For anybody into camping or other popular outdoor activities, a solar panel battery charger makes perfect sense. This type of renewable energy source is great for saving valuable natural resources and can assist in the popular green movement that is sweeping the nation. By having a clean power source available whenever the sun is shining outside, campers don’t have to rely as heavily on the internal storage batteries in the RV. It is convenient for many of the small appliances that are often taken on such an excursion.
Many people who like to go camping stay in their RV’s (recreational vehicles) for much of the time, and they tend to use a great deal of power because of this fact. Also there are a lot of times that a good hookup to an electrical outlet is not available at many of the campgrounds either. Since carrying and running a generator is not only noisy, but quite impractical at times, having an alternate power source would make good sense.
A solar panel system makes a lot of sense for those people who need extra power, but can rely totally on the sun for their needs. This is mainly because it is not always shining enough to make the panels fully operational at all period of the day. Much of the power consumption is done at night when everybody is in the vehicle, so the batteries are not being charged at this time obviously.
There are a great number of new systems that are being offered by manufacturers. A typical one will include a pair of batteries — at least 350 watts apiece. This will provide 350 watt hours per battery, good enough to run some small appliances. They have received special treatment so as to be resistant to most types of weather as well as ultra-violet light. Most of them have safety monitors built in so they won’t overheat, but will operate efficiently as needed.
Of course there are solar panels included too — usually 4 of them each rated at 30 W each for a total of 120 W. Manufacturers are using the latest technology available — the mono-crystalline panels which are high efficiency. There is also an inverter that has plugs for both the U.S. and European style ends, that will provide 400 W continuous power or 800 W peak.
In addition, there are four LED lighting units, which only consume about 3 W for each bulb. These lights can be used for more than 20,000 hours before needing replacement, and use less total energy than a 45 W bulb. The sets can be hung anywhere they are needed, and include an on off switch on a nine foot long cord — perfect for any DC power supply. This is a typical package, and of course there are variations currently being offered which may or may not better suit the needs of the vacationer.
Extra batteries, solar panels and lighting systems are more than readily available if they are needed. Some people go the extra mile and buy enough of these kits to power their entire trailer while on vacation. However, it has to be remembered that they will charge the storage batteries when the sun is out. This is one point that is most commonly forgotten by vacationers who only look at what the output of the solar panels is and not the draw on the battery itself.
There are packages that can provide most of the power needs for a family while on vacation. These have a larger solar panel unit, because there is a greater draw on the storage batteries in these cases. At least one marine battery is needed, with two being the optimal number in this case. These are the deep cycle variety and can be charged and depleted numerous times as part of their regular lifespan. There should also be a minimum of two 120 W solar panels purchased to keep the batteries fully charged. This will make the camping trip that much more enjoyable since there won’t be any power needs to worry about.
A complete solar panel battery solution will be one of the best things that can be purchased for any family who is seriously into the great outdoors.