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Using external suitcase solar panels


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I just purchased a Oliver 2 and I opted to have an external solar port installed so I can use my 200 watt Coleman suitcase solar panels that I have used with my living quarters horse trailer. These use the crocodile clips or spade connectors that go onto the battery terminal. I like the idea of not having to pull out the batteries tray out of the battery storage compartment (but use the solar port) every time I need to connect them to the external solar panels. 

My Questions are:

1. What kind of connector do I need to use this port for the external solar panels.  I have looked on amazon but I am not sure if what I am looking at will work.

2. I included the Xantrex 2000W Inverter in the build so do I still need the solar charge controller that came with the Coleman solar panels or can this be directly hooked to the panels.

Any help or you tube videos that might show how all this works would be very much appreciated. 

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Posted (edited)

1. We can look up the connectors you need. Did they install the Zamp port?

2. You still need the solar controller on your panels. The inverter is a completely different piece of (important to some) equipment. You never want to send solar power directly to a battery, unregulated. That's what your controller does. The solar port takes that regulated power, through a fused line, to your battery. So, you get two protections for your battery. The existing solar controller, and an inline fuse.

Edited by SeaDawg
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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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35 minutes ago, Imelda said:

I just purchased a Oliver 2 and I opted to have an external solar port installed so I can use my 200 watt Coleman suitcase solar panels that I have used with my living quarters horse trailer. These use the crocodile clips or spade connectors that go onto the battery terminal. I like the idea of not having to pull out the batteries tray out of the battery storage compartment (but use the solar port) every time I need to connect them to the external solar panels. 

My Questions are:

1. What kind of connector do I need to use this port for the external solar panels.  I have looked on amazon but I am not sure if what I am looking at will work.

2. I included the Xantrex 2000W Inverter in the build so do I still need the solar charge controller that came with the Coleman solar panels or can this be directly hooked to the panels.

Any help or you tube videos that might show how all this works would be very much appreciated. 

You can get the connector on the Bezos site, jut know it needs to be connected opposite from most. Double check the positive lead - Zamp does theirs "backwards" - look on the Zamp site for a looksi. 

Yes you will need the controller, if it is like my unit  the port is wired straight to the batteries. 

 

Cindy,  Russell and  "Harley dog" . Home is our little farm near Winchester TN

2018 Oliver Legacy Elite II - 2018 GMC 2500 Duramax 

"Die young - As late as possible"

ALAZARCACOFLIDMTNVNMOKORTNTXUTWAWYd56201524964bac5483378b34b491562080842sm.jpg

 

 

 

 

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Thank you. There is a lot to learn. I guess I can still hook up the batteries directly to the solar charger controller like I did on my horse trailer while I figure out what connector I need for the solar port. I may call the service dept at Oliver and ask them what I need for the solar port to work.  I am going to check and see it the port is directly hooked to my batteries like yours.  

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  • 2 weeks later...

The factory installed FURRION outside port on my trailer (218) is limited to 10 amps, that is the manufacturers limit and they specify a 10 amp fuse inline with the battery wire. In the real world this limits your panel size to around 120 watts.
 

09B207E6-7A4E-4966-8FAF-1CE5D37B7F51.thumb.png.17374d78e72837c2f4c9d01a2c6279af.png


Furrion Solar Port 10 amp

You would need to add a second port and fuse, and also manufacture a “splitter” cable and always remember to connect both plugs. One fuse could pop before you get the second one plugged in, if the panel is in direct sunlight. I have no idea how well a splitter would function, that is up to the solar experts to comment on.  In your shoes I would just choose a more robust connection system, such as the VERY excellent Anderson PowerPoles with suitable heavy gage cables (I would use 6 or 8AWG, depending on length.) ..... https://powerwerx.com/panelpole-panel-mount-powerpole-housing

The big advantage of this is that you could simply plug in a second panel or a bigger one, and not worry about exceeding the limits. Or you could plug in a second cable to run a dc appliance like a fridge inside your truck, while the solar panel was connected. Also, with their ratcheting crimper, installation is simple. MUCH easier than soldering and sealing heavy gage wires.

Here is an aftermarket plug that fits the Furrion socket in many trailers. ****** You should check with Oliver and see if they continue to use this type in new ones, they sometimes change without notice.****** .Note, the plug is rated at 20 amps but the socket on your trailer is not!

CNLINKO 2 pin power connector

https://olivertraveltrailers.com/forums/topic/3247-how-to-external-solar-dc-power-cable-using-factory-furrion-port/

John Davies

Spokane WA

Edited by John E Davies

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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I'm pretty sure that the Zamp port does not have the same limitation as John's furrion port, as Zamp sells much larger suitcase solar products, as plug and play.

Zamp's 230 watt suitcase solar has an integrated 15 amp controller. 

https://www.zampsolar.com/230watt-portable

Does anyone know which brand port  Oliver is installing these days? 

Sherry 

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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Sherry,
Talked to Oliver before a service trip last year and they were installing the ZAMP PORTABLE SOLAR PORT W/ 20AMP INLINE FUSE for add on ports.  Decided to install the 10Amp Furrion port on Ollie for my 100W portable panel. With the 100W panel have not seen over 6 amps charging so far.
Bill
 
 
Edited by rideandfly
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Bill

LE2 #75 Tundra

 

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