RV Solar Panel Kits

Eco-Friendly Road-Trips: An Introduction to RV Solar Panel Kits

One of the best ways to connect with nature is by going on trips in your RV. Where you take your RV depends on you and your preferences, but one common worry about trips is losing power. Since you’re outdoors and in a vehicle, your devices can run out of battery charge at any time while on the road. Luckily, with the advancement of technology in terms of generating power, there are now RV solar panels you can use when on the go! 

If you’re new to RV solar panels, you’re in the right place. In this article, we’ll discuss all the basic things you need to know about RV solar panel kits, including their components, benefits, and types available on the market. 

 

What Are RV Solar Panel Kits?

RV solar panel kits are packages designed to provide recreational vehicles (RVs) solar energy solutions. Like any other solar panels, RV solar panels are designed to capture solar energy and convert it into electricity that you can use to power your RV, the appliances inside, and your gadgets. 

RV Power Types

When you take your RV on a trip, some of its essential components will run while others may not. This is mainly because some appliances and devices can’t be supported by your RV batteries alone. To help you better understand this, there are two core types of RV power you’ll need for any road trip: 

  • 12 Volt: This is DC and powers basic RV components like water heaters, lights, fans, radios, USB plugs, and even specifically designed RV refrigerators. These can operate using the RV’s batteries alone.

  • 110 Volt: This is AC and powers large-consuming devices like computers, TVs, air conditioners, DVD players, microwaves, and other common household appliances like coffee makers, hair dryers, and toasters. RV batteries can’t power these and require an external power source like an RV solar system.

Components of an RV Solar System

Components of an RV Solar System

An RV solar system or solar panel kit is composed of five main components: 

  • RV Solar Panels: These use PV cells to collect solar energy and transfer it to the other components so you can use the system as your source of electricity. You can either lay them flat or mount them to get the maximum sun exposure. 
  • Inverter: This transforms the power you collect into DC or AC, depending on your power needs. Generally, batteries produce DC electricity, but if you need to power AC appliances, you can use the inverter.
  • Battery Bank: This is where the collected energy is stored, and without it, it would be impossible for your RV to store power. Although there are different types of batteries you can use, the lithium-ion ones are the most popular ones. 
  • Charge Controller: This is the main component between the solar panels and the battery bank. It controls the rate at which your battery bank charges and prevents it from overcharging. 
  • Wirings: These are what connect the four other components together. They ensure that there’s a proper flow of collected and generated electricity in the system.

 

Benefits of Using Solar Panels on Your RV

Aside from being a renewable and sustainable source of electricity, these solar panel kits offer the following benefits: 

Helps Save Cash and Time

Solar panels help save money while you’re traveling. Since you can use them to power your RV and devices for free, you don’t have to worry about running out of battery and paying just to charge while on the road. 

Additionally, since you can store the generated electricity in the battery bank, you don’t have to wait for the solar panels to collect energy. Moreover, since you can bring them with you in your RV, you can charge the batteries even when on the road so you don’t have to stop and wait for it to charge. 

Eco-Friendly and Safe

Solar energy is an abundant resource that can be collected and used without compromising anything. You’re not breaking any quality control measures or safety standards. This means that RV solar panels are guaranteed safe not only for the environment but for people as well. 

Aside from that, unlike RV generators which are noisy and usually banned in some campgrounds, RV solar panels are quiet. You can use it without making any noise or causing any disturbance.

Off Grid Flexibility

With a solar panel system, you can stop and set up camp even in remote areas. This way, you can enjoy an amazing time with nature without worrying about how you’ll keep your lights and heater on. Since they can be either mounted on the roof of your RV or set up on a different flat surface, you can charge and use solar energy anywhere. 

Disaster Ready

If you’re usually camping or going on trips in areas that are prone to disasters like hurricanes or tornadoes, having a solar panel kit of your own would be extremely useful. When getting stuck in such a situation, you and your family can still be safe with the power you can get from the solar panel system. With this, you don’t have to worry about finding a charging station during and after a disaster. 

 

Types of RV Solar Kits on the Market

The types of RV solar kits are based on how you want to install the system. You have two options or types for this: 

Roof-Mounted or Fixed

This is the type where the solar panels are permanently installed and wired to the RV. With this, you don’t have to worry about setting up the system every time you go on a trip or when you need it. If your RV has enough roof space for some solar panels, this is a good option. 

Portable

This is the type where you set up the solar panels in a nearby sunny area whenever you need to use or charge the battery bank. The solar panels will collect the energy and store it as electricity in the battery so you can use it later. Regarding wattage, portable solar panel systems usually have lower or limited wattage so you might want to get a kit with multiple solar panels. 

 

Conclusion

Since charging your appliances and electronic devices is one of the top worries and priorities when it comes to going on road trips, a free and easy source of power is ideal. This is where RV solar panels come in useful. With RV solar panel kits, you can enjoy an eco-friendly trip wherever you go. 

If you want to look at some kits, you can check out our solar RV kit collection. We offer kits that you can either mount on the roof of your RV or one that you can set up in a sunny area!