First and for all: We (the wife and me) have been reading a LOT on this forum and elsewhere on the subject of solar
energy. We're both university graduates, but there's just too much information out there for us to come to a decision regarding our particular solar purchase
We've been hit with terminology such as diodes, MPPT
, series, parallel, mono, poly, MC4, sunpower, etc... All of it completely new to us. We just know we want as much as green power as possible.
Therefore, we would like some specific advice from you guys for our specific situation. We know a lot of information can be found elsewhere, but we're just a bit overwhelmed right now (also a lot of other works on the boat
going on such as wind generator
, replacing rudder
bearings, re-doing the floor etc etc). So please don't shoot us for asking about things which can probably be found elsewhere...
We have a Beneteau
411 and currently a custom tailored arch is being manufactured by a local stainless steel
magician in Cap d'Agde, France
(you don't want to know how long we've been searching for a guy like this)
The arch will be finished next week, and therefore we need to decide on which solar panels
to buy SOON since our guy will be making a custom frame for them:-)
We have following available space on top of the arch:
BxL = 1,20m x 2,80m = 47,2 inches x 110,2 inches
Of course we would like to maximize the amount of watts, therefore we might deviate a bit on the available space, but for sure a solar panel of 1,44m would be too big (would interfere with the bimini
, which we like to take away at times). BTW: What's better: more watts with lower efficiency or less watts with higher efficiency rating ?
I've only read good thing about high efficiency sunpower cells so we decided to search these panels
. We found these (german made) panels
with sunpower cells:
these to France
would be very cheap
Do you think these are a bit too pricey ? Would these (https://www.offgridtec.com/en/genera...panel-12v.html
) comparable panels -without sunpower cells but a lot cheaper- be almost as good ? Specs seem to be the same almost?
We're doubting between 4 or 5 of either of these panels. So far, so good. But then our hell starts: Which MPPT
to buy and where to place it since it seems to produce a lot of heat ? Does every MPPT has two outputs ? One for housebank and one for start battery
? Is this needed? How to wire the panels (serie, parallel..), what is a diode and where to place it, do we need it at all?, which wires to use and how thick should they be, also keeping insurance
in mind (we read about "marine grade" but not clear what this is), what fuse do we need for this setup (60 amps?) and where to place it, which inverter
would be sufficient etc etc.
If ANYBODY has a better suggestion (completely different panels or whatever), please: tell us ! The offgridtec panels seem to have a lot of white spots -> unused cell space ??
We currently have a housebank of 4 x 110 Ah and a start battery
of 100 Ah.
In the future we will probably expand this capacity.
We have a 12 volt watermaker
which I'd like to run every two days and plan to install a microwave and an SSB
which will consume a lot.
Sorry for our stupid questions guys, but we're in way over our heads here and are unable to find a local guy giving us some simple and clear advice :-(
If anybody could give us a A-Z complete system advice, this would be greatly appreciated and obviously rewarded with lots of belgian beers ! :-)
PS our budget
is maximum 1500 euros (1600 USD)
Thanks a lot !