Outback 8048 inverter

Hi does anyone have any experience with this inverter I have 48 290 watt panels, 4 fm80 charge controllers, hub 10 ,mate and 48 230ah [email protected] Is there a way to stack these inverters together where I would get 120v on each inverter resulting in me getting the maximum current in a 240v system.
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Comments

  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    Hi islandboy, welcome to the forum!
    Someone else surely will comment on the inverter question. Meanwhile, I will comment on your battery bank.
    48, six volt batteries in a 48 volt system gives you six 48 volt strings of batteries in parallel. NOT good, It's almost a sure thing you'll have early battery failure due to unbalanced charging and discharging. Generally 3 strings are considered the max number of strings that can be managed. You have twice that. OUCH!
    Beyond that, if they are flooded batteries, which by the way are the most tolerant to abuse, you will have 144, that's one hundred forty four individual cells to regularly check for SG level and drift, as well as maintaining electrolyte levels. That's going to be a huge pain in the patience area. Sorry, but I see an early battery bank failure.
    An alternative would be 24 two volt batteries of 1380 AhHr wired in series. You'd have a single series string without the problems of multi strings, AND you'd have only 24 cells to check for SG, SG drift, and fluid levels instead of 144.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    Hi does anyone have any experience with this inverter I have 48 290 watt panels, 4 fm80 charge controllers, hub 10 ,mate and 48 230ah [email protected] Is there a way to stack these inverters together where I would get 120v on each inverter resulting in me getting the maximum current in a 240v system.

    The output of the GS848 inverter is 240 VAC split phase. You can 'stack' up to four of them.

    Interesting amount of equipment you have already. Are you replacing an older inverter with the GS?

    Ditto on Wayne's concerns over the sheer number of batteries; problems are bound to arise with that at some point. 2760 Amp hours @ 48 Volts is one massive amount of stored power: why so much?
  • islandboy43444islandboy43444 Solar Expert Posts: 45
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    This is new install in a new large home that has air conditioning, electric water heater and electric stove.
  • islandboy43444islandboy43444 Solar Expert Posts: 45
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    well I am only using 3 strings on each inverter with 2 flex80 's and 24 panels @290watts
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    well I am only using 3 strings on each inverter with 2 flex80 's and 24 panels @290watts

    No, you're not.
    The array(s) and charge controller(s) connect to batteries, not to inverters. It's important to make the distinction.
    If the inverters are stacked then they share the same battery bank and all panels/controllers are connected to it.

    You could in fact utilize multiple, entirely independent systems to power separate circuits in your home. This gives a redundancy factor which is sometimes desirable.

    But to power that electric stove (bad idea in an off-grid home) you would probably need two 6kW to 8kW inverters together because if someone turns on all the elements at once you've got about a 12kW draw there.

    I don't know how you came up with the other equipment requirements and skipped sizing the inverter. Also this electric stove points out that the battery bank really should be made of fewer, larger capacity units. Forklift battery, perhaps.
  • islandboy43444islandboy43444 Solar Expert Posts: 45
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    WOW forklift batteries like a 24-85 -25
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 9,358 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    This is new install in a new large home that has air conditioning, electric water heater and electric stove.
    somebody better educate the homeowner.
    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 ,

  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    mike95490 wrote: »
    somebody better educate the homeowner.
    It appears some insanely unscrupulous sales people already did. :cry:
  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 9,358 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    14Kwh may not go far running all the electric heating. Depends on the sun hours in the low season and if the backup generators are autostart. I don't know if the outback gear does good Generator Support
    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 ,

  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    Outback can do gen support.

    But it seems foolish to build a massive system and have to run fossil fuel in generators to make power for heating when you could just burn the fuel for heat directly.
  • islandboy43444islandboy43444 Solar Expert Posts: 45
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    mike I am in the Bahamas we get a lot of sun
  • islandboy43444islandboy43444 Solar Expert Posts: 45
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    are you guys saying I spent money for something that wont work
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    are you guys saying I spent money for something that wont work

    Not "won't work", more "could have been done better". That would start with avoiding supplying heat by electric loads and would include not having such a large number of batteries to supply whatever loads.
  • zonebluezoneblue Solar Expert Posts: 1,218 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    Not "won't work", more "could have been done better". That would start with avoiding supplying heat by electric loads and would include not having such a large number of batteries to supply whatever loads.

    Guys, bigger systems are starting to appear, i cant see that trend changing reversing any time soon.

    14kWp in the tropics gives you a good bit of energy to play with. My advice would be read everything that chris olsen has posted about "generator support", where the genset can share peak period demand.

    Who designed this system?
    1.8kWp CSUN, 10kWh AGM, Midnite Classic 150, Outback VFX3024E,
    http://zoneblue.org/cms/page.php?view=off-grid-solar


  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    zoneblue wrote: »
    Guys, bigger systems are starting to appear, i cant see that trend changing reversing any time soon.

    No doubt this is true. But it is not wise. A large system indicates inefficient energy use and waste. Guess what the whole problem with energy use of any type is? Inefficiency and waste. It's a shame to see off-grid go this way, adopting the attitude of "I'm going to have as much power as I want and use it how I please". That's what is wrong with the world.
    14kWp in the tropics gives you a good bit of energy to play with. My advice would be read everything that chris olsen has posted about "generator support", where the genset can share peak period demand.

    I would avoid gen support if at all possible for the reasons I've explained before. It works, but it is wasteful and inefficient.
    Who designed this system?

    It wasn't me! :D
  • zonebluezoneblue Solar Expert Posts: 1,218 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    No doubt this is true. But it is not wise. A large system indicates inefficient energy use and waste. Guess what the whole problem with energy use of any type is? Inefficiency and waste. It's a shame to see off-grid go this way, adopting the attitude of "I'm going to have as much power as I want and use it how I please". That's what is wrong with the world.

    Coot, im not disagreeing with you. We live on 3kWh/d off grid without undue want of anything, and we dont even own a genset.

    But, lets call a spade a spade, shifting loads to propane isnt conserving, its shifting to non renewables. Its the two 9kg propane cylllinders that we fill every 60 days that is my primary interest in this discussion. The question is how to best do this, with the least investment?
    1.8kWp CSUN, 10kWh AGM, Midnite Classic 150, Outback VFX3024E,
    http://zoneblue.org/cms/page.php?view=off-grid-solar


  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    zoneblue wrote: »
    Coot, im not disagreeing with you. We live on 3kWh/d off grid without undue want of anything, and we dont even own a genset.

    But, lets call a spade a spade, shifting loads to propane isnt conserving, its shifting to non renewables. Its the two 9kg propane cylllinders that we fill every 60 days that is my primary interest in this discussion. The question is how to best do this, with the least investment?

    No, the difference is in whether you use that propane to provide heat directly (efficient) or use it to run a generator to provide heat indirectly (inefficient). You're still using non-renewables, you're just wasting less by using the form of energy it's best suited for without a lot of conversion losses.
  • mtdocmtdoc Solar Expert Posts: 600 ✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    No, the difference is in whether you use that propane to provide heat directly (efficient) or use it to run a generator to provide heat indirectly (inefficient). You're still using non-renewables, you're just wasting less by using the form of energy it's best suited for without a lot of conversion losses.

    I agree. Using fossil fuels to run a generator so that you can do electric heating makes no sense to me.

    Generator support definitely has advantages - allowing one to use a smaller, fuel efficient generator to support occasional large loads and battery charging when the sun is not shining. Using it to regularly power large electric heating loads makes no sense to me given the obvious loss of efficiency versus direct fossil fuel heating.
  • islandboy43444islandboy43444 Solar Expert Posts: 45
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    Cariboocoot what can I do with this system to make it work,I cant return it so I have to make some kind a sense of this.
  • islandboy43444islandboy43444 Solar Expert Posts: 45
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    would series parrelling the batteries into three stings make the battery situation any better
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    would series parrelling the batteries into three stings make the battery situation any better

    I don't know what you mean by this.

    There's really only one way to wire up the batteries so that they meet the Voltage/current demand. You connect them in series to make strings of the proper Voltage, then connect those strings in parallel.
  • LOTWLOTW Solar Expert Posts: 25
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    No, the difference is in whether you use that propane to provide heat directly (efficient) or use it to run a generator to provide heat indirectly (inefficient). You're still using non-renewables, you're just wasting less by using the form of energy it's best suited for without a lot of conversion losses.

    Yeah, but it depends how much you have to do it. If you have a gas/propane water heater, oven, and dryer, you are committed to burning it all the time, regardless of your electrical capacity.

    If you have a big off grid system, the kind of gear the OP is talking, and in the area he is talking you should be able to set that up to heat the water, 2 tanks if needed as an opportunity load. Only run the clothes dryer in the afternoon near the end of absorb, and really your are just left with the range. At that point, and depending how much you use it, running the generator probably makes sense for the heavy cooking times.

    I agree about the batteries though, I have 2 strings and I find the number of cells a lot of work when doing maintenance.

    To the original poster, just out of curiosity, what is the price of propane in your area? That could also play a role in the decision to go huge on the solar system.
  • islandboy43444islandboy43444 Solar Expert Posts: 45
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    I meant wiring 2 batteries together keeping it at 6v and doubling the current
  • islandboy43444islandboy43444 Solar Expert Posts: 45
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    a 200lb cyclinder is about $388.
  • LOTWLOTW Solar Expert Posts: 25
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    a 200lb cyclinder is about $388.

    Wow. Are you sure about that? That's a little more that $2 a litre!! That would definitely explain the decision to go with as much solar as possible.
  • islandboy43444islandboy43444 Solar Expert Posts: 45
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter

    yes I am sure , desil is 575 a gallon and gas is 5.40 a gallon we pay 58cents per kwatt to the utility
  • zonebluezoneblue Solar Expert Posts: 1,218 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    No, the difference is in whether you use that propane to provide heat directly (efficient) or use it to run a generator to provide heat indirectly (inefficient). You're still using non-renewables, you're just wasting less by using the form of energy it's best suited for without a lot of conversion losses.

    Ok, that makes sense. But if you wanted to eradicate, (or radically reduce) your propane use, how would you do it?
    1.8kWp CSUN, 10kWh AGM, Midnite Classic 150, Outback VFX3024E,
    http://zoneblue.org/cms/page.php?view=off-grid-solar


  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    zoneblue wrote: »
    Ok, that makes sense. But if you wanted to eradicate, (or radically reduce) your propane use, how would you do it?

    I got rid of the propane 'frige; that was a drastic reduction. Between the on-demand water heater and cooking stove we use only around 20 lbs. per month now.

    The circumstances here make it impractical to eliminate propane and gasoline entirely. Of course the propane is much cheaper than islandboy's but the gasoline is about the same. Hence the use of the inverter-gen. The cost of generating electric from solar here is well over $2 per kW hour.

    For most of us going all-electric is not yet financially practical.
  • zonebluezoneblue Solar Expert Posts: 1,218 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    Cariboocoot what can I do with this system to make it work,I cant return it so I have to make some kind a sense of this.

    OP, this is big system, having an old qualification in electrical engineering, I managed to design and built a 1.8kW system, but for a system your size, honestly id be reaching for the yellowpages.

    It sounds like you bought a bunch of stuff, without a design. Theres only one thing to do and thats go back and do the design.

    The first place to start is your load budget. Itemize everything you want to run, how long each day it runs, and measure/obtain real world current draw for each item. After that get the solar insolation data for your site. The batterys are actually just about the last thing to consider.
    1.8kWp CSUN, 10kWh AGM, Midnite Classic 150, Outback VFX3024E,
    http://zoneblue.org/cms/page.php?view=off-grid-solar


  • LOTWLOTW Solar Expert Posts: 25
    Re: Outback 8048 inverter
    I got rid of the propane 'frige; that was a drastic reduction. Between the on-demand water heater and cooking stove we use only around 20 lbs. per month now.

    The circumstances here make it impractical to eliminate propane and gasoline entirely. Of course the propane is much cheaper than islandboy's but the gasoline is about the same. Hence the use of the inverter-gen. The cost of generating electric from solar here is well over $2 per kW hour.

    For most of us going all-electric is not yet financially practical.

    I think that's the key here, and given the OP's propane cost, he may not be in the MOST category. Burning any propane, be it for heat or electricity is costly and undesirable in this case.

    I'm at a $1 a litre for propane delivered by barge, and even at that the math on all electric isn't far away, since access is seasonal and there is a lot of sun in the summer. As it is, we use an electric dryer, and most of our hot water is opportunity load electric using the FM-80 and an SSR.
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