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Yet another Solar Panel question


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This is one of those questions where I already know what's best but just looking for feedback.


The Solar Panels I have can be raised up and tilted so I get a more direct look at the sun versus them remaining flat on my RV roof, and as would be expected subject to the suns location in the sky and time of year etc., its possible to increase charge by proper lifting/tilting. Okay next spring I'm adding another panel or two and due to my roof and mounting arrangement, hardware etc., it would take a lot more work and configuring to have the new panels be adjustable in the same geometry and angle as the existing. I know it would be best if all four were similar so my QUESTION IS: If say two are lifted at an angle for more sun exposure while the new one(s) remain flat on the roof and all (3 or 4) will be wired in series, what bad effects might I expect OTHER THEN I wont get as much charge as if all were producing more equal?????????????


My best guess is sure more panels will still give me more charge then I currently have and the flat panels might not (depends on sun angle) produce what the tilted will, but still my series sum will add up to more charge then with only the two original panels even if not the ideal situation.


The room I have and the hardware and mounting methods just makes it so much easier to mount my new panel(s) flat and be done with it. Actually based on my loads and useage what I have fulfills my needs (pretty much so even if they remain flat and aren't ever tilted) but I just want to add a bit more capacity and am willing to settle for less then maximum. I have about talked myself into mounting the new ones flat, wire in series, and not worry and just take what I can get lol YES My Charge Controller can handle the voltage and current I will end up with, that's not any problem.


Thanks gang


John T Long retired EE and I was more into AC power distribution then electronics grrrrrrrrrrrrr

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Is it possible to frame your panels in sets of two and then tilt them in pairs? Does that make sense? Sooo.. two panels conjoined on a single framework.. then tilt the full framework in unison. Basically a double decker "single" panel.


There is so much literature on the pros and cons of serial vs parallel, but in that particular application, with limited roof top, and assuming you are talking about 4 low power panels, I would probably run 2 sets wired in series.. then do a parallel run from each set to my C-box. That's just me though.

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Yarome, yep I hear and understand the double decker you're talking about but with my lift/tilt system which I can do from inside without going up on the roof it would be quite an undertaking which is why I may end up with the current two I can lift/tilt and the new panel(s) just laying flat on the roof. Yet to be decided is to buy a single 240 Watt Panel or two 100 Watt units. On the initial run to Florida I dry camped 8 days and had plenty of solar power and now I've been dry camped 6 days at the Yeehaw Junction Bluegrass Festival with some nighttime furnace operation and been capturing more power in the day then I use up at night, gotta love solar, I wouldn't be without it. In addition to a larger, I have a smaller inverter used exclusively for TV and Computer and charging electronics which crapped out today and I plan to replace it with a pure sine wave unit. They are more expensive but for sensitive electronics I feel safer using it.


Thanks and take care


John T

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Adding to the series connection idea..............all the panels I have had over the years (four on two different rigs and three on current rig) will almost stop generating current if a SINGLE cell is in shadow. If they were all wired in series, a single cell in shadow would shut down the entire array. You might want to experiment before committing to the series configuration. Maybe the newer panels don't exhibit these characteristics but something to check out.


I currently have three 250 watt/36 volt panels and love them. They are wired in parallel.



USN Retired
2002 Winnebago Ultimate Freedom

2012 F150 4x4

2018 Lincoln MKX

2019 HD Ultra Limited


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I would go series parallel and try to match the nominal voltage of the two banks.

U.S. Navy GSMC(SW) (RETIRED) 1993-11-01, 26 years service with 23 years of that active and 3 years reserve.  Now retired after 20 years at local hospital in the maintenance department.

1995 Gulf Stream Scenic Cruiser 34' DP W/6Spd Allison.  Road Master Sterling All terrain, Air Force One, towing new 2019 Jeep Cherokee Elite

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