Aircon Powered by Solar?





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  1. #1
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    Default Aircon Powered by Solar?

    Hey guys. Last week, I was given a free portable air-con. Its a small 9000 BTU A/C. Now I know these units are not the most efficient cooling devices, but I have an attic that I wanted to turn into a man cave of sorts. Only problem is it gets really hot, both the day and night. I want to know if its possible to somehow power the air-con during the day by solar power. At night i could use a normal wall mounted one to cool the place when I'm using it, which wont be an everyday thing.

    Is this feasible? I would need to add a battery just to stabilize the power, but have no intention on running the A/C off it. It would be preferable to keep in in float.

    If it is possible, how many watts of solar power am I looking at, and what size inverter would do the job.

    Electricity bill comes a bit high with my pool pump running, so I'm looking to reduce costs as much as possible. Just want to cool the room down some without breaking the bank. Thanks
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Aircon Powered by Solar?

    I'm sure you could, you would need an inverter charger solar controller and at least one battery and then run the aircon when there's sufficient sunlight to feed most of the power, won't be a cheap solution though.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Aircon Powered by Solar?

    I can run my split unit aircon off the solar installation no problem. It draws less watts than what comes of the roof, specifically at the time you need it. The batteries monitor system still shows an charge, and not a discharge. I've got 12 x 270W panels.
    Sakkie Coetzee

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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Aircon Powered by Solar?

    Quote Originally Posted by RogerRamjet View Post
    Hey guys.

    Electricity bill comes a bit high with my pool pump running, so I'm looking to reduce costs as much as possible. Just want to cool the room down some without breaking the bank. Thanks
    The aircon uses nearly 2.5kW. Thus you will need solar input of about 3kW meaning about 10x300W panels. On a sunny day you can then use it after 10h00 to 16h00 running on the panels. Your inverter could be round about a 3.5kW. If you not going to add backup to the inverter the Solis 2.5 or 3.0 grid-tie will work fine. On cloudy days you might not need the aircon as the solar panels would then not produce 100% of the power the aircon needs but then it might not be needed.
    Last edited by ekkekan; 2019/03/28 at 09:18 AM.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Aircon Powered by Solar?

    Thanks guys. Really helpful. I was hoping around 600w or so of solar power would be able to power the thing, but looks like it will be just too costly, for just a small aircon. Will be just better off installing a more efficient wall mounted one and using electricity. Really wish there were affordable solar a/c options.

    Thanks again

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Aircon Powered by Solar?

    Quote Originally Posted by ekkekan View Post
    The aircon uses nearly 2.5kW. Thus you will need solar input of about 3kW meaning about 10x300W panels. On a sunny day you can then use it after 10h00 to 16h00 running on the panels. Your inverter could be round about a 3.5kW. If you not going to add backup to the inverter the Solis 2.5 or 3.0 grid-tie will work fine. On cloudy days you might not need the aircon as the solar panels would then not produce 100% of the power the aircon needs but then it might not be needed.
    The label says 950W.

    Be carefull not to confuse electrical energy input required and heating/cooling energy output after pumping efficiency is accounted for.
    Last edited by Fluffy; 2019/03/28 at 02:55 PM.
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  8. #7
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    Default Re: Aircon Powered by Solar?

    Input for portable AC is 950 W.

    Solar panels are rated typically at 25 deg C. Typically they operate at about 50 deg C. At these temperatures panels have lower output than the 25 deg C rated output. From what I have seen typically only about 75 to 80 % of the rated capacity

    Long story short. 4 x 300 W = 1200 W rated panels will typically produce about 960W when it heats up in the full sun on blue sky days. Close to the load.

    If it was me, looking for a straight forward 1-on-1 generation-to-load solution, get a grid tied inverter rated in the 1500W range for this PV setup

    Plug the mobile AC in at normal wall plug with the inverter tied in at the DB

    Put the air conditioner on a timer to run in time band during summer where the PV inverter produces ~ 950 W or more most of the time and there should be relatively little increase in electricity bill.

    By the way. Most pool pumps are in the 750 W range. Similar system can nullify the pool pump electricity account without changing the pool pump setup. Might as well get more panels and larger inverter to take the pool pump and AC consumption of the electricity bill

    Also, I have also found that the wall mount AC split inverter type AC units ( Samsung Digital Inverter in my case) can also use significantly less than rated power input ( ~ 400 W) if the temp setting is placed in the 24 deg C or higher range, but at 19 degC it goes full power at 2500 W. Don't think the normal AC wall mount split units will reduce the input this much
    Last edited by vlakkie; 2019/03/28 at 10:16 PM.
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  9. #8
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    Default Re: Aircon Powered by Solar?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fluffy View Post
    The label says 950W.

    Be carefull not to confuse electrical energy input required and heating/cooling energy output after pumping efficiency is accounted for.
    Oooops - getting too old now or need new specs

  10. #9
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    Default Re: Aircon Powered by Solar?

    Quote Originally Posted by ekkekan View Post
    Oooops - getting too old now or need new specs
    My main concern would be that the whole exercise is an expensive waste of time and money, especially if you are going to have split unit in there anyway.

    Those portables are horrible, terribly inconvenient, sell it for a few grand to a sucker and use the few grand to pay for the power for the split.
    Cheers

    ZS5KAD
    3 V8's
    NA TwinTurbo SuperCharger
    A V6 and an inline 4

    The frogs are starting to notice that the water is getting warm but it is already too hot to do anything about it.....

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