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Converting Your RV to Solar Power
"There's never been a better time to convert your RV to solar power"
By: Sean Burton
There's never been a better time to convert to solar power. North Americans are only too aware of the ramifications of the continued use of non-renewable energy sources. Global warming and greenhouse gases are terms understood by even the youngest of citizens. The possible impact of ignoring the warnings could have devastating consequences for future generations. "Solar how to" is on the minds of many social and environmentally-conscious individuals.
Environmental concerns extend beyond the front door. RV travelers have become increasingly aware of the benefits of converting to solar power. Many have become traveling ambassadors for the cause. They stand to set a new trend when it comes to relying less on hydro-electric energy and more upon natural sunlight when traveling.
- The number one reason that RV vacationers are reluctant to go solar is the notion of cost.
- The second is the perceived hassle involved. Both of these may be misconceptions. RV owners may find on closer review that the cost is not as great as believed. The long term savings will likely far outweigh the initial cost of conversion. Plus, the greater travel options may decrease the hassle involved in RV traveling.
Solar power is energy generated from the sun. Solar how-to for RV's involves the placement of solar panels atop the roof of the vehicle. The panels reflect the sun's rays and help convert it into energy. This energy can produce heat, electricity and even cooling.
The benefits of converting an RV to solar power are tremendous. Just a few of them include:
- Less reliance upon access to an electrical outlet. One of the first things RV travelers look at when planning a trip itinerary is electrical accessibility. Many campgrounds have limited numbers of sites with electricity. This can sometimes make it challenging to find a convenient travel route. Conversion to solar power eliminates the need to plan travel around electrical access. Solar power opens up more campground options. It also makes outback RV travel a possibility.
RV Solar Systems
- RV solar systems can be tailored to fit needs. Power needs differ according to RV size, number of appliances, etc. Some travelers may wish to simply run an engine battery on solar power. Others may decide to convert all parts of the vehicle, including hot water heaters and kitchen appliances to solar energy. All of these needs can be accommodated by installing the right kinds and number of solar panels.
- Solar systems can be expanded as needs change. RV owners may want to start by converting battery power to solar energy. As other appliances are added or switched over, more or larger solar panels can be added to accommodate the expansion.
- Cost savings. Total savings will depend upon the extent to which an RV is used. Frequent travelers stand to save the most money in the long run. Travelers who spend weeks or months traveling each year stand to save thousands of dollars. The savings realized are twofold. First, reliance upon outside energy sources is reduced. Plus, the need to pay extra for campsites with electrical outlets is eliminated.
Almost any and every make and model of RV can be converted to solar energy. The age of the RV doesn't matter. However, newer vehicles may be more easily converted than older models. The type of conversion kit needed will depend upon the size of the RV. The number of appliances and the size of the battery will also play a critical role.
Solar how to kits for RV's are available where RV's are sold. Kits are also available online. It's important to determine exactly what your particular needs are before you purchase a solar power kit. It's important to have your solar kit installed by a professional unless you have experience in this area. Incorrect installation may reduce performance level or cause malfunction within your RV.
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