Help - Installing Solar Panel - Fiberglass RV


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 07-15-2014, 07:58 AM   #1
Senior Member
 
Name: Huck
Trailer: ParkLiner
Virginia
Posts: 573
Help - Installing Solar Panel

I'm about ready to tackle the installation of 1 100 watt solar panel on my Parkliner. The job seems a bit overwhelming, mainly because it is so high up.

1) For those of you who have installed a rigid solar panel on the roof, how did you get up that high and have a stable platform to work from?

2) Did you install it by yourself? Mine seems a little heavy to be lugging up a ladder and positioning on the roof.

3) I installed 4 mounting brackets on my panel. I plan on using 3M tape for attachment. The mounting brackets don't provide much area for taping. I need ideas on how I can increase surface area so I can use more tape.

4) I want the option of plugging a portable solar panel in parallel to roof mounted panel. Is this what I need? Do I need to weatherproof when portable panel not plugged in?


__________________

__________________
Huck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 08:54 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
Name: Huck
Trailer: ParkLiner
Virginia
Posts: 573
I think I might have solved the problem. I decided to check prices on flexible solar panels. Renogy has a 100 watt bendable solar panel for $199.99 ($20 off). And it only weighs 3 lbs.

So I ordered one. If I am dry camping, I can take the 100 watt portable panel I already have and connect it in parallel with the bendable panel.
__________________

__________________
Huck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 09:17 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
Carol H's Avatar
 
Name: Carol
Trailer: 22' Airstream Formerly 16' Scamp
British Columbia
Posts: 11,731
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by Huck View Post


4) I want the option of plugging a portable solar panel in parallel to roof mounted panel. Is this what I need? Do I need to weatherproof when portable panel not plugged in?

]
Huck is the question in regards to your controller? Some are weatherproof some are not - most being the later so they need to be protected from the elements. Either way I would make sure the controller is protected as I do some winter travel and I don't think the road grim etc would be all that great for it. I keep the line/plug in for my portable panel connected to the controller but when not in use the connection is stored inside a small waterproof box mounted on the side of my battery for ease of use. Ran the cable up into the small outside box from the bottom of the box and sealed the hole it went up through. Has worked fine for about 5 years now.
Carol H is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 09:33 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
Name: Huck
Trailer: ParkLiner
Virginia
Posts: 573
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carol H View Post
Huck is the question in regards to your controller? Some are weatherproof some are not - most being the later so they need to be protected from the elements. Either way I would make sure the controller is protected as I do some winter travel and I don't think the road grim etc would be all that great for it. I keep the line/plug in for my portable panel connected to the controller but when not in use the connection is stored inside a small waterproof box mounted on the side of my battery for ease of use. Ran the cable up into the small outside box from the bottom of the box and sealed the hole it went up through. Has worked fine for about 5 years now.
Carol, I was referring to the y cable. From the y cable, 1 end goes to controller and will stayed connected. One end goes to roof mounted panel and will stay connected. The other end on the y cable will only be connected when the portable panel is in use.

So I'm asking if I have to protect that 1 open connector on the y cable. It will be on the roof.
__________________
Huck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 09:42 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
Carol H's Avatar
 
Name: Carol
Trailer: 22' Airstream Formerly 16' Scamp
British Columbia
Posts: 11,731
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by Huck View Post
Carol, I was referring to the y cable. From the y cable, 1 end goes to controller and will stayed connected. One end goes to roof mounted panel and will stay connected. The other end on the y cable will only be connected when the portable panel is in use.

So I'm asking if I have to protect that 1 open connector on the y cable. It will be on the roof.
I get it. I would definitely find a way to protect it from the elements when the portable isn't plugged in. I would consider using two separate cables - one to the roof and the other going out to the tongue area so you don't need to be climbing up to the roof every time you want to attach the portable panel & you wouldn't have to worry about the open end of the portable connection sitting up on the roof exposed.
Carol H is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 02:29 PM   #6
Member
 
Seldomseensmith's Avatar
 
Name: David
Trailer: Hunter
New Mexico
Posts: 81
Do people really 3M tape the solar mounts to their roof? I have a hard time believing this is reasonable.

Sent from my SCH-I545 using Fiberglass RV mobile app
__________________
Seldomseensmith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 03:16 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Carol H's Avatar
 
Name: Carol
Trailer: 22' Airstream Formerly 16' Scamp
British Columbia
Posts: 11,731
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by Seldomseensmith View Post
Do people really 3M tape the solar mounts to their roof? I have a hard time believing this is reasonable.

Sent from my SCH-I545 using Fiberglass RV mobile app
Yup lots of people here have used it some for a number of years will no ill effect. 3M makes on of their tapes high bond especially for solar panel use.
Carol H is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 03:50 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
deryk's Avatar
 
Name: deryk
Trailer: 2012 Parkliner 2010 V6 Nissan Frontier 4x4
New Jersey
Posts: 2,086
Registry
I bolted mine to my roof. I used the 4 included clips and bought 4(used 2) on the front edge so it was less likely to lift off the roof. The panel is a touch awkward to carry up and down a ladder but hopefully will never have to remove it lol.
__________________
deryk

All that is gold does not glitter, Not all those who wander are lost; The old that is strong does not wither, Deep roots are not reached by the frost.... J.R.R. Tolkien
deryk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 05:38 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
Name: David
Trailer: Escape Trailers
Massachusetts
Posts: 208
Tape seems to work for us

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seldomseensmith View Post
Do people really 3M tape the solar mounts to their roof? I have a hard time believing this is reasonable.

Sent from my SCH-I545 using Fiberglass RV mobile app
We've had two 40W flexible panels 3M-taped to our Scamp 5er for a couple years and 25,000+ miles. Can't see any deterioration in the connection to this point. Believe this method offers a lot less drag than other methods.
__________________
Stretcher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 06:09 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Name: Huck
Trailer: ParkLiner
Virginia
Posts: 573
Quote:
Originally Posted by deryk View Post
I bolted mine to my roof. I used the 4 included clips and bought 4(used 2) on the front edge so it was less likely to lift off the roof. The panel is a touch awkward to carry up and down a ladder but hopefully will never have to remove it lol.
Did you do it all from a ladder or did you climb on the roof?
__________________
Huck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 06:39 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
Name: J Mac
Trailer: 17b Escape
British Columbia
Posts: 125
You could also buy a 7 pin plug (like the one on your tow vehicle) and plug into the pigtail on your trailer if you have a controller. That's what I do.
If you have an extra battery and a portable solar panel with a controller you could drive to where the sun is and come back to the trailer and alligator clip your batteries together in series.


Sent from my iPhone using Fiberglass RV
__________________
J Mac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-15-2014, 06:49 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
deryk's Avatar
 
Name: deryk
Trailer: 2012 Parkliner 2010 V6 Nissan Frontier 4x4
New Jersey
Posts: 2,086
Registry
Huck, I have a 12 foot ladder and did it that way...was easier then drilling out the rivets to replace my fantastic fan with the MaxxAir fan. I did lean on the roof a bit but don't try climbing up there unless you want to add a skylight lol. I opened the escape hatch and mounted it as close to it as I could since I didn't wan't the wind riding up the front side of my ParkLiner while towing and hitting the panel and sheering it off. I was a bit nervous drilling the holes through my roof but I beveled the edges of the holes and used Butyl tape and tight fitting bolts and it has survived several heavy rainstorms. Where the wires pass through I mounted it so it went into my bathroom...god forbid it leaks one day it will leak into the fiberglass shower drain pan lol.
Attached Thumbnails
11.jpg  
__________________
deryk

All that is gold does not glitter, Not all those who wander are lost; The old that is strong does not wither, Deep roots are not reached by the frost.... J.R.R. Tolkien
deryk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2014, 06:03 AM   #13
Senior Member
 
honda03842's Avatar
 
Name: Norm and Ginny
Trailer: Scamp 16
Florida
Posts: 7,300
We taped our flexible panel to the roof 3 years ago, on the road all over the place for 20 months, all kinds of weather, no problems. Used a ladder, did not climb on Roof. Fed wires thru a marine fitting mounted near panels to controller.

Sent from my SCH-I545 using Fiberglass RV mobile app
__________________
Norm and Ginny

2014 Honda Odyssey
1991 Scamp 16
honda03842 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-16-2014, 08:48 AM   #14
Senior Member
 
Name: Steve
Trailer: Scamp 19
Arizona
Posts: 170
I installed 2-50w panels about 6 months ago, using 3M VHB tape. My mounts were about 3"X1" so that gave me about 12 sq. inches of holding area per panel. I also used 3M 5200 adhesive sealer around the side of each mount to seal water from sitting against the tape. I did have two mounts on each panel that didn't want to sit flat on the roof top, so used a couple of pop rivets (with lots of 3M 5200 under and over the rivets) to hold the mounts flat. I also used the 3M 5200 in puddles to hold the wires tight, instead of wire clips with rivets, on the roof top (remember I had to run wire from one panel to the next then into a water tight feed through). My panels are mounted one forward of the forward hatch and one just behind the hatch, on the raised part on my Scamp 5er

I have just returned for pulling the trailer over 8,000 mile in 3 months and was up checking the panel yesterday and everything looks tight and secure.

Bottom line is I'm very happy with having used the hard panels, charging speed, the fact that I have air space under the panels, and having them permanently mounted on the trailers roof top.
__________________

__________________
captsteve2002 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
solar, solar panel


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Solar Panel Set up Question - Grounding the panel? Anne H Electrical | Charging, Systems, Solar and Generators 2 09-07-2012 05:48 PM
Does anyone have a solar panel I can borrow? peterh Oregon Gatherings 5 05-05-2012 10:29 AM
Scamp 16 - installing new fuse panel / 12v convertor John Carter Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 2 03-19-2012 12:49 PM
Solar Panel Stand Barbara Gardin Problem Solving | Owners Helping Owners 6 07-03-2009 08:30 PM
solar panel help Maggie Electrical | Charging, Systems, Solar and Generators 9 07-18-2006 05:38 PM

» Trailer Showcase

Minit

Karen Allen

BFD

Lilliv
» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:21 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.