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Are DIY Solar Panels Worth it?

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  • Thanks SunEagle.

    I totally failed My investment gone waste. What I am getting from the panel just 8 amps maximum.

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    • I am thinking to run a 24 volt inverter from 12 volt battery using DC to DC Boost converter, is it good or bad?

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      • Originally posted by SNF View Post
        Thanks SunEagle.

        I totally failed My investment gone waste. What I am getting from the panel just 8 amps maximum.
        Well 8 amps from a 150watt panel is about correct. So not really a waste. Wiring 2 of those 150w panels in parallel will get you about 16 amps while on the low side of the charging scale for that battery system is workable.

        Whenever you use a device to change the voltage (24v to 12v) you lose some efficiency and get less out of the battery system. The same happens when you "boost" the voltage.

        You could wire the batteries in series to make a 24volt system but you would need to wire the panels in series to increase the voltage enough to charge a 24v battery. Unfortunately you then lose half the charging amps because you are using a PWM CC. You might want to look into finding a quality MPPT type charger to get the most out of your 300 watts.

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        • Originally posted by SNF View Post
          I am thinking to run a 24 volt inverter from 12 volt battery using DC to DC Boost converter, is it good or bad?
          Bad idea. They are expensive and not readily available in the power levels you will need. In addition your efficiency will decline, and you will likely have stability problems with your inverter.

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          • Well, I have an idea about 24 volt system but I am unable to adopt this option. It is out of my capacity, even I cannot afford to replace PWM Charge Controller with the MPPT Charge Controller within my existing system due to its high cost.

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            • Originally posted by jflorey2 View Post
              Bad idea. They are expensive and not readily available in the power levels you will need. In addition your efficiency will decline, and you will likely have stability problems with your inverter.
              Then What about the solar generator, with 150 watt only panel giving us 5 kva power by some company. I saw a product while searching youtube.

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              • Originally posted by SNF View Post
                Then What about the solar generator, with 150 watt only panel giving us 5 kva power by some company. I saw a product while searching youtube.
                They clearly want your money. Remember - just because something is advertised doesn't mean it's real.

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                • Originally posted by SNF View Post

                  Then What about the solar generator, with 150 watt only panel giving us 5 kva power by some company. I saw a product while searching youtube.
                  Most of those products will take the battery voltage and Ah rating to calculate the amount of power you can generate even though you will never get 100% out of the battery more than once.

                  The other false advertising is they claim the system can provide X number of watts based on the Inverter rating. Even though that inverter would drain the battery within minutes if that high a load was connected to it.

                  Last thing you really should understand is the youtube is for purely an entertainment process. Over 98% of what is posted is not accurate or truthful.

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                  • I agree with you, It is hard to understand the logic they are trying to give. By the way, Mr. SunEagle I am getting 8 Ampere in total from the both panels, connected in parallel. one thing make me clear please, let say I use a 1000 watt inverter to run 100 watt load in total, yet it will drain the battery or this problem is connected with only heavy load.

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                    • Originally posted by SNF View Post
                      I agree with you, It is hard to understand the logic they are trying to give. By the way, Mr. SunEagle I am getting 8 Ampere in total from the both panels, connected in parallel. one thing make me clear please, let say I use a 1000 watt inverter to run 100 watt load in total, yet it will drain the battery or this problem is connected with only heavy load.
                      Using an inverter that is much bigger than your load ends up wasting more power due to the higher inefficiency of that inverter. If you check the spec the "losses" are usually some % of the total wattage rating. The bigger the wattage the more watts lost. Probably not enough to quickly drain your battery but enough to increase your "true" daily watt hour usage.

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                      • So it is the logic behind introducing Micro Inverter to connect little load with each panel and combine those inverters output in parallel will increase their efficiency, less loss and increase wattage.

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                        • Originally posted by SNF View Post
                          So it is the logic behind introducing Micro Inverter to connect little load with each panel and combine those inverters output in parallel will increase their efficiency, less loss and increase wattage.
                          No. If your system includes batteries then a Micro Inverter can't be used since it converts the DC panel voltage to AC voltage. You would not be able to charge your batteries that way unless you use an AC to DC charger which then introduces more losses.

                          Micro Inverters work well for grid tie pv systems to get the most out of each panel if shading is involved. But I have not heard of anyone using them for a solar/battery system.

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                          • So please fill me up with the procedure of calculating solar system that will be save for my future investment.
                            Here is 220 volt system.

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                            • Originally posted by SNF View Post
                              So please fill me up with the procedure of calculating solar system that will be save for my future investment.
                              Here is 220 volt system.
                              Measure your loads, generally looking at your electric bill statement shows how many KWh you used for the billing period. divide that to get KWh used every day.
                              Your goal is to harvest about 80 - 90 % of your usage. It will be a little lower harvest in winter or cloudy weather, but you are looking for annual average harvest.

                              Powerfab top of pole PV mount (2) | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
                              || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
                              || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

                              solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
                              gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister

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                              • Thanks for your guidance. This is really informative post. I have learn so many important tings from solar panel talk.

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