help with solar

Submitted: Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 14:45
ThreadID: 104655 Views:2998 Replies:11 FollowUps:21
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hey guys i have few questions

i have found this
http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/271097398605?ru=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ebay.com.au%2Fsch%2Fi.html%3F_sacat%3D0%26_from%3DR40%26_nkw%3D271097398605%26_rdc%3D1

and have been told by many it great and works well

question is will i be able to run my engel of this about 60L i think the size is

also what battery's do i get for this to suit

link me if possible thanks

Shaun
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Reply By: Herbal - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 15:14

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 15:14
Yep...It looks OK.

Have a look at the label of your Engle to see what amps or wattage it is. It will be somewhere around 3 to 5 amps.

Now multiply that by 8. That is for 8 hours per day...Or to be really on the safe side multiply by 12 which would assume that your Engle will be running 12 hours out of every 24.

So say 5 amps x 8 hours = 40 amp hours. So you need to make 40 amp hours per day.

That solar panel is 120 watts...120 divided by 12 volts = 10 amps. So it will make your 40 amp hours in about 4 hours...You need 8 hours of use, so 8 divided by 4 = 2 or if you like half...

So now halve the 40 amp hours you need = 20... Your battery usage should be about 20% of the batteries capacity so the perfect size battery would be a 100 amp hour.

Type of battery ? I am not brave enough to suggest one... Many people use AGM. A lot of people are now turning to LiFePo4.
AnswerID: 519455

Follow Up By: Herbal - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 15:17

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 15:17
Sorry...Engel...I have been typing all day and my fingers don't want to play anymore :)
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Follow Up By: Skulldug - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 15:49

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 15:49
Thanks Herbal. At last an answer on solar humans can understand.

Skull
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Follow Up By: Herbal - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 16:12

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 16:12
Thanks Skull...

You had me worried for a sec...when I saw the email telling me there was a follow-up, I thought 'oh no a tecno natsy is attacking my LiFePo4 comment'...

But I still think one of them will be along soon to tell us all about how fantastic AGM batteries are :)

I will throw a brew in the Engel for ya mate...so if we ever meet there will be a cold one ready for ya :)
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Follow Up By: John and Regina M - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 16:18

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 16:18
Sorry but a 120 watt panel will not produce 10 amps. Maximum current output is at open circuit vlotage which is usually about 17 volts. So the calculation is out by a lot.

Additionally, maximum output is in ideal conditions, full sun, perfect angle etc.

If you use 120 watt divided by 12 (volts) divided by half (efficiency) x 4 (hours of good sun) you will get a reasonable estimate of daily current output.
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Follow Up By: Herbal - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 16:35

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 16:35
That is dis-tar-pointing...I was expecting a LiFePo4 attack :)

Anyway, thanks for the input John and Regina...I stand corrected...

My math to work out that a perfect sized AGM battery connected to a 120 watt solar panel to run a 60 litre Engel fridge is 100 amp hour...is wrong!

Yep, I stand corrected...A 100 amp hour AGM will NOT run a 60 litre Engel fridge when being charged by a 120 watt solar panel :)

.......................................................

See Skull? I told ya so !
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Follow Up By: Skulldug - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 16:45

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 16:45
Here we go again. Shaun asked what size battery he needed. Obviously an AAA would be too small and a bank of six 120 AH would be overkill.

Without the gobbledygook, depends where you are, what angle your kloaka is to the sun or how thick your wires are - what is the answer?

So far I'm hearing 100 AH.
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Follow Up By: John and Regina M - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 17:25

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 17:25
Don't get me wrong. A 110 ah battery will run the Engel. How long depends on what it recharging it. Just solar? Solar plus car? Engel on freeze? Never opened?

Perhaps more info required as to the actual scenario.
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Follow Up By: Skulldug - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 18:29

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 18:29
John or Regina,

Surely it doesn't need to be this difficult? If I am building a house, the various codes will tell the trades how big the wires and pipes need to be. I would never have to work it out for myself.

If I am trying to put together a caravan or camper trailer for use in Australia (avoiding southern Tassy in winter and Darwin in November), how big would my battery/solar system need to be?

If I only carry enough water for 5 days free camping, then I can only stay in one place for 5 days without re-charging from the vehicle. You can't use a generator everywhere so that only needs to be a bonus-back-up.

If someone actually suggested a ratio of battery/solar per day assuming say a small radio, 40l fridge and a couple of LEDs to last for 5 days, that would interest a lot of people. If someone wants to run a bigger fridge or something extra, they can spend a bit more on battery and or solar. Yes, if the weather is cr@p solar can't be relied on.

Is there a simple rule of thumb? No one is going to sue if you get it wrong.

Herbal had a go and I agree with it. 120 panel, 120 ah battery (sorry Herbal) will run a fridge and some cooking lights in most places that you would comfortably camp. Run more or get some cloudy weather - go bigger or go home early.

I'm not saying my figures are right. I just wish someone would give a simple guideline (yes, or post a link to something I haven't read).

Skull
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Follow Up By: Herbal - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 20:00

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 20:00
I have lost my internet for now...So I am now using my mobile phone as a modem...

The OP asked a simple question. He (or she) was given a simple answer. There is nothing wrong with the math that I used.

The main competitor to Engel, Waeco offer at retail level a 40AH battery pack to run fridges ! ARE THEY WRONG ?????

No one cares about your techno gooblygook....You are not applying for a job! Shaun asked what size battery and what type. The answer remains that a 100 AH battery will be just perfect for the job. When and if Shaun goes in search of such battery, he (or she) will find many brands and makes around that figure. Some will be 105AH and some will be 110AH and others 120AH.

The OP like me and most other members do not give a flying rats bum about your techno "what ifs" and "depends on"...and if you think we do...then you need a new hobby !!!

If you cannot give a simple and understandable answer to some one not trained in your field...then you are not trained in your field !!

..............................................................

Interesting point Skull...Do you think if I angled the dangle of my koala to be perplexed by the radius of the dongle of my dingo and cambered to the carriage of my kanga, I might get .0003675 watts more out of my 10 watt garage solar set up?

I have just put another brew in the Engel for Skull...Soon there wont be any room for my beer :)
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Reply By: allein m - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 15:34

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 15:34
be carefull there are a number of people on ebay who have been selling solar products which are not up to standard most open for a month or so and close after lots of complaints and open up under a new name

now I am not saying this is one of them but sadly there are a few people out there who enjoy the ability to hide there true aims

there was one guy who is well known to consumer affairs and he is on the move all the time .

he is a true rouge and has no concern about the number of people who he has ripped off


AnswerID: 519456

Follow Up By: Shaun A - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 15:46

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 15:46
thanks for that mate

atm i just looking at a solar setup similar to this so more help the better cheers
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Reply By: Member - nick b - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 16:07

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 16:07
I got my panel from Bit Deals on ebay 140w $ 203.67

It was recommended here on the forum few years ago , fright free & very quick from Melbourne , well made inc cover .

A mate has also got one from them & loves it too

I would recommend them .

cheers
Cheers Nick b
VKS 737 ( 0915 )
Wish the missus was as dirty as the tailgate

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AnswerID: 519457

Follow Up By: Skulldug - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 16:24

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 16:24
Another vote for Bit Deals. I have a 120 w folding jobbie and couldn't be happier. Well, I could but can't share how on this forum.
Skull
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Follow Up By: Garry S3 - Friday, Oct 11, 2013 at 11:10

Friday, Oct 11, 2013 at 11:10
I thought their product is alright. However, after receiving their product, I questioned them regarding their MPPT controller. Their listing state that they guarantee output more than the actual stated output. Amazing. And then I went on to test the panel. Somehow the output was around 15% less. Sent them a message and was treated like an idiot. They eventually sent me a graph showing me that it is normal in winter to get less output even when your solar is facing the sun directly. I am going to do another test since its freaking hot down here now and hopefully they are right. But one thing I have learned is not to deal with them ever again. They were so rude and simply said that I didn't know anything and just send the product back for a refund. Hate how online store treat their customers nowdays.
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Reply By: malken - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 19:39

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 19:39
I am another happy customer of bitdeals. I have bought panels off them 3 times over 3 years and have had no trouble with them.
Mal
AnswerID: 519463

Reply By: Member - phantom - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 19:40

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 19:40
Hi Shaun,
Have a 140 W from Bit Deals hooked up with a 75 Ah Thumper. No issues powering our 40 l Engel and an assortment of lights, charging phones, ipads etc. opted for the 75 due to portability and weight. Suits our needs.
AnswerID: 519464

Follow Up By: Shaun A - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 21:35

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 21:35
can ya link me one of those battery's you are talking about
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Follow Up By: Member - phantom - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 21:50

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 21:50
Hi Shaun,
Not sure how to post a link, just google Thumper Battery. Made in SA and a good bot of kit. Have taken ours around Australia and on many camping trips with absolutely no issues. They are portable as well. Larger sizes are heavy and not what I would say as portable - too heavy.
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Follow Up By: Garry S3 - Friday, Oct 11, 2013 at 11:12

Friday, Oct 11, 2013 at 11:12
You want to check out fullriver battery. they are pretty popular. have heaps of different sizes too.
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Reply By: Member - Bruce C (NSW) - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 19:46

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 19:46
Hi Shaun,

It depends on what you can afford but I would go bigger on the panel, say 160W or a bit
better and a 120 AH battery, preferably AGM if you can.

A some people buy the individual panels and fit them together as a folding unit.
A suitcase handle and a couple of hinges as well as clips to keep it closed is all that is needed aside from a couple of legs to support the panels.

Bit Deals, one of the most highly recommended suppliers is currently doing a complete 190 watt folding unit for $299 free delivery and an MPPT regulator.190 Watt Folding Solar

Couple that to a 120AH battery and you should be inside the ball park.

Cheers, Bruce.
At home and at ease on a track that I know not and
restless and lost on a track that I know. HL.

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Reply By: tazbaz - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 21:18

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 21:18
All the american language "hey guys", "ball park". This is Aus not US. Too many watching commercial tv.
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Follow Up By: Ross M - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 23:34

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 23:34
tazbaz, I agree, hay guys are American hay farmers to me. That is if you call everyone guys, which are actually the wires holding your TV antennae up straight.

Ball Parks are very small and they keep hitting the Bl%$dy thing outside all the time.
What does Aussie mean?
I got a solar panel is now, I gotten a solar panel. I wonder if it is "ill gotten".
Invasion by the Septics isn't needed, the brain washing is complete.
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Follow Up By: tazbaz - Thursday, Oct 10, 2013 at 15:01

Thursday, Oct 10, 2013 at 15:01
G'day Ross M
Good to see there are a few patriots out there like yourself not wanting an invasion of the septics and their awful lingo and disrespect for english grammar- not to mention their disgusting food and their view that they are the world police. On the other hand , in my experience the septics are ok as individuals. Just like the human race in that regard.
I met a septic rocket scientist a few years ago. Nice bloke. He lived in Flarida/Florida but did not know where the Tropic of Cancer was!! Would you believe it?
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Reply By: Shaun A - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 21:39

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 21:39
can anyone be able to link me some battery's and gear that would suit me best thanks more links the better cheers
AnswerID: 519475

Follow Up By: Member - phantom - Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 22:56

Wednesday, Oct 09, 2013 at 22:56
Shaun,
A bit more info may help.
What type of camping are you doing - camper trailer, tent, caravan etc.?
Is the battery to be permanent in your car or do you want something portable? Where will the solar panels be?
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Follow Up By: Member - Bruce C (NSW) - Thursday, Oct 10, 2013 at 13:30

Thursday, Oct 10, 2013 at 13:30
Shaun, here is a link to a battery
AGM battery link

Supplier is Autolecau and I have used them a few times before and can recommend them. Also free postage.


160 Watt folding solar panel
This is from Bit Deals and is a complete unit including MPPT regulator.
Very reputable mob to deal with is Bit Deals.

All you need then is some 6mm wire (red, black and double insulated) to hook the panels up to the battery, about 5 metres so that you can move the panels around to follow the sun and an anderson plug for each end and one for the solar panel, also you will need some way to terminate the lead onto the battery. Bit deals has a deal going on at the moment with Anderson plugs so you could get them there as well.

The wire you can get from ABR Sidewinder who is as good as the best on price and delivery and Derrick is also a business member here at ExplorOz. He also trades on Ebay and I can recommend him whichever way you do it.

Note the only negative with folding panels is that you cannot leave them out and set up, then go away somewhere as someone else will have them off you.

As you have not mentioned what you have re camping facility, eg van, motorhome, tent, camper trailer we cannot hone our replies any tighter than this.

Cheers, Bruce.
At home and at ease on a track that I know not and
restless and lost on a track that I know. HL.

Lifetime Member
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Follow Up By: Shaun A - Thursday, Oct 10, 2013 at 23:39

Thursday, Oct 10, 2013 at 23:39
will be doing with camper trailer
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Follow Up By: Garry S3 - Friday, Oct 11, 2013 at 11:16

Friday, Oct 11, 2013 at 11:16
Try this Fullriver agm deep cycle

https://www.toughland.com.au/batteries.html

60Amps should be sufficient for camper trailer. they do free delivery too
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Reply By: bks - Thursday, Oct 10, 2013 at 06:03

Thursday, Oct 10, 2013 at 06:03
I bought an 80watt panel from OZ plaza nearly 2 years ago. I have been very happy with it.

I run an 80ltr Waco with a 120amp hour AGM Battery. During the colder months it recharges the overnight usage by lunch time, then keeps up with the usage while keeping the battery full for the rest of the day.

During VERY HOT weather it loses its efficiency and the battery cant keep up after about 3 days. To improve this I have put on heavier wiring with a MTTP regulator which I placed near the battery. This summer will tell how much this has boosted output.

In hind site I should have got a 120 watt panel, to cope with the very hot weather, but I can add extra panels to it quite easily.

.
AnswerID: 519483

Reply By: Member - Toyocrusa (NSW) - Thursday, Oct 10, 2013 at 10:44

Thursday, Oct 10, 2013 at 10:44
Hi Shaun. I have just recently completed converting my van over to a 200ah LiFePo4 battery system. I replaced my solar panels with 150 panels from Low Energy Developements as their panel specs are far superior to most. I am in my 3rd week of travelling and my system has performed far in excess of my old 100ah AGM under similar conditions. When I return home in 3 weeks I will put my old system (3 yr old AGM, 2x90watt fixed panels {could be made into a portable} and choice of MPPT or Std. regulator) up for sale on the ad section. I am on the NSW south coast so freight could be a problem but if you are close it would be a cheap way to start out. Cheers,Bob
AnswerID: 519491

Reply By: Garry S3 - Friday, Oct 11, 2013 at 10:39

Friday, Oct 11, 2013 at 10:39
Im not usually comfortable buying from ebay. However, this seller was pretty alright. Got my solar within 3 days and it worked pretty well.

http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Solar-Panel-Folding-Kit-Caravan-Camping-Power-140w-Mono-Charging-Kit-/290920906453?pt=AU_Solar&hash=item43bc3cbed5

140w will be able to keep up with a 60l engel no problem. I am using this 140 to run my 70l evakool
AnswerID: 519534

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