24 Hours Of Solar

Discussion in 'Solar Power' started by funflair, Jun 17, 2015.

  1. funflair

    funflair Funster Life Member

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    Well only while the sun is out.

    Talking to John @Don Quixote at the fix it about solar computers and how much we can harnes he suggested I post a thread on it so here goes.

    We have 320 watts of solar panels and a Votronic MPPT controller that is also set up to run the fridge on 12 volts when there is spare capacity. We arrived at Stratford show on Monday and at 5:30 pm I read the solar computer thingy and noted the readings, after a nice sunny day yesterday and using the inverter for the usual microwave, coffee machine, hair dryer etc I read the solar computer thingy again at about 7:30 pm by which time in just over the 24 hour period we had made 90ah of power, i will add that as the batteries were never flat enough to absorbe this much power it was the fridge that was using it, but it shows what is available, peak amps is around 20.

    I will keep an eye on it for the rest of the week and report back.

    Martin
     
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  2. StitchesnFluff

    StitchesnFluff Funster

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    Thank you, great information
     
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  3. Don Quixote

    Don Quixote Funster

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    Martin, thank you for this. I hope it will give members a better understanding of solar.

    Over the same period in the same place ( parked a few meters away from you ) I produced 28 amps: 1 x 120watts panel / MPPT controller and 3 x 110 amp batteries.
    On Monday night did not use TV, but did charge phones x 2 and laptop as well as running iBoost. Tuesday night had everything on drawing 5 amps per hour for 5 hours around 5pm on.
    This morning batteries reading 12.98volts and solar only producing 2.8 watts ( this is peak ) as will go down to .5amp at times. So in my case if I'm lucky by teatime today I might have replaced 20 amps from my 1 x solar panel. First thing I will do on returning home later this year is add another panel to the MH.
    In your case with so much power being produced your batteries will be fully charged, but in my case they will only be "topping up" as cannot produce enough solar amps to replace what I take out unless we get another day like Tuesday were I was getting 7.5 amps for 4/5 hours at peak and I might be lucky.

    Will report back here how batteries are at end of the week here.
     
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  4. DP_JAY

    DP_JAY Funster Life Member

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    We were at Southport last weekend
    The weather was mixed (sunshine&showers ) We have 160w of panels which produced between 0 & 3.5 amps ( depending on weather & demand ). Every day the batteries reached 14.2v before evening & usually by lunchtime
     
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  5. jac-in-a-box

    jac-in-a-box Read Only Funster

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    I'm close to installing my pair of 150w panels and will be naturally curious to see what I can make per day.

    I don't think my controller has the facility to tell me what I make in a 24hr period, just an instaneous reading; do you get your daily output from your controller, or is the 90ah recorded on something else? I'm guessing the "solar computer thingy" ?
    Another toy to buy perhaps!

    Be good if you could please provide a little more info' Martin:)

    Thanks, David
     
  6. Don Quixote

    Don Quixote Funster

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    I fitted a Victron BMV-600. This tells me everything I need to know about my system.

    This shows:

    Battery voltage: this readout is useful to make a rough estimation of the battery’s state-of-charge ( battery voltage is another subject ). A 12 V battery is considered empty when it cannot maintain a voltage of 10.5 V under load conditions. Excessive voltage drops for a charged battery when under heavy load can also indicate that the battery capacity is insufficient. A battery that is discharged to 12.2volts or less is on the way to being destroyed beyond the point where it WILL NOT recover and hold it's charge. Some people are lucky and with a "smart charger" can recover the battery before damage is permanent, but remember discharge a battery down to 12.2volts to many times and it is DEAD.
    Current: this represents the actual current flowing in amps to or out of the battery ( works with CE ). Allows me to see what the B2B or solar charger is giving me amp wise into the batteries.
    CE: Consumed Energy: this displays the amount of AH consumed from the battery/ batteries. A fully charged battery sets this readout to 0.0 Ah (synchronized system). If a current of 12 A is drawn from the battery for a period of 3hours, this readout will show –36.0 Ah. I know at the end of the day what I have taken out of the batteries. The next day when solar is working hard I can see the amps taken out reducing to 0.0 on a good day.
    SOC: state-of-charge: this is the best way to monitor the actual state of the battery. This readout represents the current amount of energy left in the battery. A fully charged battery will be indicated by a value of 100.0%. A fully discharged battery will be indicated by a value of 0.0%.
    TTG: Time-to-go: this is an estimation of how long the battery can support the present load; until it needs recharging.

    The CE is the one I watch as this tells me what is drawing the amps in the MH. I know now exactly what amps each bit of kit draws in my MH.
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2015
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  7. funflair

    funflair Funster Life Member

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    Hi David @jac-in-a-box i think John's @Don Quixote system is quite a bit more sophisticated than ours.

    Ours is a Votronic solar computer and simply plugs into the Votronic regulator with a cat5 type plug, it tells you volts on the battery it is connected to amps that the regulator is putting in and it keep a running total of amp hours and KW hours, if you want a 24 hour period you just remember or write down the reading.

    I will post our next 24 hour period in the morning but it will be considerably less as the sun has been a bit shy today at Stratford, the batteries are still full but the difference will be that the fridge has done more time on gas.

    Martin
     
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  8. SMB

    SMB Funster

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    I'm interested about the excess power being used to power the fridge and I'm wondering if I could do the same with my system. I have 230w of solar panels, 4 x 110A batteries and the Ctek smart pass / dual B2B charger fitted, anyone out there help?
     
  9. tonyidle

    tonyidle Funster

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    Bear in mind when reading voltages the batteries are on charge. Battery voltage is only indicative of charge level when the battery has been disconnected (from everything) and allowed to settle for a hour or so. A 12v lead-acid battery can never attain a terminal voltage (off charge) of over 13 volts - it will in fact fully charged be under 13v.

    Impressive stuff nevertheless - just shows what a decent solar set-up is capable of. :)
     
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  10. funflair

    funflair Funster Life Member

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    I know @Techno100 built himself something to do this but he is a bit too clever for me, I just bought a Solar controller with the AES function built into it and then just used a diode to make it switch on the alternator D+ terminal.

    Martin
     
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  11. SMB

    SMB Funster

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    I will have to look into it as it would be handy when I use aires and the less time I spend trying to work out how to use the GPL pumps the better, thanks Martin (y)
     
  12. WillH

    WillH Funster

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    I recently posted that we managed 12 days on solar with a 100 watt panel and a 110 Ah battery but we had the fridge on gas. Fridge only, a 6 kg bottle can last up to four weeks.
     
  13. voyagerstan

    voyagerstan Read Only Funster

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    :rolleyes:All this watching , to much spare time on your hands . :cool:StanStan
     
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  14. Don Quixote

    Don Quixote Funster

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    What you failed to add was what you were / are running from the 110amp battery. I have no doubt with the setup you have that 12 days would be fine, however I doubt that you were / are running TV, Sat dish, Sky Box, iBoost system, charging phone or phones, charging laptop or iPad, running the water pump for shower every night for 2 people and having the heating on...... etc etc.
    The reason I put it this way is because these days, that is what many MH owners have running for 5/6 hours every night. There is NO WAY a 110amp hour battery WILL cover this PERIOD.
     
  15. Techno

    Techno Funster Life Member

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  16. Don Quixote

    Don Quixote Funster

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    Your fridge takes power from your battery, all be it less than an amp until you open the door when the light comes on ( around 1amp ), but still drains the power.
     
  17. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    i run 6x 80wt panels through two pwm regs . have for years , to 600amp of batteries .
    in winter powers my 240v fridge in the truck. or a under counter fridge freezer . depends which i take . plus tv computers etc through an inverter .
    in summer i run an extension lead into the house run a under counter fridge and a tall freezer
    plus do other things with the leccy like hoover or computer.
    in late sept oct . i dont power the house . just let it look after the truck leisure side .
    i cant say what it puts in or takes out . but works . as been for about 12 years now .
    like stan says too busy to sit watching meters .
     
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  18. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    i forgot to add i go south to spainor maroc in winter. and use a twintub washing machine through the inverter while away as well.
    i think using the truck solar in the house saves about 40p a day.in summer .
     
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  19. jac-in-a-box

    jac-in-a-box Read Only Funster

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    Don Q and funflair, Martin; thanks for your replies. Having a look at the same and similar items that Don Q use's - bit over my head without doing some more homework. Probably best to get my panels set-up and go from there.

    My controller, the same as Techno Andy use's, has a cat5 / RJ socket, but sadly no indication in the instructions for its use....Andy?
     
  20. funflair

    funflair Funster Life Member

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    OK guys, next update for 24 hour period ending Thursday morning.

    Yesterday was not so sunny but we managed 54ah, OK it's well down on the nice sunny days 90ah but still enough to keep our batteries full and a bit left over. Batteries last night at 11:30 were 13 volts (GEL batteries).

    Martin
     
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