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Thread: Solar workout for Christmas

  1. #31
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    May 2011
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    Quote Originally Posted by Winni View Post
    Try winter sun in New England, you have to oversize so much.... assuming you can get outside to clear the panels from the snow.
    No thanks. While I do like the cold, I would rather deal with hurricanes, tornadoes, and ice storms instead of feet of snow and a low hanging sun.
    Prepare for the worst, hope for the best

  2. #32
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    It has now been about a year since I decided to test out my small system, and so Iím repeating this test but with a completely new setup. The setup now consists of a 245 watt 24 volt panel, 450 amp/hr battery bank, and a brand new MPPT charge controller.

    The power inverters are still the same, and from the tests last year my small 300 watt inverter will work better on this setup and will pull less power than my big inverter. The one upgrade that I am working on today is upgrading the power wires on the small inverter from 14 gauge to 8 gauge. Iím also shortening the wires from7í long to 3í long so that should help decrease resistance even more.
    Prepare for the worst, hope for the best

  3. #33
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    Sounds like some good engineering decisions. Interested to see what differences you notice.
    In a crazy world, it's the crazy man who can get by - and it's about to get cray-cray up in here.

  4. #34
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    I just turned the lights on. Battery voltage is at 13.2 volts(this battery bank is in MUCH better shape compared to the old one), and the 20 year old Sima power inverter. Iíll check back in a couple of hours to see what the voltage is at.


    On a side note, the 2 old batteries are still hooked up to the 50 watt solar panel via a PWM charge controller and is being used as a backup power system. There is then a third small system (50 amp/hr battery and 18 watt solar panel) that is a backup to the backup. Because 2 is 1 and 1 is none.
    Prepare for the worst, hope for the best

  5. #35
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    2 and a half hours later and the battery bank voltage was sitting at 12.6 volts with the small power inverter on and running all of the lights(3 strands of 66 feet each and one strand that is 27 feet long). About 2 minutes later the battery bank was sitting at 12.7 volts.
    Prepare for the worst, hope for the best

  6. #36
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    After just 1 hour this morning the battery bank is already fully charged!


    I will have to run the lights longer tonight to see how it all does.
    Prepare for the worst, hope for the best

  7. #37
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    Today I added another 27í strand and then ran the system for 3 and a half hours. The voltage was checked right before the power inverter was turned off. Battery voltage was slightly lower as expected but only down by 0.05 volts to 12.55! This is great news due to the fact that it does not look like the battery bank is phased much at all from this load.

    For reference, since adding the additional strand of lights, power consumption should be right at 6 amps. Should our power go out for an extended period of time, 2 fans, lights, and charging of devices can all be done at a usage of only 3 amps.
    Prepare for the worst, hope for the best

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