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The Norfolk Broads Forum / Broads Boat Owners Q & A / Solar Charge Controllers
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Posted By Discussion Topic: Solar Charge Controllers

Similar Threads That Might Help :
solar battery charging| Controller| Solar Panels| Solar Panels| Solar Ventilators| Solar Panel fitting|

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waterline
Nov-09-2018 @ 11:51 AM                           Permalink
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I have a centre wheelhouse all steel motor cruiser. Two years ago I fitted a solar panel, which is working fine. This year I started getting very bad interference on my radios. I found by taking out the fuse in the wiring from the controller to the batteries the interference stopped. If the wiring from the panel to the controller is disconnected the interference stops. The company that supplied the controller has changed it twice, but the problem persists. I have tried chokes, capacitors and even made a faraday cage.
I still think it is the controller, an EPSolar,
Has anyone any experience of these or do I need to buy a different make?
The interference affects the whole of interior of the boat, but as soon as I take my handheld VHF outside it works perfectly.

Tim
Nov-09-2018 @ 11:58 AM                           Permalink
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Many Thanks Tim

annville
Nov-10-2018 @ 9:07 AM                           Permalink
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Hi Is the aerial earthed to body of boat and greased to stop rust and are your batteries neg terminal also earthed to a common earthing point along with shore power earth with a galvanic switch between shore power earth and boat earth, i know it seems wrong mixing 240 and 12 volt but that's what the experts require. john

waterline
Nov-11-2018 @ 8:54 AM                           Permalink
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Hi Bill. I do not use shore power plus the interference affects my ordinary portable radio, my fixed (car) radio as well as the vhf radios. All earths have been cleaned and checked.
I am coming to the conclusion that this particular make of  mppt controller is the problem as all three tried have not cured the fault.


Roger

annville
Nov-11-2018 @ 10:41 AM                           Permalink
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Hi Rodger It certainly look like the controler, most unusual but ! try ringing Paul at Solar Energy in Lowestoft  01502515532 he fits solar panels to boats and may be able to help/lend/sell a suitable controller. John

woodwose
Nov-11-2018 @ 10:01 PM                           Permalink
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As with aerials, dealing with Radio Frequency Interference (RFI) is another closely related branch of the dark arts. There are usually no simple answers.

RFI gets into radios in 2 different ways:
1. Via the power wiring
2. Via the aerial

It sounds like the power wiring to the radio can be ruled out as the problem affects all radios. However, the power wiring to the controller both in and out can still be the radiator that is sending out the noise.
The source of the interference is almost certainly the controller which is likely to have components which send out pulses of power. These will be square waves rich in harmonics some of which fall in the VHF band.

I agree that the controller should not be putting out this level of noise but given that it is then it may be possible to keep the noise inside the box.

I am guessing that the wiring to the controller is the aerial which is transmitting the interference. I would suggest twisting the input wires together and also twisting the output wires together. (Don't twist the input and output together). In addition to twisting the wires, I would also wind the twisted pairs through ferrite rings placed as close as possible to the place they enter the controller box.

You say you have tried a Faraday Cage round the controller. How was this constructed?

There are rules about how much RFI any device can emit and it sounds like the controller is exceeding these limits. If so, you are entitled to your money back and you could get one from another supplier which is more compliant with the regulations.

Hope this helps

Nigel
Ludham


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