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AuthorMessage
Timmyblue
Timmyblue

Posted: Mon Aug 20, 2018 8:07am

Post Subject: Solar panels

Wanting to fit solar panels, done some research but need to hear of boaters actual experiences of installation, use and efficiency.

Tony-B
Tony-B

Posted: Mon Aug 20, 2018 9:29am

Post Subject: Solar panels

Expect a maximum of 50% of rated output at noon in high summer for horizontal panels dropping to far less at either end of the day and as good as zero during the winter months. Modest amounts of 40 watts plus are very good at recharging the batteries when you go home and leave the boat but only may a marginal contribution to keeping the batteries charged when out cruising. To make any significant contribution to daily charging you probably need at least 250 watts but the more you fit the better. If you do not have an electric fridge a bit less may do. However much you fit do not expect a significant amount of charge during (say) late October to late March. If you mooring suffers partial shading the wiring the panels in parallel will probably maximise their output but if not putting them is series will get you a LITTLE more charge in poor condition but do not allow the voltage to exceed the rating of the controller. The hardest part of fitting them I found was running the cables, however am happy with drilling and tapping the roof. Some people stick their panels down ,even the rigid ones by using plastic mounts and a suitable adhesive. . Golden rule is: ALWAYS CONNECT THE BATTERIES FIRST. Otherwise with just the panels connected to the controller the controller may decide it is on a 24 volt system and that will do 12V batteries no good at all. Come back if you need more info.

Timmyblue
Timmyblue

Posted: Mon Aug 20, 2018 7:16pm

Post Subject: Solar panels

Tony, thatâs extremely useful, thank you.

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