Best RV Solar Panels

Jason Loomis
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RV solar panels are a great way to supply some of your own power while out RV camping.

They are a lot more efficient than traditional solar panels and you can connect them directly to your RV battery.

If you need more power or want to run your air conditioner, campers can now plug into the power grid as well as many parks now have charging stations for electric cars also.

Whether you are looking for the best RV solar panels for your camper, or down to upgrade your existing set up, hopefully you can find some information here that can help you make a decision.

Below you'll find the best RV solar panels I could find, detailed reviews on them and what to consider before buying an RV solar panel kit.

NameCategoryProduct
Newpowa 100 Watts 12 Volts Polycrystalline Solar Panel 100W 12V High Efficiency Module Rv Marine Boat Off GridBest OverallNewpowa 100 Watts 12 Volts Polycrystalline Solar Panel 100W 12V High Efficiency Module Rv Marine Boat Off Grid
RICH SOLAR 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Solar Panel High Efficiency Solar Module Charge BatteryBudget PickRICH SOLAR 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Solar Panel High Efficiency Solar Module Charge Battery
WindyNation 100 Watt Solar Panel Off-Grid RV Boat KitUpgrade PickWindyNation 100 Watt Solar Panel Off-Grid RV Boat Kit

1. Newpowa 100 Watts 12 Volts Polycrystalline Solar Panel 100W 12V High Efficiency Module Rv Marine Boat Off Grid

Our rating: 9 / 10

Newpowa 100 Watts 12 Volts Polycrystalline Solar Panel 100W 12V High Efficiency Module Rv Marine Boat Off Grid

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Pros:

  • Very durable and resistant to damage
  • Amazingly lightweight
  • Easy and quick to set up (just mount and plug in like the name implies)
  • Comes with a 30-year warranty
  • Sturdy carrying bag
  • Includes all the necessary parts such as cables, clamps and fittings

For those who like to go off the grid, this is one of the best solar panels available today.

If you are wondering what solar panels are exactly, you can think of it as a battery that absorbs and stores solar energy and releases it when it is needed.

From small devices to huge solar farms, they are flexible solutions for a wide range of applications. Some people also use them to become off-grid independent from the centralized power generators. To put that into perspective, there are over 200,000 solar panels in the United States alone.

2. Renogy 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Off Grid Portable Foldable 2Pcs 50W Solar Panel Suitcase Built-in Kickstand

Our rating: 9 / 10

Renogy 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Off Grid Portable Foldable 2Pcs 50W Solar Panel Suitcase Built-in Kickstand

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Pros:

  • This portable solar kit comes with everything you need for solar charging and setup
  • It includes Friction Divers for holding panels in place
  • It has an attached stand – no need for holes to be drilled into the RV
  • It’s more of a suitcase than extra panels
  • Perfect for a weekend getaway

Cons:

  • The extension cords are short
  • Not ideal for long-term use

Even with a big RV, there are times when you don’t have access to an electrical hookup. This could be because of the location, or maybe it’s just a campground option you didn’t pick.

The most obvious way to power your electrical devices in this case is to use a generator, but that’s expensive and polluting – not to mention loud.

This is where the Renogy 100 Watt Plug and Play Portable Solar Kit comes into play.

3. RICH SOLAR 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Solar Panel High Efficiency Solar Module Charge Battery

Our rating: 8 / 10

RICH SOLAR 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Solar Panel High Efficiency Solar Module Charge Battery

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Pros:

  • High-efficiency crystalline solar panel that charges off-grid theta/delta/wound battery at the fastest possible rate
  • Durable & rugged PVC/silicone solar panel frame that can withstand outdoor elements
  • Waterproof junction box to prevent units from short-circuiting
  • Includes high-efficiency MC4 connectors; perfect and interchangeable with RICH solar CPT series
  • Integrated LED light indicators display the power status; this makes it easy to control the charge process
  • Sufficiently sized cables for the battery to prevent damage and breakage

Cons:

  • The electrical charge should not exceed 55V
  • The charge rate decreases as the battery voltage increases or wiring resistance increases
  • The electrical charge may be slower with longer wire runs or under a covered roof; this is due to the decrease in solar panel output caused by indoor lighting from sun/shading effects (especially from colors with a lot of blue)

The RICH solar 100 watt 12 volt Monocrystalline panel is a high-efficiency crystalline solar panel. It can charge the 12V battery of your RV, trailer, cabin, boat, caravan, or camper at a rate that’s faster than any solar panel can.

4. Mighty Max Battery 100 Watts 100W Solar Panel 12V

Our rating: 8 / 10

Mighty Max Battery 100 Watts 100W Solar Panel 12V

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Pros:

  • Maximum 15 Amp charging
  • Waterproof, durable and lightweight (only 44.6 lbs) – great for camping and hiking backpack trips
  • Charge and discharge safety protection system
  • Six years manufacturer warranty and 45 days money back guarantee (extremely rare among solar panels)
  • Works in extreme temperatures (-40‡ F to 176? F)
  • Available at 100, 75, 50, and 30 Watt sizes
  • Can work even without sunlight

5. Winnewsun Flexible Solar Panel,SunPower Solar Panel 100w 18V 12V,Lightweight Flexible Solar Power Panels

Our rating: 7 / 10

Winnewsun Flexible Solar Panel,SunPower Solar Panel 100w 18V 12V,Lightweight Flexible Solar Power Panels

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Pros:

  • SunPower brand panels
  • Made of high quality, light-weight materials
  • Designed for use on solar vehicle and other portable applications
  • High-performance versions designed for solar vehicle
  • Excellent customer service
  • Long product life and durability

Cons:

  • Quite expensive compared to some of the other options
  • Visit website to purchase solar panels and comparison to other brands for price and quality

The SunPower solar panels (known as the Solar Juice) are high-performance 18-Volt, 100-Watt flexible PV panels for RV and to replace LFP batteries.

These panels are made of Ag/Al alloy cells, with 10mm laminated glass boards. They have a solar power conversion efficiency of 18.5%, which is ultra-high.

The SunPower solar panels are specifically designed to produce less heat, especially when they are generating electricity. The exceptionally strong aluminum frames have a durable structure that makes them perfect to be mounted and used as they are.

6. BougeRV 170 Watts Monocrystalline Solar Panel 12 Volts Mono Solar Cell Charger High Efficiency Module

Our rating: 7 / 10

BougeRV 170 Watts Monocrystalline Solar Panel 12 Volts Mono Solar Cell Charger High Efficiency Module

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Pros:

  • Sold at an amazing price
  • The company offers a 1-year warranty
  • The average output is about 140 watts

Our top rated RV solar panel is the BougeRV 170 Watts Monocrystalline Solar Panel that falls into the mid-range price category.

Though its 170-watt monocrystalline solar panel comes in second place on the list of best solar panels for RVs, this model has something other panels can do without – a unique design.

Though the BougeRV 170 Watts Panels may not be the most powerful on the market, it more than makes up for it with its sleek and attractive design. Plus, it’s also lightweight and easy to install because of the mounting holes that are compatible with most standard RV designs.

7. WindyNation 100 Watt Solar Panel Off-Grid RV Boat Kit

Our rating: 6 / 10

WindyNation 100 Watt Solar Panel Off-Grid RV Boat Kit

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Pros:

  • Highly efficient
  • Brand you can trust
  • Gives long-term value
  • C3 Technology is powerful but easy on the batteries
  • Customer service is good

Cons:

  • The system is not as simple as others on the market
  • The product can get quite heavy when you purchase the accessories
  • Limited to just 5 years of warranty

The WindyNation solar panel kit offers three different levels of power – the first, 235W, offers generous power for smaller RV applications; the second level, at 355W, is best suited to an RV, but can still be used for most other remote power supply projects; the top level of power is this 100-watt RV solar panel kit.

This is a great addition to your RV or camper. It features C3 technology and a 30A PWM charge controller. The C3 technology is a solar innovation that has made WindyNation 30% more powerful than its competitors. They achieve this through a patent-pending, copper-wire, Nickel Zinc (NiZn) cell design that is incredibly efficient while having a very high durability rate.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Who makes the best RV solar panels?

Is solar power the best option for your recreational vehicle? It depends.

Solar roof-top panels can reduce the amount of fuel you consume while running your AC for extended periods of travel time, but they may not always be the best choice. A roof-top solar system needs to be sized to match your needs, and that can get expensive.

Depending on your situation, you may find panels that plug into your RV’s electrical system to be a better alternative. Using a 12-volt solar panel, you can make some easy electrical upgrades that will keep your accessories charged while saving you gas dollars in the long run.

At the end of the day, only you can decide whether solar-powered power is right for you.

Are solar panels for an RV worth it?

When buying an RV, it’s always good to look up reviews for it. By far the most common point of complaint among new RV owners is about the small size of the onboard battery. Unfortunately, this is usually a deal breaker. While some people have success with adding additional solar panels to the roof, it’s not a great idea. The bigger solar panels you add, the more it zaps from the vehicle’s engine performance. Many owners also regret having solar panels on the roof. It’s a great idea to add solar panels to an RV, but I recommend you install them on the side or underneath the vehicle.

How many solar panels do I need for my RV?

The size of your RV will play a factor in how much solar power you need. A standard RV might be smaller than a 5th wheel and only requires about 30 watts of power. A 5th wheel can eat up to 50 or 60 watts.

My Recommendation for Big Families: The Maytag MVWX500VW Top Load Washing Machine

Thousands of people have left positive reviews of this fantastic washing machine. We have used it in our family for years and it is still going strong.

What are the most efficient solar panels?

It’s important to buy the most efficient solar panels you can afford to ensure that it will save you money instead of costing you money to own your solar system. Companies often claim high efficiency up front, but when it’s time to buy, you discover that the efficiency is much lower than advertised. Plus, a higher efficiency means a higher panel price, so you pay less to generate the same amount of electricity.

Conclusion

As you must have gathered by now, RV Solar panels are designed and sized for portable RV units. Most of these are not certified for off-grid or long-term applications and are not expected to perform like an ordinary, on-grid solar system. They are also not designed to provide power to appliances while you’re parked at campgrounds because of the risk of overloading the panels and causing a fire. For these reasons, it’s important to buy a high-quality solar system that will keep your battery charged.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Newpowa 100 Watts 12 Volts Polycrystalline Solar Panel 100W 12V High Efficiency Module Rv Marine Boat Off GridBest OverallNewpowa 100 Watts 12 Volts Polycrystalline Solar Panel 100W 12V High Efficiency Module Rv Marine Boat Off Grid
RICH SOLAR 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Solar Panel High Efficiency Solar Module Charge BatteryBudget PickRICH SOLAR 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Solar Panel High Efficiency Solar Module Charge Battery
WindyNation 100 Watt Solar Panel Off-Grid RV Boat KitUpgrade PickWindyNation 100 Watt Solar Panel Off-Grid RV Boat Kit