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  • I find 40W equivalents from major brands to be as bright as 60W ceiling fan bulbs. (Maybe they're rated so they stay at least 40W equivalent as they dim towards end of life?)
    My rooms tend to have multiple sconces on the walls, so those 40W ones are great.

    I use 60W or occasionally 75W equivalents for stubborn rooms that need lots of light.

    100W equivalents are hot, rare beasts around here, I don't use them much. I would be careful with enclosed fixtures, not many LEDs are rated for use in them, too hot.

    I've had about 4 crees fail out of about 75 in a couple years, mostly new models before they worked the kinks out. Not bad. Of a dozen or so Philips and Sylvania, no failures so far.

    Comment


    • Originally posted by DanKegel View Post
      100W equivalents are hot, rare beasts around here, I don't use them much. I would be
      careful with enclosed fixtures, not many LEDs are rated for use in them, too hot.
      I just figured that 100W equivalents running an actual 15W would be way cooler than the original incandescent. I
      kind of like 100W or 75W, the 60s and down used to seem so much dimmer. Bruce Roe

      Comment


      • Originally posted by bcroe View Post

        I just figured that 100W equivalents running an actual 15W would be way cooler than the original incandescent. I
        kind of like 100W or 75W, the 60s and down used to seem so much dimmer. Bruce Roe
        I just replaced a 22 watt CFL with a 60 watt equivalent LED (i think it is rated about 10 watts). The LED is much brighter and is white in color compared to the CFL.

        Comment


        • I trust Bruce knows what he's doing, looking forward to hearing what ends up working for him.

          LEDs are more sensitive to heat than the CFLs somehow.
          The heat is concentrated in the driver base, not distributed over the emitting surface, I think.
          Unless you've tried a lower wattage and found it lacking, avoid the 100W equivalents, they're overkill most of the time (and more expensive?).

          Be careful to get the right color temperature.
          For some reason, it's easy to accidentally get a more sunlight-y LED than it was with incandescents.
          If you like warm light, e.g. for living spaces, 2700K is the right one.
          Higher temperature like 3000K (or even 5000K) are brilliant bluish sunlight, good for work areas.

          Comment


          • Originally posted by DanKegel View Post
            LEDs are more sensitive to heat than the CFLs somehow.
            The heat is concentrated in the driver base, not distributed over the emitting surface, I thinkW equivalents, they're overkill most of the time (and more expensive?).

            Be careful to get the right color temperature.
            For some reason, it's easy to accidentally get a more sunlight-y LED than it was with incandescents.
            LEDs thrive on cold temperatures and have high output when cold. The lumens output is reduced at higher temperatures and if they can't reject enough heat from the die junction it significantly shortens the service life. While it's true LEDs are more efficient than many other lighting types there is still a small percent of energy converted to heat and that energy builds up quickly. It has to be dealt with using heat sinks. In some automotive LED headlamps they use small cooling fans to prevent overheating.

            White LEDs were originally easiest and cheapest to produce in the blue-white color range (5000K). They create white light through the process of luminescence. All white LEDs are actually blue LEDs that excite a phosphor layer surrounding the die to produce what we peceive as white light. As the production of white LEDs have evolved, the manufacturers have been able to modify the phosphor layer to get a uniform warmer white light that better simulates a traditional filament bulb. Many people find the warm light less harsh to the eyes.

            Dave W. Gilbert AZ
            6.63kW grid-tie owner

            Comment


            • Originally posted by azdave View Post
              White LEDs were originally easiest and cheapest to produce in the blue-white color range (5000K). They create white light through the process of luminescence. All white LEDs are actually blue LEDs that excite a phosphor layer surrounding the die to produce what we peceive as white light. As the production of white LEDs have evolved, the manufacturers have been able to modify the phosphor layer to get a uniform warmer white light that better simulates a traditional filament bulb.
              Yeah, it does seem like blue-white was easier to make, and they've been struggling to achieve that 'warm' look of traditional bulbs.
              wikipedia.org/wiki/Light-emitting_diode#White says there are several ways to achieve white LEDs.
              Cree used to offer a "TW" bulb that used neodymium glass to achieve higher CRI (color rendering index) at the cost of lower efficiency. I think they stopped doing that a few years ago.

              Comment


              • It looks like it will take some experimentation to get the interior lighting right; was
                hoping for a ready made solution on this front.

                Winters here are extremely variable from year to year. A couple years ago we were getting record setting
                snowfall, besides a relentless extreme cold. I wasn't about to lose KWH under the cold clear skies; was out
                close to 2 dozen times getting panels cleared before the sun was up. The past month we were trying to set
                a record minimum snowfall, and did see some rain. The AWD snowblower has been sitting so many weeks,
                I should go out and connect a battery maintainer to it.

                Bragging rights to not having bought a KWH in years are OK, but that means that I am turning over some
                production to the PoCo for free every year. After last year, the new theme is "don't use ANY propane", and
                don't worry so much about having a true up time surplus.

                The worst cloud weeks are about past, and some serious sun sometimes shows. The last couple days each
                set a KWH production record for 2017, 87KWH today isn't too shabby for the beginning of Feb. The PoCo got
                the bill out very promptly this month, so here is the the running energy reserve curve. I have not spared the
                KWH to keep things comfortable here, and the propane furnace backup hasn't been run at all this winter.

                With the usual increased production and decreased consumption in March, it looks like there will be a good
                surplus at 1 April true up anyway. More electric appliances are being seriously considered. I think she wants
                a pantry maintained at 50F. Bruce Roe

                PVresFeb17.jpg

                Comment


                • New PV adventure this month. True up time came; by not running the propane furnace at all the past winter, I
                  only gave the PoCo 5000 left over KWH, instead of the 8000 a year ago. The 2017-18 plan is to put a larger
                  mini split in the car shop, and try to keep this building above freezing all winter. And at the same time investigate
                  the possibility of feeding some excess PV solar power directly into the main rectifier section of the mini; a chance
                  to do more PV without going through the PoCo. If it works well, I may try to upgrade to entire house to mini splits,
                  which my MN cousin likes so well.

                  Friday I get a robot call from the PoCo that they are doing an area wide conversion to SMART METERS in the
                  next 10 days. A previous letter had mentioned this. What does it do? Eliminate the meter reader via its cell
                  phone antenna. They say gives me internet access, no details. Charge me time of day rates, add $3 to my
                  monthly bill. Save me more on electricity overall, except I don't buy any electricity.

                  This is entirely in line with what other utilities have done; while you are trying to be more and more efficient to
                  reduce energy use, they keep raising the fixed monthly connect charges. $2 to $28 in a relatively short time
                  for the gas co, no end in sight. That was the final straw causing me to PV grid connect, have as few different
                  utilities as possible. But I need the PoCo.

                  I called and was assured the smart meter would be net metering compatible. An appointment is needed, so
                  the inverters can be shut off the night before. Not good to just pull a meter with 60A of current flowing, hard
                  to say what damage might occur. No appointment yet, I'm in the garage today and hear a noise. Running
                  around to the front I startle the bejesus out of the guy carrying a new smart meter. We look at my meter and
                  he says "Its already been changed, I'm not putting in this one.". Good because the inverters are running flat
                  out. I haven't seen any blinking clocks, inverters not missing a beat, no apparent power interruption,
                  HOW DID THEY DO THAT? Anyway now I can go to the FERMILAB EMC meeting Wed instead of staying home.

                  The next monthly billing ought to show that my Grid Tie PV is still functioning (from a billing perspective) as
                  before. I just might find some early April KWH got lost, but that period is close to break even so I don't care.
                  The next few months are a different story. Bruce Roe

                  Comment


                  • Sounds like you had a Smart Meter all along. Did the POCO not swap out your meter when you signed the interconnect agreement?

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by DanS26 View Post
                      Sounds like you had a Smart Meter all along. Did the POCO not swap
                      out your meter when you signed the interconnect agreement?
                      I paid them $100 for the 20 year agreement, which included swapping out my old mechanical meter for an
                      electronic meter. But its been swapped again, I don't know when, probably to a "smart" meter. Perhaps
                      they took off the cover and put jumpers around the meter for the swap, so service wasn't disrupted. Because
                      I haven't had to reset anything in quite a while. I will probably complain to CUB that the $3 a month charge
                      is way too high to pay for a meter, which is only there to make more money for the PoCo anyway. Bruce Roe

                      Comment


                      • A nice sunny day Tues, did a post winter array inspection. The clamp on DC ammeter verified that each string
                        was delivering current nearly identical to similar strings. Structures looked good. Need to pick up the test panels,
                        remove snow blower and install mower. Bruce Roe

                        Comment


                        • The test panels from last year are back in storage, pulled up the stakes and ran the mower over those spots.

                          The swapped out SMART METER (useless to me) has been in service a month, and there may
                          actually be something on the display I can read. The first billing, presumably by radio report
                          instead of meter man, came today only 3 days into the month. I received a net metering credit
                          comparable to past Aprils, so I presume the NET METERING is operating correctly as before.
                          While announcements indicated everyone would be paying $3 a month extra for a smart meter,
                          careful examination of billing shows no increase. Guess us net metering customers are
                          exempted by our original $100 contract fee, the current bill was actually $0.24 less. Now to
                          try to find online access.

                          In the mean time I have seen ads and discussions about panel racking. Things that are universally
                          absent are any seasonal means of changing tilt, or anything to reduce the labor of snow removal
                          (PV solar isn't confined to rooftops in the SW desert). My own array used to take 90 minutes to
                          clear of heavy snow, but with modifications that was reduced to 40 minutes, and taking a
                          lot less muscle and snow pile relocating. Plans are forming here to deal with the tilt issue, not
                          much history to go on. The foundation will track the slope of the ground as usual.

                          Also advertised was a grid tie with some battery backup. The KWH ability of the battery plant
                          wasn't mentioned, of course. Best to see how the phone Co has done it for over a century. The
                          first mission of the room sized battery plant is to smooth the ripple of the AC powered rectifiers.
                          In this gentle service batteries can last decades. The other mission is to maintain continuous
                          service with an AC outage, JUST LONG ENOUGH to get the backup diesels running (gas turbine
                          in Chicago). Not much battery strain there either, no reduction in available power. The batteries
                          discharge rarely and very little, this is the way to go. Bruce Roe
                          Last edited by bcroe; 05-15-2017, 10:43 PM.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by bcroe View Post
                            The test panels from last year are back in storage, pulled up the stakes and ran the mower over those spots.

                            The swapped out SMART METER (useless to me) has been in service a month, and there may
                            actually be something on the display I can read. The first billing, presumably by radio report
                            instead of meter man, came today only 3 days into the month. I received a net metering credit
                            comparable to past Aprils, so I presume the NET METERING is operating correctly as before.
                            While announcements indicated everyone would be paying $3 a month extra for a smart meter,
                            carful examination of billing shows no increase. Guess us net metering customers are
                            exempted by our original $100 contract fee, the current bill was actually $0.24 less. Now to
                            try to find online access.

                            In the mean time I have seen ads and discussions about panel racking. Things that are universally
                            absent are any seasonal means of changing tilt, or anything to reduce the labor of snow removal
                            (PV solar isn't confined to rooftops in the SW desert). My own array used to take 90 minutes to
                            clear of heavy snow, but with modifications that was reduced to 40 minutes, and taking a
                            lot less muscle and snow pile relocating. Plans are forming here to deal with the tilt issue, not
                            much history to go on. The foundation will track the slope of the ground as usual.

                            Also advertised was a grid tie with some battery backup. The KWH ability of the battery plant
                            wasn't mentioned, of course. Best to see how the phone Co has done it for over a century. The
                            first mission of the room sized battery plant is to smooth the ripple of the AC powered rectifiers.
                            In this gentle service batteries can last decades. The other mission is to maintain continuous
                            service with an AC outage, JUST LONG ENOUGH to get the backup diesels running (gas turbine
                            in Chicago). Not much battery strain there either, no reduction in available power. The batteries
                            discharge rarely and very little, this is the way to go. Bruce Roe
                            Based on my hands on history of battery systems at multiple Industrial facilities for either large UPS or Medium voltage switchgear the batteries were rarely used because the normal power source did not go down.

                            We did perform monthly testing on the UPS and yearly on the switchgear battery system so they did get some exercise.

                            To be safe the UPS batteries were replace every 5 years (or sooner if they failed). The Switchgear seemed to last a lot longer but IMO the reasoning not to replace them periodically like the UPS system was a gamble.

                            Based on my 40 years experience, most people forget about battery systems until they are needed. Some times the end result is that the battery fails and the equipment goes down. Then there is a fire drill getting in a new set to replace the ones that have sat there and slowly died.

                            I truly shy away from suggesting a UPS of any kind to be installed for systems that are not checked or maintained on a monthly basis.

                            Comment


                            • Watching my latest "smart meter", apparently it has a running display of my KWH consumed. Its up
                              to 329 KWH in a month and counting. For this season it only goes up at night, while the PV solar is
                              down. With the house now coasting through the night without the heat pump, it won't advance much
                              till another season. There is no detectable indication of all the KWH being pushed out days, though
                              that did show up on the billing. Bruce Roe

                              Comment


                              • Just an observation about shadowing here under good sun. By beginning afternoon the WEST system had
                                collected 47 KWH, but the EAST system had collected only 40 KWH. The two systems show identical
                                production under good midday sun. The difference is the rising sun hitting the WEST system first, completely
                                clearing the shadows on EAST much later. So WEST is running some 18% ahead for this time. Toward the
                                end of the day EAST about catches up, which means the same effect is reversed for the setting sun.

                                It appears that relocating panels can solve most of the discrepancy, without cutting another series of trees.
                                That and solve some other issues previously mentioned. Early work saw one system under producing while
                                the other was in clipping, which was corrected by rearranging strings between inverters. It looks like a
                                complete checkerboard pattern of the 2 systems is the ultimate arrangement. The skies often start clear
                                here, then cloud later, so the first change will be to maximize the rising sun. If it ever stops raining, I'd like
                                to start digging new foundations. Bruce Roe

                                Comment

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