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Yes I watched the installer program the inverter & he force charged the batteries from the mains to make sure everything worked. Therefore I do know how to do it.

HOWEVER... on checking the FIT meter while charging I saw it had been fooled into thinking that the energy had come from the PV which of course would pay out to me. (when I showed him this he realised I was right, not something he had ever thought about. I reassured him that I would never do that... & haven't!)

Therefore I don't feel comfortable with force charging as I would be paid for something I haven't generated legally!
intereting issue, not suggesting you con your energy company as no doubt they will catch on but are you sure this is your import meter? I have a meter installed bt the company who done the solar, they told me it would act as an export meter but it does not as it counts electric that goes to the house so is basically a random number, it does not matter for me as my SMETS2 meter does the export as it should.

If your meter is going that wrong I would be interested in how it is wired, general rule of thumb is it goes fuse then meter then either a consumer unit or Henley blocks to split to two consumer units, with that in mind the meter would not be affected by any purchase other than see it as normal usage,

if you can use purchasing my opinion is solar, battery and time of use charging is the real game changer.
 

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Yes, when the installer force charged, I went out to the Solar meter & watched the display counting upwards, exactly as it does with energy from the panels. This meter provides the readings that British Gas pays my FIT against.

I am awaiting a Smart meter install, meantime here is the wiring arrangement inside my meter box....

129700
 

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Yes, when the installer force charged, I went out to the Solar meter & watched the display counting upwards, exactly as it does with energy from the panels. This meter provides the readings that British Gas pays my FIT against.

I am awaiting a Smart meter install, meantime here is the wiring arrangement inside my meter box....
If your solar generation meter is registering your battery charging as if your solar panels are generating then something isn't connected up correctly.
I'm not an electrician but picture of your meter doesn't look like it has the solar generation meter in there, just your import meter.
 

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I guess my earlier image was unclear as only the main input meter was visible - solar generation meter is under the white flap in that image. See below:
129704
 

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Discussion Starter #85
I have only been on Agile for a month so I do not know how it will pan out in winter but for me I can't see how anyone could lose out by switching to Agile unless you have a high use between 4pm & 7pm. Outside those times the rate on Agile seems to be always less than the day rate on Go of 14p (YYMV). If you have anything that using a significant amout of electricity outside the peak then I find it difficult to see how Agile would not be cheaper.

I have a hot tub that is on 24/7 that takes around 10kWh a day but I turn it off between 4pm and 7pm so all of that outside peak. Switching to Agile now means our bill will be less than halved in winter. In summer it makes less of a difference because a lot of that 10kWh is from solar but even then, what we do buy from the grid is halved.

We were considering a battery but unless we can charge from the grid in winter there seems little point. I am hoping that we can find a battery solution that means we charge only from solar in summer and can also charge from Agile cheap rates overnight in winter.
 

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I guess my earlier image was unclear as only the main input meter was visible - solar generation meter is under the white flap in that image. See below:
View attachment 129704
I think this is wrong, not an electrician but if I am not mistaken any electric that passes through that consumer unit would be counted so like you said when you charge the battery. Effectively the CU sinply provides lots of inputs and outputs of electric so those 2 wires I would assume one goes to your inverter and one to those Henley blocks.

I think when they installed it they did not consider that a battery could be charged from the grid, on affect they need a different meter that only reads one direction, it would need to be somewhere on a wire not in the CU as there it would not know sbput direction or electric flow.

what I do not know is if you get a smart meter installed whether FIT either automatically (doubt it as DCC would need to be involved and they cannot even get import right) or whether you can use the meter but bear in mind that would be a count if feed in not generation so guess that is not the number you want to be submitting (I don’t have FIT myself)

If you do need to submit the generation number i Believe you are already submitting the wrong number, do you have a single inverter that your solar panels and battery are connected to? or do you have a seperate inverter for each, the reason I ask is I cannot see a third cable out of that consumer unit going to the inverter and if there is not an either you have a hybrid inverter or at the end of the cable out of that consumer unit you have another split between the two inverters when you charge the battery from the solar that electric will not be counted by your generation meter there.

one thing that may be happening is your battery inverter is connected directly to your main consumer unit but then I would not expect the meter to count charge as generation.

of course again with me not understanding fit and it could be that the meter is supposed to measure export in which case it is also wrong as it will count all solar the solar that gets as far as that consumer unit which would be before the house takes it.

suggest taking some pictures of the inverters and where the wires go, if it is a single hybrid inverter no need as i already know the problem.
 

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I have only been on Agile for a month so I do not know how it will pan out in winter but for me I can't see how anyone could lose out by switching to Agile unless you have a high use between 4pm & 7pm. Outside those times the rate on Agile seems to be always less than the day rate on Go of 14p (YYMV). If you have anything that using a significant amout of electricity outside the peak then I find it difficult to see how Agile would not be cheaper.

I have a hot tub that is on 24/7 that takes around 10kWh a day but I turn it off between 4pm and 7pm so all of that outside peak. Switching to Agile now means our bill will be less than halved in winter. In summer it makes less of a difference because a lot of that 10kWh is from solar but even then, what we do buy from the grid is halved.

We were considering a battery but unless we can charge from the grid in winter there seems little point. I am hoping that we can find a battery solution that means we charge only from solar in summer and can also charge from Agile cheap rates overnight in winter.
sorry if I have already had this conversation, there are various threads I am talking on about this, what is the lockdown doing to people like me who never used to respond ey!

most batteries (or to be factually correct, inverters) support charging from the grid, my Pylontechs connected to my Solis Hybrid Inverter does it but the magic ingredient in my mind is either it being built in to manage buying and selling or having a third party device to do it, this is what I do using A Pi and some Python code to update over rs485 and some C sharp code I use for my home automation to trigger the forced charge (and discharge) based on agile rates and also solar prediction for the next day. I am thinking about looking into other brands and creating some more generic code for other devices to make public but don’t have the time at the moment.
 

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Discussion Starter #88
Interesting stuff... I have a server that is always on at home, a Vera home automation controller, Hive Smart Heating, Open Energy Monitor and several Amazon Echo Dots. At the moment I don't do as much with it as I'd like. I have set up a MQTT broker on the server so that I have a central depository for HA info.

I have used Node-Red to collect my solar PV state from my solarEdge inverter and put that onto MQTT - updated ever minute.

I use Node-Red to collect the Agile rates from Octopus daily and it then also updates MQTT with the current rate at any point in time... updated every 30 mins.

I have a 40A switch controlling my hot tub that is Z-wave and connected to the Vera controller. This switch is controlled by Node-Red by looking at the current Agile rate and if above a certain threshold it turns off the switch. It also updates the switch state on MQTT. This ensures that the tub never operates during peak times.

I have Node-Red flow that is generic that can be called from other flows to set the Hive multi-colour light in the lounge. I can call this to set a colour and/or brightness depending on the solar PV state... green for exporting, red for importing etc. It also updates MQTT with the light state when it changes. This worked very well except that it is in the lounge so not particularly useful so I have disabled this for now.

As you can see, MQTT is the hub. It means that whatever I add I have access to all the important info via MQTT.

Once I get the car this will be easy to extend to allow for charging only at cheap rates or when solar has sufficient spare capacity. I might be able to extend it to control battery charging if I get a battery.

If there is a better thread to be discussing this stuff could you post the link... ta :)
 

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Interesting stuff... I have a server that is always on at home, a Vera home automation controller, Hive Smart Heating, Open Energy Monitor and several Amazon Echo Dots. At the moment I don't do as much with it as I'd like. I have set up a MQTT broker on the server so that I have a central depository for HA info.

I have used Node-Red to collect my solar PV state from my solarEdge inverter and put that onto MQTT - updated ever minute.

I use Node-Red to collect the Agile rates from Octopus daily and it then also updates MQTT with the current rate at any point in time... updated every 30 mins.

I have a 40A switch controlling my hot tub that is Z-wave and connected to the Vera controller. This switch is controlled by Node-Red by looking at the current Agile rate and if above a certain threshold it turns off the switch. It also updates the switch state on MQTT. This ensures that the tub never operates during peak times.

I have Node-Red flow that is generic that can be called from other flows to set the Hive multi-colour light in the lounge. I can call this to set a colour and/or brightness depending on the solar PV state... green for exporting, red for importing etc. It also updates MQTT with the light state when it changes. This worked very well except that it is in the lounge so not particularly useful so I have disabled this for now.

As you can see, MQTT is the hub. It means that whatever I add I have access to all the important info via MQTT.

Once I get the car this will be easy to extend to allow for charging only at cheap rates or when solar has sufficient spare capacity. I might be able to extend it to control battery charging if I get a battery.

If there is a better thread to be discussing this stuff could you post the link... ta :)
sounds like you have all the data you need now you just need to write some logic for it, simplest way would be to use Python and cron on a Linux vm or even pi to run every 5 minutes etc and do things at certain times, for example at 2pm I check the battery charge level, and force a charge, i know you don’t have a battery yet but wanted to show how I think it can be done to make the number slightly better.
 

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......If you do need to submit the generation number i Believe you are already submitting the wrong number, do you have a single inverter that your solar panels and battery are connected to? or do you have a seperate inverter for each, the reason I ask is I cannot see a third cable out of that consumer unit going to the inverter and if there is not an either you have a hybrid inverter or at the end of the cable out of that consumer unit you have another split between the two inverters when you charge the battery from the solar that electric will not be counted by your generation meter there.

one thing that may be happening is your battery inverter is connected directly to your main consumer unit but then I would not expect the meter to count charge as generation.

of course again with me not understanding fit and it could be that the meter is supposed to measure export in which case it is also wrong as it will count all solar the solar that gets as far as that consumer unit which would be before the house takes it.

suggest taking some pictures of the inverters and where the wires go, if it is a single hybrid inverter no need as i already know the problem.
In answering these observations:

We are not submitting the wrong number because I can see exactly what the panels generate on a separate app & the total count on the meter equals that on the app since installation (& daily whenever I've taken readings to check).

When a force charge took place, the incoming supply meter registered usage & the solar meter also showed a corresponding increase (slightly less as some of the supply is used in the inverter process).

As the readings from the solar meter are those submitted by me quarterly for the FIT (annually verified by British Gas) then any increase from force charging would be indistinguishable from actual solar generation that's why I will not do it (the FIT measures generation, battery storage itself has no impact).

Yes, the inverter is an X-Hybrid but not connected to the main house consumer unit (that is in a separate place inside a cupboard fed from the main incoming supply/meter whereas the inverter in the garage is connected to the small consumer unit shown in the photos, after the main incoming supply meter).

This solar meter does not measure export, merely generation (that is why the arbitrary '50% rule' is used so we are effectively paid 1.5x what we generate) & even when Octopus eventually install our smart meters I am led to believe the two will remain disconnected - Octopus supplying & metering our energy, British Gas asking for separate readings from the solar FIT meter.
 

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This solar meter does not measure export, merely generation (that is why the arbitrary '50% rule' is used so we are effectively paid 1.5x what we generate) & even when Octopus eventually install our smart meters I am led to believe the two will remain disconnected - Octopus supplying & metering our energy, British Gas asking for separate readings from the solar FIT meter.
FIT can be registered and paid by any company authorised to do so. Many people probably chose the elecy supplier they happened to be with when they got solar and most will have moved to other suppliers, but the FIT remains and is paid by the original supplier. I was originally with EDF 5+ years ago and they are great at paying within days of FIT submission. Move to several other suppliers over the years too, but now with Octopus Agile. More than halved our import when we got solar and halved again when we got Agile beginning of March, but do have a Powerwall2 installed just before Xmas, along with a Zappi, but still waiting for Tesla M3P.
 

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In answering these observations:

We are not submitting the wrong number because I can see exactly what the panels generate on a separate app & the total count on the meter equals that on the app since installation (& daily whenever I've taken readings to check).

When a force charge took place, the incoming supply meter registered usage & the solar meter also showed a corresponding increase (slightly less as some of the supply is used in the inverter process).

As the readings from the solar meter are those submitted by me quarterly for the FIT (annually verified by British Gas) then any increase from force charging would be indistinguishable from actual solar generation that's why I will not do it (the FIT measures generation, battery storage itself has no impact).

Yes, the inverter is an X-Hybrid but not connected to the main house consumer unit (that is in a separate place inside a cupboard fed from the main incoming supply/meter whereas the inverter in the garage is connected to the small consumer unit shown in the photos, after the main incoming supply meter).

This solar meter does not measure export, merely generation (that is why the arbitrary '50% rule' is used so we are effectively paid 1.5x what we generate) & even when Octopus eventually install our smart meters I am led to believe the two will remain disconnected - Octopus supplying & metering our energy, British Gas asking for separate readings from the solar FIT meter.
that is interesting as the meter would never see the electric that is going into the batteries, the reason it does not connect to your main consumer unit is the basic principle of electric is that it finds the closest place it is needed so that would be your house.

imwould be contacting the company who installed your system and getting them to sort it, if you cannot use forced charge you are missing out on more flexibility with time of use or even economy 7 type tariffs in the winter.
 

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imwould be contacting the company who installed your system and getting them to sort it, if you cannot use forced charge you are missing out on more flexibility with time of use or even economy 7 type tariffs in the winter.
Yep, if you can't charge the battery from the grid that could be an issue in the future if you switch to Agile or Go.
I'd want it wired correctly.
 

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Thanks for the replies, I'll look into it a) when someone is able to install the smart meter b) when an electrician is allowed to install a car charger.
 

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Thanks for the replies, I'll look into it a) when someone is able to install the smart meter b) when an electrician is allowed to install a car charger.
When you get a charger installed you will need to think about how to avoid draining your hoke battery, easiest way to do this is use the discharge lock function, basically the opposite to forced charge, say that it should not drain for certsin hours, alternatively just set the car to charge when the battery is either empty or you don’t care if it empties it.
 

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We currently charge (weatherproof Socket, using Tesla mains lead 10A 9-10miles/hour) when the battery is approaching full & solar is generating around 2500W so the battery drain is negligible/zero or still slowly filling when solar is at its highest input level. No issues for now but need to decide what is best for winter/end of lockdown.
 
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