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Installed Solar and Inverter in my Trailer!

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  • Installed Solar and Inverter in my Trailer!

    Hi everyone

    I had solar panels installed on my trailer roof and a 4000 watt inverter installed inside. Just wanted to share the excitement

    The solar panels actually only provide 2600 watts per day ( free energy courtesy of the sunshine, except replacing the batteries after 2-3 years ), but that amounts to 1/3 of my energy usage per day! I plug in at night to charge up the batteries. There are 4 batteries in the trailer.

    In the tool box in the truck bed, I have another bank of 8 batteries powered by a separate inverter. I'll give more details later...

    But here's a pic of my trailer roof top taken from my balcony and you can see the truck which has the aluminum tool boxes which have the batteries and inverter and charger installed inside...
    Attached Files

  • #2
    Way cool!

    What kind of batteries are you using? I know that a few years back I did some research on solar and wind power but was put off by the price of batteries. What do you do about venting the batteries in the toolbox of the truck? Definately post more info...where did you get your panels from...how much it all cost and how it is configured. I love it!

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    • #3
      lol

      Hay that turned out really nice. Those are some beefy pannels up there. are you going to place the rainbow symbol on the side. It is the generally excepted logo for alternate energy. The hand flipping the bird to opec is optional and goes at the end of the rainbow.
      Now you get to have the pleasure of all the poeple telling you it cant be done.Just ignore them. I think you will find those pannels are able to cover the weeks worth of work with, week end chargeing from the land line.

      Comment


      • #4
        Awesome!

        Loks very nice and organized. How often and how do you clean the solar panels? Got any pics of the interior of your trailer? I am curious as to the layout of it since I noticed that you have windows in the rear doors. Do you have an open floorplan?
        Thanks,
        Michael

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        • #5
          That's so cool! How many hours of run time do you get with solar?

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          • #6
            I am sooo excited to see that . Thank you. I want to go mobile and I have been thinking about how I want to do it. I am in Fl so we have endless sun and I was wondering if you could some how put solar panels on a trailer. And then have an inverter also. Details, details, details, we want to know everything!
            Everytime I told someone about doing that, they would say "oh no, can't be done.HA

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            • #7
              goldiflox

              Never listen to someone who say's "cant be done" that just means they can not do it.We would all be living in caves dragging the women folk around by the hair if anyone paid those folks any mind at all. Now you get to walk in on your own accord and while your out can you pick up a six pack and a cheese steak.lol

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              • #8
                Details, details

                Originally posted by Doug View Post
                Hay that turned out really nice. Those are some beefy pannels up there. are you going to place the rainbow symbol on the side. It is the generally excepted logo for alternate energy. The hand flipping the bird to opec is optional and goes at the end of the rainbow.
                Now you get to have the pleasure of all the poeple telling you it cant be done.Just ignore them. I think you will find those pannels are able to cover the weeks worth of work with, week end chargeing from the land line.
                Heehee Doug, where can I get one of those rainbow decals?! :-P to OPEC, haha.

                OK everyone, here are the details ...

                These solar panels are (4)130 watt Kyocera panels ... so ... 130 watts x 4 panels x 5 hours of sunshine per day = ~2600 watts per day that the panels provide...

                Here's a rough estimate of watts I use per appointment (average)...

                HydroSurge = 5amps x 110AC for 5 minutes = 45 watts
                3.3 GPM Water Pump = 1amp x 110AC for 5 minutes = 9 watts
                Hanvey Gold Dryer = 10.5 amps x 110AC for 20 minutes = 385 watts
                Handheld Blow Dryer = 1800 amps x 110AC for 5 minutes = 150 watts
                Clipper iVac = 2amps x 110AC for 10 minutes = 37 watts
                Taxi Vac = 8amps x 110AC for 10 minutes = 146 watts
                Small Blower Fan = 3amps x 110AC for 20 minutes = 110 watts (hot days)
                Dremel Charger = 20 watts
                Chromado Charger = 20 watts ...

                Total Watts per dog ( small-med dog with clip ) = 935 watts per dog...or...
                935 watts x 6 appointments = 5610 watts per day approximately

                Total Watts per dog ( med-large dog ) = 1100-1200 watts per dog...or...
                1200 watts x 6 appointments = 7200 watts per day

                (I don't need an air conditioner because I have plenty of ventilation with two windows, 2 rear doors, side door and 2 roof fan vents so my watt consumption per day is lower than others with air conditioning)
                (Goldens and Big Hairys of course take more dryer time, so I added 10-15 minutes more or about 200 watts more per dog)

                (Winter time, you will need more time and watt consumption to dry the dogs and possibly heat the trailer.)

                (I have fluorescent lights but I don't use them because I have plenty of light in my trailer and have 12volt halogens, but you may need to add watt consumption for your lights) ...

                My 6 gallon electric hot water heater will be heated over night plugged into my home and I will fill my fresh water tank with warm water first thing in the morning so the first 3 dogs will have warm water... I will have to flip on my generator for 15 minutes halfway through the day to heat my hot water for the next 3 dogs, so I won't use the inverter for the hot water.
                ---------------------------------------------------
                INFORMATION ON BATTERIES AND WATTS...

                (4) 6 volt 220 amp hour batteries in trailer (67 lbs each) wired in series to create 24 volt 220ah battery bank = 24volts x 220ah = 5280Watts Total in trailer

                (8) 6 volt 220 amp hour batteries in tool box in truck bed wired series/parallel to create 12 volt 880ah battery bank = 12volts x 880ah = 10,560Watts Total in Truck Bed

                Both Battery Banks Combined = 5,280Watts + 10,560Watts = 15,840Watts

                You can only use 50% at most of a battery bank's watts because you can't discharge the battery bank any further than that or you'll be ruining them.

                50% of the "Solar Panel Trailer Battery Bank" = 5280Watts x 50%= 2640Watts available for use

                50% of the "Truck Bed Battery Bank" = 10,560Watts x 50%= 5280Watts available for use

                Combined Battery Banks Watts Available for use = 7920Watts

                Shwew, a lot of info I know, but maybe this can help some of you figure out your watts per dog per day to see how an inverter can help you save fuel costs when GAS PRICES SOAR EVEN MORE!

                -------------------------------------------------------------------
                -------------------------------------------------------------------
                PART 2

                I've had this trailer for 4 years now using a 5500 Onan LP Generator which now has 5000 hours on it.

                COSTS OF RUNNING GENERATOR PER YEAR OVER 4 YEARS

                Generator New Cost = $4000 = ~ $1000 per year ... (possible replacement @ 5000 hours or less for most)
                LP Fuel Cost per year = ~ $3000
                Generator Maintenance per year = $300 (i.e. oil change, filters, spark plugs, etc)

                AVERAGE COST PER YEAR FOR GENERATOR = $4300

                -----------------------------------

                POSSIBLE COST TO RUN INVERTER PER YEAR (Occasional generator assist)

                NEW XANTREX RS3000 INVERTER W CHARGER = $1500

                12 AGM (Golf Cart Deep Cycle Batteries) = $2400(replace @2.5 years?)
                Battery Interconnect/ Inverter Cables (custom soldered) = $300
                2 Aluminum Tool Boxes = $450
                Plug in @ Night to recharge batteries per year (guessing only) =$400

                INVERTER START-UP COSTS = $4650
                MY ESTIMATES TO RUN INVERTER PER YEAR = $1560

                ------------------------

                SAVINGS FROM using INVERTER INSTEAD OF GENERATOR = $2740 per year savings ...
                (In 2.5 years, savings will pay for my solar kit with batteries and professional installation, and 1 more year of savings will pay for the truck inverter kit, batteries and installation, after that, savings in my pocket)

                NOTE: Doug will need to tell you his costs over the years as I am just starting... his costs are much lower because his batteries cost much less.
                Doug doesn't like AGM batteries and prefers wet cell so he can monitor and refill his batteries ... I didn't want to worry about maintenance on wet cell, so I opted to pay the steeper price on AGMs ... no matter what, I'm still saving compared to the costs of running a generator, but I'm spending more compared to Doug or Curtis. Doug advised me not to get AGMs but I wanted to do my own thing and not have to worry about gases and such, even though he told me not to worry, I know me and I'm a worrier so I paid extra for the AGMs not to worry as much ... they won't last as long as Doug's wet cells, but I'm okay with that for now because I'm still saving money

                NOTE: These costs don't include the Solar Panels System, my Solar Installation started out as a separate personal project because I wanted to go camping without turning my generator on, and I plan on going totally solar and off grid once I own property and a house. Anyone can private message me for the solar costs and companies I purchased from ... glad to help

                ( or if it's ok, wholesalesolar dot com - look up King of the Road RV Package )

                I could have put all the batteries in the trailer to have one large 12 battery bank if I didn't have the large 5500 Onan generator already taking up room ... You could design your own trailer to have all the batteries in a compartment where a generator would normally fit if you made room. You could always put a back up Yamaha 3000 watt generator in the truck bed (only $1600 and they're very reliable and quiet!)


                PS - There are pictures of the inside of my trailer on my website in my profile ... it doesn't show the inverter setup yet though, but batteries are inside lower cabinets and inverter is right next to the grey AC Breaker box.

                PPS- TinksDad - the aluminum tool boxes are vented with typical vents that are used for battery boxes in RVs ( I'll take a picture to show you )
                Last edited by marieski; 09-05-07, 08:22 AM. Reason: Recalculated HydroSurge amps to 5 amps instead of 11 amps per Curtis' help

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                • #9
                  cool I want to learn more that would be a cool idea for me to do when I get a trailer
                  Let us know who did it for you!

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                  • #10
                    so how can it be done?

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                    • #11
                      wow, that is just the greatest!

                      I think you'll be nice and happy with your new system.

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                      • #12
                        It looks great. I do have some questions. Do you charge at night to fully charge your batteries? Can you share how much the panels cost? Do you have a solor charger wired to charge? How did you attach the panels to the roof? How much do the panels weigh?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Before you put that rainbow on you trailer...

                          Keep in mind that rainbow mains more than energy. I would go with something that means you are a "Greener" unit.
                          Since you may have your phone number on the side of the trailer, the Rainbow might get you calls you want or don't want from someone that has nothing to do with grooming.

                          Hmmmmm... anyone care to explain it. It is a sensitive subject for some people so I'll leave it at that.

                          Curtis (who is a bit red faced right now)

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                          • #14
                            Are you sure your Hydrosurge is pulling 11 amps.

                            Marieski,

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                            • #15
                              Are you sure your Hydrosurge is pulling 11 amps.

                              Marieski,
                              Are you sure your Hydrosurge is pulling 11 amps? It should be pulling less than 5 amps at 120 volt AC. Same for the bathing beauty. Just curious?

                              Curtis

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