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  #1  
Old 03-02-2015, 05:37 AM
Felineman Felineman is offline
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Default Solar for dummies,idiots and morons

OK I just can't get my head around watts W/H amps and other terms. I've tries to read everything I can but the actually numbers mean nothing to me. I have a 14 inch laptop that the battery is dead so I have to run off charger. Charger says input 100-240V~1.5A 50/60Hz output 19V 3.95A. I have a tablet that the charger says input 100-240V 0.3A 50/60Hz output 5V 2500mA. I need a min of 7 lights inside and want 2 outside lights. My floor plans is here: http://postimg.org/image/m3qcaipgt/ Fridge and freezer is propane, and stove is wood. I have tickle charger panels for truck,quad and skidoo. That it nothing else except for insta-hot water tank but it takes batteries. I recharge them with solar garden lights. So I need my usage and how many panels,batteries,inverters,controllers, blah blah blah. Thanks in advance.

Hopefully I can figure out what I need, I know about maintenance and disconnecting system parts, just can't figure out what my needs are from my lights a electronics.

EDIT: Laptop runs 24/7 tablet same lights will be used approx 3 lights 6-8 hrs a day with others maybe 1 hr max per day. Also need high luminous low power lights that are long life but low cost, but will probably just use 40-60 watt 120V.
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  #2  
Old 03-02-2015, 11:17 AM
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First thing.. Welcome! Now all we need to do is find how much sun ya have to work with..

http://www.gaisma.com/en/

Find your exact area and see how much sun you have in Dec./Jan. If you can get it to work in those months, you should be good to go year round..
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  #3  
Old 03-02-2015, 02:58 PM
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I'm in Northern Ontario so its about 55 hours in dec if that helps.
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Old 03-02-2015, 04:03 PM
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55 hrs..? I don't understand..

At Sudbury it's 1.15 hrs in Dec. and 1.43 hrs. in Jan. per day..
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  #5  
Old 03-02-2015, 04:26 PM
Felineman Felineman is offline
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55 hours for all of December or 1.7 per day so go even lower say 1.5 per day just as a min base line. Now, how do I find out how much power I use from those 2 electronics and the lights.

Last edited by 12vman; 03-02-2015 at 05:53 PM.
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Old 03-02-2015, 08:47 PM
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Start measuring your devices.

Spend some money to find out exactly what you are using by getting one of these (or something similar) :
http://www.amazon.com/P3-P4400-Elect..._bs_14244481_1

Most devices will have the electric usage on it but may not be accurate.
Example: Your laptop power supply may require 1.5 amps. AC but could be using .9 amps.

Calculate your usage. http://www.solar-electric.com/solar/calc/
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  #7  
Old 03-02-2015, 09:36 PM
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Due to the new smart meter crap in Ontario you can no longer buy them here. Can't even have them shipped over border. So you can't prove that your using what they say you are. They even charge you for line lose. Hydro One is a bunch of robbing SOB's. But I'll try to do the math I just don't understand it very well.
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Old 03-02-2015, 10:09 PM
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You are on the right track anyway.
Calculate the amount used, and the hours. I'd do a weeks worth.
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Old 03-02-2015, 10:33 PM
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You might be able to calculate from previous electric bills.
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  #10  
Old 03-02-2015, 11:08 PM
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I have 2 fridges 2 freezers 3 tv's modems cable boxes lights stove and so many other things here running that I wouldn't know what to delete from my current bill and hydro is included in my rent so I don't even get to see bill. Can anyone help me figure out how much laptop and tablet use I can do lights.
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Old 03-02-2015, 11:35 PM
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#1 - Laptop Charger says input 100-240V~1.5A 50/60Hz output 19V 3.95A.

#2 - I have a tablet that the charger says input 100-240V 0.3A 50/60Hz output 5V 2500mA. Laptop runs 24/7 tablet same. ^

#3 - I need a min of 7 lights inside and want 2 outside lights. (Lights will be used approx 3 lights 6-8 hrs a day with others maybe 1 hr max per day. Will probably just use 40-60 watt 120V)

Not a lot of information to go on but here goes. I'll figure a 12 volt D.C. system, using an inverter for simplicity reasons..

*An inverter requires ~10 amps @ 12 volts D.C to produce 120 watts @ 120 volts A.C. (Not including internal inverter losses)* I'll round up here and there to cover these losses..

#1 - 1.5 amps.. Round to 2.. 24 hrs.. 48 aHrs..

#2 - .3 amps.. Round to .4.. 24 hrs.. 9.6 aHrs..

#3 - 3 - *40 watt lights.. 120 watts.. X10 through an inverter.. 120 watts.. 10 amps.. X7 hrs.. 70 aHrs..
^
^ 4 - *40 watt lights.. 160 watts.. X10 through an inverter.. 160 watts.. 13.4 amps.. X1 hr.. 13.4 aHrs.. (*7 lights total*) 40 watt conservative figure used..

#1- 48 aHr
#2 - 9.6 aHrs
#3 - *83.4 aHrs. (Figuring standard incandescent bulbs) Alternatives would save a lot here..

141 aHr or *1,692 watts consumed @ 12 v.d.c. in a 24 hr. period..

Knowing your short charge time during the winter, you'll need about the same amount of panel (*in wattage) to cover your needs, and maybe a little more, considering the 20% losses in the battery.. (2K)

You would need ~564 aHr. reserve total in battery.. (~25% discharge rate)
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Old 03-03-2015, 12:33 AM
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OK thank you but one last question converting to watts as all Canadian systems are in watts. and to make sure I read this right thats for a MAX of 25% discharge? What percentage of battery discharge is best for longest battery life. And would it be smart to double my system in case of extra usage? Double battery banks?
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Old 03-03-2015, 12:46 AM
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Basically, if you have four 125AH batteries in parallel you would have 125AH available for use based on no more then 25% discharge.
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Old 03-03-2015, 01:35 AM
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25% discharge is the extreme maximum that you should discharge a battery to get any decent life out of it. If you double your reserve, you'll half your discharge rate. (12.5%)

This makes a battery last longer but there's a fine line to consider. If your battery gets too big, your panels won't boil them enough to keep the electrolyte mixed during a charge period. Now you'll need to equalize, or over voltage your battery for a length of time to make them boil to mix things up. This can cause issues to voltage sensitive items connected to the battery..

10-15% discharge seems to work the best for me. I see bubbles in the cells just about every charge period or at least 2 times a week..

http://batteryuniversity.com/learn/a...surface_charge
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  #15  
Old 03-03-2015, 01:46 AM
Felineman Felineman is offline
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OK so what Wattage should I aim for with regards to panels batteries inverter charge controller battery monitor and wire gauge. Or would you suggest a piece by piece system? If I get panel and battery wattage and AH then I should be able to piece together a system of the best equipment for the performance and price.

Sorry for being such a moron when it comes to the moth behind the system, I am capable of installing it just the amp to watts and trying to figure out consumption and charge rates is beyond me. I'm more a hands on construction type person.
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Old 03-03-2015, 08:32 AM
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Using 12vman's calculations of 1692watts divided by 1.5 hours of sun would be 1128watts of solar panels needed. That is twice as much solar as I have but way less then half the hours of sunlight I get in the winter.

Even right now we get 11 hours of sunlight daily.
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  #17  
Old 03-03-2015, 07:47 PM
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TY so a 1500 watts system with say 2000 AH in batteries should do what I want. Next question for anyone in Ontario, any companies I should stay away from, I'll be building it from parts as its cheaper and you get to pick the better quality parts.
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Old 03-31-2015, 04:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Felineman View Post
TY so a 1500 watts system with say 2000 AH in batteries should do what I want. Next question for anyone in Ontario, any companies I should stay away from, I'll be building it from parts as its cheaper and you get to pick the better quality parts.
Your battery bank would be too far oversized to properly charge. Lead Acid batteries should be charged between C/12 and C/8 with C/10 usually being about ideal. C = AH capacity. 1500W array / 14.4V (nominal 12V) = 125A using an MPPT controller. So a 2000AH battery charge by that would be C/16. You should limit you battery bank to around 1250AH.

Actually a better suggestion would be to go to a 24 or 48v system to cut down on parralleled batteries. That would also allow for smaller wire sizes and number of charge controllers. 125A is going to require 2 expensive controllers. By increasing to 24 or 48v you cut the amperage down to 62.5 or 31.25A so only 1 controller would be needed. Battery bank would also go down in AH with the increased voltage.

WWW
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  #19  
Old 03-31-2015, 09:19 PM
Felineman Felineman is offline
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Completely lost em there, as I said morons dumbies and retards, I have no clue when it comes to numbers unless your talking construction or mechanics. 2000 watt system what do I need for daily use of 1500 watts per hour and a 3 day battery bank? panels batteries chargers inverters complete system I don't want a crap system so if must best of each no matter what brand name, I'd rather pay before then many times after fixing the stupid thing. Please keep in mind I'm in Canada for parts.
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