Autocruise & Solar Panel

Discussion in 'Autocruise CH' started by keith, Oct 18, 2007.

  1. keith

    keith Funster

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    I have a new Autocruise Starseeker that, according to the hand book, has connection & controler for a solar panel built into the system.
    Anyone know how to wire the panel up to the Autocruise Electric Management System?
    The system will then tell how much power the panel is providing using one of the buttons on the control panel.

    Keith
     
  2. adventure

    adventure Read Only Funster

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    Hi Keith

    I did not know so I enquired and was told that there are two wires behind a false panel normally near to the TV aerial, if you look into a cupboard there should be two screws holding the panel in place, if you are not sure tap the sides of the locker the hollow one will sound ? hollow

    But you need to switch on the solar panel control within the managment system, I was told that this entails entering an engineers code that only the dealers have, not sure if this is true it may be worth calling the factory or the people who make the control panel, my guess it would be sargent but it should say on some paperwork in the van.

    Sorry I can't be more help

    Nick
     
  3. Teasy2007

    Teasy2007 Funster

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    Autocruise

    Hi we bought a new Autocruise Starburst from the York show and were horrified to find that Autocruise have been bought out by Swift at the end of October. Our 3 year warranty lasted exactly 3 weeks. As part of the sales pitch the Autocruise Sales Rep promised if we bought a solar panel at the show, they would fit it at the Factory for free! He said it was a very easy and quick job as all the fittings were already in the van, including, as you say the setup within the management system. We thought this was great, but now we are not sure they will fit it because all warranty and habitation checks are not being done by Autocruise in Swinton anymore, only those jobs already booked in will be completed!

    We bought the motorhome from Marquis Suffolk, and to give them their due they have been fantastic. We have received a 3 year warranty from them! replacing the warranty from Autocruise.

    Ginny
     
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  4. keith

    keith Funster

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    There is a guy from Swift called Peter Smith who has been instumental in getting Fiat to do something about the water ingress problem. So when they (Swift) took over Auotcruise I wrote to him to find out about the warranty with Autocruise.
    I have not got his reply as I have not renewed my subs on the facts forum, but he confirmed Swift would be willing to cover any reasonable warranty problems.
    I also like you went to the dealer as well & they also confirmed they would be prepared to help with any problems under warranty. The dealer also reminded me that many of the systems within the motor home are covered by the different makers warranties in case.
    So I am hoping they are all as good as their word, & I have already had help from Peugeot & the dealer with small problems that have been rectified.

    Keith
     
  5. keith

    keith Funster

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    Thanks for that adventure. I have discovered the wires but had a sneaking suspision there would be something else needed doing, but I will follow your idea of contacting the control panel manufactures. The wires were at the opposite end of the bank of cupboards just behind the driver seat. but as you said behind a panel in the cupboard.

    Keith
     
  6. roadtraveller

    roadtraveller Read Only Funster

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    Autocruise

    Hi teasy, we have always had motor homes from Autocruise Tewkesbury, their after sales is brilliant, we lost our Starblazer in the floods, and we have had to order a new Motor Home from them, who have now been taking over by Swift, I hope they are as good. The guys at Tewkesbury couldn't have been more supportive and helpful during this very stressing time, for both of us, we only had the other Motor Home a year.
     
  7. keith

    keith Funster

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    Contacted Autocruise (yes there is somebody still there) & was sent complete instructions on how to do it. :BigGrin:

    Will try it soon & see if it works.

    Does this make me an expert for Jim new expert panel ? :Rofl1::Rofl1:

    Keith
     
  8. Geo

    Geo Trader - Funster

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    No sorry Keith,
    To become an expert you have to copy the info and instructions on to CD and sell it on Flea-Bay for 99p + £30 postage:Rofl1:
    then its official
    Geo
     
  9. Will

    Will Read Only Funster

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    Got to agree with you re Marquis of Tewkesbury . Their service dept is brilliant, and the lovely Kirsty is so helpful.
    Will
     
  10. pip1755

    pip1755 Funster

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    Hi Keith, I hope you're still on the Forum.
    You may just have the information I've been looking for. We have a Autocruise Augusta with the Kigass Energy Management System. I will be installing a 100 watt solar panel and I understand the built-in solar regulator has to be 'enabled' before it starts working. I've looked everywhere and I'm struggling to find this information as to how I can do this and then I came across your post (from some time ago).
    So here's hoping you (or anyone else with this information) can help me to enable the regulator.
    Thanks

    PS Have tried Marquis of Tewkesbury but without having the van in front of them they weren't able to help.
     
  11. John Laidler

    John Laidler Funster

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    Welcome to Fun, though I see you have been a member for a while so hopefully are used to the banter here. It would be unfair on your first post to put you forward for the "Necroposter of the Year Award" so I won't! :)

    But the OP is still here and @keith might get his attention.

    My only comment is if the MH came with a "free" solar controller is it a good one? Lacking any evidence my suggestion would be to get a good MPPT controller and wire that in, utilising any wires going to the roof if you can. The problem might be the inbuilt controller might be a cheap shunt type as mine had originally. You can lose 30% of the potential solar power with one of these. Their only advantage is they are cheap.
     
  12. keith

    keith Funster

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    Sorry for the delay pip(?) but I have only just seen your post.
    Our Autocruise also has the same ECU and I have had it for 9 years now without any problems.
    I fitted our solar panels and managed to find out that the connection to the solar panels was already installed, the problem that I and others had was finding where the connections were. Mine are behind the panel in the first cupboard behind the drivers seat, yours may be in a different cupboard. Remove screws and the panel comes away with the connections waiting to be connected, so simply run the wire through the roof above them.
    There is no setting up as the ECU will simply know if there is a solar panel connected and thereafter show the input you are receiving from the solar.
    If you fit an alternative controller it may not show on the ECU display as the fitted one is clearly included in the wiring system.
     
  13. keith

    keith Funster

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    Sorry duf information. You do have to set up the ECU and I have the details. I will photograph it for you if you will send me your email by personal message.
     
  14. keith

    keith Funster

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    OK here is a pic of directions if that's OK your fixed. GEDC1158.JPG

    That looks clear enough :)
     
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  15. pip1755

    pip1755 Funster

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    :)Hi Keith, thanks for all the very useful information. Our Kigass EMS panel can be setup using your instructions. My only problem is finding the solar connector. There is a false panel in the overhead locker which also has the Status amplifier but there isn't a connector behind it. Likewise the locker right behind the driver seat. So I'm doing a bit of head scratching, perhaps behind the microwave? There is an unused cable entry gland on the roof in this area but no sign of the connector inside.
    Any further thoughts or suggestions would be most helpful :)
     
  16. pip1755

    pip1755 Funster

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    The journey continues: I've removed the microwave but there is no sign of the "solar connector" here either. So that's all the high level cupboards behind the drivers seat checked. I can't imagine it would be further back in the bedroom area?

    The other option may be to bypass the Autocruise cable but I will need to know if this cable directly connects to the 12volt control unit under the drivers seat.

    I think it could be the small jst-lr type connector on the side of the under seat control unit. It currently has a twin core cable inserted and this disappears under the floor. Is this the missing solar cable connector? If anyone can provide further help or information it would be much appreciated.
     

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  17. keith

    keith Funster

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    According to the wiring diagram the wires are Black & white & Red & White and they are shown coming out of the control box. Do you have the diagram pip
     
  18. keith

    keith Funster

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    This shows the wiring for the SolarPanel, it's in the middle at the top
    GEDC1177.JPG
     
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  19. keith

    keith Funster

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  20. pip1755

    pip1755 Funster

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    Hi Keith, that's really helpful. I never did get a copy of the wiring diagram.

    So if I can't find the hidden solar cables I could wire into the harness with the benefit of you information. From the pictures I took yesterday I can see which connector I need to look at.

    Would there be any possibility of you being able to copy all of the wiring diagram so I can put it into our motorhome folder. Either as two separate images or whatever works for you. If you preferred to PM this that would be fine too. I could see that information being very useful in the future.

    I just need to think 'out the box' where Autocruise may have hidden the black/red & black/white pair in our Augusta, I've yet to find them. If there are any constructive suggestions out there, they would be welcome.
     
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