Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter

RybrenRybren Solar Expert Posts: 351 ✭✭
I received my Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter the other day. I haven't been able to try it out yet as my 24V system is still in boxes. I still have to wait for the snow to melt and the road to dry out before I can begin work on my new system at the camp.

My first impression of the inverter is that it seems to be very solidly built. However, what really impressed me was the product manual. It is very well written and comprehensive. I can't speak to the accuracy of the information - I don't know enough to raise the BS flag yet, but it does cover a lot of information and answers a lot of questions that newbies like myself tend to ask.

For those of you who are interested, here's the manual. The Specs are here.

I will provide an update once I get everything up and running.

Comments

  • SkippySkippy Solar Expert Posts: 308 ✭✭
    Re: Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter

    Good to hear, I am currently still in the ready - aim phase, but would like to get a 600 watt inverter and a 2,000 watt inverter - both samlex's .. . I found out there is a depot about 2 hours away too, so I can go pick it up.
    2 - 255W + 4 - 285W PV - Tristar 45 MPPT CC / 3 - 110W PV -wired for 36V- 24V Sunsaver MPPT CC / midnite bat. monitor.
    1 KW PSW inverter 24V / 2.5 KW MSW inverter-24V ~ 105 AHR battery.
    3 ton GSHP.- 100 gallon warm water storage / house heat - radiant floor / rad
    9 -220W PV - net meter - Enphase inverters and internet reporting system.
    420 Gallon rain water system for laundry.***  6" Rocket Mass Heater with 10' bed for workshop heat.
    Current project is drawing up plans for a below grade Hobbit / underground home.
  • RybrenRybren Solar Expert Posts: 351 ✭✭
    Re: Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter

    I had a good chat today with Vijay Sharma, the author of the PST-1500-24 manual and the Samlex series of White Papers and Application Notes. He is a very nice fellow and seems to really know his stuff.

    Vijay and I traded a couple of emails today and then he sent me his phone number and said let's chat. I was very impressed.
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter

    rybren,
    it is nice when some take a very active interest in their products and are willing to talk to the masses, but i'm a bit confused as to why you are in communication with him when you did not even initiate your inverter as of yet. why and how did this communication happen?
  • RybrenRybren Solar Expert Posts: 351 ✭✭
    Re: Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter

    Niel,

    I'm new to solar and to wiring in general. My plan is to connect the inverter to an Epanel. Midnite's Epanel install manual calls for a bond between the AC Neutral and ground, and the inverter already has a Neutral-Ground bond (both on the GFCI output and the hardwire output). I knew that I shouldn't have the bond in both the inverter and the Epanel so I contacted Samlex tech support to help me sort out the best way ahead and to ask if was possible to remove the hardwire bond if need be. (it is)

    I could have asked my questions here on the forum, but you likely would have asked me questions that I didn't have the answers to and would have had to contact Samlex anyway, so I went to them first.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,216 admin
    Re: Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter

    Grounding--One of the most complex of electrical design to get "right".

    The ideal place to make the Neutral/Earth bond is in the main panel (one place, as you say). And lift any other Neutral/Earth bonds (some AC inverters, and >~3.5 kW gensets) will make their own Neutral/Earth Bond and when you wire up other power sources (inverters, mains, backup gensets, etc.) it gets messy.

    Sometimes, the only answer is to use a transfer switch that has an additional set of switch contacts for the Neutral... For example, an RV. When plugged in at the park or home, the utility provides the Neutral/Earth Bond. When off grid, then the generator, AC inverter, or local Neutral/Bond connection (behind the AC Transfer Switch) makes the connection (between Neutral and vehicle chassis).

    In some cases, such as most MSW AC Inverters, the MSW inverter will be shorted out if there is a connection between AC "Neutral" and DC battery bank to the same chassis/earth ground (MSW Inverters tend not to have electrically isolated output with respect to the DC input power--so connecting the two "common grounds" together shorts out the MSW Inverter). So a transfer switch would "lift" the Neutral/Earth bond when the MSW inverter is on-line.

    Note that in North America where we use a single pole breaker for 120 VAC circuits, having an Earth bonded AC neutral is part of the safety system.

    A "floating" AC system (even a floating DC System too) should use a double pole breaker so that a short on either leg will trip the power to both legs (for safety)... Basically what happens with 240 VAC power and two pole breakers.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • RybrenRybren Solar Expert Posts: 351 ✭✭
    Re: Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter
    BB. wrote: »
    Grounding--One of the most complex of electrical design to get "right".

    -Bill

    Bill, you left out confusing!

    I do thank you for the additional input. For the time being, my only source of AC will be from the inverter. I had initially thought of setting up the epanel to accept input from my generator and by-pass the inverter (on an as-required basis), but the genny only puts out 1400W, so for the time being I think that I'll leave that for some other time when I get a bigger and better gen.

    So, I can either remove the Neutral/Earth bond in the Inverter and make one in the Epanel, or just leave the inverter as is and not make the bond in the Epanel.

    I spent last night going through the PVGFI thread on the Midnite forum. Now my head is really spinning!

    As always, a big thanks to you and the others on this great forum.

    -Jerry
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,216 admin
    Re: Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter

    Jerry,

    You are very welcome... We try (or are trying???).

    And, yes, as long as you ground in one location--you are fine. Doing it in the Main Panel (where ever that is) is an easy place to see and understand. When you mix conditional grounding in inverters+gensets (based on genset size/inverter type, etc.)... Yep--it is confusing.

    The location of the grounding only matters if there are GFI outlets/breakers involved. The bonding should only take place up stream of the GFI devices. If it takes place down stream or in mulitple areas, you will have a lot more confusion trying to straighten out why which GFI tripped because of what leakage current where.

    That is one reason I am so adamant on having GFI only be on the outlets (or dedicated single branch circuits to outlets going to a sink area, etc.)... If, for example, you have a GFI on the output of your AC Inverter--A trip on a blender next to the sink (a good trip) also trips out all of your lighting in the cabin (a bad trip).

    Systems with multiple sources of power can be very difficult to get "right" and "safe".

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • RybrenRybren Solar Expert Posts: 351 ✭✭
    Re: Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter

    Thanks again Bill,

    I will have to be sure that everything gets done right. I don't need any (more) bad trips! :D

    Jerry
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter

    ok, since you talked to samlex then fill us in on what they said. btw, no, I would not have thrown a bunch of questions at you. sometimes this is so, but I've been steering clear of many grounding questions due to the nec rules that I disagree with some aspects of and the further complexity involved with many other devices being implemented due to those rules.
  • RybrenRybren Solar Expert Posts: 351 ✭✭
    Re: Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter

    Well, the condensed version is that he pretty much said what Bill said in his posts above.

    He did confirm that I could remove the wire making the bond within the inverter, but cautioned that by doing so, I would also remove the bond for the GFCI.
  • silvertopsilvertop Solar Expert Posts: 155 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Samlex PST-1500-24 Inverter

    I think that Samlex/Cotek makes a very good inverter, I run my 1500 24 hours a day. This powers my whole home, and the sk3000-124 runs in search mode during daylight hours to run heavy loads, for example my 10,200 btu AC, our countertop convection oven, espresso maker!, Table saw Etc........The only tool I have found I cannot run Is my 5 horse 110v Campbell Hausfeld air compressor. I can live with that......:D
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