Updated: Jun 1
Hi everybody, we're back with another quick but hopefully helpful post
If you have a leisure battery with no built in way to keep it charged you might have noticed that they don't last for long. One of the easiest, cleanest, simplest and most probably cheapest solutions to this is adding solar panels and a charge controller to your set up.
This isn't a one stop solution to all of your recharging needs as they do have limitations. They are not great on cloudy days, can't charge your batteries at night and in winter they are less effective however for the majority of the time they are an awesome way to keep your batteries topped up.
For the winter I would think about installing a B2B charger for vehicles or a 600w wind turbine for non mobile applications. For more info in these option please check out the posts below.
HOW MUCH JUICE WILL A 300W SOLAR PANEL PUT BACK INTO YOUR BATTERY?
This all depends on the time of year but roughly in the summer it will top your battery up by 196 ah however in the winter it would only top your batteries up by 29.2 ah that is a huge difference
This would be a perfect size solar set up for somebody with either 4 X 100ah or 4 X 110ah batteries. For any larger this set up will help but not fully recharge your battery even in the summer.
To add this set up to your 12v system it is pretty simple and you will only need a few extra bits and pieces, all are listed below. As an amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases
The first thing you will need is 300W of solar panel's, Lg is one of the most efficient solar panel brands on the market so that is what we are suggesting for this set up.
This panel will fit on most MWB vans with room for a skylight or roof fan or on a LWB van with space for a skylight or roof vent at each end so is the perfect size for self build camper vans. This will also help keep thing simple as you will only need one set of roof brackets and no extra connectors.
LG 355W Mono Neon2 Black N5
Next you will need a solar charge controller. As it is a 355w solar panel the smallest solar charge controller we would get away with using would be 30 amp, however that will then pretty much be at capacity and we always like to size up slightly so it doesn't have to work flat out all of the time so for this set up we are going to suggest a 40 amps MPPT controller.
Renogy Rover 40 Amp 12V/24V DC Input MPPT Solar Charge Controller
To connect your solar panel to your charge controller you will need some solar cable and a 30 amp inline fuse.
Ficocean 1Pair MC4 Solar Panel Inline Fuse, 30A
BTSKY Pair Of 10AWG Solar Extension Cable with MC4 Female and Male Connector for Solar Panel Connectors, Solar Panel Adaptor Kit Tool (3M/10Feet)
The next thing you will need is some cable and an inline fuse to attach your battery to your solar charge controller. For this I use these.
TUOFENG 12 Gauge Wire,Electrical Wire,12 AWG Silicone Wire Hook Up Wire Cable 6 m [3 m Black and 3 m Red]
RKURCK 12V-24V DC 30 Amp Circuit Breaker, Fuse Holder, Inline Fuse Block For Car Audio Solar Inverter System Protection (30A)
and the last thing you will need is sum lugs to connect your cables to your battery terminals
electrapick 60PCS Bolt Hole Tinned Copper Terminals Set-Wire terminals Connector Cable lugs
So that is all you will need to get the solar working and your batteries charging but here are a few things you might find helpful.
7 Piece Solar Panel Mounting Bracket White Rectangle Set Kit Adhesive Bond For Caravans, Motorhomes, Boats & Any Flat Surface
Renogy Solar Panel 4 Pieces of Z Holder for Mounting Solar Panel Roof Mount Z Bracket with Nuts and Screws for Motorhome, Boat, Roof, Wall and Other Off-Gird Roof Installation
Offgridtec 006415 Roof Duct Dual Black For Motor Home Caravan Boat Solar Cable Duct
Solar Panel Brackets Black ABS Solar Panel Mounting Brackets 7 Drill-Free Corner Bracket Support Kit for Wood Frame RV Boat Campers Caravans Hood (Corner Bracket,Side Bracket,Cable Entry Gland)
Lowenergie Adjustable Angle Solar Panel Mounting Brackets Frame Shed Caravan Boat or Ground Mount
Renogy Solar Panel Bracket Pole Mount
Renogy® 5 Pair MC4 Male/Female Solar Panel PV Cable Connectors Double Seal Rings for Better Waterproof Effect
Ok so thats about it from us for now, we hope you all enjoyed it and found it useful
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