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Solar installation in grand california

L

leeb

Messages
126
Location
sussex
Vehicle
Grand California 680
The electrical set up in the grand is still confusing me. Still no idea why VW chose to place the leisure battery in the engine bay especially when I read the votronic solar charge controller data sheet. Diagram attached...2 points spring off the page
1. wiring from controller to leisure battery should be "length maximum 2m"...clearly much more than this given position of battery
2. "install solar controller near main battery"....like above, not done.

The system seems to work despite the "off piste" installation but given its quirky nature, and a desire to not mess with it too much for warranty purposes, I have been toying with the idea of installing a solar generator. So the idea is to install an ecoflow pro and its supplementary battery (1440Wh) in the electric cupboard and connecting directly to the votronic output (after disconnecting the engine bay leisure battery). The 240v output from the ecoflow could then be fed into the consumer unit via a changeover switch allowing hook up if available. This way the lithium battery in the ecoflow is topped up by solar (or the 20 amp fag lighter when engine running), all the 12 v circuitry in the van still runs from the original leisure battery, which is still charged by the alternator when engine running or via the vw battery charger from hook up or the ecoflow.

Am I mad or is the easiest way of using the existing set up to provide extra lithium oomph and 240v when off grid?

Screen Shot 2022-05-19 at 07.13.18.png
 
The electrical set up in the grand is still confusing me. Still no idea why VW chose to place the leisure battery in the engine bay especially when I read the votronic solar charge controller data sheet. Diagram attached...2 points spring off the page
1. wiring from controller to leisure battery should be "length maximum 2m"...clearly much more than this given position of battery
2. "install solar controller near main battery"....like above, not done.

The system seems to work despite the "off piste" installation but given its quirky nature, and a desire to not mess with it too much for warranty purposes, I have been toying with the idea of installing a solar generator. So the idea is to install an ecoflow pro and its supplementary battery (1440Wh) in the electric cupboard and connecting directly to the votronic output (after disconnecting the engine bay leisure battery). The 240v output from the ecoflow could then be fed into the consumer unit via a changeover switch allowing hook up if available. This way the lithium battery in the ecoflow is topped up by solar (or the 20 amp fag lighter when engine running), all the 12 v circuitry in the van still runs from the original leisure battery, which is still charged by the alternator when engine running or via the vw battery charger from hook up or the ecoflow.

Am I mad or is the easiest way of using the existing set up to provide extra lithium oomph and 240v when off grid?

View attachment 93243
hello I m new and just had GC 7 months ago. It make sense i was looking at the Ecoflow River pro with top up battery (1440wh) How did it goes? I m very new at this - where is the votronic output connection? AND where is the consumer unit ? and the changeover switch - is it for when u r using the Onboard battery or the ecoflow unit?
cheers J
 
It's a quirky way of doing it. What you are suggesting is:

Connect solar panels to Votronic MPPT controller, which then connects to the Eco Pro power bank.

There are two issues

1) The Eco pro can be connected to solar panels (up to 200w - may be more on bigger models) directly, which eliminates the need for the Votronic completely. This is what you should do really.

2) If you DO use the Votronic then it will expect to be connected "Directly" to a 12v battery to operate (and charge it accordingly) . If you connect it to the Car charge input on the Eco Pro, that won't be a direct connection - the Eco will be expecting a steady stream of 14.4 volts from an alternator, and it will manage the charging istself, in conlfict with the Votronic which will want to see a "pure" battery, and manage it's charging. The Votonic uses the connection to battery/s to actually power itself - it may not even get this back from the Eco Pro's 12v cigar charging port.

For my customers with power banks, I usually suggest connecting them one of two ways.

1) Install solar as normal, charging your LBs. Connect the power bank to a cig socket that runs from the LBs. The problem with this is it's then easy to flatten your LBs, and you cant set charging priorities.

2) use the load terminals on the MPPT charger (Votronic usnit doesn't have these) - i.e on a Victron 75/15 to attach a cig socket, and connect the power bank to this. The Victron, by default, will manage this port and make sure the LBs get a full charge at least once a day, but shutting off the load terminals when required. You can manually also set "rules" - i.e. don't power up the load terminals unless the LBs reach "x" state of charge.

Connecting your power bank to the mains hookup is a fun idea. It would work, but be a bit inneficient. You'd be converting DC to AC, then the WV charger would convert it back down to DC to charge the LBs. I also have no idea of the safety of this as it would not be earthed in any way.

Finally, the "don't run the battery cable more than 2m" advice isabout cable DC voltage loss. Just use a thicker cable! :) There are plenty of charts out there telling you the guague of wire to use vs/ distance at 12v. For 4m you'd want something like 2.5mm squ
 
Thank you Roger.
Guess I should stick to my day job!!! (Not a camper electrician)
May I be Ill just use the battery pack as intended!
 
R
It's a quirky way of doing it. What you are suggesting is:

Connect solar panels to Votronic MPPT controller, which then connects to the Eco Pro power bank.

There are two issues

1) The Eco pro can be connected to solar panels (up to 200w - may be more on bigger models) directly, which eliminates the need for the Votronic completely. This is what you should do really.

2) If you DO use the Votronic then it will expect to be connected "Directly" to a 12v battery to operate (and charge it accordingly) . If you connect it to the Car charge input on the Eco Pro, that won't be a direct connection - the Eco will be expecting a steady stream of 14.4 volts from an alternator, and it will manage the charging istself, in conlfict with the Votronic which will want to see a "pure" battery, and manage it's charging. The Votonic uses the connection to battery/s to actually power itself - it may not even get this back from the Eco Pro's 12v cigar charging port.

For my customers with power banks, I usually suggest connecting them one of two ways.

1) Install solar as normal, charging your LBs. Connect the power bank to a cig socket that runs from the LBs. The problem with this is it's then easy to flatten your LBs, and you cant set charging priorities.

2) use the load terminals on the MPPT charger (Votronic usnit doesn't have these) - i.e on a Victron 75/15 to attach a cig socket, and connect the power bank to this. The Victron, by default, will manage this port and make sure the LBs get a full charge at least once a day, but shutting off the load terminals when required. You can manually also set "rules" - i.e. don't power up the load terminals unless the LBs reach "x" state of charge.

Connecting your power bank to the mains hookup is a fun idea. It would work, but be a bit inneficient. You'd be converting DC to AC, then the WV charger would convert it back down to DC to charge the LBs. I also have no idea of the safety of this as it would not be earthed in any way.

Finally, the "don't run the battery cable more than 2m" advice isabout cable DC voltage loss. Just use a thicker cable! :) There are plenty of charts out there telling you the guague of wire to use vs/ distance at 12v. For 4m you'd want something like 2.5mm squ
It's a quirky way of doing it. What you are suggesting is:

Connect solar panels to Votronic MPPT controller, which then connects to the Eco Pro power bank.

There are two issues

1) The Eco pro can be connected to solar panels (up to 200w - may be more on bigger models) directly, which eliminates the need for the Votronic completely. This is what you should do really.

2) If you DO use the Votronic then it will expect to be connected "Directly" to a 12v battery to operate (and charge it accordingly) . If you connect it to the Car charge input on the Eco Pro, that won't be a direct connection - the Eco will be expecting a steady stream of 14.4 volts from an alternator, and it will manage the charging istself, in conlfict with the Votronic which will want to see a "pure" battery, and manage it's charging. The Votonic uses the connection to battery/s to actually power itself - it may not even get this back from the Eco Pro's 12v cigar charging port.

For my customers with power banks, I usually suggest connecting them one of two ways.

1) Install solar as normal, charging your LBs. Connect the power bank to a cig socket that runs from the LBs. The problem with this is it's then easy to flatten your LBs, and you cant set charging priorities.

2) use the load terminals on the MPPT charger (Votronic usnit doesn't have these) - i.e on a Victron 75/15 to attach a cig socket, and connect the power bank to this. The Victron, by default, will manage this port and make sure the LBs get a full charge at least once a day, but shutting off the load terminals when required. You can manually also set "rules" - i.e. don't power up the load terminals unless the LBs reach "x" state of charge.

Connecting your power bank to the mains hookup is a fun idea. It would work, but be a bit inneficient. You'd be converting DC to AC, then the WV charger would convert it back down to DC to charge the LBs. I also have no idea of the safety of this as it would not be earthed in any way.

Finally, the "don't run the battery cable more than 2m" advice isabout cable DC voltage loss. Just use a thicker cable! :) There are plenty of charts out there telling you the guague of wire to use vs/ distance at 12v. For 4m you'd want something like 2.5mm squ
Thanks Roger
 
Hola buenas tardes
Quiero instalar una placa solar en mi GC600 y me gustaría saber cuáles son las medidas? Y que regulador usar ?
Usar el cableado que trae el vehículo o irme directamente a la batería de ocio y olvidarme de lo demás ?
Gracias
Un saludo
 
Hola buenas tardes
Quiero instalar una placa solar en mi GC600 y me gustaría saber cuáles son las medidas? Y que regulador usar ?
Usar el cableado que trae el vehículo o irme directamente a la batería de ocio y olvidarme de lo demás ?
Gracias
Un saludo
Hola hugo. Acabo de comprarme una grand california 600 de segunda mano y he intentado contactar con solbian el fabricante los paneles solares, pero no recibo ninguna respuesta. Pudiste saber las medidas del panel solar original?, que panel compraste finalmente? Un saludo y perdon por las molestias

Enviado desde mi Redmi Note 8 Pro mediante Tapatalk
 
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