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Good evening all,

I'm new to the crazy world that is solar. I'm looking at getting my first system installed and my word, there is a [email protected] load to learn.

- I stay on the south coast in the EC

- I have an asbestos roof that faces approximately NW and SE. It is a very low pitch, I would guess below 20. The old building plans I found don't indicate what it is.

- I have a large rear garden where I could build a NE facing structure (that could double as an entertainment area). The wall is 8.8m across and there is about 18m of grass to the shed. I can't go too close to the shed because the neighbors have a huge tree there that would block the low winter sun. 

- we use about 26 units a day

- 0.75kw pool pump running 10 hours a day

- 150L kwikot geyser is outside and on a Geyserwise. Running 6am - 9am and 6pm - 8pm and set to 60 C.

- 0.75kw DAB water pump pushing water form tanks into the house.

- home office running about 200W 14 hours a day.

- lots of LED lights. a gate motor, security alarm, etc.

After checking what some friends have installed (all have Goodwe), and how they using their systems, I'm leaning towards:

- 12 x JA Solar 455W Mono MBB Percium Half-Cell Silver Frame MC4

- 2 or 3 x Pylontech US3000C 3.5kWh 

- Sunsynk 5kW Hybrid Inverter

I'll split the house on essential and non essential circuits. Essential would be home office, all lights, fridge, alarm, gate motor, water pump that get used day and night. Non essential would be all plugs, geyser, pool, oven, stove, dishwasher, washing machine, etc. I hoping that there is excess solar, then it can be used on the non essential circuit when the sun is shining.

1. Do you think that the system above would work nicely?

2. I assume the non essential circuit must still go through the inverter if I want excess solar to go into it? This would mean that I need the 8kw Sunsync?

3. If Eskom goes down, would the solar still be producing power or does it kick over to batteries? 

4. I can get one of those Geyserwise Titanium PTC elements if it would make a difference? It is just 2 and a half people showering every day, and washing dishes once a day.

Your opinions would be greatly appreciated. If I'm way off, please let me know. 

 

P.S. I still don't understand the neutral / live bonding thing on the Sunsync/inverters. That is a story for another day... I need excess brain power for that.

 

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Ah, I forgot that the SolarElectricityHandbook.com Solar Irradiance calculator said my panels should be at 56 degrees for "Optimal Year Round" irradiance. If I build a carport type structure for the panels (which doubles as entertainment area) then that is one hell of a pitch on the roof. It would look better to have a flat roof and then just mount the panels at an angle?

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Hi and welcome to the world of solar.

1. It should work perfectly 

2. The sunsynk had 3 connection. The first is the grid connection. This is both an input and output meaning that when you have excess solar you can push back on this connection to loads before the inverter. Downside is that these loads will not get power of the grid is down. 

The second is your primary or essential load output. 

The third is the aux output which can be configured as a second non essential load or it can be used as an input for a generator, wind turbine or another micro inverter. 

3. During the day of Eskom hours down it will still use Solar first before going to batteries. 

4. No idea about these and if they make any difference. I have a normal 4kw element in my geyser and it's connected to the inverter. I have the 8kw sunsynk with my whole house running from it. No splitting to essential and non essential. 

Regarding the neutral earth bond. I have not done it with my sunsynk and have not had any issues. Its not compulsory and only needed if you have a floating neutral when the grid goes down. 

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Hi Achmat,

Thanks very much.

9 hours ago, Achmat said:

The third is the aux output which can be configured as a second non essential load or it can be used as an input for a generator, wind turbine or another micro inverter. 

Awesome. Living on the south coast means LOTS of wind. But I was told the turbines are dam noisy.

9 hours ago, Achmat said:

4. No idea about these and if they make any difference. I have a normal 4kw element in my geyser and it's connected to the inverter. I have the 8kw sunsynk with my whole house running from it. No splitting to essential and non essential. 

Is your geyser on the aux output and not using battery power? e.g. Night time or Eskom is down. 

Maybe I should just cough up for the 8kw and do something like that.

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3 hours ago, coachpotato said:

Hi Achmat,

Thanks very much.

Awesome. Living on the south coast means LOTS of wind. But I was told the turbines are dam noisy.

Is your geyser on the aux output and not using battery power? e.g. Night time or Eskom is down. 

Maybe I should just cough up for the 8kw and do something like that.

I have everything on the essential load including the geyser but also have an evacuated tube solar geyser so hardly use the internal element but could run it from batteries if Eskom is down and there is not enough solar generation. 

If you can you should go for the 8kw unit. 

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I installed mine on top of my 4 car carport with about only 5°. I'm only using half the space and just decided it was easier to get more panels that try to mount them at the best angle on the flat carport. 

I will suffer in winter though but will be adding more panels to make up for this. Currently getting 60kwh per day in summer from 8.54kw of solar panels which is more than enough for my summer usage. 

Screenshot_20210108-152622_Photos.jpg

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On 2021/01/08 at 3:10 PM, Calvin said:

Remember that you would need huge gaps between the rows to stop them shading each other when the sun is low.

It's too much of a mission, and I have limited space so it will be flat on the roof. 

 

On 2021/01/08 at 3:27 PM, Achmat said:

I installed mine on top of my 4 car carport with about only 5°. I'm only using half the space and just decided it was easier to get more panels that try to mount them at the best angle on the flat carport. 

I will suffer in winter though but will be adding more panels to make up for this. Currently getting 60kwh per day in summer from 8.54kw of solar panels which is more than enough for my summer usage. 

The place I bought is +-45 years old so the old plans I was given, don't indicate the roof pitch. I got into the roof and worked it out, a healthy 15 degrees... It's dam low. You have to crawl around in there.

So I am going to put 1 string of 7 panels on that 15 degree roof facing 310 degrees (almost NW) and then 1 string of 7 panels on a new steel structure facing 40 degrees (almost NE). But, I'm not sure what the best pitch is for the new steel structure. PVWatts tells me 25 degrees gets me more power over the year than 20 and 30.

With those two strings, I should get a nice even spread of power throughout the day, from early morning to late afternoon. If I understand it correctly. And I can add on to both strings at a later stage as well.

I want to try build something like this, facing NE:

a882fbac-7921-4381-b44c-0b97075e6597.jpg.0c6bb7db4e7d16d40ae240769762525e.jpg

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"4. I can get one of those Geyserwise Titanium PTC elements if it would make a difference? It is just 2 and a half people showering every day, and washing dishes once a day."

I have 1.5kw one in my geyser, works fine for me but use with caution.

No one told me of the statup spike it makes every time. It spikes to 3.7kw for 5seconds then dropping to 1.5kw for rest of the time.

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40 minutes ago, PhillipMarx said:

"4. I can get one of those Geyserwise Titanium PTC elements if it would make a difference? It is just 2 and a half people showering every day, and washing dishes once a day."

I have 1.5kw one in my geyser, works fine for me but use with caution.

No one told me of the statup spike it makes every time. It spikes to 3.7kw for 5seconds then dropping to 1.5kw for rest of the time.

Ma se chops! Ok cool. Maybe I'll leave it alone for now.

Thanks for the heads up.

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On 2021/01/07 at 10:44 PM, coachpotato said:

Good evening all,

I'm new to the crazy world that is solar. I'm looking at getting my first system installed and my word, there is a [email protected] load to learn.

- I stay on the south coast in the EC

- I have an asbestos roof that faces approximately NW and SE. It is a very low pitch, I would guess below 20. The old building plans I found don't indicate what it is.

- I have a large rear garden where I could build a NE facing structure (that could double as an entertainment area). The wall is 8.8m across and there is about 18m of grass to the shed. I can't go too close to the shed because the neighbors have a huge tree there that would block the low winter sun. 

- we use about 26 units a day

- 0.75kw pool pump running 10 hours a day

- 150L kwikot geyser is outside and on a Geyserwise. Running 6am - 9am and 6pm - 8pm and set to 60 C.

- 0.75kw DAB water pump pushing water form tanks into the house.

- home office running about 200W 14 hours a day.

- lots of LED lights. a gate motor, security alarm, etc.

After checking what some friends have installed (all have Goodwe), and how they using their systems, I'm leaning towards:

- 12 x JA Solar 455W Mono MBB Percium Half-Cell Silver Frame MC4

- 2 or 3 x Pylontech US3000C 3.5kWh 

- Sunsynk 5kW Hybrid Inverter

I'll split the house on essential and non essential circuits. Essential would be home office, all lights, fridge, alarm, gate motor, water pump that get used day and night. Non essential would be all plugs, geyser, pool, oven, stove, dishwasher, washing machine, etc. I hoping that there is excess solar, then it can be used on the non essential circuit when the sun is shining.

1. Do you think that the system above would work nicely?

2. I assume the non essential circuit must still go through the inverter if I want excess solar to go into it? This would mean that I need the 8kw Sunsync?

3. If Eskom goes down, would the solar still be producing power or does it kick over to batteries? 

4. I can get one of those Geyserwise Titanium PTC elements if it would make a difference? It is just 2 and a half people showering every day, and washing dishes once a day.

Your opinions would be greatly appreciated. If I'm way off, please let me know. 

 

P.S. I still don't understand the neutral / live bonding thing on the Sunsync/inverters. That is a story for another day... I need excess brain power for that.

 

4. I can get one of those Geyserwise Titanium PTC elements if it would make a difference? It is just 2 and a half people showering every day, and washing dishes once a day.

 

Ive changed out my x2 geyser elements (3kw each) with 1,5 kw . Works perfect . Company in Cape Town (Montigue Gardens) can make it up for you. Paid R 400  for both..  Abso Industries ( absoheating.co.za). Speak to Bobby the owner . 021 552 7303

You cannot go wrong with the JA panels . x12 on my roof.. Very happy.. 

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