Go Back   iRV2 Forums > TRAVEL TRAILER, 5th WHEEL & TRUCK CAMPER FORUMS > Travel Trailer Discussion
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
Reply
  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 06-21-2016, 09:37 AM   #1
Junior Member
 
Elkoholic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Emmett, Idaho
Posts: 14
"Solar Ready TT"????

Iím new to this forum and looking for some solar options for our trailer! I thought I could find what I was looking for through the search engine but donít see what Iím looking for. I know itís got to be there!

I have a 2016 Keystone Hideout 19FLBWE that I bought last year. This is a replacement for my ďOldĒ hunting trailer that I will take to the mountains for a month in October Ė November. I had a second battery install when I bought the trailer and the dealer made a big Hype that it was ďSolar ReadyĒ. What I didnít know at the time was that it is set up for a Portable Zamp Solar setup" Only". When I started looking though the info that came with the trailer I found nothing that says a word about the solar connection on the side of the trailer or how or where it is hooked up. When I asked the dealer to explain it to me I was told that they would have to sell me the Zamp solar system and they could set it up and explain it to me then. This turned me off of going back to them for any information as itís obvious unless I buy it from them they arenít interested even after I bought ďTheir TrailerĒ! So I tried contacting Keystone via email to which there was No response, So a phone call to Keystone to which I spoke to someone that was supposed to get me the information and return my call. Two weeks later I hear nothing! I then contacted Zamp Solar and am told that they canít help me as to how the manufactures set up the different trailers or wiring. I should contact the manufacturer or my dealer.

Iím looking at the Solarland 120W portable but havenít picked one yet! However I would like to use the Zamp plug-in already on the trailer. I have read that Zamp has a different wiring setup than most other solar panels as for polarity on the wiring? Is the plug as it appears and just an automotive style two prong plug? If so I should be able to reverse the wiring if that is needed when I install the new plug. I just donít want to have to connect it to the batteries each time I set it up!

Any other ideas or options you might have would be appreciated. I really need to stay portable due to where I camp and availability to sun. I have already replaced all the lighting with LED. My electrical needs are pretty minor when Iím hunting a few lights maybe a radio and recharge GPS and of course the water pump and what the trailer uses for daily maintenance ie. Propane Frig, water heater, as well as the propane detector. Heater for a couple hours in the morning and evening.

Thanks to anyone that can point me in the right direction!
__________________

__________________
Elkoholic 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 06-21-2016, 09:56 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Oregon
Posts: 338
You need a zamp solar panel for those connections. Get a portable panel and plug it in that port. Done. Nothing more needs to be done.

If it's like our solar ready outdoorsRV you will also have solar ports on the roof for roof mounted panels. Those require a controller installed inside and should be marked and pre-wired to that location.
OutdoorsRV was running a promo and gave us a free 80w portable zamp panel. Does the job nicely!

On a side note, we owned a 2015 keystone hideout and after a year it had a catastrophic roof leak. And due to their poor warranties there was nothing we could do about it. Sold the trailer, took a loss and upgraded to a quality trailer.
__________________

__________________
2015 Ram 2500 6.7 cummins, Crew Cab
Mid 2016 Outdoors RV Creekside 23DBS, w/backcountry x4 and armor options.
archer75 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-21-2016, 10:09 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
Gilleshps's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 166
That little plug is called an SAE, and it's just wired to the batteries. Zamp doesn't reverse polarity so a simple volt meter will tell you how it's wired and which is hot. Solarland is no comparison to Zamp but you can get it to work.

Is it mounted to the battery box? Little black round flush mounted port, with an oval cover over the two male and female holes?
__________________
Gilleshps is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2016, 08:02 AM   #4
Junior Member
 
Elkoholic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Emmett, Idaho
Posts: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by archer75 View Post
You need a zamp solar panel for those connections. Get a portable panel and plug it in that port. Done. Nothing more needs to be done.

If it's like our solar ready outdoorsRV you will also have solar ports on the roof for roof mounted panels. Those require a controller installed inside and should be marked and pre-wired to that location.
OutdoorsRV was running a promo and gave us a free 80w portable zamp panel. Does the job nicely!

On a side note, we owned a 2015 keystone hideout and after a year it had a catastrophic roof leak. And due to their poor warranties there was nothing we could do about it. Sold the trailer, took a loss and upgraded to a quality trailer.

Thank you for your input. I understand that the connection on the trailer is SAE which will be simple enough to change on any pre-wired unit. However those wires have to connect somewhere in the electrical system. They are not connected directly to the batteries. Iíd just like to know the wiring diagram as to where they are without having to start dismantling something!

As you stated a Zamp system would be simple plug & play however I find it hard to pay $960 for a 120 W. Zamp when I can get the Solarland SLP120F for $500 or Go Power GP-PSK-120 at $550 or go with a Renogy 100 Watts for $279. I see Some good and bad reviews on all of them. Yes in some cases you do get what you pay for and in others you pay for a lot of advertising and hype.

My use for this will be very minimal and very limited. Most any of them will work about the same when they are in storage gathering dust for most of the year.

Part of what turned me away from the Zamp is the dealer that I bought the trailer froms attitude that they will explain the wiring of the trailerís ďSolar Ready packageĒ if and when I buy a solar system from them! They should be more than happy to explain what they have already sold to me.

Yes I have read about keystoneís poor quality and customer Service. That has to be water under the bridge as I already own the trailer so Iíll have to deal with it if need be. Believe me itís still better than the Old Hunting trailer that I have been using for the past 12 years!

Iíll keep reading and research it to death and then one day I just click the button and decide! I have plenty of time still until fall.
__________________
Elkoholic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2016, 08:09 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Oregon
Posts: 338
It's direct to the battery. The portable zamp panel even comes with clips to connect right on the battery if you wish.

The roof ports, if you have them, go to a controller location in the trailer that should be labeled. My trailer has a big sticker on the cabinets above the bed indicating that's where the controller should go and inside the cabinets there's a panel on the top that house the wires.

The system is only $960 if you want a roof panel and a controller. And even then that's MSRP. You should be able to find that for half that price. Or get the stand alone portable panel that comes with it's own built in controller. But check many dealers for pricing. You won't have to pay that much. One member posted a place in arizona where he could get zamp panels for less than half the cost.
__________________
2015 Ram 2500 6.7 cummins, Crew Cab
Mid 2016 Outdoors RV Creekside 23DBS, w/backcountry x4 and armor options.
archer75 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2016, 09:52 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
rideandslide's Avatar


 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Waynesville Georgia
Posts: 1,272
That was a feature on our new Grey Wolf, but really have no use for it unless we decide to do a lot of boondocking. Which is not on the list, maybe a few days here and there ! And with all the led upgrades we made, the batteries should handle that !
__________________
Lovin Our Grey Wolf 26RL !! Jim & Pat
rideandslide is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-22-2016, 10:31 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
Gilleshps's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 166
Where did you see a 120w Zamp portable for $960? Ouch

There's a few Zamp 160's on eBay for $749 free shipping
__________________
Gilleshps is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-23-2016, 06:03 AM   #8
Junior Member
 
Elkoholic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Emmett, Idaho
Posts: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gilleshps View Post
Where did you see a 120w Zamp portable for $960? Ouch

There's a few Zamp 160's on eBay for $749 free shipping
Zamp Solar 120P Charge Kit
https://www.amazon.com/Zamp-Solar-12...solar+portable

I do see that the same Zamp 120W is listed on ebay for $650. That's about 33% lower!

I know that I don't want to mount solar to the top of the trailer as where I camp in the fall it would be useless up there. I park in the shadows of trees with some good Southern exposure a few feet away. Most years at least early in the season it can be hot and sunny which prompts me to use some solar. Second half of the season it can be Rainy and/or snow. I have always carried a 3100i generator and would not leave home with out it. Everything has it's trade offs! Prefer the nasty weather for the hunting and the nice weather for the camping part! That's what makes it interesting I guess!
__________________
Elkoholic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-23-2016, 09:23 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
Gilleshps's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 166
That's getting better, I would call Zamp they will give you a recommended dealer who may be able to beat that price too.

You may want the 15' extension too if you're camped under trees.

Do you hunt in Idaho?
__________________
Gilleshps is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-23-2016, 11:16 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Gilleshps's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 166
Just saw a new listing for the Zamp 120's today for $639 on eBay free shipping.
__________________
Gilleshps is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-24-2016, 02:02 AM   #11
Junior Member
 
Elkoholic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Emmett, Idaho
Posts: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gilleshps View Post
Do you hunt in Idaho?
Yes! Deer & Elk. Getting harder each year for me to clime the mountain. Last year I shot my deer on 10/12 then had a Heart attach on 10/15 flown to hospital for a stent and released on 10/20 was back to Elk Camp on 10/24 and shot my elk on 10/28! guess that is why they call me "Elkoholic"!

I see I did not answer one of your other questions earlier.

"Is it mounted to the battery box? Little black round flush mounted port, with an oval cover over the two male and female holes?"

On my trailer the "Solar Ready Plug" is mounted to the side of the trailer just in front of the door. I thought the wires went into the cabinet by the door. However I looked and there is no wiring inside the upper or lower cabinet. They have to run to the front under the trailer and exit somewhere up front by the battery boxes or hook into the main power line from the batteries to the converter somewhere. I have not checked them out with a multimeter or really dug into anything yet.
__________________
Elkoholic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-24-2016, 11:53 AM   #12
Senior Member
 
Gilleshps's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 166
That's a great hunting trip (aside from the heart attack). A diehard hunter

I wonder if they wired it to your 12v distribution panel? That seems like an odd place for it. If they did, you may want to add another one up front (closer to the batteries) for $10 and some misc items.

Do you go shed hunting too?
__________________
Gilleshps is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2016, 07:06 AM   #13
Junior Member
 
Elkoholic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Emmett, Idaho
Posts: 14
[QUOTE=Gilleshps;3130214]That's a great hunting trip (aside from the heart attack). A diehard hunter

I wonder if they wired it to your 12v distribution panel? That seems like an odd place for it. If they did, you may want to add another one up front (closer to the batteries) for $10 and some misc items.

Gilleshps, I did get it all figured out for my needs. Had to have a shoulder surgery between our trip to the west coast and hunting season (next Month) so I'm a little slow at adding to this!

I bought the Renogy 100 Watt suitcase when they upgraded the controller to a 30 Amp and lowered the price a little. Their 10 foot cable was not enough for my needs so I spent about a hundred dollars for components and made my own connectors, adapters and cables.

The plug on the trailer is wired to a breaker on the trailer tongue on the same line that goes from battery to converter. What I did was two folds. I made an adapter that works with the solar ready plug. Then I also made a setup that would hook straight to battery(s) with a plug outside the battery box. I bought a pair of 40' 8 gauge cables and MC4 connectors from Windy Nation and made (2) 20' extensions less the couple feet that I used for adapters. I tested everything with a Fluke multi meter as well as a Power Analyzer inside the trailer and the Charge Controller on the panel.

Connected the Solar panel into the prewired plug with the first 20' extension and tested the output. Added the second 20' extension and saw about a 1.75 % lose in input to the batteries. Tested this with the adapter I made to hook straight to the batteries and could not tell any difference in input. I let the batteries drain down to about 40 - 50 % and hooked up the panel. They were fully charged in about a day and a half with full sun. Of course I wasn't using any juice in the trailer except the light on the Stereo and other Parasitic drains. With what I run my generator while hunting this is going to work good for me if we get any sun during the month.
__________________
Elkoholic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2016, 08:47 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
Palms's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 173
Hope this helps. You can't (shouldn't) connect a solar panel directly to a battery without a controller. The Zamp panels, like many others, have the appropriately sized controller on the premium priced panels. For other applications you go from the panels to an appropriately sized controller and THEN to the battery bank.

It is a two pole SAE connector. Others use the waterproof MC4 connector. So you would need the panel(s) through an adapter into your Zamp connector, after which you would have to insert a controller prior to connecting to you battery bank. Alternatively, you would go from your panel(s) to an external controller and then to you bank.

Most controllers have two inputs from your panels, two outputs to you bank and two direct connect 12v. Their rates in amps. Your panel will also say the amps generated. It's a bit more involved regarding connection of multiple panels in series or parallel and their effect on voltage, cable size, run, etc. My explanation above is a very simple and simplistic one.

Panels come in a multitude of sizes, capacities and prices. eBay is an acceptable source for many at competitive prices. Name brands are considerably pricier than the no name Chinese ones. For about $1.25 - $1.80/ watt, there are a lot of choices. Some more expensive, some cheaper.

I have 2x90 watt each suitcase high efficiency Chinese panels that cost less than $130 each delivered. A slightly upgraded 30 amp controller was less than $30. You will spend some money on the connectors and cables. Then it's an SAE to the port on the RV wall. You have to protect the controller and could Velcro it to one of the panels if need be.

You can also get 10-20 amp simple controllers on eBay for very little money.

I hope this was of some guidance in making an involved process into as simple as possible. I'll try to answer questions but admit I'm only a hobbyist that really enjoys and uses this technology.
__________________

__________________
Palms is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
solar



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


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
"New Posts," "Today's Posts" and "List Subscriptions" Not Current l1v3fr33ord1 Forum 101 | Announcements | Member Concerns 3 02-23-2016 07:28 AM
Portable Solar "Go Power" vs "Renogy" Cost difference? Superslif Going Green 38 06-05-2015 02:18 PM
rPod 179. "solar ready"? kris-at-home Forest River Owners Forum 2 02-21-2015 06:27 PM
Ready Brake and Ready Brute Elite Dogpatch Toads and Motorhome Related Towing 4 03-24-2013 06:21 PM
Looking for the "Solar Ready" wire on roof src Monaco Owner's Forum 5 08-07-2009 12:59 AM

» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:09 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.