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SlimmJimm

Looking for a 5kva system fully installed

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Hi guys, complete newcomer here, i am looking to install a 5kva battery backup system with 400ah of battery power due to loadshedding being a pain in the backside.

 

I will need to run some lights, 3 bedroom apartment as well as the usual tv, home theatre, ps4 and the fridge.

I have a gas water heater as well a gas stove.

 

Based in Midrand and hoping you guys know some suppliers that won't charge an arm and a leg?

 

Thanks

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Morning guys,

Apologies for being a newcomer and the first post being a 1 liner🤣.

Like everybody else in SA I'm trying to find a good solution to avoid loadshedding which we all expect is going to last a few more years.

I stay in a 3 bedroom ground floor apartment which is quite eco-friendly already (Gas water heater, gas stove although the oven is still electrical) and have procured energy efficient appliances.

Currently running at home is the following which I would like to power:

Kenwood Home Theatre 220w - rarely going to use but would like to (lights would be switched off)
Subwoofer 100w - rarely going to use but would like to (lights would be switched off)
WiFi Router - unsure of wattage
LG TV - 205w
DStv - model 6s no idea of power consumption - assume 50w?
PS4 - 110w - hardly would use
Fridge I think 350w will be safe? model LG J247sluv
12 Lights in the apartment - usually about 4 max would be on simultaneously (I think 15w fluorescent bulbs)
Laptop and monitor - not sure on wattage

Dont think I would use the dishwasher, washing machine or microwave during load shedding


I have been going thru various posts yesterday and many people say if they had to do it over again they would just purchase a Victron Inverter from the onset, my budget is not that big - Max R50k and I would like to procure the best system without exceeding that cost.

I was looking at a Victron 48/3000 inverter due to peoples recommendation and if I do need to upgrade - I think the market is quite good for these units so that wouldnt be an issue as well.

I just want to hear you guys thoughts on this and would a 3kva system be sufficient for my needs or should I go for another brand but 5kva which would probably cost a bit less?

 

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The 3kVA Multiplus-II will be perfect for your use case, and you should be able to swing it on 50k. The inverter is around 17k-18k, and you would need at least one good battery (Pylontech recommended), around 21k for a US3000 module. That leaves you another 10k for the inevitable accessories you'd need (such as something to mount it all into).

But first things first: measure how much power your applications really use. Just because it says 200W on the back doesn't mean that is how much it actually uses. Invest in one of those cheapie plug-in power meters (such as this one), so you get a better idea of what the power use will be on average. Then multiply that value by the number of hours that you need backup for. For example, if you find that you have an average consumption of 500W, then over 4 hours that would need 4 * 500 = 2000Wh = 2kWh, which means a 4-hour load-shedding slots sends the US3000 module I mentioned to about 70% DoD (30% remaining).

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6 minutes ago, plonkster said:

The 3kVA Multiplus-II will be perfect for your use case, and you should be able to swing it on 50k. The inverter is around 17k-18k, and you would need at least one good battery (Pylontech recommended), around 21k for a US3000 module. That leaves you another 10k for the inevitable accessories you'd need (such as something to mount it all into).

But first things first: measure how much power your applications really use. Just because it says 200W on the back doesn't mean that is how much it actually uses. Invest in one of those cheapie plug-in power meters (such as this one), so you get a better idea of what the power use will be on average. Then multiply that value by the number of hours that you need backup for. For example, if you find that you have an average consumption of 500W, then over 4 hours that would need 4 * 500 = 2000Wh = 2kWh, which means a 4-hour load-shedding slots sends the US3000 module I mentioned to about 70% DoD (30% remaining).

Thanks @plonkster for the feedback - I am going to see if the guy doing the installation doesn't have one of those power meters laying around for me to use, installer also advised me to go with the US3000 and said I can even add on a US2000 later on once budget allows for better power supply going forward.

Lets say I would rather go for 2x US2000 at +-R15kea and a 5kva inverter - what inverter would you recommend? I was looking at the Growatt but have read up and seems that owners have endless communication issues which is not something I would want to manage.

 

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@SlimmJimm,

The new Sunsync 5kva inverters are quite nice and are on the NRS approved list. Can be paralleled for future expansion and the prices are good.

They are currently out of stock, but is expected any day now.

2 x 2.4kw pylontechs will do the thing!

Hope this helps

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54 minutes ago, Chris-R said:

@SlimmJimm,

The new Sunsync 5kva inverters are quite nice and are on the NRS approved list. Can be paralleled for future expansion and the prices are good.

They are currently out of stock, but is expected any day now.

2 x 2.4kw pylontechs will do the thing!

Hope this helps

Thanks @Chris-R for the feedback, I have read that you could possibly have warranty issues using only 2x 2.4kw batteries with a 5kva inverter due to the max load even though you could limit this on the inverter settings itself I assume? and that atleast 9.6kwh would be required to adequately run the 5kva system which for me would be too expensive and a bit of overkill for my needs.

If you were in my position would you rather go with a 3kva setup or fork out a bit more and go 5kva albeit with the 2x 2.4kw pylons?

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I would recommend you look at a 3000VA Multiplus II as well. There is even an secondhand one available for R15k in the classified section that might be worth it you can make an offer on.

I have that 3k Multi II in my house with a 4kW battery and it runs the hole house (except oven/stove/geyser naturally ). The inverter has not tripped and the battery last more than 6 hours. 
(That is about 300W worth of LED lights, fridge, 2x freezers, lost of computers and monitors, 3x wifi/3G routers, coffee machine, TV, Amp, Wii, etc.)

The reason I went with the Multiplus is simple: 
I could install it myself as it is very forgiving (i.e. it has plenty protection if I did do something stupid) with plenty of great documentation. 
I can easily upgrade it in future (modular).
And it just works.

Yesterday during our 2h loadshedding I had the heatpump on as well. It drained the batteries (along with the normal rest above) to about 50% in the 2h

image.png.edc731b04adf776c85bd917ba30061d5.png

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6 minutes ago, Louisvdw said:

I would recommend you look at a 3000VA Multiplus II as well. There is even an secondhand one available for R15k in the classified section that might be worth it you can make an offer on.

I have that 3k Multi II in my house with a 4kW battery and it runs the hole house (except oven/stove/geyser naturally ). The inverter has not tripped and the battery last more than 6 hours. 
(That is about 300W worth of LED lights, fridge, 2x freezers, lost of computers and monitors, 3x wifi/3G routers, coffee machine, TV, Amp, Wii, etc.)

The reason I went with the Multiplus is simple: 
I could install it myself as it is very forgiving (i.e. it has plenty protection if I did do something stupid) with plenty of great documentation. 
I can easily upgrade it in future (modular).
And it just works.

Yesterday during our 2h loadshedding I had the heatpump on as well. It drained the batteries (along with the normal rest above) to about 50% in the 2h

 

Thanks @Louisvdw just a quick one, what is the difference between the multiplus II and the multiplus II with the GX?

I would like to have some IoT functionality as I've got many smart appliances and would also like to monitor the status of the batteries etc etc remotely.

Does the Multiplus II have this functionality out of the box or would I need to purchase the GX colour screen (or usb wifi dongle etc) to make use of it? the Victron website is a bit vague or maybe im just too new at all of this and dont really understand everything lol 😅🤪

 

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52 minutes ago, SlimmJimm said:

Thanks @Chris-R for the feedback, I have read that you could possibly have warranty issues using only 2x 2.4kw batteries with a 5kva inverter due to the max load even though you could limit this on the inverter settings itself I assume? and that atleast 9.6kwh would be required to adequately run the 5kva system which for me would be too expensive and a bit of overkill for my needs.

If you were in my position would you rather go with a 3kva setup or fork out a bit more and go 5kva albeit with the 2x 2.4kw pylons?

The setting should be set correctly on the inverter as to allow for max. amp output. The Pylontech battery warranty is not in any way linked to the amount of batteries, but to the max current drawn at any given time, of which data they have available in the BMS of each battery.

Keeping in mind in what state our economy is at the moment, and given the fact that we are borrowing trillions again, I cannot see that Escom will be able to upkeep all the maintenance on all their old plants and keep everything going for much longer. ... I doubt ?? I can foresee that either we are going to get load shedding on a permanent basis or the tariffs are going to get sky high. This will mean that we will have to start looking after ourselves, and not wait for something to happen, which is never going to happen !!!

My suggestion would be to go for the bigger inverter and add on batteries in time to come.

I am totally off the grid, took my 3 years though, but man ....does it feel grate to carry on normally, when everybody else is in the DARK !!

 

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Posted (edited)

The GX version of the Multi has a built in CCGX device. For the normal one you can add it if you want it.
https://www.victronenergy.com/live/venus-os:start 

The GX devices can control many of the victron devices and publish stats to the VRM cloud (where my graph came from). They have a version of the VenusOS that runs on a RaspberryPi as well.
The GX devices has a relay and different data inputs (VE.Direct, VE.Bus, VE.Can etc.) and if your IoT will interface with those you can use it. It does seem that most will use a seperate NodeRed rPi for the IOT stuff. 

 

Oh PS: My Multi II 3k, batteries, MPPT, cables, breakers, etc came in just about R50k which include 4x 335W panels

Edited by Louisvdw

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17 minutes ago, SlimmJimm said:

Thanks @Louisvdw just a quick one, what is the difference between the multiplus II and the multiplus II with the GX?

I would like to have some IoT functionality as I've got many smart appliances and would also like to monitor the status of the batteries etc etc remotely.

Does the Multiplus II have this functionality out of the box or would I need to purchase the GX colour screen (or usb wifi dongle etc) to make use of it? the Victron website is a bit vague or maybe im just too new at all of this and dont really understand everything lol 😅🤪

 

Sunsync is out of the box supplied with an app and Wi-Fi dongle. Monitoring as easy as pie!

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1 minute ago, Chris-R said:

Monitoring as easy as pie!

Monitor is not the same as hooking up IoT. The GX version of the Multi is that same. Just hook up and go.

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4 hours ago, SlimmJimm said:

Thanks @Louisvdw just a quick one, what is the difference between the multiplus II and the multiplus II with the GX?

I would like to have some IoT functionality as I've got many smart appliances and would also like to monitor the status of the batteries etc etc remotely.

Does the Multiplus II have this functionality out of the box or would I need to purchase the GX colour screen (or usb wifi dongle etc) to make use of it? the Victron website is a bit vague or maybe im just too new at all of this and dont really understand everything lol 😅🤪

 

Go Blue, you won't regret it.

The MultiPlus II GX has a built in GX device, the regular MultiPlus II does not. I'd price both and see which one works out cheaper, as well as what add-ons you're looking at. If you're wanting to expand the system later with other Victron goodies that'll require more VE ports.

There's a nice comparison of what the GX range breaks down into on Victron's site > https://www.victronenergy.com/live/venus-os:start

I have the Venus GX and there's more data available than you'd ever need. It's automatically uploaded to VRM, your dashboard for everything, or you can host it yourself with InfluxDB and Grafana. Victron has built-in MQQT, so the world's your oyster there.

 

The colour controller is great, depends on how much use you're getting out of it. Because my system is tucked away in the back room the screen would be a waste - I just browse the interface from my laptop/phone.

 

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On 2020/07/13 at 1:08 PM, SlimmJimm said:

Hi guys, complete newcomer here, i am looking to install a 5kva battery backup system with 400ah of battery power due to loadshedding being a pain in the backside.

 

I will need to run some lights, 3 bedroom apartment as well as the usual tv, home theatre, ps4 and the fridge.

I have a gas water heater as well a gas stove.

 

Based in Midrand and hoping you guys know some suppliers that won't charge an arm and a leg?

 

Thanks

Views or Valley?

Go with the  MultiPlus II GX 48/3000/35-32, it might be a little more expensive than buying the non GX + Venus version but it makes for a neater/simpler installation. I would go Blue for many reasons including their excellent hardware and software offerings, massive community, constant firmware improvements, great support locally etc etc. etc. 

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2 hours ago, VisN said:

Views or Valley?

Go with the  MultiPlus II GX 48/3000/35-32, it might be a little more expensive than buying the non GX + Venus version but it makes for a neater/simpler installation. I would go Blue for many reasons including their excellent hardware and software offerings, massive community, constant firmware improvements, great support locally etc etc. etc. 

Valley lol...... How did you know?

Ok do you know of any installers in the area? I just want to start of with a few quotes first and then see what works out best

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13 minutes ago, SlimmJimm said:

Valley lol...... How did you know?

Ek's 'n SlimmerJimm.

15 minutes ago, SlimmJimm said:

Ok do you know of any installers in the area? I just want to start of with a few quotes first and then see what works out best

I had no luck with anyone in the area. Speak to @Jaco de Jongh, he did my installation and I cannot recommend him enough. 

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Hi @VisN @iops @louisjvdw @plonkster, so I've sort of decided to spend a bit more and go blue as they say.......

I have read up on VisN's Thread Here and just would like to clarify the below:

If i go with a MultiplusII 48/3000 GX model - would I still need:

The Venus GX
And/or the Victron MPPT in the event I want to install solar panels (I assume I would need it for both - just to confirm 😅)
MK3USB interface device for setup etc or is this not required when going with the GX models?

Ive gotten a quote for R21505 for the multiplusII 48/3000 plus the colour control GX built in which I assume I would still need a USB wifi which can pick up for around R150.

given the 2 options above - would you rather go with the GX model Inverter (R22585) or non-gx and get the colour control (would I still need the Venus GX if i have the colour control or is it the same thing just with a screen?)

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Posted (edited)
39 minutes ago, SlimmJimm said:

If i go with a MultiplusII 48/3000 GX model - would I still need:

The Venus GX

No. The GX models have the control board built in, and a neat little LCD panel on the front that displays some basic info.

39 minutes ago, SlimmJimm said:

And/or the Victron MPPT in the event I want to install solar panels (I assume I would need it for both - just to confirm 😅)

The EasySolar-II GX has both the GX control-board and an MPPT built in. The Multiplus-II GX has only the control board, and you'd need an external MPPT (but you can plug it into the board inside the inverter, there are two VE.Direct ports on it that you can use).

39 minutes ago, SlimmJimm said:

MK3USB interface device for setup etc or is this not required when going with the GX models?

The MK3-USB is only really required for firmware updates. Configuration can be done via any GX device (CCGX, Venus-GX, Cerbo-GX, the built-in board, all of them) by using VRM two-way communication and the remote ve.configure feature on the VRM website.

You can do firmware updates directly from the GX device BUT it requires some skills. If you know your way around a Linux/Unix system, you should be okay. Otherwise, either ask someone to do it for you, or buy/borrow the mk3.

For normal day-to-day operation you don't need the mk3.

39 minutes ago, SlimmJimm said:

Ive gotten a quote for R21505 for the multiplusII 48/3000 plus the colour control GX built in which I assume I would still need a USB wifi which can pick up for around R150.

I really have a bit of an issue with suppliers that still ship the CCGX, even when the customer clearly doesn't need it AND asks for Wi-Fi. It's the oldest and the most expensive of the control units. If you don't need the LCD screen, then buy a cheaper GX unit. The Venus-GX and the Cerbo-GX are both cheaper, and both of them have built-in Wi-Fi.

39 minutes ago, SlimmJimm said:

given the 2 options above - would you rather go with the GX model Inverter (R22585) or non-gx and get the colour control (would I still need the Venus GX if i have the colour control or is it the same thing just with a screen?)

I'd go with the GX model. It has much more CPU power on its control board than the much older CCGX (quad core ARM A7 at 1.2Ghz vs a much older single-core ARM A8 at 600Mhz).

Edited by plonkster

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Thanks @plonkster

Just to confirm, i should rather go with the Multiplus II GX (if available) as opposed to the normal Multiplus II + VenusGX or CerboGX

Does the Multiplus II + VenusGX has more usable ports and be better in the longer run or not compared to using just a Multiplus II GX?

I am definitely going to install panels later in the year (waiting on body corp approval).

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The separate Venus will have more ports, but you should be able to do everything with the builtin GX that you need.

 

The Multi GX also have 2 Ve.Bus ports not show in this picture. So the big difference I see are the 2 extra relays (the multi has one) and 1x Ve.Direct vs 2x in the Venus.

image.png.64507d44e176513cce6eec817ff81e20.png

image.png.4dad03b301a538e4ef031035b9bdb416.png

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, SlimmJimm said:

Just to confirm, i should rather go with the Multiplus II GX (if available) as opposed to the normal Multiplus II + VenusGX or CerboGX

Oh that's a bit more difficult to answer. The Cerbo has a lot of really nice ports for doing all sort of things, but unless you have a boat or water tanks or things you want/need to measure, the GX model inverter with the built-in board is going to suffice. And it is still the fastest (it is faster than the Venus-GX, which is based on a Beaglebone black, and it is even a tad faster than the Cerbo, although the Cerbo is actually plenty fast). You can make this decision on cost: If an external GX works out cheaper, by all means go for that.

1 hour ago, Louisvdw said:

2 Ve.Bus ports

All the GX models have two... but it's really only two physical plugs. It's basically RS485, so it's just one bus. The two plugs are to make it easy to daisy-chain in larger setups. On a single-phase single-inverter install, you'll only use one anyway. It is useful to have that second one around, cause you can plug the mk3-usb in there... (just not for firmware updates, for firmware updates you must disconnect the GX).

Edited by plonkster

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Thanks @plonkster and @Louisvdw

 

Going to try and source a 48/3000 GX model - I heard they are kind of scarce these days price wise I think they are a bit more expensive but would look neater at the end of the day and has a faster processor.

 

 

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