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  1. #81
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Just when I think I have a plan then you guys stretch my brain.

    For this discussion I'm parking my current small sytem with 4 panels on that 1 is doing its job and I'm using an already installed gas system. This side will stay the same.

    Looking at two cottages and the auditorium. Current system 5kw Must Inverter with 6 Panels. If I connect either of the geysers to this the inverter trips.

    What is better 1 system with 10 panels or two systems one with 6 and 1 with 4?

    Its a lot less wiring and accessories if I do 1 system. If I repair one of the spare Kodak 7.2 kw Inverters and replace the Must Inverter with a 7.2 Kodak and add 4(total 10 panels) or 6( total 12 panels) panels here. Add geyser timer so that they do not run simultaneously and only run in the day. With Keith's help I know the Kodak well enough to optimise it. I can now choose battery charging or a geyser. I can also see the nearly new Must 5kw and get some moola back. This is the cheapest option.

    The other option is leave the system that is working alone and just setup a new system specifically for the geysers. Repair 1 of the Kodak Inverters and add enough panels to drive 1 geyser at a time. Totally new installation so another solar db board etc.

  2. #82
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    I donít want to stretch your brain further, but I solved my problemÖ.

    In 2020 (covid time) I installed a 250 litre solar geyser (no mains) in series with my 150 litre 220V geyser with a high temp pressure pump between the two geysers. Currently I donít heat up the 150 litre geyser, because it does not drop below 55C. The solar geyser heats up to close to 90C and sometimes even more on a good sunny day. My wife only bathsÖ.in a swimming pool and I shower in the morning. End temp just below 60C.

    In short my solution was to have enough volume (400 litre in total). Price of geyser and pump was R11K.

    Next time around I will use a high pressure geyser. That pump in the roof is noisy

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  4. #83
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    I want to plant a seed.

    Consider a true hybrid inverter like 5Kw Sunsynk or Deye, even better if you can stretch finances for a 8Kw.

    This way you can have the geysers/stoves on non essential and have all available solar assist in getting your electricity bill down. Throw a solar array, matching or exceeding the geyser element Kw draw into the equation and Bobs your uncle.

    You can install a simple switch that will automatically turn on the second geyser once the first is heated and prevent both from running at the same time.

    Obviously it makes sense to run the geysers at the time it favors your panel orientation to get the best return and see the least supplement from Eskom should it be necessary. In most cases I imagine it would be between 10am and 2 pm if North facing.

    Up the geyser temperature to say 65 degrees and retained heat should be fine for a hot shower the next morning.

    You do mention three phase somewhere in your posts, so this may complicate matters.

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  6. #84
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by bloudraad View Post
    I want to plant a seed.

    Consider a true hybrid inverter like 5Kw Sunsynk or Deye, even better if you can stretch finances for a 8Kw.

    This way you can have the geysers/stoves on non essential and have all available solar assist in getting your electricity bill down. Throw a solar array, matching or exceeding the geyser element Kw draw into the equation and Bobs your uncle.

    You can install a simple switch that will automatically turn on the second geyser once the first is heated and prevent both from running at the same time.

    Obviously it makes sense to run the geysers at the time it favors your panel orientation to get the best return and see the least supplement from Eskom should it be necessary. In most cases I imagine it would be between 10am and 2 pm if North facing.

    Up the geyser temperature to say 65 degrees and retained heat should be fine for a hot shower the next morning.

    You do mention three phase somewhere in your posts, so this may complicate matters.
    Thank you. Yes 1 day I will upgrade but I make small additions as and when money is available which makes the steps small and not always best but what can be done.

    I'm not doing 3 phase currently just doing specific phases where I can.

    I have two broken 7.2 kodak inverters that won't cost much to repair. A big Dye or Sunsilk with more panels will have a ROi of a few years and I can't afford that now.

    I know those who could throw 100s of thousands at Solar must laugh at my piecemeal approach. Maybe just shake their head in disbelief but it is what it is and this way I'm enjoying a project.

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  8. #85
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal Hannes View Post
    I know those who could throw 100s of thousands at Solar must laugh at my piecemeal approach. Maybe just shake their head in disbelief but it is what it is and this way I'm enjoying a project.
    No.

    I did same as you, one part at a time. Sometimes a good buy, sometimes not. Sell it on when I'm done with a part when upgrading.

    NOTHING wrong with that.

    Best thing, you truly learn how it all works, fits together, what works better for you.

    Also makes one appreciate the finer details one day in the final product, cause then you know what you want and why.
    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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  10. #86
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal Hannes View Post
    Thank you. Yes 1 day I will upgrade but I make small additions as and when money is available which makes the steps small and not always best but what can be done.

    I'm not doing 3 phase currently just doing specific phases where I can.

    I have two broken 7.2 kodak inverters that won't cost much to repair. A big Dye or Sunsilk with more panels will have a ROi of a few years and I can't afford that now.

    I know those who could throw 100s of thousands at Solar must laugh at my piecemeal approach. Maybe just shake their head in disbelief but it is what it is and this way I'm enjoying a project.
    Iím not looking down at your approach at all. Sometimes it is the only way to go about it.

    But, you do seem to have a rather large electricity bill and considering a possible 5K or even 10K repair cost versus the benefits and savings likely to be had from a new 5KW hybrid inverter @ R20k is worth the consideration in my opinion.
    You could always start with less panels and still reap the benefit of the blended supply, then add panels later as your budget allows, bearing in mind that your panel choice should allow for the best future expansion in terms of the inverter mppt max Voltage.

    I recon you could probably offset the extra R10k or call it R15k saved should you have the Kodak fixed within a year if not less by getting a full hybrid inverter, even if you end up just throwing 2Kw solar at both geysers initially.

    After year one, the figures should really start making sense, especially if you can start adding some panels to offset Escom tariff increases, to the point where you may need to add an additional battery should your production exceed your consumption.
    Last edited by bloudraad; 2024/02/23 at 02:14 PM.

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  12. #87
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal Hannes View Post

    What is better 1 system with 10 panels or two systems one with 6 and 1 with 4?
    .
    Say during the day each system has 500W not used. If you want to run say a 800W+ load neither can power the load. If these panels were on inverters in parallel you can power the load from PV. If the 6 and 4 panels were on 1 inverter each then this 1000W goes to waste.

    Answers will be different for inverters in parallel, batteries in parallel to the inverters. Even a 8kW single inverter can at times be better than 2x5kW except that 2 similar 5kW inverters could use more PV.

    I like the idea of upscaling to full hybrid inverters in time as Bees mentioned.

    Further for now at say R5000 a pop I would repair those Kodaks and get some panels on them as panels are cheap for the power you will be saving.

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  14. #88
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Ekke kan I will follow up on your contact to repair the inverters and then make a decision.

  15. #89
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal Hannes View Post
    Ekke kan I will follow up on your contact to repair the inverters and then make a decision.
    I just want to share again the power of this forum. Ekkekan's contact is repairing my two inverters at less than 10% of what Kodak themselves quoted.

    Dankie baie!

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  17. #90
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Grumble grumble grumble?

    I have a long frustrating story of 3 days in the dark but I will type when I'm not on my phone.

    Kodak Inverters and Nenergy batteries are not good combo.

  18. #91
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    I am selling 2x Hubble AM-2 batteries, looking at about R20k ea. Can provide full details. If interest that is of course!
    Edit, and they work well with the Kodak's, I have a the Kodak at the office with a Hubble AM-2 as well.
    Last edited by Dirk; 2024/04/09 at 10:13 PM.

  19. #92
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal Hannes View Post
    I just want to share again the power of this forum. Ekkekan's contact is repairing my two inverters at less than 10% of what Kodak themselves quoted.

    Dankie baie!
    It's a great pleasure. I knew when you mentioned what your quotes were it was just milking the cow.

    Apart from labour spares are readily available for Kodak inverters.

    +1

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  21. #93
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    I'm still on my phone so have grace for fat fingers and small keyboard. Day 4 of no municipal power.

    2.5 of those were rainy and no sun.

    A reminder of my current systems is a 5kw Must inverter with 3 Nenergy batteries and 6 panels and then a separate 7.2 kw Kodak with 2 Nenergy batteries and 4 panels.

    Both these systems are giving separate problems.
    They have both run as well as expected for the last few weeks in such a way that I donr even have to think about it.

    It's not the systems fault that there is no power or no sun. But after being off for two days the sun came out the Must inverter restarted without any issues. The Kodak went into the by now famous P6 mode where it does not see the battery.

    (I've swopped batteries around so I am assuming all Nenergy batteries are behaving the same.)

    Fluffy helped Mr setup a mininimum voltage for the kodak and there has been no problems for weeks.

    Yesterday when the sun came out I had to fetch and carry those heavy batteries from the Must inverter to Jumpstart the Kodak setup.

    Then I made sure everybody uses things sparingly and we were 100% at 5 pm. By 7 pm first the Kodak setup went off and then about half an hour later the Must system also went down.

    Thus morning in bright sunlight the Kodak is on for a second then realizes the battery is in safe mode and switches off. So although the sun is shining brightly I can't use the power because I must wait for the Must to charge 1 of its batteries and then go and fetch them to Jumpstart the Kodak system.

    I will expand on my planning and challenges during the day.

    I' will check today if somehow with the extended outage if the settings that was given by Keith has somehow erased with the long outage.

    I've been told the biggest problem with these Nenergy batteries is very bad BMS and it causes it to go into safe mode long before its necessary. It drops from 50% to zero in no time.

  22. #94
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    The Must Inverter has a quirk it is roughly it overcomes the safe mode of the Nenergy batteries it does not allow power to be used until the batteries are 100%.

    So here we sit so much work to do all these panels and systems. I'm waiting for the Must to have charged enough to go and jump start the Kodak.

    Questions. 1 is it practical and possible to replace the BMs on all 5 Nenergy batteries. A friend is doing this and it is costing him around R 2 k per battery so my 5 batteries

    2 IS there any easier way to Jumpstart the battery and inverter when they have gone into safe mode. Is there something like those that are used to Jumpstart a car.

    3 if I replace the Must with a Kodak .What cable should I use to put the two inverters in parallel. It is roughly 80m between them.

    4 If I had solar assist would it help improving BMS.

  23. #95
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Duolicate.
    Last edited by Mal Hannes; 2024/04/10 at 03:47 PM.

  24. #96
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dirk View Post
    I am selling 2x Hubble AM-2 batteries, looking at about R20k ea. Can provide full details. If interest that is of course!
    Edit, and they work well with the Kodak's, I have a the Kodak at the office with a Hubble AM-2 as well.
    Dirk this is a bit rich for my blood right now. Thank you.

  25. #97
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Does anyone know what a fault 61 is on a Kodak inverter. I can't find it.

    My guess is that my 4 panels are not creating enough power in the winter sun.

  26. #98
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    Angry Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    After a whole day's charging 12.65 %

  27. #99
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal Hannes View Post
    Does anyone know what a fault 61 is on a Kodak inverter. I can't find it.

    My guess is that my 4 panels are not creating enough power in the winter sun.
    Do you have a comms cable between the battery and inverter?
    How is the battery setup on the inverter, user?
    Last edited by Dirk; 2024/04/10 at 08:18 PM.

  28. #100
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    Default Re: Hansie's solar challenges en journey.

    Yes Dirk I have a comms cable.

    I don't understand your second question.

    Very very long night without cpap for me or oxygen for my wife.

    5th day without coj and without Solar working properly.

    Today is beautiful full sun. The battery started on 6% now 1.5 hours of sun later on 4% !

    The inverter shows a yellow light where it is supposed to be green.

    Me and and this manual Is not friends. I can't find any list of faults with what they mean.

    What I can figure out is that solar power is getting in but not properly as before. I'm getting on the roof soon to check every plug on the roof. Maybe these cheap solar panels are not rain resistant.

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