Go Solar With Your RV
February 13, 2014
Solar power is popping up everywhere: businesses, homes, parking meters, you name it. But did you know you can even use it to provide power for your RV? There's a clear appeal to solar power- it's energy from a limitless source, after all. Here's an overview of how to harness solar power for your RV.
There are two types of solar power kits you can use, and the first is a 'trickle charger'. These are relatively inexpensive, small units that you can set up outside your RV once you reach your destination to keep your batteries charged. This is a great entry-level option to get you used to how solar power is used, without making you too dependent on it. You can find a good trickle charger set-up for anywhere between $100-$300.
If you're looking for a more robust power source, and are perhaps interested in boondocking (living or camping 'off the grid') you can look into the second type of solar power, which is using larger solar cells to gather and store more power, perhaps enough to replace all the work your generator is doing. These systems are more expensive and can run you a few thousand dollars, but may prove more economical in the long run, not to mention the added perk of self-sufficiency.
The first factor in using any solar power is the quality of your solar panels, which will greatly impact how efficiently they gather and hold power. Make sure to research any panels you're interested in and see what the overall consumer opinion is. If a set seems significantly below the average cost, it might not be worth the potential savings.
The second and ultimately most important factor in using solar power is the sun itself. Without direct contact with sunlight, your solar panels will not perform, so keep that in mind when you think of how you'll use them. Do you spend the bulk of your travel time in the Pacific Northwest? You may want to rethink going all in with a solar power system.
If you're in the market for an RV, or perhaps an upgrade, browse our quality selection today!