Author Topic: Lots of questions about Solar Systems  (Read 3383 times)

dirtpoor

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Lots of questions about Solar Systems
« on: December 22, 2013, 09:10:39 PM »
Hello,

I will be moving to Georgia next year and I will be installing a Solar System.  Georgia Power Company is the electrical provider and encourages Solar Systems as well as pays for electricity being pumped into the grid and also gives you a tax credit of $10k and some change.  That being said, I have talked to a Solar Equipment supplier (but I forgot which one) and the equipment for a 900 watt system would run almost $10k but I can get the individual components for less on Amazon etc.

So here goes:

The roof on the house is East/West, not South.  Should I build a platform on the South of the house in which to place my Solar Panels?

Do I need to have a Surveyer(sp?) come out and do a Solar Survey?  I saw that on one of the eleventy-billion YouTube videos I have watched on the subject.

Can I tie into the grid in a way that when the power goes out everywhere else, I can still have power?

How many batteries would be needed for a system this size?

Do I tie in the Panels - to + or should I do positive to positive and negative to negative?

As best as I can tell from all the videos, the system should be set-up from Panels to Cut-Off to Batteries to Inverter (I would like to have just one as opposed to several) to the Grid/Meter?

Sorry for all the questions, I just don't want to mess everything up.

dirtpoor

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Re: Lots of questions about Solar Systems
« Reply #1 on: December 22, 2013, 09:22:48 PM »
Forgot to mention, I plan on 100 Watt Monocrystaline Panels.

SeanB

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Re: Lots of questions about Solar Systems
« Reply #2 on: December 22, 2013, 11:51:42 PM »
Panels typically connect plus to minus till you get to the correct voltage which the grid tie inverter can accept. Having an East/West roof just means you must choose whether you want grid tie in the mornings till the roof is shaded or in the afternoon after the side is in full sun. There will be a loss but the system will either generate power earlier or later depending on the side, basically while the sun is visible in that position. Depends on the roof slope as to where those cut off points is, look at your existing roof and see at what time each side is in shade.

Probably easiest is to go grid tie and later on add extra panels and batteries separately with an inverter, or use the battery to only power the lighting load using low voltage LED units.

dirtpoor

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Re: Lots of questions about Solar Systems
« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2013, 02:06:34 PM »
Thank you Sean.  I guess in theory, I could set up one string on the East side, and another string on the West side to capture morning and afternoon sun correct?  I could buy two Inverters, one for each side, and 2 Charge Controllers and tie them both in at the battery bank?

I did some more YouTubing last night and it looks as though the Inverters put the energy back into the home through the wall plug.  I had no idea that energy could be put INTO the house through a typical outlet, so maybe no need to tie into the Circuit Board?

SeanB

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Re: Lots of questions about Solar Systems
« Reply #4 on: December 23, 2013, 02:56:52 PM »
No, a grid tie inverter has to be wired in to the breaker panel, as it is a source of power supply. You cannot plug it in to an outlet. Having panels on each side will work, you just treat them as independant systems and that is all.

dirtpoor

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Re: Lots of questions about Solar Systems
« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2013, 03:23:24 PM »
Thank you.  I thought it was weird that they did that because it goes against everything I know about electricity which is admittedly not much :)

Do you mind telling me the sequence of what goes where and when, i.e., Solar Panels to Inverter to.....

Sorry I have so many questions, there is just so much to learn.

dirtpoor

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Re: Lots of questions about Solar Systems
« Reply #6 on: December 23, 2013, 07:07:19 PM »
I found this product:

http://www.wholesalesolar.com/inverter-system/outback-power-flexPower-solar-power-center-fp1-4.html

It's pricey, however, it is everything in one, Inverter, Charge Controller etc.  I spoke to a technician at the company and I can use the Mono Panels instead of the Poly Panels that come in the package, and also set up my own Battery Bank using deep cycle marine batteries.  This does everything I want and is simple and easy to use.