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Everything posted by ChristoSnake

  1. I guess so? All I really know from the above is that my roof is way too flat for optimal winter insolation
  2. I hope this is what you're after...
  3. Welcome to the forum, Jakes! Chat to our colleague Thomas v S. He lives in your neck of the woods, runs multiple inverters and did the install himself. You may find a lot of common ground...
  4. I would definitely buy an 8kW over a 5kW if they cost the same - no question about it. Running a pool pump & washing machine simultaneously during the day means you may have to turn one of them off if you want to boil a kettle...
  5. Aah, nice to seen another Infini owner here! Which ones do you have?
  6. Peter, here are some steps to help you pinpoint the problem... 1. Make sure the service is in fact running by executing this commend on the Pi: service netatalk status
  7. They were the same until early last year. If the version from Centurionsolar is still at v2.8.5., it has not been updated since then. The version from iccsoftware is under active development and receives regular updates & bug fixes. Manie recently added support for parallel inverters, for instance...
  8. The CenturionSolar version of ICC is not being updated any more, unless I'm mistaken... Updating the OS improves stability, automating restarts removes annoyance PS: A failing SD card that caused mine to hang intermittently at one stage. If ICC's database is trying to save data to a bad area, the results will be unpredictable.
  9. I update my Raspberry Pi's operating system once a month and also reboot it every couple of days - these two steps ensures that ICC never gives any hassles. Step 1: Updating the RPi is done by executing the following two commands in a console (without the bullets!). Type "Y" or "yes" as required: sudo apt update sudo apt full-upgrade You may (optionally) execute this after the update to clean the software repository & save space: sudo apt autoremove Reboot the RPi to load updated kernel (if any). Step 2: To automate a regular reboot, execute this comman
  10. Sadly the geyser is still "dumb"... I use a Geyserwise megafter that will only allow it so turn on between 12:30 - 14:00 if the water does not exceed 62 Deg C. By that time the batteries are normally fully charged again, and even if they aren't there's enough sun to allow them to continue charging despite the 2kW diverted to the geyser. I might do something with Tasmota & Nodered at some stage, but at present it works well for me. BTW: I find it easy to drain my 5x Pylontechs from 100% down to about 40% during a normal winter's night. I have a video projector & AV system that
  11. Nice setup, but you forgot to install the last row of 4 panels on the right-hand side of your roof I have nearly as many panels as you have, and in summer my batteries usually recharge before noon. After that I use the spare energy to boost the water temps in the geyser. And later in the day the famous Pretoria summer thunderstorms make sure that there's no more generation to be had! In winter the batteries take a tad much longer to recharge, but at least we are blessed with cloudless weather so it does not really matter...
  12. I thought about it at some stage, but seeing how well they hide the relevant documentation I came to the conclusion that they do not want anybody doing this
  13. There's some good info on Lithium battery degradation available at https://batterytestcentre.com.au. Here's their Pylontech US2000 testing over the past 3 years:
  14. Cloud access and Android client!
  15. Guss, I've completed my Tasmota, OpenWeatherMap & NodeRED bits and will tackle OpenHAB in the next week or two. I have a colleague who's also starting out with an OpenHAB install, but he's not really active on the forum...
  16. That's a brand new version of ICC. I'd suggest contacting Manie at [email protected] for advice...
  17. Yep, running a normal (i.e. non-solar) geyser's element or an oven requires some care. Both of these can run at 3kW or more, leaving little capacity to spare. We have a solar geyser with a 2kW element (only runs during the day if required courtesy of a Geyserwise switch), and generally only use the oven during the day (so that the sun pays). I found that our hob (at 500-800 W per plate) is not an issue at all, unless you turn all 4 plates to their maximum setting simultaneously. Luckily we don't cook that way
  18. Indeed, pool motor and borehole pump only runs only during the day, and we only use the oven during the day over weekends for roasts, etc. Batteries are only charged via solar and we run everything off them at night. Eskom is there as backup for very cloudy weather that lasts longer than a day. We've used less than 500 kWh of grid electricity this year:
  19. I also run my whole house off a single 5kW inverter: Borehole pump Swimming pool motor Oven & hob Geyser element Kettle Wall plugs Lights Panel heaters etc. Some of them are very high draw items (I'm looking at you, you 3kW oven!) and you may need to ensure that you do not run them at the same time as other high draw items (kettle or geyser element). It also pays to spread the load... Our home's base load is around 500 W (3x fridges/freezers, extensive alarm system, three desktop computers, fish tank, etc). Every morning at 0
  20. I presume it is still best practice to earth your panels, even with a low frequency inverter where there may not be AC present on the PV side? I can just see how an insurer would jump at that to refuse a lightning-related claim...
  21. Hold your horses, sir! There are some forumites who will be mighty upset when Victron is mentioned in the same sentence as Infinisolar But it does explain why it handles spikes like this (me doing some old-school arc welding) without any apparent problems...
  22. I did this before going the full PV/inverter route, and left it in place as a backup. My system is powered by a sealed alarm battery that is permanently charged with an adjustable power supply set to 13.6V. I used caravan lights in the bedrooms and trimmed LED strips to suitable length & mounted them against the living rooms & bathrooms ceilings. These battery operated wireless switches use an inline relay (powered by the same 12V feed) to turn them on & off. I mounted the backup system's switches next to 220V light switches. There's plenty of light available, and b
  23. Shane, I own a Plus 5K but do not know the VII model. A quick bit of Googling suggests that some of the differences are: Plus 5K has 2x 5kW MPPT controllers (10kW total), VII has a single 5kW. Having double the PV means you have a better chance of remaining off-grid when it's overcast. Plus 5K has 900V MPPT controllers, the VII has a 450V MPPT. Higher voltages mean that you can build longer PV strings and potentially use thinner cabling (higher voltage means less current to generate the same 5kW PV input). It also means you need to take more care with safety measures. Bat
  24. Not sure about the question ether. RikH and I have the same inverters, and here's my take on it... The two MPPTs on the inverter are rated at 5kW & 900V each for a total of 10kW. I have two 4kW series strings (about 500V) so I presume they are fine. The inverter itself can deliver 5kW at 220V and another 5kW at 48V, thereby fully utilising the 10kW of PV input. I've heard that it's OK to exceed the maximum PV wattage rating as long as you remain within the maximum voltage limit, but I am not that guy. In grid-tied mode it can blend utility power if the load exceeds 5kW, but i
  25. I guess it all depends on your personal needs? The Geyserwise provides many things that most timers don't. It offers a temperature probe, multiple timers, separate settings for for weekdays & weekends, separate water target temps for midnight -> 6 am, 6am -> noon, noon -> 6 pm and 6 pm to midnight, element boil dry protection, holiday mode, real-time water temp readout, etc. Simply put - it was designed to manage water heating systems! But in my case it does not integrate easily into my home automation system. I'd like a device that does all of the above, but also al
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