Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 09-12-2014, 12:01 PM   #1
Rivet Master
 
urnmor's Avatar
 
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Berlin , Maryland
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 1,221
Solar Controller

I have factory installed solar panels on our 2012 FC and it appears the PVCM25D a 25A Photo-Voltaic charge Controller has gone bad and will need to be replaced. My question is would you replace it OEM part from Atkinson or use a different make and model.

Thanks
__________________

__________________
urnmor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 12:18 PM   #2
Rivet Master
Commercial Member
 
lewster's Avatar
 
Vintage Kin Owner
Naples, FL , Hood River, OR
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 7,279
Quote:
Originally Posted by urnmor View Post
I have factory installed solar panels on our 2012 FC and it appears the PVCM25D a 25A Photo-Voltaic charge Controller has gone bad and will need to be replaced. My question is would you replace it OEM part from Atkinson or use a different make and model.

Thanks
There seem to have been a significant number of solar charge controller failures associated with the OEM unit provided by Airstream. Depending on the size of your solar array and what type of information you would like from your solar charge controller, there are several alternatives that are better units.

From the basic MPPT charge controllers with temperature compensation like the Blue Sky 3000i to the sophisticated Blue Sky 2512iX-HV with the iPN remote that has full temp. compensation and a full function integrated battery monitor system. Morningstar also makes a very nice 15 amp MPPT stand-alone unit.

I have been installing these for the past several years and have yet to see a failure from either Blue Sky of Morningstar.
__________________

__________________
Lew Farber...ABYC Certified Master Marine Electrician...RVIA Certified Master Tech ...AM Solar Authorized Installation Center...AIRSTREAM Solar & Electrical Specialist...Micro Air 'Easy Start' Sales and Installations
lewster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 01:19 PM   #3
Rivet Master
 
urnmor's Avatar
 
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Berlin , Maryland
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 1,221
I appreciate the info. If I went with different controller would I have to change the wiring and/or display.
__________________
urnmor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 01:43 PM   #4
Rivet Master
Commercial Member
 
lewster's Avatar
 
Vintage Kin Owner
Naples, FL , Hood River, OR
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 7,279
Quote:
Originally Posted by urnmor View Post
I appreciate the info. If I went with different controller would I have to change the wiring and/or display.
Depending on the controller you choose, yes and no.
__________________
Lew Farber...ABYC Certified Master Marine Electrician...RVIA Certified Master Tech ...AM Solar Authorized Installation Center...AIRSTREAM Solar & Electrical Specialist...Micro Air 'Easy Start' Sales and Installations
lewster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 01:53 PM   #5
Rivet Master
 
urnmor's Avatar
 
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Berlin , Maryland
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 1,221
Lew
I would prefer not to have to change either the wiring or the display however I would prefer a better controller
Tanks again for the info
John
__________________
urnmor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 02:24 PM   #6
Rivet Master
 
lsbrodsky's Avatar
 
2012 25' FB International
Trent Woods , North Carolina
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 1,687
I do not see how that display is going to work with anything else, but the wiring will be the same for most everything else.
Larry
__________________
lsbrodsky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 02:39 PM   #7
Rivet Master
Commercial Member
 
lewster's Avatar
 
Vintage Kin Owner
Naples, FL , Hood River, OR
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 7,279
The display must be replaced with what a unit made by the new solar charge controller manufacturer. The RJ-11 cable should still be compatible, but I generally leave the old display in place and run new cable to a new display location.


Lew Farber
RVIA/RVDA Nationally Certified Master Tech
Master Tech Energy Systems, Inc.
AM Solar Certified Installation Center
Lifeline Batteries**Magnum Inverters
541-490-6357
__________________
Lew Farber...ABYC Certified Master Marine Electrician...RVIA Certified Master Tech ...AM Solar Authorized Installation Center...AIRSTREAM Solar & Electrical Specialist...Micro Air 'Easy Start' Sales and Installations
lewster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 02:54 PM   #8
Rivet Master
 
dkottum's Avatar
 
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Battle Lake , Minnesota
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 7,716
We have the factory solar in the same model as yours. Works well, displays what we need to know, I would just replace the original with the same one.
__________________
Doug and Cheryl
2012 FC RB, Michelin 16, ProPride 1400
2016 Ram 1500 Laramie Crew Cab 4X4 Ecodiesel 3.92 axles

The Truth is More Important Than the Facts
dkottum is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 05:00 PM   #9
Rivet Master
 
lsbrodsky's Avatar
 
2012 25' FB International
Trent Woods , North Carolina
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 1,687
Doug,

I disagree, the factory system uses a controller that is on or off and is really as bad as the factory converter for battery charging. Any of the models Lewster mentions have charge profiles that are the right way to charge the batteries.
Larry
__________________
lsbrodsky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 05:55 PM   #10
Rivet Master
 
urnmor's Avatar
 
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Berlin , Maryland
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 1,221
Larry
I know little about solar and or their controllers. It would certainly be easier to swap out the old for the new.
Could yoy also tell me if you have factory installed solar and have you had to change it out. If so what did you go with and where did you place the new display. My concern of course is running the wires and making another hole in the AS.

Thanks
John
__________________
urnmor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 06:09 PM   #11
Rivet Master
 
lsbrodsky's Avatar
 
2012 25' FB International
Trent Woods , North Carolina
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 1,687
Yes, new for old is easy. I doubt you should do what I did if you are not into this stuff. I clipped one wire on the old and spliced in a new controller located just under the foot of the bed. I wanted to be able to see the lights on the controller, which you cannot see in the factory install. The old display still reads voltage but since it is cut out of the circuit it does not read current. Doesn't matter to me because I installed a Trimetrics monitor to tell me all of the DC circuit parameters and the factory display is redundant and less robust. Oh I went with the Morningstar MPPT controller.
Larry
__________________
lsbrodsky is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 07:45 PM   #12
Rivet Master
 
urnmor's Avatar
 
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Berlin , Maryland
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 1,221
Larry
I think I will do it the easy way and thanks for the information.
John
__________________
urnmor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 07:46 PM   #13
Rivet Master
 
urnmor's Avatar
 
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Berlin , Maryland
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 1,221
Doug thanks for the info I am definitely leaning to replacing the old with one just like it.
John
__________________
urnmor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2014, 08:28 PM   #14
Rivet Master
 
dkottum's Avatar
 
2012 25' Flying Cloud
Battle Lake , Minnesota
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 7,716
Quote:
Originally Posted by lsbrodsky View Post
Doug,

I disagree, the factory system uses a controller that is on or off and is really as bad as the factory converter for battery charging. Any of the models Lewster mentions have charge profiles that are the right way to charge the batteries.
Larry
Thanks Larry. I have some electronics background but it's been awhile.

The way I understand it the factory solar controller cycles the charge turning on or off when the voltage reaches predetermined high or low voltages, variable by temperature. (It would have to be mounted in the battery compartment to have better temperature compensation.)

I believe that's better than the factory converter/charger which places a constant high charging voltage on the batteries (with no consideration for temperature), shortening the battery life.

For that reason I try to never allow the factory converter/charger to charge the batteries by putting the battery switch (by the entrance door) in the "STORE" position whenever connected to external power. I let the solar do the charging, unless there is little or no sun available and I have low batteries.

Maybe the factory solar controller does not have an ideal charging profile, but is it really as bad as the factory converter? I'm don't usually to throw money toward perfection when good enough is doing the job.
__________________

__________________
Doug and Cheryl
2012 FC RB, Michelin 16, ProPride 1400
2016 Ram 1500 Laramie Crew Cab 4X4 Ecodiesel 3.92 axles

The Truth is More Important Than the Facts
dkottum is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
I'm confused, where do I wire in solar controller bmklawt Generators & Solar Power 7 06-20-2011 12:22 AM
Whats the best Solar Charge Controller? Keyair Generators & Solar Power 17 05-09-2011 06:04 PM
Where do I connect the solar charge controller on an '87 Soverign? willbrackman Generators & Solar Power 2 08-01-2010 09:11 PM
Univolt replacement now or later, and does solar affect which charge controller? mlepisto Batteries, Univolts, Converters & Inverters 3 11-05-2009 08:16 PM
New F150 '09 brake controller vs. Prodigy brake controller dukester Brakes & Brake Controllers 17 01-20-2009 11:46 PM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:31 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.