This system was built to power a 2018 Ford Transit High Roof (148″ WB). Power consumers include a TF130 refrigerator, MaxxFan, Espar heater, two-zones of 10 total puck lights, miscellaneous DC loads, and the occasional 700w kitchen appliance. Jeff purchased 4x 100w solar panels to be mounted on his Flatline roof rack, along with 4-to-1 adapters to deliver 400w @ 12v.
The System Specifications
- 3x 100AH Renogy Lithium Iron Phosphate Battery with Self-Heating (RBT100LFP12SH-US)
- Renogy DCC50S 50-Amp DC-DC Alternator Charger with MPPT Solar Charge Controller
- Renogy 2000w Pure Sine Inverter (RNG-INVT-2000-12V-P2-US)
- 200 amp ANL fuse for protection of system.
- Household-style circuit breakers for solar, alternator, charger, and 12-circuit DC load panel.
- 2GA Interconnect wiring, 2GA busbar wiring, 4GA for inverter, 8GA wiring elsewhere.
- Renogy Bluetooth Hub for Bluetooth Monitoring
- Victron BMV-700 Physical Battery Monitor (Shunt-Based)
The Wiring Diagram
- Your inverter has an “ON-OFF” switch, you can run this cable to the inverter, plug it into the RJ12 port, and set the switch on the inverter to “REMOTE”. Alternatively, you can also have the inverter always on, or control it manually.
- Your Victron monitor also has a long tether attached, this plug in to the bottom side of the shunt on the negative post (far right side of system). When connecting, you may be prompted for system size – set this to 300AH.
How to connect a chassis ground (required for alternator charging)
I have included a ~3″ double 4GA cable that can be used to make a chassis ground connection. Alternatively, you can run a wire from the starter battery’s negative post. This wire should be the same gauge or larger than the wire run from the customer connection point on the driver’s seat for alternator charging. In my Transit, I simply scraped away some paint and used a stainless steel bolt, lock washer, and nut through a metal part of the chassis and this was sufficient.
How to connect a solar panel to your system
Once the positive and negative wires have been run into the van, connecting them is pretty straightforward.
- Remove the 4 Phillips screws holding the circuit breaker faceplate on.
- Run the Positive wire into the breaker box, cut to length, and strip a half inch or so.
- Insert it into the leftmost circuit breaker at the top, then tighten the Phillips screw securely.
For the negative wire from the solar panels:
- Remove the two black acorn nuts holding the cover on the negative bus bar.
- Terminate the negative wire with a 5/16″ or 3/8″ ring terminal and secure it to any of the positions on the bus bar.
- Note: it is OK to stack terminals on this bus bar.
How to connect your starter battery to your system (for alternator charging)
Ford includes a “customer connection point” that is fused at 60 amps on the van’s side. This is suitable for use with your alternator charger (which charges @ 50 amps). You’ll find this terminal on the driver’s side of the driver’s seat, under a plastic cover. Run an 8 gauge (or thicker) wire from here to the circuit breaker box on your electrical system.
Just like with the solar panel wire, strip a section and insert it into the breaker labeled “ALT” below. Tighten the Phillips screw securely.
How to connect DC loads (lights, fridge, etc.)
DC loads (positive and negative) will connect to the 12-circuit fuse block. Insert a fuse appropriate for the load (refer to the product’s documentation to determine this value), then connect the positive wire next to the fuse, and the negative wire to any of the positions along the negative bus bar on the bottom.
How to connect your phone to the Renogy Bluetooth Hub system
Download “Renogy DC Home” from the Apple or Google Play store. Upon launching, you’ll be prompted to create an account. Once you’ve done this, your screen should appear like below, prompting you to add your first device. Tap the “+” in the top right.
This process must only be done the first time you’re setting up your device. Unplug the RJ45/Ethernet cable from the DCC50S charger from the Renogy Hub, leaving only the cable from the batteries connected.
On the following screen, press “Hub Mode” in the top right.
Press Next, tick the box, and press Next again. You should be prompted with a screen like below.
- Tap the BT-TH device
- When prompted to select the device type, choose “Battery”
- You’ll then be asked if you have one or multiple batteries, press “multiple”.
- When prompted with “Discover 3 batteries”, press “Confirm”.
At this point, unplug the RJ45/Ethernet coming from the batteries and plug back in the DCC50S Charger’s cable. Repeat these steps, but choose “DCC” as device”. Confirm to add. After doing this, you can plug the batteries back in and you should have visibility to all 3 batteries + your charger in the Renogy app.
My apologies – I am also not a fan of this process, but you should only have to go through it once.
Please let me know if I can assist or answer any questions along the way!