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Old 10-19-2015, 04:49 PM   #1
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Battery equalization

Does anyone know if ETI sets the Samlex Solar charge controller to "automatic" equalization or "manual" equalization when they are completing the solar option installation? As our 17B was "pre-owned" we did not have the benefit of an "orientation".

Fred Alexander
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Old 10-19-2015, 07:13 PM   #2
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Is ETI now using a Samlex Solar charge controller for their solar installations? Which model?

We had ETI put on a panel about a year ago and it came with a Go Power charge controller. The first went south soon after installation and the replacement, second one, just followed it over the hill. These had a pretty rudimentary changing scheme but generally kept the battery up. I just replaced the second one with a Blue Sky SC30 controller. It should work better but I have yet to take a trip with it.

The Blue Sky disables equalization as delivered for safety, i.e. someone might hook up to sealed batteries and not re-program it. But when equalization is done it applies 15.2V for 2 hours. They indicate at least 3.5A is required for each 100 Ahr battery capacity. Our panel might do this for our single 85 Ahr battery, I doubt it could keep this up for two batteries.

I think the 120v/12v panel is a WFCO WF-8900? If this is correct I think it has a 3 stage battery charger but doesn't do any equalization. Hard to find good specs on this converter/charger though.

But back to your original questions, I have no idea.

Thanks.
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Old 10-20-2015, 10:59 AM   #3
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Hugh,
I can relate to what you say. I also have installed the Blue Sky SC30 solar controller. I have programmed the equalization charge for the recommended 15.6 volts for two hours. With my 120 watt solar panel I do not think I have a prayer of achieving enough voltage. I even have a difficult time getting to the Interstate recommended (dual six volt) charge rate of 15.3 volts.

I have never found a 110 volt charger that will achieve the charge rates that Interstate recommends, much less the equalization level. To date I have only seen three models of solar controllers capable of getting to that level. Again, these are the recommend rates from Interstate and for most users they are shocked, you are gonna fry your battery, is a common statement. Check the Interstate web site for your dual sixes charge rate, I did not believe the web site and called engineering at Interstate, same answer, New battery chemistry requires high charge rates. Trojan is close to those same levels with their six volt batteries.

Is Your Battery Really Charged? provides more information on this topic.
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Old 10-20-2015, 11:06 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fbalexander View Post
Does anyone know if ETI sets the Samlex Solar charge controller to "automatic" equalization or "manual" equalization when they are completing the solar option installation? As our 17B was "pre-owned" we did not have the benefit of an "orientation".

Fred Alexander
I believe it can be set up to do either. Go to samlex website and check the manual.
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Old 10-20-2015, 12:13 PM   #5
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Oct 2015 - ETI controller model

Our 17 is a Sept. 2015 model, and has the
Samlex SSC-30AB, matched with their 150 W panel.

Here's where the manual is found.
30 Amp 12V24V Samlex Solar Charge Controller | SCC-30AB
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 097.jpg (116.8 KB, 25 views)
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Old 10-20-2015, 12:21 PM   #6
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And then there is BatteryMinders take on equalization cycles. Avoid Battery Sulfation Based on the fact that high temperatures are listed most everywhere as a cause of shortened battery life, some reading on the web, and emails back and forth with a BatteryMinder tech, I decided to give their method a try on my 5+ year old Interstates. Only time will tell I guess.
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Old 10-20-2015, 03:36 PM   #7
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And then there is BatteryMinders take on equalization cycles. Avoid Battery Sulfation Based on the fact that high temperatures are listed most everywhere as a cause of shortened battery life, some reading on the web, and emails back and forth with a BatteryMinder tech, I decided to give their method a try on my 5+ year old Interstates. Only time will tell I guess.
A very good choice !
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Old 10-21-2015, 11:40 AM   #8
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Battery equalization

Quote:
Originally Posted by dfandrews View Post
Our 17 is a Sept. 2015 model, and has the
Samlex SSC-30AB, matched with their 150 W panel.

Here's where the manual is found.
30 Amp 12V24V Samlex Solar Charge Controller | SCC-30AB
Thanks Don! Our 17B is a April 2015 model and was outfitted with the Samlex SSC-30AB as well. I'm thinking that it would make sense that ETI leave the equalization in "Manual" mode and let the new owner figure things out. I'm also getting the impression that most owners with the dual 6's and solar just leave things alone and don't "mess" with equalization. As I have no experience in solar systems I don't know whether I should equalize once a year or once a month or just not at all. Suggestions anyone... from the group who are "educated" on this topic?

"Solar Dummy"
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Old 10-21-2015, 01:29 PM   #9
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The folks at AM solar set all there Controllers to manual equalization . They recommend for my 2 6 volt interstate batteries be equalized twice a year.
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Old 10-21-2015, 02:29 PM   #10
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Has anyone looked into replacing the changer/converter in the WFCO? It may be possible to find one with a good, maybe adjustable, changing scheme and that does equalization. That would more consistently apply enough power to equalize any number of batteries.

I'd be surprised if anyone is boon docking for six month periods without hooking up to shore power. You gotta wash clothes once in a while.

Thanks.
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