Budget freed up some $$$ and a buddy had some spare 280W solar panels which he gave me. I have spent untold hours researching all the various solar generators, Bluetti, Goal Zero, EcoFlow, Jackery and a number of others. I am at the point of brain lock given all the data I have collected and analyzed, thanks to the engineer in me. I currently have a Goal Zero Yeti 400W unit and the briefcase solar panels which landed in my lap.
I am looking to get something in the 1-2kW range. At some pointI will beadding a second battery amd a dc-dc switch with the help of a buddy from Zero Motorcycles.
Should I just put the names up on a board and find a monkey to throw a dart at it?
I’ve had a bunch of GZ units. The most recent a 3000x. I decided this time to get the Dometic PLB40. Has great reviews, weighs a lot less, and has better battery technology. It just showed up, so I don’t have any experience yet. However, I consulted with many people before buying, and it’s seems to be a solid choice.
I have the ac200max and also an eco flow. Both are great units storing a decent amount of power.
I’ve got an Ecoflow Delta Max 2000 and am quite happy with it so far, although I haven’t used it much yet. Upgraded from a Jackery 1000 (which was also good, but the inverter was too small) so that I could run my induction cook top while out camping. Really love not having to tote around propane anymore. I charge it with a pair of the Ecoflow 160W panels when in camp and plug it into the truck bed inverter when driving anywhere.
Just did some quick googling on portable induction cooktops and it sounds like they draw quite a bit of power?
Typically 1500-1800 watts for a single “burner”. Flip side is wind doesn’t affect them and they don’t have combustion, so enclosed spaces aren’t a problem. I’m a fan of them.
Seems cool but that’s a hefty power draw!
My 100AH battery would be dead in an hour.
Using it for a meal on my Ecoflow takes about 15%
Something that I didn’t mention (slipped my mind) is that the induction top doesn’t run full power all the time. The 1500 watts is max rated power (on my unit), and running mine at 10 (highest setting) usually only shows to draw 1200 watts off my Ecoflow. You don’t cook at full power either, I’m usually cooking between 4 and 6, The 1-10 settings correlate to approximate percentage power draw of the full power rating, So 5 (a typical medium heat setting) is only going to draw about 600 watts. Something to factor into calculations. It’ll still chew up your battery, but not nearly at the rate you calculated earlier.
I have the Goal Zero 1500. It runs my coffee maker on a timer(this will drain a 1500 pretty quickly), my electric blanket and my fridge. I have my solar panels in the truck and set them out when camping. I will mount them when I get a few issues worked out with the roof.
I live in so cal, i have 2x 100w renogy flexible panels taped to my roof, and cables run thru a Rv gland on the roof to a goal zero 1000x in the bed that runs my iceco 42l fridge. To keep things 34*F constant, if the fridge is somewhat full, and outer temps are no higher than the 70s, my fridge can run indefinitely off the sun it gets parked in front of my place, so about 6-7 hours of direct sunlight. If the temps are in the 90s or higher, the Goal zero struggles to keep up with the demand, since the ambient temp is affecting the temp of the fridge at that point, and with the goal zero and fridge running in the back with no ventilation, I’ve opened it up to check and it was definitely hot inside, so there’s that. If the temp around the fridge is hot, the fridge has to work double time to keep things cool. I got the goal zero 1000x because i thought it was the perfect size compromise and still have the built in mppt controller
I am looking at the eco flows, just curious which model you are running?
I run the river pro. I also run the bluetti ac200max.
My wife and I have been living in our Promaster van full time for 3 months now. We purchased the Goal Zero Yeti 1000 after many months of research, watching videos and reviews https://houseandbeyond.org/best-solar-generator/, and we are very happy with our decision to purchase this unit. It fit our needs perfectly. We run a maxxair fan,on highest setting, a roadpro 12v box fan on high along with our homemade a/c cooler at night, all night, and we still have 50- 60% the following morning allowing us to fully recharge with just 1-100 watt panel by the next evening to do it all over again.
I myself have found the goal zero 1000x the perfect all in one for my rig too. Simple to remove as well if I have to. I only run my iceco fridge on setting 4 and I have over 75% the next morning, with 2 x 100 w panels I’m at 100% by noon.
Don’t buy anything that isn’t LiFePO4 battery technology or you are doing yourself a disservice.
100% agree. LiFePO4 is always the way to go.
I went in circles with this and finally landed on something unexpected. The Powerbox 135 from Dakota Lithium. This thing has 135Ah of LiPFeO4 with 1000 CCA, can accept 135-150A input, functions from -20 to 176 degrees… and it was $1600 delivered. It seems far more durable, robust and functional than other units for similar prices - but it’s definitely marketed to bass fisherman, so it lacks in the looks dept. Still, it floats, it’s waterproof…
AND it can handle large draws.
I am going to connect a DC-DC dual-input charge controller, my 100w solar panel, and forget about power needs.
I bought the Dometic PLB40. While it’s small, the battery is way more efficient. I have the vehicle charge kit, and a 100W portable solar panel. I’m coming from GZ, and like this better. Just depends on your needs. I like small and efficient anymore.
I picked up an EcoFlow Delta Max 2000 on a Black Friday deal for $1,050. It’s running the Dometic CFX3 55IM which I also picked up on Black Friday deal for $859 (plus got the insulated cover for for $80). So far the lowest the EcoFlow has dropped in the last week is 90% and that’s a full 24 hours of not running the vehicle. I just charge via the 12v input for now until I can get power to the bed of the truck and some solar. GoFast install is in two hours! Stoked for what’s next.