Speak EV - Electric Car Forums banner

1 - 20 of 36 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,999 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,

I'm strongly considering home solar and probably looking at going down the DIY route unless someone can convince me otherwise.

I got a quote from Ikea for a 3.8KWp system at around £6k which seems quite expensive.

Some quick research and maths shows me that I can purchase 30* CSUN 250w panels and TWO 4KW Goodwe inverters giving me dual 3.25KW (7.5KW total) solar for less than the cost of the Hanergy offering

My roof is a typical apex style at about 40degrees pitch, no shading other than chimney. Half faces south west and half north east. After seeing @Kevin Sharpe 's results with non optimal solar I'm going to follow the same path and use the north east roof too.

I built my own EV - I'm not averse to going down the DIY route.

What are peoples thoughts on this before I go and blow ~£6k on parts!? I have assumed that there are no other major components other than the Inverter and panels?

The key aim of this is to reduce footprint and eventually be able to drive the car using 100% renewables.

Also considering some kind of battery storage system but have read that storing excess energy as usable hot water is a good way to deal with excess energy.

P.S. relatively new to the solar side of things so any pointers on places to read up would be appreciated.

Cheers,

Mike
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,579 Posts
I think it's do-able. You'd need to check out the legislation about connecting your system to the mains. You need to think about whether you're happy to forgo the feed in tariff – to qualify the installation has to be done by an MCS registered contractor (or go and get yourself MCS accredited first)! Even if you do a lot of the work yourself I'd expect there's some requirement to involve an electrician.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
456 Posts
I have 1kw DIY system with 48v 88ah storage. Used to charge my Aixam Mega City from it. You are not eligible for the fit tariff unless MCS approved electrician didn't check the system. Got few quotes starting at £300 for certification. Not worth for me as I'm renting property. The total money spend ~£1k. The most expensive is inverter. I have grid tied, but also the other one is connected to the battery system all together with charge controller. I can switch when I want between them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,106 Posts
IIRC an MCS supplier must supply and install and all the equipment must also be MCS approved. I don't think you can supply/install DIY and then just get an MCS inspection.

I can't possibly try to talk you out of it. If you have the cash then it is a no brainer IMO.

However, I would caution against DIY. Not only will you not get any FiT but it is easy to make some very simple mistakes that you might live to regret. IMO the extra costs in using an MCS installer would quickly be recovered by getting the FiT.

If you get a good MCS installer you can still have a major influence on what they install. Discuss the design and options with them and you could end up with a good solution at a good price. We had a bit of a fight with our installer when we wanted a slightly different spec so get some referrals from past customers first.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
456 Posts
Well, as I said, I'm renting the property so why should I leave my installation to someone else? If I'll move the house, I would need to pay for the MCS installer again and also I'm foreigner so for me it's a big no no for paying someone to do same as I would do:) I know more than average person in 12v systems, so I wouldn't leave it for someone else to do it:) for the 220v I'm all in with your opinion:) and yes, grid tied inverter is 220v, but it's just cables from solar panels coming in (mc4 connectors) and 3 pin plug goes out from it:) it's not made in China and doesn't work if disconnected from mains:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,106 Posts
I get the feeling from what you say that you may know about 12V systems but a solar PV System is using high voltage DC & can be easy to get wrong if you don't understand those systems. There is no 3 pin plug. It connects to your consumer unit or cables from the meter. Sounds like you need some help tbh
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
456 Posts
Sorry @Paul_Churchley, but 19v isn't high voltage. For human it's not harmful until 60v I think. Well, as I see you've never seen DIY system (at least from that what you're saying about my system), everything what you've seen is company's placed inverter and probably the panels on the roof. No offence.
You just made me leave my warm bed to make a picture special for you.
It's messy in there. That blue thing screwed to the wall called "mastervolt soladin 600" and it has 3 pin plug plugged into the socked but I won't move the 100kg battery box just to make a picture of connection.
IMG_20141006_191833.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
456 Posts
In my system the only Chinese part is charge controller:) solar inverter made in Netherlands, solar panels are made in Czech Republic, cables schuko from Germany, batteries made in EU, UPS made in USA, 24v inverter made in German y I think:) trying to avoid China made things in the place like pv system, had bad experience with grid tie mppt inverter - was dead after 3 days. Still can't find the time to fix it:D
My batteries are used for recharging all rechargeable things at home but my EV:D also things like printer, router, satellite receiver, aquarium tank and the low consumption devices etc
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
754 Posts
Well, as I said, I'm renting the property so why should I leave my installation to someone else? If I'll move the house, I would need to pay for the MCS installer again and also I'm foreigner so for me it's a big no no for paying someone to do same as I would do:) I know more than average person in 12v systems,
Two further considerations outside of the electrics. If you are renting the property, then there are likely restrictions on what you can do to the roof without landlords consent. Related to the potential damage is the methods you use to fix the solar panels to the structure to prevent them being blown off in a storm and risk to public safety. There are now lots of proprietary systems that vary according to the tile / slates/ fabric so you need to be sure you use the right type. Also planning permission needed for certain areas.
If you have a garden though nothing to stop ground installation or on a pergola perhaps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
754 Posts
Two further considerations outside of the electrics. If you are renting the property, then there are likely restrictions on what you can do to the roof without landlords consent. Related to the potential damage is the methods you use to fix the solar panels to the structure to prevent them being blown off in a storm and risk to public safety. There are now lots of proprietary systems that vary according to the tile / slates/ fabric so you need to be sure you use the right type. Also planning permission needed for certain areas.
If you have a garden though nothing to stop ground installation or on a pergola perhaps.
Just a thought did you say you were in the UK if not then forget the above.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
456 Posts
It's 45 degrees angled on the garage roof, bolted. In the local council I've been told that I need a planning permission only if it's above the garage construction itself. The garage having 50cm high small barrier above the doors so the panels doesn't go above. It's grounded:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
456 Posts
Landlord said he doesn't care until there is no fire risk from instalation. He's 60 years old DIY'er and knows a lot about electrics (from experience I do believe), for him my system looks just fine:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,106 Posts
LOL! 19V Is for just one panel. The voltage sums as you add panels. But if you know enough to do this then you would already know that!

Get help my friend before you kill yourself - please!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
456 Posts
Paul, do you know what does it mean when it's connected in parallel? :) then no matter how many of them, still stays 19v:) of course depending on cable thickness and length :) more longer - loss in voltage:)
I don't understand your mentality in that, looks like if you don't know about something - the others can't do it either. Jealousy about someone being better and having more knowledge or just bad experience from the past?:) I noticed that in some other posts
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
456 Posts
Otherwise I respect you, for me you look person who knows a lot about other stuff. Don't take it personal it's just a discussion and that's the reason why forums are for - to share knowledge and advise, not to stop people from trying and learning
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
853 Posts
I thought the panels were connected in series?

They certainly are on the ones I installed on my fathers narrowboat. 3 panels 100w each providing almost 60v to the solar charger.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
456 Posts
They were connected in series before, when I was mainly used grid tie inverter. Now I'm charging the battery bank and using its power:) there are 4 12v batteries, I have 12v, 24v and 48v outputs there made:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
853 Posts
Sounds good, I would rarther have a stored energy system at home so I can use the energy when I want. How do you control the switching over from stored energy back to grid? It would be a great use for a old leaf battery pack.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
456 Posts
If I need just a bit of power (less than 200w) - I'm using 24v inverter. If I need a lot of it (tested kettle and washing machine at 2.5kw) - I'm using old 3kw 48v HP UPS, probably not the best efficiency as it's old, but works more than good. We had a blackout last summer for more than a day, I was able to get more than 5kwh from the system, but the batteries were topped up by the solar panels while it was daytime. Otherwise I could get just 2kwh in theory without damaging the batteries as them are agm's.
IMG_20141006_222309.jpg You can see disconnected HP UPS with Anderson connector on the left side (takes few seconds to turn on whole system) and also 3pin outputs from the UPS. The UPS system is much cheaper option for home storage systems than modern inverter + ups. I've got mine from eBay for £55. With original batteries it's worth £500-700
 
1 - 20 of 36 Posts
Top