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Old 10-28-2021, 12:51 AM   #1
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upgrading battery... How to determine max AMPAGE?

Hi Folks.

The plan is to upgrade the batter on the solaris lite T - 1950 travel trailer to a lithium battery and (2) 100 watt solar panels with charge controller and possibly an inverter. First and foremost is anyone aware of what ampage the trailer runs on and it's max for this potential increase? Also any thoughts on connecting the solar system to the trailer without pre installs?

Thanks for the assistance.


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Old 10-28-2021, 06:06 PM   #2
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The main wiring is a #10 good to 30 amps but it powers ever thing so there is not a lot of room for error. I run two group 24 batteries and a 100 watt panel. You would have to do some serious mods to run use lithium batteries including the converter charger if you intend to plug it in. As far as the inverter if you have an AC draw of X amps it will tax the batteries at a times 10 factor so forget the micro wave. My Solar has a charge controller mounted directly on the panel yes there is some loss but it is protected and simple it is connected to the batteries with a power pole connector there is a matching connection at the back of the camper. I am able to pickup the panel and move it. It also folds flat making it easy to transport on the campers bed. It can be both elevated and rotated to follow the sun. The KISS principle has great merit.

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Old 10-28-2021, 08:28 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by KevinS View Post
First and foremost is anyone aware of what ampage the trailer runs on and it's max for this potential increase?
Hi Kevin,

We need some more info to help better on the sizing. The camper has both 120 VAC loads and 12 VDC loads.

What is your plan to run off of battery and for how long? Only the DC loads with an occasional 120 VAC something plugged in? And what 120 VAC things are plugged in?

Have you converted to LED 12 volt lights? If you have not, you should as the old incandescent 921 bulbs eat a lot of power.

We can find the 12 VDC loads for the fridge, water pump, furnace, water heater and LED lights without too much effort off the spec sheets. Then you need to sort out how long they will be on for. We can help with generic use.

I have a friend who has a solar/lithium/generator setup that can run the roof AC unit if needed off battery, but he has a mega system and they live in AZ where the sun shines a lot. And a large enough camper for the roof panels and batteries. He has one sweet system for off grid, but he spent a lot of $$$$ to create it. Sizing the system starts with, what do you have to and want to run?

Hope this helps

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Old 10-29-2021, 08:12 AM   #4
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lithium batteries are tricky, they are subject to thermal run away. So every thing has to be just so, they can catch fire. A good tool to own for some thing like this is a clamp on amp meter a deceit one runs in the $50+ range. Not all will measure DC current so be sure that it will, it must have a Hall effect pickup. In my case even though I run two batteries current draw is important with flooded cell batteries more so than a Lithium setup, as John mention lighting. When I started with my 1700 to modernize it I checked the lighting loads 13 blubs drew 23 amps! They were far better heaters than lighting devices after replacing them with LED's including two more the current dropped to 3.8 amps! You can be totally off grid but it comes at a price a few days of rain easily can become a big factor.
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battery ampage, solar setup

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