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Old 03-13-2019, 01:12 PM   #1
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04 Beaver can I just add a solar panel?

Right now the set up is in stock configuration as built in 2004 with a single solar panel. It seems to work ok according to the gauge but do being in the north with limited sunlight on the occasion when I can not hook up for a few days I find the batteries get depleted too much with just the refer on. I think a little added solar would maintain it for what we use.

Can I just add a panel to this set up with out changing any of the controls etc?
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Old 03-13-2019, 01:18 PM   #2
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Probably so, but depends on the rest of your equipment - Will the wiring handle more power - and will the solar conreoller as well ?


If I had to guess you have a 30 amp controller like mine ...
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Old 03-13-2019, 01:36 PM   #3
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Probably so, but depends on the rest of your equipment - Will the wiring handle more power - and will the solar conreoller as well ?


If I had to guess you have a 30 amp controller like mine ...
I wish I knew the coach is currently in Fl I am n NY so can not check it. If it is the same is the 30 amp enough? Thanks
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Old 03-13-2019, 02:12 PM   #4
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It depends how much charging you need and how much you want to spend.



My coach originally came with a 85 panel, PO added 2-125 watt panels so I have 335 watt. On a sunny day I see ~16 amp of charging. The specs on the 125 watt panel says ~7 amp so I could probably add 2 more panels.



You need to find he make/model of your controller to confirm.
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Old 03-13-2019, 04:56 PM   #5
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My 04 Dynasty, much the same as your 04 Beaver had a 30 amp controller so adding a couple 100W panels (9 amps) will not overload it.
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Old 03-13-2019, 06:56 PM   #6
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Thanks for the reply's. When I am at the coach again I will get the info on the controller. Assuming it is larger enough to handle another panel how does it get wired in?

As to how much I need. My only need on the solar is for the occasional times I am with out power for three or more days. I only run the frig which has been converted to a JR refrigeration residential compressor it also has a continuous fan running in the frig. I find after three days the batteries are fairly depleted. They are new batteries also. I am thinking it is right on the edge of being able to carry the load so would not seem I need a lot more.
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Old 03-13-2019, 07:03 PM   #7
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Not sure how your coach was wired.

On mine, under the refrigerator vent hood, Monaco installed a junction box that could accommodate multiple solar panels. When I was having trouble with my system I checked it and it was pretty well corroded so I replaced.

Follow the wires from your solar panel and you may find the same thing.
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Old 03-13-2019, 07:12 PM   #8
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Not sure how your coach was wired.

On mine, under the refrigerator vent hood, Monaco installed a junction box that could accommodate multiple solar panels. When I was having trouble with my system I checked it and it was pretty well corroded so I replaced.

Follow the wires from your solar panel and you may find the same thing.
I'll try that. I was kid of hoping there was a way to wire an extra one right through the existing one in some kind of exterior junction box. Wish full thinking....lol.

Thank you.
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Old 03-13-2019, 07:24 PM   #9
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My 04 Dynasty had a junction box under the refrigerator roof vent cover...multiple screw connections for the + and - leads from the solar panel. Had to drill holes into it for the additional leads...pretty simple.
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Old 03-13-2019, 07:32 PM   #10
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My '06 Patriot Thunder had a Heliotrope that had failed. Heliotrope is out of business but there are lots of inexpensive charging controllers around now if you need a new one.
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Old 03-13-2019, 09:12 PM   #11
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ON the newer panels, you can wire them in series on the roof, but not always the proper way to get the most out of them....
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Old 03-14-2019, 05:10 AM   #12
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Please update on what you find. I was wondering the same thing and I bet ours are very similar. I get to pick mine up today finally.
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:38 AM   #13
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Please update on what you find. I was wondering the same thing and I bet ours are very similar. I get to pick mine up today finally.
We head down to Fl next weekend for a quick 4 day get away I will look at it then and post back.
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:54 AM   #14
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ON the newer panels, you can wire them in series on the roof, but not always the proper way to get the most out of them....
I think you need to wire in "parallel" so the voltage remains the same and only the amperage increases.

On the Heliotrope, it shows one connection for the solar panels, so as long as the wire size coming from the roof panel is large enough (and it should be), you can make you connections on the roof (tying into existing wires on the panel).
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