SOLAR PANELS QUESTION

I have just heard if you have solar panels fitted to your van and you van catches fire, fire services can not put the fire out as the solar panels continue to produce power, has anyone else heard this????
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Reply By: CSeaJay - Sunday, Mar 13, 2011 at 20:49

Sunday, Mar 13, 2011 at 20:49
Thmakes no sense to me

Water on solar or water on the power cables will not do much at all (except damage the solar - who cares about that in a fire?)

I'm sure forumites will correct me if i am wrong, but to me this is a (bad) urban myth


CJ
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Reply By: Member - res.q.guy (Vic.) - Sunday, Mar 13, 2011 at 21:10

Sunday, Mar 13, 2011 at 21:10
That's news to me !!!!!!!!!!!!!
And I am in a Fire Brigade.
Cheers
Neil
AnswerID: 448128

Reply By: Mike DiD - Sunday, Mar 13, 2011 at 21:18

Sunday, Mar 13, 2011 at 21:18
What a ridiculous extrapolation.

Emergency services have been warned about the dangers of solar panels on houses because these can put out thousands of watts at 400 volts - enough to cause electrocution, even after the mains supply has been disconnected.

Solar Panels on vans put out 12 or 24 volts at maybe 20 amps.

If you put a shortcircuit across a car battery it can put out 1000 amps causing metal to glow red hot !!! Yet emergency services don't stand back and "Sorry, too dangerous, there's a battery on board that van."

A case of a little knowledge being dangerous.
AnswerID: 448130

Reply By: Motherhen - Sunday, Mar 13, 2011 at 23:16

Sunday, Mar 13, 2011 at 23:16
Aside from the answers you have received, if your van catches fire, by the time the fire brigade gets their truck out - even if you are close by, in most cases they won't be able to save much.

Motherhen
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Follow Up By: Member - Serendipity(WA) - Monday, Mar 14, 2011 at 00:53

Monday, Mar 14, 2011 at 00:53
So true Motherhen - thats why I carry multiple fire extinquishers and a fire blanket. And a pump detergent bottle. Even then it might not be enough.

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Follow Up By: The Landy - Monday, Mar 14, 2011 at 08:32

Monday, Mar 14, 2011 at 08:32
And I think one of the mosti mprtant pieces of equipment that you can have in a 4WD is a fire-extinguisher. Like you we have a couple....

Cheer's, The Landy
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Follow Up By: Lucko - Monday, Mar 14, 2011 at 13:09

Monday, Mar 14, 2011 at 13:09
Couldn't agree more re. the value of fire extinguishers. I note that Aldi have 1Kg extinguishers on special from this Thursday - $12.99. Seems like good value for a spare or two.
Mark
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Follow Up By: Motherhen - Monday, Mar 14, 2011 at 22:55

Monday, Mar 14, 2011 at 22:55
Just be aware that those small fire extingushers only last seconds rather than minutes, so unless you are there at the very start, go to plan B; escape with what you safely can.

We had a vehicle fire started under dashboard (electrical short). It was a group of youngsters who stopped and sacrificed their Friday night beer that saved our Landcruiser - all the same it was thousands of dollars worth of damage repaired under insurance claim. A car fire extinguisher wouldn't have done the job.

I heard of one person saving their motorhome (i recall fire started from an overheated wheel bearing) with one of those hand pump to pressure garden sprays; they hold around 10 litres of water i think.

Mh

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Reply By: Member - Jack - Monday, Mar 14, 2011 at 07:36

Monday, Mar 14, 2011 at 07:36
There was something flying around last week on tv warning of the dangers of solar panels on houses connected to the 240v inverters. I think it came up as part of some flood recovery news. The Urban Mythologists may have decided to extend that to caravans.

Jack
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