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New and confused. Need some help with smaller/cheaper setup.


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Hi all,

Looking for some much needed guidance as I'm still trying to figure everything out and it's making my head spin a bit. Don't have the bank to go quite as big as a lot of folks but just looking for something decent that could cover the 2.5hrs slots. Around the 12-15k mark max. Also, I'm renting so solar not really an option. So far from the reading I've done it seems I should get a Pure Sine Wave if possible? All I'm really looking to run is: A 65' TV, Wifi Router, 1 Desktop PC and perhaps a fan and phone charger. With that in mind I have quite a few questions:

- 1kva vs 3kva - Is 3kva overkill or better to go big as possible on inverter itself? Or is 1kva sufficient for what I'm looking to use it for? If you had the choice between a 1kva with two lithium batteries or a 3kva with two gel/acid batteries, what would you prefer?

- Is the site 'Geewiz' reputable? Seems like they have a few good options and trolley combos but I know there are a lot of dodgy sites out there currently.

- Is a 'simulated/modified sine wave' really significantly worse than a 'pure sine wave'? There is a neatly priced Mecer 2400VA 24V Inverter With 2x Gel Batteries Kit (R9900) but would that be falling into a trap somehow?

- Are the Ecoflow ranges worth it? Seems like less power for a bigger price tag. Not sure why people are going for that except for maybe portability. 

- Of the inverters that seem decent it's mostly between: Mecer, Axpert, RCT Megapower, Kool Energy and Ellies. Any of those I should avoid or any that is a clear favourite perhaps?

And then finally - the inverter combo that looks the best to my naïve eye is the Axpert Type Pure Sine 3000VA Inverter Trolley + 2x 100Ah Battery (8 HOUR BATTERY LIFE) KIT - 3000W (50A PWM SOLAR) (150-200 cycles) for R12,895.

Does anyone have experience with that particular inverter? There is also a 3000VA Mecer Axpert Pure Sine Inverter + 2x 100Ah Battery Trolley (8 HOUR BATTERY LIFE) KIT - 3000W (150-200 cycles) for R14,295. Would that be better somehow?

Apologies for the slew of questions but that covers most of what I'm curious about now as I'm looking to just bring some relieve to this hellscape that is loadshedding.

Any help would be very much appreciated! 

 

 

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9 hours ago, MrMeeseeks86 said:

All I'm really looking to run is: A 65' TV, Wifi Router, 1 Desktop PC and perhaps a fan and phone charger.

Is that all? No decoder, no stick in the TV? Make sure you identify everything you want backed up. All those devices will have a plate on them showing how much power they draw. Add those up.

We are trying to establish how much backup power you need. 

A useful guide can be found at

https://www.maidenelectronics.co.za/Technical-FAQ-Help

Do that exercise first, then start thinking of specific models. 

Ecoflow has lithium batteries, which will last longer and can be discharged deeper, but I agree that they are pricey. They are being heavily advertised on social media. They are pure sine wave, which costs more. 

I've dealt with Geewiz. The only complaint I have is that they consistently delivered a day early! 

I will leave it to the more technically savvy members to address the pure/modified sine wave issue. I think this depends on what type of devices you want to back up. 

Most of the units you are considering have fans that will run when the system is under load. Some people find these tolerable, some find them unacceptable. So check that in the specification. 

Try and get an idea of recharge times. Loadshedding levels are going up again, and the higher the stage, the less time there is to recharge. The Ecoflows are wanting a bit here, even though they have lithium batteries which can be charged quicker. 

Lithium batteries will cost more, but will give greater effective backup because you can discharge them more deeply, and generally they will have a longer life.

If you're in Jhb, give Maiden Electronics a shout. They have a lot of experience with the type of system you are contemplating, and they give good service. 

The batteries will be heavy. Be prepared for that. 

Edited by Bobster.
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1 hour ago, Bobster. said:

I've dealt with Geewiz. The only complaint I have is that they consistently delivered a day early! 

Totally agree with that(-: I've placed probably ten or more orders with them and once when something was wrong, it was rectified overnight with no request to return the incorrect power supply.

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40 minutes ago, Peter V said:

Totally agree with that(-: I've placed probably ten or more orders with them and once when something was wrong, it was rectified overnight with no request to return the incorrect power supply.

Also, when you get stuff made for other markets, where the wall plugs aren't quite the same as ours, they include an adapter in the shipment. A nice little detail that reduces your blood pressure and the amount of rude words you need to utter.

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On 2022/12/29 at 6:54 AM, Bobster. said:

Is that all? No decoder, no stick in the TV? Make sure you identify everything you want backed up. All those devices will have a plate on them showing how much power they draw. Add those up.

We are trying to establish how much backup power you need. 

A useful guide can be found at

https://www.maidenelectronics.co.za/Technical-FAQ-Help

Do that exercise first, then start thinking of specific models. 

Ecoflow has lithium batteries, which will last longer and can be discharged deeper, but I agree that they are pricey. They are being heavily advertised on social media. They are pure sine wave, which costs more. 

I've dealt with Geewiz. The only complaint I have is that they consistently delivered a day early! 

I will leave it to the more technically savvy members to address the pure/modified sine wave issue. I think this depends on what type of devices you want to back up. 

Most of the units you are considering have fans that will run when the system is under load. Some people find these tolerable, some find them unacceptable. So check that in the specification. 

Try and get an idea of recharge times. Loadshedding levels are going up again, and the higher the stage, the less time there is to recharge. The Ecoflows are wanting a bit here, even though they have lithium batteries which can be charged quicker. 

Lithium batteries will cost more, but will give greater effective backup because you can discharge them more deeply, and generally they will have a longer life.

If you're in Jhb, give Maiden Electronics a shout. They have a lot of experience with the type of system you are contemplating, and they give good service. 

The batteries will be heavy. Be prepared for that. 

Thanks for the response! Yeah that's all really, might factor in for a sound system too, although doubt I'd really use it, and I have IPTV so no decoder or stick. Lights are those rechargeable bulbs so also not necessary for lights. 

Found the figuring out the draw power a bit tricky for instance my TV says 265W on the back but that's apparently max output and according to the Internet this specific model averages about 120W. Will also be turning down back-light for loadshedding slots since that apparently makes a big difference in how much it draws. 

And sorry just to make sure, I thought the Ecoflow charges a lot quicker but you say the recharge times are a bit wanting? 

So would 1kva be more suited for me then? Or would 3kva be better even though it is with 2 lead acid batteries which can later be swapped with lithium? 

Appreciate the help! 

 

 

 

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20 minutes ago, MrMeeseeks86 said:

And sorry just to make sure, I thought the Ecoflow charges a lot quicker but you say the recharge times are a bit wanting? 

My error! I just looked at their spec sheet, and they say that the DELTA model (1.2kw) can be recharged from grid in 1.6 hours. So not so shabby, and certainly you can recharge between load sheds.

But they also say that the battery life is 800 cycles - which isn't so hot.

I'd also have questions about where new batteries can be bought for an ecoflow, especially given that they are effectively declaring a 2 year battery life. 

As regards your TV - work on 265W. With all appliances if they gave a range of power consumed, take the highest. If that's what they use, you're covered. If they use less then you have a safety net.
 

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I would rather go for the 1kw with 2 x lithiums from the start. Yes the 3KVA with Gel can be upgraded later to lithium but don't expect even with your lower load for the Gels to last longer than 12-18 months. I try not to use more than the 60% capacity of the inverter as not to work components very hard. 

The Ecoflow are great units but if you look at the Ecoflow River at R14 000 it only has 576wh capacity. This on a desktop at 200W and your TV at 265W you will not be able to even use them for 1.5hrs. They are great for use when camping where weight and space is at a premium. 

Also most are not made for charging 24/7 in order to use them as a UPS. Good point to make very sure of the load that will be used during the LS and decide on the actual storage required. Observe the 50% rule when using lead acid batteries. This means 600Wh per 12V 100Ah battery for discharge per LS cycle. Also lead acid will not recharge to 100% capacity before the next LS event. Lithium on the other hand might well but depends on the charging power. 

24V always better than 12V due to lower amps being provided by the 2 batteries in series. 

I would not go for a modified sine. The pure sine you can always use in case it is needed for a fridge during a power failure as opposed to just a LS cycle when it is not needed to keep on. We never know when the power cannot be restored after LS due to equipment failures. We will be seeing a lot about this as equipment is not designed for the current regular daily switching. 

Just my 2c.

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