Installing our Solar Panels and Completing our Electrical Setup

Our dad came a couple of weeks ago to help us put outlets in the bus and bring all of the wires to the back to be connected to power, and our goal this last weekend was to hook everything up. When it came to installing solar batteries and an inverter and wiring it all into a circuit breaker, we needed someone with experience to help us. So, our cousin Lee, who is an electrician drove from Arkansas to help, and we are so thankful!

We don’t have many outlets in the bus. So, it wasn’t too complicated or expensive to purchase the breakers required. We made a “garage” in the back of our bus. It’s 3' deep by 7' wide by 6' high where we have our solar batteries, inverter, circuit breaker, charge controller. Lee and Jeremiah did such a great job of making everything neat and tidy.

Our solar setup consists of four 100 watt Renogy Eclipse Monocrystalline panels, a 12 volt 3000 watt AIM pure sine wave inverter/charger, and two 175 ah VMAX AGM batteries. It’s a pretty minimal setup, but we don’t plan on using a crazy amount of power. The largest draw we’ll have on a regular basis is our refrigerator, but if we need to upgrade, we will. Either way, we can also hook up to shore power.

Jeremiah attaching mounts to the panels.
Jeremiah and Lee deciding on the placement of the panels.
Our solar array

Completing this project is so exciting for us. It’s been one of the most intimating projects we’ve had, but it turned out to be pretty simple. Now, we feel more knowledgeable and confident about troubleshooting everything ourselves in the future, if necessary.

The Jamisons are a family of four converting a Chevy Blue Bird school bus into their tiny home. Follow us here, on Instagram and Twitter @_thejamisons, or on YouTube. Also, if you want to support this publication or our YouTube channel consider becoming a Patron.

Writer, English teacher, MFA holder