Options for Mobile & Manufactured Homes With Project Solar

Project Solar does not currently facilitate solar installations on mobile or manufactured homes. This article will explain why and explain exceptions for modular homes, as well as provide some recommendations for these types of projects. 

Recreational Vehicles: Motorhomes, Vans, etc.

With #VanLife's recent popularity, many van owners have begun to use solar as a power source. However, It's important to remember that residential solar systems and solar kits for vans & RVs are designed very differently.

Residential solar panels are designed to produce energy for an entire home: this functionality is not necessary for a smaller dwelling space like an RV, particularly because appliances used in RVs are typically smaller and more energy efficient. 

Another factor to consider is module size and capacity--residential solar panels are typically about 6ft long and 4ft wide, ranging from approximately 300W to 450W. They're built to withstand heavy snow loads and high wind gusts, which can also cause them to be quite heavy.

When we consider RVs' fuel efficiency and roof space, we can see that large panels like these are not usually a great option.

Most RV solar kits are under 1kW in size, which is below our minimum project system size (2kW). However, we do offer portable solar panels in conjunction with our Power Bank solar battery product line, which is a great option for RVs, vans, etc.

Van_Life__Power_Bank_2000.png

Our portable panels are streamlined for mobility, and even fold into a carrying case with an accessory pouch. Plus, these panels are a lower wattage (200W) and therefore cost less than a residential solar system would. 

Important note: our Power Bank cannot directly connect to a 30A RV cable, so you will need an adapter to reduce the draw to 15A. Otherwise, you can connect all your devices directly to your Power Bank. 

The bottom line is that the residential equipment that we source at Project Solar is not built for use on RVs, motorhomes, or vans, so it's generally a smarter choice to use a standalone power source--like our Power Bank and accessories--or go through a dedicated RV solar provider.

Manufactured Homes vs. Modular Homes

Due to structural limitations, Project Solar does not install on manufactured homes.

Though they are more similar to a site-built home than an RV, manufactured homes are still built in a warehouse or factory. They are then transported to a temporary or permanent foundation.

Manufactured homes are built to national structural requirements from the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Since they aren't built to local jurisdictional code, obtaining permits to install solar on manufactured homes can be virtually impossible.

Modular homes, on the other hand, are always built on a permanent foundation, and they're built in accordance with the same local code requirements as a site-built home. For this reason, Project Solar can usually install on modular homes.

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