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  • Victron SmartSolar MPPT 75/10

    Good evening, I have on my camper 2 x 100w panels and the Victron SmartSolar MPPT 75/10 controller with Bluetooth and a lot of info on the app. Do really need one of the Victron battery monitors?
    Mark,
    Roseville, Ca

    2009 AF 990 camper, 2.5 Onan, 200w solar,
    1500w inverter, Camco cat heater, foam mattress https://www.nroa2003.com/forum/core/...lies/smile.gif

    2007 Chevy 3500 Classic LBZ, Aero Tank-62 gal.
    Bilstein 24 shocks, Torklift StableLoad.TorkLift Tie Downs. Edge CTS-2 Evo.Tire-Safeguard TPMS
    Reese Class V hitch, Front hitch.
    ’06 GL1800, ‘75 Norton, ‘73 Honda CB500k, ‘74Yamaha DT360, ‘76 Bultaco, 68 Yamaha YG5T, 99 KDX220.

  • #2
    I'm not a solar expert but what I tell folks is to get the battery monitor first to find out what kind of load history you have. Then build the solar system to fill that load profile.

    But since you have the Victron MPPT controller and you haven't missed any of the data that the battery monitor can provide I would say don't get it.

    I will also say that I'm kind of an information junkie - I want to know as much as I can about our battery system so I like having the Victron battery monitor but then I started with the battery monitor also.

    The only thing I can think that you might miss is the alarm function on the monitor, I don't think the MPPT controller has that. I do know that the MPPT controller and the battery monitor talk to each other. I think the temperature is sensed by the monitor and sent to the MPPT controller.

    My 2-cents is to not buy it until you really find a need or just want more info.

    Bill

    Bill, Mary, and Scottie
    2015 RAM 3500 Crew Cab, Long Bed, 6.7 Cummins/Aisin, SRW, Hensley BD-3 Hitch
    2017 AF 27-5L
    http://badges.fuelly.com/images/smallsig-us/719790.png

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    • #3
      I'd say you definitely don't need a battery monitor, because the solar controller will charge the battery based on its estimates of battery voltage and temperature.

      For a 10A controller, the voltage estimate should be decent if the controller is connected directly to the battery (or close to it).

      The Victron controller can only use its own temperature as a best guess for battery temperature, so that estimate could be substantially off if the controller is inside and the battery is outside, for example. That will have a minor effect on the ideal charge voltage, but it's not likely to be a big deal for 10A charging.

      Victron now has a Bluetooth battery temp and voltage monitor for about $40, so that's a viable option if you needed more accurate charging without a battery monitor.

      I'm like BZawlocki in the sense that knowing my battery's state of charge (and charge history) is very important to me, so in my case, I need a battery monitor.

      On a related solar note: a 75/10 controller will limit charging power to about 145W (10.0A at 14.5V) in ideal conditions. That's not a big deal, since 200W of panels will generally deliver less than 145W on typical days, but it may matter to you, if you didn't already know about it.
      2017 Arctic Fox 25Y
      Chassis: Firestone Transforce HT LT225/75-16, Blue Ox SwayPro 1500, EezTire TPMS, BAL 28217 recessed tire carrier, 40K miles
      Electrical: EMS-HW30C surge protector, 800W solar, Victron BMV-712, Victron MPPT 100/50, Victron MultiPlus 3000, Fullriver 415 Ah AGM

      2013 Silverado 2500HD LML Duramax, manual 4x4, crew cab, std box, added 2nd alternator and 2-gauge charge path, 130K miles

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      • #4
        Well, I'll give a slightly different answer and if I'm incorrect I'm sure someone will correct me. You don't need a BVM for the solar install, the controller will take care of that. With a Smart BVM using a battery temp sensor you can get more accurate charging since the solar controller has the battery temp but as Yabbut noted you can get that with Vitron's Bluetooth module. The reason you want a BVM is if you boondock a lot you want to know the state of charge of your batteries with more accuracy then the factory installed state of charge lights. The Solar controller can show you that the batteries are near full charge if you see it go into absorption or float mode in the charge data, but if your battery usage is high enough and solar conditions are poor, you'll only be able to see that your putting charge into your batteries and you won't know what your true state of charge is until they are either back to near full or unfortunately dead. Sort of like not having a gas gauge, you can pour gas in everyday but unless that tank get full, you never know for sure if you have enough gas for that next long drive. So having the BVM depends on how strongly you want to know the state of your battery charge and how import it is to you not to run your batteries dead. We camped and boondocked for 20 years without one so it can be done, now that I have one I would never go back to running without one.

        PS: I should add it's very much depended on your use model if you need the BVM, if you tend to always go to a area with good solar and your solar charge is generally greater then your power usage, you wouldn't need a BVM. If your like us and tend to go to a lot of forested areas where you can't count on solar then a BVM is a great add.
        2016 Ram 3500 Longhorn: 4X4, Crew Cab, LB, DRW, 6.7 Cummins/Aisin, 3.73, Auto Level Rear Air Suspension, Reese 20k Elite Hitch, Amp Bedstep 2, Aero 70 Gal Underbed Fuel Tank
        2016 AF 27-5L: 10 Cu Ft Fridge, Thomas Payne Sofa w/air Mattress,15K AC, 2" Receiver, Victron Multiplus 3000 inverter with CCGX Color Control panel, BMV 712 Battery Monitor and Smart Solar MPPT 100|50 controller with 610W of Solar

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        • #5
          Thanks for all the information, i don't think I'll buy one, at least for now.
          I may eventually go with 200w more panel and a larger controller. I currently using the factory pre-wired wires for the 2 x100w panels now. I couldn't tell for sure but I thing the factory wire in 12G going to the controller. We aren't electrical hogs but nice to have the extra power.

          She can'nae take any more, captain”,“SCOTTY, I NEED MORE POWER".
          Mark,
          Roseville, Ca

          2009 AF 990 camper, 2.5 Onan, 200w solar,
          1500w inverter, Camco cat heater, foam mattress https://www.nroa2003.com/forum/core/...lies/smile.gif

          2007 Chevy 3500 Classic LBZ, Aero Tank-62 gal.
          Bilstein 24 shocks, Torklift StableLoad.TorkLift Tie Downs. Edge CTS-2 Evo.Tire-Safeguard TPMS
          Reese Class V hitch, Front hitch.
          ’06 GL1800, ‘75 Norton, ‘73 Honda CB500k, ‘74Yamaha DT360, ‘76 Bultaco, 68 Yamaha YG5T, 99 KDX220.

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