Adding Solar power to a Yacht

Solar Panel

Details on the solar panels we used, along with the other equipment required, wiring diagrams and other key information.

We bought our solar panels from Bimble Solar, so the reference number below is for them

Main Equipment

  • 12v-300w-flexi-kit-victron - 12V 300W flexi stick down panel kit with Victron MPPT controller

From this kit we did not use the cable gland entry box, as it is designed to be stuck on over the hole through the boat, and seeing as it was to be mounted on the stern of the yacht, we decided that this was not strong enough for our needs. We also did not use the CT1 supplied, but this was only because we already had some in our stores.

Other Equipment

  • MC4-Y-Splitter - MC4 Connector Y Splitter 2 way branch - Pair (Male & Female) Also from Bimble Solar - these were so that we could run the solar panels in parallel.
  • 6mm cable - Red and Black for inside the yacht, tinned if possible
  • Junction Boxes - to protect the junction between the pre-made wire and the 6mm cables
  • Cable seals - We used the ones from the local chandler, but are similar to these
  • Amalgamating tape - We used this as additional protection over the connectors

Installation

Wiring Diagram of our Solar Installation

The 10m cable must be used outside of the yacht as it is designed for that purpose in mind. We threaded this cable though the cable glands to a junction box which we installed inside our starboard locker. The cables from the junction box was then run to the controller, with the +ve wire going through a relay before going to the +ve terminal and the -ve going to the -ve battery cable. If you have a battery bank like we do, the 12v boating group that we are a part of advised us to run the +ve wire to one battery and the -ve wire to the other.

I have shown the wiring of the solar panels in series and in parallel as there is a huge debate about the pros and cons of the two solutions. We will be looking at this ourselves but at least now we have a real situation, to find out what works best for us.

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Raising money for the RNLI

We were only on our third sail in our brand new boat to us and we had to call the coast guard for assistance. That assistance came in the shape of a RNLI boat from Portpatrick, so we have decided to raise money for the RNLI through our Damsels in distress page on just giving, that way you know that any money goes straight to them. We have set ourselves a target of £500 and we would like to honour our pledge, so if you like our videos then please give a little to those who rescue people in the seas around the UK.

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