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How Much Solar is Needed for My Recreational Vehicle?
2021-03-04



You‘re thinking about switching to a recreational vehicle solar panel and thinking where to begin? Today‘s post will cover what you need to understand to properly compute your solar array and battery bank requirements, so look no further. We‘ll do this in 3 steps that consist of sizing your battery bank, computing your power requirements, and identifying your solar requirements

1. Sizing Your Battery Bank

To estimate your overall energy requirements for a recreational vehicle solar panel, sum the day-to-day usage of all the devices in your recreational vehicle. You can discover typical watt ratings with a fast Google search or by taking a look at the labels on your devices. In the example listed below, an overall of 139 amp hours is required daily.

Amp Hour Computation: Watt-Hours ÷ Volts = Amp Hours 
As discussed above, batteries are rated in watt-hours or amp-hours. For this example, you would require a battery or bank of batteries with a capacity that amounts to more than 139 amp-hours or a way to charge at a rate that amounts to or faster than the rate you are consuming. Keep in mind, these estimations are on an everyday usage basis.

2. Determining Power Requirements

The 2nd step is to identify your optimum power requirements for your recreational vehicle solar panel. From our example above, we determined 139 overall amp hours are needed daily, nevertheless, it is very important to likewise think about the peak and constant discharge current your battery can deal with. Summing the overall watts and dividing by the voltage of your battery will return current in amps if all devices remained in usage at the exact same time: (2,356 watts ÷ 12.8 volts = 184.1 amps).

Current Estimation: Watts ÷ Volts = Current

If your current in amps goes beyond the constant rating of your battery, you need to restrict the number of devices utilized at one time or increase the number of batteries you have actually linked in parallel. If you surpass the peak current rating for longer than advised, the battery‘s tracking system (BMS) will shut the battery down. Keep in mind that a few appliances need extra power to start. This increases the current requirements for a short time. In case of insufficient current, the device won‘t start. For a consistent supply of daily power, you will need a reliable way to replenish what you use. 

3. Figuring Out Solar Requirements

You will create about 30 amps of power for every 100 watts of solar panel you have. Inspect for yourself as you evaluate panels by discovering the output power or maximum current rating, the majority of which will be in the 5.3 to 5.7 amp range. Assuming you have 6 functional hours of sunshine in one day every 100 watts 5.5 amp panel will produce 33 amp-hours each day (5.5 amps x 6 hours = 33 amp hours).

To renew the energy utilized in the example above (139.1 amp hours) you would require a variety of panels amounting to 500 watts. By utilizing 5 100 watt panels that work out to 5 panels x 30 amp hours daily = 150 overall amp hours, you need to cover the 139 amp-hours in the estimate.

These fundamental computations offer the important info needed to size your recreational vehicle solar array. If you have any concerns or would like support picking the finest Melasta batteries for your recreational vehicle requirements, please contact us info@melasta.com