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Old 01-11-2023, 12:32 PM   #1
bbaluski
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Default Which solar is best?

My husband is now using a CPAP machine and going off grid just got harder. Would like to add a solar suitcase to my 2003, 5230. I have a 2 battery bank. Any suggestions on size, brand, and ease of use. I don't want to go roof because I park in the shadiest spots.
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Old 01-14-2023, 12:06 AM   #2
Leisure Time Larry
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I've been running a CPAP for a decade. Just don't run the humidifier, heated tube, etc. while boondocking. If his machine has a way to run off of a DC cigarette lighter type power source by purchasing an adapter cable or something, then that is more efficient than having to run some type of inverter for it.

Renogy is a reputable brand. It's easiest to get a suitcase system with charge controller and wires that you can just clip to your battery.

As for the size, how much power do you normally consume? How do you normally charge your batteries? If you're a big consumer get the bigger suitcase. If not, get the smaller one.

Good luck!
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Old 01-17-2023, 03:58 PM   #3
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Default Batteries

Thanks Larry, I have a second question. Is it worth it to change out my old Lead acid for LiFePo4 batteries?
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Old 01-17-2023, 06:48 PM   #4
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The internet seems to agree that the only negative to the switch is the upfront cost, otherwise they are superior in almost every way.
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Old 01-22-2023, 11:46 AM   #5
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Suitcase is smart/ GREAT for hot, still air weather, but beware being under trees in windy or stormy/ bad weather.
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Old 07-27-2023, 09:24 PM   #6
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I think replacing old lead-acid batteries with LiFePo4 batteries will add to the cost.
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Old 11-28-2023, 08:47 PM   #7
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If you change to lithium you have to consider some other costs. You need to upgrade your chargers to get your new lithium batteries to the higher voltage. There is the standard battery charger in the fuse/breaker box. You may also do alternator charging that will also need to go up in voltage to support lithium. Solar controller will need to support the battery change.

You might want to get a solar generator. A lot of them will support CPAP. We have a Bluetti and a Jackery and both work well. You will need to size them for your estimated load. The other advantage is they are portable which is very handy when needed. We charge them while driving or at the camp spot with a folding solar panel.
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Old 12-09-2023, 08:54 PM   #8
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Default Our solar plans

Bought several Rich Solar panels and an hybrid 3000 watt inverter. Got one of the 3 200 watt panels installed. The invert runs off 24 volts so we bought 4 200 ah 12.8 volt Power Queen lithium batteries. Planning on wiring them in series and parallel. Should work nice. We want to try to run the roof AC off grid. Also we use an induction cook top, griddle, instant pot and a coffee roaster. But not at the same time. Iím currently using 2 100 Ah Lion Safari 12.8 volt lithium batteries for the house batteries. I upgraded the converter to charge the lithium to 14.2 in three stages. Planning on keeping these Safari batteries for the 12 volt stuff.
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