Solar panel

When I was installing the external TV antenna I noticed the large, almost flat area at the back of the sleeper roof. Hmmmm...that would be a nice place to put a flexible solar panel. For a long time I kept an eye out for an adhesive solar panel. The purpose of this project is to have some solar power to keep the batteries charged. I'll use a Renogy PWM controller I have left over from a house solar project.

I never found a reasonably priced self-adhesive solar panel so I decided to get a normal flexible panel and use 3M VHB (very high bond) tape to adhere it. This panel got good reviews on Amazon. Here are the specs.

The panel itself. There were a couple places the plastic covering was wrinkled. I checked the voltage to make sure everything worked, and it did. I cleaned the back of the panel with alcohol then applied the VHB tape around the edges and a piece in the middle.

The top of the truck was pretty nasty from sitting outside most of the summer. Not only dust/dirt, but tree sap also. I scrubbed as much of the roof as I could reach. That led to washing the sides of the truck which led to an unplanned (but much needed) washing of the whole truck.

I cleaned the roof with alcohol and sat the panel in place. My plan was to unbolt the upper part of the side fairing and run the cable under the fairing for a clean look. The first bolt came out without issue. The second bolt was a bear and when it finally started to loosen it started to crack the fairing, then the nutsert in the fairing started spinning. The third bolt snapped off. Things weren't looking good so I moved on to Plan B...

...running the cables over the fairing. I secured the cables well with clamps and ties. I don't want them to flop around.

The cables run down the back of the fairing and into the driver side jockey box. The cables were secured several places. I bought 20-foot cables for this. They didn't come with the solar panel.

I mounted the solar controller on the underside of the dinette seat. It has a few basic lights that can be seen at a glance. The 7.5 amp fuse will double as a disconnect switch. I hooked the controller directly to the batteries so they can charge even if the batteries are disconnected.

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