New to solar, I purchased the 100 watt package. Planning on installing on my boat to charge the batteries. I have a Blue Sea Add-A Battery switch and ACR connected to 2 batteries, one starting and one house. Main engine and Kicker motor are both connected to the Start Battery. House battery powers fish finder, lighting, and accessories. Currently with either engine running, the alternator charges the batteries. Switch configuration can combine batteries for emergency. Question, should I install a switch to disconnect the solar panel when engines are running? If so where, between the CC and batteries or between the solar and the CC or both? Also should fuses or breakers be installed between solar, CC and Batteries?
For one panel this is no need to fuse panel to controller. Fuse controller to battery based on wire size or controller amp rating which ever is less.
Most controller manuals warn of connection/disconnect order. This is more an issue with MPPT controller vs PWM controller. Controller is connected to batt first and then the panels are added, disconnect the panels and then disconnect the battery. Just be aware that the switch may momentarily disconnect going from 1 to 2 to both!
Not sure what an ACR is, is it some sort of battery isolator?
I would likely hook the controller to the same spot the alternator connects to the batts.
Thanks for the input, The ACR is a Automatic Charge relay it combines batteries during charging, and Isolates them during discharge or when starting. It charges which ever battery is the lowest. Now for another question during storage, when I am not using the boat, I need to disconnect the solar panel. Renogy recommends ( during installation connect battery to controller first, then connect panel to controller) disconnect in reverse. Panel from controller then battery. So to commission the system and decommission do I need switchs on each side of the controller??? If so, do these need to be double pole, or could I leave the negative side unswitched. Renogy also says to fuse the connection from controller to battery at 30 Amp.
the purpose of the controller is to prevent overcharge. Keeping a voltage of 13.2 or whatever 24/7 is the best way to store batteries, solar tries to do this. Another method of storage is let the batts self discharge to 12.5 and then fully recharge, this could be monthly or every few months depending on the temperature.
I'd suggest you leave the system connected and let some sun shine on the panel during storage. Each day (most sunny days!) in storage the controller will let the battery get to 14.4v or whatever spec is for some period of time and then revert to float of 13.? keeping the batteries ready to go. The controller adjust these set pts based on temperature.
Set the controller to the type of battery (flooded, gel, Sealed/AGM) and let it do its thing. If flooded check the fluid level from time to time.
ya don't need a fuse on the panel side with just 1 or two panels, the controller/battery side should be fused 30A (30A controller) or less. 10 gauge wire calls for max of 30A fuse.
The controller gets its power from the battery, hook it up first so it can boot and determine you have a 12v system, it is ok to disconnect one wire if you do need to disconnect.
Trophy, so we can eliminate a sail, but do you have or use radar? If so, you may still have a shadow problem. If your panels are above any shadow casting, your good with either series or parallel. But if a short mast or radar unit casts a shadow on even one panel even a small portion of one panel in a series configuration then you just lost your charging mode. But if your in a parallel configuration then even if one panel gets a small amount of shadow you still have the other that will continual the charging process. So if your using just one panel, then just watch the sun and try to keep it clear of shade as much as you can anyway. Your other questions have already been answered.
Last Edit: Mar 21, 2018 15:45:33 GMT -8 by spiderbob