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Old 02-18-2016, 10:05 PM   #21
turbopilot
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: San Luis Obispo, CA
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Default Re: GP-FLEX-200 System Additional Panels

Had a nice sunny day on the central coast of California so I decided to "stress test" the 500 watt Flex panel system on my Unity. Was able to get 20.3 amps out of the panel at noon on the 17th of February. Not bad. These panels may be putting out more than their rated output. It was also 82 F when this screen shot was taken so the panels on the roof were pretty warm.



By June with the sun directly overhead these panels should at least put out their rated output around 28 amps, if not more.

Feeling pretty good about this when all of a sudden the solar controller "crashed" with a blinking screen. Got on the phone with GoPower tech support (very good experience) and we worked through a number of steps to reboot the controller. Nothing was working so they said they would send a new controller.

Then I thought I would explore the wiring from the solar controller to the + side of the DC bus in the house battery box. I found that LTV ran a #8 wire from the solar controller down to the battery box. This is good news as the documentation only calls for a #10 wire, so there should be less loss.

Then in the battery compartment I discovered that LTV had spliced the #8 wire to a #12 wire with a fuse holder containing a 15 amp fuse. The fuse holder #12 wire then attached to the house DC buss on the house side of the 200 amp fuse from the house battery. I also found that the 15 amp fuse was blown, which makes sense since the panels were generating 20.3 amps when the controller crashed.

Here is the original installation. You can see the red #8 wire coming in from the right where it was spliced to the yellow #12 wire.



So I pulled out the yellow fuse holder and replaced it with a Blue Sea Systems 285 30A Circuit Breaker.


Here is the final installation:



So if you have the factory installed 200 watt GoPower Flex solar panel option and you want to add additional panels to your Unity, make sure you update the wiring to support the additional load form the expansion panels.
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