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Old 10-11-2016, 11:11   #1
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Marine Solar for Dummies - HELP

Hey - moving aboard a boat and I need to install Solar/Batteries/Etc.

I have been doing some research and not finding a lot of information that I need. Any links to good threads or good articles on this? Basics would be nice. I need complete Marine Solar for dummies.
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Old 10-11-2016, 11:23   #2
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Re: Marine Solar for Dummies - HELP

First off, you need to add up what your use is going to be. How many amp hours you will use per day. Think about everything that requires energy and add it up. Then you buy the battery bank that works for you. For starting I would think agm 12v would work great. Then comes the solar array that will charge the batteries from half dead to fully charged in 4-6 hours. Mppt charger and your done.
Well at least you have a start. Then comes install and the works.
Have a couple thousand saved I hope?
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Old 10-11-2016, 11:43   #3
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Re: Marine Solar for Dummies - HELP

Quote:
Originally Posted by PsychedChicken View Post
Hey - moving aboard a boat and I need to install Solar/Batteries/Etc.

I have been doing some research and not finding a lot of information that I need. Any links to good threads or good articles on this? Basics would be nice. I need complete Marine Solar for dummies.
You, my friend, have not searched enough because this has been covered a million times here on this forum. It isn't in one post and you're unlikely to get someone to spoon feed it to you now.

Here is how I like to search. In the Google search bar type site:cruisersforum.com then what you are searching for. It searches only this forum for that topic. Works pretty well.

I think you should buy a book. I think the following from Nigel Calder touches on everything you need. Learn these basis then come back here for specific questions.

https://www.amazon.com/Boatowners-Mechanical-Electrical-Manual-Calder-ebook/dp/B0147TM944/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1478806724&sr=8-2&keywords=sailing+manual+electric#reader_B0147TM9 44

That said, you need to break down your quest in to smaller chunks. Each one of these could fill (and have filled) dozens of pages on this forum.

- General knowledge of batteries as 12 volt systems, including knowledge of basic terms like volts, amps, amp hours and general wiring.

- Estimation of how many amp hours will be consumed on the boat each day.

- Based on the above estimation, you can determine the amp hour capacity of the battery bank you need.

- Once you know how much capacity you need, then you pick your batteries.

- Knowing how many amp hours are consumed each day will give you how much charging ability you require. How much charging you will require will provide you with how many watts of solar panels you need, once factoring in other charging sources.

- Buy a solar controller that fits your specific panels to your specific battery bank.

This is a lot of stuff. If you don't want to put in the above effort, considering hiring a professional.
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