System Update (and a wee question): Outback - Trojan RE's

SurfpathSurfpath ✭✭✭Solar Expert Posts: 393 ✭✭✭
Hello everybody.  Apologies, I have been off the forum over the past 10 months.  It's been crazy busy with work and travel.  So I thought I'd give a system update. 

I am still very happy with my all Outback (Flexpower) system.  My Trojan RE-B's also seem to be doing fine.  They are 4 years old now.  My system has been running pretty much clockwork.  I top off the 8 batteries with about 1 to 1.5 liters of water a month.  They seem to be just a touch thirstier with age.

The only item that I'm not as happy with is my 10 year old fridge/freezer.  When I went solar in 2012/3 I kill-a-watt measured it at 1.35Kwh/day.  Now it is a touch over 2.0KwH/day.  I notice that I now experience 40-45% Battery Depth of Discharge (DOD) overnight (I used to only drop  25%-35% initially - plus I was using the Outback Search feature).  If you look at the Trojan lifetime cycle chart this 10% depth-of-discharge drop translates to approx 750 less cycles.  So, since getting batteries to me is a big pain I am a little concerned. 

I don't want to get a new fridge just yet.  Maybe this summer.  What do you think about the following in the interim:

I have a digital timer and can program my fridge to cut off between 4am and 6:30am.  Sunrise varies between 6:15 and 6:30am here.  I realize all the issues about keeping the fridge cold enough to avoid food going bad, so I will measure the temps and see how it goes.

Anyway, just a thought.  Mainly I wanted to say that I am still here and doing OK.

Outback Flexpower 1 (FM80, VFX3048E-230v, Mate, FlexNetDC) 2,730watts of "Grid-type" PV, 370 AmpHrs Trojan RE-B's, Honda 2000 watt genny, 100% off grid.


  • WaterWheelWaterWheel ✭✭✭ Registered Users Posts: 328 ✭✭✭
    If the batteries are getting enough charge to go into float every day I don't see a problem with putting a timer on the fridge.       I'd probably hold off until an hour after sunrise before restarting in an effort to have slightly stronger sun on the panels.        I'd be sure to verify that the batteries are getting into float most afternoons after installing the timer since the fridge suddenly powering up every day may delay how long it takes for the controller to go into absorb.

    Wiser people on this forum may have a different opinion.

    Conext XW6848 with PDP, SCP, 80/600 controller, 60/150 controller and Conext battery monitor

    21 SW280 panels on Schletter ground mount

    48v Rolls 6CS 27P

  • SurfpathSurfpath ✭✭✭ Solar Expert Posts: 393 ✭✭✭
    Yes, I go into float each day 95% of the time.  Thanks for the tip about holding off a little later
    Outback Flexpower 1 (FM80, VFX3048E-230v, Mate, FlexNetDC) 2,730watts of "Grid-type" PV, 370 AmpHrs Trojan RE-B's, Honda 2000 watt genny, 100% off grid.
  • mike95490mike95490 ✭✭✭✭✭ Solar Expert Posts: 8,416 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Some "smart" fridges (frost free) may initiate a defrost cycle at power up.  (That's what I've heard)
    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

    gen: ,

  • westbranchwestbranch ✭✭✭✭ Solar Expert Posts: 5,149 ✭✭✭✭
    Have you checked the frost buildup in the freezer compartment?  It is usually caused by a faulty defrost timer, mine was about a $20 - 30$ ticket...  Search for DEFROST TIMER FAILURE
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2126/ 2073/ 2133 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,OmniCharge 3024,
    2 x Cisco WRT54GL i/c DD-WRT Rtr & Bridge,
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
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