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Old 06-14-2021, 08:46 PM   #1
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slowandsteady's Avatar
City: North Kingstown, RI
Vessel Model: Mainship 34 III
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 178
Grounding Solar

Do I need to ground the solar panel frames to the engine block?
There is a ground screw on the Victron MPPT charge controller, I assume I ground that to the engine block as well.
In the disconnect box between the panels and the controller, there is a ground lug. Even though there is just a pos. and a neg. running to the disconnect, do I have to ground the box as well? Can I run a wire from the panels, to the lug in the enclosure, to the MPPT and then the engine block?
So many questions....
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Old 06-14-2021, 10:27 PM   #2
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City: Port of Everett, WA
Vessel Name: Salish Star
Vessel Model: Nordic Tug 32
Join Date: Jul 2018
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When we installed our system the cable to connect to the panel included a ground wire. And we used it. Also grounded the MPPT box. in a Victron diagram it shows a protective device before and after the MPPT. Thought it might be overkill, but installed them none the less. Unfortunately, can't put my hands on the Victron installation diagram, but it's on their site.

One of the more challenging aspects of our install was getting the battery parameters in the Victron MPPT controllers to work with the Victron BVM battery monitor.

For what it's worth.
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Old 06-15-2021, 07:13 AM   #3
City: Rochester, NY
Vessel Name: Hour Glass
Vessel Model: Chris Craft Catalina 381
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I didn't ground my panels when I installed them. But there's also no grounded metal within reach of the panels, so if the frames became hot somehow, it wouldn't present a shock risk except maybe if the boat were soaking wet with salt water.

The manual for the Victron 100/30s I'm using suggests grounding the solar panel frames for lightning protection. And it mentions that you can ground the chassis of the MPPT, but there's no terminal for it on the 100/30 and they don't show a chassis ground in the wiring diagram.
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