Had solar panel rewired and now the alarm faults!

Discussion in 'Tech/Mech General' started by Bolero, Aug 3, 2016.

  1. Bolero

    Bolero Read Only Funster

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    Hi,
    For the last 4 years I have had the 100 watt solar panel on my 2012 Bolero wired directly, via a EPIP 20 regulator to two 100 AH leisure batteries and everything has been fine.
    I decided I wanted to include the vehicle battery so had a Workshop Approved man refit it to the Sargent PSU but when the solar is charging the vehicle battery, the sun is shining and the alarm is set it goes off. I have looked at the regulator and the Sargent display when this happens and the readings are in the 14 range with an occasional 15. I have concluded the alarm is wired to the vehicle battery and not through the PSU.
    I have spoken to the Alarm supplier, Sargent and the Workshop Approved guy and none can provide an answer, so as I have seen some well informed technical answers on this forum I was hoping someone can give me some pointers.
    Thanks in anticipation.
     
  2. MikeD

    MikeD Funster

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    Bump
     
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  3. NickNic

    NickNic Funster Life Member

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    Yes the alarm will be wired to the vehicle battery. It wouldn't be wired through the fan PSU because if you switched it off you would isolate the alarm.

    I guess it depends on the alarm system but when it's set it could be monitoring the battery voltage and interpreting anything outside of a set range as an attack.

    Probably not what you want to hear but the easiest solution if that's the case would be to return the solar wiring to the way it was before, via a regulator straight to the leisure batteries and fit a Battery Master to take care of the engine battery.
     
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  4. Derbyshire wanderer

    Derbyshire wanderer Funster Life Member

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    I think @NickNic is right as the alarm will look for battery voltage to show when an interior comes on due to a door being opened.
    On the Sargent unit you can set the solar charging to Smart, Leisure or Vehicle. Set it to Leisure and see if the fault is resolved. If so, you either need to only charge the Leisure batteries or alter the alarm to not sense the interior lighting circuit.
     
  5. Jaws

    Jaws Funster Life Member

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    If all else fails get someone to make up a 12v regulator and put it in the feed to the alarm
    A 7012 3 legged chip, a couple 1000pf capacitors to get rid of any wee spikes, job done.

    Not an ideal solution but it IS a solution
     
  6. Bolero

    Bolero Read Only Funster

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    Thanks for the prompt replies.
    Nicknic - The reason I mention the alarm is wired directly to the battery is because there is also a connection for an alarm in the Swift wiring loom. The alarm supplier advised the alarm would sound if the voltage dropped below 10v as it would think the supply had been disconnected, but a higher voltage would not effect it. The sounder has it's own battery. I decided to wire the solar through the PSU as the manufacturer had provided a connection.
    Derbyshire Wanderer - I have found that when charging the leisure batteries the alarm is not effected.
    Jaws - I am puzzled why I have a problem as most Swift and Autotrail motorhomes since 2012 have the solar connection option and I have not seen any complaints. I have no problem when on EHU and the batteries are charging through the PSU. Isn't the existing regulator supposed to restrict the voltage? Is it possible to buy a ready made device to iron out the spikes - Maplins etc?
    Thanks to all those who responded and I would welcome any other ideas.
    PS. I had a motorbike rack with lights fitted and the supplier tapped into the wiring in the driver's step area. As the exterior lights are not on when the alarm is set could this have any effect? I am grasping at straws for a solution.
     
  7. Derbyshire wanderer

    Derbyshire wanderer Funster Life Member

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    As the problem is only there when charging the vehicle battery, your alarm supplier is probably mistaken that only a lower voltage will set it off. The alarm is fairly dumb in that it is only looking for a reference voltage when you set it. Deviations of voltage are designed to set it off.
    I would email the manufacturer of the alarm to clarify.
     
  8. aandncaravan

    aandncaravan Funster

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    There is a device for Motorhomes, a Schaudt SR1203 :
    The voltage regulator SR 1203 has been designed
    for use in recreational vehicles. It has a stabilized 12 V output
    voltage for sensitive electronic equipment
    requiring exactly 12V regardless of the input voltage.

    However, if your other charging systems don't set the alarm off, I am not sure how Solar does.
    Unless the output is going 'over voltage', like 16v+ occasionally?
    Some solar regulators can be slow at regulating a surge, like when the Sun suddenly comes out from behind a cloud, and are 'lazy' in regulating the Solar Panels sudden burst of 21v under control?

    If that is the case there will be other 12v equipment at risk, so just protecting the Alarm possibly isn't the best option?
     
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