Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Solar while the RV is in Storage
Open Roads Forum Already a member? Login here.   If not, Register Today!  |  Help

Newest  |  Active  |  Popular  |  RVing FAQ Forum Rules  |  Forum Posting Help and Support  |  Contact  

Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in Class A Motorhomes

Open Roads Forum  >  Class A Motorhomes  >  All

 > Solar while the RV is in Storage

Reply to Topic  |  Subscribe  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 2  
Prev
dufferdj

Colorado/Arizona

Full Member

Joined: 07/27/2008

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 12/21/19 09:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks to all for your replies thus far. I know that I need new batteries so I'm trying to figure out what to do so that the new ones will last as long as possible.
At the end of a sunny day after the sun is low in the sky, so that I'm not really getting any more solar gain, my Blue Sky 3000i Solar Boost controller shows 13.0 with the Float and Absorption lights lit up. The next morning before sunrise it was reading 12.1. Nothing was being used in the RV as it was in the storage lot --- no TV. no lights, no heat --- no nothing other than the random draws from the house electronics.
Last night, after a sunny day the controller showed a reading of 13.0 F/Ab. I turned the disconnect switches off on both the house and chassis battery banks. Checked them again this morning prior to sunrise and got a reading on the controller of 12.7/6.
This info seems to tell me that by disconnecting the battery banks, the voltage drops significantly less than when leaving them connected.
Once I install new batteries I'm sure these stats will change. But from what you can see, would I be better off just leaving the batteries connected to the solar panels 24/7, or disconnect the battery bank and just reconnect it one sunny day a week? Which way will extend the life of the new batteries or does it really make a difference ?

wolfe10

Texas

Senior Member

Joined: 10/08/2000

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 12/21/19 09:54am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Again, either of two things could cause this:

Dead batteries-- where even a small draw will discharge them. The batteries are only "storing" a small amount of their design amp-hrs.

Higher amp draw what would take down even a good battery bank.

If you know the batteries are bad, replace and THEN evaluate.

Another option is to use an ammeter to determine draw.


Brett Wolfe
Ex: 2003 Alpine 38'FDDS
Ex: 1997 Safari 35'
Ex: 1993 Foretravel U240


FMCA Forum: www.community.fmca.com/index

Diesel RV Club:http://www.dieselrvclub.org/

time2roll

Southern California

Senior Member

Joined: 03/21/2005

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member


Posted: 12/21/19 10:21am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

13.0 to 12.1 is a significant drop while connected. Either the battery is not full or they are shot. What is the programmed peak absorption/bulk voltage? How cold is it?

13.0 down to 12.65 while disconnected from the RV seems to be in good shape. Although the batteries could still be weak.

13.0 is a bit low for a float voltage in Winter. Is that the programmed voltage or is that late in the day with minimal solar power drifting down to sunset?

Does the controller support temperature compensation?

For now I would let the batteries set with the disconnect switch remaining in the disconnected (off) position. Need to figure out the programmed voltages before you get new batteries.

How many watts are the panels rated?


2001 F150 SuperCrew
2006 Keystone Springdale 249FWBHLS
675w Solar pictures back up

RLS7201

Beautyful Downtown Gladstone, MO

Senior Member

Joined: 10/26/2002

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 12/21/19 05:22pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I see no difference in leaving the solar connected or leaving your coach plugged in all the time. If both are smart charging systems, you're good to go.

Richard


95 Bounder 32H F53
460/528 stroker
Web Master
MWPSchooners.com
First brake job
1941 Hudson


wolfe10

Texas

Senior Member

Joined: 10/08/2000

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 12/21/19 09:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

RLS7201 wrote:

I see no difference in leaving the solar connected or leaving your coach plugged in all the time. If both are smart charging systems, you're good to go.

Richard


I agree. Assuming solar of sufficient size, snow kept off it, smart controller, etc. Expect that you may have 3-4 cloudy days in a row when sizing the solar panels.

CA Traveler

The Western States

Senior Member

Joined: 01/03/2004

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 12/21/19 10:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

wolfe10 wrote:

RLS7201 wrote:

I see no difference in leaving the solar connected or leaving your coach plugged in all the time. If both are smart charging systems, you're good to go.

Richard


I agree. Assuming solar of sufficient size, snow kept off it, smart controller, etc. Expect that you may have 3-4 cloudy days in a row when sizing the solar panels.
I disagree. Utility power maintains the float charge 24/7 including night unlike solar with constantly changing light.


2009 Holiday Rambler 42' Scepter with ISL 400 Cummins
750 Watts Solar Morningstar MPPT 60 Controller
2014 Grand Cherokee Overland

Bob


wolfe10

Texas

Senior Member

Joined: 10/08/2000

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 12/22/19 07:48am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I certainly have no problem with shore power plugged in 24/7 with a smart charger or smart inverter charger, but many thousands of motorhomes use solar to maintain battery charge in storage with no ill effects.

If you have access to shore power where you store, excellent. If not, solar is a good "plan B".

All I could afford

North jersey

Senior Member

Joined: 10/27/2014

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 12/22/19 11:52am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If we are talking about maintaining charge while in storage, a couple of cloudy days in a row wouldn’t be anything to worry about with small solar setup. It would be a problem boondocking!


1999 R-Vision Trail Light B17 hybrid
2006 Explorer Eddie Bauer
2002 Xterra rollin’ on 33’s
1993 Chevy Z24 Convertible
Lives in garage 71,000 miles

dufferdj

Colorado/Arizona

Full Member

Joined: 07/27/2008

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 12/23/19 08:00pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks to all of you that replied and the many questions and suggestions that have been made. After reviewing your various questions I tried disconnecting the battery bank. Since the solar panels (400W) are wired directly through the Blue Sky Solar Boost 3000i they are keeping the batteries fully charged even though we had a cloudy day today. Since I have the battery bank disconnected ,the draw throughout the night should be minimal. So at this point I believe that this condition should be best for the life of these batteries and the new ones I will be installing soon. Thanks again.

BUB1988

Temple Terrace Florida

Full Member

Joined: 08/27/2009

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 01/04/20 03:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So while we had our RV in storage we kept it on solar to keep the batteries charged. We have 4 - 12 V batteries, 2 coach and 2 chassis. The solar panel was only 100W and we never had an issue. We live in Florida and it never was in storage for over 6 -8 weeks at time.

Reply to Topic  |  Subscribe  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 2  
Prev

Open Roads Forum  >  Class A Motorhomes  >  All

 > Solar while the RV is in Storage
Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in Class A Motorhomes


New posts No new posts
Closed, new posts Closed, no new posts
Moved, new posts Moved, no new posts

Adjust text size:




© 2020 CWI, Inc. © 2020 Good Sam Enterprises, LLC. All Rights Reserved.