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The Norfolk Broads Forum / Broads Boat Owners Q & A / starter battery solar panel advice
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Posted By Discussion Topic: starter battery solar panel advice

Similar Threads That Might Help :
Using Solar Panels to topp the batteries| Solar Panels| Solar Panels| Solar Panel fitting| Solar Panel fitting|

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ADI
Apr-14-2013 @ 10:03 PM                           Permalink
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hi guys

i am thinking of getting something like this solar panel to hook up to my starter battery when not onboard, the boat has a panel fitted for the domestics and they are always topped up and show higher voltage than the starter battery, so would this be ok for what I'm looking for?

Thanks in advance.

Regards

Adrian, Michelle, Beck and Braydon,
the crew of FERZAN.

londonrascal
Apr-14-2013 @ 10:35 PM                           Permalink
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It is I am sure okay, 4watt is under ideal conditions and is not water proof so would need to sit int he window - something like this - a bit more money - 10w and waterproof.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B002JCXSAG

However event this in reviews will not keep the battery going through the winter.  

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rustic
Apr-15-2013 @ 2:39 AM                           Permalink
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Robin has found a little cracker with the Amazon unit.
A good price for this size.

As long as there is no current drain from the starter battery, like memory for a radio, alarm, etc, then this unit in my opinion will certainly provide enough power to overcome the natural self discharge of the main starter battery.

The location and angle to the sun  is critical in obtaining the best efficiency, South facing at an angle of approx 45 degrees will probably work best with no shadows.

You shouldn't need a voltage regulator for one unit for batteries above say 80 Ah.

If you want to increase the output, the information in the description is misleading, it states putting them in series, 2 in series will be ok in 24 volt battery applications, but for 12 volt systems then you would wire them in parallel for more charging current.

If you do use two or more 10 watt panels, then I would suggest using a suitable regulator to prevent over charging the battery and gassing thus water loss.

You could also use another unit for the domestic batteries too.

I have 3 similar panels with regulator which I use to keep 2 x 90 Ah batteries charged.  This overcomes the self discharge, and also helps to charge the battery to full capacity. There is enough to fully charge the batteries if partially discharged to say 80% of capacity.

Note:
One panel would not be suitable to charge a partially discharged battery like a domestic battery say discharged to 50 % between uses. The reason being that the battery needs to be maintained to at least 80% of charge otherwise sulphation of the battery will occur if the battery is left for great length of time in a partially discharged state.

For a starter battery, which is normally close to fully charged the panel should work fine in my opinion.




best regards, Richard.
I can't wait to be back on our boat on
the Broads.

waterbuoy
Apr-15-2013 @ 12:21 PM                           Permalink
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ADI,
You could try the setup that I have on my boat.

This is a trickle-charge unit. It kicks in when it spots a difference in the voltage between the domestic batteries and the starter battery. When the starter battery voltage is lower than the domestics, then a current of up to 1amp (12W) flows from the solar panel charged domestics to the starter battery. There is an indicator on the unit that tells you that current is flowing, too.

E848 12v 1amp (Euro) top-up battery charger.

Top Up Charger

Edited to add URL for supplier sales point
EBAY

Hope this is of use.



Clive

Home - IP11 & Away - NR12



This message was edited by waterbuoy on Apr-15-13 @ 12:35 PM

ADI
Apr-15-2013 @ 8:22 PM                           Permalink
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Thanks for the input guys, i like the sound of the 'top up charger' i guess this would kick in quite regular with the domestics been constantly topped up with the solar panel?

Regards

Adrian, Michelle, Beck and Braydon,
the crew of FERZAN.

ADI
Apr-17-2013 @ 8:19 PM                           Permalink
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hi Clive i've been keeping up with your 'charge lamp flashes' thread and was wondering if your system would still be ok for my setup? anyone elses input would be appreciated

Regards

Adrian, Michelle, Beck and Braydon,
the crew of FERZAN.

ncsl
Apr-17-2013 @ 10:12 PM                           Permalink
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I have been using one of that type for 7 years. No problems at all.

If you want a bit more info on solar panels / charging etc then you can check on one of my solar site
Info about charging is there as well.


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waterbuoy
Apr-17-2013 @ 11:36 PM                           Permalink
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ADI,
I am sure you will be OK with the top-up charger unit I described.

I don't think the problems I describe in the "flashing charge lamp" thread is anything to do with the top-up charger. That problem is to do with using two charging systems to do the charging, as pointed out by Rustic and BuffaloBill.
Regards

Clive

Home - IP11 & Away - NR12


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