Solar, roof vent, fridge and battery questions - Ford Transit USA Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-02-2016, 08:46:AM Thread Starter
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Solar, roof vent, fridge and battery questions

So I'm planning to install a Fantastic Vent next week, and wire in a portable 100w solar panel. Additionally, I'll install a 12v socket for an Edgestar fridge we're moving over from our Vanagon. I have the double battery setup, and was planning on wiring the fuse panel for all electrical gizmos to the starting bank until I install a house bank.

1. Will the fused charge controller and fused panel protect the gizmos from blowing, or do I need another inline fuse in there as well?
2. Is it okay to solar charge the starting bank, and does it matter which battery to connect it to?
3. Should I just go ahead and grab a deep cycle house battery and build my install around that?

Additional considerations:
1. Future electric requirements are pretty basic. Lights, fridge, fan, propex heater, and 12v charging for devices. Maybe a 12v TV if we get crazy.
2. We're in GA, with an imminent move to NV, then a move to the PNW 2-3 years after that.
3. We're pretty low maintenance and tend to favor simple, but safe, solutions.

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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-02-2016, 10:11:AM
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If you do not want to worry about the van starting, add a house battery.

I live in northern Ca. and had a 135 watt permanently mounted panel on the sold Sprinter. That provided just enough power to match the refrigerator power usage. Changed that to a single 205 watt panel so I could endure some grey days. That worked very well.

New Transit has a single 300 watt panel that is the same physical size as the Sprinter's 205 watt panel.

When installing the refrigerator, add insulation to the outside to reduce power usage. If you measure the inside and outside dimensions of a refrigerator you will determine there is about 1" of insulation. I added 2 to 2 1/2" of insulation on 5 sides.

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-03-2016, 07:36:AM
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get a fuse box from a trailer supply or r.v. store and mount it near the house battery. Fuse each positive line (lights, refrigerator, fan) as it leaves the battery. this will protect your system from short circuits etc. There should also be a large fuse on the wire coming off the battery. Don't underestimate the power in a 12 v dc battery, it can melt insulation and even start fires if not protected.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 04-03-2016, 09:37:AM
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Just a thought; fuses likely don't protect our "gizmos" from blowing but more likely protect the wire infrastructure feeding them. This comment is meant to be constructive in that the strategy is what determines ratings and placement of fuses.
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