Hi, I’m Grant Headifen, Director of Education at NauticEd International Sailing Education. We recently became the North American and Caribbean associate for the Integrel. Personally, I have seen the Integrel operate on several boats and in the Lab in Hayle, UK. I have sat with the famous Nigel Calder and the UK based Engineers and been through the product thoroughly from my own engineering perspective (I hold a Masters Degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Texas at Austin). I can personally say that the Integrel is a game-changer for any off the grid service which includes RV’s and boats and it’s why we’ve have NauticEd engage in the product heavily now.
So here is our blog on my and my family’s recent experience around energy management – with a LOT of fun thrown in.
New Zealand RV Experience
We recently got off the grid while RVing around in New Zealand. No cell service, no electrical plug in, no fresh water. What a refreshing break but hard to get used to. All combined with a little disconnect anxiety, mostly from the kids not being able to play that dastly internet game of FortNite. Instead they had to swim in the ocean, boogie-board down sand dunes, hike to the northern most point of New Zealand, wonder through forests of Giant Kauri trees, and run on a silica squeaky beach to name a few.
But being off the grid has its comfort cost. At home we never have to manage our water or electricity except pay the bill. Essentially it is an unlimited supply. On a boat or an RV, it’s a different story.
On our New Zealand RV adventure, we rented an older 1980’s retro RV named “Myrtle”. She was great. The downside was managing the fridge and charging our devices was a challenge. Then at one point we ran out of water and had to resort to boiling water to wash dishes, drink and brush teeth. The RV battery also constantly ran low and even keeping lights on and charging basics like rechargeable flashlights (and the iPads) was a challenge. Not really any big big problem except for not having any cold bubbles or brews. Oh and the cheese and milk went off since we had not enough energy to run the fridge.
Having experienced this, I think I’d prefer to do the same type of adventure again but next time with ample energy at hand. And now there is a perfect solution – Integrel!
Integrel is an electric generator that looks much like an alternator and bolts onto the RV’s engine (or boat engine) much like an alternator. Integrel uses smart technology to draw the huge amount of excess energy off the drive engine and store that energy into Lithium Ion batteries at 48 volts. A 48 v DC to 12 v DC converter can then supply virtually unlimited amounts of 12 v DC energy as you like. A DC to AC inverter can also convert that energy into 110 v or 220 volt AC if desired. Integrel generates so much energy that you can feel like you’re back to the unlimited household supply. And if you run out, you can merely start the engine and run Integrel for ½ hour to charge the Lithium Ion batteries back up again.
With Integrel, also gone are the days of the awful noisy separate generator, managing extra fuel for the generator and the guilt of blasting out your campsite neighbors. Many parks do not allow generators of anysort to run in the park. With Integrel – you’re just running your drive engine for a few minutes – which is allowed.
Regardless of our energy challenges, here is a video of the highlights of our New Zealand adventure 2019-2020 with a discussion about energy thrown in at the start and finish. Check out the epic fun we had in New Zealand – off the grid.
This type of bucket-list adventure, whether it be New Zealand or elsewhere is a must do in your lifetime and whether it be once by hiring an RV or by buying one and exploring around.
Director of Education
Integrel North America/Caribbean