How to install solar panels on a motorhome or camper
How is the best way to fasten the solar panels to your RV camper? Here is how you do it.
In addition to the solar panel or panels, you'll need:
- Solar panel mounting brackets
- Adhesive; Tec7, Sikaflex 512, Sikaflex 252i or similar (preferably transparent)
Here's how you mount the solar panels:
- First, make sure to connect the power cables to the panels.
- Apply adhesive to the top side of the corner bracket of where the panel will be installed, and fit them onto the panel. You may let it dry and fasten before you proceed to the next step.
- Before you glue the panel brackets to the rooftop, put it on the rooftop without adhesive to find the perfect spot. Mark the corners with some adhesive tape, just to see where it fits.
- Clean the surface where the brackets will be clued well.
- Turn the solar panel upside down, apply adhesive to the brackets. Make sure to cover the surfaces well. Lift and turn the panel and try to place it within the tape marked corners without moving it around after touching the rooftop. Make sure that it is well fitted, then let it dry for a day before moving the camper.
The wires have to go into the camper. If there is some distance between where the solar panel or panels are, and where you decide to lead the wires into the camper, try to find something to strap the wires to. If you have rails on your camper, you may strap the wires to them.
PS! Make sure the end of the wires is insulated. If not, apply some electrical tape.
The cables should go through a cable block into the camper. Pull the cables through the block before you pull the cables through the root top and into your camper. It's probably a good idea to put some silicone sealant in the hole and around the cables, to make it as watertight as possible. Then, apply adhesive onto (underneath) the block and glue it to the rooftop.
Let it dry properly for at least a day. If you want to check if everything if watertight, you can use a water hose and spray the rooftop with water. Check for any leakage inside the camper where the cables enter. If there is no leakage, you're okay!
Here is a video that shows how to do it properly: