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  1. #1
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    Best Way to Mount Flexible Solar Panels

    Who has mounted flexible solar panels on the roof of their trailer? Iím thinking this is the route Iím going to go and wonder what people suggest?

    Iíve seen on you tube where Tito mounted them with corrugated plastic to crest an air gap has anyone done that and is it a good option?
    2021 Imagine 2500RL
    2019 Ram Rebel

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jammer View Post
    Who has mounted flexible solar panels on the roof of their trailer? Iím thinking this is the route Iím going to go and wonder what people suggest?

    Iíve seen on you tube where Tito mounted them with corrugated plastic to crest an air gap has anyone done that and is it a good option?
    Flexible panels are a bad idea for several reasons.
    1. There is little to no air flow beneath them, which leads to heat building up across the cells, which significantly lowers the efficiency of the panel, overall.
    2. They really do not last. Most flexible panels have anywhere between a 1-5 year warranty, whereas most rigid panels have a 20-30 year warranty.
    3. The overall output of the flexible panels are much lower than a rigid panel, so for the same wattage in a rigid panel, you will need at least 3 flexible panels.

    They might initially look appealing due to their flexibility and low weight, but overall cost and durability really outweigh those "benefits". I can buy one 320 watt residential panel for around $200.00, with a 30 year warranty and a 20 year output guarantee.

    In my opinion, the flexible panels just are not worth it.

    Sent from my SM-N986U using Tapatalk
    Mark & Mary. Currently hailing from New Mexico. Hopefully full timing in late 2022.
    Current camper: Purchased a 2021 Grand Design Reflection 320MKS!
    Current Rig: 2019 Ford F350 SD Crew Cab, w/8' box, Lariat, SRW, 6.7l Diesel

  3. #3
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    I would agree 100% but there are many that will trade their RV in by the time the warranty runs out. The idea of a panel that does not stick up on the roof is a great way to have a much more modern look. Some of them you can even walk on.

    My build is going to be rigid since I rarely ever sell anything I have purchased.

  4. #4
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    I am aware of the downside of flexible panels but want the low weight and low profile they afford. I am going to mount them so that the err is a small air gap under them, but trying to find the best way, and wanting to know if anyone has has success.

    I’ll post my end product when I complete my install, but that won’t be until spring I’m guessing with cold weather coming in the upper Midwest.
    2021 Imagine 2500RL
    2019 Ram Rebel

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    I would look forward in seeing the end product. I always like to see what happens when someone does not follow the norm. Please be certain to post your pictures and the reasons when you do come to an end of your project.

  6. #6
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    I'm going to do something like what's done in the video linked below. Still trying to decide if the backing is necessary.

    https://youtu.be/uJIEXhnF8MU

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    James and Dawn
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    2021 Imagine 2400BH - GY Endurance 225/75-15; MORryde CRE3000, HD shackles and wet bolts, X-factor crossmembers

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by MoonShadow_1911 View Post
    Flexible panels are a bad idea for several reasons.
    1. There is little to no air flow beneath them, which leads to heat building up across the cells, which significantly lowers the efficiency of the panel, overall.
    2. They really do not last. Most flexible panels have anywhere between a 1-5 year warranty, whereas most rigid panels have a 20-30 year warranty.
    3. The overall output of the flexible panels are much lower than a rigid panel, so for the same wattage in a rigid panel, you will need at least 3 flexible panels.

    They might initially look appealing due to their flexibility and low weight, but overall cost and durability really outweigh those "benefits". I can buy one 320 watt residential panel for around $200.00, with a 30 year warranty and a 20 year output guarantee.

    In my opinion, the flexible panels just are not worth it.

    Sent from my SM-N986U using Tapatalk
    I completely agree.

    Additionally, the flexible Solar panels attract and absorb heat which is transferred directly into your coach.
    David and Peggy
    2019 Ford F350 Lariat, 6.7L Diesel, Dually, Long Bed
    Running with 20k Reese Goosebox (Love It) and Ford Factory "Puck" system.
    Stopping with 8,000 lb Disc Brakes and Titan Hydraulic over Electric Brakes system.
    Powering all this fun with 1200 Watts of Solar, two Tesla, Model S, battery modules, 24 volt Victron Inverter.
    2018 Solitude 310 GK

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jammer View Post
    I am aware of the downside of flexible panels but want the low weight and low profile they afford. I am going to mount them so that the err is a small air gap under them, but trying to find the best way, and wanting to know if anyone has has success.

    I’ll post my end product when I complete my install, but that won’t be until spring I’m guessing with cold weather coming in the upper Midwest.
    As far as a low profile goes, I can't even see my panels mounted on top of my camper unless I am actually looking for them. They just blend into the roof line.

    If you are going to use the flexible Solar panels, I would recommend using the corrugated plastic panels that Tito used.
    David and Peggy
    2019 Ford F350 Lariat, 6.7L Diesel, Dually, Long Bed
    Running with 20k Reese Goosebox (Love It) and Ford Factory "Puck" system.
    Stopping with 8,000 lb Disc Brakes and Titan Hydraulic over Electric Brakes system.
    Powering all this fun with 1200 Watts of Solar, two Tesla, Model S, battery modules, 24 volt Victron Inverter.
    2018 Solitude 310 GK

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by SolarPoweredRV View Post
    As far as a low profile goes, I can't even see my panels mounted on top of my camper unless I am actually looking for them. They just blend into the roof line.

    If you are going to use the flexible Solar panels, I would recommend using the corrugated plastic panels that Tito used.
    My plan at the moment is to either mount them on t-track thatís attached to the roof or make some custom mounts out of HDPE plastic that will hold bolts much like Brian/Tito did with his mounts.
    2021 Imagine 2500RL
    2019 Ram Rebel

  10. #10
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    I thought this thread was how to mount flex panels, not a flex vs rigid panels?

    There are some limitations that prevent rigid panels and flex panels have really upped their game. Check out Merlin Solar. Yeah, the price is there, but this thread is not about price.

    I would contact the manufacturer before slapping them on an RV or any other object. I suspect that attaching a flex panel on a flex roof may not be ideal. If it is indeed a temperature issue, how would that work with your rubber roof [or the adhesive holding the rubber to the roof]. I also would have an issue with glue holding anything down that is subjected to freeway speeds. Hardware would be mandatory for me.

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