Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?

BilljustBill
BilljustBill Solar Expert Posts: 219 ✭✭✭
In looking at MPPT controllers, I'm wondering why this 45amp MPPT controller is at a lower cost than many others half the rating?

BZ MPPT500HV 45A 500W MPPT PWM SOLAR CHARGE CONTROLLER

Thanks,
Bill
Bill

Comments

  • BB.
    BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 33,439 admin
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?

    At least in times past, stay away from BZ.

    Here are some Google results for "BZ" searches on Wind-Sun.com.

    Here is one thread where Solar Guppy placed a BZ unit in his test lab.

    By the way, to search for short strings (like "BZ") or use natural language searchs on Wind-Sun.com--Use Google and type in:
    • BZ site:wind-sun.com
    This will search for "BZ" on the Wind-Sun.com forum. Works much better than the forum search tools for short words/phrases.

    Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • icarus
    icarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,436 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?

    The reason it is "such a deal" is that it is a "POS". (That is piece of scrap Neil lol!) (glad you clarified that for me, niel.:cool::p)

    It is the only MPPT controller that I know of that actually puts in fewer amps than no controller at all. If you want to buy one,, Don't!

    Tony
  • mike95490
    mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 9,583 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?

    Perhaps the WattGate can help, I've heard the cryo treated metals do wonders, the reviews are awesome!
    http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?Partnumber=110-439&vReviewShow=1&&vReviewPage=7&vReviewRand=2769824#reviews
    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
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  • halfcrazy
    halfcrazy Solar Expert Posts: 720 ✭✭✭
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?

    Yes but for the Watt Gate to work you will need these cables http://www.noiseaddicts.com/2008/11/most-expensive-speaker-cable-world-audioquest-audiophile/
  • Blayd
    Blayd Registered Users Posts: 21 ✭✭✭
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?
    In looking at MPPT controllers, I'm wondering why this 45amp MPPT controller is at a lower cost than many others half the rating?

    BZ MPPT500HV 45A 500W MPPT PWM SOLAR CHARGE CONTROLLER

    Thanks,
    Bill

    I have the BZ 500MPPT, and if it is the same critter, then its a reliable workhorse. They run around $200.00USD per unit. Perhaps the pricing is low because of the top limit of 500 watts when many are looking at much more powerful systems. They have been about the same price for the past three years if that helps.

    You have a choice of charging 12, 24, or 48 volt battery banks. Has simple digital meter, a probe for battery temperature, and an LED for float.
  • icarus
    icarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,436 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?
    Blayd wrote: »
    I have the BZ 500MPPT, and if it is the same critter, then its a reliable workhorse. They run around $200.00USD per unit. Perhaps the pricing is low because of the top limit of 500 watts when many are looking at much more powerful systems. They have been about the same price for the past three years if that helps.

    You have a choice of charging 12, 24, or 48 volt battery banks. Has simple digital meter, a probe for battery temperature, and an LED for float.

    No offense, but have you ever compared your BZ side by side with either any other controller (pwm or mppt) or no controller at all? I set it up one time against a simple Morningstar PWM controller and a Bluesky MPPT controller, with a shunt and ammeter and a switch system. The ammeter would measure PV current before the controller, and a Trimetric measuring actual current into the battery from the controller. The PWM controller consistently showed essentially the same current in/out, within ~.01 amp @ ~13 vdc. The BlueSky would show a little bit of gain, out put over input. (I did this test a couple of times so the mppt boost was as much as ~10% or ~ .5 amp.

    The BZ controller consistently showed that out put current was actually LOWER than the input, across voltage and current ranges.

    Now this is in no way to be considered any sort of scientific/controlled experiment, I do know that I have trusted my meter systems over the years.

    I replicated this experiment recently with the BZ an the Rouge 30 amp mppt controller. The results were very much the same, leading me to once again, conclude that the BZ is a POS. What it really doesn't do is hold any consistent current even with steady state battery and steady state sun.

    Tony
  • PhilS
    PhilS Solar Expert Posts: 370 ✭✭✭
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?

    Hey Tony!

    I finally found a use for my third BZ controller. I installed a Grundfos well pump and its controller uses a float switch to turn the pump off when the tank is "full". I needed to use a pressure switch to control the pump, i.e I needed to reverse the "normally open, normally closed" situation with a relay.

    I wanted the relay enclosed, and voila! I had an enclosure. The attached pic is of the inside, and the cover now is labeled "well pump pressure relay" where it used to say BZ MPPT 500.

    Phil
  • icarus
    icarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,436 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?

    Hey Phil,

    Pretty expensive can! If you need the other one back, I'll send it. I keep thinking I will toss it, but I just can't bear to. It still has the nice digital ammeter, but there is no way of using it without the controller.

    T
  • Blayd
    Blayd Registered Users Posts: 21 ✭✭✭
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?
    icarus wrote: »
    No offense, but have you ever compared your BZ side by side with either any other controller (pwm or mppt) or no controller at all? I set it up one time against a simple Morningstar PWM controller and a Bluesky MPPT controller, with a shunt and ammeter and a switch system. The ammeter would measure PV current before the controller, and a Trimetric measuring actual current into the battery from the controller. The PWM controller consistently showed essentially the same current in/out, within ~.01 amp @ ~13 vdc. The BlueSky would show a little bit of gain, out put over input. (I did this test a couple of times so the mppt boost was as much as ~10% or ~ .5 amp.

    The BZ controller consistently showed that out put current was actually LOWER than the input, across voltage and current ranges.

    Now this is in no way to be considered any sort of scientific/controlled experiment, I do know that I have trusted my meter systems over the years.

    I replicated this experiment recently with the BZ an the Rouge 30 amp mppt controller. The results were very much the same, leading me to once again, conclude that the BZ is a POS. What it really doesn't do is hold any consistent current even with steady state battery and steady state sun.

    Tony

    No offense taken.:D IMHO the BZ would rate as an "entry level" controller. I expect some losses from any item, from simple connections, the MPPT controller, and from the inverters/converters. As my system continues to grow I will be seeking the opinions of those here for the "no-nonsense" equipment that I will need.

    One thing that I have learned is many vendors lack the "long-term real world" experiences with the products they are selling.

    I will keep the BZ unit I have in service when its upgrade time, but for a spare system comprised of components that have been orphaned in an upgrade which can run the non-essentials and electricity wasters, as well as some of the 12VDC items that are installed in my home.

    My goals right now, given the finances are to:
    1* replace the hodge-podge of batteries with one 709Ah 12VDC forklift battery.
    2* add more PV panels w/ a superior MPPT unit.
    and to eventually merge the best components to turn the primary sysytem into a higher voltage system than the current 12VDC configuration.
  • PhilS
    PhilS Solar Expert Posts: 370 ✭✭✭
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?
    Blayd wrote: »
    No offense taken.:D IMHO the BZ would rate as an "entry level" controller.
    I will keep the BZ unit I have in service when its upgrade time, but for a spare system comprised of components that have been orphaned in an upgrade which can run the non-essentials and electricity wasters, as well as some of the 12VDC items that are installed in my home.

    Daniel,

    Since you aren't taking offense at remarks about BZ products I'll just have to add that using a BZ controller is throwing away solar output. If you found and read my previous posts you understand that some members here have tested the unit and found it not only "lacking the MPPT advantage" but that it doesn't even produce the power that an old Xantrex PWM controller would. By my estimation, when you use one of these you'd need 20% more panels to achieve the equivilant production of using ANY other controller. It wastes valuable power.

    Phil
  • icarus
    icarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,436 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?

    The point is, it not only doesn't provide ANY mppt boost, it loses more system power than the simplest, cheapest controller. It is, in essence, a LOAD on your batteries all the time the sun is out!

    It may keep your batteries from overcharging, but it sure as heck doesn't allow them to even take average advantage of your PV capacity, much less than the best advantage.

    Even the venerable old C-60 pwm controller can be had new for under ~$180, used probably a lot less.

    Tony
  • bcolebuild
    bcolebuild Registered Users Posts: 10
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?

    you all make some pretty convincing arguments against the BZ, what would you recommend for a 400 watt system, will a C40 really steal 30%? whats a cheap MPPT?
  • icarus
    icarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,436 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Know anything about a BZ MPPT 45amp contoller?

    Try to limit asking the same question to one thread. See the answers to your questions in the beginners thread. As I said over there, don't skimp on the CC. Consider the Rogue or the Morningstar mppt. Any other "cheap" mppt controller is likely to be a POS.

    A C-40 (or any PWM controller won't "steal" 30%, but the inverse is true.

    Here is the illustration. The panel(s) will put out a consistent current lets say 17 v @ 3 amps or ~51 watts But your battery is at 12.5 volts, so the panel can only put in 12.5 v *3 amps or 37.5 watts or ~75% There is nothing a PWM controller can do. The only way you will get near rated output is if the batteries are very close to the VMP of the PV and in that case that would be overcharging the batteries.

    An MPPT controller, takes that extra voltage, and converts it to amperage so that you might have an equation that looks like this, input 17.3*3 amp= 51 watts Out put 12.5 volts *4 amps=50 watts. (There is never a 100% conversion rate)

    In the real world, with normally discharged batteries, cool panel temps, and perfect morning sun, I see ~20% increase. Over the course of the day I would guess that I average ~10%, because as the panel temps rise, and the battery becomes closer to fully charged, the mppt advantage is lost.

    Personally, in your case it isn't going to make much difference. You might consider buying another panel or two, and buy a good PWM controller. I prefer the MPPT since I have short days, and limited area for Panels.


    Tony