best home made inverter enclosures

rollandelliottrollandelliott Solar Expert Posts: 755 ✭✭
I spoke with SMA and they told me to NOT place their sunny boy inverters facing south or West because the hot sun would make them deteriorate over time.
Unfortunatley my electrical panel is on the west side of my home and I 'm wondering what kind of enclosure people make to shade the unit?
obviosuly it can't be totally enclosed because it needs to be ventilated.

I was just thinking of a over hang, made out of roofing sheet metal.

any other ideas?

Comments

  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 7,249 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: best home made inverter enclosures

    I'd think a simple window awning , or a bush in the right spot, would be fine.
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  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: best home made inverter enclosures

    Putting it inside the house would be favourite. :cool:
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators Posts: 26,758 admin
    Re: best home made inverter enclosures

    Reducing temperature is a win... For every 10C (18F) reduction, the life of your electronics will be doubled.

    Reduce by 20C, life will be 2*2=4x longer, etc.... (of course, this will be over actual time--if inverter is "hot" 10 hours per day, a reduction of 10C would add 10 Hours for every day it is reduced).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • SevenSeven Solar Expert Posts: 292 ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: best home made inverter enclosures

    Put up some lattice and let vines grow on it. Make sure it is a couple of feet out. That is my project next weekend for my ac unit.
  • rollandelliottrollandelliott Solar Expert Posts: 755 ✭✭
    Re: best home made inverter enclosures

    I could put it in my home, but just afraid it will hum too much and act like a mini furnace? how hot do these things get?

    I guess you dont' need to vent to the outside, but would it be a good idea to?
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators Posts: 26,758 admin
    Re: best home made inverter enclosures

    I have a 3.3 kW rated GT Inverter (3.5kW array) mounted in my insulated/shaded garage--If 96% efficient inverter:
    • 3.5 kW * 0.04 loss = 140 watts...
    The heat sink will feel pretty warm to my hand--but it in no way seems to heat the garage. About as much power as the old 150 watt reading lamps. (little more than a pair of 60 watt ceiling lamps in the typical fixture).

    140 watts is not a lot of heat (typical plug-in heater is around 1,000-1,500 watts or so)...

    A couple people that have "hot" garages have put a small fan on a lamp timer to blow at the inverters on hot days. The little breeze really seems to drop their temperatures.

    -Bill

    PS: I should add that I have never heard a hum (bolted outside my dining room wall). Right now, could not hum anyway--Failed a couple days ago and waiting replacement.
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • solarvicsolarvic Solar Expert Posts: 1,041 ✭✭✭
    Re: best home made inverter enclosures
    I could put it in my home, but just afraid it will hum too much and act like a mini furnace? how hot do these things get?

    I guess you dont' need to vent to the outside, but would it be a good idea to?

    I plan on connecting my inverters in my utility room. I figure any heat the inverters put off will be utilized by my geo spring waterheater. Yhey should complment each other. :Dsolarvic:D
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