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Old 09-02-2020, 03:43 PM   #1
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Question Rockwood 190W Solar + 1000W Inverter Option?

I just ordered a 2021 Rockwood 2509s Mini Lite travel trailer.

I optioned it with a 12v fridge--which comes bundled with a 190W solar panel, charge controller and 1000W inverter.

So, if anyone has a Rockwood factory solar package on their trailer, I have a few questions...

What actual hardware parts make up the system? I assumed it was a Go Power "Weekender" kit, but that doesn't seem to match the specs of the Rockwood inverter.

Does the Rockwood system include a transfer switch that automatically defeats the inverter if you plug into shore power?

Does this 190W package seem to keep up with the typical power draw of a 12v fridge?

What sort of battery setup are folks pairing with this package?

Is the charge controller 10 Amp or 30 Amp? And is it Bluetooth enabled for phone app control?

Can the inverter be switched on/off from inside the trailer--perhaps via the charge controller or a phone app?

Can the package hardware and wiring accommodate additional solar panels?

Are you happy with the package or do you experience issues or limitations that would make you look to beef it up?

Any insights are much appreciated!

Thanks!
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Old 09-02-2020, 07:57 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnmurr View Post
I just ordered a 2021 Rockwood 2509s Mini Lite travel trailer.



I optioned it with a 12v fridge--which comes bundled with a 190W solar panel, charge controller and 1000W inverter.



So, if anyone has a Rockwood factory solar package on their trailer, I have a few questions...



What actual hardware parts make up the system? I assumed it was a Go Power "Weekender" kit, but that doesn't seem to match the specs of the Rockwood inverter.



Does the Rockwood system include a transfer switch that automatically defeats the inverter if you plug into shore power?



Does this 190W package seem to keep up with the typical power draw of a 12v fridge?



What sort of battery setup are folks pairing with this package?



Is the charge controller 10 Amp or 30 Amp? And is it Bluetooth enabled for phone app control?



Can the inverter be switched on/off from inside the trailer--perhaps via the charge controller or a phone app?



Can the package hardware and wiring accommodate additional solar panels?



Are you happy with the package or do you experience issues or limitations that would make you look to beef it up?



Any insights are much appreciated!



Thanks!


I don’t have a rock wood but my creek came standard with this 1000 watt inverter and 190 watt panel. It is a go power system, up to 30 amps is my understanding. But only currently getting the 190 watts which is essentially a trickle charge for your battery so it doesn’t die. The inverter is great for travel and being able to keep fridge on. I always leave the inverter on. Shore power just takes over. Mine nots Bluetooth I don’t believe. I have two batteries, those doing serious boondocking can pair 4 batteries I believe. Mine can not be turned off and on from inside I don’t believe. It can accommodate more panels. And we have young kids so we always have shore power. We store it in our pole barn which we keep plugged in. If I was going to boondock and rely on batteries recharging daily without generator, I’d get a 4 battery setup and more panels. But idk if we’ll ever be those campers, lots of cool places for those that do. Hope this somewhat helps.
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Old 09-03-2020, 04:55 PM   #3
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Thanks HappilyLost!

Can you clarify something...

You said you leave the inverter on all the time and it just switches to shore power when you plug in.

So, it sounds like there is a transfer switch between the inverter and 30amp input—which is great!

My question is: do you notice any difference in what trailer systems are available via the inverter? I understand that 1000 Watts isn’t gonna get your AC going, but does the inverter power all 110v receptacles/devices regardless? Or does the inverter only power certain “safe” devices and receptacles?
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Old 09-03-2020, 10:18 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by johnmurr View Post
Thanks HappilyLost!

Can you clarify something...

You said you leave the inverter on all the time and it just switches to shore power when you plug in.

So, it sounds like there is a transfer switch between the inverter and 30amp input—which is great!

My question is: do you notice any difference in what trailer systems are available via the inverter? I understand that 1000 Watts isn’t gonna get your AC going, but does the inverter power all 110v receptacles/devices regardless? Or does the inverter only power certain “safe” devices and receptacles?


My outlets do work in my creek. However, they didn’t work in my salem. It depends how a unit is wired and what’s tied in I’d imagine.
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Old 09-08-2020, 10:09 AM   #5
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I just took delivery of a Micro Lite 25BRDS with 12V fridge and 190W Solar setup you mentioned. We're taking it out for the first time this weekend...however a majority of the outlets inside the trailer have stickers on them that say "Inverter Powered".

I also have a button inside that will turn the inverter on and off. I also believe that when plugged into shore power, it automatically switches over. The GoPower! screen seems to indicate that it's no longer using battery/solar. There does not seem to be any Bluetooth capability, either.
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Old 09-08-2020, 07:52 PM   #6
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Travel with the Inverter On?

I am curious as to why you would need to leave your Inverter on while traveling if your Refrigerator is 12 VDC? The inverter converts 12 VDC to 120 VAC, or did I miss something? JH

Quote:
Originally Posted by HappilyLost View Post
I don’t have a rock wood but my creek came standard with this 1000 watt inverter and 190 watt panel. It is a go power system, up to 30 amps is my understanding. But only currently getting the 190 watts which is essentially a trickle charge for your battery so it doesn’t die. The inverter is great for travel and being able to keep fridge on. I always leave the inverter on. Shore power just takes over. Mine nots Bluetooth I don’t believe. I have two batteries, those doing serious boondocking can pair 4 batteries I believe. Mine can not be turned off and on from inside I don’t believe. It can accommodate more panels. And we have young kids so we always have shore power. We store it in our pole barn which we keep plugged in. If I was going to boondock and rely on batteries recharging daily without generator, I’d get a 4 battery setup and more panels. But idk if we’ll ever be those campers, lots of cool places for those that do. Hope this somewhat helps.
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Old 09-09-2020, 11:49 PM   #7
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If the Rockwoods come with a "GoPower 190Watt Weekender", and you have a TT with 50amp service, then it seems it should have a TransferSwitch matched to handle 2x50amps. Right? This Link has a matrix listing specs of TransferSwitch(s).
https://gpelectric.com/products/week...system/#panel0
Has anybody received a "Elite" instead of "Weekender" in their Rockwood?
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Old 09-22-2020, 10:09 PM   #8
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I have the same setup in our trailer. From the directions the on off switch for the inverter does not function unless the inverter is manually switched to off on the unit itself.

Does anyone know where these units are mounted in the rig? I'd like to get the specific model just to know what features are available.

Also I am concerned as well with my solar and two batteries keeping up with boondocking, going to buy a generator, but a bit dissapointed I cant switch to propane to have days and days of cold food.

I'll have some real world data on this in a few weeks after the maiden trip with no hookups
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Old 10-06-2020, 02:49 PM   #9
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Directly from Rockwood:

The fridge draws around 5-5.5 amps/hr when initially cooling – it only takes about 2 hours to cool – can easily cool it before your trip. Once cooled, it draws around .9-1.5 amps/hr.



The 190W solar should provide plenty of power – around 8 amps/hr – in most situations. In certain situations (longer off-grid trips with some shade) it would be beneficial to add another panel – either to the cable entry plate on top (https://gpelectric.com/products/cable-entry-plate/) or to the side solar port – which requires a portable solar panel.
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Old 10-07-2020, 06:03 PM   #10
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Do you happen to know where on the roof they mount the panel?
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Old 10-07-2020, 06:07 PM   #11
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I was just inquiring about the G19 FBS and based on pix I saw, it is not a hard panel (not a flexible one) and mounted on right side about two/thirds from front.
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Old 11-23-2020, 11:42 AM   #12
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Just purchased new 2021 Rockwood Ultra Lite 5th wheel 2883ws that came from factory with 190 solar roof mount and 1000 watt inverter for the residential refrigerator.
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Old 12-03-2020, 08:26 AM   #13
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Just received my 2608 yesterday, I'll answer based upon what I see in my rig with the same package. I doubt they deviate too much in the Rockwood line.

Solar & Inverter are 2 separate systems.

The 12v inverter, WFCO Model WF-5110RS is mounted in an inside cabinet front of the rig (very close to battery) with a remote on/off switch. I have 6 labeled outlets powered from the inverter fed from the circuit named GFCI with a 15Amp circuit breaker in the power panel. When the inverter is off, AC power passes normally through it. The manual says that if left on, the inverter will auto transfer between AC to battery if AC is interrupted (will be testing this weekend). If boondocking, don't leave it on - it uses power just sitting there.

The solar panel is mounted near the rear of my rig and the GoPower GP-PWM-30-UL is mounted on the bedroom wall. This unit has a selectable battery type option (flooded, sealed, AGM, LiFePO4) with different charging voltage & cycles based upon these. It does have bluetooth, but more for watching the system and resetting counters than actual control. Once set, there isn't much control necessary.

The controller can feed 2 battery banks (the manual says '2 batteries') labeled Battery A and Battery B. This is more for an RV which may have 'house' and 'coach' battery banks and NOT for a system with 2 batteries of the SAME type serving the same purpose. This controller is hard programmed to first charge the A side and then the B side. I have to see if FR ran wires for both "A" and "B" - there is a massive rats nest of a wiring system up front. Regardless, since I have 2 flooded 12v batteries from my old trailer, I'm only making sure that "A" is hooked up and "B" is secured, labeled and tucked away.

(one note on the side 'solar ready' plug that is appearing on many trailers today: this is not part of the controller - it's direct wired to 12v + and -. More of a poor man's solar connection)

Can you add additional solar? Yes, I suspect that this can be done either via breaking the roof connection and adding another panel (daisy chain) or connecting to the input of the controller. Both require you staying within the electrical specs of the controller (mine = 35Volts, 37.5Amps input). Personally, as I get more into boondocking, I think I would add an exterior input to the controller for a suitcase panel rather than adding another to the roof.

What kind of battery? Today it's what I had - 2 flooded 12v batteries. Probably being replaced with 1 LiFePO4 and putting it inside (right next to Inverter). Depends upon volume of boondocking the wife is ready for (hairdryer + inverter + batteries is a silly equation).

The fridge delivered with my unit is the Magic Chef WD-282FWDC. The plate says: Rated current 11A, LED Lamp power 1W, Defrost Power 120W. I'll be measuring the heck out of this to see what it really uses over a 24 hour period when actually camping. Power consumption will certainly change based upon ambient temp and how much beer and ice cream is in there.

HTH,

/Jeff
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Old 12-04-2020, 07:01 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnmurr View Post
I just ordered a 2021 Rockwood 2509s Mini Lite travel trailer.

I optioned it with a 12v fridge--which comes bundled with a 190W solar panel, charge controller and 1000W inverter.

I ordered a 2511S a few weeks ago with the same package and have the questions you have, so I will follow this post!
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Old 12-08-2020, 11:40 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by RavensRoost View Post
I ordered a 2511S a few weeks ago with the same package and have the questions you have, so I will follow this post!
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Old 01-02-2021, 05:03 PM   #16
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Solar

I have a Geo Pro wi solar panel and 12 v. frig. The frig works well with the Solar. however turning on the lights or anythings else will be too much of a draw on the batteries. Be sure to bring a generator because the batteries and solar won't cut it!
]



Quote:
Originally Posted by johnmurr View Post
I just ordered a 2021 Rockwood 2509s Mini Lite travel trailer.

I optioned it with a 12v fridge--which comes bundled with a 190W solar panel, charge controller and 1000W inverter.

So, if anyone has a Rockwood factory solar package on their trailer, I have a few questions...

What actual hardware parts make up the system? I assumed it was a Go Power "Weekender" kit, but that doesn't seem to match the specs of the Rockwood inverter.

Does the Rockwood system include a transfer switch that automatically defeats the inverter if you plug into shore power?

Does this 190W package seem to keep up with the typical power draw of a 12v fridge?

What sort of battery setup are folks pairing with this package?

Is the charge controller 10 Amp or 30 Amp? And is it Bluetooth enabled for phone app control?

Can the inverter be switched on/off from inside the trailer--perhaps via the charge controller or a phone app?

Can the package hardware and wiring accommodate additional solar panels?

Are you happy with the package or do you experience issues or limitations that would make you look to beef it up?

Any insights are much appreciated!

Thanks!
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Old 01-04-2021, 11:55 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by amoeba3 View Post
I have a Geo Pro wi solar panel and 12 v. frig. The frig works well with the Solar. however turning on the lights or anythings else will be too much of a draw on the batteries. Be sure to bring a generator because the batteries and solar won't cut it!
]
You are correct. I was once told that you cannot manage what you cannot measure. A camper depending upon solar as their sole source of power needs an intimate knowledge of their power consumption - the one thing that is not installed on our rigs is a meter to do so.

The 190watt solar panel is rated as it's ideal, ie when it is in it's best position with the best sun. Rare, if ever, will you get 190watts out of it. It's for topping up your battery system. More panels = more 'topping up'. I have seen a few people with panel arrays on their rig which can actually run the entire rig. When it's sunny...

A lead-acid or 'flooded' deep cycle battery with 540 CCA similar to one may buy from any auto parts store, or get installed by their RV dealer, has approx 189 Amp/hrs (CCA to Amp/hrs formula is CCA * .7 and then take that number and * .5 as flooded batteries should only be used to 50%). If you have something that is consuming 1 amp this example battery can power it for 189 hours - assuming battery was full, stable temp, perfect chemicals, etc. (this isn't going to turn into a battery rant, but flooded lead-acid batteries are the LEAST efficient batteries for pure solar, IMHO).

My magic chef fridge is rated at 11 Amps. The light consumes 1 watt and the defroster consumes 120 watts. The compressor motor and the circuit board consumes the rest. Take a warm fridge, fill it with warm beer and that thing is running at 100% for probably a few hours to get it to temp. Hot day and kids opening and closing? ditto 189/11amp = 17 hours of run time if the compressor, the big power hog, is running at 100%.

It's not a stretch to see that a weekend using a single lead acid battery, with limited solar re-charge, won't power your fridge for that period. Now start adding lights, fans, radio, water pump, circuit board for water heater and any other parasitic power loss and you are probably down to 24 hours. Don't forget the power necessary to bring your slides back in or jacks up!

The 12v fridge + 190watt solar is not a boondocking package. It's an entry level solution to manage short-term interruptions of shore power where we used to rely on the 'auto' switch on the elect/gas evaporative refrigerators to change from 120v to gas when there was no power.

It is also an easy way to start to understand solar, batteries, and power consumption to make educated decisions on boondocking using solar. It's both an art and science.

/Jeff
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Old 01-04-2021, 12:39 PM   #18
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I dry camped for 5 days last week with Geo Pro 19FD. As previously stated the solar struggled to keep up. I used my 3500 generator to supplement for only 3 hours in the 5 days. I purchased battery powered puck lights to eliminate the overhead lights from drawing power on the battery. Although I have two batteries it struggles. I think lithium batteries may be enough to be get my through. The frig and trailer is great. Keep the frig on high when you load up and travel. You can turn it way down (3) and the freezer food remain frozen! Keep the solar in unobstructed areas and pointed to the south. The Geo Pro has wonderful features but the oven and oven door is fragile.
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Old 01-04-2021, 01:49 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by amoeba3 View Post
I dry camped for 5 days last week with Geo Pro 19FD. As previously stated the solar struggled to keep up. I used my 3500 generator to supplement for only 3 hours in the 5 days. I purchased battery powered puck lights to eliminate the overhead lights from drawing power on the battery. Although I have two batteries it struggles. I think lithium batteries may be enough to be get my through. The frig and trailer is great. Keep the frig on high when you load up and travel. You can turn it way down (3) and the freezer food remain frozen! Keep the solar in unobstructed areas and pointed to the south. The Geo Pro has wonderful features but the oven and oven door is fragile.
I have two Lithium batteries in my TT (a Rockwood cousin) and even run a small freezer in my outside kitchen from my Inverter. I keep them charged with a 160 watt portable solar setup. On full sun days I don't have to run the generator at all. If skies are overcast several days in a row I need to start and run the generator after a couple days. Best thing about the Lithium batteries is that they charge quickly even when 80-90% discharged. Takes about 3 hours to fully charge from the deep discharge.

BTW, if you have solar, don't worry about having to change the converter. Regular converters will charge to ~90% when on generator or shore power and the solar controller, when set to Lithiim, will take care of the rest of the charge. It will bring voltage high enough for cell balancing.
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Old 01-12-2021, 12:13 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by NorCal Mike View Post
Directly from Rockwood:

The fridge draws around 5-5.5 amps/hr when initially cooling – it only takes about 2 hours to cool – can easily cool it before your trip. Once cooled, it draws around .9-1.5 amps/hr.



The 190W solar should provide plenty of power – around 8 amps/hr – in most situations. In certain situations (longer off-grid trips with some shade) it would be beneficial to add another panel – either to the cable entry plate on top (https://gpelectric.com/products/cable-entry-plate/) or to the side solar port – which requires a portable solar panel.
Jumping in here...as far as adding an additional portable panel on the side solar port as you suggested...would the 90 amp model be adequate for this?
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