I am trying to figure out the house battery and the solar charger.
What I want to do is to install a house battery to power computer, recharge phone, and recharge iPod Nano. I would like the house battery to be getting charged from the engine when we are driving. At some later date I would like to add solar. There is an existing plug in the back of the truck. This plug, an inverter, is fed by the starter battery.
The first stage needs these items, I think :
Dual Battery Isolation Kit with 140A Smart Battery Isolator
Optima 8014-045-FFP YellowTop Group 34/78 Deep Cycle Battery
Cobra CPI 480 400-Watt 12-Volt DC to 120-Volt AC Power Inverter with 5-Volt USB
12-Volt Battery Charger Maintainer and Tester
What I want to figure out:
- “The maximum capacity while engine is running and clutch not depressed is 115 VAC/400W. The maximum capacity when the clutch is depressed is 115VAC/100W.” You have to push a switch in the cab to choose. Seems like I should switch out the existing inverter and disable that choice switch.
- how the hell do I hook up everything? Or who do I get to install the system?
- where do I store the battery? It is 10″x6.75″x7.75″
- battery needs to be accessed to hook up solar panels.
Then, I would like to add the solar capabilities with this equipment:
130 Watt Portable RV and Marine Folding Solar Panel Kit with Built In Charge Controller
The first stage would cost about $500 for materials, with electrical re-wiring around $500. The solar panels cost around $600 for the economy set. So, $1,000 for the first stage. I already have $233.54 saved up. I am on the way.
UPDATE : after realizing that this was way too complicated for me I opted for a Goal Zero Yeti 400 . It was a faithful companion and helper for 5 years. Then I went even smaller to just an outdoor solar panel.