Code restrictions of where an Inverter can be Located?

midijeepmidijeep Registered Users Posts: 102 ✭✭✭
I have a SMA SunnyBoy that is placed inside of my car garage ( garage is attached to the house).    I have the Sunny Island and Battery bank down in the basement ( Isolated room).  Are there any code restricts that would keep me from moving the SunnyBoy down in the basement of the home?   I have the NEC 2017 rapid shutdown in place (Tigo's at the panels going from SMA Rooftop kit via cable to SunnyBoy).  I am in Utah.

Comments

  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 3,630 ✭✭✭✭
    Code always varies from county to county and inspector to inspector and how agreeable their breakfast or lunch was. 
    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
  • midijeepmidijeep Registered Users Posts: 102 ✭✭✭
    softdown said:
    Code always varies from county to county and inspector to inspector and how agreeable their breakfast or lunch was. 
    So true!  I think since the Sunny Island and battery bank has all ready be inspected and approved,  I'll go ahead and move the SunnyBoy to that room and call it good.
  • icarusicarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,436 ✭✭✭✭
    softdown said:
    Code always varies from county to county and inspector to inspector and how agreeable their breakfast or lunch was. 
    I actually disagree a bit with this.  Having worked in the trades for 30+ years, having gotten my ICBO inspectors ticket and worked as a fill in building inspector I think it is much simpler than that.  A good inspector works to fulfill the “spirit” of the code, not just the letter.  For example if a device is “supposed to be located no more than 36” from something” no good inspector will give a hoot about 37” UNLESS the function of the rule is compromised.  

    All inspectors answer to higher ups, building inspectors to local/state/county building officials, electrical inspectors to local/state electrical authorities.  If you don’t like the answer your inspector gives you on a questionable code interpretation, feel free to take it to a higher authority, and ultimately to a court if you feel the need.

    All that said, good builders/electricians/plumbers (trades people) don’t (and shouldn’t!) look at the relationship as adversarial.  Being knowledgeable, friendly, helpful and most importantly respectful goes a long way to oiling what might be troubled waters.  For example, on a recover inspection on a custom home, there was always one or two things that the inspector found, like adding a nail in a header, or a nail plate over a wire or pipe.  Rather than require me to call him back to look at it again, we had good enough relationships that they trusted us to do the right thing, knowing that if we were caught not making the correction ever, that grace would not be granted in the future. 

    One can argue about the efficacy of any given code, and I certainly do (and did) but at the inspection level is not the place to argue that.  The place to argue that is with the building official, the code chapter writers etc.  Most code authorities have workshops for stake holders where common problems can be addressed and changed in future code reviews.

    We may all be against codes and inspectors for ourselves, but we are kinda glad there are there when a fire breaks out in our child’s apartment and smoke detectors are there because of code, egress windows are there etc, etc, etc.

    Tony
  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 3,630 ✭✭✭✭
    icarus said:
    softdown said:
    Code always varies from county to county and inspector to inspector and how agreeable their breakfast or lunch was. 
    I actually disagree a bit with this.  Having worked in the trades for 30+ years, having gotten my ICBO inspectors ticket and worked as a fill in building inspector I think it is much simpler than that.  A good inspector works to fulfill the “spirit” of the code, not just the letter.  For example if a device is “supposed to be located no more than 36” from something” no good inspector will give a hoot about 37” UNLESS the function of the rule is compromised.  

    All inspectors answer to higher ups, building inspectors to local/state/county building officials, electrical inspectors to local/state electrical authorities.  If you don’t like the answer your inspector gives you on a questionable code interpretation, feel free to take it to a higher authority, and ultimately to a court if you feel the need.

    All that said, good builders/electricians/plumbers (trades people) don’t (and shouldn’t!) look at the relationship as adversarial.  Being knowledgeable, friendly, helpful and most importantly respectful goes a long way to oiling what might be troubled waters.  For example, on a recover inspection on a custom home, there was always one or two things that the inspector found, like adding a nail in a header, or a nail plate over a wire or pipe.  Rather than require me to call him back to look at it again, we had good enough relationships that they trusted us to do the right thing, knowing that if we were caught not making the correction ever, that grace would not be granted in the future. 

    One can argue about the efficacy of any given code, and I certainly do (and did) but at the inspection level is not the place to argue that.  The place to argue that is with the building official, the code chapter writers etc.  Most code authorities have workshops for stake holders where common problems can be addressed and changed in future code reviews.

    We may all be against codes and inspectors for ourselves, but we are kinda glad there are there when a fire breaks out in our child’s apartment and smoke detectors are there because of code, egress windows are there etc, etc, etc.

    Tony
    That is the perspective of a code officer. I have the perspective of an owner of multiple homes and plenty of dealings with permits and codes.  My own experience is that of code forcing mediocrity with the result being modern homes that are ugly, overly expensive saltboxes that are not expected to last as long as homes built prior to gonzo code. Why, the focus was on meeting code. Sometimes 700 pages of it. Just like governance, I think we need a little code. Just like governance, too much can suffocate and crush the spirit while draining the wallet. 

    Code is good for idiots and we have a lot of them. There is that. 

    Of course cops and drivers will tend to see things differently. 
    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
  • icarusicarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,436 ✭✭✭✭
    ^Correction.  This is the perspective of a multi decade user, builder, homeowner, who actually did a tiny bit of code enforcement.  My guess is that people who fight inspectors are simply fighting the code(s), failing to understand where the responsibility lies.  As a professional one realizes that as a stake holder, you have a voice in codes and code enforcement.  If one doesn’t like a particular code, or code section, fight the jurisdiction that adopted that particular code, and work, as a stakeholder to change and improve future iterations.


  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 3,630 ✭✭✭✭
    Or - if living 2200 miles away then bend over. I've done a lot of bending over. 
    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
  • EstragonEstragon Registered Users Posts: 4,496 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I wish it were as simple as having a reasonable discussion with professionals about how to meet the life safety intent of code. 

    The reality is there are a lot of vested interests with an agenda.
    Off-grid.  
    Main daytime system ~4kw panels into 2xMNClassic150 370ah 48v bank 2xOutback 3548 inverter 120v + 240v autotransformer
    Night system ~1kw panels into 1xMNClassic150 700ah 12v bank morningstar 300w inverter
  • softdownsoftdown Solar Expert Posts: 3,630 ✭✭✭✭
    My own experience in trying to deal with various governmental institutions is "How dare you question us!. Just spend $10,000 and replace the leach field that we instructed you to."  It did not matter that all pump outs revealed kitchen grease and baby wipes in the septic pipes. The flushing problems continued unabated until the next tenant did a good "roto rooter" and removed the baby wipes.

    Had I not spent $10,000 on the XL leach field, I would likely have done the roof. The old roof was the cause of loosing two years of rents and the counties decision to condemn the house because of one short water damaged wall - that was adjacent to the main load bearing wall. 

    I'd say that gross abuse of power eventually cost me well over $100,000. Wound up having to sell the house for half price due to the "condemned" condition. The county said I had to have an engineer certify anything and everything. I did employ one recommended engineer - neither he nor my general contractor (another forced hire) knew their rear from a hole in the ground. 

    But hey, they hold government certificates. Who is a lowly prole to question that almighty status anyway? 

    They are now in the process of destroying my other Florida rental unit via draconian and impossible demands (48 hours to fix). 

    First Bank:16 180 watt Grape Solar with  FM80 controller and 3648 Inverter....Fullriver 8D AGM solar batteries. Second Bank/MacGyver Special: 10 165(?) watt BP Solar with Renogy MPPT 40A controller/ and Xantrex C-35 PWM controller/ and Morningstar PWM controller...Cotek 24V PSW inverter....forklift and diesel locomotive batteries
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