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Old 02-25-2018, 01:26 PM   #1
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Location for solar panels on 3051 S Forester

I'm installing two 160 W solar panels on the roof of our motorhome. I wanted to know if there are recommendations and cautions you might have.

I would also like cable routing recommendations. It would be easier if I could pull the refrigerator, but that isn't a task I want to tackle. It looks like I can open the water heater panel and route between there and the door. Where id you route yours?

Also, the rig has an outlet that says solar ready. I assume that means you can plug in a solar panel sitting on the ground. Do you know if that has a voltage regulator in the circuit?
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Old 02-25-2018, 01:38 PM   #2
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Solar Ready is usually a marketing gimmick and just a wire to the battery with no regulator or charge controller.
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Old 02-25-2018, 01:39 PM   #3
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the FR features and specs and brochure only show and say 'ZampSolar' ready... which leads me to believe it's only 'pre wired', no controller, panels, etc.

but, I may also mention that since it reads 'use only Zamp portable solar charging systems', they may 'pre wire' already to the battery bank, allowing you to use the Zamp suitcase and similar systems, which already has it's own built-in controller and the 'plug and play' connector to the RV.
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Old 02-25-2018, 06:46 PM   #4
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Thanks, I found out it's wired for their suitcase style panel. Really no value. I wish they had a conduit from the roof to the control/battery area.

I installed the controller below the Lippert tablet and with only one hole, was able to get it wired to the battery. Now the hard part, getting from the roof to the controller.
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Old 02-25-2018, 06:59 PM   #5
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Keep posting, I have been contemplating doing exactly the same thing on my MH but havent had the courage to try it on my own. Love to hear how it works out.
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Old 02-25-2018, 09:49 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dougwollan View Post
Thanks, I found out it's wired for their suitcase style panel. Really no value. I wish they had a conduit from the roof to the control/battery area.

I installed the controller below the Lippert tablet and with only one hole, was able to get it wired to the battery. Now the hard part, getting from the roof to the controller.


Link Solar ASA Solar Double Cable Entry Gland Weatherproof + MC4 Solar Panel Assembly Tool,for Roof Mounted Solar Panel Motohome RV Camper https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077NYCHWJ..._Sv3KAbFGY58YH
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Old 02-25-2018, 09:50 PM   #7
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Donít forget to order self-leveling Dicor.
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Old 02-26-2018, 01:22 PM   #8
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On my old TT, I just used the opening for the refrig vent to the roof to run my two panel cables.. worked great.. And yes.. "solar ready" is a joke.. IMO. Remember to use large copper stranded wire (#10 or larger) from the controller to the batteries..
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Old 02-26-2018, 02:30 PM   #9
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Solar Panels

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Donít forget to order self-leveling Dicor.
You can order 4 tubes of Dicor for 27.88 on Amazon. They also have all the MC4 adapters and cables needed. You will probably run your panels in parallel so will need 2 two into one MC4 adapters for your cables. I only used 2 tubes of Dicor to seal all the way around 2 Flexible 100 Watt Panels and all associated cables and clamps. Good luck.
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Old 02-26-2018, 04:24 PM   #10
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Our solar panel is wired close to the fridge vent and the wires fun down behind it. Then they come out to the panel on the cabinet just beside the front door.


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Old 02-26-2018, 05:03 PM   #11
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roof solar

I also want to get solar for the roof. The problem I see is the roof is fiberglass. How do you attach the panels?
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Old 02-26-2018, 05:12 PM   #12
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I also want to get solar for the roof. The problem I see is the roof is fiberglass. How do you attach the panels?
Another easier option is to make the panel portable and have 20 ft cables(with connectors) and go thru your floor to a compartment.. I have had a panel on my old TT on the roof and 75% of the time I ended up camping under a tree, in the shade.. Now I just move the panel around on the ground a few times a day to catch the sun. Makes the system more efficient.
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Old 02-26-2018, 05:27 PM   #13
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I also want to get solar for the roof. The problem I see is the roof is fiberglass. How do you attach the panels?
You may want to do a search for "Ready for Solar, again!" in the forums. There is a lot of info on various mounting methods used on this thread. I did mine without any screws on the fiberglass roof and no issues in 2 years and still solid as a rock.
Good luck with the installs. Do your research and planning before you jump into it.
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Old 02-26-2018, 05:38 PM   #14
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I also want to get solar for the roof. The problem I see is the roof is fiberglass. How do you attach the panels?
I installed the 100W flexible panels with 3M extreme two sided tape and sealed around them with Dicor just like Dynamax does on theirs at the factory. Solid as a Rock after 2 years.
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Old 02-26-2018, 06:20 PM   #15
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I installed the 100W flexible panels with 3M extreme two sided tape and sealed around them with Dicor just like Dynamax does on theirs at the factory. Solid as a Rock after 2 years.


I also used 3M VHB and have no issues, either.
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Old 02-27-2018, 01:06 AM   #16
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Listen to HopHed a few posts up. I'm the OP for "Ready for Solar,again".
I routed easily down the fridge vent. I was lucky and could route the wiring along the side of the fridge and under the cabinets. I then fished the wiring under the raised floor in the rear of my MH to the controller located right next to the batteries.
Make sure you place your panels so that they are not shadowed by the roof vents and A/C during the day. Just a little shadow will prevent most of the panels output. I placed the panels on the roof for a few days to find the best locations. Also, I first used Stickyfeet mounts but added a drywall expander anchor to each for added measure. I took HopHed's advice and lightly sand the dimpled rood to provide a more flat surface for the Stickyfeet. When mounting my third panel, I made my own mounts 1" longer than the Stickyfeet and also used well nuts. I bought 3M VHB tape so mine are very similar to the Stickyfeet. I wanted to be able to remove the panels without too much trouble so they a 2 piece.
You are going to like the 300+ watts of output, but again beware of shadows killing the output. Good luck!
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Old 02-27-2018, 12:53 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by clintbonnie73 View Post
Another easier option is to make the panel portable and have 20 ft cables(with connectors) and go thru your floor to a compartment.. I have had a panel on my old TT on the roof and 75% of the time I ended up camping under a tree, in the shade.. Now I just move the panel around on the ground a few times a day to catch the sun. Makes the system more efficient.
Thanks, I do have a 40w portable one now and looking to add more.
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