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Open Roads Forum  >  Toy Haulers

 > Need TV and more power without running house generator

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gibbies_03

Bullhead City

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Posted: 02/28/12 11:55pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So, we used the new(to us) 07 WW 2800fsw for a week and it drove me nuts that we couldnt watch TV without running the gene(and the one battery that is in it barely makes it through the night running the heater) I think the battery is prob in bad shape and there is room for 2 so Im going to put Optima BLuetops...We had an 03 Monaco with inverter so I guess I was spoiled. My issue is that there is only room for 2 batteries and I really dont want to have to deal with running solar and dealing with GC2 batteries and all that good stuff. Upon reading the forums it seems that LED lighting will help a lot on the power drain. Also, we live in AZ so I have to use the gene a lot to power the AC anyways, so upon all of this I am thinking that instead of doing inverter and all, that I may just buy another small gene to power stuff and keep batteries charged, along with being able to watch tv...whats your take on this

Golden_HVAC

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Posted: 02/29/12 12:55am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

SOlar might not be such a bad idea nowdays. SunElec.com has a 195 watt 18 volt solar panel for $262.

Your motorhome came with at least a 60 amp charger, the Weekend warrior came with a 30 amp charger, so if you are running a couple of light and the furnace (about 10 amps per hour) the generator is barely going to charge the battery at all, until you upgrade the charging system to 45 - 60 amp range.

If you plan on using AGM batteries, you can mount them inside, they do not gas off like a lead acid battery. I guess if you are buying $250 85 amp hour battery, you would want to protect them.

A pair of 220 amp hour golf cart batteries give a total of 220 amp hours at 12 volts. This should be enough power to get through a 3 night weekend without using the furnace, generator or TV. Yet if watching TV, you might need to also run the generator.

That is why I love my solar system, it recharges in silence! The RV will consume about 35 amp hours per day to run the refrigerator and propane and CO leak detectors. This is about what a 120 watt panel will make in 5 hours of good sunlight. So my two pairs of golf cart batteries (440 amp hours) will last a really long weekend, and by supplementing the power with a couple of 120 watt solar panels, I can watch as much TV as I like - 8 hours a day or more.

And when I did not fully recharge in one day, I installed a pair of 120 watt solar panels in 1999.

Yes I am big on solar panels. Even made my own mounts form 2" angle aluminum in 1999 for those new panels that cost $370 back then.

For a inverter, I use a 300 watt inverter, with #10 wire going to a cigarette lighter, via a 20 amp fuse, it is located near the TV set.

Fred.

VintageRacer

Tatamagouche Nova Scotia

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Posted: 02/29/12 06:17am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The right answer to just watch TV is get a 12v TV or get a little inverter. Easy as pie, either one. I personally use the inverter, I have three or four (for different applications). The furnace (when you say heater, people think space heater running on 120VAC) is indeed a large power draw. Make sure your battery is fully charged each time, add battery capacity, get more blankets, etc. Cold weather, marginally charged or just plain old battery, keeping things too warm, propane furnace fan is indeed a challenge at times. Add more capacity or use less power.

Brian


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garyhartaz

Scottsdale, AZ

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Posted: 02/29/12 06:27am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Solar is the ticket. The install is the only initial hassle but after that, you never have to think about it. Year-round here in most Southwest destinations, the batteries maintain very healthy level with solar. Get an energy efficient tv and yes, go LED for your lighting, it does make a huge difference!

To give you an idea of what my 2 12v batteris do for us in a given day;

Radio - On almost all day long, even if we ride, the dogs like it.
TV - In the evening for a couple of hours and this includes running the Directv receiver too.
Waterpump - flushing, rinsing etc.
Cell phone charging, etc.

Right before bed my voltage panel usually reads 12.2-12.3 volts. In the morning, I fire the genny up to run the coffee maker and let it run for about an hour.


What's work? Oh, playing in the sand in the Southwest!
You can find us hanging in our Jayco T 24 ZX or out riding.


Y-Guy

Tri-Cities, WA

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Posted: 02/29/12 07:56am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Consider all your options; add up the cost of solar (panels, wiring, charger, inverter, new/more batteries) then price out something like a Honda or Yamaha 1000 or 2000 generator, they are very quiet and sip gas. Though they won't run the A/C you already have a generator for that. Then you can compare which will work best for your style of camping.

I'd suggest bookmarking and reading: The 12volt Side of Life


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smkettner

Southern California

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Posted: 02/29/12 12:25pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Even the single battery may not be getting a decent charge after running the generator for dinner and a movie. Post the brand and model of the converter to get opinions on upgrading the charging system. Even two batteries will not help much if they are not getting fully charged.

Yes get some LEDs.

Honda 1000 will keep the battery charged and the tv/dvd operating. Need a 2000 to run the microwave. Although I would sooner get a small inverter. By the time you spend that money on a Honda you could install a few hundred watts of silent solar.


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2oldman

Haugan MT

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Posted: 02/29/12 12:41pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

gibbies_03 wrote:

instead of doing inverter and all, that I may just buy another small gene to power stuff and keep batteries charged, along with being able to watch tv...whats your take on this
My take is that I think it's really annoying to be parked next to someone who has to run a generator for every single need, especially watching TV!! That usually goes into the night and it's not just the noise it's the da** exhaust fumes.

Get an inverter.

dedmiston

Valencia

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Posted: 02/29/12 12:49pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

2oldman wrote:

gibbies_03 wrote:

instead of doing inverter and all, that I may just buy another small gene to power stuff and keep batteries charged, along with being able to watch tv...whats your take on this
My take is that I think it's really annoying to be parked next to someone who has to run a generator for every single need, especially watching TV!! That usually goes into the night and it's not just the noise it's the da** exhaust fumes.

Get an inverter.


You're in the Toy Hauler forum, which generally means boondocking. You won't be able to hear his gen from your camp.


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2oldman

Haugan MT

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Posted: 02/29/12 02:01pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

dedmiston wrote:

You're in the Toy Hauler forum, which generally means boondocking. You won't be able to hear his gen from your camp.
Oh boy, that's a relief. Thanks for pointing that out.

kofire

t-town

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Posted: 02/29/12 06:00pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Get a small cigarette lighter style invertor to run your tv. Then get a heaterbuddy for your heat. Problem solved.

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