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Old 01-04-2007, 12:00 AM   #1
Montana Fan
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Manakin-Sabot
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Solar System - the process begins

OK, I think I finally have mustered the courage to start the installation of my solar power system. I will be installing the panels this weekend, these will be 4 AMSolar 100 panels. I just wanted to say thanks to everyone on this site and say that between help here and other internet sites it would seem about anything can be accomplished. The big issue will be drilling that first hole in my clean smooth rubber roof. I plan on routing the panel wires down through the black water vent. This looks like it will work out pretty well. I cut into the vent pipe in the basement and inserted a T with a reducing bushing to allow for a wire clamp to be screwed into the exit side of the T. I have not cemented the pipe back in, and may not, in order to make it easy to fish the wire through the pipe. I am still waiting for my inverter which is back ordered so this will be a phased installation. I'll keep you all posted if your interested. Thanks again for your help. John
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Old 01-04-2007, 01:28 AM   #2
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Hmmm, vent pipe as cable run... sounds like a quick way to get past living quarters, hope it is single cord (you don't want to affect the vent capacity) and pvc insulation (long life in this location), with good seal in basement! What are doing for solar panel placement? Are they going to be permanent fixtures on your roof?
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Old 01-04-2007, 01:30 AM   #3
stiles watson
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Hope all goes well. Awaiting your report.
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Old 01-04-2007, 07:01 AM   #4
The Oldguard
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John, No need to run inside the vent pipe. drill hole next to vent pipe on roof run wire along pipe and run through storage area into front compartment and finish hook-up, just make sure you seal good around wire on roof.
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Old 01-04-2007, 08:07 AM   #5
Steve and Brenda
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You'd be smart to place your exposed roof wires in a shell to protect them from UV rays, squirrels, tree branches, etc. PVC conduit would work nice for you.
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Old 01-04-2007, 11:29 PM   #6
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Chuck, the panels will be placed permanently on the roof with tilt bars for Winter. I will place all four of them so the center point of all four is in line with the vent cap. This is to use the shortest amount of wire possible, but I will make sure they are far enough appart so as to not shade another panel when tilted.
As far as running the wire down the side of the vent pipe, quite frankly that scares me to drill a hole in the roof without knowing where it goes. I tried to shine a light up the pipe side from the basement but it looked like the pipe was touching against the wall as it went up. In other words it just didn't appear to be a clean open channel next to the pipe which concerned me that it would be drilling a long way before seeing any open space. The idea of using the vent pipe is not mine, you can see the approach in the article the "12 Volt Side of Life" http://bart.ccis.com/home/mnemeth/12volt/12volta.htm Thanks again, John
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