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  • New Solar Set Up

    Hey New to the forum,
    I live in Puerto Rico and going on 90+ days without power after Cat 5 Hurracaine so decided to invest in a solar system to use as a back up and when power returns use to power certain things in the house (using transfer switch- Reliance Controls Corporation 31406B Pro/Tran 6-Circuit Indoor Transfer Switch for Generators Up to 7,500 Running Watts)

    So here's my soon to be system:
    • (8) Duracell Ultra High Capacity 6V Golf Cart Battery (230 A/H) @24V
    • (3) 260W Allmax Plus Solar Panels
    • (1) Solar Epic 4210A MPPT Controller
    • (1) Reliable 3000W @24VDC to @120VAC true sine wave inverter

    Well the goal is to later on keep expanding to hopefully cut the ties to energy company. Any suggestions are more than welcomed

  • #2
    The only way to configure these 3, 60 cell panels in a 24 volt system is to series wire them. Three of these panels in series will have a Voc. very close to your max Voc. limit of 100 volts with this controller. Does your location get cold in the winter? I see you're in Puerto Rico but I wonder if you get cold at higher altitudes which will increase your open circuit voltage and risk frying your controller.You would do better with one of the 150 volt max controllers. That or add one more panel and wire two strings of two in parallel, keeping your voltage in a safe range.
    Last edited by littleharbor; 12-18-2017, 04:36 PM.
    2.2kw Suntech mono, Classic 200, NEW Trace SW4024

    Comment


    • #3
      We don't get cold here at lowest it gets its like 75 in the early morning and that high up. I thought about that and was thinking of wiring them in parallel to stay below in the voltage max. The cable run isn't to far so planning on thick wire? What do you think?

      Comment


      • #4
        Those aren't 24 volt panels. You need at least two in series. Personally I wouldn't chance it putting 3 in series. One more panel would probably be the least expensive route. You'd get more power while you're at it.
        2.2kw Suntech mono, Classic 200, NEW Trace SW4024

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by littleharbor View Post
          Those aren't 24 volt panels. You need at least two in series. Personally I wouldn't chance it putting 3 in series. One more panel would probably be the least expensive route. You'd get more power while you're at it.
          If everything else is already purchased, 1 more panel and 2S2P wiring looks good. Those panels have a 38 Voc.... 3 in series will almost definitely trip over-voltage alarms on a 100 V CC.

          If you are still designing, and intend on expanding, you might consider putting all 8 batteries in series for 48 V right from the beginning. The CC will be a bit more expensive, but the room to grow could be worth it.
          CS6P-260P/SE3000 - http://tiny.cc/ed5ozx

          Comment


          • #6
            Unfortunately what you bought will not work together as a unit and poorly matched up. You really should have done your homework before buying anything. You broke the first rule using a prime number of panels (3). That means you only have two configuration options of all panels in parallel or all inn series. 3 can work wired in series if you had bought a charge controller with a input voltage of 150 volts or higher. So you cannot wire them in parallel because the voltage is too low for 24 volt batteries, and you cannot wire them in series because your controller cannot tolerate the input voltage . Your only options are:
            • Use two panels in series and loose a panel and 4 batteries.
            • Replace the Controller to allow you to wire all three panels in series.
            • Buy a 4th panel

            Take your pick

            Next issue is the batteries. You will be replacing them in a year and you might get lucky and get 2 years out of them. They are low quality and to compound the problem with 8 of them configured for 24 volts means they must be wired 4S2P. By using a parallel configuration you cut cycle life in half. As a consequence it will destroy the batteries prematurely. You could wire them for 48 volts but that would require you to replace the charger controller and inverter.

            Speaking of inverter, you do not have enough battery to support a 3000 watt 24 volt Inverter. They would struggle even with a 2000 watt Inverter. Your Inverter as a design rule should not be any larger than the panel wattage. With your panel wattage, controller and battery size, 1000 watts is as large of an inverter your equipment could handle.

            Sorry but what you have will not work.
            Last edited by Sunking; 12-19-2017, 10:16 AM.
            MSEE, PE

            Comment


            • #7
              1. your panel voltage, in parallel is too low for a 24 volt system
              2. You can get another panel and wire 2S2P. Your controllers recommended wattage limit @ 24 volts is 1040 watts.
              3. You are OK with 2 strings of batteries, although a single 48 volt string would be optimum. Thing is to go 48 volts you will need a 48 volt inverter, a new charge controller with a 150 volt limit and 6 panels wired 3S2P to support the battery bank.
              2.2kw Suntech mono, Classic 200, NEW Trace SW4024

              Comment


              • #8
                So going by what everyone is posting my cheapest and best bet is to
                1. Buy another panel still usong same CC
                2. Degrade from 3000w inverter to 1,500w?

                still havent bought CC and inverter
                Last edited by Emorales; 12-19-2017, 11:10 AM.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by littleharbor View Post
                  . 3. You are OK with 2 strings of batteries,.
                  Absolutely correct providing he likes cutting cycle life in half and replacing batteries more than necessary. Sure you can do it just like choosing to smoke and a diet of fried chicken and french fries.

                  MSEE, PE

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Emorales View Post
                    So going by what everyone is posting my best bet is to
                    1. Buy another panel still usong same CC
                    2. Degrade from 3000w inverter to 1,500w?

                    still havent bought CC and inverter
                    No sir smart money would be:
                    • Buy a 150 Voc or higher voltage 40 amp or larger Charge Controller that supports 48 volt battery.
                    • Buy a 48 volt 1000 to 1500 watt Inverter
                    • Configure batteries for 48 volts.
                    • Wire the panels 3 in series

                    Additionally you must have a Generator and a 60 to 100 Amp 48 volt Battery Charger. It is required to do monthly maintenance EQ charge, and to generate power on cloudy days. Otherwise you will destroy the batteries from chronic undercharging especially since you do not have enough panel wattage to support a 24 volt 460 AH batteries.
                    MSEE, PE

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Well now that we know the CC and inverter haven't been purchased yet your answer (Sunking) makes more sense. Trying to give advice based on equipment listed is obviously going to be different than what would be advised now knowing the OP only has batteries and 3 solar panels.
                      I'm not in the mood for a pissing contest so I'm going to step out.
                      Last edited by littleharbor; 12-19-2017, 01:40 PM.
                      2.2kw Suntech mono, Classic 200, NEW Trace SW4024

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by littleharbor View Post
                        Those aren't 24 volt panels. You need at least two in series. Personally I wouldn't chance it putting 3 in series. One more panel would probably be the least expensive route. You'd get more power while you're at it.
                        So I'm leaning towards this route. Its only costing $200+ my current budget, and giving the status of things here in PR not to wise to spend the extra money. Going with:
                        • (8) Duracell Ultra High Capacity 6V Golf Cart Battery (460 A/H) @24V
                        • (4) 260W Allmax Plus Solar Panels (wired series paralell)
                        • (1) Solar Epic 4210A MPPT Controller
                        • (1) 1500w or 2000W @24VDC to @120VAC true sine wave inverter
                        • Have a 3500w Honda generator
                        • Getting 60a battery charger
                        My question is will this work? (I know it's not the optimal route)
                        And the other questio is, why wiring batteries in series and parallel decrease the life cycle?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Emorales View Post

                          So I'm leaning towards this route. Its only costing $200+ my current budget, and giving the status of things here in PR not to wise to spend the extra money. Going with:
                          • (8) Duracell Ultra High Capacity 6V Golf Cart Battery (460 A/H) @24V
                          • (4) 260W Allmax Plus Solar Panels (wired series paralell)
                          • (1) Solar Epic 4210A MPPT Controller
                          • (1) 1500w or 2000W @24VDC to @120VAC true sine wave inverter
                          • Have a 3500w Honda generator
                          • Getting 60a battery charger

                          My question is will this work? (I know it's not the optimal route)
                          And the other questio is, why wiring batteries in series and parallel decrease the life cycle?
                          Yes it will work.

                          Parallel battery strings are not ideal because it is hard to keep current flow balanced between the two strings, especially as they age. In series, all batteries will see the same current, so you don't have to worry so much about one battery carrying too much of the load (as long as the string was built balanced at the beginning). A hydrometer should be on your shopping list and regular specific gravity measurements should be part of your maintenance plan.
                          CS6P-260P/SE3000 - http://tiny.cc/ed5ozx

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by sensij View Post

                            Yes it will work.

                            Parallel battery strings are not ideal because it is hard to keep current flow balanced between the two strings, especially as they age. In series, all batteries will see the same current, so you don't have to worry so much about one battery carrying too much of the load (as long as the string was built balanced at the beginning). A hydrometer should be on your shopping list and regular specific gravity measurements should be part of your maintenance plan.
                            Can the battery bank be left without discharging for prolonged periods of time? Meaning solar charged every day but not discharged during evening for prolonged time

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Sunking View Post

                              No sir smart money would be:[LIST][*]Buy a 150 Voc or higher voltage 40 amp or larger Charge Controller that supports 48 volt battery.[*]Buy a 48 volt 1000 to 1500 watt Inverter[*]Configure batteries for 48 volts.[*]Wire the panels 3 in series

                              Additionally you must have a Generator and a 60 to 100 Amp 48 volt Battery Charger. It is required to do monthly maintenance EQ charge, and to generate power on cloudy days. Otherwise you will destroy the batteries from chronic undercharging especially since you do not have enough panel wattage to support a 24 volt 460 AH batteries.
                              So as an update. Im following advice to the T. Any suggestions as far as a 48v battery charger that can be runned of 3500w generator

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