Solar Panels

Discussion in 'The Beginner' started by Hakimo, Apr 9, 2012.

  1. Hakimo

    Hakimo Funster

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    Hi - I've been reading about these flexible solar panels mounted on the roof. Does anyone have any experience of them ? - good or bad.
     
  2. ShiftZZ

    ShiftZZ Funster Life Member

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    Good question, I will be following this thread..
     
  3. slobadoberbob

    slobadoberbob Read Only Funster

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    there has been many a debate on this forum

    There has been many a debate on the forum over the past few years.. it may be worth looking back and seeing what various people have had to say.

    I have no axe to grind as I do not use them... I have a 4wk generator built in my chassis linked to a Sterling pure-wave combo charger linked to my two 100 amps (200 total) batteries. Otherwise I use EHU on sites.


    Bob:RollEyes:
     
  4. hdvrod

    hdvrod Read Only Funster

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    Me too!
     
  5. tonka

    tonka Funster Life Member

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    No.. But I cant see any reason to pay more for a flexible one unless you just dont have the roof space and need to use the curved overhead area.. The flexible ones are more suited to boats etc where people can still walk about..

    Out of interest, just looked up my regular supplier for a friend and prices seem to be down again.. 80w for £108 inc delivery..
    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/PV-80-Wat...30675170537?pt=UK_Gadgets&hash=item1e6cd8dce9
     
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  6. mikkidee

    mikkidee Read Only Funster

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    Hi Hakimo and welcome to the Fun, I don't know about flexible panels, we had 2 80watt solar panels fitted last year. They are the best thing we have had fitted so far. They even charge on a dull day. Hopefully someone will be along soon to answer you question.
    Mike:Smile:
     
  7. slobadoberbob

    slobadoberbob Read Only Funster

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    well thats not going to run my toaster is it

    80 watts will not run my toaster will it:Sad::Sad::Sad::Sad::Sad:


    Bob
     
  8. ShiftZZ

    ShiftZZ Funster Life Member

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    So the answer is no?
     
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  9. slobadoberbob

    slobadoberbob Read Only Funster

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    I did look at them recently

    Yes it is NO but I did look at them when I was thinking about a wind power un it.. I also looked at these flexible solar panels... but as said designed for boats and can be walked on... as my roof has a lot of kit on it from the winguard arial, fridge vent, air con box, satellite dome, roof light, and a bubble over the shower area plus other vents, I have a fairly small area.. and 80 watts is just not big enough to make any differance to the amount of power I use. The shadow issue is still a problem, especially for me.

    But I like to see my 200 words work still rather than just NO:Rofl1::Rofl1::Rofl1::Rofl1::Rofl1::Rofl1:


    Bob:Blush:
     
  10. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    hi bob .you could get a decent van one with a gas grill. dont use any leccy then.
    simplicity works every time.
    as to the flexible solars . the real question is why .
    most arent even worth the effort of un rolling . unless space is verty limited as said £io8 including delivery and the same compny can do very good regulators to match.
    i imagine op. was talking about therapy 2000 in stoke prior. excellent service from them.
     
  11. Gromett

    Gromett Funster

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    I am toying with the idea of getting some of these for the side of the van. I had a small one once but never got round to fitting it.
    They are really thin and would fit within the side panels of the van. This would just be to give me an extra early morning late afternoon to complement the ones on the roof.

    Just a thought at the moment, I have loads of other stuff to spend money on before I get to that...
     
  12. slobadoberbob

    slobadoberbob Read Only Funster

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    we use a cobb for cooking mostly

    We mainly use the cobb unit for cooking and we have a colman unleaded fuel double stove in reserve.. as the RV is LPG cooker and also fridge.. we only use the batteries to power the TV via the inverter (230v).

    Bob
     
  13. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    Interesting to see Bob's comment "80 watts is just not big enough to make any difference to the amount of power I use" because that sums up the crux of the matter.

    Using power hungry devices (even conventional bulbs) carries with it a requirement to have a means of generating significant power.

    I've changed all our internal lights to LED and apart from that we have the water pump and blown air heating pump (which take relatively little power) plus charging of laptops, phones &c and, every now and again a low wattage 12v TV for a short while.

    We have a single 80Ah battery but because we use such a small amount of power it is more than adequate. The 80W panel we had fitted to the roof more than copes with replacing the power we use each day. It was putting in a small charge even in the rain at Chester this morning.
     
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  14. mick noe

    mick noe Funster

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    when off hook up, our solar panel charges battery enough for lights an a couple of hours tele, no problem.Never flattened battery yet and are not over carefull even in the uk.
     
  15. haganap

    haganap Funster Life Member

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    Just a thought Gromett, Would it be legal to add them to the side of your van? With the reflection whilst driving could you not dazzle others and possibly cause an accident?

    Not sure as I have not seen the flexible ones,
     
  16. Gromett

    Gromett Funster

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    It's on the side of the van...
    It's in the same place windows would be.
    It's slightly angled up.
    They are not as reflective as rigid panels as they don't have a glass front to them.

    Hmm? I think that covers it:thumb:
     
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  17. sabconsulting

    sabconsulting Read Only Funster

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    I have the regular panels, so I can't offer any advice about the flexible ones based upon experience.

    However, one thing to consider is that there is no air gap between the flexible panels and your roof as there often is with regular panels, so in a hot climate they could absorb a lot of heat and transmit it to the roof of your motorhome (a bit like painting your motorhome roof black). Also, as the panels get hot their efficiency reduces.

    Not a major concern, but something to throw into the mix when considering buying them.

    Steve.
     
  18. Gromett

    Gromett Funster

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    You are correct the heat could be transferred to the van roof. However if I was to install one I would use a thin layer of Sikaflex which would insulate it.
    If it did conduct to the roof this would keep the solar panel cooler and more efficient though :thumb:
     
  19. oldun

    oldun Read Only Funster

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    With an 80W=watts solar panel will be lucky to get 50 watts even on a good day in the UK (50+ degrees north).

    50 watts at 240 volts is about 0.25 amps not much use for mains power, ideal for keeping a battery topped up for lighting and powering the pump and 12V side of a gas heater.
     
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