Everything You Need To Know About Using RV Solar Panels

July 26, 2022

With a few simple math equations, you can determine how long your Fleetwood RV’s solar battery bank will last, as well as how long it will take to recharge the battery you’ve used.

Having a solar system on your Fleetwood RV allows you to sit back and relax while nature does the work of recharging your RV’s battery. In the video below, we answer a few basic questions about your Fleetwood’s solar system and teach you a few tricks to knowing how much time and power it can provide you.

How does your RV’s solar power work?
No matter what type of solar panels you have on our Fleetwood RV, all power generated by your solar system will go to your house batteries first. Once the solar system determines that your house batteries are sufficiently charged, it will then direct some of that power to the chassis battery.

How long will my RV’s solar battery bank last?
To determine how long your RV’s solar battery bank will last, we use an easy math equation
(start watching at the 2:06 mark) that involves:

  • identifying your batteries’ amp hours
  • wiring them in series and parallel
  • converting that final number to watt hours since most products that use your battery power are measured in wattage
  • establishing a safe usage range that won’t damage your batteries

Once you’ve established this total watt hours number, divide into it using the wattage amounts from the lights, appliances, and other RV amenities you’ll be using. This will tell you exactly how long your solar battery bank will last.

How long will it take to recharge my battery bank using my solar panels?
To determine how long it will take to recharge your RV’s battery bank using your solar system, we use another simple calculation (start watching at the 6:12 mark) that involves:

  • taking the total watt hours determined in the previous equation
  • identifying the watt hours that need recharging
  • multiplying that second number by .7 (because solar panels generally only output at 70% of their max rating)

The only wildcard in these calculations? Whether or not there’s enough sunlight to do the work!

These are just a few basic but helpful ways to get the most out of your Fleetwood RV’s solar system. For a more detailed explanation or help with any electrical work on your RV, we strongly recommend consulting a certified electrician at a dealership near you.

Schedule an appointment with an expert today!

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