Delivery

3-5 working days from date of order, though often sooner. Most kits are made to order but are dispatched with a courier for next working day delivery as soon as completed. European orders can take up to 2 weeks but usually it takes 5-7 working days. There are extra handling charges for non-UK orders to allow for packing the panel kits in wooden frames. All rates are quoted at checkout before you pay.

Cancellation, Refund and Returns

Your rights to return goods are protected under the Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013.

You are entitled to cancel your order and return the goods within 14 working days of  receipt of the order for a full refund, including the cost of delivery. Do this by contacting us by email and quoting the order number supplied to you. Your refund will be paid within 30 days. You are responsible for the cost and risk of loss or damage when returning the goods, so you should take out enough postal insurance to cover their value. This cancellation policy does not affect your rights when we are at fault for example, if goods are faulty or  not as described. 

Any goods returned should be in saleable condition.

Privacy Policy

Solar Camper Solutions do not disclose buyers' information to third parties other than your address, email and phone number to couriers services for delivery of your goods.

Cookies

Cookies are used on this shopping site to keep track of the contents of your shopping cart, to store delivery addresses if the address book is used and to store your details if you select the 'Remember Me' / 'Create Accound' Option. They are also used after you have logged on as part of that process.

‘Cookies’ are small text files that are sorted by the browser on your computer or portable device.  Each cookie is unique to its web browser and provides a memory for the website, enabling it to anonymously recognise a user and tailor its results accordingly.Although it is likely to affect your website experience and reduce the number of functions available to you, such as placing orders, all browsers allow you to alter the cookie preferences. These settings can be found in your ‘options’ or ‘preferences’ menu of your browser. Data collected by this site is used to:a. Take and fulfil customer orders.
b. Administer and enhance the site and service.
c. Disclose information to third-parties - but only for goods delivery purposes. 
d. To ensure your purchasing experience is smooth and secure.
e. To gather anonymous analytical information, such as the number of unique users.  Solar Camper Solutions, May 2017

 

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

- Is it easy to install? Is there a video?

- Yes - I provide full instructions covering all the installation options with colour photos for teh Mazda Bongo. One of my happy customers has made a video of his Bongo installation: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pktEeRDCfBw

The VW flat panel is also surprisingly easy to install. The kit comes with colour printed instructions and all the materials you will need to install it. The installation is designed with the novice in mind. The adhesive used is NOT fast setting, and wipes away with a cloth, so you can clean up any mess you might make, though the installation method is pretty mess-proof.

- I already have a split charging relay system installed, will the solar charger work with this?

- yes it will. The solar charger / regulator only charges the battery when needed, it won't charge your battery once you are driving as the split charger will take over.

- Can I run mains 240v appliances off the solar power with an inverter?

- yes you can, although inverters are not very efficient and you are better off buying 12v equivalent appliances. You connect your inverter to your battery and let the solar power charge the battery.

- Can I charge both my leisure battery AND my starter battery with the solar kit?

- yes you can - we provide enough cables and connectors so that you can, by reconnecting one cable, switch the solar charger over to your starter battery. Great for getting you out of a situation where you have accidentally flattened your starter battery! We can also, at a small extra charge, supply you with a special charger that charges both batteries, though under normal circumstances, it will spend 99.9% of it's time charging the leisure battery as your starter battery will be full nearly all of the time - as you have a leisure battery... (dual battery charger is between £20 and £50 extra depending on the model. Contact us for a quote)

- I would like you to install the kit for me - where are you and what is the cost?

- I'm based near Taunton, in Somerset. Installation is £80 for the Bongo kit which includes a permanent installation with hidden wiring throughout the vehicle. VW T4/T5 ultra-slim panel installation is available on request depending on the weather. Contact us for a quote.

- I have roof bars fitted - is your kit compatible?

- Bongo - Usually, yes. If you have the bars that bolt into the existing roof mounting holes and run up the length of the vehicle then you simply slide the solar panel bracket under the roof bar rear mounting "foot" and refasten it using your existing bolt. If you have bars than clip into the guttering and run across the width of the vehicle then they usually clear the panel. If not, you can just slide the rear one forwards a bit to accommodate the solar panel.

- VW - usually yes. Most VW roof bars are adjustable so you can slide them fore and aft to clear the panel. Check our panel dimensions on the VW page.

- I have heard that the flat solar panels overheat - is this true?

- No they don't overheat. What they do do is get hotter than rigid framed panels as they have no ventilation underneath. This usually reduces the performance of the panel by around 10% in hot weather. In cool weather it makes no difference. When you bond the panel to your roof you can leave ventilation gaps in the adhesive to help. This is explained in the printed instructions. 

 

 

With a 100 Watt solar panel you can run all of your 12v appliances indefinitely in the summer. Solar panels also produce power in the winter unless it is very overcast. No more need for electric hook-ups - camp in the pretty spots!

Typically, during the day, the solar panel charges your leisure battery (or your starter battery if you don't have a leisure battery) and then when it's full any excess power goes straight to your appliances. At night time, when the panel is no longer producing any power, your appliances run off the battery until the panel recharges it the next morning, and the cycle continues.

The trick is to use a panel large enough to get the battery charged fast in the morning, and then provide enough power to run things like your fridge, phone chargers etc during the day, leaving the battery full and ready to go back into service at night time. I have extensively tested 80 Watt panels and they produce enough power to keep up with 12v compressor fridges with power to spare. But remember, this kit is 100 Watts !

Keeping the beers cool

In my tests my battery ended up with a greater charge at the end of each day than it started with! - This was with running a 12v Waeco fridge, plus other things like phone charging, listening to music etc. With a 100 Watt panel you can camp in the summer, running a fridge, indefinitely with power to spare!

With current technology, 100 Watts is the largest panel that fits on the Bongo roof without covering the sunroof, is not too heavy, and does not protrude from the sides.

Below is a real (I recorded this in my Bongo) data log graph of the voltage of a leisure battery with a 12v compressor fridge running full time, cold enough for ice in the freezer section. This was "only" with an 80 Watt panel.

As you can see, the battery ends the day at midnight with the same (actually a little more) charge as is started the day with at 00:01 am - and this was in April 2012! - not June or July! (the downward spikes on the graph are when the fridge switches on for a few minutes until it's thermostat switches it off again) . In summer it is not unusual for the battery to end the day with more charge than it started with, and to be up to over 13 volts by 10/11 am.

 

All of this solar kits we sell come with a 30Amp PWM charger as standard. This is the box that turns the solar power into something your batterie/s can handle and charges them correctly.

But there is a better option - MPPT. MPPT chargers typically produce 20% to 30% more charging power from the same panel than a PWM charger (in our experience 20% is realistic). At the bottom of this page is a technical explanation why.

The charger upgrades we offer are:

Above is the 10Amp MPPT charger with built in LCD display. The black LCD on the right is the optional "external/remote LCD" display. You can buy the charger upgrade with or without the remote LCD which shows the same information as the charger's built in display, but with more information on the screen at one time. It also means you can install the charger in a cupboard and flush mount the remote LCD in the side of a cupboard/wall/surface (the LCD is shown in it's surface mounting box, but it can be removed and mounted almost flush). It links to the charger with one slim network cable.

Also available is a 250 Watt version that you will need if you buy a 200 watt solar panel system. It's the same, just larger, and can handle 20 amps.

Above is the Victron 75/15 MPPT charger. What is different about this charger is that there is no LCD display at all. You can access charging information and configure the charger via your smartphone with the supplied app (iOS & Android). The charger is highly configurable via the app - right down to how the charging cycle work!

This charger is a good solution if you want to hide your charger and don't want to cut big holes for an LCD display/control panel. The disadvantage is you can't see your battery voltage or charging status at a glance. You have to open the app on your phone or tablet.

This charger can handle 100W or 200W solar systems.

MPPT Explained:

An MPPT charger works differently from a PWM charger. Solar panels typically produce 12-20volts. The voltage goes down as the sun diminishes, and as the panel gets hot. To charge a leisure battery the volatge of the charger needs to be more than the voltage of the leisure battery -  approx 13volts. This is why solar panels produce up to 20volts, so there is some room to play with. We always recommend MPPT chargers with slimline panels as they priduce a higher voltage, which suits MPPT better - you waste less energy.

When a panel is produces, say, 18 volts, a PWM charger "throws away" the spare 5 volts. With MPPT the charger turns the spare voltage into charging current. The voltage lowers but the amperage increases. The upshot is that, in ideal conditions, an MPPT charger can extract an extra 30% charging power from the same solar panel. Ideal conditions are bright sun and low temperatures - which means winter, or bright but cool days - i.e. frequent British Springs/Autumns. 

An MPPT charger is the way to extract every last drop of energy from your solar panel and are particularly recommended for ultra-slim panels.

 

Contact Us

Address:
Heatherton Park House, TA4 1EU

Mail:
enquiries@solarcampersolutions.co.uk

 

About Our Shop

SCS have been making and installing solar kits for over 4 years