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Old 11-21-2013, 11:02 AM   #1
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Upgraded solar controller

Since I concluded that my trailer batteries will be solar charging more than any other state, I decided to upgrade the controller from the On-Off type provided by AS from Atkinson. AM Solar steered me towards the Morningstar Sunsetter 10 PWM style.
Unfortunately, AS hides the controller all the way forward under and between a mess of other electrical stuff and it is virtually inaccessible, even to look at the status lights.
I concluded that the only reasonable connection solution was to parallel the controllers battery connections with automotive splices. Fortunately, AS joins the solar + connection with a wire nut so I disconnected that and connected the solar output to the new controller.
Because I recently installed a Trimetrics I have all of the indication I need and with the battery in Store, I see only solar current. But because I left the original hooked up to the battery, I still see voltage in the galley. Of course the original shunt is not in the circuit so I only see voltage on the Atkinson panel.
I mounted the new controller under the bed next to the inverter so I can just lift the bed platform if I want to see status lights. If I want to go back to stock before selling, I can just reconnect the solar yellow wire back to the original.
Except for having to remove the electrical area divider panel and working through the small access port in the bed platform, the install was not too bad.
Larry
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Old 11-21-2013, 12:18 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lsbrodsky View Post
Unfortunately, AS hides the controller all the way forward under and between a mess of other electrical stuff and it is virtually inaccessible, even to look at the status lights.
I concluded that the only reasonable connection solution was to parallel the controllers battery connections with automotive splices. Fortunately, AS joins the solar + connection with a wire nut so I disconnected that and connected the solar output to the new controller.
Abandon-in-place is a perfectly viable option as long as the old one isn't interfering with anything. And has the advantage that, if necessary, you can hook it back up.
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