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Old 10-05-2010, 08:12   #1
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Several Solar Panels

Several solar panels.
Hi Everyone I have a question regarding hooking up 2 solar panels in parallel l but of different size.
I have had 2) 48 watt in parallel for years and began experiencing problems. After looking at the 2 solar panels one was brownish colour and the terminations seem to be washing out so I suspected this panel, I happened to pick up a second replacement panel in a garage sale looked good bluish colour
I removed the old and ck the volts and it was at 17.2 volts I compared to the replacement which was at 16.7 volts but was exposed to sun only about 10 min. I installed and noticed it was 45 watt and not 48 watt like the other unit. When all installed I noticed my volte meter near the Auto Seq. Charger was still at 0 like before, (it would normally work till it got hot outside then go to zero) then I thought it might be a broken wire but continued to ck further when I removed the wire from the array and checked the voltage we were at 17 + volts when I hooked back up voltage dropped to 0 so I concluded that the fault is in the MPP controller a short when it gets hot, so I am going to replace. The original question that I had is there a problem hooking Solar panels of different sizes like 48Watt and 45 Watt. I always get confused when I get into having different equipment charging the same battery eg solar panel could be charging at same time as alternator or Inverter charger do they clash or do they all contribute to the sum of charge do we need diodes to prevent one back feeding etc.
Any enlightenment for laymen would be appreciated, Thanks Serge
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Old 16-05-2010, 16:02   #2
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A 48 and 45 watt shouldn't be that much of a difference. Even if the panels were identical in pure sunlight, it's entirely probable that one of them will have a bit of a shadow on them in use and you'll end up a little lopsided.

But in general, you want to use panels of the same model / power output hooked up to a single controller. 6 panels of three different models (2 each), would yield you three different controllers.
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Old 16-05-2010, 16:09   #3
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rebel heart has it right;no problem.
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Old 16-05-2010, 18:35   #4
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Serge-
"The original question that I had is there a problem hooking Solar panels of different sizes like 48Watt and 45 Watt. "
Those are NOMINAL RATINGS and you will find that panels may vary plus or minus 10% from the nominal rating, so the panels you have are for all means indentical. Just hook them up to a good controller and use them.
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Old 17-05-2010, 20:40   #5
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Thanks gentelmen!
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