300w solar panel

Submitted: Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 11:29
ThreadID: 139183 Views:1788 Replies:10 FollowUps:10
Advice on buying panel makes ect
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Reply By: Mick O - Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 13:06

Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 13:06
Strewth you are certainly economical on the words. A little bit of extra info would probably help. What are you using it for? Fitting it to? How much real estate do you have to fit it? Etc etc.

Cheers.
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trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
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Reply By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 14:09

Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 14:09
.


Marron, I'll give you some advice...... say "please".

Cheers
Allan

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Reply By: Gusthebus - Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 14:11

Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 14:11
Its a good idea.
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Reply By: RMD - Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 17:25

Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 17:25
Only buy good ones.
AnswerID: 628134

Reply By: marron - Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 17:40

Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 17:40
Sorry have not asked for info before on caravan main power use is for 12 volt vitrifrigo fridge led lights water pump radio CD player area for panel is 1400 x 1000 mm any advice would be appreciated thank you
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Follow Up By: Mick O - Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 18:18

Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 18:18
Thanks Marron. You'll not have enough real estate for a 300W single piece panel as these are usually around 1900 x 1000mm in size.

Best bet is to look at a 250W panel or 2 x 100W panels which should fit in the space you have.

It's really important to understand your actual consumption requirements as far as power goes. People will often install solar panels thinking their power needs will be solved and in fact nothing could be further from the truth. If sitting flat, they will only perform at peak efficiency for a limited time of the day and output will then ebb either side of that time dependent on the angle of the sun.

This article on exploroz is a good start without getting you bogged down in the intricacies of 12 volt DC.

Electricity for camping

Another consideration iks the type of solar controller (you should have an MPPT controller) and also the battery management system you have over your van batteries. Can it take open circuit current from the panels like many DC-DC chargers? This is one way of maximising your solar input.

As for brand, my recommendation is what ever you get, source it from a reputable supplier. Many panels aren't quite what they are made out to be so a reputable supplier will ensure a quality panel. I have no suggestions in that regard but a search of the forum through the search facility near the log in button at the top right of the forum page will produce a lot of great information.

Regards and all the best with it.

Mick

Building a DC electrical system for you 4x4/camper








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Reply By: qldcamper - Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 18:19

Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 18:19
Have a read on the Rad power site.
AnswerID: 628136

Follow Up By: marron - Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 23:32

Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 23:32
Will do thank you
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Follow Up By: Phil B (WA) - Sunday, Oct 13, 2019 at 08:09

Sunday, Oct 13, 2019 at 08:09
Hi qldcamper

I have tried to find your rad power site and come up with an electric bike - did you mean another site?
TIA

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Follow Up By: Member - Racey - Sunday, Oct 13, 2019 at 10:16

Sunday, Oct 13, 2019 at 10:16
RAD Power is marketed by Solar 4 RV in Rowville Vic.

Solar 4 RV
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Reply By: Member - peter_mcc - Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 22:58

Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 22:58
From something I wrote on the Track Trailer forums - be very careful, there are lots of panels out there with impossible figures.
--
There are lots of dodgy over-spec'd panels out there - ones where they claim "200w" but it's really only a 150W panel or so.

There's some more info here: https://forums.whirlpool.net.au/archive/2767233

but the basic theory is you get about 170W per m2 - work out the area of the panel in m2 and multiply it by 170 to get the expected output.

Example from the Whirlpool thread:
The supposed 160W panel is stated to be 870mm x 670mm with an efficiency of 17%.
.870 m x .670 m = 0.5829 square metres
.5829 sqm x 170 w/sqm= 99.093 watts
So its actually a 100W panel.
--
I found some claimed 250W panels - for example this one:
https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/143041541186

The quoted dimensions are 1.335 x 0.67m = 0.89445m2. They claim 18% efficiency. Using that and standard illumination of 1000W/m2 means 180W/m2. So only really a 161W panel... not the 250W they are marketing it as.

All the other 250W panels I found were the same (or very similar) dimensions so it is unlikely that any of them are really 250W panels (using the standard illumination figure).

This one is even worse if you assume the quoted dimensions are correct:
https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/323263062294
Unsurprisingly the two most recent reviews complain that it doesn't produce as much power as expected... hahahaha

This one looks better:
https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/202597572456
It works out to be around 200W


Looking around more there some panels which look legit - eg
https://www.solar4rvs.com.au/sr160q-super-rugged-textured-surface-1046-x-996-x
It is a 160W panel with an area of about 1.05m2. It's also $1560... so you could buy 8 or more of the cheaper ones. But the expensive one has a 5 year warranty, the cheap ones probably won't last very long (one of my 3 died within a year).

They also have cheaper ones 160W for $465 but with an area that matches the claimed output:
https://www.solar4rvs.com.au/160w-epdm-rubber-edge-earche-lightweight-solar-pan~18422

Interestingly a Road Tech Marine panel seems to check out as well:
https://www.roadtechmarine.com.au/100w-12v-semi-flexible-solar-panel-with-df-technology/p/ZM9158
Area is 0.94 x 0.69m = 0.6486m2 @ 170W/m2 = 110W (more than claimed because the dimensions include the border/etc which won't actually produce power).

I have no association with Solar4rvs or RTM and have no idea if their stuff is any good - they just have better search engine optimisation for what I searched for...
AnswerID: 628143

Follow Up By: marron - Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 23:30

Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 23:30
Thank you info is very helpful
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Reply By: mountainman - Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 23:36

Saturday, Oct 12, 2019 at 23:36
pretty safe bet on any of the solid panel REDARC solar panels.
Not cheap but not extremely expensive either
Havent bought their blanket range yet.

Best bit is buy the best quality you can afford.
Shortest cables/ decent sized cables possible and quality ... to minimize amps drop
AnswerID: 628144

Follow Up By: Member - silkwood - Thursday, Oct 17, 2019 at 06:36

Thursday, Oct 17, 2019 at 06:36
I feel the REDARC panels to be in the "extremely expensive" range for what they are...

Cheers,
Mark
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Follow Up By: Dave B18 - Saturday, Oct 19, 2019 at 08:00

Saturday, Oct 19, 2019 at 08:00
*EVERYTHING* Redarc is a ridiculous price.
The Redarc solar panels are madness in prices.
Redarc is SUPER expensive for big retail price markups and not for good reasons. Not overly enamoured with Redarc and there is usually something better and less expensive.
1
FollowupID: 902508

Reply By: Keith B2 - Sunday, Oct 13, 2019 at 12:28

Sunday, Oct 13, 2019 at 12:28
I recently installed 9 RAD Power 110 watt panels on the roof of my home-built caravan. They haven't done any hard work yet but seem to be working fine.
These panels are light, thin, flexible and require an air gap underneath them so that they don't overheat. I can't speak for any other brand, but I am guessing they would be the same.
They need to be stuck down with special 3M double sided tape using plastic spacers supplied by Solar 4 RVs. If you go with RAD Power it would be wise to follow their recommendations to the letter so that they neither cook themselves or blow away in the wind.
Keith
AnswerID: 628148

Follow Up By: marron - Sunday, Oct 13, 2019 at 13:10

Sunday, Oct 13, 2019 at 13:10
Thanks for info
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FollowupID: 902436

Follow Up By: RMD - Sunday, Oct 13, 2019 at 17:22

Sunday, Oct 13, 2019 at 17:22
Keith B2
Nice job with the van. It looks the goods with the panels. All you need. You could almost use the power to drive the rig via an electric motor on the wheels, Travel assist.
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FollowupID: 902440

Follow Up By: Keith B2 - Sunday, Oct 13, 2019 at 18:42

Sunday, Oct 13, 2019 at 18:42
There are a couple of LiPo4 batteries to run an aircon overnight. Happy wife etc....
Keith
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FollowupID: 902442

Reply By: Dave B18 - Saturday, Oct 19, 2019 at 08:03

Saturday, Oct 19, 2019 at 08:03
1 x 300W is not going to be sufficient to run a Vitrifrigio DP150i.
Look to a company that specialises in solar panels and low voltage electrics and been in the business for near forever
http://www.lowenergydevelopments.com.au/solarpanels-poly-mono
AnswerID: 628216

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