Gear, Photos & Videos, Trips

Solar Install and Test Trip To The Mountains

Hello dear followers. I recently completed the last (I think) major update to the truck. I finally added a 180-Watt solar panel and a 20-Amp solar charge controller to the electric system. Until now the electric system relied on a 110-ah deep-cycle battery to power mostly our fridge and lights. That battery gets recharged when we drive, and discharged when we are stopped. That way we had less than a day of full autonomy, then I had to run the engine of the truck for 20 minutes to half an hour to recharge the leisure battery. I would do that usually morning and evening, and even sometimes around mid-day. Now as soon as the sun comes up, the solar system starts putting energy in the leisure battery. Quickly the panel supplies all the power necessary so that the fridge doesn’t draw from the battery at all. The result is that now, at the end of the day, the battery is fully charged and ready to power our system during the evening and at night. The next morning the solar panel will quickly restore the charge into the battery, so that the battery now is kept mostly at full charge most of the time. That will extend its lifespan since it no longer gets so discharged and partially recharged as before.

To test the whole system we headed to my favourite remote campsite in the mountains west of town, at the end of a 4WD trail. As you can see on the photos the landscapes are beautiful, and we are guarantied peace and tranquility. We spent three nights there, and two and a half days. The weather was the usual clear and sunny, so the solar system had no trouble supplying the energy necessary to keep the fridge running. The fridge draws about 7 Amps and the panel can supply close to 10 Amps in full sun. Even with the sun low to the horizon I could see around 2 Amps going through the system, which will go to recharge the battery between two cycles of the fridge compressor. We could go hiking a few hours knowing that the fridge was running on free energy and our food would be cold when we would get back to the truck. We had a great time, saw some wildlife, and enjoyed hours of calm and silence, what I know call “Anti-Social Distancing X-treme” 🙂 Enjoy the photos. I also uploaded a new video with the technical background to understand how a solar system works. Don’t forget to LIKE & COMMENT!

1 thought on “Solar Install and Test Trip To The Mountains”

  1. Looks beautiful out there! Congrats on getting the solar system installed. I’ve had mine on for a while and enjoy the peace of mind that the system provides.

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