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Old 06-25-18, 09:49 PM   #1
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Default Diy solar install

So day marks the beginning of my solar install.
Step 1, up grade by adding a new 125 amp square d QO outdoor panel and remove as much inappropriate wiring as possible.
The thorn in my foot is the 6/2 with ground UF-B wire running out to my solar panel area back to the main panel.
It's on a tandem breaker which means the neutral and ground were running on the bare wire.
Not good, never would have come any where close to passing inspection like that.

I think what I will end up doing is reusing this wire to run a 240 welder circuit out to my solar panel and animal pen area then run conduit and run new proper wire out there.

I have pics but I will need to resize them or take new ones with my digital camera.

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Old 06-25-18, 11:04 PM   #2
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It is great to see another DIY solar install.
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Old 06-29-18, 03:30 PM   #3
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As a fellow DIY-guy, this should be an entertaining thread.
6/2 UF-B? Glad I didn't have to front the $$$ for that. If you're going to use the same burial location as the existing UF for your new conduit, you could put the UF in conduit.
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Old 06-30-18, 04:22 PM   #4
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I talked to the previous home owner, he said he rented a ditch wich, put the cable down as deep as it would dig. It sounded like a 3ft digger.
It's probably about 50 to 60 feet of trench to dig up.
I'm just going to leave it in the ground and make it a welder receptacle circuit.
I say do it once, do it right, maybe over do it.
Put the conduit above the UF-B cable.
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Old 09-01-18, 01:52 AM   #5
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I got another QO subpanel installed.
Indoor, 100 amp 8 space 8 circuit. This allows me to free up 6 spaces in the main.

Now I can install a 125 amp 12 space, 24 circuit outdoor main panel over in my outbuilding, animal pen, solar panel well area.
Right now it has an outdoor, 100 amp, 8 space, 8 circuit QO panel. 8 just isn't going to cut it.

I probably won't run 125 amps worth of coppwr all the way to that panel, which would mean I would be buying 150 feet of 2 gauge.
I will probably run it 3 gauge and put it on a 100 amp breaker.
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Old 09-24-18, 08:36 PM   #6
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Now I have my garage sub panel energized with 6/3 with ground and a 60 amp breaker.
This will be my 240v car charging circuit, welder, air compressor and 2nd cloths dryer circuits. Maybe future garage solar power tie in.
The garage sub panel is the outdoor panel that was over on the animal pen area.
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Old 10-02-18, 11:03 PM   #7
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Now I'm talking about actually doing this the power coop wants me to install a second meter so they can install a seperate service for the solar power.
I installed 2 new sub panels to accommodate solar back feeding. I'm glad I didn't pay an electrician to do it.

But that means skys the limit for how much I can produce. I don't have to ever worry about main panel limits on back feeding
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Old 10-03-18, 07:11 PM   #8
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Just curious, how cooperative has your power coop been with this project? Our coop finally started allowing grid-tie systems but the terms are absurd. We pay fifteen cents a kWh. They will buy ours at three cents.

We can't install more than 10kW. There are two monthly facilities fees, one for generation and one for distribution, plus a monthly administrative fee. In the end we would have to pay them for taking our unused energy.
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Old 10-03-18, 08:33 PM   #9
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Why does the solar array need a separate service connection? I'm running a 4kW array through a 150A service connection, and I'm the farthest customer from the transformer at my end of the service line. My power company is going to (not) love me when I install the additional 5.6kW I have in the garage...

Is it that your coop doesn't know how to program a meter for net metering? Are they still running conventional meters? We've had "Smart Meters" for ~8 years, and I simply got one the power company programmed to track bi-directionally. I have a tally for "delivered" and a tally for "received". Each month, they take my Delivered-Received=kWh you owe the power company.

I'm with Cranky, my power company sets the residential limit at 10kW. That's fine for my 1800 sq ft house.
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Old 10-05-18, 11:40 PM   #10
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I don't know I didn't make it to the power coop to talk to them.
The coop has modern over the air meters.
Maybe they want to be able to disconnect the solar panels from the grid.

All I know is I am getting tired of $120 to $300 power bills.

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