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  1. #61
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    [QUOTE=bees;5186135]Have you shared what panels you’re installing "

    Yes we have installed 4 x450 watt panels from J and I Solar.

    They are all in one string.

    I will add two more in time and then increase battery capacity.

    With this setup I should be able to run 18 hours on Solar and battery and not experience loadshedding in summer.

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  3. #62
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    First small lifestyle change is run the borehole pump midday and not during the night.
    Last edited by Mal Hannes; 2024/02/07 at 03:42 PM.

  4. #63
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    I was so proud of myself setting the parameters for usage but its not doing what I thought it would do. Painting again BOB!

    When the sun went down batteries were at 100% and I was very happy. Started using batteries as it is supposed to on SBU but then when the batteries dropped about 2 % charging kicked in and started using Eskom to recharge the battery.

    So I have to set not only the usage but also the charging (input) parameters.

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  6. #64
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    I recon the fact that the batteries aren’t in comms with the inverter, and the inverter only relying on voltage from batteries, is going to cause some hiccups.

  7. #65
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal Hannes View Post
    I was so proud of myself setting the parameters for usage but its not doing what I thought it would do. Painting again BOB!

    When the sun went down batteries were at 100% and I was very happy. Started using batteries as it is supposed to on SBU but then when the batteries dropped about 2 % charging kicked in and started using Eskom to recharge the battery.

    So I have to set not only the usage but also the charging (input) parameters.
    Yep,

    You need to get solar assistant. It removes the guesswork and trial and error.
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  8. #66
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Some feedback on saving being achieved.

    Our usage on the plot was 100 units per day. Or 3000 units per month. This fluctuated but I will use 100 as my basis for saving calculation.

    This is just below R9000 per month for direct usage before network charges etc.


    Currently we are about 63 units a day.
    Loadshedding stage 6 is helping because often when it wants to use Eskom it can't.

    The monthly saving is 37 x 30 days so 1000 odd units at R 3 so everything at CitiPowers highest rate is saved. A R 3000 saving a month.

    There is still 3 geysers and quite a bit of the plot not on Solar.

    So because I already had the batteries and inverters this cost less than R 40 000. So ROI is about a year. My aim is to get to 50 units per day before spending anymore money.

    As I learn and eventually get two Solar assistants operating I should be able to reduce power even more.

    Added to the +/- R 3000 electricity saved I also save more than a R 1000 rand on generator petrol.
    Last edited by Mal Hannes; 2024/02/11 at 07:42 AM.

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  10. #67
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    This message of this morning was a bit premature.

    Everything has worked well for a few days and nothing has gone into safe mode. A few minutes after I posted this morning about the saving two separate systems went off. Both because of the extended loadshedding and then no sun today.

    The Kodak system has not gone into safe mode since Keith helped my settings. Today it went back into safe mode.

    Generator had to run for 2 hrs and then took another hour to "Jumpstart" the flat batteries. Mow it has 3 and a half hours to charge before another 4 hour outage.
    Last edited by Mal Hannes; 2024/02/11 at 12:39 PM.

  11. #68
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    9 days of smooth running!

    Not so excited about my savings. This was not a high loadshedding stage. Handled stage 6 fine without going into safe mode even when batteries ran out once.

    Doing daily check on total consumption and had come down about 30%. From 100 units per day to 70 units per day.

    Will have to get a 3 phase meter to see which phase is using electricity when.

    I was expecting about a 50% reduction with the total of 10 panels.

    Geysers will go gas and security lights will go to solar lights.

  12. #69
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal Hannes View Post
    9 days of smooth running!

    Not so excited about my savings. This was not a high loadshedding stage. Handled stage 6 fine without going into safe mode even when batteries ran out once.

    Doing daily check on total consumption and had come down about 30%. From 100 units per day to 70 units per day.

    Will have to get a 3 phase meter to see which phase is using electricity when.

    I was expecting about a 50% reduction with the total of 10 panels.

    Geysers will go gas and security lights will go to solar lights.
    What panels? Further up you mention 450w, are all 10 450w? Thats 4.5kwp, if you’re saving 30 units a day, that’s a factor of 6.67, cant get much better than that…

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  14. #70
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by bees View Post
    What panels? Further up you mention 450w, are all 10 450w? Thats 4.5kwp, if you’re saving 30 units a day, that’s a factor of 6.67, cant get much better than that…
    Yes all 10 is 450 watt.

    Can you tell me how do you calculate the factor?

    Edit ok figured it out.
    Last edited by Mal Hannes; 2024/02/20 at 10:43 PM.

  15. #71
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by bees View Post
    What panels? Further up you mention 450w, are all 10 450w? Thats 4.5kwp, if you’re saving 30 units a day, that’s a factor of 6.67, cant get much better than that…
    With the clouds in summer 6.67kwh/kw installed is about the best one can get in Gauteng.

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  17. #72
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal Hannes View Post
    9 days of smooth running!

    Not so excited about my savings. This was not a high loadshedding stage. Handled stage 6 fine without going into safe mode even when batteries ran out once.

    Doing daily check on total consumption and had come down about 30%. From 100 units per day to 70 units per day.

    Will have to get a 3 phase meter to see which phase is using electricity when.

    I was expecting about a 50% reduction with the total of 10 panels.

    Geysers will go gas and security lights will go to solar lights.
    gas geysers are extremely expensive to run. for that monthly price add panels
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  19. #73
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal Hannes View Post
    There is still 3 geysers and quite a bit of the plot not on Solar.
    There's your killer item.

    You say going gas? What is the cost of a gas geyser with installation? What will the total cost be to replace all three? (vs what is the cost of a 8kw inverter with 4 more panels.)

    My daily usage has gone down from 25-30 to 6-10 since the Deye 8KW installation. My geysers (2) now run 99% sun power only, the shower I run for about 30mins in the morning then switch it off, an then it switches on again at 10am and runs with the bathroom geyser until 5pm. I have worked out that conservatively in the past the geysers were about R1200 of my R3000 bill per month.

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  21. #74
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Engel View Post
    gas geysers are extremely expensive to run. for that monthly price add panels
    Hi Herman. I would really like to explore that.


    Let me just recap the situationa plot with two inverters. 1 does office and two cottages other does auditorium and two cottages.

    My problem will not only be more panels but more battery power.

    Our unit is on gas. The geyser uses about a 9kg per month mostly every 5 weeks. R 270 TO R 340 per month.

    That is for 2 people 2 showers each per day.

    The two cottages that I want to put on gas has 3 people in each and runs out of battery power after about 6 hours. so their gas use might be slightly more but it should bring the electricity cost down by thousands and only increase the gas usage by maximum R 600 or 2 x9kg per cottage.

    These are old big geysers I don't currently have the ability to find out exactly how much they are costing in electricity but they must be the big consumers. The occupants are only home after hours so showering when panels are not operating.

    I'd love to hear your thoughts on my plans.
    Last edited by Mal Hannes; 2024/02/21 at 10:59 PM.

  22. #75
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dirk View Post
    There's your killer item.

    You say going gas? What is the cost of a gas geyser with installation? What will the total cost be to replace all three? (vs what is the cost of a 8kw inverter with 4 more panels.)

    My daily usage has gone down from 25-30 to 6-10 since the Deye 8KW installation. My geysers (2) now run 99% sun power only, the shower I run for about 30mins in the morning then switch it off, an then it switches on again at 10am and runs with the bathroom geyser until 5pm. I have worked out that conservatively in the past the geysers were about R1200 of my R3000 bill per month.


    I can repair one of the broken Kodak 7.2 kw inverters hopefully for less than the R 10k that Kodak quoted and then 4 panels and wiring less than R 10k.

    But what battery would I have to add to run 2 geysers.

    This would most probably be a better option because it will be more flexible than the gas geysers.

    Hmm power of the forum again. This would sort out two cottages that is close to each other and then I will go back to the drawing board for the 3rd one.

  23. #76
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    I don't run my geysers off battery, sun power only. The key is it keep the geyser powered for as long as possible and get it nice and hot.
    Insulate the geyser and the pipes as well.

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  25. #77
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Will 4 panels be enough to warm 2 geysers.

    4 x450 =1800 watt.

    So run 1 geyser from 6am to 12 and the other from 12 to 6 pm.

  26. #78
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal Hannes View Post
    Will 4 panels be enough to warm 2 geysers.

    4 x450 =1800 watt.

    So run 1 geyser from 6am to 12 and the other from 12 to 6 pm.
    EDIT: if you have a 1kW element ...

    Depends on the geyser element wattage to make it totally "free" of Eskom:
    2kw then get 5 x 450w = 2.250kW - so +-2kw, the 80% efficiency of the panels.
    3kw then 7 x 450w = 3.15kW so some Eskom will be used.
    Last edited by the_terrible_triplett; 2024/02/22 at 04:41 PM.
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  28. #79
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    I don't think so, but not sure.

    My geysers are on the non-essential side of the inverter, and I have 14 panels in total, but both geysers with 2kw elements so I can run them at the same time, 8am till 5pm.

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  30. #80
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Thanks guys this will be a better option than the gas. Even if it is slightly more expensive than the gas geysers for installation but free forever then it works.

    Will keep you informed

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