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Author Topic: Harbor Freight Solar system  (Read 2565 times)

SteveRocket

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  • Posts: 68
  • Orange County California via London England UK
Harbor Freight Solar system
« on: February 06, 2011, 07:03:43 PM »
I am Steve from California via London in the UK.  I have just bought a 1983 Suncrest RV based on a Ford Econoline 350 with a 460 gas engine.  I wish to add a solar charger to charge the House battery and I also wish to add another house battery.    Harbor Freight sell a 45 watt solar panel set I wondered if this would be a worthwhile thing to buy as I would  Like to keep the batteries charged as much as I can so I can run the lower power drawing appliances via inverter not generator.  I also have some questions about wiring the additional battery so that it receives a chard from the alternator and the generator plus the solar set
I look forward to your answers  and thank you in advance

Steve
83 Suncrest RV 27ft long, On a Ford E350 Chassis and 440 Petrol Engine.A Triumph Bonneville and A Kawasaki Police 1000 with a sidecar.

BayareaBill

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  • Posts: 45
Re: Harbor Freight Solar system
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2011, 07:15:00 PM »
  Steve
  been there done that.Use the search function  with BayareaBill and  solar panels, and you should see my posts on my install.after you check that if you have specific questions about my install I would be happy to go into more detail with you,
  ps.  don't pay more then 170 for the panels,they go on sale alot on their website.and I got  a set for 150 last July.

SteveRocket

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  • Posts: 68
  • Orange County California via London England UK
Re: Harbor Freight Solar system
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2011, 07:20:11 PM »
thanks   I will do a search   Appreciate the advice
83 Suncrest RV 27ft long, On a Ford E350 Chassis and 440 Petrol Engine.A Triumph Bonneville and A Kawasaki Police 1000 with a sidecar.

SteveRocket

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  • Posts: 68
  • Orange County California via London England UK
Re: Harbor Freight Solar system
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2011, 07:57:47 PM »
Hi Bill  yes I do have a few questions Did you install them flat  ? I presume you did and they are not movable.  Did you bolt them straight onto the roof ?.  I am a little worried if I drill holes in the roof I will cause leeks
thanks again
83 Suncrest RV 27ft long, On a Ford E350 Chassis and 440 Petrol Engine.A Triumph Bonneville and A Kawasaki Police 1000 with a sidecar.

BayareaBill

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  • Posts: 45
Re: Harbor Freight Solar system
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2011, 10:02:39 PM »
  Steve
  Flat is a compremise  to keep the installation as simple as possible,but with some creative engineering I am sure one could set it up for slope and rotation  to face sun.I used 1/2 inch wood screws and a dab of sealer in small pilot hole and also around aluminum bracket.No issues after 2000 mile road trip and the rains in December  in California.
  Big difference between my setup and the one you perpose is my battery's are isolated from alternator and converter battery's(true house)so I would research the issue of potently sending  juice into house battery's from 2 sources at the same time.ie.solar and alternator will driving,although the charge controller I am using can be shut off to not let juice get to battery's so you could turn off while driving or on shore power.
  Did you see the post on my cost breakdown and list of materials??                   Bill

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Harbor Freight Solar system
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2011, 10:27:29 AM »
The extra battery is easy - just wire it in parallel with the existing house battery (not chassis) and it will use and charge just like the original. If possible, locate the battery immediately adjacent to the other and use quality battery cables (at least 4 gauge) to connect.

A 45 watt solar panel will give you about 3 amps/hour of charging during peak sunlight. Most solar panels only deliver the rated output when the sun is directly overhead with absolutely no shade, not even a tiny shadow, so the average daily output is much less. It's not a lot of power, but on a bright day is can help top the batteries up.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

 

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