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Old 02-22-2018, 05:19 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Placement of solar panels!?

Hi all,

Trying to decide on the placement of my solar panels. My batteries will be located on the front right side in an outside compartment underneath the bus, and beneath the passenger seat.

I understand that you really want the shortest distance possible between the panels, charge controller and batteries to minimise resistance.

As such, should i put my panels on the front of my bus so they're closer to the batteries?

We'd rather but our roof fan at the front, but I am worried that the extra feet of wire required if we were to put the panels at the back would allow more resistance than we prefer...

Would it make much difference?



Thanks in advance - this forum has been an amazing community to learn from
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Old 02-22-2018, 05:39 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremyc View Post
Hi all,

Trying to decide on the placement of my solar panels. My batteries will be located on the front right side in an outside compartment underneath the bus, and beneath the passenger seat.

I understand that you really want the shortest distance possible between the panels, charge controller and batteries to minimise resistance.

As such, should i put my panels on the front of my bus so they're closer to the batteries?

We'd rather but our roof fan at the front, but I am worried that the extra feet of wire required if we were to put the panels at the back would allow more resistance than we prefer...

Would it make much difference?



Thanks in advance - this forum has been an amazing community to learn from
How about fan b/t the panels and the main drop close to the controller?

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Old 02-22-2018, 06:08 PM   #3
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It all depends on what the output voltage is of the panel you use.
The panel voltage is dependent on the number of solar cells on the panel.

To make an electrical cable electrically shorter you use thicker wire.
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Old 02-22-2018, 06:57 PM   #4
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The fan in-between the panels might be a solution... We will be stealth moding a bit so i wonder if that might give us away?

We will be using 12v power from the panels. What size wires should I use to the controllern toi minimise resistance?
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Old 02-22-2018, 07:32 PM   #5
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I just measured the size of the panels and I can fit with 3 side-by-side on the roof with the 4th going horizontal across the bottom.

Alternatively I could do them horizontally on the roof and just do all 4 next to each other.

So i think i will position them at the front and that will give me the shortest cable distance.

Then the question is... Do you think it matters if the panels are close to the edges of the roof.... Do you think this is `too close`as they will be 153 total width and the roof is 170 total width

will it give away out stealth mode or will they be visible anyway haha
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Old 02-22-2018, 07:40 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremyc View Post
The fan in-between the panels might be a solution... We will be stealth moding a bit so i wonder if that might give us away?

We will be using 12v power from the panels. What size wires should I use to the controllern toi minimise resistance?
It's about amperage...which is wattage divided by voltage...try your app store for "wire sizing calculator" or "wire gauge calculator"...that should help...I tend to do badly trying to write stuff...hopefully you can find a good calculator

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Old 02-22-2018, 07:40 PM   #7
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I mounted mine on the right (passenger) side of the bus. My thought is that before parking/camping, I would face the front of the bus East. This would get the panels at a pretty ideal location to get the most sun and also allows morning sunrise to start warming up the bus through the large windshield.
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Old 02-22-2018, 08:04 PM   #8
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I mounted mine on the right (passenger) side of the bus. My thought is that before parking/camping, I would face the front of the bus East. This would get the panels at a pretty ideal location to get the most sun and also allows morning sunrise to start warming up the bus through the large windshield.
That's rather clever in regards to the windshield

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Old 02-23-2018, 08:34 AM   #9
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Distance between panels, controller and batteries does matter, it matters most if your entire system is 12v, if you can get 24 or 48v panels the distance matters less especially since we are only talking about an extra 10 to 15ft of wire length. If you already have 12v panels then you can hook them up in pairs so it is a 24v system,
What is the number and type of panels that you have, what controller do you have?
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Old 02-23-2018, 01:13 PM   #10
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Distance between panels, controller and batteries does matter, it matters most if your entire system is 12v, if you can get 24 or 48v panels the distance matters less especially since we are only talking about an extra 10 to 15ft of wire length. If you already have 12v panels then you can hook them up in pairs so it is a 24v system,
What is the number and type of panels that you have, what controller do you have?
I have these panels and bought 2 sets - so 400W total:

https://www.amazon.ca/Renogy-Monocry...2GBN39555GQEC0

I have this controller:

https://www.amazon.ca/Morningstar-TS...pwm+controller

What is the benefit of hooking them up so they are 24v? I actually only have two 235 amp batteries that are 6v and was going to hook them up in series to make 12v so if feel 24v will not be possible
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