Solar Panels & Camping

There’s nothing like hitting the rugged outback in your 4×4.

Camping LanternWith your esky loaded to capacity, tent and outdoor gear packed in your vehicle, it’s time to hit the open road – destination uncertain, but fun guaranteed. The only problem that comes to mind is electricity.

Because you don’t want to limit yourself to camping at places with power, you need an alternative power source. How else will you keep your 12V fridge/freezer running, your beers cold and your food fresh? Solar power of course. Luckily, these days solar panels are not confined to home rooftops. You can take one with you on your camping trip and use it to recharge your 12V batteries – it’s always advisable to have an additional secondary battery in your car to run your appliances from.

In addition to your freezer/fridge, there is a wide range of 12V appliances and accessories out there, designed to make your road trip more comfortable and safer at the same time. If you’re going to camp, do it properly, rough it a bit. But if you can charge your secondary battery, phone, camera, and even your kids games while miles away from any power source, what a bonus. The sun is your friend.

12V solar panels are the solution to all your power needs. They are environmentally friendly, reliable and simply a great way to harness all the energy you’ll need from the sun. All you need are some solar panels, which are specifically designed for vehicle application, and can be placed on the roof of your trailer or vehicle. They are robust and can survive the harshest of conditions. They also work in a variety of weather conditions, which means you don’t need clear blue skies to fulfil your energy requirements.

So your sun catcher is sorted, now all you need is a REDARC’s 12V 25A In-Vehicle Battery Charger. This battery charger is designed to fully charge all your 12V batteries no matter what size.

The in-vehicle battery charger features a Maximum Power Point Tracking solar regulator, which allows for the maximum amount of power to be delivered from your solar panels to your auxiliary battery.

You now have your energy source and your battery system to harness that energy, but what exactly can you power with your auxiliary 12V battery?


Sure you’ll be sitting around a campfire but when you need to find that bottle of bourbon stashed in your 4b, a 12V led powered light will help. You might also have a rechargeable headlamp battery, which you can now recharge whenever you need to.

USB Charger

Get yourself a USB charger that is powered by a 12V battery. This way you can charge any of your devices including your phone, iPad, camera etc. Just make sure that everything you need to charge can be charged before you go away. Check every device before you leave, you don’t want to be caught short when you are hundreds of kilometres from anywhere.

Don’t buy the cheapest charger you can find, get recommendations, do some research and make sure you are buying a hardy and reliable charger.

If you really can’t do without certain home appliances, but you really want to do this road trip, you will definitely find that there is large variety of 12V-powered appliances out there. This includes cooking stoves, heaters, washing machines, toasters, coffee makers and vacuum cleaners, to name a few. But if you really need all those appliances, maybe you shouldn’t go camping. So take only what you need, making sure you are safe and comfortable without being too spoilt for luxuries. You’re out there to enjoy nature after all.

For all your 4×4 needs and accessories, contact your local Perth off-road specialists at Coastal 4×4.