Replacing cable 120 W folding solar panel

Submitted: Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 15:50
ThreadID: 131997 Views:3196 Replies:4 FollowUps:8
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Can I ask the question .Can I upgrade the cable from my 120w panel.It is now 2x1.5 mm2 .Around 5 metres. I feel this may be on the light side .Cable from panels to reg.[which I am also renewing [blew fuse ?]] same size . Cable is then anderson plugged to very heavy cable on Topaz van to battery system 2x100 /or at times direct to aux battery on ute.
While it is all apart will give me a chance to upgrade .
Will I benifit by an upgrade cable and what size would help.
Many thanks for your help.Could not find helpfull answer in Exploroz history ??
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Reply By: Sand Man (SA) - Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 16:27

Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 16:27
Sure you can upgrade.
8 B&S cable is more than sufficient to do the job.
This cable can be bought at Battery World or most Auto Electricians. Just ask for heavy duty twin flat cable suitable for Anderson Connector termination. This may be slight overkill as the 120w panel would be putting out less than 10A, but the insulation is rugged and the diameter of the cable ensures good fit into the Anderson lugs. This also ensures no voltage drop will occur.

I have a 120w folding solar panel and using the cable as above, added a second circuit to the panel junction box, bypassing the on-board regulator in favor of a Ctek D250S dc-dc charger with built-in MPPT solar controller. I have a 5 metre lead and another 5 metre extension lead, all teminating with Anderson connectors.
Bill


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Follow Up By: fisho64 - Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 23:08

Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 23:08
I have a 120W panel also, I doubt you will see any benefit.
Mine produces about 6-7 amps peak
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 23:57

Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 23:57
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You should certainly see benefit from larger cable. 1.5mm2 is way too small.
5 metres of 1.5mm2 twin carrying 7 Amps will have a volt-drop of 0.84V with a power loss of 5.6W
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Allan

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Follow Up By: murranji - Saturday, Apr 02, 2016 at 21:04

Saturday, Apr 02, 2016 at 21:04
Confusing ? 8 B&S and 6mm2 I shall have do more reseach.
Thanks for all your help.
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Saturday, Apr 02, 2016 at 23:49

Saturday, Apr 02, 2016 at 23:49
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Murranji, here's a simple conversion chart for the wire gauges.
Note that AWG and B&S are the same.



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Allan

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Follow Up By: murranji - Sunday, Apr 03, 2016 at 18:35

Sunday, Apr 03, 2016 at 18:35
Thanks Allan
I think I may use about 5M either 6mm2 or 8 b&s and mount the regulator as a remote unit ,maybe with an anderson plug from source [panel] an another Anderson plug to load [ battery] making the reg. portable.
What do you think ? Cheers Murray
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Follow Up By: Allan B (Member, SunCoast) - Sunday, Apr 03, 2016 at 21:10

Sunday, Apr 03, 2016 at 21:10
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Sounds good to me mate.
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Reply By: Gronk - Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 19:52

Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 19:52
Where is the reg ??

5M of cable to the reg would ideally be approx 6mm2, and if the reg to battery is longer than 2 or 3 M, then this would be 10mm2.

If the Topaz is wired correctly, then the cable already installed should be at least 13 or 16mm2.
AnswerID: 598091

Follow Up By: murranji - Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 21:05

Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 21:05
Thanks Men The regulator is glued to the back of one of the solar panels.
Pos and Neg fro both panels enter there and exit the reg via one cable.
As I use panels in differing uses,
reg would be best there I figure ?
From what u say the cable I use now sounds very light.?
Sound as if I should use minimum 6mm2??
Again Thanks for your help....
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Follow Up By: Gronk - Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 21:35

Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 21:35
When I had a similar setup, I removed the reg off the panel and had it freestanding....

Had 15M of cable to the reg...which was at the end of the lead....which then plugged into the anderson at the drawbar of the KK.
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Reply By: Member -Pinko (NSW) - Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 22:14

Friday, Apr 01, 2016 at 22:14
Anderson power connections

This link will probably save you a lot of running around. Even phone them, they are very helpful.
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Reply By: Malcom M - Monday, Apr 04, 2016 at 08:46

Monday, Apr 04, 2016 at 08:46
I don't know the topaz but if it has a built in MMPT circuit then you should take your panel feed from before the glued on panel reg.

Your biggest loss in your system will be volts dropped due to cable length.
You are not really trying to pump massive current so the need for massive cable is not really needed.
Think power lines. How do you get zillions of amps through them to feed suburbs when they are only a finger width in size. The answer is in have high volts which negates some of the transmission loss when you process it at the regulator end. I'm simplifying this as you don't need pages of theory.

So, sensible sized cable but thicker if have long runs.
I run a 120w panel wired with 8B&S over a 15 meter length. Theoretically this is only good for about 8-9 amps and I should pump it up to 6B&S.
However 6B&S is bulkier PLUS you are very unlikely to ever get 100% output from your panels so massive cable in this application is usually overkill.

That said, if you already have heavy duty Anderson extension leads then use them as its silly to carry heaps of different sized cables if one can do multiple jobs.
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