26 thoughts on “Part 3.3, Connecting solar panels in series vs. parallel

  1. This video doesn't explain the pros and cons of series vs. parallel hookups. To me it seems parallel is more "forgiving" since if 1 panel is shaded on a series setup, it will greatly lessen the performance of the entire system, whereas in parallel, the strong (sunny) panels will "overpower" the shaded weak one. Another advantage of parallel vs. series is parallel can have any number of panels, even an "oddball" number such as 7, whereas series needs a certain number to achieve the proper voltage. For example, if your goal was to have a 48V system, you would need a certain number of solar panels to achieve that such as 4. However with the parallel setup, if you already have 4 panels and want to boost it a little, you could add a 5th panel to increase current flow potential.

  2. You lost me at the point you said current flows from positive to negative. It doesn't. Current flow is the movement of electrons which are negative by definition. The negative side of any electricity generating device is negative because it has a surplus of electrons. Electrons equal electricity. Those electrons want to flow to the positive side where there is a dearth of electrons. That "want" is called Voltage. The flow is called Amperage. There was a school of thought long ago that current flowed from positive to negative but that school of thought was shown to be wrong by vacuum tubes. Current always flowed from the negative cathode to the positive plate or anode. Hence the name "diode". Then they put a control screen in to control how much flow there was an they had an amplifier. Later in semiconductors a lot of people wanted current to flow from positive to negative so they came up with the bogus name "hole flow" which to me is just stupid. It basically said a bunch of nothings flowed from the positive to the negative. You HAVE to have SOMETHING moving to have current flow, be it a river or a wire. Those somethings in the wire are the electrons.

  3. have to agree with scott spencer, going so fast that you were making mistakes of your own, why the rush , couln't follow it even trying to manually stopping and going, but thanks for the time and effort with maybe good intentions, just not realizing the folks that need your help are not as savvy and smart as you>

  4. Brian, I would like to know what happens, or should I ask, what is the proper configuration of mismatched panels? If I have 2, 305 watt panels at 39.9v each, and 1, 100 watt panel at 18v, how should I connect these to get the maximum energy from them? Should I series connect the two matching ones and add the last one in directly? Or should I combine them all into one series? Or should I parallel the whole thing? Thanks for the help. -Dallas, TX.

  5. Terrific video! A really hot topic in a lot of channels that I follow is solar panels on our sailboats. The big challenge we have is that we're trying to get maximum power, but also dealing with shading issues because the sail (or even just the boom when the sail is down) causes a HUGE loss in power.

    The general approach is to wire ALL the panels in parallel.

    My question is – assuming that we are willing to purchase any inverter or equipment necessary to help maximize power, what do you think is the best way to wire / set up the panels knowing that we're always going to have one or two cells shaded by the sail (or boom)?

  6. I have 4x similar rating panels as you used in the example. However i am using these with my solar inverter which has a max input of 36V and max current of 50A which forces me to use the panels in parallel. However I am afraid that if certain panel produces less voltage (whether due to a fault or if it is under some shadow for example) I think it may damage other panels as well. How "realistic" is my concern?

  7. I am sorry, HAHAHAHA… You said that the positive goes to the negative, when in fact scientist found that it is the other way around. how ever the math is still the same You see the so called – is not negative but is a positive, scientist found this out when trying to recharge batteries with solar panels. "Or so said the internet." How ever ether way works, all the math is the same so long as you use it the same. If it comes up as negative that just mean's it's a positive on a multi meter. So in reality this comment does not give any purposes but to be a comment with no meaning…
    Comment you are so lame <— I Wanna see this as my replies.

  8. That was so confusing… I know no more after watching this than before.. how about slowing down and explain things better for the layman.. An electrician would probably understand this completely. make it a 3 part series so you can explain better what you are talking about. this reminds me of talking with a used car salesman.

  9. this helped so much with wrapping my head around the fundamentals of a project i intend to build , a solar rc glider . I've seen many examples but never a comprehendable description of that thanks . i was lost for a min but after abit of rewatching and the end results make perfect sense . thanks

  10. Here's a uestion I been wondering…. Is it better for me to use (3) – 100 watt panels or just buy (1) – 24v 300W panel ?

    I am a just starting out newbie… I have a MPPT 20A Controller, 100ah amg Battery and the system is 12V
    and a (2000/4000 Pure Sine Inverter)

  11. Both serial and parallel connection have their advantages and dis-advantages. In serial you get higher voltage and thereby lower wire loss. But the downside of serial connection, is that it is very vulnerabel to shading. So if just a tiny part of one panel is shaded, then the total power output will drop significantly.
    On the other hand, parallel connection gives lower voltage, and thereby more wire loss. But is much less vulnerabel to shading.
    More info about shading of panels here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofo1HQyGG8s

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