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Old 07-19-2019, 03:37 PM   #1
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Solar Wiring Problem

Have 2015 Glacier Peak with prewired (only) Zamp solar installed. Have ordered (2) Zamp rooftop solar panels along with a 30 amp Zamp controller which are planned to be connected directly to the prewired system. Basically supposed to a plug and play type setup.

From what I see, and have learned from discussions with Outdoor RV folks, is that the prewired system consist of a 3 port roof cap (I see that), a small 4 screw panel opening behind a Zamp sticker affixed above the bed where two small cabinet doors are located. Found that. From there you should be able to retrieve the wiring from the Battery (below) and the roof cap (above) to connect to the controller (which is supposed to be mounted where the Zamp sticker is located). Was able to get my hands on 2 (red/white) 8 ga dead end wires which, as best I can tell, are the battery connection cables. Think I verified that by locating (2) 8 ga wires (one red/one white) with a Zamp sticker on each that are already connected to the Battery bank. I could be wrong but don't think so.

What I cannot locate are the wires from the roof cap. The panel opening is very small and difficult to get your hand into to feel around. I also removed one roof cap port so I could see what that wiring looked like from the topside. It's red/blk and smaller, about 12 ga. I cannot find anything like that above the bed. Is it somewhere else? Where? Outdoor RV folks suggested using a coat hanger, that it should be up there. But they could/would not assure me of that! Coat hanger won't help! Apparently no drawings are available either.

Sorry for the length of this note but wanted to lay out the problem and what I understand so far about it. Any help/advice on where those 2 wires are located would be greatly appreciated. BTW off to AK soon so hope to resolve this before then.

George
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Old 07-19-2019, 04:12 PM   #2
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I went through this earlier this year. The wires from the combiner box will be in behind the ceiling access panel as suggested. What I would do, is remove your combiner box on the roof, double check the connections (issues posted on this site with faulty connections) someone on the roof, someone inside and slightly pull up and down on the wires from the combiner box, feel around and listen in the access panel, coat hanger etc whatever you can use, luckily mine where long, I ended cutting them back to shorten the run. If you see the wires running from the resettable breaker into your roof from the combiner box, the wires will be there...then reseal. Good luck.
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Old 07-19-2019, 06:13 PM   #3
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Doing a continuity test?

Brad, if he turned off the master switch so no power from the battery would be on the pair from the A-frame j box, couldnít he (after testing for no voltage on either wire) tie the r&w together and use a continuity tester to tone out the wires from the roof? I see two inputs per port up there, and assume one is pos and the other is neg. Toning the out would save cutting into the caulk up there.
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Old 07-19-2019, 06:14 PM   #4
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Thanks to all in advance. I finally located them. Had to remove the vent fan side cover shroud, and from there could reach further back and get my hand on them. All by feel. They were hung up, so kept gently pulling in/out until freed. Will still have to fish them forward to small panel opening where they were supposed to be, but at least I know they actually do exist!! Nightmare!
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Old 07-19-2019, 06:31 PM   #5
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Our GP with the Zamp solar box on the roof has the connectors and seals rotting away from the sun attack. The protective plug covers rotted off long ago. Junk if you ask me. Water intrusion is bound to follow shortly. I would find another way to terminate and route the solar connection thru the roof and toss the Zamp box.

I had to rebuild the little Zamp solar panel battery maintainer due to the failure of the SAE plug Zamp used. It rotted and rusted away in less than 3 years.

Others with the same have reported shorted and corroded connections inside this cover. And an under voltage Bussman breaker inside....A fire hazard as well. It was upgraded in late 2017, but many of us have the old one.
Here is a article about it: https://www.adventurousway.com/blog/...r-combiner-box Since I don't plan on solar on the roof, I am going to remove the combiner box and hang the wires inside the attic and then seal it off with tape and dicor. Problem solved.
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Old 07-19-2019, 07:42 PM   #6
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I did the solar thing a couple of years ago. On mine, the two wires from the batteries were laying loose up in the roof. No covers on the wire ends, and the wires were connected directly to the batteries!

I didn't use Zamp product. I used 4 Renogy 100W panels, and an EPEVER 30A MPPT Solar Charge Controller with a LCD Remote Display Meter.

I wanted the charge controller as close to the batteries as possible, so I mounted it in the front storage bay. It wasn't too tough to find the two wires running to the batteries and connect into them.

I mounted the LCD remote display meter beside the bed. It's fun to be able to monitor the status of our batteries from the comfort of our own bed!

Renogy supplies connectors that adapt to the Zamp box. I had to use a glue gun to keep the connectors from slipping out of the box.

The system has worked absolutely flawlessly.

Oh yes. One thing. Zamp wires their system backwards. Don't know why.

Jim
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Old 07-20-2019, 03:10 PM   #7
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Yea my roof connector caps are also rotting away. Just hope it still works when I plug in the panels. Suspect the unit will have to be replaced down the road.
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Old 07-20-2019, 03:13 PM   #8
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My understanding as to why Zamp wired the connectors backwards is to prevent a short. That's why the protruding "male" plug is a negative. If it touches anything it won't short out.
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Old 07-20-2019, 03:31 PM   #9
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Thanks for the heads up on the roof mount breaker issue. Read the article and can see that I will need to address that later. For now I'll use it but keep an eye on it until it gets changed out.
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Old 07-20-2019, 09:08 PM   #10
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Mine will be getting swapped out also, in the mean time slather the connections in dialectical grease.
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Old 07-20-2019, 10:19 PM   #11
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Tx! Will do.
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Old 07-21-2019, 07:41 PM   #12
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The dealer that installed my Solar bypassed the Zamp box on the roof and went right to the 30a controller they installed in the spot over the bed. One day sorta soon I will remove the unused Zamp and install a new combiner box with a 3rd panel and a circuit breaker type switch as a Clean-up-grade. I've not heard much good about the Zamp. The weather is having an affect on mine too. If I knew then what I know now, I'd of bought all this stuff myself and installed it for a better system.....................
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Old 07-21-2019, 11:18 PM   #13
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Yep! Live and learn. I figured that since a zamp prewired system was already installed I'd go with them ( solar panels/controller) to finished it out. Based on what I could feel and pull loose the wiring from the roof cap turned out to just barely reach the above bed panel where the controller would be mounted. I mean I had only an inch or so to hookup the roof cap wires to the controller. I will have to take it all apart later and redo. Funny because the battery connection leads had sufficient slack for connection to the controller, however, they never bothered to wrap the dead ends, but the battery was hooked up. Positive was hot. Just cut the wire ends, That was it! Potential fire hazard. Poor quality control/no inspection. Agree would have also done my own thing in hindsight.
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Old 07-24-2019, 09:55 PM   #14
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Glad to hear you found the wiring! I went through the same thing after purchasing out ‘15 GP in Oct of 2014. With help from Todd, I was finally able to locate the wiring from the rooftop combiner box, however, I never was able to find any wiring down to the batteries or the DC wire rats nest behind the battery shutoff switch in the basement storage area.

When I installed my 400w solar / 3000w inverter system the next spring I used my own combiner box mounted on the roof and ran the wiring down to the controller in the forward storage compartment along side a holding tank vent pipe that ended up behind the converter/AC DC breaker box in the hall across from the bathroom. Easy install with everything running along existing wire paths from there.

Although I also found a wiring issue with the factory installed 10w maintainer panel I am overall very happy and impressed with ORV and our GP. Only wish they still made the F30 GP, I’d buy it in an instant!

Safe travels!
Mike
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