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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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When it rains it pours...

My house has an asbestos roof (like thousands of other houses, schools, hospitals, etc.) and I got Wilcote in to refurbish it 4 years ago. I was told that it would now last for a very long time and their products have a 10 year guarantee.

Well, the paint has thinned and lichen is growing through. I emailed pictures and called them and now they say that the government changed the asbestos regulations in NOV 2020 and they can no longer clean or prepare the roof. Government is trying to eradicate it.

I said it looks like they didn't clean and prepare it properly and what happens now with the 10 year guarantee. He chuckled and said that there was no way, at that time, of them knowing the regulations would change and that they are not allowed to clean or prep so there isn't anything they can do. It might require a new roof. 

So I have to decide if I want to attempt another encapsulation process with a different company (that has a license for the new regulations) or replace the whole dam thing. 160m2. It is going to be dam expensive. Sigh.

I've bought a 8kw Sunsynk and 2 x US3000C and paid the deposit for the panels and install. It is all going to just sit there, gathering dust, waiting until the roof situation is sorted.

 

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1 hour ago, coachpotato said:

When it rains it pours...

My house has an asbestos roof (like thousands of other houses, schools, hospitals, etc.) and I got Wilcote in to refurbish it 4 years ago. I was told that it would now last for a very long time and their products have a 10 year guarantee.

Well, the paint has thinned and lichen is growing through. I emailed pictures and called them and now they say that the government changed the asbestos regulations in NOV 2020 and they can no longer clean or prepare the roof. Government is trying to eradicate it.

I said it looks like they didn't clean and prepare it properly and what happens now with the 10 year guarantee. He chuckled and said that there was no way, at that time, of them knowing the regulations would change and that they are not allowed to clean or prep so there isn't anything they can do. It might require a new roof. 

So I have to decide if I want to attempt another encapsulation process with a different company (that has a license for the new regulations) or replace the whole dam thing. 160m2. It is going to be dam expensive. Sigh.

I've bought a 8kw Sunsynk and 2 x US3000C and paid the deposit for the panels and install. It is all going to just sit there, gathering dust, waiting until the roof situation is sorted.

 

If only the Tesla Solar Roof were available in SA, and cost effective, you'd be an ideal candidate.

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4 hours ago, coachpotato said:

4 years ago

Rules much longer than that in place. 
Problem is disposing of the material as you cannot dump it at the municipal dump. 
Go for a Kliplok roof. 

Edited by Johandup
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3 hours ago, Johandup said:

Rules much longer than that in place. 

The guys were allowed clean and prep back in 2017. I got quotes from 3 large independent licensed asbestos contractors back then. Wilcote are (maybe WAS now with new regulations) a national asbestos contractor.

Asbestos Abatement Regulations - 10 November 2020 No. 43893 - These regulations repealed the 2001 regulations.

3 hours ago, Johandup said:

Go for a Kliplok roof. 

A lot of people are recommending these. I must do some research, thanks.  

asbestos.png

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On 2021/01/08 at 1:27 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. 

Screenshot_20210108-152622_Photos.jpg

You should consider that you will be too exposed to snow, hail, dust.
It won't be easy to perform the maintenance of these panels.

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16 hours ago, coachpotato said:

The guys were allowed clean and prep back in 2017. I got quotes from 3 large independent licensed asbestos contractors back then. Wilcote are (maybe WAS now with new regulations) a national asbestos contractor.

Asbestos Abatement Regulations - 10 November 2020 No. 43893 - These regulations repealed the 2001 regulations.

You can / should apply for exemptions from these rules as they (probably) apply to uncovered roofs.

We used to apply for exemptions all the time in the mining industry. It is all about risk management. 
Your ex contractors know this and are escaping their responsibilities. 
Find out who the environmental inspector for your area is and make an appointment. Greenies are kindhearted people. 

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17 minutes ago, Johandup said:

You can / should apply for exemptions from these rules as they (probably) apply to uncovered roofs.

We used to apply for exemptions all the time in the mining industry. It is all about risk management. 
Your ex contractors know this and are escaping their responsibilities. 
Find out who the environmental inspector for your area is and make an appointment. Greenies are kindhearted people. 

Cool thanks. I will find out.

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1 hour ago, JOPA said:

You should consider that you will be too exposed to snow, hail, dust.
It won't be easy to perform the maintenance of these panels.

No snow or hail in Somerset West. I hose it down of dust every couple of months but have found that the dust has really little effect after 3 months of not housing it down. 

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So I'm up and running. 🥳

8kw Sunsynk + 2 x US3000C + 7 x 455w JA Solar Mono (single string on the main roof facing NW). The other 7 panels are going on a new structure facing NE - but awaiting design from architect.

I've been trying to read all the info about the Pylons on this forum, and it is a lot to take in and understand. ,

1.)  Charge Amps are set to 40A and should be 74A?

2.) Float V looks higher than all the discussions I found on search (e.g. from @Coulomb @Vassen) . My understanding is it should be lower?

3.) Are the Absorption V and Equalization V correct? 

4.) The Battery Voltage at 100% SOC was only 51.48V. 

IMG_20210127_161847.png

IMG_20210127_190421.png

IMG_20210121_164040.jpg

IMG_20210127_161758.png

IMG_20210127_161822.png

IMG_20210127_161832.png

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11 minutes ago, coachpotato said:

So I'm up and running. 🥳

8kw Sunsynk + 2 x US3000C + 7 x 455w JA Solar Mono (single string on the main roof facing NW). The other 7 panels are going on a new structure facing NE - but awaiting design from architect.

I've been trying to read all the info about the Pylons on this forum, and it is a lot to take in and understand. ,

1.)  Charge Amps are set to 40A and should be 74A?

2.) Float V looks higher than all the discussions I found on search (e.g. from @Coulomb @Vassen) . My understanding is it should be lower?

3.) Are the Absorption V and Equalization V correct? 

4.) The Battery Voltage at 100% SOC was only 51.48V. 

IMG_20210127_161847.png

IMG_20210127_190421.png

IMG_20210121_164040.jpg

IMG_20210127_161758.png

IMG_20210127_161822.png

IMG_20210127_161832.png

Nice. 

First thing you should do is request an update if you are not yet on the latest version. 

You don't need to bother with 1 to 4 as the BMS overrides the settings in the invert. 

On the first pic it does that the BMS is limiting charge and discharge currents. 

Welcome to the sunsynk club. 

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3 hours ago, coachpotato said:

So I'm up and running. 🥳

8kw Sunsynk + 2 x US3000C + 7 x 455w JA Solar Mono (single string on the main roof facing NW). The other 7 panels are going on a new structure facing NE - but awaiting design from architect.

I've been trying to read all the info about the Pylons on this forum, and it is a lot to take in and understand. ,

1.)  Charge Amps are set to 40A and should be 74A?

2.) Float V looks higher than all the discussions I found on search (e.g. from @Coulomb @Vassen) . My understanding is it should be lower?

3.) Are the Absorption V and Equalization V correct? 

4.) The Battery Voltage at 100% SOC was only 51.48V. 

IMG_20210127_161847.png

IMG_20210127_190421.png

IMG_20210121_164040.jpg

IMG_20210127_161758.png

IMG_20210127_161822.png

IMG_20210127_161832.png

That's a cool install, congratulations. Agreed with @vassen on the separation of AC and DC circuits though.

The pics are never complete if we do not get to see the solar panels, please consider posting a few pics of those 455W Bad Boys? 😍

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