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Old 14-05-2017, 08:10   #1
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solar panels stopped working

My solar panels stopped working
my solar controller is showing nothing coming in. there is nothing on solar side of the panels and nothing in the junction box.
I don't think both panels will die at the same time.
any repair ideas.
is there a place I can get them fixed if they are down
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Old 14-05-2017, 08:20   #2
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Re: solar panels stopped working

Did you check the voltage right at one of the panels (where the wires connect on the back) with a meter?

Have you disconnected the load and measured the voltage?
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Old 14-05-2017, 08:27   #3
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Re: solar panels stopped working

I believe solar panels are a disposable item, when they fail you bin them. But yours sounds more like a wiring or controller issue.
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Old 14-05-2017, 10:42   #4
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Re: solar panels stopped working

yea
I just checked the plug at the panel (it was raining yesterday) and yest I was reading 18 v
so hopefully new plugs cheaper than new panels
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Old 15-05-2017, 03:13   #5
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Re: solar panels stopped working

Yep, sounds like the panel is okay.

It's the plug or wiring someplace between the panel and the controller ........ unless the load is totally pulling down the voltage.

Are the batteries reading about right?

We had a sunny day yesterday so I checked a spare 20 watt panel I had and it read 21.3 volts not connected to anything. It's max is 21.8
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Old 15-05-2017, 09:42   #6
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Re: solar panels stopped working

you guys are right it is the plug
is there a good water proof plug or should I hard wire them
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Old 15-05-2017, 10:40   #7
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Re: solar panels stopped working

Quote:
Originally Posted by seaman-lew View Post
you guys are right it is the plug
is there a good water proof plug or should I hard wire them
I soldered the wires on the back my panel.

I haven't been around any with plugs.
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Old 15-05-2017, 10:54   #8
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Re: solar panels stopped working

Mine are also hard wired, apart from the suitcase 60w panel which comes out when we stop so has a Bulgin connector to keep the water out.

Standard Series - Circular Power Connectors - Products | Bulgin
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Old 15-05-2017, 11:08   #9
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Re: solar panels stopped working

Quote:
Originally Posted by seaman-lew View Post
you guys are right it is the plug
is there a good water proof plug or should I hard wire them
The MC4 plug they come with should be waterproof, having said that I believe I will replace my plugs with heat shrink crimps, I suspicion I have a couple of high resistance connections, my bank isn't making what I think it should.

MC4 Solar connectors are all over Ebay for about a buck ea.
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Old 15-05-2017, 12:43   #10
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Re: solar panels stopped working

Check the fuse. There should be a fuse on the hot line going into the controller from the solar panels.
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Old 15-05-2017, 16:22   #11
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Re: solar panels stopped working

Funny coincidence. My charge controller showed LL.L yesterday. No voltage at the panel connection (correction, showed 1.45v). Open circuit between battery and panel negatives. Had a cup of coffee whilst contemplating the situation. Went back for another look and found all well. This morning still good.
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Old 15-05-2017, 23:37   #12
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Re: solar panels stopped working

Quote:
Originally Posted by CLady View Post
Check the fuse. There should be a fuse on the hot line going into the controller from the solar panels.
Rarely found and not needed. A fuse is needed in the positive line after the controller and close to the batteries.
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