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I Want to Use Some Auto Fuses on my Solar Panels Wres for Safety (Read 9877 times)
Leslie Morris
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Re: I Want to Use Some Auto Fuses on my Solar Panels Wres for Safety
Reply #2 - Feb 19th, 2013 at 12:03am
 
Great info! Had a bad experience once when the car battery I was using was damaged, turned out some of the wires got shorted and since I did not put any fuse it all pretty much ruined it. Thanks!
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electron
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Re: I Want to Use Some Auto Fuses on my Solar Panels Wres for Safety
Reply #1 - Jan 7th, 2013 at 7:06am
 
Fuses always go as close to the batteries as possible. Not close enough for corrosion, that would create another problem and possible resistance later on.

The size of the fuse really depends on your inverter and maximum load (including surge) you will be putting on it. Check your inverter specs and see what they say is a proper fuse and wire size. The general math is watts / volts = amps and then you pick the next size up fuse, but never exceed the wire size rating of amps.

The idea is if you accidentally short out the battery wires, you protect the wire, that's what a fuse does. You want it to blow just before the wires start heating up too much.

Generally you only need fuses if you are working with a system that has batteries. Solar panels generally don't need a fuse, see below.

If you are using a Grid Tie Inverter (GTI) for solar, it already has a fuse on both sides AC and DC.

Remember that you can completely short out a solar panel with no damage and the wires should always be enough to withstand the amperage from your panels at their highest
shorted output (usually about 12 gauge (AWG) wire comes out of panels and you can short that all day long).

For example, if your panel output is 8A at it's shorted max (Isc) in perfect sunlight, you would never blow a 10A fuse if you shorted it. But yet #12 ga wire can handle 10A easily so you could send 8A of SHORTED PANELS through it all day long with no worries. No reason to protect the wire in that case (with no batteries involved).

But a car battery could send 500A down that same wire easily, and that's why you want a fuse at the battery in case of a short somewhere past the battery.

If you are mostly using GTIs, you might want a few extra BIG fuses around and ready when you set up or re-configure things in a power outage emergency using your batteries.

I have a youtube video showing a $11 fuse holder that Walmart sells and it's a pretty good unit. Hope this info helps.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qzyQ7CEf_J0

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Solar Freak
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I Want to Use Some Auto Fuses on my Solar Panels Wres for Safety
Jan 7th, 2013 at 6:42am
 
I need to put some fuse links on my solar panels and I was going to use in line auto fuse links like the ones you use on the car stereo the flat ones that plug in with two prongs. Should i put it at the end of the solar panels or right at the end just before the inverter? and should i use a fifteen amp
fuse for two 8 amp panels or a 20 amp fuse?
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