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SolarPowerStore – RV Information

When we look at powering a Recreation Vehicle (RV) for extended stays without having to plug into "shore power" or the use of a noisy generator we suggest a system similar to our small "weekend" Cottage System. You can use fewer Photovoltaic (PV) panels if you have a substantial battery bank.

The first step when considering PV is to ask several questions:
How much power do you need?

A load estimate must be calculated before you can begin
to guess what equipment you need and how much it will
cost. (see Table of Loads)

How much will it cost?

This is entirely dependent upon you (see above)
A good estimate for most Class A Motorhomes or fifthwheels is in the neighbourhood of $1,700 to $4,000 depending on whether you wish to run large loads like microwaves and vacuum cleaners.

You will need:

  • 1 to 4 PV Solar Panels
  • Mounting Hardware $29 and up
  • a controller $99 to $299 (with meters)
  • a battery bank $198 to $1858
  • Perhaps an inverter $200 to $2399
  • Safety Fuses & Disconnects up to $399
  • 12 Volt Pump $129 + up

What are the principle elements of a PV power system related to an RV?

There are five basic blocks to a PV system:

  1. The PV Panels that produce DC electricity.
  2. A Battery Bank for energy storage
  3. A Charge Regulator that protects the batteries.
  4. Meters for monitoring and Safety Disconnects.
  5. Inverter to change DC electricity to AC Power.

We hope that this will help you get started on determining whether or not Solar Power is optimum for your RV.

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