Solar powered trailer

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    After about a year and a half of working and slowly evolving my solar power system, I would like to share what I have come up with. Hopefully it will help you if you are looking to put solar power in a travel trailer. I started with the idea of using a 100 watt solar panel and a 10 amp charge controller to use as a battery charger for my 25 foot hunting trailer because we were in an undeveloped site. The next year I thought about upping the power to 200 watts to try and power the trailer without using the generator (it’s old and kind of loud). I got a 2300 watt inverter and new charge controller (30 amp) because the previous one wouldn’t handle 2 panels. The idea worked, sort of, It turns out I didn’t have the battery storage or enough wattage. I wanted to be able to run the coffee pot in the morning (worked) and have a crock pot going so dinner would be done when we got back (didn’t work).
    This year I got two more 100 watt panels and decided to mount them to the roof of my trailer. I also changed my battery from a 12 volt deep cycle to four 6 volt golf cart batteries wired in series and parallel. I decided to go with the golf cart batteries because they are designed to give power over time and recharge quickly. By doing this I stayed with a 12 volt system because everything in the trailer is 12 volts, but increased my storage capacity dramatically. I also spoke to a guy I met who installs solar systems who said that 400 watts should power everything but the AC. It will be field tested in 2 weeks.

    The equipment that I got, I purchased from Windy Nations on EBay. If you look around there are a number of venders, so shop for good prices. You can probably save a couple hundred bucks if you think about what you want in the end instead of being like me and having upgrade parts. My system is;
    4 x 100 watt solar panels
    1 x 30 amp pwm charge controller (I would probably get a 60 amp but 30 will just cover the current
    1 x 2300 watt inverter (larger than what I need but I got a great price on it)

    I added 2 30 amp inline circuit breakers, one on the positive lead between the panels and the charge controller and one between the controller and the batteries. I put a 200 amp fuse between the batteries and the inverter. I used electrical rails to mount the panels to the roof and drilled additional points on the back of the panel frames so I have 4 points of contact on each side of the panel. I used 4” lag bolts to attach the rails to the top of the trailer and it sits flat so the air won’t get underneath and pull them off. I am also including a couple links that I thought were really helpful in the final design of my system. I hope this helps.

    On Youtube – The Tinhat Ranch 6 video series

    This is just a really badass set up I found

    I wanted to include pictures, but couldn’t figure out how to post them. Sorry

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