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Old 03-13-2016, 05:32 PM   #1
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New tent trailer+power/solar questions

Hi everyone! We just picked up our used 2016 jayco sport 10SD tent trailer yesterday.

We are looking to do some dry camping this summer, for 5-7 days, and looking at running the fridge, and some lights (switching them out to LEDS). We have the standard, 12volt battery.
At the dealorship, they said we could not upgrade the battery, but that a 80 watt solar kit would be the way to go. Do you agree? Is 80 watts the right size?

Also with the solar panel, do you just keep them plugged into the battery all the time, and they top up as they go?

Also, if we were to run the fridge on propane instead, does anyone know how much propane the fridge would need for about a week? I assume our battery still wouldn't last that long?

I'm definitely a newb, so thank you for all your help. I do not know why I find power so mysteriously hard to understand.
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Old 03-13-2016, 06:52 PM   #2
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Plug trailer into power 2 days before you leave and switch fridge to a/c (assuming it's a 3 way fridge) and get it nice and cold.. When you get to campsite, switch it to propane, it should last you the week easily(it's just a small fridge) just keep the door closed as much as possible.. You can always buy a 30lbs propane tank at Costco, switch it with your 20lbs, and then bring the 20lbs'er as a backup..
Switching to led lights will help save power, but the battery you got is probably just the stock/cheap Interstate battery. Dealership lied, you can always upgrade the battery.. 12v is 12 volt.. Even if you went 2-6 volts, you tend to get bit longer on that setup.. Depends on the $$ you want to spend.. In the summer, you probably won't need furnace, so you will save lots of battery juice not running your furnace fan...
Your current battery will have a "amp hour rating" on the label..in your owners manual there will be a list of your appliances with the amps per hour they use to run.. A little bit of math you will be able to do a calculation of how long that appliance can run for.... Furnace fan, fridge on DC, and water pump will be the ones you will need to be concerned with.. Lights will be your smallest draw..
No experience with solar, but, after quick research An 80W can realistically supply between 4 and 5 Amps on a sunny day, for most of the sunlight hours of the day. If we assume that only 1/3 of the day is sunlight hours then it is safe to assume that the panel can supply between 4 and 5 Amps for this period.

Given that there are 24 hours in a day, an 80W panel can effectively run a load of around 1.5A continuously throughout the day/night running at no loss.

Let’s assume that the solar panels are charging a 100A/h battery. You wish to run a 50L Fridge which draws on average 3A, and 2 x LED camp lights which draw 0.25A each when running. You want to run the fridge 24 hours a day, and the camp light for 6 hours each night.

Fridge: 3A x 24h = 72Ah

Lights: 0.25A x 6h = 1.5Ah x 2 lights = 3Ah

Total: 75Ah per day.

Your panels can supply:

4.5A x 8h = 36Ah each day.

Therefore the battery is being discharged by:

75Ah – 36Ah = 39Ah each day.

So you could run your fridge and lights for:

100Ah / 39Ah = 2.5 days without any other form of charge
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Old 03-13-2016, 07:34 PM   #3
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First things first... if you do not have your trailer plugged in, you need to pull the main inline fuse located by the battery. If you do not, the CO sensor, and the fridge circuit board will drain your battery with in a week or 2. Check your batteries water level, not saying that the dealer did not, but if it needs water do not put any in unless you are connected to 110VAC or that water could freeze.

As Skaling said you can add a larger battery or even add one more IDENTICAL (mfr/Ah rating) to the one you have in your trailer. Usually the trailers come with an 85Ah battery which will get you a couple days (without charging) if you watch your consumption close and do not use your heating system. Unless you plan on a lot of dry-camping there would be no need to go with the 6 volt deep cycle batteries, that is unless you add an inverter to watch Tv... If you plan on a lot of dry-camping then I would recommend 250+ watts of SOLAR and 2 6 volt deep cycle batteries.

I do not recommend any SOLAR less than 100 watts. A 50 watt panel will only give you about 2.5 amps and a 100 watt panel about 5 amps... 2.5 amps is not going to get the job done each day.

Again, Welcome to JOF

don
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Old 03-13-2016, 07:57 PM   #4
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Upgrading the battery is more than just getting a larger battery or two or more etc... The ON-Board converter/charger has to be big enough to able to charge your bigger battery bank. If you want to be able to charge a battery for a 50% charge state to a 90% charge state in a quick three hour time frame you will need a converter/charger with enough capacity to be able to provide around 20AMPS DC charge for each battery in your bank.

I suspect the JAYCO 10SD only has a on-board 30AMP DC Output converter/charger and I really doubt it will be a smart mode charging type.

If you went with the two 6VDC golf cart batteries wired in series to give you a 12VDC 220Ah battery setup the minimum converter/charger should be at least a 45 DC AMP system.

You want it also be a smart mode charger system as well.

The two 6VDC golf cart batteries will weigh 62 lbs each and those would have to be mounted on top of your tongue area. The best solution is to move the 20LB tank forward to allow for the battery bank to be between the tank and the front wall of the trailer. You would use right angle metal strips on top of your tongue frame to extent out on each side to support two batteries sitting there.

No way would I ever want to camp off grid without having at least two batteries producing a 12VDC source with the capacity of around 220AHs...

I have room on my POPUP trailer tongue to support four batteries end to end across my trailer tongue...

Roy Ken
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Old 03-13-2016, 08:21 PM   #5
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I originally looked up the user manual for the 2016 jayco sport 10SD tent trailer and it does not list the charge control center mfr/model or charging specifications, but it states it has a smart battery charging system (3 modes). It does say you can add an second battery.. not much other information.

You need to let us know the mfr/model of the charge control system.

Don
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1500 Watt Ramsond PSI, 2 Trojan T145 Batteries (260Ah)
2 - AirSight Wireless IP Cameras (used as rear view cameras)
EnGenius WI-FI extender, D-Link wireless (n) modem
MagicJack Internet Phone
2012 Ford F150XLT, EcoBoost w/3.73
157" Wheel base, HD Towing Package

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Old 03-14-2016, 04:37 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mustang65 View Post
I originally looked up the user manual for the 2016 jayco sport 10SD tent trailer and it does not list the charge control center mfr/model or charging specifications, but it states it has a smart battery charging system (3 modes). It does say you can add an second battery.. not much other information.

You need to let us know the mfr/model of the charge control system.

Don
Where might I find this information?
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Old 03-14-2016, 04:38 PM   #7
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So really... the solution is to never camp withouth hoook ups. Seems WAY easier.
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Old 03-14-2016, 05:12 PM   #8
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That's not true, in fact some of us dont plug in even when there is power at a site

I have a 200 w solar panel and over a peak six hour period every day, I get 10-12 amps per hour ( 60-70 amp charge.)

Keep in kind that if you have a battery rated at 85 amp hours, you should only use 50% of that capacity, or about 42 amps.

42 amps is not a lot if you are out for several days - Hense many folks add multiple batteries to boost their power/ run times
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Old 03-14-2016, 06:37 PM   #9
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I found a PDF brochure showing the JAYCO Sports 10SD having the 12V electrical system with 35-amp, 110V converter...

Page 11/12 of this 2016 BROCHURE PDF under 'COMPARE STANDARD AND OPTIONS'

http://www.rhonesrv.com/fckimages/pr...g_brochure.pdf

It did not list the manf model number however so still don't know if it is a smart mode converter/charger or not...

Roy Ken
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2008 STARCRAFT 14RT OFF-ROAD POPUP with PD9260C and three 85AH 12VDC batteries
2010 F150 FX4 5.4 GAS with 3.73 gears - Super Cab - Towing Package - 2KW Honda EU2000i Gen
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Old 03-15-2016, 06:48 AM   #10
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Try this document... on page 6.6 it lists the modes... still did not locate the max output (amps)


Don
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250Watt Grape Solar Panel, MorningStar MPPT 60 Charge Controller
1500 Watt Ramsond PSI, 2 Trojan T145 Batteries (260Ah)
2 - AirSight Wireless IP Cameras (used as rear view cameras)
EnGenius WI-FI extender, D-Link wireless (n) modem
MagicJack Internet Phone
2012 Ford F150XLT, EcoBoost w/3.73
157" Wheel base, HD Towing Package

Our Solar Album https://www.jaycoowners.com/album.php?albumid=329
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