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Old 04-27-2011, 12:13 AM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 6
Switch with solar panels

On the weekend I completed installation of two 125W solar panels on my 5th wheel. I had planned to include a switch in the cabling between the combo box on my roof and the controller, but when I went to pick it up at the local RV dealer, the guy I talked to said it can cause damage to the panels or controller to disconnect the power. This sounded strange to me, so I figured I'd just do the install and see how things go... installing the switch later if it seemed appropriate.

Having the solar running now for a few days, and only using the trailer every couple of weeks for the weekends mainly, I figure it might be best to not have the batteries charging all the time. I'd just switch it on the night before we go out so it tops up again during the next day. I'm hoping to get a few answers from the knowledgeable people here:
Thanks in advance for any help.


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Old 04-28-2011, 05:48 AM   #2
Site Team - Lou
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Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: South Eastern PA
Posts: 19,791

I also would like to add panels and was hoping someone would answer this thread. Perhaps a dedicated solar Forum might be the place to ask.

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Please come back and post what you find out.
I also hope you took pictures or your install!


Lou and Laura with Bella - German Short Hair Pointer
2008 GMC Sierra 2500HD Crewcab SB Allison Duramax
2010 Flagstaff 8526RLWS - Superglide 3300
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Old 04-28-2011, 09:29 AM   #3
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: We live in Rhode Island, but our hearts are in New Hampshire
Posts: 57
I am installing panels on my rig also. I had them on my last one. I just used the charge controller. It treated the charge much the same way as when you are plugged into shore power-charge, maintain,float. I felt that since I didn't have to disconnect my on-board charger when I was plugged in for a long time, then I shouldn't have to using my charge controller.
I had 4- 6 volt batteries and they did not "bubble out" any more than before without the panels.
I hope this helps a little bit. Good luck.
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