Our 2009 trip was a test for the battery system and while the house battery bank was lots big enough (440 Amp Hours) the monitoring and charging system was lacking.
As I'm not a full time cruiser it is not necessary for me to have enough solar capacity to run the entire system 24/7 so the physical size and $$ controlled selection of the panels. So 2 panels with 85 watts of power each got mounted on top of the Bimini. The charge controller is a EWC-30. 4 golf cart batteries to gives me a house bank of 440 amp hours capacity. I will monitor the system with a Linklite battery monitoring system. Shore power charging is accomplished by a Triplite RV 3012 with a ac output capacity of 3000 watts and a selectable DC charge capacity of over 100 amps. This unit also includes a automatic switch which turns on the inverter when shore power is disconnected. My hope is that the solar panels will slow the discharge of the house bank enough to allow a week on the hook without running the engine. The engine alternator has a output of only 65 amps. Our 2010 vacation will be the test. We should be almost energy self sufficient. Especially since I replaced the &*(^%&* noisy old fridge that hummed and hummed and used way too much power.
Also I have replaced most of the light bulbs with LED units that use about 1/10th of the power. We are a green machine!
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