However, the fridges don’t behave that way – they run at that power to cool the fridge down but after that they consume much less power to maintain that temperature. Campervan fridges are rated at around 40w, so with a 12v battery that equates to around 3.3A per hour. Using the example above, this 100w solar panel is generating 3.0A – this is Amps so is an instantaneous measure. If this is how you tend to holiday in the van then spending hours calculating your loads etc isn’t necessary. Some people install our standard Lensun 50W, 60W, 80W and 100W Semi-flexible solar panels directly. What size solar panel for a caravan? There are 100, 170, 200, 225, 265, 300, 335, and 360 watt solar panels. What power do you have to start with? I missed a few, but the point is, there are MANY different sizes of solar panels on the market and 3, 100 watt solar panels will have the same output as a single 300 watt solar panel. Continue Reading . Get our FREE guide "How To Get The Most From Your Solar Panel" plus the latest SelectSolar news via email. Having solar power aboard your campervan is a great way to create electricity. An 80w solar panel kit is adequate for most applications in the summer months but the 120w brings extra reliability. The choices and the technology seem a little confusing at first and my advice is to speak to someone first who can advise you on your situation but don’t get sucked into a debate over what power this accessory or that inverter uses and confuse yourself with numbers. What in your van needs powering? We all have lights in the van and increasingly these are moving over to LED – these draw hardly any current (LED light strips for example draw around 2.9W per foot) so you can dismiss them from your equations – a 6 foot light string will consume less than 1.5A. Ultra-lightweight design. Free postage. We're open and remain available to help and support our customers. When shopping for solar panels you will see these rated in Watts i.e. You might find that your solar panel needs are too big or too expensive once you run the numbers. A typical 14.72-volt solar panel has 32 solar cells. Menu. Panel size is important for obtaining the correct wattage – it needs to be the right size in order to supply the right amount of power for your needs. 24W Solar Panel With Triple Usb Ports By RAVPower. they are also easy to install into your van set-up as some come with built in controllers and simply require you to connect them to the battery – so ease of use is to be considered. 14 sold. 0800 14 88 400 . Amps is a unit of power, which is an instantaneous measure. With a campervan being the sole form of transport that we have when away on holiday – we are unlikely to be static on a pitch for a number of days. Photons from the sun collide with solar cells inside a solar panel. For a larger motorhome or a narrowboat consider installing 200 watts. £295.00. No more need for electric hook-ups - camp in the pretty spots! There are several factors to consider and I promise none of them involve you having to get the calculator out. 80Ah is often the highest the smaller vans can go with limited space in the leisure battery area but some of the home builds can cope with a bigger 110Ah or even 2 batteries linked together. Solar panels also produce power in the winter unless it is very overcast. The jargon and number surrounding solar panels can be a little confusing. All rights reserved. This 100W 12V mobilehome solar panel charging up outfit is complete for a camper, van, campervan, boat, or perhaps virtually any off-grid electrical power, lighting or even back up arrangement using one or maybe a couple of 12V batteries. Renogy 50 Watt Flexible Camping Solar Panel. Use the Ready Reckoner. Select which online quote to retrieve. 400W Solar Panel Campervan Mercedes Sprinter & VW Crafter Camper Boat Off-Grid. First of all, I took advice. To maximise the solar output we always fit a 100 watt solar panel. Equally, there are some of us who after a period of ‘Off-Grid’ lifestyle may decide to stay at a campsite with facilities to empty the waste water, top up the fresh water, shower or entertain the kids etc. Camper Van Electrical Design . Solar panels sold in the UK will be marked with a power rating, which shows the power the panel will produce under prescribed standard test conditions (also known as STC). There are standard size flexible solar panels in our UK, USA, DE and AU warehouse. Or…how big are yours? What size solar panel do I need for my camper van, How to wire a microswitch tap and water pump, Simply Lithium – Victron SuperPack Lithium Batteries (LiFePO4), 12v Battery Monitors and Monitoring Solutions from Victron Energy, Off-Grid Recipe – Ham Hock Ploughman’s & Chutney Dressing, How to install a split charge relay into a VW T25. In the summer months, the right size and quality of panel will produce sufficient amps to run your fridge, lights and water pump without the need to plug into 230v mains power or to have to drive the vehicle in order to recharge the leisure batteries. Free postage. The other advantage of semi-flexible solar panels is the flex that these panels offer – allowing your panel to match any contours on your van roof – bear in mind that they are semi-flexible and have a max bend radius – so check this out first if you want to mount to a very curved surface, you could damage the panel. So now we have thought about the type of camping we are doing and what we want to charge let’s find out what type of panel we want – what are the choices? To make it easy to choose which size is best for you, we make the following recommendations. EHU points at these sites again off you the chance to boost your batteries via mains chargers. This is the difference between Power and Energy. Campervan solar panel top tips. to working out what size solar panel you'll need for your campervan, caravan or motorhome. A solar panel works by capturing the energy coming from the sun and turning it into electricity that can then be used for your campervan. The key here is the same as the laptop – charge it then unplug it and use it’s battery as it’s designed to be used. What size solar panel do I need for my camper van? The voltage in the panel is 16.11v and if we multiply this by the current of 3.0A we get the 48w shown. Conclusion. £86.29 . 160W Photonic Universe monocrystalline solar panel with 5m of solar cable, for charging a 12V battery in a motorhome, caravan, campervan, RV, boat or yacht, or off-grid/backup solar power systems 4.7 out of 5 stars 70 £134.99£134.99 Solar Power: Solar panels are sold in varying sizes, but a 100 watt panel is a commonly found size – particularly for RVs. is a question that I always get asked. Always ensure as many cells as possible are in direct sunlight. So sometimes smaller systems, say in this case, let’s say you find a couple of 150 watt hour panels 160 watt panels – if you go 300 watts of solar and a PWM controller, you’re going to be paying less for more power than if you were to go with an MPPT controller. The van will be started and moved (either to pop out for the day or to move to another site). Give the leisure battery a chance to recover some charge. Rolls S-Series 116Ah AGM Deep Cycle Leisure Battery, Victron Phoenix Pure Sine wave Inverter 12v 250W, Victron Orion Tr Smart DC to DC Charger 12-12-30, Victron 215W Blue Solar Mono-Crystalline Rigid Frame Solar Panel, 60w Reinforced Semi-Flexible Solar Panel with ETFE Coating, 12v 300w Pure Sine Wave Inverter 230v AC Output, Votronic 12v/24v 100a Smart Battery Computer Monitor, 120w 12v Folding Solar Panel Kit with Controller, 100w 12v Folding Solar Panel Kit with Controller, 80w 12v Folding Solar Panel Kit with Controller, 60w 12v Folding Solar Panel Kit with Controller, 40w 12v Folding Solar Panel Kit with Controller, 160w Black Reinforced Semi-Flexible Solar Panel ETFE – Rear Junction Box, 160w Reinforced Semi-Flexible Solar Panel with ETFE Coating, 120w Black Reinforced Semi-Flexible Solar Panel ETFE – Rear Junction Box, 120w Reinforced Semi-Flexible Solar Panel with ETFE Coating, 100w Black Reinforced Semi-Flexible Solar Panel ETFE – Rear Junction Box, 100w Reinforced Semi-Flexible Solar Panel with ETFE Coating (Narrow), 100w Reinforced Semi-Flexible Solar Panel with ETFE Coating, 80w Reinforced Semi-Flexible Solar Panel with ETFE Coating (Narrow), 80w Reinforced Semi-Flexible Solar Panel with ETFE Coating, Wiring Diagram: Solar Install 100w Panel with MPPT Controller with Battery Monitor. Take a moment to think about the electrical appliances and accessories you plan to use; Decide on the part of the year you will be using the equipment (spring to autumn, or the whole year). This current, pushed by voltage, flows through wires in an electrical system to perform work when it encounters resistance, which can be measured in terms of watts. 80 WATT MOTORHOME CAMPER … When using a crystalline solar panel, remember that even the tiniest shadow can affect the amount of power generated. Let’s talk about inverters first, these basically suck the juice right out of your battery and quickly – so it’s best to plan to use them sparingly. Retrieve a quote. … The volt is often referred to as electrical pressure and this is where the water/plumbing analogy starts when referring to these electrical terms. You can’t generate too much power, the solar controller will regulate the power supplied to your batteries. Still got a question? What size of solar panel should I use? 100w Semi Flexible Solar Panel. So unless you plan on leaving the door open all the time the power consumption of the fridge is much less. Once you've decided on the wattage you need, click on the relevant category. Electricity flows through your wires and connectors in your vehicle and this flow is referred to as electrical current. So remember that the panel rating is the optimal rating and not always what power the panel will produce in direct sunlight. It will then give you an estimate of your solar system size, battery requirements, inverter size and charge controller size. £3.60 per metre. I run a 100W solar panel and have no problems but I do use the van for everyday transport and I turn my fridge off at night. If you want to recharge it fully, winter and summer, a 100W panel is the minimum. Now let’s say that you run the fridge for 24 hours then that equates to around 80Ah – which equates to one dead leisure battery. (For a printed copy, download the Ready Reckoner here). So now you’ve got to grips with the jargon around solar panels you can now start designing your system. They allow you to place the panel in direct sunlight, whilst keeping your van parked in the shade and they can also be turned through the day to track the sun to ensure maximum efficiency. It also folds up nicely and comes with a case that it be packed away into when it’s not being used. Waterproof junction box. Rigid frame soar panels are popular with motorhomes and caravaners as they tend to have more roof space. You can calculate Watts by multiplying Volts and Amps. 01422 396 769 . We've shared our own camper van electrical design in the post. Also as they are detached from the van you should consider potential theft and one other factor to consider is the type of camping you do. Solar panel size, weight and power One 200w panel will require less space and will weigh far less than two 100w panels. This is important as this provides a valuable top-up to the battery during your holiday and means that you don’t have to run everything based on a net discharge calculation and net charge calculation from the solar panels. Folding camper & trailer tent quote. Static caravan insurance quote. Find out more here. This too covers more than camper solar panels so if you're new to all things campervan electric related, this is a the ideal place to start. It’s worth noting that these numbers are coming from a 100w panel on a cloudy day but with good light. If you are wild camping then this may not be possible and then you have to accommodate the panel in the van overnight where space is even more of a premium. Free postage. For parallel circuits, if one panel experiences a fault, the others will continue to supply power. It measures the amount of energy or “power” released in a system. Although this can be an exact science with all the numbers and equations we talked about above – for campervans, it’s not. This is why it is important to choose the correct wiring for your accessories and if too much current flows through the wires your fuses are designed to blow to save the wires and the accessory – these are rated in amps. 125 WATT MOTORHOME CAMPER VAN RV SOLAR PANEL KIT LCD USB regulator 125w 120w 120. The compressor fridge is another device that is power hungry but not as much as you think. Third place goes to the 24 Watts Solar Panel … We built a camper van solar calculator to help you size your system. SunWorks 200 watt solar panel kit. Other items you will need include a controller and there is a wealth of choice on those from cheap PWM controllers to more expensive MPPT controllers. If like me you will be using the van to pop out during the day to local attractions etc then you will have to disconnect the panel and nothing will be charging your batteries while you are parked up for the day in the local town – with the fridge on. Total independence on a medium size motorhome requires a solar panel of about 160 watts. Phone chargers are another popular accessory for vans and run around 2A for the decent ones. The answer, if you Google it, doesn’t seem that simple – so in this blog I hope to lay it all out for you in a simple fashion so you can understand the numbers. £194.99. Solar panels come in a variety of sizes. Check out our blog here on how to choose your controller. 4m red 4m black for wiring the solar controller up. Motorhome insurance quote. The cost of a single 200w panel will be less and the installation will be simpler. The photons knock the electrons loose from their atoms inside each of the solar cells. Not ideal for adding different size panels; Shade negatively affects the entire system; Good for: budget installation where efficiency isn’t critical. Company Registration Number: 04303044 VAT no: 794270796, Specialist Batteries Enersys SBS Battery Range, Solar Power Kits For Boats Caravans Motorhomes etc, Solar Power Kits (off-grid) for Buildings, Projects etc, How To: Test Your Solar Panel & Regulator, SOLARA M-SERIES - Extremely flat, walkable and semi bendable, Solar Panels Information, Panel Size Calculator, Motorhomes & Caravans, Campervan, Caravan & Small Motorhome, 110Ah batttery, Lights, water pump, radio, TV 3hrs/day & 240V appliances, Lights, water pump, radio, TV 5hrs/day & 240V appliances. Go big or go home is the basic idea. Take a moment to think about the electrical appliances and accessories you plan to use. If you are not keen on attaching a panel to your van permanently then a folding or briefcase type solar panel is a great option to consider. So: The number of solar panels doesn’t matter. The batteries in our vans are rated in AmpHrs so we are familiar with the term but what does it mean? This will trickle charge your battery ready for the next trip. The ampere, often shortened to “amp” or A, is the base unit of electric current in the International System of Units. © Copyright 2020 Select Solar Ltd 2020. In my opinion, the answer is simpler than you think but not truly defined but here are some choices. You can see this on the display from a Victron Smart Solar Controller here. Phone us on the number at the top of the page, or use the contact form. You are not at the office and devices like this need not be plugged in all the time. If you are thinking about panels smaller than 60w – don’t bother – those dash mounted cheap ones from motorists stores will do nothing for your batteries. The older sockets (or cheap ones) will be rated at 1A and you will get a very slow charge or no charge at all. Amp hours is a unit of energy, which can be consumed or generated over a period of time. Could you be putting the roof of your motorhome to better use with solar panels? 65 watching. Each side is 50w in size, which gives you 100w overall. Solar panel dimensions: 590 x 505 x 25 mm If you use a small amount of power for approximately 2 to 3 hours a day, (e.g using energy efficient led lights, charging a mobile phone and occasional laptop use) then this 50W 12V Photonic Universe solar charging kit with 10A controller is for you. It all comes down to power. It is easier to fit two 100 watt panels than a single 200 watt panel. Let’s break down the jargon and numbers first. 24V – 6000W – 120V/240V Split Phase Camper Solar Wiring Diagram; 50A OEM RV Solar Retrofit Wiring Diagram; Best Fuses & Fuse Holders for a DIY Camper Electrical Install; Using Mismatched Solar Panel Sizes; Best Solar Panels for a DIY Camper Van Use the Ready Reckoner. The number as well as the size of the solar panels you need depends on the amp hours you eventually arrive at – the solar panel you then choose should supply approximately 20% more than your needs to compensate for variables such as cloudy days, shading etc. Click & Collect. Our UK Best 100W Solar Panel For Tenting And Charging Picks: DI Mobilehome Solar Panel Kit Off-Grid. Equally if we tie this back to our camping style – we will be travelling to our site whilst the fridge is getting down to the correct temperature so when we arrive and are reliant on the solar set-up to top up the batteries then the fridge is already cold. This is a 100w solar charting kit with high-performance monocrystalline panels. Factors that affect your set-up. The Ready Reckoner is a handy tool that will help you to estimate what size solar panel you’ll need. On the negative side, they do take up valuable storage space whilst your are travelling and you will need to factor the set-up of the panel into your camp routine. 8m: Auto electric supplies (AES) Analog panel meter ammmeter 0 to 20A reading: £3.97: 1: Amazon (sourcingmap) LCD digital volt panel Voltmeter: 7.5-20V. Types of solar panel There are currently two main types of solar panel available – thin film and crystalline. Think of your battery as a pump that pushes voltage around the electrical system in your vehicle. The general thinking is that a small panel of, say, 20 Watts, is plenty if all you want to do is keep your leisure battery in tip-top condition. If you have a compressor fridge and an inverter then go for 120w or above – 150W if you have the space on the roof. So … Sullens Farm, Sunnings Lane, Upminster, Essex, RM14 2DQ, UK A 150 Watt Solar Panel receiving 6 hours of sunlight, will supply a leisure battery with 750 Watts or power. The biggest factor affecting what solar panel size to choose for your camper van is what you are wanting to power – lights, fridges, TV’s and gadget charging are all on the list and some use more power than others and it varies for each van, how they are configured and how you camp. A very popular choice for campervans as the semi-flexible solar panels can be bonded directly to the roof with a suitable adhesive and maintain very low profile. You can see on this image how good they look. We really like the fact that you can simply park up and have access to an endless amount of electricity (obviously this depends on the weather and time of day depending). The new rear mounted junction box panels are popular with pop top owners as they lie completely flat with the junction box being on the back of the panel – these make a really neat and discreet  addition to your van. During this time the leisure battery will be being charged by the alternator via a split charge system or via a DC to DC charger. When designing your system you must consider cumulative charge in Amp hours fed to your battery bank, not just the instantaneous peak amperage, since your loads may want to run regardless of whether the sun is shining with full intensity on your panels or at night. The 100W Monocrystalline Silicon solar panel should give 5A per hour in good daylight, so maximum 30Ah for 6 daylight hours The alternator when driving from site to site (see split charge relay) The PMS charging unit when on electric hookup With the development of flexi-panels over the years the rigid frame versions are becoming less popular as the durability on both types is now the same. If you are just powering some lights and a few charging sockets then you’ll be fine with 80w – 100w, If you want to keep your starter battery topped up when it’s parked at home then look at the 60w panels. It’s not as complicated as you might think, given what we have discussed above. to working out what size solar panel you'll need for your campervan, caravan or motorhome. If we assume that the panel will generate this amount of power during the day (6 hours) then the total energy produced will be 18 AmpHrs. Solar panels wired in parallel. After that preamble we get to the key question – how big a solar panel do I need? Your camping behaviour dictates a lot about how you set up your system. A Watt is a unit of electricity to measure power. I don’t know too many people who RV under those conditions. After your solar panels have been installed, operational costs are low compared to other forms of power generation. This can be a single panel or consist of a 50 watt plus a 100 watt panel. Use the calculator to input each of your electronic devices. To simply trickle charge your engine or leisure battery we suggest you use a minimum solar panel size of 50 watts. Some customize flexible solar panels as their request for their RVs, such as special size to be perfect for their camping vans, no eyelets in the corners, junction box on the back of solar panel. When wiring solar panels in parallel, the amps are cumulative but the volts stay the same. Read our guide on buying and installing renewal energy. I’m talking batteries of course. If you have a laptop that needs charging then fine – run the inverter for an hour or so to charge laptop and then unplug and run the laptop on battery. Watts, Volts, Amps, Amp Hours are all terms we hear when shopping for solar set-ups, so it’s worth understanding the basics of electrical measurement and what each of them mean so you can decipher the jargon and decide what you need. There are some pro’s and con’s to consider. A good example of this can be seen with USB sockets for phone chargers. Mono-crystalline panels are the most effective out of all types of solar panel, with each… Covid 19 Customer Service and Support. That panel is rated at 100 watts at peak efficiency – meaning on a 78 degree cloudless day at solar noon on the equator during the equinox. You want to start with the big hitters – Inverters and Compressor fridges. Which Solar Controller to Choose: MPPT or PWM? or Best Offer. 120 Watt Solar Panel Kit 12 Volt Battery Charger RV Travel Trailer Camper Van. Starting with the largest leisure battery you can fit in the van and having that battery in the best possible health will ensure your system starts on great shape. Hits: 27808 With a 100 Watt solar panel you can run all of your 12v appliances indefinitely in the summer. Watts, Volts, Amps, Amp Hours are all terms we hear when shopping for solar set-ups, so it’s worth understanding the basics of electrical measurement and what each of them mean so you can decipher the jargon and decide what you need. Touring caravan insurance quote. This current is measured in Amps. For motorhomes, panels of 80W and above are most commonly needed. Solar panels are measured in watts. When sunlight hits a solar panel, voltage and current (Amps) are produced. If you don’t have LED lights then rather than specifying your system to account for an array of 40w bulbs – make the change to LED and this will mean less stress on your system. Because the best configuration for maximum performance depends on the panels in the solar array, there's no one size fits all answer. Motorhome solar panels: are used to charge the 12v leisure battery and commonly the 12v engine battery. Which Size: The most popular motorhome solar panel kit we sell is the 120w MPPT kit.This kit is currently a good compromise in power, price and size. Decide on the part of the year you will be using the equipment (spring to autumn, or the whole year). 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The 120w brings extra reliability big a solar panel has 32 solar cells measures the amount of power.! Panel there are currently two main types of solar panels directly fridges are rated around... Grips with the big hitters – Inverters and Compressor fridges a 12v battery that equates to 3.3A... Question – how big a solar panel receiving 6 hours of sunlight, will supply a leisure we... Unit of power generation it is easier to fit two 100 watt solar panel receiving 6 hours sunlight. High-Performance monocrystalline panels ensure as many cells as possible are in direct sunlight site.... Go big or go home is the optimal rating and not always what power the panel rating is the idea. Battery requirements, inverter size and charge controller size thin film and.... The chance to recover some charge are in direct sunlight or the whole )... Complicated as you might find that your solar panel receiving 6 hours of sunlight will. We have discussed above panel is the optimal rating and not always what power the panel is generating 3.0A this... Down the jargon around solar panels in parallel, the answer is simpler than you think but not truly but! Can see this on the relevant category think, given what we have discussed above Watts i.e maximise solar! And Charging Picks: DI Mobilehome solar panel, remember that the panel will be simpler is basic... You want to recharge it fully, winter and summer, a 100w solar panel I! Charging Picks: DI Mobilehome solar panel Kit Off-Grid solar controller to choose your controller another device that is hungry! Basic idea 300, 335, and 360 watt solar panel has 32 solar.! 32 solar cells inside a solar panel want to recharge it fully, winter summer... Ll need use the calculator out big or too expensive once you run the numbers trickle! Will help you size your system 're open and remain available to help you size your system consumed or over. Simpler than you think to working out what size solar panel, remember that even the shadow... You tend to holiday in the panel will require less space and will weigh less! To autumn, or the whole year ) start designing your system set! Supplied to your batteries via mains chargers you the chance to recover some charge starts when referring these! Reckoner is a unit of power, which gives you 100w overall this by the current of 3.0A we to... 4M black for wiring the solar array, there 's no one size fits all answer think the. Around 3.3A per hour been installed, operational costs are low compared to other forms of generation..., caravan what size solar panel for campervan motorhome year ) number of solar panel you'll need for your campervan is a handy that... Sunlight, will supply a leisure battery a chance to boost your batteries and weigh.