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Old 08-03-2019, 09:43 AM   #1
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Portable solar panels

We decided to pull the trigger and bought a Highlander. We will give you an update on how it tows after we pick up our trailer in Oct. All of your feedback has been so helpful. Thanks!
We ordered the option to have a portable solar panel in addition to the fixed, and would like to know what is a good brand and where to purchase ?
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Old 08-03-2019, 11:20 AM   #2
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We purchased a Renogy 100w folding panel w/o controller from Amazon along with the cables to connect it to the Zamp port which ETI installed during our build. Have only had occasion to use it once so far and it worked as expected. It came with a nice "semi-hardside suitcase" which holds the 2 panels and protects them while we are on the road. Hopefully some of the solar experts on the forum can respond with other alternatives for you. We chose this one because of the reviews, the travel case and Amazon shipping.
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Old 08-03-2019, 11:45 AM   #3
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We have the Renogy 100 watt solar suitcase . It was purchased for use with our 17ft Casita SD . Works extremely well with our Casita , have never used it with our Escape but I assume it would work equally as well .
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Old 08-03-2019, 12:09 PM   #4
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We have the Lensun 100w portable solar panel. Very light, rugged, and fits in the wardrobe of the 21'. Since we bought ours, they have come out with 160w and 200w versions as well.

https://www.amazon.com/Lensun-Foldab.../dp/B071FSLZGT
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Old 08-03-2019, 12:37 PM   #5
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I have the Lensun as well. Lightweight, effective, so far durable.
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Old 08-03-2019, 02:28 PM   #6
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If you already have the solar from the factory, how do you hook up the folding panel. We are getting ready to order a E21 and this was one of my questions
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Old 08-03-2019, 03:37 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kodakajika View Post
If you already have the solar from the factory, how do you hook up the folding panel. We are getting ready to order a E21 and this was one of my questions
It depends -

If you use the controller on the portable panel, you need to connect it to the battery side of the trailer's built in controller (this is assuming that you ordered a rooftop panel). If you didn't order a rooftop panel but did order a SAE (ZAMP) connector on the trailer to connect a portable panel, it will be wired to the batteries so the panel controller will work.

If you have a rooftop panel & an Escape provided controller, and ordered a exterior SAE connector, it will be wired to the input of the trailer's solar controller. For your portable panel to work, you must bypass the portable panel's controller.

You could connect from the portable panel's controller to the batteries, but on a 21, with the batteries under the seat, that would be a PIA.
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Old 08-03-2019, 07:10 PM   #8
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IF I had to use external solar with my 21, I would install a marine powerpole jack near the battery vent, and wire this to the existing controller's solar input. I'd use blue+yellow or something instead of black+red, so it wouldn't be confused with +12V ... actually, I might get a dual PP outlet, and have a black+red wired directly to the battery (with a 30A fuse), and a (other colors) for the solar controller. I'd probably also replace my PWM GoPower solar controller with a MPPT if I was doing this, so I could tap 12V outside the trailer to power DC stuffs (I have made a series of PP to cigar plug, PP to SAE, etc connector pigtails for various purposes).
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Old 08-03-2019, 10:43 PM   #9
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With a Zamp port & Renogy portable I had to reverse the polarity on the panel.
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Old 08-04-2019, 12:36 AM   #10
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is the Zamp connector an SAE? I hate those things, there's no standard for the pin or the socket being + and -, in fact, the two that plug together are opposite, one side has an exposed +, while the other side has an exposed -
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