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Charging a car direct from panels

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  • Charging a car direct from panels

    Hi,

    I have an off-grid cabin with solar (1.2kW panels, Victron 150/35 SCC, 1200W inverter, 4kWh battery). Current daily production record is 6.77kWh. Works great, even runs a fridge/freezer and 6000btu A/C along with lights, pumps, etc at the same time.

    All good.

    Now add a PHEV vehicle. Even though small scale solar might not be cheaper than gas, if I can operate on electricity locally it means hauling less gas in Jerry cans to the off grid cabin.

    My current system won't support charging it because 1) inverter is to small and 2) not much extra capacity. Replacing it is obviously not economical.

    I can get a second 1.2kWh array fully racked and wired for less than $1000. But doing the standard panels --> SCC --> battery --> inverter seems pointless as I'd charge during the day.

    Does anyone know of an inverter that takes ~90V @ 15A (2S2P) or 180V @ 7A (4S) DC direct from the panels and inverts to 120V AC so that a Level 1 EV charger can be plugged in?
    In summary: panels --> inverter --> car charger cable --> car (completely closed system)

    Brian



  • #2
    I think the issue is finding a Level 1 charging station that can operate on 120 volts with a variable amperage input. Without using a battery as a buffer it is unlikely you will get a consistent output from a solar panel/inverter combination.
    I would consider adding panels to your system and upgrading the inverter. Either way you would be lucky to charge at 1000Watts. That might get you 12 to 16 miles on a good day.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by bcjohnso99 View Post
      Does anyone know of an inverter that takes ~90V @ 15A (2S2P) or 180V @ 7A (4S) DC direct from the panels and inverts to 120V AC so that a Level 1 EV charger can be plugged in?
      Nope.

      Solution - get a programmable EVSE, like the one from EVSEUpgrade. Program it to charge at 6 amps. Charge only during the day. Now you only have to supply 720 watts to your car - well within the range of your 1200 watt inverter. It will take longer of course but eventually you'll get a charge.

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