diy solar

diy solar

Building a small camper with my son. I have begun planning my power and could use some suggestions.

Just out of curiosity, is there a reason you bought 2x 12v batteries instead of a single 24v battery?
I might break the system up if it is overpowered for our needs. I felt like it gave me the ability to create 2 12V systems and I could still add 2 more 12V if I wanted to increase to 200Ah
 
I'd search locally for used panels that will fit in your space. You'll get a lot more output and bang for your buck.
 
It may not matter, but those AIO use more power in standby than a SCC by itself.
True, but he's got a LOT of battery there to work with and this is a learner project, so I would say the ease of install and wiring are worth the extra standby power. Plus, turning off the unit when not in use will keep the SCC working with almost no standby power which puts it back in the realm of a component system.

The option of spending $$RealMoney for an optimized system just doesn't seem worth the hassle for this particular project.
 
Well, so much for that AIO. Vevor sent a refund and said it was not available anytime in the next 2 months (yet it still sits on their website and on Amazon.)

Could I just use my original inverter and add something like this as a peripheral?


I'd then just have to pick up an MPPT SCC and be pretty much in the same boat as an AIO?
 

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I'd search locally for used panels that will fit in your space. You'll get a lot more output and bang for your buck.
Thanks for the tip. Any suggestions on how to identify age of panels or specific signs to avoid outside of obvious damage? Is it as simple as testing the open circuit voltage with a multimeter in sunlight to be sure of their efficiency?
 
Check out that AIO that I linked earlier, that may just do the trick you're after, otherwise there's a few options over at watts247.com you can check out. They have 12v, 24v, and 48v AIO's to choose from.

Don't bother with anything Victron for this project, it's just for flexing your wallet at this point. That 16a charger alone is the same price as the entire 1500w AIO that I linked above. You're just paying for the name brand.

Going to components rather than an AIO can be done but it's more complicated, I don't know how in depth you want to get on this project. Unless you cherry pick components and pay the extra for top tier, the standby consumption is going to be about even. AIO's are also easier to incorporate shore power easier.

As for checking panels, check the voltage between a few panels to look for outliers and check the amperage again for outliers. The numbers you see on the meter should be pretty close to the numbers on the sticker.

Also look very closely for bubbles, discolorations, cracks, peels, etc. If there's any physical issues, move on to the next panel.
 
Check out that AIO that I linked earlier, that may just do the trick you're after, otherwise there's a few options over at watts247.com you can check out. They have 12v, 24v, and 48v AIO's to choose from.

Don't bother with anything Victron for this project, it's just for flexing your wallet at this point.

Going to components rather than an AIO can be done but it's more complicated, I don't know how in depth you want to get on this project.

As for checking panels, check the voltage between a few panels to look for outliers and check the amperage again for outliers. The numbers you see on the meter should be pretty close to the numbers on the sticker.

Also look very closely for bubbles, discolorations, cracks, peels, etc. If there's any physical issues, move on to the next panel.
If we decided to go with components are there any other decent 24V AC chargers that could work besides the Victron?
 
I believe I've now just realized that you can charge a battery from two sources at once - also that you can run a different array with another SCC.

Now I want to build a solar farm.

In the meantime, I could just pick up a small 10A/24V charger for LiFePO4 batteries. Might be a little more legwork than in the AIO - but, it can essentially do the same thing...slower.
 
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Thanks for the tip. Any suggestions on how to identify age of panels or specific signs to avoid outside of obvious damage? Is it as simple as testing the open circuit voltage with a multimeter in sunlight to be sure of their efficiency?
Red beat me to it.
I haven't figured out of to check age besides ask if the seller knows than trust your gut.
You can also short the leads together and make sure current is flowing. Obviously you want to have them angled correctly when testing.
 
If you get a charger/inverter that already has an MPPT in it and 20a or more, you won't need another controller for the second panel. The only time you'd need another controller is if you try to mix & match different size panels like a 200w and a 60w.

Link to the 24v PWM unit please? I seem to think that EcoWorthy makes PWM based AIO's, and it would be OK, but don't be suprised if it dies before too long. Either way, throw up a link and let us take a look. As a learning project on a budget it would probably be fun and cheap.
The Eco-worthy says it's MPPT on Amazon. Strange 30a mppt, not on eco-worthy website
 
I believe I've now just realized that you can charge a battery from two sources at once - also that you can run a different array with another SCC.
Oh yeah, you can stack chargers to the sky if you really wanted to! Doing different size arrays on different controllers is about the only way to mix & match panels of different sizes without nerfing something and you can stack battery chargers as well. At a certain point you have to consider that the batteries you use can only take in so much and it can get ridiculous. You've got 2 batteries, each can take 50a, so if you've got more than 100a worth of charging it's becoming an issue, but for a small learner system it's pretty hard to get there.
 
I've finally found the project making the sports cards disappear from the closet...
 
Oh, I just remembered! There is one absolutely critical step in this project that MUST be done:

Ya gotta post pictures, we love that kinda stuff on here. ?
 
Remember big DC copper wire is $$$, AC wire is cheap. Keep all of your equipment close and the wires short. Make long runs using AC
 

I know VEVOR can be dicey but I have 2 pieces of equipment from them in my ice cream shops and have never had an issue. I'm curious to see your opinion(s) on it. I see a 30-day return policy but I am not finding any warranty.
I have 4x505Wp panels do you think that would work with it?
Or how many panels could support?
 

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