When it comes to Fulltiming there are a number of issues that hold major concerns that you just don’t have to worry about in a house.
In this post I will cover electric.My current setup Has a Victron 12/120/3000 multiplus installed along with 4 x 220AH batteries. I also have the remote panel and the battery charge monitor.
The numbers above mean it is a 12V system, with an integrated 120Amp charger and 3KW inverter.
The victron Multiplus is not just an integrated charger/inverter it is a full power management system. The EHU socket on the outside of the Van connects directly to the input of the Victron, The output of the Victron then goes to the original Distribution panel. That is the entirity of the changes I had to make to the vans wiring.
Now the remote control panel has a switch and a knob. The switch allows me to switch the system from Inverter/charger to OFF to Charger only. The knob allows me to set the input current limiter. For example when I am on campsites with small trips I limit the input current to 4Amps. This means I never blow the trips on sites.
The current limiter is where the Victron gets clever. Say I am on a campsite and am limited to 4Ams which is for arguments sake 1Kw. If I use less than 1Kw then the victron puts the excess power into the batteries.
However if I use say 2KW, the Victron keeps pulling 1KW from the camp supply and pulls 1KW from the batteries and passes it through. In practice this means I am always charging the batteries at the maximum possible rate whilst at the same time never blowing site trips or finding equipment not working due to lack of power. Once set the Victron is a run and forget piece of kit.
I also have a charge monitor that is incredibly accurate. It has a large Brass shunt which all 12V gear has to go through including the Victron, Solar Panels and charge from the Alternator. Inside the Van I have a meter that shows me;
- current Charge level as a %
- Incoming/outgoing amps either + or – and the value. + means net charge is going into the battery.
- Number of hours remaining at current usage levels.
- The number of AH in the battery
- The Voltage of the battery.
This is an expensive bit of kit but the payback for me is that I never worry about electric in the van.
In the future I will be adding solar panels to the roof and possibly and underslung generator but these will probably be when I do my self build.