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Old 06-16-2014, 02:43 PM   #1
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Solar trickle charger

I'm wanting to add a solar trickle charger for both battery banks (chassis/house) for when our coach is in storage, but not completely sure which way to go.

I can go with two simple 5 watt solar panels, one for each battery bank. (Would ~ 260ma (on a sunny day) be enough?)

Another route I was thinking of would be a 15 watt solar panel and two solar charge controllers.

Any suggestions?
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Old 06-16-2014, 03:01 PM   #2
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Im thinking thats way to small...

call these guys... good people.

Welcome to AM Solar_Your RV Solar Specialists since 1987
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Old 06-16-2014, 06:10 PM   #3
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100 to 200 watts, depending on number of batteries, power draws in storage, etc.

RV Solar System Sizing by "Rules of Thumb"
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Old 06-16-2014, 06:48 PM   #4
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I think you guys are thinking I'm wanting to live off the grid!

I'm only looking to trickle charge my battery banks during storage...
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Old 06-16-2014, 07:22 PM   #5
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Solar trickle charger

Quote:
Originally Posted by vsheetz View Post
100 to 200 watts, depending on number of batteries, power draws in storage, etc.

RV Solar System Sizing by "Rules of Thumb"

I agree with vsheetz...... "Bbc5" get at least 100 watts or you will be disappointed in the results. Remember the 100 watt spec is when conditions are PERFECT. Add dirt film on the panel, shade or overcast days, snow, etc and now that 100 watt panel is only putting out 20 watts. Trust me...you want the reserve capacity.

An analogy..... Only takes about 40 horsepower to move your car down the flat highway at a steady 55 MPH..... but you wouldn't want a car with only 40 HP ! The extra 100 HP (or more) is your reserve. :-)
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Old 06-16-2014, 09:35 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbc5 View Post
I think you guys are thinking I'm wanting to live off the grid!

I'm only looking to trickle charge my battery banks during storage...

nope they are right

if you add every thing up in your RV that is pulling power even off it could be 1amp or more

giving what the sun is doing on any giving day and really a 5amp panel is what you really need
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Old 06-16-2014, 09:49 PM   #7
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I use a 100watt Renogy panel and a small charge controller for the 2X12v chassis battery bank. There are days when the chassis batteries are not 100% SOC even with that 100 watt panel. There is no danger in going a little larger. I think you will be glad you did (go to a 100 watt panel for the chassis batteries).

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Old 06-16-2014, 09:51 PM   #8
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Like Redridge, I can endorse AM Solar, too. They are great people there and will give you solid advice. \ken
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Old 08-12-2014, 02:18 PM   #9
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This is an up-date to what I finally did for a solar trickle charger for both battery banks in case anyone else was thinking of doing the same.

The first thing was to add a battery motoring kit. (ME-BMK) I purchased a 105 watt panel from Home Depot, and a dual battery solar charger. I wired up the components, and have been motoring the system for about 4 weeks now. The SOC has stayed between 96% and 99%. The panel is laying flat on the roof.
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Old 08-12-2014, 03:47 PM   #10
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Sounds good! Glad you went with at least 100w solar panel ..... You would have been disappointed with anything smaller.

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Old 08-12-2014, 10:29 PM   #11
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Sounds good! Glad you went with at least 100w solar panel ..... You would have been disappointed with anything smaller.

Thanks for the guidance...
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