Jayco battery setup

  • 23 Tips For New Jayco Camper Trailer Owners
  • 12 Volt Jayco Caravan Accessories for Off the Grid Free Camping
  • Jayco now selling solar ready travel trailers – Here is what you need to know
  • 12 volt accessories for Jayco Caravan & Camper Trailer for Free Camping and Staying off the grid
  • Full Off-Grid System For a Jayco Hawk Outback
  • Caravan solar: You’re doing it wrong!
  • Is It Bad to Leave your RV Plugged in All the Time?
  • 23 Tips For New Jayco Camper Trailer Owners

    What could be better than relaxing and enjoying nature? Keeping life simple is the fastest way to happiness. But, sometimes adding a bit of creature comfort is a good idea. It can help enhance your camping experience and create perfect memories. But, you need more than a caravan to have a self-sustainable off grid caravan trip. What better way to improve your off the grid free camping experience, than with some 12 Volt Jayco Caravan accessories. Jayco Caravan Accessories Before you choose your caravan accessories, you should first look at what time of the year you are travelling.

    As well as where you plan to visit, and how. The time of the year and climate are likely to affect how much power you will use. Are you planning to go very remote and off the beaten path for an extended period? Then you are more likely to heavily rely on using power for fridges, water pumps, lighting, TVs etc. The longer you plan to be away, you should have more: Solar panels Backup generators. Solar Panels One of the essential items that every caravan needs for off-grid free camping is solar panels.

    Solar panels let you power your entire caravan with a renewable energy source. Epic forests, divine beaches, and white sand flowing provide the perfect background. But, the last thing you want to worry about is making sure that you can keep your food in the fridge cool. Or that your lights are going to go out at night. What is Solar Power? It is a very cost-effective way of going off the grid.

    It allows you go to anywhere off the beaten path for extended periods. Having a reliable solar panel power supply is rather important when planning to go off the grid free camping. It allows you to use a large range of electrical appliances.

    Which helps add comfort to your trip, as well as enhance the caravanning lifestyle and keep you safe on the road. For any energy system, the most important component is the battery.

    Every other component such as a battery charger, inverter or energy management equipment works with the battery. A solar system provides an alternative energy source to a more traditional source such as a generator or alternator. Previously, most people would only use a generator to charge their battery when they went off the grid. But, over recent years, as technology has improved.

    It has also become more affordable. Solar panels are quickly replacing generators as an alternative power source. A solar system will keep topping up your battery. Having a solar system, allows you to be self-sufficient and be able to indefinitely charge your battery for as long as you wish to stay off the grid.

    With a generator, once you run out of fuel, you can no longer charge your battery. A disadvantage of solar energy is that it quickly uses power for any continuously run high energy consumption appliances. Or an oven microwave, stove, air-conditioner, hair dryer, washing machine, or any appliance with a heating element on solar power. Conventional generators Produce electricity by using petrol or diesel to power a motor which attaches to an alternator.

    Inverter generators Use advanced electronic circuitry. The output is AC, which then gets converted to DC. The current is then inverted to clean AC power.

    Sound confusing? What it means is that it is suited for electronic equipment which is highly sensitive such as a laptop or TV. Inverter generators are better for noise.

    As well as the quality of power output, fuel efficiency, weight, size and portability, as well as parallel operation. Conventional generators are better for affordability and providing a maximum power output. For their running time, both conventional generators and inverter generators perform about the same.

    The Perfect Solar Panel Solution The ideal situation is to have a mix of both fixed and portable solar panels. This lets you set up your caravan in the shade under a tree, and then you can lay out your portable panels or solar blankets in the sun. You can choose either a folding and portable panel which can be moved.

    Or a fixed solar panel which is mounted on your caravan. Solar panels provide a continuous power source as long as the sun is shining, which makes them an ideal solution for long term off the grid camping.

    Depending on your power requirements, there are three capacities available. This lets you move the panels between vehicles and into a sunny location. Rather than fixed panels which are unable to charge if you are parked in the shade. It includes a heavy-duty bag to make it easy to store when not in use.

    If you need extra power, you can even daisy-chain them if you need to increase your power capacity in the future. This can be done by using an optional cable kit. Specs: Dimensions Open : mm x mm x 70 mm Dimensions Folded mm x mm x mm Weight: You only have to install it once then it will always work.

    It makes a great option if you are only going off the grid for a short period. Or if you will be able to charge it daily.

    Specs: Weight: 7. You can mount solar panels to your caravan roof, have portable panels, or a combination of both. For times where there is no sun during the winter, or you have parked in the shade, a solar blanket provides a great alternative.

    RedArc Solar Blanket A RedArc solar blanket is a perfect backup for whenever you are camping in a shady location, or when it is overcast during the winter, with no sun in sight. RedArc has a range of different Solar Blankets. The solar blanket does as its name says, it provides power from the sun. It folds into a small bag, making it easy to pack and store, instead of having to struggle with a large solar panel. When compared to a glass folding panel, the SunPower blanket is about a third of the weight and has higher power output.

    12 Volt Jayco Caravan Accessories for Off the Grid Free Camping

    Here we go: 1. Hang the upper part of the door flat against the ceiling How you hang the top part of the door makes a BIG difference when you wind down the roof of your camper.

    This was a mistake we made: If you leave the door hanging down at the entrance when you attach the little clips… …then it can get in the way when you lower the roof. This can make the lid hard to close, or even bend the clips.

    But if you push the metal plate up first? The door folds flat to the roof: This makes the roof easier to close and gives more space for bedding and lets us keep our Ever Rest Memory Foam mattress topper on the bed when we pack down 2. This can cause one of the lifting arms to pop out and really ruin your holiday.

    Water pooled on the sink. But the big one? The roof was noticeably leaning to one side the whole time I was worrying that it would bend the telescopic lifter arms And… not having a 3-way fridge level can stop it from working properly.

    You can get them yourselves with some aluminium poles and rubber stoppers from Bunnings. But to be honest? Collapses seem to occur during set-up… 7.

    Double check that the roof clips are undone before you start winding up the roof of your camper One of the most common causes of cable failure is forgetting to undo one of the catches and starting to wind up the roof.

    Resist the temptation to keep unwinding because the cables will get slack in them and may not spool properly when you go to wind it up again Use the clips to close the roof… and give the handle a GENTLE turn to take any slack off the cable 9. Want to make the bed end flys quicker to set-up, with less poles, and less guy ropes to trip over?

    Or worse: If you forget to turn off the lights it can cause a fire. Full credit to the person we bought our Swan from….

    Jayco now selling solar ready travel trailers – Here is what you need to know

    Caravan Volt Systems When it comes to caravan electrics, there are volt systems and 12volt systems. Air conditioning, for example uses about 60 amps per hour, compared with 0. The volt system is also known as mains power.

    When you stay at a caravan park and you plug in at a powered site, you are using volt mains power. All volt electrical work is covered by Australian regulations and can only be worked on by a qualified and certified electrician. This is not the work for DIYers. Caravan 12 Volt Systems 12 volt systems are powered from an onboard battery, and provide power for the water pump, as well as strip lighting and a toilet pump.

    The twelve volt system runs everything that uses low wattage. Batteries At the centre of the 12 volt system is a battery, which provides power. Batteries can be charged via an Anderson plug connected to mains electricity, via a multi stage charger or via solar panels.

    12 volt accessories for Jayco Caravan & Camper Trailer for Free Camping and Staying off the grid

    The most common battery is a 12 volt deep cycle battery. A deep cycle battery is sufficient for the traveler who stays in caravan parks most of the time and uses a powered site. An AGM battery charges more easily and will last a little longer than a standard deep cycle battery.

    It does cost a bit more than a deep cycle battery. Standard Deep cycle batteries for caravan and camping are designed to discharge a consistent amount of energy for longer, unlike a typical car battery which delivers high energy or shorter bursts. Another option is a lithium-ion battery. These batteries are considerably more expensive, much lighter in weight, and they provide more consistent voltage for 90 percent of discharge.

    Full Off-Grid System For a Jayco Hawk Outback

    For maximum performance, it is important to use the correct charger, if you are using a lithium-ion battery. To get the best battery performance and ensure you get the longest life, batteries need to be checked regularly and charged properly. You can damage a battery if it is under or over charged. The other important thing to understand about batteries is that the energy you get from a standard battery will deplete as the battery uses energy.

    For example, if you have a ah standard deep cycle battery, it supplies 1 amp of energy foror 2 amps of energy for 50 hours. Unlike volt systems, which can only be worked on by a qualified electrician, 12 volt systems can be worked on by non electricians. If you are working on a 12 volt system, make sure to use electrical cable of the right size.

    As we travel around this country, talking to other caravanners, they all share similar experiences.

    Caravan solar: You’re doing it wrong!

    At best, modern solar panels will convert about 20 percent of the available energy falling on them into electrical power. Most new caravans, motorhomes and, to some extent, campers, have solar panels mounted on the roof or other flat surface. In Australia, depending on the time of year, the sun will be at a less than ideal angle to the surface of our solar panels and we would be lucky to achieve 14 percent efficiency.

    Advertisements So, you might wonder, how does this translate into real world experience?

    Is It Bad to Leave your RV Plugged in All the Time?

    Our particular caravan has watts of solar panels mounted on the roof and, in perfect conditions, can theoretically output up to 30 amps. In winter, in the southern states, even in full sunlight, our W panels were lucky to produce watts.

    Now consider we are using power at the same time as we are charging. As a result, we could be putting less than a net of 10 amps of charge per hour back into our batteries. Introduce some cloud cover or shadows falling onto the panels and we can get down as low as just five amps net charging at any one time during the day. Five amps is not a lot when charging Ah of AGM batteries. In winter, we might get six hours of daylight but only four of those hours, between 11am and 2am, would the sun be at an angle that comes close to ideal for producing useful power.

    Conservatively, we might get a total of 20 amp hours of charge over the entire day. The final nail in the coffin is that we rarely park our caravan in open sunlight. Usually we are camped under trees or in a valley.

    Even a slight shadow cast by a roof-mounted air conditioner over part of the solar panel can cut its output in half or more. Advertisements The reality is that with all these variables taken into consideration, we would realistically be getting just amp hours of net charge per day and this is simply not enough. Fortunately, all is not lost. There is one very simple thing you can do that will dramatically increase your ability to recharge your batteries. The typical electrical system of a modern caravan or RV showing V When our van was built, we asked the manufacturer to include a separate Anderson plug that was wired into the existing solar panels.

    This allows us to plug in an external solar panel s that can be placed in direct sunlight to augment the roof-mounted panels.

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