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Old 03-03-2019, 01:25 PM   #1
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Extra solar port 140 watts

I have a portable 180 watts amp solar panel. My new 2019 view manual states that the port should not be used for an amount greater than 140 watts. Any suggestions? I hate to not use it.

Thanks.
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Old 03-03-2019, 03:12 PM   #2
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Your View may have 10 ga wiring so the limit is made 140/12= 12 amp max 180/12= 15 amps. No panel is 100% efficient. Try it, but check the output current. If it is too high, cover some of the front with tape.
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Old 03-03-2019, 03:38 PM   #3
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Thanks Tuscontoy

Hey thanks Tuscontoy. That makes it easy! Yay☺️
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Old 03-03-2019, 03:38 PM   #4
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The installation manual for my Renogy Rover charge controller says that 10 GA NEC max current is 40 amps, and NEC says should be fused for 30 amps.


OTOH, does your View already have a solar charge controller? If so, that is probably the limiter there.
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Old 03-03-2019, 04:02 PM   #5
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I suspect proper electrical safety requires the extra solar port be fused. If so, you need find out if that fuse will blow with current from an additional 40W over spec.

I base my statement on the fact that Winnebago issued a safety recall on the wiring of the earlier models of the Winnebago Fuse extra solar panel port. It apparently lacked a fuse in the circuit going to the charge controller and their recall was to have one added.
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Old 03-03-2019, 04:04 PM   #6
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Hi,

Our View has a 30 amp controller and says can handle the wattage. I could add a panel to the roof but I want some portable solar in case of shade, etc. Apparently it’s the side port that is limiting it.

Mar
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Old 03-03-2019, 04:34 PM   #7
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This has little to do with the controller. I am saying that apparently Winnebago feels that pair of wires going from your extra solar port on the side to the charge controller should be fused....and if in fact it is fused, your 180W panel might blow it if the fuse did not have much margin over the 140W spec.
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Old 03-03-2019, 04:53 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tucsontoy View Post
Your View may have 10 ga wiring so the limit is made 140/12= 12 amp max 180/12= 15 amps. No panel is 100% efficient. Try it, but check the output current. If it is too high, cover some of the front with tape.
I'm with Tucsontoy on this one. It's not just the panel's efficiency, it's also the amount of sun it's getting so you're unlikely to draw the full wattage. If you want to tape over some cells just to be safe you can just cover as close as you can get to 22% of the cells of the 180w panel (1-140/180 = .222).
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Old 03-06-2019, 10:41 AM   #9
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Many or most solar panels loose 95% of their output just by covering just one of the solar chips (the 5" or 6" squares). So covering 20% of the panel could cause loss of most all output.
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Old 03-06-2019, 11:36 AM   #10
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Thanks al1florida

Thanks al1 florida
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Old 03-06-2019, 12:01 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by al1florida View Post
Many or most solar panels loose 95% of their output just by covering just one of the solar chips (the 5" or 6" squares). So covering 20% of the panel could cause loss of most all output.
Interesting, can you elaborate? I just assumed it was proportional.
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Old 03-06-2019, 02:42 PM   #12
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Bob, this is so. And it's a critical factor in how you wire them up. If you wire groups of panels together it's possible to seriously degrade the output of an entire string if they are wired in series.

The Wynns used to be RV YouTubers and are now sailing YouTubers. Here's a video from their sailing videos that perfectly illustrates this.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...&v=1qD3mN8VotQ
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Old 03-06-2019, 03:12 PM   #13
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Bob, this is so. And it's a critical factor in how you wire them up. If you wire groups of panels together it's possible to seriously degrade the output of an entire string if they are wired in series.

The Wynns used to be RV YouTubers and are now sailing YouTubers. Here's a video from their sailing videos that perfectly illustrates this.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...&v=1qD3mN8VotQ
Thanks, I'll check it out.
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Old 03-06-2019, 03:38 PM   #14
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Here is another example. Also something people with tilting panels with the panels wired in series may not think about.

The video below shows a couple tilting their 6 series wired panels to show how much more power they get with the panels tilted. However if you watch them put up the first 5 panels, they get little or no increase in output from the panels. When they finally tilt the last panel the power output jumps from 38amps to 51amps.

You can start watching at about minute 2:20 and see the amps increase about 1 amp per panel until the last panel is tilted, then it jumps about 13 amps.

Basically the last panel is in kind of in a minor shadow because the sun is hitting the panel at an angle rather than perpendicular to the panel.

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Old 03-06-2019, 03:39 PM   #15
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The panels in the video are old technology in the solar world. The type of crystal structure and how the individual cells are connected within the panels is changing. The older style became useless after a hail storm. Time to read up on the latest technology.
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Old 03-06-2019, 03:45 PM   #16
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Interesting, can you elaborate? I just assumed it was proportional.
Because the individual chips in a panel are wired in series. Loose one chip and you loose them all. The current flows though all the chips in series.

Batteries work this way as well. Loose a single cell in a battery and you loose most of the power from the battery or both batteries in a pair of 6V batteries wired in series.
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Old 03-06-2019, 04:46 PM   #17
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When wired in series - solar panels (or batteries) - creates ONE solar panel out of the many. So, a blockage in one cell blocks the entire panel.
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Old 03-06-2019, 05:39 PM   #18
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Getting back to the OP's problem, I would think that he could safely use his 180w panel on his port by wiring in a 15 amp (according to Tuscontoy's calculation) breaker into the circuit between the port and the portable panel. That would protect any internal wiring from excessive current should the panel ever be operating at a super-efficient level.

And this way he'd get the full output of the panel in normal operating conditions.

(I bet that the breaker never trips)
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Old 03-07-2019, 10:31 AM   #19
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Getting back to the OP's problem, I would think that he could safely use his 180w panel on his port by wiring in a 15 amp (according to Tuscontoy's calculation) breaker into the circuit between the port and the portable panel. That would protect any internal wiring from excessive current should the panel ever be operating at a super-efficient level.

And this way he'd get the full output of the panel in normal operating conditions.

(I bet that the breaker never trips)
Tucsontoy's calculations were flawed. Most (12V) solar panels put out approximately 17-18 Volts in full sunlight. Consequently the O/P's 180W panel would be putting out approximately 10 Amps at ~18V, not 15A ...in full sunlight. Less sun....the voltage AND the current go down.
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Old 03-07-2019, 10:58 AM   #20
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Most (12V) solar panels put out approximately 17-18 Volts in full sunlight.
I have 3-100w 12v panels going to a MPPT controller. They each put out ~20v to 22v in direct sunlight. They are wired in parallel and the full-sun voltage of the bank is 22v. I've also tested each one individually with a multi-meter and 20v to 22v is the norm for each. I have one Zamp branded panel and two Renergy branded panels. But they each output the same voltage.
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