Let’s just do a little updating of our trip to get here, yesterday we were at 7300 feet at 11 o’clock and when we settled into Craggy just before 2 o’clock, we are now at 750 feet, after todays drive the trip computer is showing 9.2 mpg, Thunder is good on fuel but not that good. To put it into perspective we dropped over one mile in height today, could explain the computer reading… you think.
Since we crossed the border on October 31st and started our western push we have travelled 2616 miles (4200 kms) in 14 days, that’s just under 200 miles (320 kms) a day, the biggest day was 341 miles (548 kms) that was our day when we left Amarillo TX and stopped just west of Albuquerque NM. We have been pushed by weather and had one small repair after picking up some bad fuel in Arkansas, we had one day of heavy rain, again Arkansas, I’m starting to see a trend here… I am sure it is just a coincidence but we may bypass Arkansas on the way home in April…just saying
What a beautiful morning here at Craggy, it’s in the 50’s with clear skies, our battery bank is not happy this morning, I’m not just sure why, so I will be checking connections (we have been over a few patches of really bad roads) this morning as they were at 100% yesterday. Today will be a solar only day, as we are hopping not to need any generator as supplement as we start into a week of true desert boondocking, keep in mind that the four batteries that we are using are the same batteries that I felt were near failing two years ago, that we have nursed along, and we are hoping to replace this winter with lithium.
It is sunshine like Arizona that the full potential of your solar system gets a chance to show itself our 700 watts of panels on the roof of Thunder are bringing in 26 amps, then the solar controllers are able to boost that to 30 amps and that is at 10:30 and the sun is not yet directly on the panels, I also have our 200 watt suitcase in direct sunshine bringing in almost 11 amps of power
That’s over 40 amps of power flowing into the system, what we have to keep in mind is that all this time we are using power for a number of tasks. The inverter is giving our 110 volts that is running our creature comforts, satellite, television, recharging lap top, running the basement bar fridge (a guy needs cold beer), recharging our portable vacuum, and other small draws.
The picture above shows the amount of power being pushed into the batteries, so although it varies from minute to minute of the 40+ amps being produced almost 30 are being pushed into the battery bank for use latter, the battery bank is the key to any solar system and this is why it is our next upgrade, so far the 900 watts is more than enough to carry the load during the day and recharge our batteries, I may have to add more panels when the battery capacity increases.