Let's Talk Solar Panels, Batteries, Fridges, and off Grid Options

Discussion in 'Fred's House of Pancakes' started by PhanOp, Aug 30, 2019.

  1. PhanOp

    PhanOp New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2019
    2
    1
    0
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Vehicle:
    2011 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    Ok, so I am considering some options.

    I would really like a way to keep my "fridge" running through the night and the day. I will be using an Alpicool C20 as an example which is what I got for a really sweet deal! I'm trying to pull off a full 24 hours.

    I have seen examples of this as a main setup. Solar panel on top of the Prius (preferably flat and flexible to keep down on weight typically 100w) where that is converted and run down to the battery in the trunk then that is coupled or directly connected to another battery like a universal battery or Prius battery of some sort and then a sine wave 2000w converter is run from that battery where you can run power to your fridge or whatever else you want. Let's keep in mind that there is usually a fuse box somewhere between here and proper grounding.

    If this is the "suggested" way to go...why?

    My thought was, why not get a:
    Universal Power Group 12V 100Ah Solar Wind AGM SLA DEEP Cycle VRLA Battery 12V 24V 48V

    A solar flex solar panel on top of the car and then run it straight to the new universal battery and then use an inverter from there without having to run through your main battery? Is there a benefit or any loss to running it through your main battery int he trunk?

    Also this was a possible solution I considered since you would already be spending so much money on converting and buying a battery, etc. Why not just buy a
    SUAOKI Solar Generators, G500 Portable Power Station 500Wh Camping Generator Lithium Battery Pack Power Supply with 110V/300W (600W Peak) Pure Sine Wave AC Inverter for CPAP Emergency Outdoor

    And then just add the flex solar panel and boom no conversion needed. This is an isolated lithium battery that is also good under extreme heat conditions.

    Thoughts? Concerns? Protests?
     
  2. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2012
    3,796
    1,402
    0
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Well... There's many factors to consider... You could have a seperate system or a connected system... The solar panels are good for keeping your systems topped off, but not at powering a fridge. But simply with the car on and in ready mode you will also keep the 12v system charged up as the car will be automatically firing up the engine periodically.

    If you hook an inverter direct to your 12v battery in the car it's generally reccomended to keep the inverter size to 1200 watts or less, as a 2000 watt inverter will cause undo strain on the existing system.

    As for putting a whole bunch of solar panels on your roof, that's not going to generate enough electricity to keep up if you're using 2000 watts.

    Lastly, buying pre-packaged products is going to be way more expensive and you'll realize far less impressive performance... So it's really about breaking down every part of the system and buying the best gear for the lowest price.

    There's a lot to all that but most important part is keep your needs super simple so the solutions can be built in a super simple way as well. Over time you can upgrade the system to boost performance, but you'll realize way more success if you start out as small and simple as possible.
     
  3. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2018
    3,375
    3,310
    1
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    Post some power consumption data for the fridge. That’s your starting point. Once you know how much power it needs in a typical day, you’ll have a guideline for how many panels you’ll need to feed it.
     
  4. PhanOp

    PhanOp New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2019
    2
    1
    0
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Vehicle:
    2011 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    Alpicool C20 Power Consumption Data:

    In Eco mode, set to -20, it averaged about 18 watts an hour, using about 447 watts in 24 hours. In Eco mode, set to -10, it averaged about 10 watts an hour, using about 240 watts in 24 hours. In Eco mode, set to -5, it averaged about 6 watts an hour, using about 144 watts in 24 hours.

    I'm also considering two batteries at this point.

    The
    Optima Batteries 8171-767 (DS46B24R) YellowTop Prius Battery
    And the...
    Universal Power Group 12V 100Ah Solar Wind AGM SLA DEEP Cycle VRLA Battery 12V 24V 48V
     
  5. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    9,070
    6,623
    0
    Location:
    Indiana, USA
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    You've got some unit confusion in post #4. A watt is already a rate of energy consumption; the dimension of inverse time is built in. The kind of figure you will need to look for will look like watt-hours per hour, or per 24 hours, or what have you. You can, of course, simplify n watt-hours per hour to simply n plain old watts, which would be a statement of the consumption as a steady average, with no 'hours' left in the expression at all (as the hours-per-hour neatly cancel in that case).
     
  6. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2012
    3,796
    1,402
    0
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Don't buy Yellow top... Many times a year people come on here saying they replaced their 12v and now car doesn't work. The problem isn't the car, it's the criminals running yellowtop who refuse to do anything other that try to resell defective batteries. Here's more info on what's wrong with them:

    YellowTop_Criminals.png
     
  7. PhanOp

    PhanOp New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2019
    2
    1
    0
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Vehicle:
    2011 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    Wow! Thank you so much for the tip! That would have been terrible :( Any battery recommendations?
     
Loading...