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Old 08-21-19, 01:06 PM   #11
jjackstone
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It finally happened. The grid went down over about a ten square mile area this morning. However my fridge continued humming away using the battery pack and I could still make a fresh pot of coffee just as though there was no problem at all. The only concession I made was to switch the fish tank over from grid power to solar power so the little fishies could stay swimming. Power was only down a couple hours but it made me chuckle to see all the solar homes in the area that were without power because they are grid tied. Humorously enough(at least to me), one of my neighbors is having additional grid tied solar installed on his house right at this moment.
JJ

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Old 09-30-19, 11:27 PM   #12
jjackstone
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Little Update.

Been a couple months now since I brought the system online. Things of note. My 2500 watt system has output in excess of 2600 watts a couple times. While I am not getting maximum use out of the system, it is getting a good workout. As Iíve said before all components are outside of the house. The temperature outside has been as high as 105F and I have had no failures yet.

The Victron controller which has no internal fan says it will output max power at 40C(104F) and below. I think it shuts down around 60C(140F). Early on I tested it with and without an external fan. In general, I have found that having a small external 20 watt fan blowing on the controller drops its temperature around 5C. I have to think keeping the temperature lower on any electronics will help extend its life. So far the controller shows a few hundred kwh output. That includes charging the batteries and powering whatever else happened to be running.

The cheap Reliable inverter has also performed without problems. Even when outputting over 2000 watts in 100F+ temps it did not shut down. Its internal fans were working hard though. This inverter is only supposed to be 85% efficient. The charge controller is supposed to be in excess of 90% efficient. So overall I would guess about a 75% efficient system. Doesnít really matter right now as Iím producing more juice than I can use and donít have enough storage for it all.

Just missed out on another Volt battery but they have been popping up more frequently. Iíll get another one or two eventually.

Iím one of those in California that is now subject to PG&E determined blackouts while trying to save themselves from further litigation. I am not in an area that would normally be shut down but if it did happen I have enough juice to run a few days without them even through a rainy period. My normal utility electrical idle usage is about 80W. So theoretically I could use less than 2kwh per day. So far, in reality, my lowest usage is 2.4kwh in one day.

The first photo is utility usage per day for the last couple weeks. You can see that most days were below 5 kwh per day. The higher usage days I was out of town and my room mate goes wild when that happens.



The second photo is of power provided by the solar array for the last thirty days. Today is the most I have used to date as I was testing a small ceramic heater to see if the inverter could handle it. It did. You'll see a couple of really low output days if you look closely. They were under 1 kwh days. For some reason my room mate decided to unplug the solar for extended periods of time(again while I was out of town).



So I'm pretty happy. Averaging around 4 kwh per day so far for this month from the grid and using 4 to 5 kwh per day from the solar setup.

JJ
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Old 10-09-19, 04:26 PM   #13
WoodBurner
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Hi JJ, thanks for this link, really spending a few days looking into the thinking of this guy!

==============

The Jack Rickard video link.

/youtu.be/98YDEbgLs2A







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Old 10-09-19, 09:44 PM   #14
where2
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I'm amazed you managed to get the idle usage down to a mere 80W... If I can get mine under 500W, I feel like I've accomplished a lot!!
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Old 10-10-19, 10:10 PM   #15
jjackstone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by where2 View Post
I'm amazed you managed to get the idle usage down to a mere 80W... If I can get mine under 500W, I feel like I've accomplished a lot!!
Funny thing is that I don't know where most of it is going. I know my security system uses about ten watts. Probably a couple watts each on computers when they are in sleep mode even though the Kill-A-Watt meter doesn't measure anything. Printers are turned off when not in use. There are three digital clocks that pull a few milliwatts each and the garage door opener circuit is always running but I can't imagine it pulling more than a few watts. I guess the central air/heating circuit probably pulls a little also but still can't be that much. So that leaves me with about 60 watts of usage that I haven't tracked down...yet. I'll figure it out.
JJ

Oops. Forgot about cable modem and router. That's probably ten or fifteen watts 24/7. Have to measure that.

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