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Old 03-29-2022, 09:41 PM   #1
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Factory solar package vs solar+inverter

Hello- could use a little help making a decision. Currently we are looking at a 2018 F28RKS equipped with Victron Energy Multi Plus battery charger and inverter, solar charge controller, battery monitor, color control computer, solar combiner box and one Rebel lithium battery. No solar panels installed yet but wiring done or it’s prepped.
Other option is a 2022 F28RKS with the optional two 170 W panels and charge controller. Can upgrade the batteries of course.
If boondocking maybe 3-5 days and want to use indoor lights, charge phones and laptops, maybe make coffee and watch TV at night (hoping in living room) will the factory optioned in solar panels be enough with 12V outlets that come in ORV? We have portable generator but prefer not to use much.
Trying to decide if the upgraded solar package on the used is worth it to us. Thanks in advance for any info!
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Old 03-30-2022, 04:58 AM   #2
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Depends almost entirely on type of fridge.

If you have a DC compressor fridge, you will need at least two Li batteries and 170 watts of panels to camp for 2-3 days with no generator running.

If residential AC fridge that is run from the inverter, you will need 3 or 4 batteries and 340 watts of solar.

If absorption fridge you can probably get by with one battery and l170 watts or no solar.

David
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Old 03-30-2022, 07:55 AM   #3
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I would ask the current owners how they use it.

The system sounds like a good start to me. If you like boondocking, it will grow on you and you can always upgrade the system
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Old 03-30-2022, 09:06 AM   #4
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You were probably OK until you threw in "make coffee". One battery will not support that load, whether it's a brewer or heating water in a microwave. So that feature will move you to upgrade the batteries whether you include solar panels or not. Heating water with an appliance has a steep enough admission price that makes using the stove start to look good. The fridge is a separate question, more an issue of time between charges you're willing to accept.

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Old 03-30-2022, 11:20 AM   #5
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My list of goods to power needs are the same as yours with a 1600 watt cappuccino machine that needs to make 4 shots in the morning, EVERY morning haha. We also have 2 e-bike batteries to charge but I have a Ford factory inverter built in to truck and we charge them one at a time in truck while driving.
I went with:
4-6 volt 220 AH Lead Acid Batteries in Series/Parallel
Victron 3000 Watt multi Charger and Inverter With Charger set to 70 Amp max.
Victron manual control panel in hallway.
Victron Smart Shunt to monitor.
Cerbo GX Hub to link it all together.
Victron DC-DC 30 Amp charger so truck can charge while travelling. Will leave Fridge on AC while on the road.
2-160 watt Panels and 1- 170 Watt panel running through the factory Zamp 30 controller.
I ran it through the mill this week and seems to hold up voltage and have not any outside power source. I do have a built in 3.6 kw Onan if we need it but will likely rarely use it. Hardest Voltage pull is cappo machine pulls voltage to 11.6-11.8 but recovers instantly when done.
Next year we will likely change to Volthium self heated batteries and a Victron Mppt controller for the solar . Right now seems to work fine so if it continues will just do the Volthium and leave the controller. Its nice having the zamp controller for a battery monitor in the bedroom fully visible. It was a expensive modification this month and I did all the work myself.

If I was going to go the full gambit I would factor the rest of the list into either trailer and then my priority would be trailer condition and price. Four years newer might be worth the 2022. Tires size and condition (newer ones have 16" tires) , suspension upgrade to More-Ryde, Progressive Dynamics charger converter instead of WFCO. Front Cap upgrade, Full Queen, 2" receiver on rear bumper , these are only a few of the upgrades that may be on the newer trailer and not on the old.







Quote:
Originally Posted by ChesterBear View Post
Hello- could use a little help making a decision. Currently we are looking at a 2018 F28RKS equipped with Victron Energy Multi Plus battery charger and inverter, solar charge controller, battery monitor, color control computer, solar combiner box and one Rebel lithium battery. No solar panels installed yet but wiring done or it’s prepped.
Other option is a 2022 F28RKS with the optional two 170 W panels and charge controller. Can upgrade the batteries of course.
If boondocking maybe 3-5 days and want to use indoor lights, charge phones and laptops, maybe make coffee and watch TV at night (hoping in living room) will the factory optioned in solar panels be enough with 12V outlets that come in ORV? We have portable generator but prefer not to use much.
Trying to decide if the upgraded solar package on the used is worth it to us. Thanks in advance for any info!
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Old 03-30-2022, 11:58 AM   #6
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Thank you very much for the input! This was my first post and I have found all of the information in this forum very helpful. The used unit has a Norcold absorption fridge. And good point on the other features to pay attention to Telemarc. I have tried to run through the list but now I need to look at the suspension. Thanks again everyone!
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Old 03-30-2022, 12:02 PM   #7
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The victron equipment is top notch in quality and features. The multiplus inverter/charger is a hybrid unit with Power Assist - great feature that augments shire power with battery/inverter power when needed.
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Old 03-30-2022, 02:25 PM   #8
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Yes that seems to be a great feature to limit AC amperage from shore and add what's needed from Batteries. It seems to work flawlessly. The other great thing is with the pass through monitored AC , when we switch from Shore to Generator to Inverter in any order , there is no cut or delay in power so we can just leave the iMac on all the time.
Also don't have to reset all the clocks like Microwave LOL.
Only have to turn that stuff off if we turn inverter off and would only do that if we are away for a extended period of time.
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Old 04-01-2022, 09:12 AM   #9
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We just got back from 2 weeks traveling from SW Washington to Phoenix for Spring Training and back. We have 4 -100 watt Renogy panels wired Series - Parallel through the Zamp box to a Victron 100/30 into 4 GC2 225 batteries. We had all of the power we needed, even on the overcast days. We were off grid all but 5 nights, and the only thing we missed was the AC on a couple of 94 degree days.

However, we like percolated coffee. I have to ask, why would you not use the stove and a percolator instead of using a drip machine or espresso machine? We never used our microwave.
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Old 04-01-2022, 11:14 AM   #10
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Cause I'm a coffee snob ,😇
We only get beans from Bisbee coffee in the U.S. and Peaks Coffee when back in Canada. It takes a 3X double shot Cappachino in the morning to get me going.



Quote:
Originally Posted by BeatCJ View Post
We just got back from 2 weeks traveling from SW Washington to Phoenix for Spring Training and back. We have 4 -100 watt Renogy panels wired Series - Parallel through the Zamp box to a Victron 100/30 into 4 GC2 225 batteries. We had all of the power we needed, even on the overcast days. We were off grid all but 5 nights, and the only thing we missed was the AC on a couple of 94 degree days.

However, we like percolated coffee. I have to ask, why would you not use the stove and a percolator instead of using a drip machine or espresso machine? We never used our microwave.
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Old 04-01-2022, 01:31 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Telemarc View Post
Cause I'm a coffee snob ,��
Ok, I guess I get that. But I think you are an outlier.
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