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Solar panels not charging batteries

Solar panels not charging batteries

(OP)
Please help or assist in my charging issues.

Firstly I am running 5, 200W 24V panels which are wired in parrael with all panels fused. Solar regulator is PWM 50 amp unit. Battery bank, I am running x4, 12v 200 amp batteries wired to produce 24v. Inverter / charger unit, rated at 3000 watt. Cable from panels to battery bank is three fase Orange power cable which I believe is rated at 10mm which given there are 5, cables I have two cables linked up for positive and same for negative so should have overall rating of 20mm. Length of cables from panels to regulatior is around 30 metres.

Voltage test just after panel was 42 v and same voltage tested just before regulatior 30 meters away from panels.

Charging issue, batteries will charge through inverter/ charger powered via generator but not through solar, regulator has been changed over but with replacement unit still doing the same and not charging.

Regulator specs, 12 /24v , 50amp Low voltage connection 25.2v which batteries have been as low as 24v

Question, if each solar panel is rated at 10amp x 5 = 50amp , being the regulator is only rated at 50amp would or could this be slightly undersized ?

Any help would be much appreciated as my Melbourne supplier is being of no help

RE: Solar panels not charging batteries

"Question, if each solar panel is rated at 10amp x 5 = 50amp , being the regulator is only rated at 50amp would or could this be slightly undersized ?"

Yes but that shouldn't affect your charging. In fact your panels are 8A at standard conditions, not 10, so i don't think it is undersized anyway.

As to the rest, you need someone on site who knows what to do. Time to look in the yellow pages. In my experience so long as you hook the controller up to the batteries first (like it says in the instruction manual) and set the system voltage to 24V (like it says in the instruction manual) then it should all work.

Cheers

Greg Locock


New here? Try reading these, they might help FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm?

RE: Solar panels not charging batteries

Is the regulator set for 12 Volt charging?
Is the regulator set to charge at 24 Volts. You may need 27 Volts or more to charge a 24 Volt battery bank.
Check the voltage at the battery terminals when charging from the generator and from the solar array.

Bill
--------------------
"Why not the best?"
Jimmy Carter

RE: Solar panels not charging batteries

(OP)
Thanks Bill
Regulator is 12/24v which automatically senses which volatage.
Re battery test through generator. The generator is defiantly charging batteries but haven't put metre on to check how much.
I believe the next part of elimination will be to bypass the Reg running solar directly to batteries and with multi meter hooked up to B bank should show voltage entering.
By doing this for only a short time will prove if the problem relates back to the regulator.

RE: Solar panels not charging batteries

"Regulator is 12/24v which automatically senses which volatage." Check your instruction manual. My PL40 will sense what system voltage is, and will run, but doesn't adjust some battery parameters unless you set it manually.

Cheers

Greg Locock


New here? Try reading these, they might help FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm?

RE: Solar panels not charging batteries

Are you really, really sure you do not need to move a switch, change of tap, move a connector on the charger/regulator to use the 12v/24v feature? Yes, it can do both, but it thinks it is trying to charge a 12v system. You think it thinks it wants to charge a 24 v system, and the "automatic" feature you think is automatic is manuel. (Tell Manuel to change it.)

RE: Solar panels not charging batteries

(OP)
Regarding Regulator there is no selector switch to change 12/24v and nothing in manual.
Also keep in mind this is the second Reg that I have received from my supplier both with same issue.
I would be have to change to a different type IF that's what the problem is.

RE: Solar panels not charging batteries

Remove the regulator and try charging directly.
Check current.
No or not enough current: panel(s) broken, corrosion on terminals, broken wire, reversed polarity, no water in battery (water or dry type?).
Manually disconnect the charging when target voltage is reached.
Otherwise Not reaching target voltage: regulator problem
That should answer your question.


RE: Solar panels not charging batteries

(OP)
That sound correct I will look at carrying out these exploatary works this coming weekend to hopefully solve my issues.
Regarding panels if any panels were set up with reverse polarity I would of had a different voltage than 42 volts ?
All wired to panels have been checked over and over.
If 1,of the panels were faulty not sure of what this may do and this is also why I will be looking at putting a clamp meter to test voltage for each panel.

RE: Solar panels not charging batteries

Yes. Those were kind of "general rules".

You can do a lot of educated guessing with just a low voltage (automobile) light bulb and two wires.


RE: Solar panels not charging batteries

Don't forget something simple too: Fore example, a "black and red" wire swapped coming from a solar panel to the connectors. Retrace EVERY connection to make sure something is not backwards.

"Anything that can be assembled two ways can be assembled the wrong way at least once."

Look internal on the regulator as well. A jumper bar may not be on the outside as a switch.

RE: Solar panels not charging batteries

Racooke,

Is Manuel Laboer working for you too? Great guy.

RE: Solar panels not charging batteries

(OP)
Hi all
I would just like to say thanks for all your help. My charging issue is now solved.
Problem was to do with wiring to battery bank which has now been sorted with regulator and system all working correctly.
Thanks Darren.

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