Following a recent five-day trip aboard our trawler where we had to frequently start up the genset to provide electricity to the 115 volt AC freezer to maintain temperatures, I began to mull over options. We put in an excess of ninety hours on the vessel generator in only five days; time for another oil change! I put in an inverter soon thereafter and that improved the run time for the generator drastically, but there was still work to be completed. I nonetheless needed to keep the batteries fully charged to operate the inverter. Then it occurred to me, why not explore solar panels for use aboard our yacht. Solar panels have been successfully utilized since the mid 1950s, originally utilized in manned space exploration. They have been dropping in cost since roughly 2004 when their popularity really went up. And now with the Green pressure going on, solar panels are as accepted as ever. So I commenced to delve into them and find out how to purchase and mount one; I was in for a big surprise. You can come across many retail vendors over the internet that will sell you a solar panel but nowhere could I locate a detailed description of how to determine what to buy and how to install it; much less on board a yacht. So this piece was written as I made my way through the progression; therefore is a truly a learn-as-you-go article.
If you own a recreational vehicle, you know that it doesn’t matter whether you’re a full-time traveler and RV enthusiast, or if you’re a weekend RV camper, it’s hardly ever a cheap ordeal to run your recreational vehicle, or it’s various applications, for any substantial period of time at all. It’s for this very reason that there are more and more people out there who have gone ahead and made the decision to invest in a hardy set of RV solar panels to help crunch down those expensive energy expenditures, especially when they take into consideration how affordable the different types of RV solar panels have become in more recent years.