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Solar and ac


Dena Hill
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https://olivertraveltrailers.com/forums/topic/6966-quick-dirty-ac-test-with-platinum-lithium-package/

Do not rely on solar to recharge, because you never know if you will be in shade or under heavy cloud cover. You will still need to carry a moderate sized generator.

John Davies

Spokane WA

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"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags, Safari snorkel.

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You can run the AC on battery power, but the solar panels can't recharge them as fast as the AC drains them.  Don't expect to run the AC continuously on solar and battery alone.

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Steve H & Mary Allyn W

San Antonio, TX

2022 LE II Hull #969 "Un Œuf", 2021 MB Sprinter 3500 "Polly", 2016 GMC Canyon 2.8L diesel "Max"

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43 minutes ago, Dena Hill said:

Can we run our AC while boondocking with our solar and lithium batteries?

Yes, you can, but for how long will depend on which lithium package you purchase.  And, as John Davies points out, once your battery charge is depleted, you will need a means of recharge to supplement solar.  Otherwise,  your other electrical loads such as lights, fans, microwave, etc. will not work.

Some folks have chosen to buy the Lithium Platinum package, along with additional portable solar panels, to maximize their AC run time when boondocking, and their solar recharge capability.  But, even with that significant additional expense, they will not be able to run the AC for more than a few hours per day without a generator, even in full sun.

For what it's worth, we have an Elite II on order with the Lithium Pro package.  We expect we will be able to run the AC on battery power, through the inverter, for an hour or so at a time.  But, we will also carry a Champion 2500 watt dual fuel generator and a separate propane tank in the bed of our pickup, so we can power the AC for longer if desired, and recharge the batteries when needed.

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Hull #?

Central Idaho

2022 Elite II with expected delivery November, 2022.

Tow Vehicle:  2019 Tundra Double Cab 4x4, 5.7L with tow package

 

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I fail to see where this makes sense to me, let's see we go Boondocking to get away an be in nature, now we want to set inside with A/C, did I miss something here. 

trainman

Elite II, Twin Bed, Hull #489, 2019 RAM 1500, 5.7 Hemi, 4X4, Crew Cab, 5'7" bed, Towing Package, 3.92 Gears.

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One other aspect of running ac on batteries is that the inverter gets VERY warm under continuous heavy load. If the inverter is not vented to the outside, then you're just adding more heat to the inside.

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2019 Legacy Elite II #488 - Delivery July 24, 2019
2018 F150 Platinum SC SB EB - Leer canopy

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2 hours ago, Trainman said:

we go Boondocking to get away an be in nature, now we want to set inside with A/C, did I miss something here.

I always wondered the same thing. Now my wife is on medications that need to be stored strictly between 66-77 degrees F. The A/C is on for the meds, not for us. Suddenly found myself in somebody else's moccasins.

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Stephanie and Dudley from CT.  2022 LE2, Hull #1150: Eggcelsior.

Tow vehicle: 2016 GMC Sierra 6.0 gas dually 4x4.

Our Oliver journey: Steph and Dud B's RV Screed

Where we've been RVing since 1999:

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53 minutes ago, Steph and Dud B said:

I always wondered the same thing. Now my wife is on medications that need to be stored strictly between 66-77 degrees F. The A/C is on for the meds, not for us. Suddenly found myself in somebody else's moccasins.

Buy a small dc fridge, that can EASILY be kept at a constant temp. No way are you going to be happy with maintaining that temp inside the trailer all the time. This one works up to 68 degrees F.

VEVOR 12 Volt Refrigerator 10 Quart , Portable Mini Freezer (-4℉~68℉) With APP Control Car Compressor Fridge Cooler 12V/24V DC and 110-220V AC For Camping, Road Trip, Travel, Boat, Skincare, Outdoor and Home

Keep additional thermal mass in there like water or soda in cans to help stabilize the temp when you open the lid.

John Davies

Spokane WA

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"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags, Safari snorkel.

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4 hours ago, Trainman said:

I fail to see where this makes sense to me, let's see we go Boondocking to get away an be in nature, now we want to set inside with A/C, did I miss something here. 

trainman

Goodness!  What a tacky reply!  Just trying to learn a few things before we take delivery of our LE2.  Hopefully you don’t feel the need to impose your opinion on my questions again!

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Dena, I doubt trainman was doing anything but musing out loud, as his camping style is probably different from yours. As is mine, and, we probably all live in different regions...

We've actually only used ac a handful of times in 15 seasons in our Elite, as we try to camp in more temperate climates. We tend to  "chase the cooler weather."

Since I can't actually help you with your question ( I have only 2 x 105 agm batteries,  and no inverter, don'tuse ac much, but boondock almost always) in any other way, I'll just point out that there are a couple other threads running on this same topic right now that may be of interest to you, and provide some answers. 

Your question is certainly valid, if you camp in regions of extreme heat, and are spending the extra dollars for lithium.

Welcome to the forum. 

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

 

 

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1 hour ago, Dena Hill said:

Goodness!  What a tacky reply!  Just trying to learn a few things before we take delivery of our LE2.  Hopefully you don’t feel the need to impose your opinion on my questions again!

Yes, Dena. There are many frequent posters on this site with the same mentality. Some feel the need show their superiority to us plebeians.

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26 minutes ago, SecondTimeAround said:

Yes, Dena. There are many tacky comments on this site. Some feel the need to be superior.

Sorry, but I  don't share that feeling.

Sometimes,  our comments don't translate as well as face to face conversation.  That happens... unfortunately.  It's not quite the same as conversing around the campfire, though we try.

But, I'm a member of probably 20 other forums, sailing, rvs, home improvements,  etc. and this is the most congenial of them all, imo.

I see this is your first post. Welcome to the forum, as you just joined up!. 

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2 hours ago, John E Davies said:

This one works up to 68 degrees F.

Good eye! Thank you. I've been looking for something like this. It would have to be accurate, though, not dropping below 66 degrees.

We've found that the lowest right kitchen drawer is the most thermally stable part of the trailer. It warms and cools the slowest, so we can usually keep meds in there until mid/late afternoon before firing up the A/C and putting the meds in the main cabin.

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Stephanie and Dudley from CT.  2022 LE2, Hull #1150: Eggcelsior.

Tow vehicle: 2016 GMC Sierra 6.0 gas dually 4x4.

Our Oliver journey: Steph and Dud B's RV Screed

Where we've been RVing since 1999:

ALAZCACOCTDEFLGAIDILINIAKYLAMDMAMIMNMSMOMTNENVNHNMNYNCNDOHOKORPASCSDTNTXUTVTVAWAWVWIWYmed.jpg.e6391b9064a3f8f0951751f985664135.jpg

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If I were in your situation,  (and I'm very sorry. That's not much of a range to work with) I'd spend a little  more on a marine 12v dc secop/danfoss small portable fridge. I wouldn't trust thermoelectric,  nor fake secop fridge. Too critical. 

John's idea of adding thermal mass to a small fridge is stellar, imo. I use thermal mass to regulate my truckfridge. Cold sink, vs heat sink. 

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2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

 

 

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58 minutes ago, SecondTimeAround said:

Yes, Dena. There are many frequent posters on this site with the same mentality. Some feel the need show their superiority to us plebeians.

Wow.  Quite a first post.  

I have to agree with Sherry, a few (not many) of our members can be very tongue-in-cheek with their comments.

Most of us who have been here a long time stay because we want to help new owners.  We were new once too, and looking for answers.  It’s a very congenial group of owners and I hope we can all work to keep it that way.  Mike

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Texas Hill Country | Elite II #135 | Ram 2500 6.7L

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2 hours ago, SeaDawg said:

Dena, I doubt trainman was doing anything but musing out loud, as his camping style is probably different from yours. As is mine, and, we probably all live in different regions...

We've actually only used ac a handful of times in 15 seasons in our Elite, as we try to camp in more temperate climates. We tend to  "chase the cooler weather."

Since I can't actually help you with your question ( I have only 2 x 105 agm batteries,  and no inverter, don'tuse ac much, but boondock almost always) in any other way, I'll just point out that there are a couple other threads running on this same topic right now that may be of interest to you, and provide some answers. 

Your question is certainly valid, if you camp in regions of extreme heat, and are spending the extra dollars for lithium.

Welcome to the forum. 

I’m sure we will most times camp in more temperate weather.  But I would like to be prepared just in case we are stuck in some heat.  Some folks just need to learn to scroll on if they can’t refrain from being tacky and judgemental.

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I'm sorry you see it as judgmental. I did not. 

I do understand your point. We've encountered snow in October, freezing weather in July, and crazy hot in September in various places, in our travels.  It's good to know your options,  and be prepared. I certainly agree with that. 

Please , take a look at the current threads that are discussing your very questions.  I think you'll likely  find them helpful.

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2 hours ago, SecondTimeAround said:

Yes, Dena. There are many frequent posters on this site with the same mentality. Some feel the need show their superiority to us plebeians.

I just find those kind of smart -a— answers unnecessary.  Thanks for your support.

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1 hour ago, Mike and Carol said:

Wow.  Quite a first post.  

I have to agree with Sherry, a few (not many) of our members can be very tongue-in-cheek with their comments.

Most of us who have been here a long time stay because we want to help new owners.  We were new once too, and looking for answers.  It’s a very congenial group of owners and I hope we can all work to keep it that way.  Mike

Thanks, Mike. A first-time poster but not a rookie. I have RV'ed for several years and am taking delivery of my Elite II soon. I have followed this forum for several months looking for insight and have gathered a lot. Trainman's comment "I fail to see where this makes sense to me, let's see we go Boondocking to get away an be in nature, now we want to set inside with A/C, did I miss something here." was tacky. It is as if his style of camping is all that matters. Dena's question was legitimate and did not need to be met with condescension. Some people, other than trainman, might want to camp with AC. Several posters had really good advice specific to Dena's question. I applaud the relevant replies to Dena's question. My comment to trainman's comment was no less congenial than trainman's comment itself.

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STA, I agree.  Dena’s question was very legitimate and I’m sure there are others that were following for answers and advice.  There are a couple of members who have a specific camping style and make comments based on that style.  My point is to let those comments go, understanding where they are coming from, and stay on topic without calling out comments that seem tacky.  I’m also on many other forums and once comments start getting personal the community suffers.  Odd, one off comments, that don’t contribute to the discussion should just be ignored.  One “less congenial comment” need not be followed by another “less congenial comment”, then another, etc.  Mike

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Texas Hill Country | Elite II #135 | Ram 2500 6.7L

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I recognize that. It is what it is, and I think we can all still be "virtual" friends. 

I disagree, on "tacky", as I've said before. You have your opinion, I have mine. My dad would have said,  (as he often did) come on in, let's have coffee and cake, and work it out. Unfortunately,  here, I can't offer coffee and cake, unless you are within an hour of asheville. 😃

I think we could all lighten up, and look at other camping styles and ideas. Imo. On any forum, all of us must recognize that everyone doesn't share the same lifestyle,  camping style, equipment,  or opinions.  And, we must be prepared for opinions unlike our own.  We are all different.  Diversity of opinion is good, imo. I've learned lessons from brand new folks. And, from older owners, as well.

For example, If you search "truckfridge " you'll find my very measured and honest reviews of managing a dc secop/ danfoss fridge with solar. 

I really think this is the op's goal. What works. What doesn't. 

 

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12 hours ago, Dena Hill said:

Can we run our AC while boondocking with our solar and lithium batteries?

Just wondering if your original question was answered?   The 1st two replies you received from John Davies and Steve and MA sum up the situation.  The link in John Davies post explains the details.   So now you know what your wonderful trailer will or won’t do in regards to running the AC off grid, only you can decide how you plan to use it.   Maybe you will use a generator, maybe not.  Perhaps you’ll use additional solar panels, some do, some don’t.  No wrong answers.  If you’d like to know more, you could do a search, there are several other posts that discuss the topic.   Let us know if you can’t find the answers, there are many here that will help you.

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“Ramble” - 2021 Legacy Elite II #797;  2020 Ford F-250

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11 hours ago, Trainman said:

I fail to see where this makes sense to me, let's see we go Boondocking to get away an be in nature, now we want to set inside with A/C, did I miss something here. 

trainman

I’m not sure if you missed anything, but picture this, if you will. You’ve had to travel, perhaps to a June wedding, maybe staged in the south or in the west, you made it through the ordeal and now you’ve got some free time so you decide to slowly make your way home, boondocking along the way thinking “this will defray some of the cost of this load of horse shite.” It’s HOT, daytime temps are consistently above 100°, it won’t cool off enough to sleep until well past midnight, if then. The ability to run the AC for even a short period of time to cool things down enough to go to sleep seems, at least to me, a pretty good option. 

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Steve, Tali and the dogs: Reacher and Rocky plus our beloved Storm, Maggie and Lucy (all waiting at the Rainbow Bridge)

2008 Legacy Elite I - Outlaw Oliver, Hull #026 | 2014 Legacy Elite II - Outlaw Oliver, Hull #050 | 2022 Silverado High Country 3500HD SRW Diesel 4x4 

 

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16 hours ago, Dena Hill said:

Can we run our AC while boondocking with our solar and lithium batteries?

I don't have Lithium Batteries,  but I agree with some of the other postings that it would take a lot of batteries to run the AC for any length of time.  I had bus conversion with 640AH of batteries, and I could not run the AC for any long length of time without a generator.  The other side of the equation, is  to getting those batteries charged up after being drained down with the solar.  It is just not enough power.   

I ended up buying the Honda EU2200i generators to run the AC while boon docking.  We only need it a couple of times a year, but we boondocks 3 weeks ago for 5 days and it was between 95-100 degrees.  We hiked all day long and had a great time, but it was nice to be able to cool down the trailer in the evening so we could sleep.  The AC had to run for 3 plus hours to get the temps down inside.   It was also nice to be able to cook dinner inside the trailer in some comfort when it was really hot outside, without heating the inside of the trailer more from cooking.  I love it that I can enjoy being out in nature, and still live in some luxury,  No more backpacking and sleeping on the ground for me.   Sometimes we will use the Microwave on the batteries/inverter to heat up water for our night time teas.  The batteries can do this just fine, but you are only taxing the system for a few minutes. 

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2020 Elite II Twin -  Hull # 648

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I've got the 390 ah system with three lithiums. Most of my boondocking so far has been in warmer weather, sometimes hot. The AC is very handy during meal prep (30 min?) or for a nap (90 min?) when it's just too darn hot inside. On those occasions the AC worked great and was much appreciated. With the Lithionics app on my phone, I can monitor in real time the draw on the batteries and watch them go from something like 87% to 65% for a longer AC use. I do this knowing that it will take longer for the solar panels to charge the batteries back up. I don't have a generator. I was told by Anita before I bought my trailer that the batteries would run the AC for four hours. I've never tested that. I think that once you have your trailer you'll be able to experiment while boondocking to see exactly how much you can use the AC. If you want to use it a lot on a regular basis, well, the batteries won't handle that and you'll need a generator. 

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2021 Elite II #841, 2020 GMC Sierra 1500 AT4, 3.0 diesel

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