DIY Solar Panel Install

Discussion in 'Solar Power' started by Spinout, Apr 20, 2014.

  1. Spinout

    Spinout Read Only Funster

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    Hi
    I am planning on installing 2x 50w panels.I have got my 10a controller and I spoke to an electrician to get the heads up and he kept mentioning fuses. When looking at the kits, there seems to be no mention of fuses. I assume that it is a good idea to put a fuse from the controller to the battery and battery to inverter.

    Is this necessary and what size fuse? Also, is it good practice to connect the motorhome drive battery to the leisure battery and if so in series or parallel?

    Thanks for your input.
     
  2. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    fuses....yes......a pair
    Between battery and solar controller close to the battery and controller.....and i would use 10amp fuses.
    Putting just one near the battery will protect the battery but if the wiring is damaged it will still be live from the controller so the second fuse will protect the wiring.

    Inverter could also benefit from a fuse but the size would depend on the inverter output.

    If you mean to maintain the engine battery via solar panel when not in use then you could interconnect the two batteries, in parallel, with a length of heavy wire and a 30amp fuse but the fuse MUST be removed before starting the engine.......300amps plus to the starter motor will obviously annihilate the 30amp fuse
    There are more complicated ways using relays etc.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2014
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  3. Reallyretired

    Reallyretired Funster

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    Put a fuse between the solar panel and the controller as well. It will only need a 10A fuse with your set up.
    If you need to disconnect the batteries you must remove this fuse first, as if the solar panels are left connected to the controller without the batteries also being connected then you will fry the controller if there's any sun.
     
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  4. Wildbill

    Wildbill Funster

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    learnt that the hard way:Eeek:
     
  5. TheBig1

    TheBig1 Funster Life Member

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    sorry but if you honestly dont understand the way that electrics work, it would be safer and cheaper to leave it to a professional.
     
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  6. Wildbill

    Wildbill Funster

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    don't forget your revers polarity diode if I can do it any one can do it god loves a someone who gives it a go for it :thumb:
     
  7. Moodybrook

    Moodybrook Funster

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  8. Wildman

    Wildman Read Only Funster

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    There are so many knowledgeable funsters that occasionally people who obviously from their initial post don't have a clue what they are doing, ( and in most cases why should they it's no shame) are given advice that may or may not cause a problem if something the enlightened would do naturally is overlooked. Even 12V can cause a fire or kill if you get it wrong.
    In a case like this my advice is to get it done professionally if for no other reason than your insurance will be invalid if alterations are carried out by an unqualified person. It may cost more in the short term but will save you money in the long term, and don't forget to notify your insurance company of the changes.
     
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  9. Wildman

    Wildman Read Only Funster

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    there is an obvious flaw in this arrangement, it puts both batteries in parallel unless they are the same age, type and size you run the risk of killing both batteries.
    A poor battery will pull a good one down to the same level effectively killing both. There are B2B chargers that overcome this and only allow current to pass one way when the initial battery is fully charged.
     
  10. Spinout

    Spinout Read Only Funster

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    Thanks

    Thanks for all your replies. It looks pretty straight forward, having watched endless youtube clips. I don't now plan to connect the starter battery to the leisure as I can see that this could cause problems. Will keep a record and post later!
     
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