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Elite I, AGM batteries, solar, first trip without hookups and cold 29- 32 degree nights at Mt Pisgah, how will we fair?


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I've camped at Mt Pisgah numerous times many years ago in a popup and it even snowed on us. My Elite I, we got 11 August new.   Now my situation is different as a caregiver to my wife who I have to consider even more so.  I've never had a furnace before.  It works great, having tested it today.  Going to be cold nights. Any advice on how the batteries ( 2 AGMs) may hold up through the night to operate the fan from the furnace? I'm bringing a backup propane heater, I used in our Aframe popup that I know I need to vent if I use. any advise would be appreciated.

 

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Your furnace fan uses about 3 amps when it is running. How long it runs in a day depends on your thermostat setting, both day and night, and whether you have any solar gain (heat buildup) during the day. If you keep it at 70 degrees all the time it is going to run very often during the night. What is your comfort level when sleeping? Do you each have warm sleeping bags or plain blankets? How warm will it get outside during the day?

I set the temp to 58 degrees when I am by myself, in a summer sleeping bag (35 degree rating). My wife wants 65 under a bunch of blankets. I don’t think anyone can comment constructively about your situation until you tell us how you both sleep and if you are OK with it getting colder inside than your home usually gets.

These trailers are well insulated, they are quite slow to heat up during the day and also slow to cool down at night. You are going to have to experiment, but one night isn’t going to kill your batteries. Just be sure to run the fridge on propane, and try to do do any “energy hungry” tasks (charging phones, running the microwave) early in the day so the solar can catch up before dark! Don’t start cooking a couple of frozen tv dinners at 6:00 pm!

If you are not camping directly in the open, you will have to use your generator. FYI when I choose a site in summer, I try to get one with afternoon shade and morning and or noon sun, to reduce heat buildup. In cooler months I try for wide open (no shade whatsoever) to maximize solar gain and solar charging. Google Earth helps to find the right kind of site to make your solar panels as useful as possible, by studying the tree cover and sun direction...

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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Never mind about picking an ideal spot for solar, if you are talking about Mt Pisgah on the Blue Ridge, there won’t be any suitable sites. You will need to run your gennie daily. DARN TREES….😳

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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We’ve camped in cold frequently and ran our furnace overnight.  Never an issue with the batteries.  Usually, the sun recharged quickly the next day.  A few times when we were under tree cover or particularly cloudy weather (Glacier and Teton NPs) we ran the generator the next day.  Mike

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

ALAZARCACOFLGAIDILKSKYLAMDMSMOMTNENVNMNYNCNDOHOKSCSDTNTXUTVAWVWYsm.jpgALAZARCACOCTDEFLGAIDILINIAKSKYLAMEMDMAMS

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There should be some nice "Fall leaf color" up on the Parkway starting this week (October 4th).  And, the weather forecast is for nice sunny days with cool nights - mid 30's probably upon the Parkway at over 6,000 feet.

I'm only about 20 miles from the Pisgah camp ground -  if you need something send me a PM.

Bill

2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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46 minutes ago, topgun2 said:

There should be some nice "Fall leaf color" up on the Parkway starting this week (October 4th).  And, the weather forecast is for nice sunny days with cool nights - mid 30's probably upon the Parkway at over 6,000 feet.

I'm only about 20 miles from the Pisgah camp ground -  if you need something send me a PM.

Bill

Thank you all! This is what I wanted to know.  Years ago, when we got snowed on at Mt Pisgah in the old popup, we were fine.  Now, my wife is not quite the camper of those old days, so I have to consider her comfort a little more. We keep our winter home thermostat usually on 65 and we don't mind layering up.  We were up on the BRP last week at Mountain River CG and fall color was very noticable but now for sure, it's here even in Greene Co.Thanks again!

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Our older elite is not as well insulated as your new Elite, and we have been fine down to the teens and 20s at night. Like John E Davies, we set the furnace on low (55 to 60), wear socks (my feet always get cold), and a warm quilt with a sheet on top. Take an extra blanket, just in case. I roll up towels or a throw to put against the hull on my side (I  am short. So I get the shorter curved side of the bed.) Kick the heat up in the morning to get dressed, and back down when the sun and rising temps starts to warm the trailer. 

The furnace will probably use about 15 to 20 amp hours that way, and we're snug and warm, even with the vent cracked a bit for moisture venting. Even at Pisgah, you can probably get most of your overnight use back during the day from solar, during mid day sun. You should be fine, if you limit electrical use and run the fridge on gas. 

I have never used a portable propane heater. I feel the Ollie is too airtight for safety, personally, to use one.  

Some sites there get more sun than others. You may be able to find one that's a bit more open. Do you have a generator, and a neutral ground plug? You can take it with, just in case the weather is cloudy. 

Keep an eye on the battery monitor. Don't let your agms run down below 50 per cent. 

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

 

 

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I have a 2021 Elite 1 and have slept several nights in the 30s (never much below 30).  I usually heat the trailer to about 60-65 when go to bed.  I turn the furnace off or very low (50) and go to sleep.  By the morning, the trailer is High 40s - low 50s.

It consumes only about .2 to .4 volts of my battery (run the fridge on propane, not DC).

I hope that helps.  Have fun and enjoy the trip.

Bill

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Hull #735 - 2021 Elite 1 (Shorty)  |  2021 Toyota Tundra

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Keep in mind your day length in October, it is really hard to recharge with only a little DIRECT exposure when you only have maybe nine hours of adequate sun. The first hours at dawn and dusk don’t contribute any power. It is much easier in summer when the sun is more directly overhead for many more hours. The panels don’t work much if partially shaded…. Consider using a portable panel so you can “chase” any bright spots near your site. You can modify a standard unit so it will work fine fifty feet or more away from your shaded Ollie. This is especially true for your LE1 since you have less built-in capacity both in the batteries and in the roof panels... Here is my 100 watt Renogy panel. This size unit, tilted and directly facing the sun, potentially increases your 240 watts of roof solar power by 40%.

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https://olivertraveltrailers.com/forums/topic/5478-how-to-remote-mount-the-controller-of-a-suitcase-solar-panel-not-inside-the-trailer/

But a 1000 watt gennie (using the onboard converter) charges much much faster than an extra panel ever could….

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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There are not many good “solar” sites in A (RV) loop at  Mt Pisgah. Some sites  can be reserved and some cannot. We normally camp in the summer when we’re looking for shade, but sites A10 and A15 look like better solar sites. The map previously posted should indicate if the site can be reserved. 
 

We’re visiting the lower elevation part of the BRP around Doughton Park NC today.

 

 

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Tundra LE2

 

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If you have a thin foam sleeping pad, bring it along, you can lay it between the mattress and wall to cut the chill that seeps through that area. I really like the blue “egg crate”  ones, but they have skyrocketed in price. $46 on Prime (!), I paid less than $20 for mine locally. And I use it when I am up on the roof, to kneel on.

https://www.walmart.com/ip/Ozark-Trail-Closed-Cell-Foam-Blue-Camp-Sleeping-Pad/634956813

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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20 hours ago, John E Davies said:

Just be sure to run the fridge on propane, and try to do do any “energy hungry” tasks (charging phones, running the microwave) early in the day so the solar can catch up before dark! Don’t start cooking a couple of frozen tv dinners at 6:00 pm!

We had a 1000 watt inverter for awhile, and removed it. I never used a microwave, offgrid. I'd discourage you from doing so, as well. 

I hope you have a beautiful and fun weekend.  

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

 

 

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