Battery Update & System Check Out

MangasMangas Solar Expert Posts: 537 ✭✭✭✭
Electricians checked us out yesterday. For those that follow stuff like this comments were:

Battery Terminals (3) were cleaned of residual crud with baking soda. Reconfig of the cables they judged unecessary. Based on their experience they felt with proper maintenance, I should get at least 9 years out of them which is what I budgeted for replacement.

Passing along, learned Caterpiller has a new battery out similiar to my Trojans L16s. Cheaper and maybe as good.

Electrolytes were all solidly in the green. I noticed during a couple of high energy use weeks this summer hydrometer was showing in the white range but returned to green for 90% of year.

Generator ran only 49 hours including weekly tests (17 hours) during a 12 month period. So, I figure it ran 32 hours bulking up the batteries when needed, or 16 times at 2 hour run rates in one year. Not too bad.

The large grounding rod ring the built for the system should minimize lightening risk. Course, no gurantees. As You guys pointed out the T Post fence is too close to the array to be grounded. Could move the fence but probably won't. They did insist I cut the agave spikes down if closer than 300 feet to the array field.
Ranch Off Grid System: 2 x pair stacked Schneider XW 5548+ Plus inverters (4), 2 x Schneider MPPT 80-600 Charge Controllers, 2 Xanbus AGS Generator Start and Air Extraction System Controllers, 64 Trojan L16 REB 6v 375 AH Flooded Cel Batteries w/Water Miser Caps, 44 x 185 Sharp Solar Panels, Cummins Onan RS20 KW Propane Water Cooled Genset, ICF House Construction, 2 x High Efficiency Variable Speed three ton Central A/C 220v compressors, 2 x Variable Speed Air Handlers, 2 x HD WiFi HVAC Zoned System Controllers

Comments

  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,311 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Battery Update & System Check Out

    did you decide not to tie the corner fence posts to a ground rod and not run it to the main ground rod via wire underground? you can ground those, but to bond and ground every one of them as i said would be overkill for sure so only the corners for the fencing. also, why cut the agave's tops? if they get hit, who cares?
  • MangasMangas Solar Expert Posts: 537 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Battery Update & System Check Out

    Hi Niel,

    Sorry, they did agree to ground the fence at corners as you suggested. I'll do it before summer.

    On the agaves, I was worried a nearby strike could "smear" near the array? Because I don't understand lightning behavior and worry about my counter measures, I guess they thought I needed some hand holding.
    Ranch Off Grid System: 2 x pair stacked Schneider XW 5548+ Plus inverters (4), 2 x Schneider MPPT 80-600 Charge Controllers, 2 Xanbus AGS Generator Start and Air Extraction System Controllers, 64 Trojan L16 REB 6v 375 AH Flooded Cel Batteries w/Water Miser Caps, 44 x 185 Sharp Solar Panels, Cummins Onan RS20 KW Propane Water Cooled Genset, ICF House Construction, 2 x High Efficiency Variable Speed three ton Central A/C 220v compressors, 2 x Variable Speed Air Handlers, 2 x HD WiFi HVAC Zoned System Controllers
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 7,307 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Battery Update & System Check Out
    Mangas wrote: »
    They did insist I cut the agave spikes down if closer than 300 feet to the array field.

    I'd personally modify that to about 50' from the array. You DONT want the array to be the prime target for a strike. Any "smear" or "splash" from a near strike, your grounded fence should intercept.

    I think you had a driveway higher than your array. Put up a couple of well grounded flagpoles ?
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,311 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Battery Update & System Check Out

    i'll go along with mike's suggestion to keep them cut 50ft away and if they catch fire 50ft is close enough i'd be leary. anyway, you are worried that the agaves will attract the lightning to the pvs and i look at it the other way that it may very well save the pvs from being hit by they themselves taking the hit.
  • crewzercrewzer Registered Users, Solar Expert Posts: 1,832 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Battery Update & System Check Out

    Sounds great... Thx for the update!

    Regards,
    Jim / crewzer
  • MangasMangas Solar Expert Posts: 537 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Battery Update & System Check Out

    Mike, 50 feet really does sound better.
    Ranch Off Grid System: 2 x pair stacked Schneider XW 5548+ Plus inverters (4), 2 x Schneider MPPT 80-600 Charge Controllers, 2 Xanbus AGS Generator Start and Air Extraction System Controllers, 64 Trojan L16 REB 6v 375 AH Flooded Cel Batteries w/Water Miser Caps, 44 x 185 Sharp Solar Panels, Cummins Onan RS20 KW Propane Water Cooled Genset, ICF House Construction, 2 x High Efficiency Variable Speed three ton Central A/C 220v compressors, 2 x Variable Speed Air Handlers, 2 x HD WiFi HVAC Zoned System Controllers
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