WindyNation 400 Watt Solar Kit review
Reviews RV Solar Panel

WindyNation Solar Panel Kit: 4pcs 100W Solar Panels Review 

November, 2019

The WindyNation solar panel kit packs a lot of power and is perfect for the RV lover in search of a low maintenance, easy to install setup that comes with everything needed for a solar panel system that can provide some serious juice. WindyNation has produced some of the most user-friendly solar panel kits on the market. Their systems are very versatile, allowing you to choose from a variety of mounting options. Additionally, the kit comes loaded with some great extras, so you can get started setting up your system right away. 

Our Verdict: This is a four hundred watt system, which means it’s packing some serious power. If you have high power needs and want a system that can handle powering major electronic devices and appliances, then this four-piece solar panel set will prepare you for a long trip on the road. Of course, if you want this system to perform at its best then you’ll need to stay on top of keeping these polycrystalline solar panels clean and free of debris. Additionally, on overcast days you can also expect these solar panels to dip in power. Click here to see if it’s still available…

Overview and Features 

This kit comes with four one-hundred-watt solar panels, deep cycle twelve-volt batteries complete with 2/0 AWG cables, solar panel mounting hardware, forty feet of UL listed twelve AWG solar cables and a thirty-amp charge controller. 

This system is designed for remote and back-up power use, and boat, RV, home, and cabin use. 

In terms of power, polycrystalline solar panels are decent, but they have high maintenance needs. Dirt, dust, and debris can affect how these panels absorb sunlight. This means you’ll need to wipe down these panels every two to three days in order to keep the system up and running. Even a fine film of dust can affect how efficiently the panels absorb sunlight. In windy conditions, or in high debris areas, such as the desert, these panels may need to be wiped down more frequently.

On cloudy days you can also expect this system to fall flat. This is the major drawback for any type of solar panel system that uses polyscrystalline panels.

Monocrystalline panels don’t have the same type of high maintenance needs, but systems that use them can easily cost twice the price of a polycrystalline system.

This is a large polyscrystalline system that provides a top of the line performance, just as long as they’re properly taken care of.

Charge Controller

The PWM solar charge controller features adjustable settings. The large LCD display screen will keep you up to date with system amperage, amp-hours, voltage, DC load draw, and temperature. Basically, it displays the crucial system information that you need to know in order to keep this system running smoothly. 

These panels provide an average of seventeen hundred watt-hours or one hundred and fifty-amp hours of charge daily. Of course, this will depend on sunlight exposure. 

Warranty

This set is covered by a five-year panel warranty, a twenty-five-year power output warranty, and a twelve-month warranty on all of the components in this set. This type of extensive warranty will give buyers confidence in this type of investment.

Customer Service

According to customer feedback, WindyNation’s customer support team is fast and responsive. They offer twenty-four hour troubleshooting help via email and telephone. If you have any complaints regarding the system’s performance or feel that your system is defective, contact customer support for repairs or replacements.

Power Needs

How many solar panels do I need for my RV? This is a common question and the answer heavily depends on your power needs. The size of the RV will also be a factor. Overall, this four-panel system should be adequate for moderate power needs. When maintained properly and in ideal weather conditions, this system can provide enough power to run one large major appliance and a few smaller electronic devices. 

The manufacturer also sells expansion kits, in the event you need more power. These kits typically contain one to two additional solar panels and the necessary connectors, cables, and hardware.

Performance 

Adding a portable solar panel system can be the perfect solution for your RV power needs if you want to take your RV out during the day instead of being tied down to your campsite to charge your batteries. 

These four one hundred-watt solar panels should be sufficient to recharge an RV’s batteries, in sunny conditions. For basic power needs two hundred watts should do it. 

The included cables in this package carry power to the charge controller, which is located inside the RV. The cables run from the charge controller to the coach batteries. 

This set includes polycrystalline solar panels, instead of the more popular, more expensive monocrystalline solar panels like the ones you’ll find in the Go Power! Weekender SW Complete Solar and Inverter System.

The polycrystalline panels are more flexible and are often used to reduce the weight of a portable solar setup. However, these solar panels are not quite as energy efficient as monocrystalline panels. Another issue you’ll run into involves the performance of the panels on overcast days. There were many reports that the panel’s voltage power dropped below twelve percent on cloudy days. In fact, some people reported that the sun may still be out, but even the slightest hint of clouds can significantly affect the panel’s ability to absorb sunlight. This issue will obviously be a deal breaker for some. 

The thirty-amp charge controller is perfect for this four-hundred-watt setup. The PMW charge controller works well in colder weather conditions and tends to transfer more power than the MPPT charge controller that you’ll find in smaller setups. 

If you’d like to check out more powerful solar panel system kits, click here to read our buyer’s guide, which includes five of the leading kits on the market. 

Fuses and Wires 

Inside the package you’ll find all the wires and fuses you’ll need to set up your new solar panel system.

The included single contact electrical connectors are used on all solar panel systems. The forty-foot cable is used to connect the panels to the charge controller, which as you know, is kept inside the RV. The connectors are used to plug the controller right into the panels. Wires are run from the charge controller to the RV’s battery. 

System Assembly 

Since these panels are so large, they can be awkward to carry. Most pros recommend using a couple of piano hinges, which you can find at any hardware store and drill some holes through the aluminum panel frames to mount the hinges. This allows you to easily store the panels and then unfold them for use. During storage, you can use a type of nylon suitcase strap to keep them together. You can also mount a handle along the panel’s latch to keep them closed when not in use. 

Your next step will be to determine where the charge controller should be mounted. Since it isn’t weatherproof, it should be mounted in an enclosed area that’s safe from the elements. However, the controller should be easily accessible since the large digital display allows you to monitor the system. The ideal place is near other monitoring gauges. Most people tend to mount them in an RV’s storage bay, as opposed to tearing into interior walls. This location keeps the controller close and makes it easy to access. 

In order to avoid grounding issues, mount the charge controller to some PVC plastic board, then fasten the board to the inside of the storage bay. With the charge controller mounted here, you can attach the forty-foot cable to the connectors, then directly to the charge controller. 

The only thing left to do now is run the wires to hook up the system. Using connectors, run the wires to the RV’s battery. Once this part is complete, plug in the panels to start powering up the electrical system. 

Pros

  • Lightweight setup
  • Easy to install
  • Four-hundred watts of power
  • Reasonably priced

Cons 

  • Panels do not absorb much light on even slightly overcast days
  • Comes with polycrystalline panels which are not very powerful
WindyNation Four Piece Solar Panel Kit Conclusion and Rating

Product Rating Updated November, 2019: (4.5/5)

WindyNation 400 Watt Solar Kit

WindyNation is a top company that offers a large selection of solar panel systems. This four panel set is a great option if you’re on a tight budget and have high power needs. This system will allow you to travel off grid, camp out in the backcountry, and head out exploring all day long as the solar panel system takes charge and focuses on absorbing enough sunlight to power all your essential devices and appliances.

Despite the fact that there were some complaints regarding solar panel power issues on cloudy days, in ideal sunlight conditions, this is one powerful system. Installation is a cinch, which is a huge plus for RV users with no prior solar panel experience. This kit comes loaded with all the gear you’ll need to set up a solar panel system right away. Intuitive and easy to use, we gave this kit a rating of four and a half out of five stars.

Summary
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WindyNation 400 Watt Four Piece Solar Panel Kit
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