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Old 04-17-2014, 07:00 PM   #1
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Renogy 100W Panel -w/controller

Hi, new to popups (just got a used Jayco 1007) and plan to do quite a bit of off the grid camping therefore bought the Renogy 100W panel to keep my batter charged. Im trying it at home and Im in Phx so plent of sun and the battery gets going but then once sun drops put a voltmeter on it and its back where I started. Does the controller draw power when there isn't direct sun. The battery isn't connected to anything else. Thx in advance.
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Old 04-17-2014, 07:08 PM   #2
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Welcome to JOF

I can't answer your question, but I'm sure some of our technically gifted members will chime in shortly

Feel free to post pics of your Mod, and any other performance/installation related info.

Bob
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Old 04-17-2014, 08:33 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rludym View Post
Hi, new to popups (just got a used Jayco 1007) and plan to do quite a bit of off the grid camping therefore bought the Renogy 100W panel to keep my batter charged. Im trying it at home and Im in Phx so plent of sun and the battery gets going but then once sun drops put a voltmeter on it and its back where I started. Does the controller draw power when there isn't direct sun. The battery isn't connected to anything else. Thx in advance.
First thing to remember is that most of the time (like 99% of the time) you will not see 100watts, from the panel, unless you have it mounted on a solar tracker.

Ok, I have a few questions,
What is the size/age of the battery?
"What make/model Solar Charge Controller" do you have between the battery and the Solar Panel?
Are there voltage options that need to be set for 12VDC operation?
What is the output voltage of the solar panel?
How much wire is between the panel and battery?
What size is the wire between the solar panel and controller?

A test you can do (write the results down and keep them):
- Disconnect the solar panel and measure the panels output voltage (between noon and 1PM (should be the brightest)
- Measure any voltage coming from the charge controller (should be "0" volts)
- Reconnect the solar panel and disconnect the solar charge controller from the panel. Measure the voltage of the wire from the solar panel by the converter (wire voltage drop).
- Reconnect the converter to the solar panel, and disconnect the battery. Take a voltage reading on the output side of the charge controller?
- Before you reconnect the battery to the charge controller output, if you have a volt/amp meter set it for AMPS and see how much amperage is going to your battery from the charge controller.
+++ This will let you know if you have any wiring issues +++

- When you feel that the panel is not producing the needed output, take a voltage reading at the battery, then disconnect the battery from the solar charge controller and take a battery voltage measurement again. If the battery voltage went up without the controller connected, the controller is draining your battery.

- What is the battery voltage when the TT's charge controller is turned off after a charge? Does it keep a charge long?

You can then use these numbers down the road, should something stop working.

One final point, you want to keep the distance between the Solar charge controller and the battery as SHORT as possible and use a large diameter cable between them. I use a "0" AWG cable. The longer distance should be between the panel and charge controller as there is less voltage drop because of the higher panel voltage.

Good LUCK.. and welcome to the WORLD of SOLAR!!

Don
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Old 04-17-2014, 08:44 PM   #4
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I think I have the same renogy 100w starter kit. ( expandable to 3 panels ). It's renogy's standard starter kit.

A few notes for Mustang as he gives you some advice: The controller is a 30amp max, MPT device.

8ga wire is the largest you can terminate in the controller , both in and out.

Unless he upgraded, he only has status LEDs on the controller : solar panel voltage on, battery condition ( charging and charged )& overload.

The best voltage I saw, at 15 ft of wire, was 15.25V from the solar panel and 13.6 volts charging.

The unit is passive and does not draw power back from the battery other than battery condition/ monitoring

Pics in my profile under power
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Old 04-17-2014, 08:53 PM   #5
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If so, here are the raw specs:

Dimension: 6.14.21.8 inches
Solar System: 12V 360W (max) / 24V 720W (max)
Rated solar input: 30A
Rated load: 30A
25% current overload: 1 min.
Load disconnect: 11.1V
Load reconnect: 12.6V
Equalization voltage (30 minutes): 14.6v
Boost voltage (30 minutes): 14.4v
Float voltage: 13.6v; x2/2V
Temp Comp. (mV/C): -30mV
Temperature: -35C to +55C
No-load loss:≤5MA
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Old 04-18-2014, 08:58 AM   #6
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Hi, the sticker on the battery shows 10/12 and it is a SuperStart 24DCMJ with 87ah. The Renogy 100W kit came with a PWM30CC controller and I was getting >20V yesterday in full AZ sun. Size of wire between controller and battery is 12g and as mentioned the best I can do is to go to 8g per controller max. Could I take battery to AutoZone and see if they can just tell if its bad as I think that's where this is leading. Thankyou!
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Old 04-18-2014, 11:10 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rludym View Post
Could I take battery to AutoZone and see if they can just tell if its bad as I think that's where this is leading. Thankyou!
Do you have a normal battery charger? Put the battery on the charger for a while and take the battery voltage after it has been charging for awhile. If the battery voltage drops to the pre-charge level, I would say that there is an issue with the battery. Maybe a bad cell.
This is probably the easiest way to see if the battery holds a charge. AutoZone probably only does a load test, and if the battery has not been charged properly (not at full charge) they will recommend BUYING A NEW BATTERY.
Just a thought
Don
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EnGenius WI-FI extender, D-Link wireless (n) modem
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Old 04-18-2014, 01:01 PM   #8
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I don't have a normal charger but do have the converter in the jayco that I could use to charge it. I hooked up solar unit again this morning (happens to be cloudy in Phx which never happens!) Initial reading was 7.05V, just took again 4 hours later and battery at 8.2V. We'll see what end of day brings and then do you recommend I disconnect battery all together and just test in the morning and if it is back to the 7's I prob have bad battery?
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Old 04-18-2014, 01:37 PM   #9
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Is your battery voltage 7 volts or the solar panel output voltage 7 volts?
Hook the battery up the the TT's charge controller and see what happens.
Don
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2013 Jayco Eagle 284BHS
250Watt Grape Solar Panel, MorningStar MPPT 60 Charge Controller
1500 Watt Ramsond PSI, 2 Trojan T145 Batteries (260Ah)
2 - AirSight Wireless IP Cameras (used as rear view cameras)
EnGenius WI-FI extender, D-Link wireless (n) modem
MagicJack Internet Phone
2012 Ford F150XLT, EcoBoost w/3.73
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Our Solar Album https://www.jaycoowners.com/album.php?albumid=329
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Old 04-18-2014, 05:57 PM   #10
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battery 7Volts...hooked up to TT charge controller now....
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