Solar Panel Wiring Choices - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 05-14-2013, 08:21 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Jon Vermilye View Post
Article 551.

Thank you.
I'm not doubting the existence, but I believe there's more to the statement than just below 50 Volts and 12 awg.
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Old 05-14-2013, 09:17 PM   #30
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Geez guys slow down. Tag up, only two in the ring. No moonsaults off the top rope.

jack
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Old 05-14-2013, 09:23 PM   #31
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Thank you again. That was very informative.

After spending a good hour sifting through Article 551 I could find only one reference to low voltage systems. Here's the quote:

(E) Overcurrent Protection Overcurrent Protection.
(1) Rating. Low-voltage circuit wiring shall be protected by overcurrent protective devices rated not in excess of the ampacity of copper conductors, in accordance with Table 552.10(E)(1).

Here's the link to where it starts. http://freenec.com/T464.html.
Note they are called "Park Trailers" There's lots of information about the 120 Volt system and bonding (grounding)

Here's an interesting paragraph about batteries..

(D) Battery Installations. Storage batteries subject to the provisions of this Code shall be securely attached to the unit and installed in an area vaportight to the interior and ventilated directly to the exterior of the unit. Where batteries are installed in a compartment, the compartment shall be ventilated with openings having a minimum area of 1100 mm2 (1.7 in.[[2]]) at both the top and at the bottom. Where compartment doors are equipped for ventilation, the openings shall be within 50 mm (2 in.) of the top and bottom. Batteries shall not be installed in a compartment containing sparkor flame-producing equipment.

I think maybe Chandler should read this.

Jon,
Could you provide the paragraph number that contains the less than 50 volt statement.

Thanks
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Old 05-14-2013, 09:24 PM   #32
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Sorry it took a bit.

90.2 Scope.
(A) Covered. This Code covers the installation of electrical conductors, equipment, and raceways; signaling and communications conductors, equipment, and raceways; and optical fiber cables and raceways for the following:
Public and private premises, including buildings, structures, mobile homes, recreational vehicles, and floating buildings

551 addresses AC systems in RV's and parks, however, it also addresses "mixed" systems, such as the 12v/120v appliances and ac/dc converters in RV's.

ARTICLE 720
Circuits and Equipment Operating at Less Than 50 Volts

720.4 Conductors. Conductors shall not be smaller than 12 AWG copper or equivalent. ...

I don't want to quote any more sections, they might charge me more.
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Old 05-14-2013, 09:26 PM   #33
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I think we were typing at the same time, Byron.
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Old 05-14-2013, 09:29 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rabbit View Post
Geez guys slow down. Tag up, only two in the ring. No moonsaults off the top rope.

jack
Easy Jack.
From my point of view I'm trying to gain a bit knowledge. When things that don't seem right are quoted without the actual quote or at least a link we have no idea what was really written. This almost always true of regulations. Then there's the interpretation, which can be a stickler. So if there is such a thing as minimum 12 awg low voltage wire size then we and the manufactures should know about it. Therefore verification is essential. No flames, no finger pointing, no name calling, just the facts.
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Old 05-14-2013, 09:45 PM   #35
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Kevin, Does the whole of the NEC apply to travel trailers. I don't think so since they list trailers under "Park Trailers"
Here's what they say about "Part Trailers" under low voltage systems.

I. General
552.1 Scope. The provisions of this article cover the electrical conductors and equipment installed within or on park trailers not covered fully under Articles 550 and 551.
552.2 Definition. (See Articles 100, 550, and 551 for additional definitions.)
Park Trailer. A unit that is built on a single chassis mounted on wheels and has a gross trailer area not exceeding 37 m2 (400 ft[[2]]) in the set-up mode.
552.3 Other Articles. Wherever the provisions of other articles and Article 552 differ, the provisions of Article 552 shall apply.
552.4 General Requirements. A park trailer as specified in 552.2 is intended for seasonal use. It is not intended as a permanent dwelling unit or for commercial uses such as banks, clinics, offices, or similar.
II. Low-Voltage Systems
552.10 Low-Voltage Systems .10 Low-Voltage Systems.
(A) Low-Voltage Circuits. Low-voltage circuits furnished and installed by the park trailer manufacturer, other than those related to braking, are subject to this Code. Circuits supplying lights subject to federal or state regulations shall comply with applicable government regulations and this Code.
( Low-Voltage Wiring Low-Voltage Wiring.
(1) Material. Copper conductors shall be used for lowvoltage circuits.
Exception: A metal chassis or frame shall be permitted as the return path to the source of supply.
(2) Conductor Types. Conductors shall conform to the requirements for Type GXL, HDT, SGT, SGR, or Type SXL or shall have insulation in accordance with Table 310.13(A) or the equivalent. Conductor sizes 6 AWG through 18 AWG or SAE shall be listed. Single-wire, low-voltage conductors shall be of the stranded type.
FPN: See SAE Standard J1128-1995 for Types GXL, HDT, and SXL and SAE Standard J1127-1995 for Types SGT and SGR.
(3) Marking. All insulated low-voltage conductors shall be surface marked at intervals not greater than 1.2 m (4 ft) as follows:
(1) Listed conductors shall be marked as required by the listing agency.
(2) SAE conductors shall be marked with the name or logo of the manufacturer, specification designation, and wire gauge.
(3) Other conductors shall be marked with the name or logo of the manufacturer, temperature rating, wire gauge, conductor material, and insulation thickness.
(C) Low-Voltage Wiring Methods Low-Voltage Wiring Methods.
(1) Physical Protection. Conductors shall be protected against physical damage and shall be secured. Where insulated conductors are clamped to the structure, the conductor insulation shall be supplemented by an additional wrap or layer of equivalent material, except that jacketed cables shall not be required to be so protected. Wiring shall be routed away from sharp edges, moving parts, or heat sources.
(2) Splices. Conductors shall be spliced or joined with splicing devices that provide a secure connection or by brazing, welding, or soldering with a fusible metal or alloy. Soldered splices shall first be spliced or joined to be mechanically and electrically secure without solder, and then soldered. All splices, joints, and free ends of conductors shall be covered with an insulation equivalent to that on the conductors.
(3) Separation. Battery and other low-voltage circuits shall be physically separated by at least a 13-mm (1⁄2-in.) gap or other approved means from circuits of a different power source. Acceptable methods shall be by clamping, routing, or equivalent means that ensure permanent total separation. Where circuits of different power sources cross, the external jacket of the nonmetallic-sheathed cables shall be deemed adequate separation.
(4) Ground Connections. Ground connections to the chassis or frame shall be made in an accessible location and shall be mechanically secure. Ground connections shall be by means of copper conductors and copper or copper-alloy


This would indicate that trailer systems are listed separately or there's contradictory regulations.

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Old 05-14-2013, 09:52 PM   #36
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Byron, "Park Trailers" are a separate subgroup, since they are not generally mobile, but installed in a park-like situation.

551.1 Scope. The provisions of this article cover the electrical conductors and equipment other than low-voltage and automotive vehicle circuits or extensions thereof, installed within or on recreational vehicles, the conductors that connect recreational vehicles to a supply of electricity, and the installation of equipment and devices related to electrical installations within a recreational vehicle park.
Informational Note: For information on low-voltage systems, refer to NFPA 1192-2008, Standard on Recreational Vehicles, and ANSI/RVIA 12V-2005, Standard for Low Voltage Systems in Conversion and Recreational Vehicles.

551.20 Combination Electrical Systems.
(A) General. Vehicle wiring suitable for connection to a battery or dc supply source shall be permitted to be connected to a 120-volt source, provided the entire wiring system and equipment are rated and installed in full conformity with Parts I, II, III, IV, and V requirements of this article covering 120-volt electrical systems. Circuits fed from ac transformers shall not supply dc appliances.
( Voltage Converters (120-Volt Alternating Current to Low-Voltage Direct Current). The 120-volt ac side of the voltage converter shall be wired in full conformity with
70-491
Parts I, II, III, IV, and V requirements of this article for 120-volt electrical systems.
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Old 05-14-2013, 10:23 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinPete View Post
Byron, "Park Trailers" are a separate subgroup, since they are not generally mobile, but installed in a park-like situation.

551.1 Scope. The provisions of this article cover the electrical conductors and equipment other than low-voltage and automotive vehicle circuits or extensions thereof, installed within or on recreational vehicles, the conductors that connect recreational vehicles to a supply of electricity, and the installation of equipment and devices related to electrical installations within a recreational vehicle park.
Informational Note: For information on low-voltage systems, refer to NFPA 1192-2008, Standard on Recreational Vehicles, and ANSI/RVIA 12V-2005, Standard for Low Voltage Systems in Conversion and Recreational Vehicles.

551.20 Combination Electrical Systems.
(A) General. Vehicle wiring suitable for connection to a battery or dc supply source shall be permitted to be connected to a 120-volt source, provided the entire wiring system and equipment are rated and installed in full conformity with Parts I, II, III, IV, and V requirements of this article covering 120-volt electrical systems. Circuits fed from ac transformers shall not supply dc appliances.
( Voltage Converters (120-Volt Alternating Current to Low-Voltage Direct Current). The 120-volt ac side of the voltage converter shall be wired in full conformity with
70-491
Parts I, II, III, IV, and V requirements of this article for 120-volt electrical systems.

I see 551 covers everything except the low voltage (12 volt system). I missed that the first time through

"requirements covering the 120-volt electrical system."

So it says twice 551 is for Recreational Vehicles 120 Systems.
Ok Now where's the 12 Volt system for Recreational Vehicles?

Article 720 appears to read like a building rather than a Recreational Vehicle and is in conflict with the Park Trailer information on low voltage.
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Old 05-14-2013, 10:41 PM   #38
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The mighty NEC contradictory? Nooooo...

I'm a belt-and-suspenders kind of guy, I oversize conductors, lets me sleep better at night.

90.2 is the catch, the scope of the Code covers RV's, all wiring, even cable TV and thermostats. Figuring out which particular section applies ain't my job, and I seriously doubt many RV's get inspected after they leave the factory. Personally, for one or two panels meant to be ground-mounted, I'd get a piece of 12-2 heavy-duty cord and keep it under 25'. You're gonna lose some, but with PV there isn't much to start with.
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:31 PM   #39
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I used 10 gauge stranded wire from the controller directly to the battery. The controller is mounted on the dinette bench next to the sink. The wire goes through the cabinet, then the couch and out to the battery, with a 20amp fuse.

My Mark 15 (15 amp) controller says to use:

Battery Connection
10g 10ft
8g 20ft
6g 30ft
4g 40ft

Solar Connection
14g 10ft
12g 20ft
10g 30ft
8g 40ft

It's roughly 10ft to the battery and then I've got some 30ft of wire to use if I ever choose to put the solar panel out away from the Scamp. So that's why I used 10gauge wire.

My 55watt panel charges the battery in a heart beat. I've had no problems at all. I love it.
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:37 PM   #40
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I just looked to see what your controller is....20amp I see. Here's what my controller instructions say for 20amp.

Battery Connection
--SAME AS ABOVE--


Solar Connection
12g 10ft
10g 20ft
8g 30ft
6g 40ft

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Old 05-22-2013, 11:26 PM   #41
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Thumbs up

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Originally Posted by Thomas G. View Post
Thanks for posting that link. I'd forgotten how much i enjoyed reading his blog! Solid info on the topic, & his updated info is fresh.
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Old 05-23-2013, 05:05 PM   #42
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<-- I hope the experts are done with their discussion which cable to put first.

I have an unrelated question - Solar Blvd lists the weight of these panels at 20lbs each, is this true? Seems a bit heavy.


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Originally Posted by Ken in Philly View Post
First and foremost, thanks to this wonderful community, 90 watts of solar (2x45W) panels just arrived from solar blvd.
Thanks for this new obsession!
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