1 Year – Full Time Solar Production & Consumption

Well, It’s been a year since I blew up the Solar Controller and needed to resolder a 48 pin QFN part in the middle of the desert with the last of our battery power in hopes of getting our charge controller online again. And that means that means that it’s been one year since the watt hour counters have been reset in this bad boy.

So what does it all mean? The first two lines, PV1 is the top set of 4 solar panels which are always in the sun and PV2 is the bottom set of solar panels, which can be deployed and retracted as needed for additional power if we are in poor conditions or need massive power to run our Air Conditioner to keep the dog cool while we hike where he’s not allowed or long shopping excursions, Costco-amiright?

But for the purposes of this discussion we’ll combine these two values, 729,880.9Wh and 406,310.6Wh for a total of 1,136,191.5Wh or simplified to 1136.2kWh We’ll put a pin in that for now…

But Jason, What does it all mean? Holdup, One more number that’s relevant here, the battery line at 676,218.6Wh or 676.2kWh – This is the amount of power that went out (and thus into) the battery and the difference between this and the total solar collected is how much power was used while it was being made. Simply put, how much power was used _as it was being made_ as opposed to stored in the batteries and then used. And that number is 460kWh – and that makes sense because we use the most power during the day, cooking, running the AC, computers, etc.

It’s hard for me to make this relatable because the only reference for household power consumption is the house we used to own in Saskatchewan, In the fall we’d use about 500kWh per month, Summer, when the AC was running more often, we’d use about 1100kWh a month. I just checked our old power bills and from July 2017 to July 2018 the power meter at our home indicated 18,303 kWh. A very interesting point of reference for me actually. We’d have used almost 20 times the power had we been sitting in a house in Saskatchewan. And 100% of the power we used was renewable, green, Solar power, we don’t charge off of our engine when we drive and we don’t have provisions to charge from the grid, so it’s all powered by the sun.

While this post seems fairly disorganized to me as I write it, It all boils down to this, We made and used 1,136.2kWh in a year. And that is something I couldn’t really find online when I was looking. Knowing how much your Laptop uses is fine, but it’s all the other things that you don’t think of that can come to get you. And we have lots of little things, So for full-time like on the road in a fairly well equipped RV with all the amenities we need including:

  • Isotherm Fridge, always on
  • Engel Deep Freeze, always on
  • MaxxAir ceiling fan, always on, at least on low.
  • 800w Mini Split AC unit, summer months, 2-3 hours a day.
  • 150w Laptop for 2-3 hours a day
  • Second Monitor, for 2-3 hours a day
  • Cooking, Induction Cooktop, Kettle for Daily Coffee, Sous Vide, Instant Pot
  • Heating shower water via Anova Sous Vide
  • A crazy amount of LED Light inside our Cabin, 90 watts – maybe 2-3 hours a day
  • 3 Air Compressors, which run our solar slides, water pressure, and tires of course.
  • CPAP Breathing machine 7-8 hours a night
  • Phones, Bluetooth Speakers, Video Cameras, Gimbals, Drones

Hopefully this was useful to you guys, if you like the content we’re making then head on over to our YouTube channel and check out some of our other stuff, an please consider becoming a Channel Member.

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