Saturday, September 13, 2014
BIANKA already has a bimini made up of solar panels. Two 75 watt 12 volt panels charge the house bank batteries and two 60 watt 48 volt panels help charge the propulsion bank. The panels have served me well but, this year I added an addition Engel Marine Fridge Freezer unit and the two 75 watt 12 volt panels could use a little help. I find myself having to fire up the Honda 2000 generator on occasion. Something I did rarely with just one Engel in operation. so I ordered a Renogy® 100W Monocrystalline Bendable Solar Panel to add a little more power for solar charging.
I should have it in a few days and will connect it into the 12 solar controller and see how much it helps with the additional load the new ENGEL refrigerator has added. What convinced me to try it was it's lightweight and the ability to move it around the boat in order to get access to the most sun. Unlike the panels on the solar bimini which are rigid frame units the new panel has some flexibility that allows it to conform to curved surfaces like the deck. It looks like it will help a lot. I'll report on how well the new Renogy panel works as soon as it arrives and I get a chance to play with it which should be in a few days.