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Old 05-12-2017, 01:12 PM   #1
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Help with Solar, did i make a bad choice

Any help would be appreciated, I think we bit off more than we can chew. We have a Jayco white hawk pre wire for Zamp solar. We ordered the solar unit and it just plugs in..however we have one marine battery and we have been told it will take forever to charge it. So we thought we would go with the two 6v golf cart batteries. Is this an easy transition or am I in over my head? I asked my trailer guy and he said $300 to wire it.
Should I pay him or try it myself...we are heading to Yosemite this summer and would like some electricity
Maybe I should have bought those generators.

Thank you
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Old 05-12-2017, 02:14 PM   #2
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"... it will take forever to charge it..."

That is if your battery is already discharged.

The idea is that you start with a fully charged battery when you leave home + trickle charge from the tow vehicle when underway.

The solar panels are to replace the electicity you use while camping.

Much quieter than any genset.

-------------

Personally, we boondock well clear of others. In a well-treed area. 45 minutes per day of a 900W genset covers all our electrical needs. YMMV
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Old 05-12-2017, 03:14 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MDeWolf View Post
Any help would be appreciated, I think we bit off more than we can chew. We have a Jayco white hawk pre wire for Zamp solar. We ordered the solar unit and it just plugs in..however we have one marine battery and we have been told it will take forever to charge it. So we thought we would go with the two 6v golf cart batteries. Is this an easy transition or am I in over my head? I asked my trailer guy and he said $300 to wire it.
Should I pay him or try it myself...we are heading to Yosemite this summer and would like some electricity
Maybe I should have bought those generators.

Thank you
If your "trailer guy" wants $300 to wire your 2 6 volt batteries together, he is soaking you. You can use the cables you already have connect your battery to your trailer and buy one of these for less than $10 to wire your two 6 volts together. Wire in series to get 12 volts.

2 guage battery cable:

And it shouldn't take "forever" to charge your marine battery. It is pretty much like any other battery (but it won't last as long and probably doesn't have a high amp hour rating). So you probably made a good choice going with 2 6 volt deep cycle batteries. No worries there. And wiring to 6 volts together is very easy.

However, if your trailer guy is talking about wiring your solar unit, that is a bit different. First of all, you will need some sort of solar controller which costs money (solar panels do not connect directly to your battery without a controller). Then you need wiring from the panels to the controller and from the controller to the battery. Depending upon your system, $300 doesn't seem to expensive for that kind of work.
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Old 05-12-2017, 03:55 PM   #4
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Here's what a $300 wiring job will get you:

Save your money and do it yourself.
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Old 05-12-2017, 04:28 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by MDeWolf View Post
Any help would be appreciated, I think we bit off more than we can chew. We have a Jayco white hawk pre wire for Zamp solar. We ordered the solar unit and it just plugs in..however we have one marine battery and we have been told it will take forever to charge it. So we thought we would go with the two 6v golf cart batteries. Is this an easy transition or am I in over my head? I asked my trailer guy and he said $300 to wire it.
Should I pay him or try it myself...we are heading to Yosemite this summer and would like some electricity
Maybe I should have bought those generators.

Thank you
You know I have virtually no electrical knowledge.I made the battery change also. You will need I think two new battery boxes for the 6 volts. Maybe 2 longer battery cables. There are several u tube videos on RV battery wiring.I could do a lot with 300 bucks in my pocket not the RV dealer.We did the solar change last year. I think once those batteries get charged. Your good to go.I never worry about low batteries anymore. Happy Trails
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Old 05-12-2017, 04:30 PM   #6
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I should have looked at your post first!Much better than mine.
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Old 05-12-2017, 05:15 PM   #7
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Maybe $300 includes the cost of two 6v batteries, one wire and the labor?
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Old 05-12-2017, 05:22 PM   #8
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6 volt batteries

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Maybe $300 includes the cost of two 6v batteries, one wire and the labor?
Bought them at wall mart Phoenix 2 golf car batteries under 100 each!
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Old 05-12-2017, 05:34 PM   #9
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Bought them at wall mart Phoenix 2 golf car batteries under 100 each!
My question was for the OP
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Old 05-14-2017, 07:15 AM   #10
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Need more info to really answer your questions.. How big (watts) is the solar panel you bought? what kind of charge controller did you get? Going from 1-12 volt battery to 2-6's is a good thing but actually will take longer to charge as you have more power available which means you will end up using more.. (sort of like if you build it they will come) Your charging system does not care how big your battery bank is it just keeps charging till the voltage hits a predetermined point.
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