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Thank you for the great forum, Safe Driving over the weekend. Sincerely Jason

Peter Topp

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Peter Topp last won the day on December 29 2019

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  1. This is typical when a gas geyser does not get enough water flow and it will switch off. This can be due to low mains pressure or someone else using the cold water at the same time. I have a booster pump to help with this as we had a problem with municipal supply. So if anyone wants to install a gas geyser it is advisible to check your water flow before considering to install one.
  2. Gas geysers have become more efficient lately as they now has forced fan and smart gas control so that you can set then on a specific temperature. I suppose they will be still more expensive per watt for heating however and they are great for load shedding. I think this is that is what people on this forum are most interested in and looking for an alternative to mains power because of load shedding and power outages which seems to be our lot in South Africa and will continue for some time to come.
  3. This is my experience with evac tubes.. I do not have the most efficient tubes. I know there are better ones out there. In winter and cloudy days they are useless. My wife and I also like to shower in the morning and by this time the water in the geyser has cooled to below 30 degrees and I need to use the gas geyser to heat the water. If I want to get the best out of the tubes I will have to change my habits which I am reluctant to do. I suppose the most efficient way all the time is to have a geyser that is super isolated or use gas. I use the gas geyser as this only heats the water when I need it. Gas per watt is more expensive than electricity however their are no losses as with a electric geyser that continually needs to be heated up as the water cools. Lucky for me I have combination of all 4 choices (mains, evac tubes, gas and inverter with batteries and pv panels) each which can be activated at any time except the evac tubes which are permanently in use.
  4. Hi There are many other insights if you read other posts n this section. To add to my suggestion above I would use a dc solid state relay for temp control using the existing thermostat and a normal 30amp switch to switch from dc to ac and only switch when there no direct light to avoid arching problems.
  5. Hi You can try Full Circle Solar for the inverter FCS 3Kva-VP- 3000w at R6499.00. II am almost sure it is made by Voltronic as is the RCT. As far as the batteries you could opt for two 12v Life batteries in series. You would also pay tax on an overseas order.
  6. Hi I do not have any experience in fitting dc elements however dc elements and ac elements will work the same as it a resistive load and does not change with dc if the voltage and current is the same. You do not have to change your element. This means that you have to match the output of the solar panels to a voltage of about 230v dc and a current of about 8.7amps for a 2kw element and 13amps for a 3kw element. (eg: 6 X 330w panels in series will give you about (37.2vdc x 6) 223,2dc volts and can deliver 8,9 amps ). This at optimum sunlight conditions which means you could go slightly higher.(add 1more panel to give 260vdc and 8,9amps) There is another problem which is the thermostat that is commonly used as it does not work well with dc switching. You could use the thermostat to switch a dc contactor that can handle the dc current during temperature control. You need the thermostat so that you do not boil the water or go above about 70 degrees Celsius. It has the same problem that with no sunlight it will not heat the water. You can with using the above method using an appropriate dc switch, switch from solar panels to mains when there no sunlight as you would use the same element. I have a system which uses vacuum tubes to heat my water in a normal geyser which then is fed to a gas geyser. It has also the option to be heated by electricity if I do not have gas and the tubes have not heated the water enough. I set my water temp at 50 degrees Celsius.
  7. Clinobrite does not filter out particles to 1 micron only to about 3 micron. The mesh filters are only for protection if the frp vessel sives are damaged. Changing to auto flush valves to me made a huge difference as I have 5 x frp vessels to backwash. I know what maddox looks like. I am just interested what can dissolve it as this material can be regenerated and reused and should not dissolve. I thought from the photo that the maddox might have broken up into smaller particles giving the photo the black appearance.
  8. Hi I have never heard or seen maddox (greensand) dissolving. Maddox is pretty dense material as can be felt from the weight of the material. The dark brown material is most probably iron. In the pics material looks very dark almost black. The colour of maddox is black so I was thinking it might be maddox. I also see that bottom sive is clogged up as you have mentioned and shown. If there is a lot of pressure it will break which I have experienced and I have installed 130 micron mesh filters after my FRP vessels to prevent material entering the rest of my system if this should happen. I would look into what dissolved the maddox as this does not seem normal. I would love to hear from anyone who knows what caused this problem with the Maddox.
  9. Hi Some interesting facts on my borehole capacity tests I did this morning on my property. The test was done with my existing .75kw borehole pump, stopwatch and a Elster Kent water meter. 05/02/2020 Borehole Capacity Test Test done at 20 Canberra Avenue Impala Park Boksburg Gauteng South Africa 1459 on the 05/02/2020 at starting at 07:43 am. Test done using a .75kw borehole pump, stopwatch and a Elster Kent water meter in a 165 diameter 50m deep borehole. Borehole depth: with casing 45 meters + plus 5 meters without casing. Total 50m. Some resistance from 2 X FRP Clinobrite media filters (Zeolite), 2 X 130µm mesh sediment filters and a 20mm venturi during irrigation. 1 1. Maximum pumping time at 31.8 litres per minutes (time until borehole well is empty while replenishing): 80 minutes. (03974554L 06:43 ------ 0399363 07:43) 2 2. Pumping speed during irrigation until borehole well is empty: 31.8 litres per minute or 1908 litres per hour only for 80 minutes. 3 3. Borehole well capacity without refilling: 1690 litres (1.69 cubic meters). 4 4. Borehole well filling capacity during irrigation (replenishing): 864 litres in 80 minutes. 5 5. Borehole well filling capacity (replenishing): 10.8 litres per minute or 648 litres per hour. 6 6. Time to fill borehole well from empty to full: 157 minutes (1hour 37minutes). 7 7. Steel Casing 2mm thick, inside diameter: 165mm (radius= 82.5mm). 8 8. Height of water from the bottom of the borehole well: 19.75m +1m = (V=πr²) +1 = (1.690/3.14x (0.027225)) +1 =19.75+1= 20.75 meters. Pump sits 1 meter from the bottom of the borehole. 9 9. Volume of water per meter for 19.75 meters +1 meter: 85.564L per meter. 1 10. Water table depth from surface: 50m-20.75m= 29.25 meters. Borehole Capacity Test 05022020.docx
  10. After doing more research I see there is another home assistant that is not commercially sold and it is for the DIY. The switches can all be integrated into this system. I can be run from a local server or a Raspberry Pi. I will be looking further into this. The Home Assistant in my previous post was a system that is commercially sold and professionally installed.
  11. Hi Calypso The Home Assistant is in another league and is certainly not DIY and would beyond the reach of most home owners budget and needs to be installed by professionals. Other than the sound and video and a fancy Media room and control panel the switches I used all have the ability to be set at any time to be turned on and or off and the system has the ability to add alarms, cameras , blind openers, temp and humidity monitors etc. So I would safely say it is DIY Home Automation. It is really automation.
  12. I started by purchasing Chromecast devices all 3 tv's in my home. This was followed by adding 4 google home devices to the house. 1 in the living room, 2 in the bedrooms and 1 in the kitchen. This allowed me to listen any music I liked in the rooms and various other functions. Just before December 2019 I purchased 2wifi RGB smart bulbs for Xmas effects in my living room. I liked the effects and was also chuffed that all of this was voice controlled as the devices were Google Home compatible. I also have a Paradox wireless security alarm, a DVR with 8x outside and 4x inside security cameras all which can be controlled or seen from an app's on my phone. 3 x inside camera's can remotely be adjusted horizontally and vertically with voice control to and from the camera's. My next step was look into other home automation devices. I also did not want to use a lot of different apps on my phone to control the devices.I chose to go with Sonoff and Eachen devices wich use the same phone app and are compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Home.These devices are relatively inexpensive and easy to install. I installed 4 x single gang and 2 x double gang WI-Fi touch wall light switches from Eachen as these light switches do not need a neutral, however a capacitor which is supplied needs to be connected at the light. I also installed single Sonoff Wi-Fi switches to my garage door, gate motor, electric fence, irrigation, lounge light, side light and xbox one. I still need to connect 2 x 4 gang light switches my lounge and dinning room lights however I cannot find 4 gang switches that do not use a neutral so I will have to wait for them to become available. These switches are all compatible with Google Home so they all can be voice activated and from the Google Home and eWeLink app. These devices can also be controlled from anywhere in the world where there is a Wi-Fi connection available. I no longer have get up or get out of bed to switch the lights on or off. There are however some drawbacks. If there is no Wi-Fi (load shedding) for the switches you will have to switch them on manually if they are connected in series.This can be overcome buy purchasing remote control devices that work from a hub, that still work even when Wi-fi is not available. I am sure it also affects the Wi-Fi as the devices are permanently connected to Wi-Fi. I also see a difference when downloading Xbox which is also connected to Wi-Fi (downloading is erratic). I will change this to a lan cable. If you are purchasing smart Wi-Fi lights be sure to check if they are bright enough and the colour (warm or cool white) . Some can do both. Switches need to be in Wi-Fi range and I had to install some externally (electric fence and garage door) as the housings blocked the Wi-Fi signal. At least I now have something that listens to me and does what I want when I want. It is just unfortunate I can't automate my wife to do what I want when I want without any backchat. HAHA
  13. After adding a 100L pressure tank to my system I still found that my booster pump was switching on far too often. The system had a 24L pressure tank originally. To check the problem I checked how much water was stored in the pressure tanks after filling at my meter reading of 4bar (400kpa). Air pressure was charged at 2.4bar in both pressure tanks. I found it stored only about 20L till the water pressure reached 2bar. I should have been about 50L as I have 100L+ 24L pressure tank capacity. I concluded that there had to be something wrong with the pressure reading. I replaced the pressure sensor on the pump and found that I had about a 1bar fault on the old pressure sensor. After setting up with the new pressure sensor the system now works correctly. The sensor is a mechanical dial which is tied to coil which expands with pressure. To conclude it would be a good idea to replace the pressure sensor on a pump every 2 years as it seems as the calibration goes out after time.
  14. No you do not need another inverter to make use of the battery power with the infinisolar plus 5k unit for power failures. It is grid tied unit with solar and battery backup with a 5Kw output. That diagram shown to me is confusing. Why would you not use the infinisolar for load.
  15. You can also utilize your pv power when you load exceeds your inverter capacity when mains is used with a grid tied inverter. You need to switch off or isolate the inverter output and allow the inverter to feed back to mains power while using mains power by bypassing the inverter output if you are wired appropriately and if you are allowed to feed back to mains.
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