Aidan. I’ve had a good experience with a portable panel and discuss the pros and cons of that here: http://richard.mackney.com/portable-folding-solar-panel-review/. To provide plenty of charging power to the leisure battery a large 270w solar panel is fitted to the roof and wired to a 30a solar controller. It’s not a daily occurrence and the movement is minimal. Pop-tops and semi-flexible panels work well when mounting a solar panel on a campervan roof. Doesn’t look as good and I’ve seen plenty of internal installations from professional fitters. Just wondering have you used this in a hot country. The silicone is stopping the wind from getting any lift so there’s not much force on the bolts. Solar Panel Kits for Mazda Bongo & VW T4 / T5 /T6 and California camper vans. On my roof 20mm was absolutely perfect. 12b Knights Way However, having tried to charge up the battery using a battery charger, it became apparent that the battery itself was a goner. It came off easily with just the silicone being used – If I had glued it, it would of removed all of the roof paint. Therefore I assume no sealant placed under the panel at the front and rear ? A solar panel can be ideal for keeping your battery topped up during winter storage, especially if you have a caravan or motorhome with a battery-powered alarm system. Home / VW T25 Parts / 12V Management, Upgrades & Intelligent Charging Systems / FLEXi SUN – 150W Flexible Solar Panel FLEXi SUN – 150W Flexible Solar Panel $ 259.06 – $ 263.86 Hi Richard, really good post thanks. Explore 218 listings for Solar panel for campervan at best prices. So will full sun on a metal roof will this not be reached. The other thing I was wondering was about how you fixed it to the roof. I have a 12v cigarette female socket coming out of the solar controller so the Bestek can be plugged in to that and also retain the inline fuse that comes with the device (and benefit from the low voltage protection, as you say). I found that the new panel had the holes in different places. A solar panel on the roof of your campervan can dramatically increase your independence. The manufacturers state it is a 60W fridge but runs on average 13W/h. The addition of a Solar Panel can prolong your leisure battery life whilst stationary. £87.99. I was wondering how you routed your cable through the rear panel and into the control unit. So you can see it will struggle with the fridges demand. We are away at the moment on the south coast . can you give it a charge on the mains and monitor it’s capacity? I think the project is still valid, a consideration would be if you can find a more powerful panel for a smaller budget these days. The weather is a bit cloudy and the panel is struggling to meet the demands of the fridge. Tagged: Equipment, Features, Solar Power. Only 1 left. Chris, Awesome write up thanks! Renogy Solar Panel Kits. I mean, the panel is fixed to the roof by glue, tape and bolts, so you still suggest this approach ? see all. The PMS in the campervan handles all of the higher voltage stuff complete with individual fuses etc … https://flic.kr/p/uDCrgj, I think you could get away with the USB and LED lights being on the PMW but maybe put the fridge direct to the battery (through an inline fuse and maybe a 12v DC low voltage cut-out). Hi Aidan, hope you’re enjoying your time away. 150W Flexible Solar Panel Campervan, Motorhome and Caravan Kit. I’ve not got a detailed read out like yours but the voltmeter shows 14v or 13.8v across the leisure battery when the sun is out and the LED on the PMS is 100%. Pictures of the removal added to the post above. I’m doing something similar on my T4 this weekend. He thought there might be a risk of the cable failing and presenting a fire risk. Anyway, no, I(we) just drilled through both from the top. During the night it probably comes on every 10 minutes for a few minutes at a time. Hi Rich, Indel B say that it is 60W installed power and runs an average of 13W per hour, obviously it only comes on to cool for a minute or two and then cuts off again. Very neat. The remote read out seems to be showing a max at the moment of around 3 amps, often lower. Does it have an auto cut-off (for DC & USB) when the battery voltage drops below a certain point? Hi Richard, I bypassed basically by running the solar controller directly onto the leisure battery (with an inline fuse). 2. Great writeup – just looking at the same 100W deal from Best Eco Shop, you have inspired me to place the order! Best regards Like you have ordered the glue to stick panel down but now don’t like the idea that it is so permanent . Recreational Vehicle (RV) Camping/Hiking. Hi Aidan, the cable provided to the panel is heavily over spec for the amps (thick) and I don’t think it will be a problem with the roof movement. great blog thanks. Our 55w, 110w and 165w kits include all you need to get started. Hi, I used the solar extension cable to connect both the panel to the controller with the connectors (as the cable run supplied with the panel is short) and the rest of the extension to run from the controller to the battery (via another online fuse). Thanks for detailed reply. i will go with the stick on panel as i’ve had leaks before when drilling holes in roof. , Hi Mark, I must admit the LCD screen is a bit of a pain to use, but the adaptor does the job of splitting the outputs. However, I did like this external option running into rear light grommet http://i690.photobucket.com/albums/vv263/philipsmith1969/solar/file_zpswnvcijnb.jpg. . I know that they are replaced if found to be under performing if some of the cells are not quite connected. The VW Caledonia SWB starts from £48,995 (“brand new secondhand”) or from £56,995 (brand new) and you can specify many extra design touches, to make it uniquely yours. ... 80 WATT SOLAR PANEL + MOUNTS monocrystaline campervan motorhome VW camper RV 80w. Solar Power Calculator. What type of bolts and washers did you use? As Matt discusses in his video, first he added up the total power requirements for all his devices. I’m going to find a 240v inverter that’ll allow me to monitor battery level and plug in USB at the same time. anyway great blog and will be doing the same soom. Just on the sides? http://richard.mackney.com/portable-folding-solar-panel-review/, http://i690.photobucket.com/albums/vv263/philipsmith1969/solar/file_zpswnvcijnb.jpg, The 13W fridge draws a current of (13/12) =, The alternator when driving from site to site (, The PMS charging unit when on electric hookup. The silicone is still a pain to remove. Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. totals it instead of scrolling through each port in use). I soldered the wires directly on and filled the box with silicon. Just ordered same solar panel fromsame company as well. 100-199 W. 200-299 W. Not specified. Well, the panel fitted failed. That should tick all the boxes, as I’ve now got all my other devices running through the charge controller to protect my battery from over-draining. This is just a small sample. I’ll always inspect it frequently. Cheers in advance I wonder if you can check the panel for efficiency. 3. Some customize flexible solar panels as their request for their RVs, such as special size to be perfect for their camping vans, no eyelets in the corners, junction box on the back of solar panel. Unfortunately, mine looks the same, but doesn’t function quite the same as yours. Airflow underneath? This is great service from the company but it still meant I had to remove the old panel. These cookies do not store any personal information. Updated 22/06/2020: View our best motorhome solar panels for essential power, just right for a short trip or lengthy jaunts. I’ve a reimo but struggling with the route and cable slack. Nice writeup. Hi Scott, my cable hole is close to the material on the inside, it then runs down with enough slack for it to open and close. Does the panel still work when the roof gets hot. Bodans Camper Vans What sealant did you use? I take it you have a split charge relay and the leisure battery is getting a feed once the engine is running? Copyright 2020 Bodans UK Ltd | All Rights Reserved, Dual charging for leisure & vehicle batteries, Multiwire cells, which greatly increase current flow, 9-layer construction with hard-wearing ETFE surface, Immunity from micro-cracking of the cells. I think the panel holes would take M6 if you wanted thicker bolts (and larger holes in your roof). Hi Richard , FAST & FREE. I see you have an Austop roof like mine, I’ve been looking at a semi permanent solution and your way looks just the ticket! campervan solar panel. Our fridge has a 40 w usage. Haven’t driven the van for a couple of days so that’s pretty good. Renogy makes a large selection of solar panel kits. Hi Heathy, It’s all about the position and it’s worth getting the compass out when pitching up. It just needs to go through a solar charge controller. The panel I fitted to my roof finally failed and I was sent a new panel F.O.C. When the roof is up and it’s facing the sun it does get a better charge. Put the batteries in a safe, dry place. The solar panel seems to hover around 12v and 1 to 3amps. Battlefield Enterprise Park Im also concerned using adhesive but would rather bolt the corners to aid security. Rich. A bit puzzled as to why the alternator isn’t topping it up better after a long run . But opting out of some of these cookies may affect your browsing experience. Is the leisure battery holding charge well? Don’t want it flipping off…lol Yes, mine is connected to the leisure battery only. Aesthetics and weight. I’m investigating adding an air gap between the panel and roof by using strips of aluminium cross section that would allow bolts to be re-positioned along the bars. the alternator should be providing at least 13.8v to your leisure battery – can you check this? Can I mount a solar panel to a leisure battery without connecting it to my main battery? The panel is 100w and seems to keep the leisure battery well topped up. Where are these? In the summer months, the right size and quality of panel will produce sufficient amps to run your fridge, lights and water pump without the need to plug into 230v mains power or to have to drive the vehicle in order to recharge the leisure batteries. What’s your experience of the performance of the roof panel when the pop roof is up rather than down? Of course it cools when driving and doesn’t suffer in the winter sun or cloudy conditions, which seem to be most of the time in the UK anyway , Take a look at my review of a Portable Folding Solar Panel because, to be honest I think it’s a better solution for me and replacing a failing panel is a real bind http://richard.mackney.com/portable-folding-solar-panel-review/. 1 Best RV and Campervan Solar Panels – My Free Buyers Guide!. I think yours is 13w? I also keep the freeze box section full of ice packs to help. I have a Talbot camper from 1994. Will test out the things you suggested when I get home. When the roof is up and it’s North facing it suffers. This website uses cookies. This 150W high performance mono crystalline Flexible Solar Panel Campervan, Caravan & Motorhome Kit, is ideal for situations where you want the panel to follow the contours of the roof. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. I’ve read that solar panels fitted directly to the roof will suffer performance issues due to heat, have you had any problems with this? Use a semi-flexible solar panel to reduce weight and hide it away. I’m doing mine but need to understand how you ran the cables inside the poptop. It's possible to use solar energy for light, PC, TV and even a refrigerator may be powered via solar. If the cheap PWM does blow, you’ll loose all of your electrics. Home/Garden. Great article, it’s exactly same setup ( and roof) that I’ve got and same concerns, but appreciate if you could advise on the actual installation… Composite Thin Solar Panel Kit is ideal for converted vehicles with Pop Top roofs like VW T4/T5’s, Nissan NV200’s, and many more. Sorted. Firstly, the solar panel must be securely attached to the roof. I had planned to simply use the solar to aid the leisure battery and run a circuit for all my fridge/usb/lights etc from that but from what i understand this could also go directly from the PWM unit “light” connection. Do you know of any preference/reason for doing it either way. The pedant in me wants to point out that Watts, Amps, Volts are instant state measurements and not “per hour”; you’re fridge takes about 1A. Thanks again for really useful blog. Hi; Learn how your comment data is processed. 50 Watt Solar Panel Monocrystalline Flexible - JoaSinc Solar Panel Waterproof Bendable for Off Grid PV System on Motorhome, Campervan, Caravan, Camper, Truck, yacht or Boat 4.3 out of 5 … see all. Hi, did you use the solar panel cable to connect the controller with the battery? Overview. Solar Panels. Best Campervan Solar Panel Kits For Off-Grid Charging Devices. Semi-flexible solar panels are ideal for campervans with pop-top roofs and can dramatically increase your independence in the summer months, the panel will produce sufficient amps to run your fridge, lights and water pump without the need to plug into 230v mains power or drive the vehicle to recharge the leisure battery. I have a similar Reimo roof with the ridges. Still shows only around 60% . The leisure battery seems to be holding up! Application. Thanks for getting back to me. Aidan. However, I think the performance loss is about 10% and I’ve not noticed any problem personally. Also means once you’ve plugged something in you can’t monitor the battery level without unplugging again. Any ideas ? Hi Richard, I contacted the company and they sent a new panel free of charge. 1. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out. If it was on a tin roof I think it would be even worse. As it is a 2011 one and has the long wait for the VW roof treatment, I did not want to do anything that would give VW an excuse to walk away from my claim. Battery & Solar Charger Controller. These lessons go in order so I recommend starting from the top. We offer a range of solar panel kits for your campervan. Solar Panel Fitting for Motorhomes, Caravans and Campervans. The panel is supposed to give 5A per hour in sunlight but it seemed to do really well in heavy cloud last week. Have turned the fridge down a bit. Hope that helps. I arrived here as I’m looking to do something similar. A typical 14.72-volt solar panel has 32 solar cells. A solar charging system for your campervan will generally consist of three main elements: Solar Panel – traditionally roof mounted. I’ve been running a rigid frame 50W solar panel at home for a number of years to provide 12V lighting with the intention of using it on the caravan and then the campervan but I just couldn’t bring myself to mount such a big frame on the roof of a moving vehicle. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website. I have been working with Roger Donoghue at solar camper solution to fit a solar unit to my T5. Fitted a mppt controller to improve efficiency of unit and a remote control panel link to the mppt . Got a similar van and roof . Celina Dos Reis, Hey- Thanks for the write up, gave me confidence to follow suit. Hi Mark, It does cycle through the different connections to show the amps but I don’t believe it has any cut out. It provides an environmentally friendly source of electricity and is a good backup source of power for when you don’t have access to electric hook up. I will be doing the same soon. I mainly tour the UK so I don’t think I’ll have a problem , P.S check out the benefits of a Portable Folding Solar Panel: http://richard.mackney.com/portable-folding-solar-panel-review/ . 2. It does this in a millisecond, per hour, per day, it takes 1A current while it’s on. Chris, Hi Rich, Table of Contents. A solar panel works by capturing the energy coming from the sun and turning it into electricity that can then be used for your campervan. But I’ve got a couple of questions about your Bestek 12v adapter…. Hi Carl, a panel that heats up over the 25 ℃ STC rating suffers performance so in summer it would be better to have an air gap to help. Hi Stephen, it’s from http://www.poptoproofs.co.uk. Since installing a Biard 100W solar panel on the roof of the campervan, I’ve experienced the benefits of solar power while away with the family. To take account of the low light levels in winter you may need a 20W panel or more. Fitting a solar panel to your campervan’s roof: Fitting a solar panel is a job that most people with competent DIY skills can undertake. It only gives amps for the USB sockets (volts for lighter sockets) and it’s cumulative (ie. Connect them to the charge controller, then unfold the solar panels and carefully wire them to the DC input. These cookies will be stored in your browser only with your consent. Is this ok when travelling on the motorway? I have seen some wired externally and then drop in through the door grommets which in theory would still wear with movement but may have less worry about an internal fire. Do you think the rubber strips will be ok with the heat generated by the panel? Thanks. The dealer who sold us the campervan suggested that, as it was October/November time, there was very little sun, so the solar panel wouldn’t have much effect… I was disappointed. 1.1 Renogy 100 Watts 12 Volts Monocrystalline Solar Panel; 1.2 Renogy 100 Watts 12 Volts Monocrystalline Solar Panel (Inclusive of 30A PWM Charge Controller, 10AWG MC4 Adaptor Kit, 10AWG Tray Cable, and One Set of Mounting Brackets); 1.3 HQST 100 Watts 12 Volts Polycrystalline Off-Grid RV Solar … Ordered the glue to stick panel down but now don ’ t look as good i... The control unit is struggling to meet the demands of the low light levels in winter you may need 20W! Also raised with foam tape as per manufacturers instructions is still important in your browser with!, there are a couple of important points to outline before you get your toolbox out for! To improve your experience of the low light levels in winter you may need a 20W panel more. 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