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Old 11-06-2022, 09:34 AM   #1
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Exclamation Solar Power Issue

Hello everyone!
I'm a new owner of a 2022 Minnie Winnie FLX, and am experiencing issues with the fully charged battery running the A/C, even when nothing else is on, it discharges in less than a day, vs. the five days as promoted.
My dealer hasn't helped, has anyone else had this problem?

Model: MICR2108TB
VIN: 54CTM7K20N3074050
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Old 11-06-2022, 10:13 AM   #2
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According to Winnebago's promotional material, "5 integrated technologies support off-grid camping for up to 5 days." "Up to" are the key words, nor does it mention what you can run for 5 days:

https://www.winnebago.com/models/pro...?features=true

I read another thread that quotes experiencing 5 hours A/C (post #1). Post #11 in that thread mentions that the A/C draw is 140W on Vent and 1200W on Cool. The 140W will draw 11.6 amps (plus overhead) from your battery while the 1200W will draw 100A (plus overhead).

The standard battery configuration is 320Ah (amp hours), which isn't even close to powering a 100A draw for much more than a even a couple of hours at 100% A/C. The 5 hours is only possible since the A/C will be cycling on and off and 5-days A/C is pretty much impossible.

It's not a problem, you're just the victim of marketing hype.

Here's the other thread:

https://www.winnieowners.com/forums/...ew-364526.html

There are innumerable threads about running A/C off solar and batteries and the general conclusion is that it's possible but not without an inordinate investment in solar and batteries. It doesn't matter what RV you have, it's a matter of watts and amp hours.
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Old 11-06-2022, 02:05 PM   #3
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Thank you for all the helpful info.
I was hoping my brand new battery had a bad cell...
Minute 5-6 of this official promotional video contradicts our experience:

https://youtu.be/DEkmb536720
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Old 11-06-2022, 03:20 PM   #4
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Hard to believe dealer told you your A/C would run off the batteries for more than a couple of hours. Why not call the dealer who told you that and ask them if they are just misinformed, poorly trained or flat out lying. That kind of dealer behavior borders on fraud. I would then call Winnebago Customer Service and tell them you bought a Winnebago RV under the impression the dealer gave you that it would do something off the charts like running the A/C. Although your FLX is equipped with a lower amperage Truma system, there isn’t an A/C on the planet that will run more than a couple of hours on a fully charged FLX Lithionics. It would take more than 1,000 watts of solar array and a battery twice as large as yours to run sustained A/C operation. Not forever, but for a few daylight hours. Hope you will nonetheless be happy with your FLX. It’s a super advanced RV that many travel trailer owners are envious of.
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Old 11-07-2022, 08:00 AM   #5
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Thanks.
The video link above is from Winnebago.
That's their guy saying it's all now designed to function for 5-7 days...
I bought from Travelcamp.
I'm at dealer now for potential warranty service, and that's a process that's not addressed anything yet.
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Old 11-07-2022, 11:10 AM   #6
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The 320-amp hour Lithionics battery on your FLX model TT can typically run the A/C for 2-3 hour hours maximum AND when that time is up the battery will shut down and need many hours of charging - perhaps more than 24-hours - before it will again be charged up enough to fully function.

The whole "up to 5-days" really only relates to running the refrigerator and only the refrigerator. And the "up to" is really pie in the sky wishful thinking. Three days is more like it when running your TV and chargers, etc. If you use the microwave a little, plug in a coffee maker and such during those three days you can probably get 24 to 36 hours total.

That doesn't mean your new expensive TT is a pile of junk. If you had the same TT without the FLX items you couldn't make it 12 hours running the fridge and you'd not be able to run anything else without running a generator or connecting to shore power. So, the FLX gear a massive improvement.

I'm afraid you've been "sold" a story that's just not honest in all the details - sold that story from both Winnebago and your dealer. The "If you manage your electrical usage" is hidden language for, run the A/C an hour or so, don't use the microwave much and avoid using a lot of electrical items during the 5-days. It also counts on you being parked in a full-sun campsite with no trees, no clouds, in the sunniest states during the sunniest time of the year.

If your TT could run the A/C for 5x24 hours (120 hours) you would need over 15 of the same batteries, and the weight of the trailer would be too heavy to pull and the cost to purchase the TT would be about $17,000 higher than what you paid for yours. Not only that, it would take more than 5-days to recharge that battery bank back up to be able to use anything requiring batter power.

In other words - it can't be done.

Edit: the battery cost would be over $51,000 more. I underestimated the cost by a factor of three.
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Old 11-07-2022, 11:37 AM   #7
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JOlshan,
Watched the video, and the WBGO rep did say that the Truma A/C draws only 4 amps, and that you could boondock for 5-7 days using A/C. Well, marketing people always stretch the envelope of truth in the lab vrs actual use. In reality, his claim is just not possible even if the A/C draws 4 amps. Unless, and that a big unless the sun is perfect and the solar array is pumping out its maximum amperage every day. Just looking at the math:

12v fridge will use 50 ah/day at least
A/C would use 50 ah/day
All other demand about 20 ah/day
120 ah/day would drain the Lithionics in 2.7 days unless the solar array is pumping out 100 ah/day or more. I guess that’s possible because most 100w panels max out at about 30-35 amps/day in ideal conditions. So the FLX array can maybe do over 100 amp per day. I dunno, maybe you can verify that it does.

If the Truma really does cool a Micro Minnie on just 4 Amps, I’ll be first in line to buy one when they come onto the aftermarket. Dometic and Coleman units draw 12-14 amps.
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Old 11-07-2022, 12:18 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by JOlshan View Post
Thanks.
The video link above is from Winnebago.
That's their guy saying it's all now designed to function for 5-7 days...
I bought from Travelcamp.
I'm at dealer now for potential warranty service, and that's a process that's not addressed anything yet.
1. It's not your fault, you've been mislead by the video from Veurink's RV Center in Grand Rapids Mich. The narrator, Grant Smith, is a Winnebago employee and the video was filmed at the factory. This clearly makes Winnebago more than an accessory to the misinformation.

2. The narrator quotes the power consumption at "about 4A". This is consistent with Avena's website @ 4.2A - 4.4A, depending on the model, but could be an honest mistake on his part. It's possible the narrator grabbed some numbers without paying attention to the context. The reason for this is Avena is a German company and they characterize the 4.2A to 4.4A amp rating as being at 230V - 240V AC. This is the standard "mains" voltage in Germany and most of Europe. He also states that this is "very minimal when you have a 30A unit", which has everything to do with shore power and nothing to do with running off an inverter. The several-day comment is qualified by "depending on how you manage it". Here's a link to Truma's specs that details the 230v - 240V 4.2A to 4.4A rating:

https://www.truma.com/int/en/product...a-775bb9f169b4

3. Based on above, the amp rating at 120V AC (the "mains" voltage in the US) would be roughly twice the 240V amperage or 8.4A to 8.8A. Note that the following review characterizes it at 9.4A to 10.5A @120V based on the cooling level setting:

https://www.truckcamperadventure.com...r-conditioner/

4. Running off an inverter at 100% efficiency will put a load of ten times the 120V amperage (120V Amps x 120V/12V) or 84A to 105A depending on which 120V amp rating you use. If you run nothing else, assuming your inverter is 100% efficient, this would run down your 320Ah battery completely to zero in 3 to 3.8 hours with the compressor running constantly at 100%. Inverters are only about 85% to 90% efficient, which further reduces your hours.

5. I also note that the dealer that posted the video puts a disclaimer in comment #8: "FYI: THIS VIDEO WAS FILMED PRIOR TO FULL PRODUCTION BACK IN OCTOBER 2021. THERE MAY BE SLIGHT CHANGES IN THE ACTUAL 2022 PRODUCT MADE! THIS WAS A PRO-TOYPE BEFORE IT HIT PRODUCTION. "

Clearly there's a lot of misinformation and misleading information in this video with respect to power usage. Unfortunately, the only possible remedy is to have the dealer/Winnebago take your unit back for a full refund since there's nothing they can do to change the physics even if they wanted to. The amount of solar power and batteries required would be ridiculously expensive and might not even fit on your trailer.

I highly doubt that they're going to agree to take the unit back for full refund and the reality is that there's nothing "wrong" with your TT and no stock TT of any model or brand will run your A/C for five days on the inverter.

Keep us posted.
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Old 11-07-2022, 12:44 PM   #9
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Well stated Bob
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Old 11-07-2022, 01:14 PM   #10
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I hadn't watched the first part of the video and I do see that the narrator, Grant Smith, is a Winnebago employee and the video was filmed at the factory. This clearly makes Winnebago more than an accessory to the misinformation as I initially posted. I've since revised my post #8 accordingly.
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Old 11-07-2022, 02:23 PM   #11
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Yep, very misleading marketing. If you want to camp that long without shore power or generator you could realistically do it with 12 volt evaporative cooling but that would only work in dry areas of the world.
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Old 11-07-2022, 02:55 PM   #12
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Thanks for these wonderfully informative replies!
Ya'll have definitely helped educate this newbie.
Now I can much better know what is reasonable to expect from both my rig & Winnebago.
I'll definitely post back what happens.
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Old 11-07-2022, 03:40 PM   #13
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Thanks for these wonderfully informative replies!
Ya'll have definitely helped educate this newbie.
Now I can much better know what is reasonable to expect from both my rig & Winnebago.
I'll definitely post back what happens.
We're happy to be of assistance. Here's the math you need to drill into your head. You'll need it over and over when analyzing electrical problems:

Watts = Amps x Voltage

For any given appliance or device, watts are constant. A 1,200 Watt microwave will need 1,200 watts of power regardless of the voltage. As voltage goes down, the appliance has to make up the difference by drawing more amps to maintain a 1,200W draw. Conversely, as voltage increases, the appliance doesn't need to draw as many amps to maintain it's 1,200 amp draw.

Therefore:

1200W = 10A x 120V

1200W = 100A x 12V and so on.

This means that, an inverter, in order to supply 10A at 120V AC, will need to draw 100A from a 12V DC source, assuming the converter is 100% efficient. At 90% efficiency, it will need to draw 100A/.9 = 111.1A from a 12V source. At 85% efficiency, it will need to draw 100A/.85 = 117.6A.
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Old 11-07-2022, 05:22 PM   #14
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We're happy to be of assistance. Here's the math you need to drill into your head. You'll need it over and over when analyzing electrical problems:

Watts = Amps x Voltage

For any given appliance or device, watts are constant. A 1,200 Watt microwave will need 1,200 watts of power regardless of the voltage. As voltage goes down, the appliance has to make up the difference by drawing more amps to maintain a 1,200W draw. Conversely, as voltage increases, the appliance doesn't need to draw as many amps to maintain it's 1,200 amp draw.

.
I'll have to disagree, besides the fact that modern microwaves are almost entirely resistive, watts (power) is only constant on an inductive load, on a resistive load when voltage drops so does current, and the result is less watts (power) produced.
example: a heating element rated 1,200 watts @120V will draw 10 amps at it rated voltage of 120. Ohm's law tells us that the resistance of the element is therefore 12 Ohms (E/I=R). Now we drop the voltage to 100. Using Ohm's law again we divide the resistance into the voltage to get the current(E/R=I) or (100/12=8.33) so the element is now only using 8.33 amps of current and only producing 833.33 watts of power. The resistance cannot change and since voltage is the pressure that pushes current thru a resistor less current gets thru.(see pic)
An inductive load like our air conditioning compressors are a constant power load, we are not pushing current thru them, they are drawing current. The power on an inductive load cannot change so when voltage drops it pulls more current per Ohm's law.
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Old 11-07-2022, 05:38 PM   #15
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I'll have to disagree, modern microwaves are almost entirely resistive. Watts (power) is only constant on an inductive load, on a resistive load when voltage drops so does current, and the result is less watts (power) produced.
I guess I picked the wrong appliance for what I intended to be a simple explanation of the relation between watts, amps and voltage.
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Old 11-08-2022, 08:26 AM   #16
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This is not the first video involving a Winnebago employee making blatantly false statements about the capabilities of their RVs. I think they are not trying to deceive people as much as boast about their features. It’s marketing speak gone awry. Winnebago corporate needs to take steps to avoid this kind of thing.
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Old 11-08-2022, 08:29 AM   #17
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This is not the first video involving a Winnebago employee making blatantly false statements about the capabilities of their RVs. I think they are not trying to deceive people as much as boast about their features. It’s marketing speak gone awry. Winnebago corporate needs to take steps to avoid this kind of thing.
Sale people are often just that, and don't have an understanding of how things work. Over 20 years ago we went to look at a new "green" housing development, the realtor that was showing us one of the models insisted that the home could run entirely off it's patch of solar panels on the roof, including air conditioning, and did not need the grid.
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Old 11-08-2022, 07:10 PM   #18
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1. It's not your fault, you've been mislead by the video from Veurink's RV Center in Grand Rapids Mich. The narrator, Grant Smith, is a Winnebago employee and the video was filmed at the factory. This clearly makes Winnebago more than an accessory to the misinformation.
This is interesting because I bought my FLX at Veurink’s and my salesman was very honest and I would say fairly accurate regarding the capabilities. Not trying to defend them because overall I was not impressed with my experience there. I didn’t pay attention to when the video was posted but I bought mine at the end of September so maybe they wised up some since the video. They had the bunk house version there labeled “demo” and when I asked my salesman what that meant and he said one of the other salesman (the guy in the video I believe) took it out for the weekend with his family to see how well it did and after his trip he figured max 3 days without A/C and with some power conservation.

We took our 2108 DS out for a weekend (2 nights) and returned home at 40% running the furnace (at night) and fridge the whole time. Initially we sort of conserved power but the first morning we were still at 70 some % so we weren’t too restrictive on power after that. Our campsite was in the woods so the solar panels did not get a lot of good direct sunlight. I think that it did quite well. Most of the other trailers in the park ran generators during the day while ours was never started.
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