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Old 12-14-2015, 03:17 PM   #1
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Solar inverter question

My wife and I are considering a campground host position at Maroon Bells in Colorado for the summer. For electric, they have solar only and say that I will need to purchase an inverter to connect to the trailer. I am not familiar with solar or inverters. Is this an expensive piece of equipment? Where can I purchase one? What is involved? Will I only be able to run DC using the inverter or can I run the 110 outlets and equipment as well?
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Old 12-14-2015, 03:44 PM   #2
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An inverter converts DC to AC. In the case of a solar panel installation, an inverter is used to convert the DC voltage of the batteries (typically 12 V, but not always) to 120 V, 60 Hz AC.

To be comfortable in your AS and use all of your resources, I would consider purchasing an inverter that will create enough power to run your AS. So that means you'll need at least a 3300 W inverter (110 V * 30 A). You can find relatively inexpensive converters from Home Depot, such as Power Bright 12-Volt DC to AC 3500-Watt Power Inverter-PW3500-12 - The Home Depot. For $315 your getting something that will probably suffice for the summer. There are different types of inverter technology with pure-sine being the most favored for permanent installations and where folks are concerned about electrical noise. This inexpensive inverter does not produce a pure sinewave, but it's close enough for most tasks.

The other consideration is that this inverter assumes the batteries that you are connecting to are 12 V, so you'll need to confirm this with the campground. If their batteries are running at 24, 36, or 48 V then the inverter you will need will be probably be more expensive.

These inverters are also not designed to be exposed outdoors, so you'll need to make sure the inverter is placed in safe environment (protected from rain). You'll also need an adapter to connect your 30 A AS cable to connect to this inverter as well.
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Old 12-14-2015, 06:38 PM   #3
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Alano,
Thanks for the info-exactly what I was looking for
Mark
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Old 12-15-2015, 09:56 AM   #4
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Flying you may need more than an inverter. You may want to ask them for some type of diagram of the system that you are going to hook into. Are you going to be hooking a set of panels directly? A system that has panels and batteries for storage where you would hook to the batteries? Distance from both to your trailer? If it is panels only what are you going to do for storage as when the sun goes down without batteries you won't have any power. If they have batteries how much capacity. Hopefully they have all of this information available. Post it here and those who use solar can help you sort it out.

Great spot to be a campground host by the way.
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Old 12-15-2015, 10:04 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyingfishy View Post
My wife and I are considering a campground host position at Maroon Bells in Colorado for the summer. For electric, they have solar only and say that I will need to purchase an inverter to connect to the trailer. I am not familiar with solar or inverters. Is this an expensive piece of equipment? Where can I purchase one? What is involved? Will I only be able to run DC using the inverter or can I run the 110 outlets and equipment as well?
We just visited Maroon Bells this summer while visiting our daughter in the Denver area. They are gorgeous! Hope this works out for you. Post lots of pictures. 😃



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