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    • Hello.. I want to install 14 panels however I only have space for 8 in the N direction and 3 in the NE and 3 in the E. 

      My question is those that are placed in the NE and E direction.. Typically what time would PV production start and for how long? 
      • 11 replies
    • New Solar Journey
      Good day all,

      Just need some advice on my solar setup which was installed recently in the Pietermaritzburg Kzn region.

      I have 6 panels (415w each) mounted on my north side roof and 6 panels (415w each) on the westerly side closer to north.

      Now the issue I found is that I am not receiving the total possible production from this setup. In fact the total I noticed was 3.5kw which is a good 1.5kw roughly shy.

      Is this seasonal related because the sun is shining well these days however the angle of the sun has altered itself as oppose to summer?

      If you guys have some recommendations let me know. 

      • 27 replies
    • Hi All,

      I have been reading most of the discussions here for last couple of months and now finally made up my mind on the installation. I want to achieve the following and reduce the electricity bill

      1. Power during load shedding

      2. Daytime energy savings and

      3. Use the battery to meet the evening demand

      We are a family of 4 (us two and two kids) and a family of two (tenant) in the cottage.

      I am thinking of the following configuration

      1. Sunsynk - 5Kwh

      2. Panel - 455w * 12

      3. Battery - 7,2Kwh

      Please let me know if this should be sufficient to generate enough power during the summer and winter. I am aware that I will still have to use grid for the shortfall, but I am hoping it won't be too much.

      Here is the list of some of the things we use, 2 geysers (200L which I recently retrofitted to solar geyser and 150L), 2 fridges, 2 washing machines, 2 microwaves, 2 electric ovens, 2 toasters, 2 TVs, 2 electric kettles, 2 irons, 2 grinders, pool pump, electric motor, electric fence.
      • 10 replies
    • Good day all.

      So I've been studying up like a ferret, my head's jam packed - numbers going up, numbers going down. And now my noggin's turned into 'slap-pap'. I have a few very basic (read dof) questions, hoping someone can set me straight...


      How does one calculate the 'surge draw' from a fridge? (Spec sheet only tells me consumption per annum and 24hr-period)

      Can I literally attach (plug) a cable from the wall socket into the inverter to charge my battery? (when I want, and this to avoid wiring into DB)

      Can I also feed out a cable from the inverter to an adaptor off of which I'm to run a laptop, fridge?

      And does this cable have to be of certain spec or can "normal" extension lead do?


      I came across this statement from "Solar Shop" website Re: Pylontech batteries:

      "Transformer based inverters or Victron Inverters specifically specify a 100% continuous discharge current from the batteries. As an example for a 5kva Victron which is 4kW the battery requirement would be 4000W/48V = 83A continuous discharge from the batteries. In this case a full 3x US3000 or 4x US2000 batteries would be required."

      The webpage also started by saying with 'high frequency inverters'  the 'batteries supported continuous discharge current can be 70% of the inverters capacity', eg "5000W/48V = 105A...the supported continuous battery discharge current can be 73.5A" (ie 105-30%)


      With this in mind and having seen comments here and there across many platforms of "Inverters destroying batteries" or "sucking them dry" could someone please explain this? What's going on here?

      I mean, does it mean your batteries/pack always have to be massive? (Meaning you cannot initially invest in a larger inverter?).

      And where on the various data-sheets is this nugget of info hidden?


      Or perhaps a link to an explanation. My Goggle searches are proving fruitless.


      As I said, not the brightest questions but thanks nonetheless.



      • 12 replies
    • This has definitely been the steepest learning curve I've had so far! I was asked by the family to help out with a solar/ backup solution. They have been plagued by major outages where they stay due to roadworks closeby. The contractor has damaged the mains feed cable to their complex resulting in at least 5 occurrences of power outages lasting 3-6 days at a time this year (over and above the load shedding we've all experienced.

      I now have around 10 quotes to choose from and am really worse off than before.... The information and ideas from this forum have given me a lot of knowledge - thank you all!

      Can I please ask for some user feedback on your systems that you've installed, to get an idea of whether there is something to really look for or to stay away from:

      Which Inverter brand? - score and rate them for me 1-5 (5 highest = best)






      Battery brands to consider? - score and rate them for me 1-5 (5 highest = best)



      Alpha - goes with Alpha-ESS



      FoxBox (goes with Fox Box)

      Are all solar panels the same? Do they all perform the same, or is there some tweak that makes one good or bad?

      Canadian Solar

      JA Panels



      Is the Tesla Powerwall a good option to go for? Its expensive but appears to do everything in one box! Your ideas please?

      Thank you very much for guiding a total newbie...........





      • 13 replies
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    • Thank you.  So there must have been a fix then on the 4.3 tool.
    • I have this one from Takealot. https://www.takealot.com/oci-vm-value-3kva-2-4kw-1kw-mppt-102-vdc-hybrid-off-grid-inverte/PLID72935564 Thanks, will have a look at Kodak models.
    • Looks good.  Are these good batteries to choose compared to similar options. What advantage do they have? How is the support on them?
    • @DJI I would. Either the supplier must offer a fix or take it back. Which model do you have? If you are going to use an Axpert type inverter go for Kodak as they have proper backup and 3 year warranty.   
    • Hi did you manage to sort out this problem? And what was the solution 
    • They shouldn't have gone over voltage then. Have you got a usb to rs485 lead? If not best to get one and see what battery view says.
    • Hi Zsde, I tried all kinds of tricks there is out there. Ended up talking back to the Growatt support and they recommended that I use ISP TOOL 4.3 which worked like a charm. (if you need the tool, i've already attached it to my post on another forum - https://diysolarforum.com/threads/growatt-spf-5000es-firmware-update.35171/page-3#post-508910)
    • A associate of mine has been approached to source an Engineer's report on a situation where a generator was connected to the top of an incoming breaker WITHOUT any isolation switches. The back feed has apparently damaged equipment upstream. The extent of the damage has been determined and need to be explained in the report. The appropriate fees will be paid for by the parties concerned. Please contact me on 082 413 4614 [email protected]
    • Morning @jacksdad.   The unit is still available.   Gavin
    • Another large battery manufacturer making the switch from NMC to LFP! I was going to share this in the NMC vs LFP thread but i see it got locked .  South Korean battery manufacturer LG Energy Solution presented its latest innovations at the Smarter E event in Munich last week. It also announced its transition from nickel-manganese-cobalt (NMC) battery chemistry to lithium iron phosphate (LFP) in its future products. Flexibility is at the heart of the latest battery storage innovations coming from South Korean battery company LG Energy Solution. As seen at the Smarter E event in Munich last week, the business has gone one step further in modularizing its RESU Flex home battery system. It has also developed a new containerized, grid-scale energy storage solution that is delivered pre-assembled. True to its name, the modular RESU Flex residential battery storage solution can be installed in various capacities, ranging from to 8.6 kWh to 17.2 kWh, with more than 30 different installation forms to maximize space efficiency. According to customer preferences, RESU Flex can be installed on any surface, indoor or outdoor, said the manufacturer. Depending on the configuration, RESU Flex has a voltage range of 192 V to 531.2 V and can serve different energy usage patterns. The 8.6 kWh system, which features two battery modules and a battery protection unit, is primarily designed to support self-consumption, shaving peak hour loads and back-up critical loads in emergency. The three-battery module unit with 12.9 kWh capacity can cover energy-consuming devices, such as heat pumps and EVs, as well as provide back up to critical loads in emergency. The 17.2 kWh system is well-equipped for a wide range of applications from home to small C&I, as well as a whole home backup, depending on the functionality of the inverter. The battery module measures 665.2 mm x 665.2 mm x 148.4 mmm and weighs in at 48.9 kg. All configurations come with a separate battery protection unit which weighs at 16.6 kg. The operating temperature range goes from -10 C to 50 C. The product also features an IP55 protection level. In addition to single-phase inverters, RESU Flex is compatible with three-phase inverters made by Kostal, Fronius, SMA and GoodWe. As Jorg Jurgens, LGES director of energy storage systems EMEA, confirmed to pv magazine, RESU Flex is readily available for shipment. If ordered today, it would be delivered in just a couple of weeks, which is much faster than the time frames offered by most battery manufacturers. Current order waiting times are around five months in Germany, for example. The new RESU Flex series will feature the NMC battery chemistry. The South Korean manufacturer has long been faithful to NMC, but it now plans to develop and release LFP-standard cells by October 2023 and LFP long cells by the fourth quarter of 2024. Jurgens told pv magazine that the transition will be a smooth one, as the LFP cells will be produced in the same format and sizes, so the systems will be able to use the same modules and racks as before. The new battery cells will be made in Holland in the US state of Michigan, with double-digit gigawatt-scale production lines being added to the facility, Jurgens said. This aligns with an earlier announcement from LG Energy Solution that it is pouring in $1.7 billion to increase the production capacity for battery cells and packs at the Michigan plan, up fivefold from 5 GWh at present. Residential recalls  The switch to the safer nickel and cobalt-free battery chemistry follows LG Energy Solution's forced recall of some of its battery energy storage systems in the United States and Australia due to potential fire-related risks. In March 2021, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) issued a recall notice for batteries in LG Energy Solution's lithium-ion RESU residential range, due to the potential risk of overheating and catching fire. Only a couple of months later, LG Energy Solutions itself launched a free replacement program for certain models that were manufactured between April 2017 and September 2018. The replacement program, which was assessed to cost around $350 million, was announced after overheating incidents were reported. Last August, LG Energy Solution Michigan launched a recall campaign for its RESU 10H batteries in the US market that affected about 10,000 storage systems. “The home batteries can overheat, poising a risk of fire and emission of harmful smoke,” the manufacturer said at the time. The recall was launched on the back of five reports of the lithium storage batteries smoking and catching on fire, resulting in property damage and one injury. The first recall of its residential batteries in the United States took place only weeks after the manufacturer launched the new line of products in December 2020. It affected 1,815 RESU 10H units sold between January 2017 and March 2019. The reason behind the recall were reports of LG Chem RESU 10H fires resulting in minor property damage but no injuries. Other innovations that LG Energy Solutions presented last week in Munich include the new container-based ESS solution is delivered fully assembled at the factory. It said this reduces the site installation time by 40% and cost by 30%. Compared to conventional 40-foot ISO systems, the modular and scalable containerized ESS solution reduces the installation area by 15%, saving costs incorporated with land. It is designed as more than a simple battery rack system, incorporating an active ventilation system, a fire suppression system and a HVAC system. The company also showcased other high-performance, grid-based ESS products in its portfolio, including a high-voltage rack (1,400V) and the Transportable Rack 1300, a pre-engineered rack system optimized for indoor conditions. https://www.pv-magazine.com/2022/05/18/lg-energy-solution-unveils-new-battery-storage-solutions-moves-to-lfp/  
    • Have been using Solar Assistant since Oct2021 and with the local support and regular updates it provides you with all the essential information. Can highly recommend it.  
    • Based on all your graphs there seems to be a problem. The fact that your panels keep on dropping to zero PV is not right. Also one must ensure you have enough load connected at all times to work out what you should be producing. Also there must be no shading. Further the area of the install needs to be known so that other members can provide the it output based on the weather of a specific day. If you were in Gauteng I can provide details of the maximum you could expect. As far as the output goes your inverter should have access to the power produced by PV by looking at the volts x amps from the panels on the left hand side of display if you scroll through the values. But pressing the down array about 5 times the values for power used for loads will come up on the right hand side. Not spot on as mine gives the same reading for Watts and VA while the Watts should be quite a bit lower if motors are running like fridges. It does at least help to give an indication Sorry to see your battles with the system.
    • Ok Adding to everything Above ... I spoke to another installer and he tells me that the PV Power Reflected by this Inverter is not the Power Produced by the Inverter but rather the "Charging Power" so essential the numbers reflected are indicative of what I am using and not what I am producing  Right now I feel like a sick person googling their symptoms after a Stomach ache and all Google tells me is that I am going to die .... My Gut feeling is there is something not right but I am not informed enough to actually know if this is the case.
    • Hi Sidewinder, the Inverter is an RCT Axpert MK4 5.6k- 48V and the MPPT Voltage Range is 120~430Vdc and the Max. PV Array Open Circuit Voltage is 450 Vdc
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