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Old 09-26-2016, 08:19 AM   #1
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1973 23' Safari
1970 27' Overlander
Boerne , Texas
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 126
Pre-wire for solar

I am in the midst of putting my 1973 Safari back together. I do not plan to do any solar right now - but I want to have that option in the future. Before I put my interior walls back up, I thought I should at least run a wire to make this process easier if/when I decide to do this. I've read some of the threads, but can't seem to find a specific answer. Sounds like I should use 6 AWG or 8 AWG wire - but just one? Do I need a ground and a hot? I've read people going through the fridge vent - is this the best option? Anything else I should do to prep for this in the future?

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Old 09-26-2016, 08:43 AM   #2
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2014 25' Flying Cloud
Box Elder , South Dakota
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The wire gauge depends on how much capacity you would put on the roof. You could go with 6 or 8. You will need 2 conductors and they should be routed to the spot where your charge controller will be located. The controller should be as close to your batteries as possible.

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Old 09-26-2016, 10:20 AM   #3
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1974 27' Overlander
Baltimore , Maryland
Join Date: Mar 2016
Posts: 144
I used the roof combiner box from AM solar and 4awg welding wire from Amazon. My batteries are nowhere close to the fridge, so the fridge combiner box was not a good option. The gauge you need depends on the distance and how many panels you intend to install. I figured overkill was better than not having enough.

You need two wires. Shortest possible run from the roof to the charge controller, and shortest possible run from the controller to the batteries. Make sure you don't damage the wires when you're drilling holes to reinstall your skins.
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Old 09-26-2016, 10:47 AM   #4
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1978 25' Tradewind
Metro Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2003
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The wires you run should be at least 6 gauge, and preferably heavier than that. Heavier wire offers less resistance, so you'll get more power down into your batteries.

Be careful to protect the wires from sharp edges on the top refrigerator vent.
"Between what matters and what seems to matter, how should the world we know judge wisely?" - E.C. Bentley, Trent's Last Case
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