Kyocera 120 failure

Hello nice people. I recently joined and this is my first post. I read here that Kyocera 120 watt panels from 2002 have a high failure rate. We have 4 of these. What do I need to know about prolonging the life of them? Anything I can do? Thanks in advance and love the forum.

Comments

  • Solar GuppySolar Guppy Solar Expert Posts: 1,963 ✭✭✭
    Re: Kyocera 120 failure

    Everything you need to know is at the link below

    http://www.solar-guppy.com/forum/kyocera-kc-120-panel-failure-t233.html
  • MarcelMarcel Solar Expert Posts: 39
    Re: Kyocera 120 failure

    Thank you very much. We just bought these panels used. The date is Feb 2002. Will Kyocera warranty these panels after 6 years? Would it help to contact the previous owner about contacting Kyocera?
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,438 admin
    Re: Kyocera 120 failure

    It would be best to at least see if the panels are failing yet (measure short circuit current in full sun with accurate DMM/amp meter).

    From what I have read, Kyocera has been very good about replacing panels (even entire sets if only a few have failed).

    Give them a call directly and see what they need/can do.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • MarcelMarcel Solar Expert Posts: 39
    Re: Kyocera 120 failure

    Please excuse my ignorance but I don't know how to check the panels. I have a multi meter but don't know what to set it on. What should I set the meter on and what should the reading be? Thanks a lot for the help.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,438 admin
    Re: Kyocera 120 failure

    With the panels disconnected and in full sun, measure the open circuit voltage. Then set the meter on 10 amp full scale, and put the meter across the solar panel output and measure the short circuit current. This will pretty much weed out ~90% of the bad panels.

    For the last 10%, take your "12 volt panel", connect a 10 amp meter in series with the panel, then connect the panel negative and meter "positive" to a 12 volt car battery. And read the full sun current (should be near Imp--I max-power). Make sure you have everything connected correctly... You don't want to connect the panel backwards to the battery, or short the amp meter on your battery.

    If any of these values is 80%, or less, of the spec sheet ratings--then the panel is probably bad.

    Also, look for brown spots under the glass and/or a bubble in the backing material under dark areas in the glass.

    Be really careful doing the amp meter readings... You can short a single solar panel (either directly, or with a current meter) without any problem--but connecting things wrong to a 12 volt car battery can case sparks/fires/blow meters.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • MarcelMarcel Solar Expert Posts: 39
    Re: Kyocera 120 failure

    Thanks again. I'll try to do this.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,438 admin
    Re: Kyocera 120 failure

    If you have any more questions, just ask...

    By the way, when making any connections to a 12 lead acid battery--remember that it may contain hydrogen gas (generated during charging). Make sure the battery is in a well ventilated place and that you don't generate any sparks that may go near the cell caps--could cause an explosion.

    Always wear safety glasses/goggles of some sort, and have water/hose nearby to wash off any acid if there is an accident.

    Some people put a rag (wet rag?) across the battery cell caps to protect them from any sparks.

    Just want you to be safe.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
Sign In or Register to comment.