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Old 07-18-2019, 07:58 AM   #1
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Wiring question

Hello,

I purchased my solar panel and controller separately. The question I have is, my camper has two 12v batteries with a battery selector switch. I was going to wire my controller into the battery selector switch at the output positive and common ground. If I am generating more power than I am using, would that charge the batteries selected? What is the best way to wire this up? If I wire my batteries in parallel before the switch then the switch become pointless. Is there any reason I would not want to run and charge both batteries?
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Old 07-18-2019, 08:07 AM   #2
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What's the purpose of having a switch? Are these both house batteries or is one for something else? If they're both good batteries, it sounds like running them parallel with the charge controller feeding the pair would be ideal.
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Old 07-18-2019, 08:19 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pktrusty View Post
Hello,

I purchased my solar panel and controller separately. The question I have is, my camper has two 12v batteries with a battery selector switch. I was going to wire my controller into the battery selector switch at the output positive and common ground. If I am generating more power than I am using, would that charge the batteries selected? What is the best way to wire this up? If I wire my batteries in parallel before the switch then the switch become pointless. Is there any reason I would not want to run and charge both batteries?

Are the batteries the same size? you only want to wire batteries of the exact same capacity and Type (Gel/Flooded/AGM/Lithium) in Parallel preferably exact same batteries purchased together or you will either undercharge one or overcharge the other



if you have 2 different capacity or type of batteries that would explain a selector switch
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Old 07-18-2019, 12:16 PM   #4
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They are the both sized batteries. I think the reason for the selector is to ensure they have enough power for the slide or what ever. I had been asking myself the same thing. I think I am going to wire them in parallel and replace the selector with a disconnect. I have a 100W panel. 100W to 12 V is about 8A. What type of circuit protection do you install? I was thinking a fuse between the controller and the batteries. Does anyone install a fuse between the panel and the controller or is there really no risk there?
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Old 07-18-2019, 02:20 PM   #5
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Fuse's protect the wire from overheating. Use a fuse between the controller and the battery, close to the battery, that will not melt the wire, if it shorts to ground.

The wire burning energy is in the battery. 12 gauge wire = about 20 amps.

Since the solar panel can NOT make more power the the wire it came with, no fuse is needed. A switch is handy to turn the panel off though. If you short the panel wires together, nothing burns up.

Once you go into multiple panels of 3 or more, then fuses can become important.

Its always better to run 2 batteries down together. That way you are not cycling them as deep as you would one. The more energy you pull from a battery, the less times it will recharge.
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Old 07-19-2019, 08:03 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by twinboat View Post
Fuse's protect the wire from overheating. Use a fuse between the controller and the battery, close to the battery, that will not melt the wire, if it shorts to ground.

The wire burning energy is in the battery. 12 gauge wire = about 20 amps.

Since the solar panel can NOT make more power the the wire it came with, no fuse is needed. A switch is handy to turn the panel off though. If you short the panel wires together, nothing burns up.

Once you go into multiple panels of 3 or more, then fuses can become important.

Its always better to run 2 batteries down together. That way you are not cycling them as deep as you would one. The more energy you pull from a battery, the less times it will recharge.

The Amperage a wire can Handle is entirely dependent on the length of the wire run and the voltage, 12 Gauge wire at 20 amps 12v DC will fry over time however it will handle 20 Amps at 120V in-definately , an 8 Gauge wire can handle 25 amps at 12 Volts on a 20 foot run However is rated for 50 amps @ 120v For a 50' or less run
There is also variance by wire quality, Type, and manufacture and Variation Based on Current Type AC/DC etc there is no True This size fits this amperage you have to take all factors into consideration but The Lower the Voltage and the longer the run the Thicker the wire you need to safely transmit the same Amperage
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Old 07-19-2019, 10:20 AM   #7
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Here is a wiring chart for 12v dc that I use..

Opts... wrong chart.
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Old 07-19-2019, 10:40 AM   #8
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Here is the 12v chart..
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