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Old 11-10-2017, 19:46   #16
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Re: Solar ON/OFF switch for 60volt system?

One more thought:

For most cruiser type solar arrays up to 600 watts or so you will be much better off wiring your panels in parallel with the system at ~20 volts.

With larger panel arrays, series configurations and the resulting higher voltages do allow for smaller gauge wiring, with the drawback being the switching and safety problems already discussed.

I would suggest that such systems be designed and installed by qualified solar techs.
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Old 11-10-2017, 19:49   #17
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Re: Solar ON/OFF switch for 60volt system?

Throw a blanket over the panels, the output will go to zero
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Old 11-10-2017, 20:02   #18
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Re: Solar ON/OFF switch for 60volt system?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ccannan View Post
Use an appropriately rated CB instead of a switch.
https://www.bluesea.com/products/723...ouble_Pole_10A
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Old 11-10-2017, 20:08   #19
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Re: Solar ON/OFF switch for 60volt system?

There is a difference between disconnecting an appliance (load) and disconnecting a power supply (solar controller) charging a battery. When you open a disconnect under load there will be a voltage spike. For a load fed from batteries the batteries act as a giant surge arrester. When you disconnect an operating solar controller you're disconnecting from that surge arrester. That means the surge has to be clamped in the controller. And that comes down to controller design. The effect is very similar to disconnecting your alternator under load - the collapsing field can destroy the diodes, but there are designs that can help prevent this.

Inverters are actually prone to failure in the same manner. I've seen a large number of inverter failures that were the result of circuit protection opening on the inverter's load side. If the circuit protection opens it usually means the inverter is at or near capacity, and the resulting surge can destroy the electronics. Again, all comes down to design.

Bottom line, nothing likes being disconnected under load, so if you can remove the load first it is always(?) better. Same reason we generally drop engines down to idle before shifting - sure you can do it at speed, but it's not good for any of the components. With solar that's actually pretty easy - throw a blanket over the panels (even just a section of each panel) or use the 'stop' function built into the controller. Once you've removed the current from an electrical system the voltage really isn't too critical. But proper design calls for a rating that can handle a loaded disconnect because you never know when someone isn't going to operate things properly.
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Old 12-10-2017, 17:31   #20
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Solar ON/OFF switch for 60volt system?

Go by total wattage or just use a plug as a means of disconnect.
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