Plug A Zamp/SAE Solar Panel Into A Goal Zero Yeti
Zamp is an American brand that makes solar panels that come with SAE connectors. Goal Zero is another American brand that makes power stations/solar generators but uses 8mm and Anderson Power Pole inputs. Today I will help you connect the two, so you can charge your Goal Zero Yeti with a Zamp solar panel.
Note that you’re not going to be able to directly connect a Zamp panel with a built-in solar charge controller, since the Yeti power stations have solar charge controllers built-in as well. If you have one of those solar panel kits, you need to bypass the charge controller on the panel by splicing into the connection between the panel and the controller.
If you cut the wire and put MC4 connectors on both sides with an MC4 kit that includes a solar crimper and cable strippers, you can easily bypass it and connect the MC4 to 8mm adapter which will plug into your Yeti. I recommend using a multimeter to make sure you put a male MC4 connector on the positive wire coming from the panel, and a negative MC4 female connector.
That means that the positive wire from the charge controller will have an MC4 female connector and the negative will have an MC4 male connector.
Related Post: Plug A Zamp Solar Panel Into A Furrion Solar Port
Step 1: SAE to MC4
First, we need an adapter to turn the SAE connection into MC4 connectors. This adapter (click to view on Amazon) does exactly that.
The adapter includes a reverse polarity adapter that you might have to use depending on how your solar panel is wired. Zamp reverses the polarity on its solar panels and solar ports, so please make sure that the positive (red) wire from your panel is going to the positive (red) side of the adapter.
Step 2: MC4 to 8mm/APP
Second, we need an adapter to turn the MC4 connectors into either an 8mm or Anderson Power Pole (APP) connector. If you look at the input of your Yeti, you’ll know whether you have only an 8mm input, or both an 8mm and APP. The larger Yeti power stations have an APP input because it can handle more input. The 8mm input can only handle up to 120 watts of input on most Yeti power stations.
This adapter will turn the MC4 into an 8mm connector.
If your panel is larger than 150W, or you’d like to use the Anderson Power Pole because you can, the adapter you’ll need is this one.
Note that you might have to rearrange the Anderson Power Pole connector to fit the Yeti, but that is very easy to do.
The positive and negative connectors can be separated and turned to change the position. It’s important that you plug the positive (red) part of the connector into the positive (red) part of the input on the Yeti.
What You Need To Know When Connecting Solar Panels To A Goal Zero Yeti
The Yeti Lithium power stations can handle solar panels with up to 22V VOC. The VOC rating can usually be found on a sticker on the panel, or in the product’s specifications/manual.
If you want to connect two or more panels to a Yeti Lithium, you must connect the panels in parallel, more about that down below.
Since the Yeti power stations have a solar charge controller built-in, you also can’t connect a Zamp solar panel that has a built-in charge controller unless you bypass the controller and connect the Yeti directly to the solar panel.
Related Post: 5 Ways To Charge A Goal Zero Yeti Faster
If you have a non-lithium power station, like the Yeti 150 or 400, it can handle up to 29V VOC. The Yeti 1250 can handle up to 48V, which means you can connect two 12V panels in series.
You also need to make sure that the polarity is correct, which means that the positive wire from the solar panel is connecting to the positive 8mm/APP connector.
With the adapters above it’s easy to follow the circuit and make sure they’re connected correctly due to their color. Positive is red, and negative is black.
I recommend using MC4 extension cables if you want to store the Yeti further away from the solar panel. The WindyNation 12 Gauge MC4 extension cables (click to view on Amazon) come in different lengths depending on what you need.
How Many Solar Panels Can The Goal Zero Yeti Handle?
The 8mm input on most Yeti power stations can handle up to 120W of input, and the APP input can handle up to 360W. Therefore it’s not worth connecting more than 200W of solar panels to an 8mm input since 200W of panels will generate between 100-140W and max out the 8mm input.
How Do You Connect Two Or More Panels?
If you have a Yeti Lithium, you can connect two panels with an MC4 Y Branch (click to view on Amazon).
This creates a parallel connection that doubles the amperage, but not the voltage, so as long as the VOC ratings of the 12V panels don’t exceed 22V, you’re safe to use them with the Yeti Lithium power stations.
Related Post: How To Combine Two Or More Goal Zero Solar Panels
How Do I Use Other Aftermarket Solar panels With A Goal Zero Yeti?
I have written a post that goes through this specifically, click here to view it.
My Solar Generator Has A Different Input, How Do I Connect The Zamp/SAE Solar Panel?
If your solar generator has neither an 8mm or APP input, leave a comment down below and let me know what solar generator you have, and I will help you out.
Please leave a comment down below if you have any questions.