist99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 04-14-2013, 04:54 AM   #2
Senior Member
wb7auk's Avatar

National RV Owners Club
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Spokane Valley, Wa
Posts: 1,945
How many batteries are we talking about?

1999 Trade Winds 7371 Cat 3126B w/current upgrades
1990 D 250 Dodge Ram Cummins Turbo
wb7auk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-14-2013, 05:10 AM   #3
Senior Member
Shadowcatche's Avatar
iRV2 No Limits Club
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 1,183
One of the advantages to AGM batteries is that they do not self discharge at the same rate as conventional deep cycle batteries so no damage if disconnected for long periods. This however is the key, no draw powering anything. This gets to the you need to monitor the batteries and the best choices to do that are a Vectron or Trimetric battery monitor. Either one can tell you the condition of you batteries and if you do not disconnect, leaving some loads on, what that current draw is. That will tell you what size panel(s) you will need. We have a large teardrop trailer with a 150AH Concord AGM and the 185W panel supplis all of our needs including maintaining the battery.
Shadowcatche is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-14-2013, 09:17 AM   #4
Senior Member
Pigman1's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 1,639
Your Tiffin should have had a single 120W solar panel available as an option for that year. That panel would have been fine for maintaining your batteries if it was installed. If not you can go either of two ways. Get a panel and small charge controller and install it like the optional pannel Tiffin used to install, or go down into your two battery compartments and find the manual battery disconnects. They are large manual switches that you have to rotate a quarter turn to the right to completely isolate the house and engine batteries. When rotated, the green "ON" will show a red "OFF" legend on the switch. With the AGM's you should be fine for the winter as long as no one hooked any other pirate draw directly to the batteries. You can also disconnect the ground feed directly from the batteries, but the rotary shut-offs are a lot easier.
2013 Tiffin Allegro Bus 43QGP
2011 Chevy Silverado 1500 Toad
Pigman1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2013, 04:50 AM   #5
Senior Member
Tiffin Owners Club
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 584
We have a small 5W panel on our motorhome and leave our mh in storage several months at a time (Florida in the winter, Ontario in the summer) and even with that, I've never had a low battery when we took it out of storage. You're Bus probably has 2 chassis & 4 house so you probably need a bit more than us but I'm sure anything over 20W will be fine as long as you have good sun exposure.

If your batteries are full charged when you put it in storage and you do use the battery disconnects, you really don't need much to keep them topped off.
michelb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2013, 05:27 AM   #6
Junior Member
rdentist99's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 22
thank you all for your replies... yes we have 4 house batteries. I will try the disconnect method using the rotary switches. I didn't realize they had a slower discharge rate... so hopefully this will work out.

2007 Tiffin Allegro Bus
rdentist99 is offline   Reply With Quote


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities

Copyright 2002-2015 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:21 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.