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Author Topic: BLM camping at Q with Solar  (Read 286 times)

john owens

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BLM camping at Q with Solar
« on: November 12, 2017, 07:57:52 PM »
Okay we put our new solar equipment to good use and have a question or two. Equipment includes 4 100 W panels on the roof. Flat position. Wish Kevin had perfected his auto tilt setup. lol. % type 31 AGM Batterys. Just hooked up the Morningstar TS controller...love it. Okay we had a few semi cloudy days and a couple of clear blue sys with full Sun. The inverter (MAGNA 2000 W)on most days read 12.4 or some days 12.8 volts to work with. Tv's and radio no problem all day long. When the DW used her toaster oven or our 90 amp coffee maker the voltage would go down to 12.2, sometimes 12.1 After device was turned off the working voltage would be 12.4 and go higher when sun was full. Is my system acting normal?? Or what if I added 2 more 100 W panels?? Thanks Guys!!!
2011 Winnebago 37F Class A  2012 Unlimited JK 2001 HD roadking  1964 Manx 1641cc buggy 1985 22'Lazy Daze Class C 2007 Chaparrel 26' deck boat..Thats all folks!!

QZ

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Re: BLM camping at Q with Solar
« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2017, 08:43:33 PM »
Do you have 5 group 31? If your batteries are being fully charged you should hit float voltage. If you do have have 5 agm 31's I can see where you could do a fair amount of inverting but putting it back in with 400 watts may not work. Under load they could well dip that low with heavy inverting. What brand of batteries?
« Last Edit: November 12, 2017, 08:45:46 PM by QZ »

john owens

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Re: BLM camping at Q with Solar
« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2017, 08:46:57 PM »
Yes I have 5 type 31's. They are Exide I believe..
2011 Winnebago 37F Class A  2012 Unlimited JK 2001 HD roadking  1964 Manx 1641cc buggy 1985 22'Lazy Daze Class C 2007 Chaparrel 26' deck boat..Thats all folks!!

QZ

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Re: BLM camping at Q with Solar
« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2017, 08:54:45 PM »
That's good. I dont run agm but I'd say you want to see the solar voltage hit float when the amps drop low enough. When it is at float you should be able to disconnect all loads and let it rest a couple hours or load it lightly to get rid of the surface charge and then see it hold 12.6.  How many amps is the TS?
How did you wire it? What gauge?
I know what you mean about overcast today.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2017, 09:02:46 PM by QZ »

john owens

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Re: BLM camping at Q with Solar
« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2017, 09:30:58 PM »
45 amps on the TS. The cable is like welding lead..Discount Solar did the original wireing job. Huge cable going into the inverter. So adding 2 more 100w panels is a good idea for my setup? I'm not going to add anymore batterys. Thanks for any and all comments!!
2011 Winnebago 37F Class A  2012 Unlimited JK 2001 HD roadking  1964 Manx 1641cc buggy 1985 22'Lazy Daze Class C 2007 Chaparrel 26' deck boat..Thats all folks!!

HueyPilotVN

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Re: BLM camping at Q with Solar
« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2017, 09:39:05 PM »
I would agree that adding more panels can't hurt and would especially help during a cloudy day like it was around here today.
Bill Waugh
40' Country Coach DP
34' Stacker Trailer, Trailer Toad
Jeep Commander
Mustang Bracket Race Car
35 years on the road

QZ

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Re: BLM camping at Q with Solar
« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2017, 10:06:53 PM »
Look up the specs for your controller as far as how many panels it will carry. No one can say that adding 200 watts will be correct for you. It all depends on how much energy you are using.  If you were running a wet cell battery and your voltages didn't seem to come up you will see a drop in the Specific Gravity. If using agm and not using an amp counter how do you know when your batteries are charged? You  need to see your converter or solar control go into float.  If 12.8 is the highest you have ever seen you are surely not completely charging batts. You should be seeing 14.4 or so and then 13.2 or 13.3 etc for float.

Adding panels obviously wont hurt but it's no guarantee that your battery will be charged. To be fully charged each day you should be seeing 13.x in float and then taper down as the sun sets.  If your battery bank is large enough you should be seeing 12.2 min or 12.3 in the am. Run on generator first thing in the am and get the system to hit float. If your battery is not being charged you can cut use or add panels but right now there is no saying how much you need.

I was running four GC2 420 AH along with a 30 amp PWM controller and 520 watts of panel. We didn't invert to heavy loads but always used our house furnace, 42" led tv, led lights, computers etc. I would often be down 70 or more AH and completely charge with tilted panels.  Tilted panels help a lot in the winter down here. One rule of thumb is 100 to 150 watts per 100 ah of battery but again that doesn't guarantee charged batteries.  I would think that Craig has your controller set correctly.

QZ

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Re: BLM camping at Q with Solar
« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2017, 10:16:55 PM »
The batteries are your bank account. If they can carry you until you can charge they are large enough.
Your usage in amp hours are your withdrawals.
Your deposits into your account are any of the charging sources .
You also have to make up for battery internal resistance and system losses. You cant use 1 ah and only give 1 ah back, you have a penalty to pay.
A handy device that  you may like having is a battery monitor such as Trimetric or Victron or others.

john owens

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Re: BLM camping at Q with Solar
« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2017, 10:21:15 PM »
Oh I forgot to list the Magna remote mounted inside the Winnebago in the area where all the other controls go. When shore power OR genset is running I try and study the remote monitor. It has bulk charged in the 14 range. I keep an eye on the monitor so I know when to turn things off or fire up the Onan. These batterys are kinda pricey so I certainly will keep an eye on charge rates.
2011 Winnebago 37F Class A  2012 Unlimited JK 2001 HD roadking  1964 Manx 1641cc buggy 1985 22'Lazy Daze Class C 2007 Chaparrel 26' deck boat..Thats all folks!!

QZ

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Re: BLM camping at Q with Solar
« Reply #9 on: November 12, 2017, 10:38:54 PM »
Oh I forgot to list the Magna remote mounted inside the Winnebago in the area where all the other controls go. When shore power OR genset is running I try and study the remote monitor. It has bulk charged in the 14 range. I keep an eye on the monitor so I know when to turn things off or fire up the Onan. These batterys are kinda pricey so I certainly will keep an eye on charge rates.
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Yep, more batteries die young from under charging vs over charging.  agm like higher amps than wet. I'm hitting 600 ah of wets with 75 amps.
Another factor is the Peukert effect when inverting.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2017, 10:48:38 PM by QZ »

 

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