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Solar panel problem
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userMackyjane
Posted: 4 January 2019 5:38 PM
Subject: Solar panel problem
 
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I have a fangpusun PR2020 controller with my solar panel. Even though it is sunny (we've just arrived in Spain, lucky us!) it's showing 0.0 from the solar panel, and 0.0 going into the battery. It was showing error code 06, but that has now disappeared. That error code indicates "no solar module connected". There is a 5amp fuse going into the top of the box. The fuse is fine, but when the fuse is removed the display shows what could be the correct readings. We are wondering if the fuse has something with the battery overload protection. Any ideas apart from the obvious to stay on sites with hook-up!
usermikefitz
Posted: 4 January 2019 8:53 PM
Subject: RE: Solar panel problem
 
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Location: Silves, Portugal


Fangpusun manufacture a range of solar charge controllers also sold in the EU under the Steca and Victron names, The PR2020 is a PWM controller. There are 3 pairs of terminations on the lower edge of the casing. The commissioning procedure is to connect the central pair to the battery with a suitable fuse at the battery end of the cable, followed by a connection to the solar panel, the left hand pair, taking care with polarity in each case.
The battery must be connected before any connection to the panel. There is a load connection, the right hand pair of connections, but these are normally unused in this type of installation, and in fact may cause malfunction if connected to the motorhome circuits.

The 5 amp fuse and its removal apparently restoring operation is confusing. There is no connection via the top of the PR2020 enclosure so I assume it connects to one of the lower 6 terminations. Identifying its purpose may be useful in resolving the problem.

As an initial investigation I suggest disconnecting the solar input cables followed by disconnecting one of the battery cables for a few moments, ( taking care not to short on the adjacent connection or case), if the fuse between the battery and controller can be identified, removing this for a short time would be a safer option. After the battery is connected and powering the unit, connect the solar panels. Ensure all the screw terminations are correctly made.

Check the voltage present at the terminals with a multimeter if available, the battery should read somewhere between 12 and 14 volts depending on loading and charge process, with a similar voltage on the solar terminals. To check the panels performance disconnect from the controller and measure the panel voltage directly on the wires. With daylight a voltage in excess of 17 volts should be indicated.

Hopefully the problem is something simple like a poor connection. Installation instructions are available on the internet if you need them, usually under the Steca label.

Mike

Edited by mikefitz 2019-01-04 8:54 PM
userMackyjane
Posted: 5 January 2019 5:59 AM
Subject: RE: Solar panel problem
 
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Thanks .mike. I think it sounds a bit too technical for me. I don't want to start disconnecting anything and potentially making things worse. It's not faulty wiring as it has worked very well for several years and none of the wires have been disturbed. We're wondering if perhaps all the sun in the summer has blown something! We're still travelling down at the moment. When we settle for a few days and after this weekend we'll have to call someone out or go somewhere.
userMackyjane
Posted: 7 January 2019 10:01 AM
Subject: RE: Solar panel problem
 
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Weve had a fiddle with the wires and it now appears to be working fine! Christmas gremlins I expect! Thanks for the advice, Mike. I will get it checked out if it happens again, and definitely when we get home.
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