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Managing RV Electrical Power


While dry camping ALL the electricity you use will be coming from the RV battery as 120 VAC and 12 VDC. It is important to have a sufficient quantity of batteries but more critical to be able to recharge what power has been used. Here is what to manage:


  • Use built-in meter to check battery volts daily.


  • Occasionally check amp draw on various appliances.


  • Cure or disconnect small constant phantom loads (see sizing a solar system).


  • Observe solar input amps at noon while solar is charging.


  • Use a DIGITAL-MULTI TESTER: Note charging volts at converter, alternator, or inverter-charger up to 14 volts.


  • Maintain and run generator on occasion activates transfer switch.


  • Check solar panel location for shadows, loose wires and roof fastener screws. Wipe panels clean with Windex.


We recommend the following equipment for complete electrical independence in your RV so you may use lights, microwave oven, vacuum cleaner, satellite TV and essential 12 and 120 volt appliances for comfortable living. The user of a self-regenerating solar charging system must understand the basic and metering equipment, then manage the electricity used and ultimately replaced into the battery.

BATTERIES:  Four GOLF CART BATTERIES are an excellent bank. If you have a big rig or use electricity freely, then we suggest 6 or 8 batteries.

SOLAR SYSTEM:  Two 4.5 amp solar panels meets most RVers' needs for 12 volt power. Heavy users use four panels. Metering with the Digital Monitor Panel will show the amount used and solar charged.

INVERTER MAKES 120 VOLT AC:  A 1500 watt unit with high output charger will do what ever you need to run. Larger 2000 or 2500 watt models have a slightly higher efficiency when running big loads, but cost more. The REMOTE CONTROL panel is the secret to conserving power while dry camping. Located inside the RV, it allows convenient and effective control to save power that might be lost needlessly. The built-in charger has the ability to recharge from the generator when you over-use or when solar doesn't provide enough during bad weather.

A CATALYTIC HEATER  will keep you warm without using any battery power. A forced air furnace can consume a battery full of power on a cold night. It is better to conserve on power wasted for air circulation and use it for lights, TV and water pump. A catalytic heater is 100% efficient and also saves on total propane consumed.

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