Rough rule of thumb, for every AH you have at 12V, you need at least 1 to 1.5 watts of solar panel to charge it. Since you have 440AH in storage capacity in your batteries, you'll need about 440 to 660 watts of solar panel to get the job done.
I'm a bargain hunter/cheapskate!
Co worker of mine is talking about getting 2 powerhouse generators and parallel them together when he needs more power. He rec I get a powerhouse 1k and 2k that way I could use only the 1k unless I needed the 13500 ac.
I found a powerhouse 2000xi or something like that on eBay. Brand new in the box. I confirmed I could parallel it and a 1k together and ended up winning it for just less than 350 shipped.
I got it and It fired firght up. Boy is this thing loud. It's not an old school lawnmower sounding generator, but I was very disappointed. Also found out this model will not parallel and if it did they would need to be matching generators.
Sold it to a friend who wanted it for what I had in it.
Went to a buddies house who has a Honda eu3000 to hear it run. Omg, that thing is quiet! As soon as I left I contacted a guy I've been watching on CL who was selling a new never been run eu2000i for $700 and made a deal for $550 yesterday.
I will say this, it's quieter than the powerhouse, but not by a whole lot. I am very disappointed.
I cannot afford an eu3000 and know I will need another eu2000 to run my ac.
Does anybody else feel this way about the eu2000?
I feel that the the eu3000 is as quiet as an air conditioning unit and would be of no concern to most neighbors at a campground, but the 2000 is drastically louder than the 3000 and the powerhouse, forget about it!
Maybe I was just expecting too much?
If your Honda Eu2000i is loud... clean out the cr*p in the muffler, or don't run is so close to max power... get a second Eu2000i and pair it, to lessen the loads on both generators.
It's hard when you have champagne tastes with only a beer budget that you want to work with.
Here is the graph. I left out the reading at 10 hours, but by 10 hours the charge rate was under 1.5 which is what lifeline considered fully charged. I'll do a brief write-up and post a link.
According to specs on that battery, that is an AGM type of battery. Supposedly a lot less internal resistance when charging AGM's versus LA open vented. MexicoWanderer would know.
You have a lot of amp hour battery capacity to the amps your charge controller is capable of, an indication that the charge controller will hold for a longer period in bulk charge mode. That and less internal resistance from the battery, being of AGM construction.
Still, impressive how it holds in bulk charge mode for 2 hours or so.
Too much resistance from skinny wiring seems to kick the PD series of charge controllers out of bulk mode earlier than necessary.
Small scale here.... A T1275 Trojan. Rated 150 AH... at 50% SOC, paired with a PD9245, with 6 feet of 8 gauge wire to the lugs on the battery terminal.
Who here would care to estimate charging time to a 90% SOC, or time it takes to get to 14.4V and bump the wizard out of bulk mode and into absorption mode, and time to put the battery instead on a 120W 7 Amp PWM bulk 15.0V portable solar panel?
Should I go to a heavier gauge wire from the PD 9245 to the battery? Voltage loss?
OK but first of all, did you get another T-1275 that works? ISTR you got one or two used ones for free but they were duds.
also can't answer any of those questions without knowing what amps you get at first starting at 50%. After that it is easy--it is all in the ugly graph. Everything is proportional so just use 150 instead of 220
I did some serious sessions of Equalizing, the proper MexicanWanderer way, seasoned them a little, and one of them came back nicely within 10 points of all the other cells at 1.270, the rest 1.280. Not perfect, but good enough for a couple more years of what I have planned for it. Actual use in May or June on a longer trip will be more telling, but my gut feel is that with a Pd 9245 for an hour in the morning, and the close to 7 amp solar panel I have with bulk V set at 15.1V, so as to not fry any refrig circuit boards, I should be golden. My daily usage, maximum, I don't see as perhaps ever being over 50 or 60 amps, well maybe if I run the fan on the heater, but even then... I'd prefer a radiant ceramic lpg heater, like RJ has, no motor required.
Ideally, I'd to just only have to run the gen on cloudy days, or for the microwave. Keep in mind, 21 feet, and one person in it doing the conservation thing goes a long ways to keeping the power consumption down. Just want to be able to do the solar thing only too, come winter time with short days.
Less expensive to have a solar panel walk away than a honda generator, if I'm going to have to take a loss. Don't want permanent, don't know how long I will keep the 21 footer I have.
I disconnect the battery when my travel trailer is not in use. Then I give it a 100% state of charge before putting into storage, usually with taking the battery up to near 16.0V briefly or the specific gravity above 1.270, with an equalization charge, and call it good. Usually good for 3 or 4 months or more.
How you treat your batteries camping and during storage, has a huge effect on the life of your batteries.
Mixing different battery construction types, golf cart batteries, with a car battery, with different chemistries and amp hours per battery, is a lot like pairing a Honda Eu2000i to a Honda Eu1000i, to run something with a heavy amp load, like a 13.5k AC.
It can be done, but no one recommends it, and you probably shouldn't do it.
Your yellow line is correct.
You mean the water level should be at the bottom where the yellow ring is at???
yes, at the bottom, where the yellow ring is at, just BELOW where the green portion of the battery top stops.
If you have doubts, go to somewhere where they sell new batteries, and pop the tops and have a look inside at what the factory level is at.
Solar blvd has affordable, usable products and it shows in their sales. I was ready to downsize to the 160w kit when they first came out but at that time they couldn't keep those in stock either. The smaller kits seem popular with the pup up crowd too. I started a thread on PUX for Black Friday and it's still going now.
I also suggest people look at windynation and eco-worthy mainly for their 200w kits for $300. Not as portable but it takes minutes to drill and rivet in a few hinges.
Do you have a link to that Black Friday post?
Yes and unfortunately the fan starts before or the same time as the compressor.
When will they figure out it is ok to run the compressor ten seconds before the fan kicks on.
Or has this changed? I installed a new Dometic control box/digital thermostat a year ago and it starts the blower fan first by design.Can this Dometic digital thermostat be used on the garden-variety, Dometic 13,500 BTU, non-ducted, rooftop units? Got a part number? All the units I've seen, the fan runs constantly, 24/7. It would be awesome to have the fan turn off with the compressor.
I've a standard 2 speed Dometic with the square box. There are 3 settings for the fan. AUtomatic, High, and Low. Automatic will run in the low fan setting it the thermostat setting is within 5* of the actual air temp inside, and if over 5*, it will start in the High setting.
Since I mostly run my 13.5 on the generators, I almost always use the low setting, it especially seems to help during the first AC start up of the day, which draws unusually hard on the pair of Eu2000i's, unless nothing else is running at all on the travel trailer. By all means, use propane, not electricity to heat your water, and perhaps turn the AC off when running the microwave, if you are heating something up for lunch or dinner.
Here' some specs (BTU/Compressor Amps/Fan Amps/Inrush-LRA):
Dometic (standard unit) 13,500/12.4/2.5/63
Total amps: 14.9
Colman Mach (standard unit) 13,500/11.9/3.4/63
Total amps: 15.3
Dometic High Efficiency 13,500/8.6/2.5/50
Total amps: 11.1
Coleman Mach 3 PS 13,500/8.3/2.9/58.4
Total amps: 11.2
Once started these high efficiency units use about 3-4 amps less current than the standard units. The Dometic has a respectable 13 amp (63 to 50) reduction in inrush/LRA/startup current. A very good thing for smaller generators.
Did notice the Coleman Mach 3 PS had much less reduction in inrush/LRA/startup current vs. their standard unit. Wonder why? Quite a few small generators will never have the opportunity to see the reduced steady current demands because they'll never get the past the higher inrush/LRA/startup current.
Typically these high efficiency units can be purchased for $650-$750. Purchasing one of these might be a better investment vs. buying a larger generator--say, one EU2000 vs. two EU2000i's--$1000 vs. $2100 :)
Do you have a part number from Dometic for the high efficiency model? Are you sure it's a 13.5k or an 11.5k A/C unit?
IMO instead of wasting money on solar for provincial park off-grid "weekend" camping, get more battery bank, a serious battery charger, and a quiet inverter generator to run that ...
There is no such thing as a "quiet inverter generator". Sellers shamelessly understate the noise levels, promising under 55 db when in reality it's over 70 db within 10ft distance.
OTH, with more battery bank they might need no charging at all, for a short stay. 225 AH that they have now, is enough for 40-50 hours of camping with no sources of charging, considering 35-50 AH that they consume daily, estimated from they said. Coupled with 200W portable solar, or even 160W, they should be alright for as long as there is any sun.
Still, when the weekend trip is over, they will still need to top off all the batteries with a full charge to 16.0V, to equalize the cell charges, before putting away in storage. Or at least equalize every 10 to 12 days of camping.
I just got off the phone with Solar Blvd, and it appears that they have a couple of large orders in route for 100 Watt portable folding solar panels with controllers, and also 120 Watt portable folding solar panels.
Seems some of my posts might have had an effect on them selling out so quickly this spring.
Be that as it may, despite the items not showing online currently, the person I spoke with said that they are on back order, and that if you call them and place an order, they will put you at the front of the line for delivery or pickup when the product arrives. I was told they would probably arrive last week of April or fist week of May, just in time for Memorial Day weekend.
So if you have questions... call them at (951) 279-8100 M-F 9-6 pacific time. Maybe mention you saw it on RV.net.
Quite a few member have had very good experiences with purchases of solar panel equipment at Solar Blvd, with fair competitive pricing for our applications.
You may find that your generators don't load share well and one may consume more fuel than the other. There have been post here in the past and I have seen that with my Honda Eu2000s and EU 1000s.
This... has happened to me. One of my eu2000i's puts out 127.8V, the other puts out 123.3V. The one with the higher voltage pulls more load and works harder, when paired. Measured with a Kill a Watt at the outlets on each generator.
Hey thanks for all the links and info and input.
While I'll be occasionally busting out the turkey baster Hydro, and reprogramming the solar to do mid to upper 15's eq cycle, that is about as much effort/nursing as I will be putting into this 31. I don't have a load tester capable of Mex's regimen.
It does appear that only one EQ charge every 30 cycles is too few though. That 15.3v recommended US battery 'finishing' charge keeps echoing in the background. I just do not want to forget to turn a switch and expose the $$$ AGM to that voltage. Nice to have that option though.
Since achieving 1.280 I have not taken more than 18 A/h from the battery overnight as I've been house sitting multiple pets while some neighbors are out spring breaking. Plenty of sun the next day. 14.6v has been reached by 10 am. It has not dropped below 12.4v under fridge and fan loads and is 12.6v every time I have bothered to look at other times overnight. I don't really have any basis for comparison for this reduced overnight load after this latest EQ cycle.
I think next eq cycle will be 16 rather than 15.5. I will try to dip the hydro and see how quickly the SG declines despite 4+ hours of 14.5+ per day and report back.
My previous sets of 2 27 Crowns would have required more water by this point.
If you're using the 31 LA open cell every day and drawing it down a bit, folks around here recommend the 16v treatment, completely disconnected from everything else, once every 12-14 days. Due to Mexwanders comment about the design of the group 31 being somewhat problematic, I'd tend to do it more frequently, perhaps every 10 days. Or not... depends what your time is worth, and your discretionary income to buy new batteries more frequently, or less.
Make no mistake about it, a travel trailer has far more issues with weight distribution than a 5th wheel or a motor home. That ball and hitch act constantly like a pivot point on the back end of the tow vehicle. Proper loading and hitch weight are far more critical with a travel trailer than the 5th wheel or motorhome or class C. The last thing you want is a lot of weight on the back end of a travel trailer, it provides much more moment of arm leverage against the opposite side of the wheels, at the trailer hitch.