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Old 08-10-2014, 08:44 PM   #1
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ZAMP solar power plug

I just recently bought a 2014 Coachman Clipper 17BH and it has a little plug thing for a Zamp Solar plug. Does this mean all I would need to do is buy a panel and plug it in? If that's the case, what size panel do you need to get?
Also, just exactly what can be powered with the solar? The whole camper? I am new to all this solar stuff.
Thanks.
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Old 11-10-2014, 03:07 PM   #2
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I wish there were a few answers on this because I've been wondering the same thing!! I've looked online at the zamp solar panels and they look like they would just plug in, but I can't seem to get an answer on what it would actually charge or power in the 2014 Coachman Clipper 17BH. Have you looked into any further since you posted this?
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Old 11-10-2014, 03:24 PM   #3
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ZAMP solar power plug

I looked at the sites and looked around at a few other things, but it really didn't explain anything. I do know that they just plug in, but that's it.
Now from looking at some videos on YouTube for little houses (tiny homes, etc) it looks like they will power everything if you have enough panels, but how many is enough and how many you can plug in is a mystery. Also, I don't know what the camper is set up for as far as the converter (or whatever it's called for solar). That's another problem.
It would be nice if the people who made these campers would actually put a manual in them explaining everything in the camper, instead of all the separate manuals for the refrigerator, etc.
Also, you notice that no one else has bothered with a reply, so I guess we are the only two having this problem.
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Old 11-10-2014, 03:30 PM   #4
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Haha! Completely agree about the manuals. Give me something to work with!! I wondered about the converter too (or would it be an invertor?). Would the solar panels power the DC outlets too or just the AC accessories (lights, radio, etc) or does it just recharge the battery? Who knows!? I'm not about to spend the money on the panel without knowing completely what its capabilities are!? Maybe someone else will figure it out and let us know.

And....a little office topic (hope that's allowed?) - did you by chance mount a TV in your clipper?
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Old 11-10-2014, 03:52 PM   #5
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No. I just let the TV ride on the front bed. Couldn't really find a good place for it to mount, so I sit it on the counter top when I use it.
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Old 11-10-2014, 03:55 PM   #6
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That is exactly what we do too. I was hoping you had a magic answer for me! The sales guy we bought the camper from told us there were studs every 16" and that we could mount it above the window by the bed. Um....buddy....I'm pretty sure there is NO way there is a mountable stud above that window. We called Coachman and they said that the sales guy was completely misinformed. Lol. Ya think?
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Old 11-18-2014, 01:40 PM   #7
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Zamp Solar Solar Ready RV (SRRV) Ports

Hey Guys my name is Jeff from Zamp Solar - I'm here to help answer your questions on what Zamp Solar, Solar Ready RV means & other questions you might have regarding power and what you can expect. You can contact us at support@zampsolar.com or you can call us directly and chat with a sales person.

In short this is what you can assume -

If you have a Zamp Solar Sidewall/Roof port on the side of your RV it's ready for one of our Portable Solar Systems - 80 watts to 200 watts.

Roof/Sidewall Port
Zamp Solar Portable Solar System
Zamp Solar 3 Port Roof Cap

If the Roof/Sidewall Port is on the top of your RV then it's been pre-wired on the inside and all you need is a SRRV Kit (permanent system) - this is the panel(s) & panel wire, Mounting Feet and solar charge controller.

In detail -

Your sidewall port that is mounted on the side of your RV is already wired up to the battery. You can directly plug in a portable unit and face it at the sun to start solar charging. The portable solar system is complete and comes with everything needed to safely charge a battery. Each portable solar system comes with a PWM solar charge controller. The whole system is water resistant, no worries if it get caught out in the rain. (DO NOT PLUG IN A PANEL THAT IS UNREGULATED - this can toast your battery depending on the size of the panel)

If the single port is mounted on the roof then the system has been pre-wired for up to 200 watts of solar, we recommend going up to our 150 watt kit. If you have a 3 port roof cap then the system has been pre-wired for up to 450 watts of solar. The system will need one of our SRRV kits which include the solar panel and a solar charge controller for everything you need for connecting the panel to start solar charging the battery. There will be a spot on the inside of your RV where it says where to put the solar charge controller - the wires for the controller are behind the wall either in a large loop or cut and taped together.

I'll add more about what size to get in a bit.

-Jeff

Video of Portable Solar System Review -

Our YouTube Channel if you want more vids - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKW...1kkmhNATc_Av2Q
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Old 11-18-2014, 02:42 PM   #8
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What size portable do I need?

This is a fairly complex questions. However I will try to break it down the best I can. If you have a special situation you can always call us and we can ask you a bunch of questions to suggest what will work best for you.

Sizing the solar system based on batteries and RV size is a fairly easy way to get a rough estimate of what kind of power you'll be using. Combine that with you location information and we get a better picture of the external environmental factors.

What we want to accomplish is replacing the daily power usage with the solar system an at the same time sizing the battery to where you will only use 30 to 50% of it's capacity. Anytime you use more than 50% capacity of the battery it experiences increasing stress. Most RVers are really rough on their batteries and they only last 2-3 years, but with my recommendations and proper battery size and solar size you can expect 8 to 10 years and likely longer battery life.

Most of the time this chart will help determining what portable solar system will work for battery configurations. It's a rough estimate and configured for the U.S. If you live in an area frequently cloudy you'll need the better or best selection, sunnier area can go with the good or better -

RV's straight from the factory don't always have the best battery, it's worth considering an upgrade if you do a lot of dry camping.

Remember it's all about the amps. Our solar systems show you how many potential amp-hours you can expect to receive during an optimal sunny day. Depending on what electrical devices you use an amp-hour calculation can be done on your usage. Or you can find the amp-hour rating of your battery and go camping and calculate the average amp-hours used by how long it take for your batter to become low. This will require that you familiarize yourself with battery voltage and what a full battery and dead battery is. If this would be of interest I can write up a guide, just let me know.

All this information was based on a typical RV from the factory that is configured for running certain devices off the battery. If you use an inverter to power larger devices off the battery your consumption will be higher and special consideration should be taken when sizing your system.

-Jeff
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Old 11-18-2014, 02:45 PM   #9
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Zamp Solar Solar Ready RV (SRRV) Ports

Hey Guys my name is Jeff from Zamp Solar - I'm here to help answer your questions on what Zamp Solar, Solar Ready RV means & other questions you might have regarding power and what you can expect. You can contact us at support@zampsolar.com or you can call us directly and chat with a sales person.

In short this is what you can assume -

If you have a Zamp Solar Sidewall/Roof port on the side of your RV it's ready for one of our Portable Solar Systems - 80 watts to 200 watts.

Roof/Sidewall Port
Zamp Solar Portable Solar System
Zamp Solar 3 Port Roof Cap

If the Roof/Sidewall Port is on the top of your RV then it's been pre-wired on the inside and all you need is a SRRV Kit (permanent system) - this is the panel(s) & panel wire, Mounting Feet and solar charge controller.

In detail -

Your sidewall port that is mounted on the side of your RV is already wired up to the battery. You can directly plug in a portable unit and face it at the sun to start solar charging. The portable solar system is complete and comes with everything needed to safely charge a battery. Each portable solar system comes with a PWM solar charge controller. The whole system is water resistant, no worries if it get caught out in the rain. (DO NOT PLUG IN A PANEL THAT IS UNREGULATED - this can toast your battery depending on the size of the panel)

If the single port is mounted on the roof then the system has been pre-wired for up to 200 watts of solar, we recommend going up to our 150 watt kit. If you have a 3 port roof cap then the system has been pre-wired for up to 450 watts of solar. The system will need one of our SRRV kits which include the solar panel and a solar charge controller for everything you need for connecting the panel to start solar charging the battery. There will be a spot on the inside of your RV where it says where to put the solar charge controller - the wires for the controller are behind the wall either in a large loop or cut and taped together.

I'll add more about what size to get in a bit.

-Jeff

Video of Portable Solar System Review -

Our YouTube Channel if you want more vids - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKW...1kkmhNATc_Av2Q
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Old 11-19-2014, 10:14 AM   #10
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Wow! Thank you for such an in depth response ZAMP!! I've printed all of this out and my husband and I will read through it all. Thank you for your time!!!
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