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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > More on solar panels.
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Thread: More on solar panels. Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
04-04-2008 08:58 AM
sonofasonofasailer456
cheap panel

northern tool has a 15w solar panel for $79.00 order catalog and check them out , also for anyone looking for wind generator cheap same place $800.00
04-01-2008 01:37 AM
seanseamour
window solar panels

Quote:
Originally Posted by chucklesR View Post
I couldn't find these panels - do you have a link?
just add 3w's followed by dot com to asola-power then go to automotive USP's
fair winds, seanseamour
03-31-2008 10:21 PM
camaraderie You're most welcome Monk! HS is the worlds foremost authority on solar panels and charging systems...especially stik mounted ones! (inside joke)
03-31-2008 05:53 PM
ScuzzMonkey
Quote:
Originally Posted by camaraderie View Post
To maybe put it a bit more simply...even if your batteries are discharged to 12.25V (50%) and your 2W panels tries to deliver current at 12.5V...it will only develope less than .2 amps. Given a 5 hour direct sunlight equivilent...this means that over a day..less than one amphour will be stored in your battery. If the bilge pump kicks on, or your radio memory or TV standby function is on you will probably use more than this...hence the lower readings at night. Furthermore...on a 200 amp bank of wet cells..the self discharge rate can easily be in excess of 2 amps per day.
So...briefly...a 2 watt panel is a waste of time and money. Try 20 watts!
Cam and Hellosailor...

Thank you both, I think you've answered my question (surely a rarity in this thread and therefore worthy of recognition!)
03-31-2008 02:51 PM
Edgeaholic If you are looking for a good price on solar panels. outpost.com has really good prices on some of the larger solar panels.

SE-6000 100W panels for 699.99

Last time I looked, West Marine, was selling them for significantly more money.

Just thought you might want to know...
03-31-2008 01:07 PM
hellosailor AGMs. I don' t know the numbers for how long that float takes to equalize, but the nice folks at JCI do answer the phones....
03-31-2008 12:57 PM
chucklesR It's not a wet cell bank, Optima's are gell AGM's. My question is answered. I knew it was false, just not how much it would take to clear it.
03-31-2008 12:44 PM
hellosailor Removing the surface charge is typically done on a car by leaving the headlamps (10A load) on for 3-5 minutes. A larger boat battery will need a larger load, but just hitting everything on the panel for 5 minutes should do it.

Then you still have a false surface depletion voltage showing.

It can take 24 hours for the electrolyte to circulate (remember, there's no pump in there) and even out the charge in a wet cell. A false high voltage will show for at least that long.

12.6-12.8 volts is the maximum any nominal 12v lead-acid battery will ever charge up to, because of the chemistry of the battery. (Which varies a bit from brand to brand.) Anything over 12.8 is an illusion from surface charge, and every battery maker will tell you the same thing. That's also why their warranty test consists of using a LOAD TESTER that pulls high power form the battery--and not doing a simple voltage test. You'll find load testers on sale for $25-100 in "automotive" and "truck" sizes. They'll pull a thousand watts from the battery, emulating a starter motor's load.
03-31-2008 12:33 PM
chucklesR
Quote:
Originally Posted by camaraderie View Post
Chuck...
"I don't gete that every thing out there says 12.6v is the max. I've seen 13.9 on my monitor - with a load being drawn. I do know about overcharge and equalization - mine is disabled. I also know you can have a higher voltage showing - and it's a 'flash' voltage, not real, and it's supposed to drop as soon as you put a load on. My batteries stay over 13v for hours at a time."

By 12.6V...I assume you are commenting on the voltage of a fully charged 12V battery at rest. I believe this is really 12.66V but close enough for government work. You can ABSOLUTELY get voltage readings of higher than 12.6 volts on a recently charged battery and it can take from 12 to 48 hours for readings to fully drop back to 12.6V. This is called a surface charge and reflects additional electrical charge stored temporarlily on the batteries positive plate after charging and does not reflect the actual storage capacity of the battery.

Removal of the surface charge is necessary to check a batteries natural standing voltage. For a 100 amp battery...you can accomplish this with a 25 amp load for 30 seconds. (Extend the time or increase the amp load for larger banks.) Small house loads will not do the job of dropping the Voltage back quickly. Hope this clarifies the issue.


Absolutely, couldn't remember the term 'surface charge' (I said 'flash').
I didn't realize it needed to be hit that hard to flush it. I'll flip on the windlass next time, run some chain down and up for 30 and see what it says then.
Thanks.
03-31-2008 12:27 PM
camaraderie Chuck...
"I don't gete that every thing out there says 12.6v is the max. I've seen 13.9 on my monitor - with a load being drawn. I do know about overcharge and equalization - mine is disabled. I also know you can have a higher voltage showing - and it's a 'flash' voltage, not real, and it's supposed to drop as soon as you put a load on. My batteries stay over 13v for hours at a time."

By 12.6V...I assume you are commenting on the voltage of a fully charged 12V battery at rest. I believe this is really 12.66V but close enough for government work. You can ABSOLUTELY get voltage readings of higher than 12.6 volts on a recently charged battery and it can take from 12 to 48 hours for readings to fully drop back to 12.6V. This is called a surface charge and reflects additional electrical charge stored temporarlily on the batteries positive plate after charging and does not reflect the actual storage capacity of the battery.

Removal of the surface charge is necessary to check a batteries natural standing voltage. For a 100 amp battery...you can accomplish this with a 25 amp load for 30 seconds. (Extend the time or increase the amp load for larger banks.) Small house loads will not do the job of dropping the Voltage back quickly. Hope this clarifies the issue.


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