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Explosions and expensive lessons...



Many of you will have noticed that I have been absent from the forum for a while, and there are reasons, a few related to power that I will relay, but a few personal which I will keep to myself...

But anyway... I eventually after 4 months got my battery equalisers from overseas... What a headache... They might have been cheaper than the local alternatives, but the effort and chasing that had to go into simple import of balancers were a pain in the butt!

He he - You know life wants to beat you down sometimes when you have another two battery failures on the day you receive your hard earned balancing kit!

So, another two Calcium Long Life batteries have just failed on my system today... working perfectly 3 days ago on last test... but they failed dismally today.... Anyway, such is the life of a new entrant to the Solar game... Learning can be expensive...

Hopefully, this just re-iterates a previous blog, do your homework!... Batteries are expensive, but even if wrong they can still cover something... Stick to the rule I mentioned under Mistake 2! Right batteries for the right job (PS: financially I couldn't follow my own advise and just got stung again... Seriously, I am my own worst enemy sometimes).

Genuinely, I can't afford to buy R40k worth of batteries for a 2-3 hour backup system, so we, as a group here on the forum, have to try find ways to limit the cost for the Joe Blogs out there...

I am despondent at the moment about people, not about the technology, maybe it's time that a closer physical group, like a small road or complex (some have already tried, and some have succeeded)... We just need to push this model within our own neighbourhoods...

Did you ever once consider that you might be generating more than your own needs and offer the balance to your neighbour to reduce their bill????

My small rant over today, but I hope it gives you a thought about how we can use our knowledge to help in your own area... Just keep thinking... Nothing is perfect, and nothing is free. but give a few moments to think about how your excess generation can help... Then some ideas on how that excess can be given to your town/village/neighbour without stupid transmission costs....




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Hi KLEVA, sorry to hear about your batteries. Was it the wrong application? Not a proper match between different components of the system? Would be interested to hear why they failed.

About your idea, is it not illegal to sell/give electricity to neighbours? I was under the impression that we are only allowed to buy electricity from Eskom/municipality?


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Jip, it is illegal.

The calcium ones I had, as I recall are maintenance free ones, maybe 250 cycles. Found these better 105ah batts that you can add water to, giving you double that for a similar price better.

But then Kleva, 40k for batts is quite a large bank - can you not reduce the load that must be powered by the bank and get a smaller bank, Eskom as backup? Then batts are used primarily for Eskom failures and some light loads at night?.

The price difference between a calcium 12v 102ah batt and 2 x 6v 225ah T105RE are rough, but doable, if you have 12v or 24v. If you have a 48v bank ... nothing I can say then. ;)

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Getting annoyed at what I get notified about sometimes on this forum - TTT, I apologise, I only read comments today while looking for something else.

Yes, my batts are absolute crap for solar use (as I have found out), but I am stuck with them for a while (money is in short supply for a junior software developer).

I think I just want to be in a place that the solar power I get can be stored properly... After about 2/3 hours sunlight my batts are full, the rest goes to waste.

Edited by KLEVA
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PS: It's illegal to sell electricity, not illegal to give it away free... (or bundled with other service fees in a complex - hint hint)

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Listen, I have sold older batts, trade panels for older batts, every solar part I have bought I either burnt our or sold to get new parts and I have been instrumental in Edmund selling his inverter and batts to Paul. My point, there is a market for 2nd hand parts.

Why not sell your batts before they are done? The better the price, the faster they go and then start new?

Yes, in me selling, I drop the price to sell for either I keep the price and am stuck or I drop the price and sell it and get more than something back towards the new part.

And my insistence that 2nd hand batts will work for milk money systems ... ;-) 

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