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Inverter Location - Outside - Temperature Extremes

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  • Mike90250
    replied
    A simple awning to provide shade from the sun, would be the most bang for the buck.

    To get fancy, throw a $20, 20" window box fan near them with a timer for 11am - 4pm to move air around

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  • emartin00
    replied
    You should be fine. These inverters are made to be installed outside, and there are probably tens if not hundreds of thousands of them installed outside.
    Heat is going to be harder on them than cold, and you live in a relatively cool climate.

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  • Flying Scot
    replied
    Folks - thx for your advice - all makes sense and pretty much reinforces my concerns (I was blindly hoping that folks would come back with 'no problem, don't worry, done this lots of times' etc ) FYI manufacturer's operating ambient temp range is between -40 & +55 deg C.

    Screen Shot 2019-12-18 at 10.21.02 PM.png


    As I said I'll ensure to fit a sun shade. The units have 10 year warranty and I have a back-up unit to give some flexibility in the event of a failure. I'll leave the install as-is for the moment. If I start having problems I'll look to fit a conditioned enclosure and update this thread accordingly. My decision to leave the install alone for the moment is largely because I suspect I caused the failure of the original unit by enclosing it and inadvertently causing the ambient temperature to increase.

    Screen Shot 2019-12-18 at 10.40.42 PM.png
    Attached Files

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  • peakbagger
    replied
    Shade really makes a big difference. Not sure if the proposed inverters have active or passive cooling but critters just love to make nests in the cooling channels. I saw one install once where they enclosed the entire inverter in a screened in box as otherwise they had to clean the filters every few weeks.
    Last edited by peakbagger; 12-19-2019, 08:11 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • J.P.M.
    replied
    I'd start by looking at what the mfg. of the equipment writes in the product manuals and product literature with respect to environmental operating conditions and limitations.

    As a general comment, the more variation in environmental conditions the equipment sees and the greater the speed of those variations, the probability that something will fail sooner will increase.

    If it was me, I'd get the inverters out of the weather and into a more controlled environment. Inverters are a bit like house pets. They get less likeable and less reliable the more they're left outside.

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  • Mike90250
    replied
    The larger the thermal excursions are, the faster the mechanical connections and solder joints stress and crack. All I really know about this is from experience with spacecraft, and the weeks we spend doing thermal analysis, and using exotic materials that have like TCE's so the stress is reduced. Even then with film resistors and chip capacitors, you have stresses between the layers of components. Eventually, something fails.

    https://www.murata.com/en-global/sup.../mlcc/mnt/0007
    https://slideplayer.com/slide/4213558/

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  • Inverter Location - Outside - Temperature Extremes

    Hi everyone - my original 5kW system (#1) had a Fronius inverter located in the garage and it lasted 11 years without issue - v. happy with its performance overall. However due to house remodelling (garage became a dining room) and the addition of another 5kW system (#2) - (I now have 2 x 5kW systems) - the inverters (#1 & #2) are now mounted on the side of my house. I have used Fronius Primo 5 (snap type inverters). I live in mountains of Colorado and temperatures typically drop to -10 F in winter. In summertime direct sun is an issue and I'll get an appropriate shading arrangement in place, however ambient temps can be as high as 80F. My concern is the temperature extremes will have a detrimental effect on the inverter life. So much so, I have purchased a spare Fronius inverter to facilitate quick replacement in the event of failure & to maximize system uptime.

    I would greatly appreciate any relevant input - similar situations, what to expect, requirement for a conditioned enclosure, etc....

    Sincere Thx
    Jim
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