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Forum Index : Solar : Rubbish solar panels

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Joined: 15/07/2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 592
Posted: 01:36am 27 Mar 2023
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Sungold Flex solar panels are rubbish.

Originally bought these panels to try some on the electric boat, and some for sale.
I wrote a little history in the Ma-Sea Solar boat thread.

There are 4 panels in series to make 48v nominal for charging the quad bike battery, nominal 48v. First installed 9 April 2021.

If I take a picture like this and number the panels. (This picture is taken today, 27 March 2023, before I removed the 2 failed panels)

Then it was number 3 panel that failed in just over 1 year. Replaced 1 May 2022.
Number 2 panel failed in approximately 1 year and 7 months. Failed late October 2022. Replaced in December 2022.

I noticed not charging maybe a month ago (Late February 2023). It was before the Fully Charged Live show in Sydney.

However, today I replaced 2 more panels (numbers 1 and 4) on the quad bike charge system. Both panels showed zero volts open circuit. So maybe 1 year and 11 months.

Panels 1 and 4 are replaced, photo from the other end.

And charging again

A comment from Revlac (Aaron) in Ma-Sea boat thread about only charging 12v batteries. ........ All of the panels sold to customers, were for charging 12v batteries. All in Caravan's and Campers. A lot of them returned.
Edited 2023-03-27 11:37 by Trev
Trev @ drivebynature.com


Joined: 31/12/2016
Location: Australia
Posts: 849
Posted: 02:12am 27 Mar 2023
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Makes me wonder if any flexible solar panels last long enough to even bother with.
I have been using small glass aluminium frame 5w 10w and 20w panels for charging (top up) the batteries in tractors, vehicles and other things for years,   much better price now than they used to be.
Edited 2023-03-27 15:33 by Revlac
Cheers Aaron
Off The Grid
Senior Member

Joined: 26/09/2020
Location: Australia
Posts: 278
Posted: 05:39am 27 Mar 2023
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Thanks for the heads up Trev.
I have repaired one flexible panel for a friend, fortunately it was the leads that pulled out of the panel. Took a bit of digging to get to the connection strap on the panel, but a bit of quick soldering brought it back to life, then a glob of silicon and he was camping again.
I have always wondered just how reliable flexible panels would be.
Seems like Not Very


Joined: 11/02/2018
Location: Australia
Posts: 1368
Posted: 07:29am 27 Mar 2023
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Have read elsewhere that flexible panels need to be glued to a perfectly flat surface and covered in glass to get any life. Thought it was in jest but it seems they are not suitable for use outdoors!
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