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Old 10-17-2014, 02:47 PM   #11
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Location: Clearwater, FL area
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Mounting Solar panels on roof

Putting holes in any roof is a big decision maker, but if done correctly everything will be OK.

Here is what I did to mount my solar panel on our Eagle 284BHS. I called a RV place in CA that sets up RV's for solar and inquired about mounting the panel(s) on the roof of my Eagle. They said that it is not necessary to locate the the trusses in the roof as the roof decking is 3/8" thick (on my Eagle), and the trusses would not line up with the panel anyway. I used 8 solar panel mounting brackets (Z Brackets). I situated the panel on the roof where it was going to be mounted, marked the new mounting holes in the panel frame for the brackets. I then mounted the brackets on the panel and marked where I needed to pre-drill the holes in the roof. After pre-drilling the holes in the roof, I cut a couple pieces of white water hose and sliced them length wise, and placed them between the solar panel and the peak of the roof, so that the metal would not cut into the roof. I then filled all the holes in the roof with the roof sealant (Dicor) and spread it over the area where the brackets would sit on the roof. I then mounted the panel with #14 x 1 1/4 screws, which are more that enough to do the job. I poured roofing sealant over the brackets and screws. I used white wire channels under the awning to get the wires from the back of the roof to the front storage section. They have a sticky side and look/work great.
I did this project about 18 months ago and traveled over 8K miles (Colorado..... GA, IL and back) with no issues at all. We encountered cross winds (at Wilson Lake) of over 40 mph in KS for 3 days with no issues. I kept checking the brackets and wire each time we get to a CC. I attached a link to my album that shows the solar panel mounted on the roof.

I will be adding panel # 2 (and possibly #3 as we are looking at more dry-camping) at the end of the year and 2 more T145 batteries to increase my Ah to 520Ah. I have yet to turn on my TT's battery charge controller since I installed my 250 watt panel.....

What type of battery setup do you have on the trailer?
Any questions just yell!!!

Good luck, hope this helps
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
157" Wheel base, HD Towing Package

Our Solar Album https://www.jaycoowners.com/album.php?albumid=329
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Old 10-18-2014, 09:04 AM   #12
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Location: Saskatoon Sask Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lightcs1776 View Post
I am new to the idea of solar for a camper, but would like to use something, in addition to a generator, to trickle charge the battery. Do all solar panels require permanent attachment to the roof?
NO but you have to watch that they dont grow legs and walk away or get blown over in the wind. My first 3 (non attached) panels were totaled off in a sudden wind storm.
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2004 Chev Silverado Duramax optioned past the max. 2009 Jayco Eagle 308 RLS 765 watts of solar, 6-6 volt batteries (696 amp hour), 2000 watt (4000 surge) whole house inverter.
175 days boondocking in 2017
215/2016, 211/2015, 196/14, 247/13, 193/12

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Old 10-18-2014, 09:34 AM   #13
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Location: Tupper Lake
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Since all my camping is boon docking and never having hookups my solar panel was the best investment I ever made. I permanently attached it to my roof and ran the wires down the refrigerator stack. There I tapped into a 12v line and now have unlimited battery life.
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Old 10-18-2014, 01:25 PM   #14
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When you wire your system in, put your Solar Charge Controller as close to the batteries as possible. This will give you the least amount of voltage drop and get a little more amperage to the batteries. The longest wire run should be between the panels and the solar charge controller.
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
157" Wheel base, HD Towing Package

Our Solar Album https://www.jaycoowners.com/album.php?albumid=329
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