2 Regulators on 1 Panel?

Discussion in 'Solar Power' started by Kon tiki, May 11, 2009.

  1. Kon tiki

    Kon tiki Read Only Funster

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    Is it possible to fit 2 regulators taking the the input from one sinlge panel? I have my leisure battery connected to the solar panel via the regulator. I was wondering :RollEyes: if I could also take the solar panel output through another regulator & connect it to the engine battery. Would this cause any problems? I wasn't intending to leave this connected all the time but just connect it when I am parked for a while to keep the engine battery topped up.
    I know that there are products like the battery master at around £60 but I have a regulator with a Maplins suitcase solar panel but can't leave it connected all the time as it isn't waterproof :Sad: so I was considering if I can split the solar panel output. I could easily connect it via the cigarette lighter socket as this is always live on the Renault.
     
  2. Wildman

    Wildman Read Only Funster

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    No problem Ed, the charge voltage remains the same and current (amps) divides between the two. so your 130 W would be the equivelant of 65W per battery, that is not very efficient use as you have losses in both regulators.

    I actually have another system, similar to the battery master but switchable so excess charge be it from the engine or solar or solar and wind can be switched, so when drivin the leaisure is topped up from the Alternator and when parked (over winter maybe) the Solar keeps the main battery topped up. (regulated and controlled power so neither nattery will over charge) will be selling for £45 if there is sufficient interest. Anyone interested please let me know I will make them available via Jim so the site gets a contribution.
     
  3. 45eEver

    45eEver Read Only Funster

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    Kon Tiki, your engine battery should last a month between charges, if you are not running things from it.

    If you wish to keep it charged during longer static periods, an intelligent mains charger is probably a cheaper and better option if you have mains electricity.
    This charger is probably very cost effective.
    Buy 12 Amp 12 Volt Automatic Battery Charger. at Argos.co.uk - Your Online Shop for .

    If you haven't mains electricity, and can't take your batteries home, then, as Wildman says, two regulators will get you what you want.
    Two regulators may even be the best option when if you go the solar cell route.
    If your storage batteries are a different type to your starter battery, say gel versus unsealed lead acid.
    In that instance, you need to suit your regulators to your battery type

    Remember though: -
    What is effective in summer, probably produces less than 20% of it's high summer output during short winter days.
     
  4. Kon tiki

    Kon tiki Read Only Funster

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    I had to have the engine battery replaced in Portugal, the van was less than 4 months old :cry: This was done under warranty, I have been getting a bit paranoid about the engine battery & even the new battery doesn't seem to keep the charge too well. The van has been standing for about a week on the drive & the battery is down to just fractionally over 12 volts, all thats on is the alarm. I am thinking about getting it checked out at the Renault garage while it's still under warranty.
    I can stick it on the mains hook up while we are at home, is it a good idea to leave it on continually?
    As for it not being that efficient, I find I have excess power from the solar panel at the moment. I think it is about 80 watts & my leisure battery is 85 amp Gel. This is usually full by mid morning. I would be fitting it with a switch so I can just occasionally charge the engine battery if needed.
     
  5. nomadic

    nomadic Funster

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    Hi Kon Tiki

    Just a thought, is your cab radio always on standby, ours was, and we suffered low and flat batt. :Sad:

    Rewired radio to leisure batt. no more problems.

    Nomadic
     
  6. 45eEver

    45eEver Read Only Funster

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    Kon Tiki, it's a very good idea to leave your M/H on mains hook up if you have an intelligent charger that automatically goes to a maintenance charge when your batteries are full.

    I'm afraid that 12 volts tells you little or nothing about your starter battery.
    If you are concerned about it, take it back.
    But don't tell them you've run it down to 12 volts or they'll tell you that you have ruined your battery yourself.

    At 12 volts, your starter battery could be anywhere between 5% and 40% charged.
    Anything below 50% for a starter battery ruins it.

    That's 12 volts open circuit.
    Ie, with nothing using electricit from your battery.

    Check this page for a state of charge against voltage graph for a starter.
    About 1/4 the way down.
    Battery State of Charge Determination
     
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