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Old 10-25-2020, 06:41 PM   #1
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Join Date: Oct 2020
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Default 90s 17T

Hi All!

Iím in the market for a small camper, Hi-Loís have my attention for a lot of reasons. Here are my concerns:
Iím a boondocker, big time. This Hi-Lo has all propane appliances (fridge,stove, heater) which is great. The lift is my big issue: an uncharged battery will drain pretty quick and I donít want to be stuck in a forest with a camper that I canít get into.
This unit needs a 12V connection for the lift, standard Iím sure. I really donít want a generator. Can the battery somehow connect to my car to keep it charged?
Would a small solar setup be sufficient? (I saw JackandJanets 200W set up and could 100% implement that).
Am I better saving myself the heartache and just going with a canned ham? I would never boondock for more than a week so Iím hopeful!
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Old 10-25-2020, 08:38 PM   #2
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Jasyaad - It's actually a 300W system now, which you will see if you read to the end of the thread. It works quite well, unless I'm camped in full shade, which I was at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. Then, I needed the generator. A small generator will work, mine's 1000W and it is quiet and uses very little fuel. A gallon of gas will last at least 4 days if I have to run it each day (possibly more).

You could certainly run jumper cables from your tow vehicle to the trailer battery to charge it if you want, but that's a very inefficient way to do it.

One more thing - you need a fairly good battery (at least 1/2 charge) to RAISE the top, but very little battery power is needed to lower the top. You just need enough to open the lowering valve (which can also be opened manually). AND, if your trailer has the optional manual lift add-on, it can be raised manually too!

You can reduce the electrical load on your trailer's battery by replacing all interior lighting with LEDs (which I've done). Now, if I turn ALL of them on, it uses about the same amount of current as only one of the EOM incandescent lights. There is still a small battery draw, of course if you use the ventilation fan, the water pump, and there is a small electrical draw from the refrigerator even if running on propane (powers a fan and the electronics).

I would not discount a HiLo based on electrical needs, but I DO admit it is a bit more complicated than a canned ham. However, we ALWAYS boondock unless it's just an overnighter on the way and I've never regretted having the HiLo behind me.
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