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Old 22-07-2018, 06:56   #1
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Real Time AH Use

What are some recent usages while sailing with all instruments on and while anchored using a laptop and some LED lights and stereo?
What do you have to make up with your solar the next day while sailing again?
Have read anything from 100 ah to 500+ ah on those fill in charts......
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Old 22-07-2018, 08:15   #2
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Re: Real Time AH Use

Underway in the day in "normal" wave we use about 10 amps per hour. At night with the same we use about 14 amps per hour.

At anchor with normal use items, using laptop and tablets and watching around 3 hours TV/video at night we use about 120-140 AH/day

Lately in the morning we are out 60-85AH. If in the -60s AH and it is going to be sunny I do nothing and our 290W panel will mostly charge this. Every couple days I will run the generator in the morning to get the AH down to about -50 and make hot water (when the generator is down I do the same using the engine) and that will get a 98-99% full battery charge.

If cloudy and raining I just try to keep the batteries reasonably charged, more than 80%, but don't run the generator or engine once the batteries limit the charging amps.

BTW - I write down on our white board when we got a full battery charge and try to get one at least every week. Our batteries are rarely below 80% charge. My batteries are now 1.5 years old and seem to have not lost any capacity.
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Old 22-07-2018, 08:17   #3
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Re: Real Time AH Use

with what you posted Id say rough guess of 50 AH at anchor, double that when sailing.
a single 250W panel ought to cover it, most times.

however you didn't say refrigeration and most of us have that, then add in some TV watching and maybe running the inverter to vacuum the boat, or run a toaster and things start to get out of hand with power usage.
You will see wide variations because there is widespreads in usage.
I believe most people will use what they have, that in fact if you doubled their generation, eventually their usage would increase to use it. I think most of us have to watch and manage consumption
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Old 22-07-2018, 08:54   #4
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Re: Real Time AH Use

With simple clamp-on ammeters being cheap and so common, why guess?
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Old 22-07-2018, 09:01   #5
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Re: Real Time AH Use

Probably 100 ah a day with refrigeration at anchor. Laptop, some stereo, water pumps, night lights. At sea a lot more. Especially if autopilot and radar are in the mix.
I do know that with a 100 amp alternator and high output regulator I had to run one hour , twice a day to keep up. Then every 3rd day a bit more.
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Old 22-07-2018, 09:04   #6
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Re: Real Time AH Use

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Originally Posted by S/V Illusion View Post
With simple clamp-on ammeters being cheap and so common, why guess?
Those will only give you a guess, at snap shot in time if you will, it pretty much takes an AH counter to know, but they are so common and inexpensive now, why not?

My guess is though that he is trying to get a number to plan on, May not have a set up yet and is trying to determine how much Solar and how big a bank etc does he need.

I'd say as much of a bank you can afford or fit, cause the shallower you cycle it, the longer it lives, and as much Solar as you can afford or fit.
However of course that comes at the expense of some Sailing ability cause your adding weight and windage.

A little Honda is a great thing too, there is a huge amount of power in one of those little things
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Old 22-07-2018, 09:05   #7
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Re: Real Time AH Use

Approx 140Ah. Passage making which includes a night passage approx 200-220Ah.
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Old 22-07-2018, 09:13   #8
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Re: Real Time AH Use

Over a 24 hour period we average 175Ah/day at anchor and about 215Ah/day when under sail.

We have 5 people living aboard with the following items. 1 refrigerator, 1 freezer, lights, fans in each cabin, small LED TV, 2 laptops, 2 tablets, 3 Kindles, 3 Game Boys, washing machine (run on inverter), water pump, shower sump. Some days our power is way more, but some days its way down. It averages to 175(ish)Ah.

So our solar needs to replace about 90Ah at anchor and 115Ah while sailing. Its needs to also cover the 8-10A that we are drawing. We have 900W of solar. We rarely need to run the generator to charge our batteries.
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Old 22-07-2018, 14:50   #9
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Re: Real Time AH Use

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Over a 24 hour period we average 175Ah/day at anchor and about 215Ah/day when under sail.

We have 5 people living aboard with the following items. 1 refrigerator, 1 freezer, lights, fans in each cabin, small LED TV, 2 laptops, 2 tablets, 3 Kindles, 3 Game Boys, washing machine (run on inverter), water pump, shower sump. Some days our power is way more, but some days its way down. It averages to 175(ish)Ah.

So our solar needs to replace about 90Ah at anchor and 115Ah while sailing. Its needs to also cover the 8-10A that we are drawing. We have 900W of solar. We rarely need to run the generator to charge our batteries.
is your power plant documented in the everything about solar sticky? 900w of solar interests me as I also have a washing machine.
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Old 22-07-2018, 15:04   #10
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Re: Real Time AH Use

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is your power plant documented in the everything about solar sticky? 900w of solar interests me as I also have a washing machine.
No its not.. However I have documented the washing machine install on my blog. I have done some blogs about out panels and controllers, but don't think I have anything on the latest iteration.

TLDR:
Bank 1, 4 80W Shell panels in series to Victron 100/30
Bank 2, 2 150W Renogy panels in series to Victron 100/30
Bank 3, 2 100W "off-brand" panels in series to Victron 75/15
Bank 4, 1 100W panel to a chinese MPPT controller (I had an extra panel and controller).

If you are interested, I can post a link to the washing machine install.
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Old 22-07-2018, 17:38   #11
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Re: Real Time AH Use

We had a total of about 300 Ah deficit on our recent 40 days' passage.

This translates to about 8 Ah of daily deficit. This is overnight. Assume similar daytime use.

Makes some 15 Ah day use. Our 150W panels make this up by noon any given day, also overcast. Often we are 100% charged before 10 a.m.

At anchor we will use a bit more due to extensive use of two 11 inch netbooks and wifi. Again, solar panels charge full up by noon (because at anchor we can point our panels, which we hardly ever do while on a passage.)

Stuff always on:

- gps, ais (passive), vhf,
- nav / anchor light,
- cabin lights (plenty, LED),
- wifi (for ais, dsc and gps distribution, at sea; for fun, anchored)
- a tablet (at sea), netbooks (anchored)

Cheers,
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Old 22-07-2018, 17:39   #12
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Re: Real Time AH Use

Sounds like planning on a use of 200-275 ah a day is reasonable for a solo with refer, laptop and instrumentation/radios on. Would use about 60% of my 450 usable ah.
Need to replenish that plus carry the daily use in addition to charging.
Thinking 600 watts of panels? Need to replace my one 245 for a pair of 300-315 watt panels. Wrote Blue Sky to see if the 3000i will work.
THANKS for the real world numbers!
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Old 22-07-2018, 19:04   #13
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Re: Real Time AH Use

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If you are interested, I can post a link to the washing machine install.
I would appreciate that. Thanks
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Old 23-07-2018, 04:36   #14
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Re: Real Time AH Use

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I would appreciate that. Thanks
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Old 23-07-2018, 07:39   #15
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Re: Real Time AH Use

Why guess?

AH counters are $40-80 measure your own specific usage directly.
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