Solar Panel Ripped off roof of RV; How to replace with similar panel?

whatismouse

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Oct 11, 2020
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I had a renter hit somethings with my RV and ripped off one of my panels. If they even noticed, they didn't tell me, and I didn't notice myself until a while later when confused why my solar output was so low...

Anyways I need to replace the panel but I can't find an exact replacement:

. solar panels info.jpg


What considerations do I need to keep in mind while replacing a panel with a different panel? I figure the most important is to match the open circuit voltage? How close do I need to be?

My solar arrangement is 3s2p for a total of 1800w, each of the two parallel strings is 120Voc, or around 110V in real world conditions.

My other consideration is that I can't exceed the dimensions of this panel in either width or length.... (Dimensions: 65″ x 39″ x 1.5″)


Here is the out of stock panel: https://store.santansolar.com/product/santan-solar-300w-65in-new-gradeb/


Any help getting my array back in to form is much appreciated!!!
 

12VoltInstalls

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Where these screwed down?

I’d find a similar panel VOC and maxpower and buy enough to replace that string and sell the remaining ones.
 

whatismouse

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Oct 11, 2020
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I'd rather not replace any more than just the one... they are custom mounted by me and it was some damn hard work fitting them all in to limited roof space. Panels riveted to aluminum angle that is then double-sided eternabonded to roof, with a few screws on the leading edge for good measure.
 

sunshine_eggo

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I had a renter hit somethings with my RV and ripped off one of my panels. If they even noticed, they didn't tell me, and I didn't notice myself until a while later when confused why my solar output was so low...

Anyways I need to replace the panel but I can't find an exact replacement:

. View attachment 95627


What considerations do I need to keep in mind while replacing a panel with a different panel? I figure the most important is to match the open circuit voltage? How close do I need to be?

My solar arrangement is 3s2p for a total of 1800w, each of the two parallel strings is 120Voc, or around 110V in real world conditions.

My other consideration is that I can't exceed the dimensions of this panel in either width or length.... (Dimensions: 65″ x 39″ x 1.5″)


Here is the out of stock panel: https://store.santansolar.com/product/santan-solar-300w-65in-new-gradeb/


Any help getting my array back in to form is much appreciated!!!

In series, it's critical that the panels all have the same Imp/Isc. If not, all panels in the string will only operate at the lowest panel current.

In parallel, you need to be reasonably close with Vmp/Voc. That's likely a 60 cell panel based on the voltages and the "60M" in the model number. You'll need to get a 60 cell panel.

You may find you need to replace an entire string.
 

sunshine_eggo

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whatismouse

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Oct 11, 2020
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Please use a better method to secure your panels.
Google this: solar panel kills driver
I'm pretty sure it was a low or medium speed incident where they hit a branch and it just lifted the panel and popped a bunch of rivets off. Had it been screwed down everywhere, yes maybe the branch breaks first, or maybe the panel comes off anyways and then I'm left with a bunch of holes in the roof.... is that better?

obviously if it just flew off on its own on the highway I would be concerned....but I can see damage on the front corner of RV that indicates something was hit.
 

HRTKD

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If a panel came off once, it'll come off again unless you change how you mount them to the roof. I've driven past tree branches and encountered very high winds with no issues. I have very little confidence in "tape" mounting methods, especially if it's on a rubber roof.

My two 320 watt panels each use six brackets. Each bracket has at least one screw that goes into the truss of the RV's roof. My panels aren't going anywhere unless the bolts holding the brackets to the panels come loose. I check those annually. The brackets are checked annually during my roof inspection to ensure they are still firmly attached to the roof.
 
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