How To Connect Two Goal Zero, Jackery, or Rockpals Panels Together
If you have bought or plan on buying a solar panel that come with an 8mm plug, you can easily connect two of the same or two different panels together.
Some of the brands that use the 8mm plug are Goal Zero, Jackery, and Rockpals.
Not all of their panels do though, so you need to make sure the specific panel you’re buying either has an 8mm plug or comes with an 8mm connector.
For example, the Goal Zero Boulder 100 (click to view on Amazon) does, but the Boulder 200 doesn’t.
All of the Jackery solar panels do, and most of Rockpals panels at least include an 8mm connector.
The Adapter You Need To Connect The Two Panels
Since we’re talking about connecting two panels that use the 8mm plug together, we need an 8mm Y branch/splitter.
IGreely is a company that makes one of these adapters, and you can find it here (click to view on Amazon).
In addition to the Y branch, iGreely includes an adapter that is supposed to be used with Jackery panels.
Even though companies call it the 8mm connector, they’re not all made the same way and won’t always fit as snug as they should. Sometimes the fit is so bad that it doesn’t work at all.
So, if you have Goal Zero panels use the Y branch as is. If you have Jackery panels, use the extra adapter. If you’re mixing a Goal Zero and a Jackery panel, use one of the two adapters.
What You Need To Know
By using the Y branch above, you’ll be creating a parallel connection.
What this does is it adds the amperages together, but the voltage stays the same.
For example, if you are connecting two 100W panels together, and each is rated for 5A at 18V, two wired in parallel will output 10A at 18V.
This is important since the power station you’re going to connect the panels to have input limitations. For example, most Jackery power stations require panels between 12 to 30 volts.
You might also find that the power station has a maximum wattage input, but this is usually not as critical to follow as the voltage limit.
A good charge controller can limit the amperage and charge the battery safely, but it will not accept a voltage that is too high.
Still, please check with the manufacturer of your specific power station to make sure it won’t hurt the charge controller.
You can connect two different panels together in parallel, but you should be aware of the reasons not to do so.
One reason to not do that is that they’ll most likely have different ratings, meaning a different voltage and amperage rating.
When two panels with different ratings are connected, the panel with the lower ratings will drag the panel with the higher ratings with it.
This can be the reason as to why two panels aren’t generating as much electricity as you think they should.
As soon as you start connecting panels together, you need to consider the thickness of the wire, more known as the wire gauge.
The iGreely adapter uses 14 gauge wire, which is rated to handle up to 15A. Therefore, I wouldn’t connect more than a total of 200W of solar panels with it, since two 100W 12V panels will output around 11-12A.
What If My Power Station Has An Anderson Power Pole Input (High Power Port?
IGreely makes an adapter for connecting two 8mm panels to an Anderson Power Pole input as well, and you can find it here (click to view on Amazon).
Are There Extension Cables?
Yes, iGreely also makes an 8mm extension cable that includes the same special Jackery connector the Y branch adapter does.
You can find the extension cable here (click to view on Amazon).
Using extension cables will increase the voltage loss, so I recommend getting the shortest possible extension cable possible for your setup to limit the loss.
Please leave a comment down below if you have any questions.