folding solar panels

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by camocam1, Jan 6, 2015.

  1. camocam1

    camocam1 Read Only Funster

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    I am thinking about buying one of these folding solar panels for use when using CLS with no EHU but would just be occasional use so has anyone got one ?? Are they any good ???
    Was thinking about 100watt but would I get away with 80watt don't watch much TV so would be lights pump etc
     
  2. Bertie Bassett

    Bertie Bassett Read Only Funster

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    Can't answer the question cam but will follow the thread with interest, as we are thinking of getting one too.
     
  3. Yorick

    Yorick Funster

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    Ditto :)
     
  4. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    They work well as you can angle towards the sun as it crosses the sky thus increasing efficiency
    ...But you need to keep a constant eye on them, they walk easily unless really well secured to something immovable.
    Not everyone is as honest as you would like.
     
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  5. Minxy Girl

    Minxy Girl Funster Life Member

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    First question - what battery bank have you got? No point in solar unless you've got something to store the energy you'll produce and you may find that you actually don't need solar at all if you add an extra battery ...

    We have a 75w panel and 2 x 110 amp batteries and never ever use hook-up or sites for that matter.
     
  6. wizzer59

    wizzer59 Funster

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    As long as you buy a decent one it will be even better than a roof mounted 80w cos you angle it to the sun, so should be fine for what you require, you will still need a decent controller as well, some of the supplied controllers can leave a little to be desired(y)
     
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  7. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    slightly off topic.. but just out of interest ..

    I like basic CLs with no EHU, usually a LOT quieter and cheaper.. but they are getting quite rare..

    I have searched for a list of Non - EHU CLs but can't find one.. so I searched on CC site for all CLs

    Total number of CLs = 2415

    With EHU = 1869..

    So only 546 without EHU..
     
  8. Techno

    Techno Funster Life Member

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  9. oldmanriver

    oldmanriver Read Only Funster

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    we have a folding solar panel, only used it once but worked fine and if you sell the motorhome you can take the panel with you
     
  10. tonka

    tonka Funster Life Member

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    For the cost of a panel and the bits on ebay my choice would be fit on roof and forget,,,
    Seen a few at rallies and while the concept is good, In practice my main worry would be some bugger pinching it, or knocking it.. Even saw someone with a dog and let it "piddle" up it !! Lovely when you have to pack it away and put in the van..
    Performance wise I dont think there will be much to compare with a flat roof mounted one, so more down to practicality.
     
  11. Wildman

    Wildman Read Only Funster

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    I beg to differ in not much to choose between a roof mounted and stand alone. Provided you keep the angles right they are 50% more efficient. You have to remember though that whilst it is deployed you cannot leave the van or sure as eggs are eggs it will walk away. I have a number on the roof but also one in the front window of the van. Provided I keep the van facing south the batteries are recharged by the time we are ready to move on every day.
     
  12. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    Have you ever run out of power yet? IF the answer is yes then your first option should be to fit a extra L/B -cost = 75 quidish-£65 for 110amp hr battery and £10 for leads (y)After fitting see if you run out of power (y)Chances are you want one rather than need one:D and to be honest the cost of panels are falling all the time -£150 or less buys a 100w solar panel with fitting kit so once fitted it won't get nicked :)not saying your folding one will either but?
    Back to the first question?
    terry
     
  13. tonka

    tonka Funster Life Member

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    :) As soon as I pressed the post button I knew this reply would come and should have explained myself better..
    My thinking is that, although the angled panel WILL be better most users are not there all the time to turn it around and follow the sun, otherwise it would outperform a fixed panel..
    BUT with a fixed panel it's there ready from first thing so in the morning when your lying in bed it's already getting some power and through the day always working..

    I call this the "Tonka theory of solarbility"...

    (y)
     
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  14. camocam1

    camocam1 Read Only Funster

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    To try and answer some of the questions

    Have only 1x 110amp LB so yes could possibly fit a second BUT always belived batteries have to be same age so would need to buy 2 and yes that would help over the darker months

    Have never ran out of power yet BUT only ever had 1 night of Electric so far but would hope to get 2 maybe 3 with existing

    As has been said maybe something I fancy rather than need but hope to start getting to various rally's which are all none EHU
     
  15. tick59

    tick59 Funster

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    Got one i bought of a funster at beginning of year. Good bit of kit i do a lot of wild camping and have never run out of power. You have to keep an eye on them and keep them secure i secure mine with a couple of bike locks and bring it in at night. Do not put on roof as wind will catch it and cause damage. Just been away for five nights and used panel no problems.fun!!! fun!!! fun!!!
     
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  16. andy63

    andy63 Funster

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    have an 80w folding panel which works well in the right conditions, but as everyone has pointed out am reluctant to leave it out when im not about. can secure it to van on a length of stainless wire but that needs to be long enough to get it to both sides of van and at best only a deterrent .
    ive just put a 100w on roof for a trip to spain, and ill see how that compares, as ive noted widman's comments about the benefit of been able to angle the portable for better results, but ill feel happier about leaving the van out there :)
     
  17. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    Batteries don't have to be the same :)Your charger/use will only see one bigger battery (y)as such it makes no difference as to a 80 amp coupled to a 110 amp -the thing to watch out for is that both are in good condition (y)
    Try your set up now with just the one battery you have done one night away so try 2 then 3 -the most that will happen is you will have no telly for a night -you will not run out of lights or pump ;)and if things get desperate turn the engine on and leave it running for half hour to get you through the night :D
    If you go 3 nights then it's safe to say doubling up your batts will give you at least 5 nights without hook up (y)Do you ever go 5 nights without?
     
  18. golly

    golly Funster

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    I think member GJH used one for a while on a previous van, from memory I think he was pleased with it, you could try and send him a PM.
     
  19. Terry

    Terry Funster

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    No need for pms Golly Andy63 has one and as others have said they seem to work well --I think Camocam1 needs to establish if they need one or want one :DReading between the lines I think they will add a extra battery and a panel :LOL::LOL::LOL:Not because they need it ;):D
    terry
     
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