Expired Hot Deals

[Canadian Tire] 100w solar panel kit - $150 (for RV)

  • Last Updated:
  • Oct 5th, 2018 10:11 am
[OP]
Newbie
Feb 14, 2013
29 posts
57 upvotes
saskatoon

[Canadian Tire] 100w solar panel kit - $150 (for RV)

This is on the front page of the flier and it is also posted in the http section but I wanted to discuss this hot deal to give it the attention it deserves.

What makes the deal good is that each kit comes with a 30 amp charge controller which should be enough to connect 3-4 of these 100W panels. Then you can sell the extra controllers. Canadian tire charges $130 for a similar 30amp controller, so they should be worth a few $$ on kijiji. I am not sure how many panels are required to run an average RV yet but it seems like 300W is a good start (3 kits). This is a great price to get started, probably on sale since it is the end of the RV season. This kit is intended for charging a 12v battery bank, such as 2 or 4 costco 6v golf batteries.

One criticism in the reviews is that the cables included are too short, but of course you will need to get more wire to combine the panels and install them into an RV. I see a product called a solar hub for $50 at Canadian tire which can connect multiple solar panels. Connecting only 100W x 2 can be done by splitting wires but connecting 3 or more may require some more components, maybe a bigger diode?

If you are thinking about adding some solar, this is a great price point.
*NOTE: mounting clips not included. Some ppl use 3M VCT tape to install the panels cheaply. I think I would like to keep mine portable in case there are a lot of trees around where I parked the RV.
50 replies
Deal Expert
User avatar
Feb 8, 2014
15035 posts
4336 upvotes
$1.50/watt is a very good price, and including a charge controller is very nice.
Just remember to buy deep cycle lead acid batteries and try not to fully drain them often and recharge ASAP after use.
The beatings will continue until morale improves
Deal Addict
User avatar
Dec 19, 2007
3079 posts
1403 upvotes
Manitouwadge, Ontari…
lol, My poor escape battery sucks I should mount this on the roof of it lol.
---
Newbie
Apr 20, 2017
76 posts
25 upvotes
Montreal
Controller is PWM, not MPPT. Still a good deal, though. Thanks OP!
[OP]
Newbie
Feb 14, 2013
29 posts
57 upvotes
saskatoon
contva wrote:
Sep 23rd, 2018 9:55 am
Controller is PWM, not MPPT. Still a good deal, though. Thanks OP!
None of the 100W kits I saw had MPPT for some reason. Maybe they are a lot more expensive.
I did some research and the MPPT is what you use if you have partial shading on your panels. This is likely the reason that MPPT is not included in the kit, because with small panels you are not going to have shading issues like you would in a big installation. PWM should be just fine.
Sr. Member
Jan 30, 2010
565 posts
256 upvotes
North Battleford
The advantage with mppt charge controller you get the full output of the panel i.e. 18 volt x 5.5 amps = 100 watts. With the pvm the output panel voltage will be the same as the battery voltage 12 volt x 5.5 amp = 66 watts.
Newbie
User avatar
Mar 18, 2017
67 posts
121 upvotes
Lead acid batteries are old school. No electric car (Tesla, Leaf, Bolt etc.) use lead acid. Lithium-ion is the way to go.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Feb 11, 2007
8292 posts
6799 upvotes
Oakville
Anyone know the physical size of the panels?
Deal Expert
User avatar
Feb 8, 2014
15035 posts
4336 upvotes
NumbNuts wrote:
Sep 23rd, 2018 12:05 pm
Lead acid batteries are old school. No electric car (Tesla, Leaf, Bolt etc.) use lead acid. Lithium-ion is the way to go.
So far there are not many cost effective turnkey lithium ion solutions.
Your correct that lead acid are old school but the new school has not percolated into commodity units where you can go to a specialty store and buy 12V (x)AH batteries and have commodity charge controllers run them.

The price is often several times lead acid and the only solutions are ready made ones, cars with batteries built in, power tools designed to use grid power and have the circuitry custom designed for them or very expensive Tesla Powerwalls which are back ordered for years. There are a few minor players i am leaving out but they are minor players that are hard to find and far more expensive then even the Tesla offerings in most cases.

In time this will change but today we are not there yet.
The beatings will continue until morale improves
Deal Addict
User avatar
May 16, 2011
2215 posts
1379 upvotes
Clarington
There are places around the GTA where you can get 300W solar panel + 30A MPPT controller for under $400.

Would probably be a better idea than buying the 3 kits OP.
Member
Sep 22, 2014
302 posts
93 upvotes
Ottawa, ON
My trailer is equipped for pre solar hook up. How do I attach one of these to my camper? It's an apex nano 208bhs.
Member
User avatar
Jun 13, 2004
209 posts
37 upvotes
In a nutshell MPPT controllers are about 30% more efficient the PWM. But frankly for one panel that is only 100 watts, PWM is perfectly adequate.
Member
Dec 25, 2003
355 posts
188 upvotes
Saskatoon
zoso454 wrote:
Sep 23rd, 2018 11:24 am
The advantage with mppt charge controller you get the full output of the panel i.e. 18 volt x 5.5 amps = 100 watts. With the pvm the output panel voltage will be the same as the battery voltage 12 volt x 5.5 amp = 66 watts.
Thanks for putting that so clearly. The only thing that I question is the 12V calculation. A car charges up to 14.7V. So 14.7 V x 5.5 A = 81 Watts. There is a 12V output on the controller and I havent checked that voltage yet. Also there are 2 USB ports which I havent had any sunshine to test either. So with a 19% benefit of MPPT over PWM remaining, that dwindles further during the morning and evening when the panel is below 18 volts. PWM doesnt care about the lower voltage at that time, as long as it is higher than 12V. So the 30% advantage of MPPT is actually how much?

Am I incorrect about anything here? I am not an expert, just giving my best calculations.
Member
Dec 25, 2003
355 posts
188 upvotes
Saskatoon
engineered wrote:
Sep 23rd, 2018 12:07 pm
Anyone know the physical size of the panels?
Roughly 2' by 3' and they are 1.5" thick. Weight 17 lbs.
Member
Dec 25, 2003
355 posts
188 upvotes
Saskatoon
Bawler wrote:
Sep 23rd, 2018 12:12 pm
There are places around the GTA where you can get 300W solar panel + 30A MPPT controller for under $400.

Would probably be a better idea than buying the 3 kits OP.
That would be competitive pricing if I cannot resell the PWM controllers for much. I like the smaller panels though, I took a quick look at RV roof and I can fit 7 of these pretty easily between vents, A/C, etc. Since it is MPPT, that may even be more amps for the $$$. I was unable to find any deals that were competitive with the Canadian Tire deal.
That is a heck of a deal though, under $400 Bawler. I am not in Ont but I would like to take a look. In Calgary a 300W MPPT system is over $700.

Top