Camping with Foldable Solar Panels: Make the Most of Your Adventure
Foldable solar panels are small solar panels that are easily transported anywhere and are easy to install. Just like a regular solar panel, foldable ones can turn sunlight into electricity or heat. They are available in various sizes, but even the largest portable solar panel can be stored inside an RV or a car.
Usually, these foldable solar panels can provide up to 320W of power (depending on their size). They come with a kit that has additional tools like a cable, stand, solar charge controller, inverter and a battery. The photovoltaic cells have various layers of silicon. Once the sun rays hit the panel, photons are released that create an electric field between these layers of silicon in each cell. The metallic strips attached to the panel channelize this electric field and send it to the battery or grid based on the system. The charger controller is connected to regulate the power output. A battery and inverter may be connected to store the generated power.
Reasons to Get Foldable Camping Solar Panels
If you’re a camper or enjoy going on an adventure with your RV, you know that having power is crucial. Sure, you have batteries, but a battery won’t help you if you want to charge your laptop for instance. Solar panels for camping can allow you to use the sun to your advantage. You can use the generated power to charge your phone, various appliances such as a portable fridge, or your vehicle’s battery. Another reason to get camping solar panels is that it gives you the option to heat water and set up the perfect camping shower.
But why are foldable panels the best option for campers? The following are some reasons why you shouldn’t think twice and invest in foldable camping solar panels.
No Need to Drill Holes in the Roof
Foldable solar panels don’t require complex installation, even if you are new to this. You don’t need to have any experience to install them, since they don’t require drilling holes on the roof of your vehicle.
Before buying, you need to measure the size of the vehicle and decide how many panels can fit on the roof (the spot where it’s most convenient to install them). Make sure you get the correct size of solar charge controller for your system too. Solar panels have different sizes and it’s better to use the same manufacturer, watt and amp size for all.
Check if the charge controller models can be connected to the deep cycle batteries (if they can, this can be done in ten minutes). Go for models with USB outlets so you can charge electronics directly. Although there’s no drilling, you should still spend some time learning how to properly place the panel on the vehicle (be sure to read the guidelines or ask someone who has already installed such panels to help you).
They Take Less Space
The last thing you need is no space in your RV or car when packing for a camping adventure. The excellent thing is that when not in use, a foldable solar panel can be stored anywhere, without taking much space. You can place it under the bed, inside the cabinets or even over the bags in the trunk. The fact that you don’t have to mount it on the roof of your vehicle, will give you extra space there for other heavy and large gear such as surfboards or kayaks, or a rooftop tent, speaking of which.
You’re Free to Get a Rooftop Tent
If you have a small RV that hardly has any space for the needed appliances or want to try camping with a 4×4, then you’re probably looking into ways you can increase the available space. One of the best ways to get more room and make the most of your outdoor adventure is with a rooftop tent. There’s a range of rooftop tents in a variety of sizes to fit any recreational vehicle or 4×4. Imagine getting twice the space without having to make any expensive upgrades – this is what a rooftop tent can provide.
A rooftop tent is also aa smart idea for adding extra sleeping space if you travel with your extended family or friends. This way you can all get the much-needed comfort without making a crowd down in the RV.
If you decide to get a roof top tent or want to have the option to get one in the future, foldable solar panels are your best choice for off-the-grid power. The great thing is that you can easily set the tent on the rooftop because the solar panels can be placed on the ground as well. And if you want to charge your laptop, phone or camera in the tent, you can even place the panels on the tent itself as they are lightweight.
Get Power While Parked in the Shade
No camper in their right mind would want to park their RV in the sun. However, if you have panels permanently installed on the roof of the RV, it means that you won’t get any power when parked in the shade. This is why portable folding panels are such a smart investment. You can place them anywhere in the sun, away from the RV, and get to enjoy the generated power.
Getting power while your vehicle is parked in the shade is the ultimate win – you get a cool place to rest and the panels can be placed in the sun and will work their magic so you can have your much-needed power.
When it comes to making the most of their outdoor stay, campers could really use items that are practical and don’t need a lot of maintenance. Having rooftop solar panels doesn’t require any special dedication – you just might need to remove fallen leaves or snow from time to time, but other than that, the portable solar panels don’t need any extra maintenance.