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Opposite panels in one string?


Gandalf

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I visited a site today to investigate why the lady wasn’t getting the expected solar output. I found that the original installer had wired 4 x panels facing northeast and 4 x panels facing southwest in ONE string! That’s 8 panels in one string, half facing one direction, half facing the opposite direction. 😳

I suppose at high noon there would be a peak in production, but how could this work at any other time? Strangely enough, this is not the first time I have encountered this strange phenomenon. 
 

Am I being overly petty, or does anyone agree that this is just wrong? 

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1 hour ago, Gandalf said:

I visited a site today to investigate why the lady wasn’t getting the expected solar output. I found that the original installer had wired 4 x panels facing northeast and 4 x panels facing southwest in ONE string! That’s 8 panels in one string, half facing one direction, half facing the opposite direction. 😳

I suppose at high noon there would be a peak in production, but how could this work at any other time? Strangely enough, this is not the first time I have encountered this strange phenomenon. 
 

Am I being overly petty, or does anyone agree that this is just wrong? 

Doesn't sound like a correctly laid-out installation. Best is probably just to work out the best configuration and fix it and have a happy customer.  Petty would be to badmouth the other installer.

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38 minutes ago, GreenFields said:

Doesn't sound like a correctly laid-out installation. Best is probably just to work out the best configuration and fix it and have a happy customer.  Petty would be to badmouth the other installer.

Agree with this. 

If one knew what inverter is used one can give a better input. 

Also which directions is there any space for panels. 

Some apartments in complexes do at times have limited usable space. This is where lower voltage inverters could find a place with parallel strings. 

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4 hours ago, Gandalf said:

I visited a site today to investigate why the lady wasn’t getting the expected solar output. I found that the original installer had wired 4 x panels facing northeast and 4 x panels facing southwest in ONE string! That’s 8 panels in one string, half facing one direction, half facing the opposite direction. 😳

I suppose at high noon there would be a peak in production, but how could this work at any other time? Strangely enough, this is not the first time I have encountered this strange phenomenon. 
 

Am I being overly petty, or does anyone agree that this is just wrong? 

 

4 hours ago, Gandalf said:

4 x panels facing southwest

The above direction would work but not at optimal output.

So in the morning, the North east array will generate most power while south west is supplying less, so yes it will be the average of the two but that's because one is getting good sun while the other isn't. It would also be the average of the two if they were each on separate charge controllers/MPPTs.

In the middle of the day they will both be contributing roughly equally, then in the afternoon the west array will generate most.

It's a really nice way to layout arrays, as it flattens out and widens the production curve across the day, reducing the peak in the middle of the day. This can be advantageous, especially if the potential peak output from a single orientation array is higher than your system can productively use.

 

Edited by TaliaB
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3 hours ago, Gandalf said:

I visited a site today to investigate why the lady wasn’t getting the expected solar output

Remember we are nearing winter solstice so solar array will produce less output, that is in the southern hemisphere. What is the solar panel specs,tilt and geographic location?

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17 hours ago, GreenFields said:

Doesn't sound like a correctly laid-out installation. Best is probably just to work out the best configuration and fix it and have a happy customer.  Petty would be to badmouth the other installer.

One thing I never do is badmouth any other installer. 
I would rather say something like. 
“I would prefer to to try something different” or “I would usually do it this way, could we try it and see if there is an improvement?” 
 

I have now changed the panels from the 8S 1P to a 4S2P configuration. I will check in with her on Friday to see if there is any improvement. 

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