RV solar charging is experiencing a groundswell, but a lack of unified platforms is still allowing many RV owners to use solar charging how they see fit. While applications are limited, more and more RV solar charging kits are becoming available each sunny season.
The problem with the lack of a clear market leader or standard practice means that solar charging for your RV requires specialized experience and products. For you to safely install any solar charging expansion kits, it’s important you find a partner who knows RVs well — not just solar — in order to get the right equipment for your RV.
Understanding RV Solar Panels
Solar charging your RV usually accomplishes one of two goals: 1) to slowly charge your house batteries or 2) to provide an eco-friendly and primary source of your RV’s electrical power. Your choice for an RV solar charging kit depends on which of these two you wish to achieve.
Solar Trickle, Slow Charging
As your RV sits, it runs your battery down. Dead batteries can be a hassle, and if they’re left for a long time, they can end up experiencing damage that can also harm your RV. Slow charging of these batteries through a solar trickle charger can be the answer to this concern.
Solar trickle chargers typically operate as a stand-alone solar charging kit that feeds a few watts of power to your batteries whenever deployed. These are the simplest of solar charging expansion kits that often connect through a 12V DC plug. You simply place the panel and secure it in a sunny place, then plug it into your RV for the steady juice.
Some newer RVs will come with specific places and plug-ins for these panels or may even have the option for a solar trickle charger to come pre-installed.
Full Power Options
If you’re in need of a complete power overhaul, you’ll want to invest in a set of RV solar charging expansion kits that are permanently installed on your RV. They sit securely in place as you travel and often must be opened up to the sun to achieve their full power status.
RV solar power kits are essentially a large battery charger that keeps everything up and running. These models tend to be more expensive initially, but you’ll save money over the life or your RV. You’ll also be doing your part to protect the environment that you love to visit in your RV.
RV solar panels and kits supply electricity at a specific voltage that you’ll need to match with your battery. Voltage on the panels should be higher than your batteries because it allows them to meet the charge requirements of your battery when the weather is cloudy and grey.
Temperature shifts, shade and other environmental factors can shift your voltage, causing drops. We recommend installing your panels in parallel in order to minimize this and maintain a better power flow regardless of the weather. Solar charge controllers are able to adjust the battery voltage and power flow in order to keep everything running smoothly, preventing any overcharging that could lead to damage.
RV Solar Charging Kits
The great news is that RV solar charging kits are available to meet your specific needs. They’re capable and affordable, especially when you use them to replace other power sources on a consistent basis.
When you’re ready to start cutting your power costs and let nature keep you rolling, visit TVForMyRV’s solar panel kits page for great pricing. And don’t forget to watch our video explanation for installing and maintaining your RV’s solar charging equipment.