Basic Parts List
This installation was completed in October of 2023. The owners of this houseboat contacted me regarding upgrading their modest solar system on their houseboat. They had modest power needs and simply wanted to add some additional solar to their existing system, as well as a way to monitor their existing Lead Acid batteries. They had one 365 watt solar panel and after discussions with them, they decided to add two additional 365 watt panels, an appropriately sized MPPT solar controller and a shunt based battery monitor.
The overall installation was pretty straight forward. The batteries and equipment were easily accessible in a cabinet on the rear deck of the boat. I removed the existing solar controller and replaced it with a Victron 150/70 MPPT and added an IP65 rated Victron SmartShunt. I was able to utilize the existing solar wiring from the original system and connect it up to the new components. I added two REC 365 watt solar panels to the existing 365 watt panel (of a different manufacturer). The panel specifications between the two manufacturers were close enough that it didn’t justify the cost of replacing the existing panel to have them all match exactly.
I also added two Mopeka Pro Check tank sensors to the propane tanks on board. The Mopeka sensors can be monitored remotely via the internet through the use of a Mopeka WiFi Brridge. The whole process was completed in a day.
Once the installation was complete, I spent some time teaching the customer how to use all the components and their corresponding app interfaces. I also assisted in connecting the Mopeka WiFi bridge to the on board internet source to monitor the propane tank sensors remotely.