|Model||7-amp Charge Controller|
|Item Weight||5.6 ounces|
|Product Dimensions||4 x 2.25 x 7 inches|
|Item model number||60012|
|Is Discontinued By Manufacturer||No|
|Manufacturer Part Number||60012|
Sunforce 7 Amp Charge Controller
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- Protects battery from overcharge and discharge
- For use with 12 Volt solar panels and batteries only
- Handles up to 7 amps of array current and up to 105 watts of solar power
- Maintains 12V batteries in a fully charged state
- Operation: Yellow charging light indicates battery charging and green light indicates fully charged battery
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The Sunforce 60012 7 Amp Charge Controller prevents overcharging and discharging of 12 Volt batteries. It is intended for use with 12 Volt solar panels and maintains 12 Volt batteries in a fully charged state. It can handle up to 7 amps of array current and up to 105 watts of solar power. The controller is easy to use with a yellow charging light that indicates that your battery is charging, and a green light that indicates a fully charged battery.
From the manufacturer
Sunforce- 7 Amp, 12 Volt Charge Controller
About the Charge Controller
The Sunforce 7 Amp, 12 Volt Charge Controller will prevent overcharging your 12 volt batteries when charging with a 12 volt solar system.
It is recommended to consider the power capacity of your solar system in order to choose the right charge controller.
It's important to choose the proper wire gauge (thickness) based on your solar system's capacity and installation distance.
*Note: Solar Panel and Battery are not included.
Key Features of the 7 Amp Charge Controller
- Prevents overcharging of 12 volt batteries
- Indicates charging conditions with the LED lights on the controller
- Handles up to 7 amps of current
- Handles up to 105 watts of solar power
- Recommended to be used with solar panels 15 watts and higher
Top reviews from the United States
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This is an "on/off" controller. When your batteries reach 14.2 volts, it simply turns off. Your batteries will then discharge, either from something running off of them or simply by the passage of time (self discharge). Once they reach 13 volts, this controller turns on again and takes them back up to 14.2 volts, and the cycle repeats itself.
The problem is your 12v batteries are not fully charged when they reach 14.2 volts. Deep cycle batteries, especially, need more than that. Many are rated to be charged at 14.4v, some as high as 14.8v (many 6v pairs, wired in series, fall into this latter category). And when they reach that voltage they should continue to be charged at a gradually reduced current until they are truly full. When that doesn't happen they are chronically undercharged, which doesn't give you the full use of the battery's capacity. It's like having a ten gallon gas tank in your car but never putting more than 7 or 8 gallons in it. The result is you can't use as much electricity before needing to recharge again. Worse yet, chronic undercharging shortens battery life. Sulfation of the plates occurs, as well as stratification of the electrolyte fluid. Individual battery cell charges drift apart, and eventually cell failure occurs. It only takes one cell to fail and your battery becomes nothing more than a toxic lead weight.
Look for charge controllers that use PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) technology or MPPT (Maximum Power Point Tracking). MPPT is expensive and not really financially feasible for many small solar systems, but there are many PWM controllers on the market these days that are nearly as inexpensive as this cheap Sunforce on/off model.
PWM controllers charge your batteries in three stages - bulk, absorption and float. Bulk allows everything your solar panels can produce to be thrown at the batteries until they reach a set point, (14.4v for example), and at that point absorption stage takes over where the voltage is held there while the amps allowed into your batteries are gradually diminished over several hours. This really gets your batteries charged fully. At the end of absorption stage float stage takes over, which trickle charges batteries to keep them fully charged.
Renogy is one brand that is sold here on Amazon. The ten amp model uses PWM and even includes in-unit temperature compensation, but it is about ten bucks more than this Sunforce model. Even so, you'd likely save more than that in battery life. It's got its faults too though, like a short 30-minute absorption mode. If you really want a good one, look for Morningstar, Blue Sky, Rogue or Xantrex, to name a few. I've also heard good things about a very cheap Chinese brand called Landstar. Although most of these are quite a bit more expensive, they won't cut your battery life short and they will give you more battery capacity to work with. To learn more about 12v solar charging see rvsolar101 dot blogspot dot com. Part 7 covers charge controllers.
Some say you should charge your marine batteries to 14.4 volts to keep them from sulfating. This device switches off at 13.4 volts. I might of gotten the other kind, which is PWM and 14.4 volts, but many say the devices I was looking at do not cut off, and cook your batteries.
I have experience with this, and the one battery is 10 years old, so I don't think it is hurting anything.. Of course, I don't use either battery often, but I will tell you I have had no problem with my camper battery...
It's keeping my generator battery charged with a 5w Sunforce solar panel. I probably could have not used the charge controller on a 5w panel but it seemed like cheap insurance. Beware as previous people have stated, I had to splice connectors to make the Sunforce panel and charge controller connect. For me, I had read the comments and anticipated this. I plan to buy more for my tractor, truck, shed....
Dropping to 1 star. The unit is dead. I'm not sure exactly when it died but I was running a generator exercise the other day and noticed it's no longer charging the battery. Granted it was cheap enough but I do have an expectation of not having to replace it yearly.
I removed this charge controller and hooked up the 5w solar panel directly to the battery. It shouldn't be enough to over charge the battery but I was afraid the failure in the charge controller would discharge / drain the battery
The wire it comes with is smaller than the wire coming from the back of the solar panel. im sorry I don't know the sizes
Wires are self explanatory red+ black- and are very short
NO DIRECTIONS however it is pretty basic and if you need these directions you should call a electrician maybe even look on the youtube
NO LOAD setup/hook...up power is wasted
made in china, you get what you pay for, I bought this because it was purchased by other customers who also bought the solar panel I bought...
Now I know better than to listen to them guys.
I would Not buy this again, I would try to find something with a digital readout
It Does do the job it is intended to do, its mountable in a lightweight housing and all of its lights work...both of them, helps save power
3 hours later when I went to power on the yellow led flasher, the battery was so dead it would not even trip the photo cell attached to the lights.
It was working before I connected this because I checked it by covering the photo cell. So this thing definitely drained the battery. I have never had a problem with this when I had 3 small 1.5 w chargers connected to it.I added this and a 7 watt charger to save room.
I ordered 2, another for a 10 watt panel. I am returning both of these and bought 2 of these.
They appear to have better features and 3 leads. One for the panel, one for the batter and one for the device. This might be a better thing. This switches to float charge as well.
Top reviews from other countries
Trust the brand, know the brand ! Sunforce !