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offroadkid
08-19-2018, 03:08 PM
Good morning!

We optioned our rig with the auxiliary battery but we still have our portable Goal Zero Boulder Briefcase 2X 100W panels that we were using with our Goal Zero Yeti 400 for exploring in the Land Cruiser.

With the new Sprinter I have been reading about people's solar setups and learned about MPPT's.

Can I, just connect an MPPT somehow to the factory auxiliary battery and then just plug in my solar panels when parked at camp?

If so, can you tell me where you put yours and how you wired it in?

Thanks!

autostaretx
08-19-2018, 07:55 PM
Yes, you can .... the Aux battery doesn't care where/how the electrons are arriving from.


--dick (i don't have a Yeti or the factory Aux battery, but combining charging sources is pretty simple)

asimba2
08-20-2018, 04:45 AM
Good morning!

We optioned our rig with the auxiliary battery but we still have our portable Goal Zero Boulder Briefcase 2X 100W panels that we were using with our Goal Zero Yeti 400 for exploring in the Land Cruiser.

With the new Sprinter I have been reading about people's solar setups and learned about MPPT's.

Can I, just connect an MPPT somehow to the factory auxiliary battery and then just plug in my solar panels when parked at camp?

If so, can you tell me where you put yours and how you wired it in?

Thanks!

Josh,
There is room in the driver's side seatbox to mount a Victron 100/30 charge controller. You could push some 8/2 duplex wire through the MB boot or drill a new hole, install a grommet (what I would do) and run that wire under the van and terminate with one of these (https://amzn.to/2nR2gvP) mounted to an L-bracket. Then you can put your solar panels anywhere there's sun and keep the Aux battery charged. Later when you get the GoalZero in its final resting point, you can add a transfer switch so you can decide to charge either the GZ or the Aux from solar. Just a thought.

Ken

offroadkid
08-20-2018, 02:13 PM
Josh,
There is room in the driver's side seatbox to mount a Victron 100/30 charge controller. You could push some 8/2 duplex wire through the MB boot or drill a new hole, install a grommet (what I would do) and run that wire under the van and terminate with one of these (https://amzn.to/2nR2gvP) mounted to an L-bracket. Then you can put your solar panels anywhere there's sun and keep the Aux battery charged. Later when you get the GoalZero in its final resting point, you can add a transfer switch so you can decide to charge either the GZ or the Aux from solar. Just a thought.

Ken

Thanks for the reply Ken!

After I clicked on your Amazon ZAMP link I began to look around and found this because I believe Goal Zero has their own connectors that do not work with others!

https://dancarrphotography.com/blog/2017/08/04/how-to-wire-goal-zero-solar-panel-zamp-connector/

Maybe I build this adapter to go to the ZAMP and then I will be in business! Did you go with the Bluetooth model?

asimba2
08-20-2018, 03:40 PM
Thanks for the reply Ken!

After I clicked on your Amazon ZAMP link I began to look around and found this because I believe Goal Zero has their own connectors that do not work with others!

https://dancarrphotography.com/blog/2017/08/04/how-to-wire-goal-zero-solar-panel-zamp-connector/

Maybe I build this adapter to go to the ZAMP and then I will be in business! Did you go with the Bluetooth model?

That might be a better route to go. I only suggested the Zamp because it is becoming an industry standard, but for compatibility reasons I'd go the way you suggested.

I have the older 100/30 with the separate bluetooth module. It's better and more cost-effective to just get the newer 100/30 with built-in bluetooth. The app works great and it scratches that inner-geek itch for data. My 300W LG single panel often performs well above its rating.
https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1876/43438075984_5aa3246dbe_b.jpg

23 amps "for free," while keeping a load off my alternator and probably getting better gas mileage as a result.

offroadkid
08-20-2018, 04:13 PM
That might be a better route to go. I only suggested the Zamp because it is becoming an industry standard, but for compatibility reasons I'd go the way you suggested.

I have the older 100/30 with the separate bluetooth module. It's better and more cost-effective to just get the newer 100/30 with built-in bluetooth. The app works great and it scratches that inner-geek itch for data. My 300W LG single panel often performs well above its rating.
https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1876/43438075984_5aa3246dbe_b.jpg

23 amps "for free," while keeping a load off my alternator and probably getting better gas mileage as a result.

Okay thanks! So I would still need the Victron with this setup, correct? This is just a way to connect the GZ panels to the Zamp to the Victron?

asimba2
08-20-2018, 06:27 PM
Okay thanks! So I would still need the Victron with this setup, correct? This is just a way to connect the GZ panels to the Zamp to the Victron?

I think the Goalzero has a built-in charge controller, not sure though. But in order to charge your Aux battery, you'll need a charge controller for that. Maybe someone can chime in if there's a way to connect the two together, (the GZ & the Aux battery) but I'm guessing no since you'd be mixing lithium and AGM, which have very different charge parameters.

offroadkid
08-20-2018, 06:42 PM
I think the Goalzero has a built-in charge controller, not sure though. But in order to charge your Aux battery, you'll need a charge controller for that. Maybe someone can chime in if there's a way to connect the two together, (the GZ & the Aux battery) but I'm guessing no since you'd be mixing lithium and AGM, which have very different charge parameters.

Oh! I was just meaning use the system without my Goal Zero Yeti. Just connecting the solar panels to the factory auxiliary battery. The panels are Goal Zero, and I would like to just use them to charge the factory auxiliary battery!

So I could use the Victron you mentioned but I see the adapter I found on the website for my panels to ZAMP connector has a built-in charge controller?

Text your reply if it's easier!

asimba2
08-20-2018, 08:03 PM
Oh! I was just meaning use the system without my Goal Zero Yeti. Just connecting the solar panels to the factory auxiliary battery. The panels are Goal Zero, and I would like to just use them to charge the factory auxiliary battery!

So I could use the Victron you mentioned but I see the adapter I found on the website for my panels to ZAMP connector has a built-in charge controller?

Text your reply if it's easier!

I didn't scroll down far enough to see the charge controller. From the description on the site, it should work just fine for your application, with one big caveat though--the product description says it is used to charge sealed lead acid batteries. Your aux battery is an AGM. You will want to find out if that charge controller has adjustable parameters and/or has a setting that is compatible with AGM.