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  1. #161
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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by the_terrible_triplett View Post
    Good plan, till they die ... Those are some serias batts, them Willards 2v ones!

    FWIW. Before the Trojans where sold, we, Gerlach and I, found an article on matching lithiums with lead acids.

    I was going there ... till I was not.


    However ... the core of your post ...
    Do. NOT. Go. 24v Victron inverter - trust me ... I tried that!!!

    ... unless you have a serias 24v long-term plan for the future.

    Why?

    Carefully and with deep insight note the 24v vs 48v limits suggested on the MPPT's documentation.
    And same ah 24v lithium bank costs more than 48v today.

    Unless, as I said, you have a serias 24v long-term plan for the future ... I though I did ... till I changed my mind.
    Don't worry, my main system is Victron 48V inverter.
    Store is just some way from the house and will just utilise the 24V unit there.

    If the batteries are sold for scrap and lithium purchased, that would be for main system. Store system then mothballed till I get old batteries again
    Last edited by Prof; 2020/06/20 at 08:39 AM.
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  3. #162
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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    I think the above threads are creating the impression that 3.5KW installed panels is going to give one 3.5kW of power over the day..

    Realistically, if you take 80% of 3.5kW installed panels you will get 2800W of power over a maximum of 4 hours of the day..The other 8 hours you will get from 0 to 2800W back to 0 again.

    It follows a normal distribution curve.....

    Now, if you can control your wife, your kids, your maid and the weather/rain etc then you will be able to maximise your usage of the 2800W during the day...But remember, a kettle takes 2000W, a geyser 2-3K W, an iron 1500W and so it goes.

  4. #163
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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Thank you TTT.

    Again, sorry for how I'm trying to make sense of it, I also must see in pictures to understand, word pictures that it is.


    Quote Originally Posted by the_terrible_triplett View Post
    Keep the MPPT - +-2kw on it, so you may want to get a 2nd one later? You are saying, once I'm ready to go to a 48V system, I just select this on the controller and then it could do 2000W? And then later to expand my system to 4000W, I just add another one later? Can the Multiplus II handle both of these? Or 3 or more?

    Get a Victron Multiplus II 3kva +-R15k - future proof it ito grid tying. I'm on 24V. It looks like these units can run in parallel to double my system to 48V and 6000W should I get another one later. Or would it make more economical sense to get a 5Kva unit?

    VenusGX, Carlo Gavazzi + cable +-R5k - need that for grid-tying.
    Other odds and sods extra - always are. I've read what you said about these units and if I understood you correct, these are not crucial now. I could get them later once everything gets fancier?

    AC can go the distance, not DC.
    On a +-2kw array it should operate at below +-1.8kw so you won't have temp derating being grid-tied.
    But keep it as cool as you can in peak heat times, cooler electronics do last longer. Applies to all electronics.

    Run the entire house off solar, and very little batteries, all automated out of the box as per your settings.

    Ok, please talk me in serious layman's terms. With my current needs, how will this Multiplus II do it for me? What can it do?

    I would like to run the house as much as I can on solar and batteries. But I feel I need to be in control with this.

    I will add panels as soon as I can. For now I have a 400Ah AGM battery bank.

    - I want to flip a switch to put the light loads on batteries and solar. Or could the Multi do this for me on pre programmed times?
    - I do need a 2nd db for this yes? So that the heavy element consumers are always on the grid?
    - is it a good idea to install a manual change over switch between the grid db and the battery db?



    It seems as if the wiring is going to be nightmare. Or not?

    There is a 40 meter distance between Multi in the garage, and the grid db in the house.
    The Multi must get ac power from the grid db in the house, and then another ac line needs to run back from it into the house for a 2nd db? Or do I have it wrong as to how this unit works or must be wired up?




    I would definitely add a BMV Smart (+-R3k) if it is lead acid, or a DIY lithium bank ... because then you can use the SOC to decide how much batteries you want to use in every 24hour cycles, feeding the house, and not break the batts ever.
    Nico Swart

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  5. #164
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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by NewLandy View Post
    I think the above threads are creating the impression that 3.5KW installed panels is going to give one 3.5kW of power over the day..

    Realistically, if you take 80% of 3.5kW installed panels you will get 2800W of power over a maximum of 4 hours of the day..The other 8 hours you will get from 0 to 2800W back to 0 again.

    It follows a normal distribution curve.....

    Now, if you can control your wife, your kids, your maid and the weather/rain etc then you will be able to maximise your usage of the 2800W during the day...But remember, a kettle takes 2000W, a geyser 2-3K W, an iron 1500W and so it goes.
    Well, if you running good quality pannels and it's mount at the rite angle, and you got the rite gear with it, then it can make way more power then the array size. I got a 2.9kw array and on a good clear summer days it can generate over 3.2kw. I added a pic where my mppt was busy while i was pulling some big loads. Got some videos that i took where it was busy for some time. Still need to get a wifi unit from microcare to connect to the mppt to send the data to microcare portel.

    TTT got some nice outputs from his 3.5kw array. Some really good outputs!!!! 😎😎😎
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by Gerlach; 2020/06/20 at 11:32 AM.

  6. #165
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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by NewLandy View Post
    I think the above threads are creating the impression that 3.5KW installed panels is going to give one 3.5kW of power over the day..

    Realistically, if you take 80% of 3.5kW installed panels you will get 2800W of power over a maximum of 4 hours of the day..The other 8 hours you will get from 0 to 2800W back to 0 again.

    It follows a normal distribution curve.....

    Now, if you can control your wife, your kids, your maid and the weather/rain etc then you will be able to maximise your usage of the 2800W during the day...But remember, a kettle takes 2000W, a geyser 2-3K W, an iron 1500W and so it goes.
    Absolutely all true!!! 80% is a good general realistic assumption.

    As I said before, depends on the angle of the array - T&C apply I said. And mornings 1st watt to evenings last watt - literally 1 watt. :-)
    Peak hours of 5.5 on average over a year, my case:
    • Winter 8am I start getting some watts in, summer like just after 5:30am
    • Winter I peak between 11am-2pm but from 9am it looks good already till after 4pm.
    • Summer good generation is like 9am-6pm ...


    And it goes back to what I said, get data, start smaller array and add on as one see you need more based on your data.

    And we all know summer production obviously is higher than winter, do keep in mind that:
    Cpt winter has clouds, and Jhb not.
    Cpt summer has no rain later afternoon, Jhb summers tend to.
    This titbit just for interesting info, how regiosn differ.

    In MY case, my 3.5kw array gives me:
    Brief peaks of 4.25kw under very specific conditions i.e cloud effect and a cool day - where one can sees why one needs to watch the max volts / amps limits.
    Average of 3.2kw in summer.
    And in winter about 2.55kw average.

    Also why I say on a 3kva (2.4kw constant) get a 3.5kw array.
    And on a 5kva (4kw constant) IF you need that 4kw, get a 5kw array.
    All are guestimates using Canadian solar panels and assuming the angles of the panels to the sun are ok-ish to good.



    Quote Originally Posted by Die SwartKat View Post
    Keep the MPPT - +-2kw on it, so you may want to get a 2nd one later? You are saying, once I'm ready to go to a 48V system, I just select this on the controller and then it could do 2000W? And then later to expand my system to 4000W, I just add another one later? Can the Multiplus II handle both of these? Or 3 or more?
    Yes, the 150/xxx ranges are 12/24/48v, either it senses of you make sure and set it.
    You can connect as many MPPT's as you need onto your system yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Die SwartKat View Post
    Get a Victron Multiplus II 3kva +-R15k - future proof it ito grid tying. I'm on 24V. It looks like these units can run in parallel to double my system to 48V and 6000W should I get another one later. Or would it make more economical sense to get a 5Kva unit?
    I would move to 48v ... I tried 24v gird-tied, it works perfectly, but 48v is just easier.
    Yes, you can connect up to 6 identical inverters in parallel - if you must.
    The only difference between 1 x 5kva (4kw) and 2 x 3kva (4.8kw), is the price. I guess it is like R25k vs R30k for 2 x 3kva's.
    And having two gives redundancy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Die SwartKat View Post
    VenusGX, Carlo Gavazzi + cable +-R5k - need that for grid-tying.
    Other odds and sods extra - always are. I've read what you said about these units and if I understood you correct, these are not crucial now. I could get them later once everything gets fancier?
    Moment you grid tie, not a UPS, you have to have a Venus and Carlo.
    I would start with that if you are committed to Victron, to start getting the data.

    Quote Originally Posted by Die SwartKat View Post
    Run the entire house off solar, and very little batteries, all automated out of the box as per your settings.

    Ok, please talk me in serious layman's terms. With my current needs, how will this Multiplus II do it for me? What can it do?
    I would like to run the house as much as I can on solar and batteries. But I feel I need to be in control with this.
    I will add panels as soon as I can. For now I have a 400Ah AGM battery bank.
    - I want to flip a switch to put the light loads on batteries and solar. Or could the Multi do this for me on pre programmed times?
    Have a read here: https://www.victronenergy.com/live/e...llation-manual
    ESS is where the magic automatically happens.
    On your 400ah AGM bank, with a BMV, you set the SOC to say 80% / DOD 20% because you only want to use 20% of the batts being lead acid. 20% being their sweet spot ito cycles irght?
    Once you set that on ESS, you let the system do its thing.
    Next level, you may want to run a Cron Job like I do, to further tweak your usage IF that is needed. That is University level thread chat ... ideal if we have a a few Victron users here, to go to that level.


    Quote Originally Posted by Die SwartKat View Post
    - I do need a 2nd db for this yes? So that the heavy element consumers are always on the grid?
    - is it a good idea to install a manual change over switch between the grid db and the battery db?

    It seems as if the wiring is going to be nightmare. Or not?
    There is a 40 meter distance between Multi in the garage, and the grid db in the house.
    The Multi must get ac power from the grid db in the house, and then another ac line needs to run back from it into the house for a 2nd db? Or do I have it wrong as to how this unit works or must be wired up?
    Yes, you do need a 2nd DB. Why? in very simplistic terms, all the loads you want kept powered off the batts goes onto that DB.

    I'm not a sparkie, but the wiring is simple.
    From the main DB there is a wire to the garage already, right?
    So I would guess, sparkies to confirm, all you need is to connect the Multi AC_In to that DB in the garage, using a double pole breaker.
    Then from the Multi AC_Out1, a wire goes, as you said, to the 2nd DB in the house, the DB that has the Always On loads you want powered off batteries at night when Eskom is off.
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  8. #166
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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by Gerlach View Post
    Well, if you running good quality pannels and it's mount at the rite angle, and you got the rite gear with it, then it can make way more power then the array size. I got a 2.9kw array and on a good clear summer days it can generate over 3.2kw. I added a pic where my mppt was busy while i was pulling some big loads. Got some videos that i took where it was busy for some time. Still need to get a wifi unit from microcare to connect to the mppt to send the data to microcare portel.

    TTT got some nice outputs from his 3.5kw array. Some really good outputs!!!! ������
    Yes, on a good summer day,cool but not hot, wind from the East etc.etc..
    Post your average power generation over the last 6 months and let's see if it's close to my 80% average.

    Here are my stats for the last 3 months..

    The panels are at 22.5 Degrees, perfect for JHB Autumn, Spring, OK for summer, disastrous for winter..

    BUT, one can see the differences in generation due to weather, temp etc..Who would have thought I'd be getting more in Winter than in Autumn?

    In Feb, max produced was 31.5kWhr and an average of 21kWhr for the month
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by NewLandy; 2020/06/20 at 12:46 PM.

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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by NewLandy View Post
    But remember, a kettle takes 2000W, a geyser 2-3K W, an iron 1500W and so it goes.
    O, wanted to re-iterate for general consumption:
    The kettle 2kw - so what, it is on 2-3 minutes.

    Geysers, put in a 2kw element and schedule the timer to when there are spare solar, like between 11am-2pm ...

    Tibits:
    Iron is a bastard load, goes on/off all the time, try and schedule it before/after geyser to draw as much from solar as possible.
    Induction plates also bastards, on/off all the time.

    Why I call them bastard loads, 2kw drawn from solar, next second they go off, 2kw pushed back to grid as MPPT steps back ... they come on again, draws 2kw from Eskom for a second or two, MPPT ramps up, supplies all the power again, item goes off again, MPPT takes a few seconds throttle back again ... over and over. :-)
    All happens over seconds ... ITron PAYG meter does not trip at all.

    Mitigate them by running them whilst batteries are being charged. :-)


    Grid-tied It is about shaving off the largest cost component of the Eskom bill, like geysers first, then all the loads <1kw avergae daily loads.

    Always keep in mind: Each watt your solar panels gives you during the day, stored in your batts for evening use, is a watt less spent on Eskom.
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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by NewLandy View Post
    I think the above threads are creating the impression that 3.5KW installed panels is going to give one 3.5kW of power over the day..

    Realistically, if you take 80% of 3.5kW installed panels you will get 2800W of power over a maximum of 4 hours of the day..The other 8 hours you will get from 0 to 2800W back to 0 again.

    It follows a normal distribution curve.....
    Just to get a clear picture the 3.5kW can easily even on winter days with sun and no cloud provide 14kWh+ per day even if the peak during the best 4 hours is only 2.8kW per hour. Looking at the picture from Gerlach he gets 3.2kW from his 2.9kW PV installed.

    Your average of 19kWh per day for Feb, 21kWh for April and 25kWh for May is good going.

    The point is that one gets 3.5-5 times the actual panel PV installed per day if you can use it with loads on instead of just charging batteries back to full for later use.

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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Yes, my 5kW panels produce 25kWh per day on a clear day now, and I see peaks of around 5.9kW.

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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by faniedup View Post
    Yes, my 5kW panels produce 25kWh per day on a clear day now, and I see peaks of around 5.9kW.
    You are a very lucky guy indeed. Must think of a way to get hold of your panels.

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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by faniedup View Post
    Yes, my 5kW panels produce 25kWh per day on a clear day now, and I see peaks of around 5.9kW.
    Are your panels adjustable 're the angle to the sun? Where are you situated?

    At what angle are your panels?

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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    I really don't think it contributes towards sharing the baseline concepts, by starting to compare who's got the biggest and best.

    It inevitably confused the matters endlessly.

    Why? No two arrays will preform the same based on all the environmental factors impacting on it, the alignment of the roof/panels, load demands and times ... each site, based on recorded data over time (array actual performance vs loads), has to be tuned to each individuals needs.

    That is why I said:
    3kva = 2.4kw grid-tied keeping in mind temp derating = 3.5kw array as a good starting point in that you should get 2.4kw out of it duringpeak hours.
    5kva = 4kw grid-tied keeping no temp derating in mind = 5kw array as a good starting point in that you should get 4kw out of it during peak hours.

    The data part comes in when you see either you don't need that size array, or due to whatever factors, you need bigger.

    Yes, there are mathematical calculations, best angle based on GPS co-ordinates, experts to advise etc. Or the top end of the scale ... solar tracking array.

    But no matter what you do or spend, absolutely nothing beats real live usage and experience on YOUR site.

    My hope is to share my experiences, over a decade, that others don't repeat my mistakes.

    By comparing who's got the biggest best kw/H ... is like comparing who's got the biggest d..k.

    When you ask the wive's, allegedly size does not matter, they say how you use it does ... and THAT applies to a T to solar systems.
    Last edited by the_terrible_triplett; 2020/06/20 at 07:20 PM.
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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by Cobus. Pelser View Post
    The 100 units is due to heaters. I donít want to run the heaters, under floor heating through the ups or batteries

    Normal daily load is 36-40 units. Swimming pool, tumble dryer, geyser at night 17:00-22:00
    It seems your primary issue is mainly due to poor energy efficiency.

    I would speak to a specialist HVAC company to compare existing vs. new technology (thermal exchange is likely more efficient and intrinsically cheaper than outright generation) and of course, properly insulating your home yields easy results.

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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by the_terrible_triplett View Post
    I really don't think it contributes towards sharing the baseline concepts, by starting to compare who's got the biggest and best.

    It inevitably confused the matters endlessly.

    Why? No two arrays will preform the same based on all the environmental factors impacting on it, the alignment of the roof/panels, load demands and times ... each site, based on recorded data over time (array actual performance vs loads), has to be tuned to each individuals needs.

    That is why I said:
    3kva = 2.4kw grid-tied keeping in mind temp derating = 3.5kw array as a good starting point in that you should get 2.4kw out of it duringpeak hours.
    5kva = 4kw grid-tied keeping no temp derating in mind = 5kw array as a good starting point in that you should get 4kw out of it during peak hours.

    The data part comes in when you see either you don't need that size array, or due to whatever factors, you need bigger.

    Yes, there are mathematical calculations, best angle based on GPS co-ordinates, experts to advise etc. Or the top end of the scale ... solar tracking array.

    But no matter what you do or spend, absolutely nothing beats real live usage and experience on YOUR site.

    My hope is to share my experiences, over a decade, that others don't repeat my mistakes.

    By comparing who's got the biggest best kw/H ... is like comparing who's got the biggest d..k.

    When you ask the wive's, allegedly size does not matter, they say how you use it does ... and THAT applies to a T to solar systems.
    Maybe you misunderstood me. I'm trying to workout if/why my system is not performing well when compared to others. That's it, its not a size thing.

    I'm getting max 4.8 kW from a 6kW of array. Others are getting close to 100% generation. I want to know why.

    If we're at the same latitude we should be getting the same generation , hence my questioning.
    Last edited by NewLandy; 2020/06/20 at 07:32 PM.

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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by NewLandy View Post
    Are your panels adjustable 're the angle to the sun? Where are you situated?

    At what angle are your panels?
    One string (1.5kW) sit at 30 deg, the other 1.5kW at 35 deg. Third string 2kW follows tile roof pitch, looks likeapproximately 30 deg.

    Location Pretoria, facing slightly east of North.

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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by the_terrible_triplett View Post
    I really don't think it contributes towards sharing the baseline concepts, by starting to compare who's got the biggest and best.

    It inevitably confused the matters endlessly.

    Why? No two arrays will preform the same based on all the environmental factors impacting on it, the alignment of the roof/panels, load demands and times ... each site, based on recorded data over time (array actual performance vs loads), has to be tuned to each individuals needs.

    That is why I said:
    3kva = 2.4kw grid-tied keeping in mind temp derating = 3.5kw array as a good starting point in that you should get 2.4kw out of it duringpeak hours.
    5kva = 4kw grid-tied keeping no temp derating in mind = 5kw array as a good starting point in that you should get 4kw out of it during peak hours.

    The data part comes in when you see either you don't need that size array, or due to whatever factors, you need bigger.

    Yes, there are mathematical calculations, best angle based on GPS co-ordinates, experts to advise etc. Or the top end of the scale ... solar tracking array.

    But no matter what you do or spend, absolutely nothing beats real live usage and experience on YOUR site.

    My hope is to share my experiences, over a decade, that others don't repeat my mistakes.

    By comparing who's got the biggest best kw/H ... is like comparing who's got the biggest d..k.

    When you ask the wive's, allegedly size does not matter, they say how you use it does ... and THAT applies to a T to solar systems.
    Maybe we should have freedom to discuss our experiences rather than to conform to your preconceived ideas?

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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by the_terrible_triplett View Post
    I really don't think it contributes towards sharing the baseline concepts, by starting to compare who's got the biggest and best.

    It inevitably confused the matters endlessly.

    Why? No two arrays will preform the same based on all the environmental factors impacting on it, the alignment of the roof/panels, load demands and times ... each site, based on recorded data over time (array actual performance vs loads), has to be tuned to each individuals needs.

    That is why I said:
    3kva = 2.4kw grid-tied keeping in mind temp derating = 3.5kw array as a good starting point in that you should get 2.4kw out of it duringpeak hours.
    5kva = 4kw grid-tied keeping no temp derating in mind = 5kw array as a good starting point in that you should get 4kw out of it during peak hours.

    The data part comes in when you see either you don't need that size array, or due to whatever factors, you need bigger.

    Yes, there are mathematical calculations, best angle based on GPS co-ordinates, experts to advise etc. Or the top end of the scale ... solar tracking array.

    But no matter what you do or spend, absolutely nothing beats real live usage and experience on YOUR site.

    My hope is to share my experiences, over a decade, that others don't repeat my mistakes.

    By comparing who's got the biggest best kw/H ... is like comparing who's got the biggest d..k.

    When you ask the wive's, allegedly size does not matter, they say how you use it does ... and THAT applies to a T to solar systems.
    How does genitals come into play here?

    Do you have an inferiority complex

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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Look at the 2 attachments, CT gets on average 3100 sunshine hours/ year, while JHB gets only 1000!

    I find that hard to believe, but who knows.
    So yes, your 3.5KW array in CT probably produces 2-3 times more power as the equivalent array in JHB.
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  23. #179
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by NewLandy View Post
    Look at the 2 attachments, CT gets on average 3100 sunshine hours/ year, while JHB gets only 1000!

    I find that hard to believe, but who knows.
    So yes, your 3.5KW array in CT probably produces 2-3 times more power as the equivalent array in JHB.
    I always thought Pretoria was sunny until I installed solar, the you get to notice how much cloud cover we get in summer

  24. #180
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    Default Re: Solar System for Home ( yet another :)

    Quote Originally Posted by NewLandy View Post
    Maybe you misunderstood me. I'm trying to workout if/why my system is not performing well when compared to others. That's it, its not a size thing.

    I'm getting max 4.8 kW from a 6kW of array. Others are getting close to 100% generation. I want to know why.

    If we're at the same latitude we should be getting the same generation , hence my questioning.
    Absolutely misunderstood. My apologies ... in my defense, it seldom happens like this. Again, my apologies.
    But, it also derails the thread from new knowledge to what is this problem.
    Then again, if done right, problems like this can share knowledge faster!

    So lets try.

    Generally speaking ... Why an array does not preform is a tough one to find.
    The most obvious:
    Are there enough loads to make the array work at peak performance?
    Angle of the array as best as it can be for where you are?
    Do you get the peak volts from the panels when the system is unloaded i.e. close as damn to the max volts the panels van give?
    When last did you check the wires between all the panels?
    Wire size acceptable or large voltage drop?
    Are the settings correct on the system? As I wrote, if you limit a Victron inverter, the DC side, the overall system performance drops so you never see peak array performance either.
    And the fuses, all fine?
    Shading?
    Anyone else any ideas to check?

    If all salient stuff has been checked and all is fine, then it gets rather uncomfortable, BUT has to be asked, and not necessarily answered here ...
    The Quality of the:

    Panels?
    MPPT?
    Inverter?

    For some has replace parts on same setup, and have seen a marked performance increase / decrease on either the same array i.e. new MPPT/Inverter.
    Or same equipment, different brand of panels.

    FWIW: That is why I mention Canadian solar, to keep talking apples for apples.


    I wrote that I have 5 strings on 5 NoArk breakers.
    Why: Exactly for this reason. I can switch them all off, and then swtich each string on, one by one, then off for the next one, to see if any string misbehaves.
    Got gatvol of wondering if the array preforms see.
    Last edited by the_terrible_triplett; 2020/06/20 at 08:17 PM.
    Political Correctness
    Political Correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional illogical minority, rabidly promoted by a unscrupulous mainstream media which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd ... by the clean end!

    Saw this in a pub - no idea why the wife does not see it so:
    I'm not opinionated ... I'm just always right!

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