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Free 100-Watt Solar System Plans (For Campervans)


Diagram of a 100 Watt Solar Power System
Click here to download the diagram in higher resolution.

A 100 Watt Solar Power System is large enough people who only need to power basic electronics like laptops, cellphones, cameras, and LED lights. In this article you’ll learn how to build a small solar system for your Camper or RV.

You could build a system like this for less than $450, and on clear sunny days, you’ll produce around 42 Amps of green energy. That much energy can easily power personal devices for two people all day and overnight.

Project Components

Solar Array

Batteries

Everything Else

Installation

The battery must be installed in a safe place with good air circulation. Pick a location that also offers protection from shifting loads to prevent battery damage.

Mount your solar charge controllerfuse panel, and the DC Circuit Breaker in a convenient-to-reach location.

It’s practical to mount them to a plywood board like in the picture. Doing it this way allows you to install all of these individual components as one single unit, saving you time and headache…trust me.

Solar Charge Controller and Fuse

Before installing your solar charge controller, check the manufacturer’s instructions on wire sizing and fusing. At the time of this writing, the solar charge controller recommended in this article can be installed safely with a 15A fuse.

For fuse placement, you have two options.

Option 1
Install an inline fuse and connect the solar charge controller to the main positive and negative terminals on the fuse panel.

Option 2
Use one of the built-in fuses on the fuse panel to accomplish the same thing. This is the preferred method, it saves you from buying a separate inline fuse. Remember that option 2 only works for small solar systems as the maximum fuse size per slot is 30A.

Different options for fuse installation of an MPPT solar charge controller

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Connect the Battery

Next, you’ll connect your battery/batteries. In general, you need to always make sure the battery is connected before the solar panels. The reason being is that solar panels generate electrical current, and there needs to be a place for that current to go and be stored.

When wiring up your battery, the fuse needs to be placed on the positive cable, as close to the battery as possible. You can install a 60 Amp Fuse in this system.

If you are installing a Shunt/Battery Monitor, now is the time to install it on the negative cable. You might also want to install a battery switch too, this helps you disconnect the battery quickly and safely if you ever need to. You can find more information about battery monitors here.

Connect the Solar Panel

At this point everything should be in it’s place and all connections tight, now you can connect your solar panels and start creating energy.

Any components you wish to use should be wired through the fuse panel with the appropriate sized fuse. Below you’ll find a list of components that should help make your build much smoother.

Looking for an easier option?

A Solar Generator might be exactly what you need. These All-In-One devices require no tools or assembly. Here are a few options that cover small, medium, and large energy requirements.

Jackery Explorer 160 Small budget-friendly Power devices like phones and laptops. Learn more…
Anker 535 Medium-sized option. Power devices, fans, electric coolers, drones, and more. Learn more…
Anker 757 Large-sized option Power almost anything you would at home. Learn more…

Browse our other 12-Volt Systems

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