ot: home solar batteries - SailNet Community
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 12 Old 12-07-2011 Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 393
Thanks: 1
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 14
 
ot: home solar batteries

Hi everyone,

I'm sorry for posting a landlubber question here, but you guys were the only ones I could think of who do this type of thing. I just bought a house (it's how everyone I know who's gone cruising in the fashion I want to cruise in started) and it's got solar. A short while ago, I got knocked off the grid (or rather, the local grid got knocked down) and I found out that my solar power ONLY feeds back into the grid to reduce my power bill. While this is cute, I'd really like to set up a battery based system + inverter at my house, just like I'd expect on a good boat, so that when I'm off the grid, I can still run my house. I'd also like to mix in wind in the next year or so (after my wallet rebounds from buying the house)

Can anyone point me in the right direction?

Thanks.

-- James
jbarros is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 12 Old 12-07-2011
Senior Member
 
kd3pc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Callao, VA
Posts: 1,389
Thanks: 0
Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts
Rep Power: 9
 
trojan or rolls batteries, unless you know some phone switch guys who are replacing the batteries.

You will need a box for those batteries, that vents to the outside along with some switching and cabling. Inverters are the same that you would use on the boat, although some are more multi function...needs of things you want to run whilst off the grid will dictate the size of the inverter.

best of luck
kd3pc is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #3 of 12 Old 12-07-2011
Senior Member
 
Tim R.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Portland, Maine
Posts: 1,547
Thanks: 1
Thanked 27 Times in 26 Posts
Rep Power: 13
 
Google terms like "off the grid" or "solar powered homes" and you will get many hits. I do not have much info but can tell you that marinized stuff will likely cost you the most.

From actual experience, I can tell you that living off the grid gets much more doable in smaller spaces, like boats. ;-)

Tim R.
Our Carina is for sale
1997 Caliber 40LRC

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

-----------------------------------------------------
Tim R. is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #4 of 12 Old 12-08-2011
Senior Member
 
mitiempo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Victoria B.C. Canada
Posts: 7,510
Thanks: 0
Thanked 96 Times in 87 Posts
Rep Power: 8
   
Lots of good information here Solar electric power components and solar panels

Brian
Living aboard in Victoria Harbour
mitiempo is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #5 of 12 Old 12-08-2011
Senior Member
 
jarcher's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Smithfield, RI
Posts: 1,008
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 8
 
Get a generator and a transfer switch. Charging batteries with solar panels is not going to be the way to go to power a house when the power goes out. If you were going to use batteries and an inverter, you're going to find that inverters are tremendously inefficient.

Helios
Scampi 30 MK-IV

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
jarcher is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #6 of 12 Old 12-08-2011
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Narragansett Bay
Posts: 11,230
Thanks: 46
Thanked 238 Times in 223 Posts
Rep Power: 7
   
Are you looking for emergency power or are you really hoping to run all appliances through an inverter? The later would require a lot of batts and not be very practical.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Jeanneau 54DS

In the harsh marine environment, something is always in need of repair. Margaritas fix everything.
Minnewaska is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #7 of 12 Old 12-08-2011
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 1
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
 
Photovoltiac energy system

My energy cost was drastically reduced after implementing photovoltiac power system. It still doesn't pay off to officially invest in huge solar power systems. The money back is almost always over 10 years.

But, if you invest in a home made photovoltiac electrical system it truly does pay off. Constructing and implementing my household system cost me below 3.000$ and the system gives me 90% electric efficiency in summer and 70% in winter. My energy problem was solved after the first couple of months adjusting it. After 1 year of using it I already got my invested money back, now If I construct 3 more panels I can sell electricity back to the network. This is what I'm planing to do. Finding good and well researched construction instructions is a problem though, I had a hard time finding them, so if you are struggling with this, this is where i found the solution: Earth4Energy.com - make solar panel and make wind turbine

Don't be afraid to invest in solar energy, I first started with powering a light bulb in my garage. Now I'm powering my house hold and I'm planing to connect my neighbor too for a decent amount of money.
Gerogeboston is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #8 of 12 Old 12-08-2011
Senior Member
 
Maine Sail's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Maine Coast
Posts: 5,889
Thanks: 20
Thanked 223 Times in 170 Posts
Rep Power: 16
       
Quote:
Originally Posted by jbarros View Post
Hi everyone,

I'm sorry for posting a landlubber question here, but you guys were the only ones I could think of who do this type of thing. I just bought a house (it's how everyone I know who's gone cruising in the fashion I want to cruise in started) and it's got solar. A short while ago, I got knocked off the grid (or rather, the local grid got knocked down) and I found out that my solar power ONLY feeds back into the grid to reduce my power bill. While this is cute, I'd really like to set up a battery based system + inverter at my house, just like I'd expect on a good boat, so that when I'm off the grid, I can still run my house. I'd also like to mix in wind in the next year or so (after my wallet rebounds from buying the house)

Can anyone point me in the right direction?

Thanks.

-- James

If this is for temporary power outages a generator would be my choice. Far less costly than what you'll spend in a lead system for a few outages per year......

______
-Maine Sail / CS-36T


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.




Images In Posts Property of Compass Marine Inc.


Maine Sail is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #9 of 12 Old 12-08-2011
Glad I found Sailnet
 
Bene505's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 3,818
Thanks: 14
Thanked 51 Times in 50 Posts
Rep Power: 9
   
As Mainesail said, it's the storeage that's really expensive. Lead-acid batteries ("lead" he called it) tend to be the cheapest type of battery to use, and they are still very expensive and must be replaced periodically if you are really using them.

If you don't want to go with a generator, you need to share some details to get the best advice. Reply with a link to a picture of you house, so others can see how big your solar system is. You'll want to make an energy budget of what you want to run in your house and for how long between charges. That will help determine how many batteries you need and the size inverter you need. (It's less efficient to run an inverter that's too big for your needs.) Any advice here will be very generalized without knowing how big your system is.

Determine if you want to have the power switch automatically, of if you are ok doing it manually. Determine what voltage your solar system is. If it's 48 volts then you'd be better-off using 48 volts as your starting point for an inverter -- you'll have to design your battery bank accordingly.

Remember to never ever drain your batteries below 50%, otherwise their life gets shortened dramatically. That means you need to take your energy budget and double it or even triple it.

Only as a final step, after you've really worked out the overall design of what you are doing, go to Walmart and get some golf cart batteries. They are 6 volts each, so you'll need to string 8 of them together to make 48 volts. Use multiple sets of these strings to get the capacity you need.

The systems for transferring power to the grid are typically designed to never put current into the grid during a power failure, otherwise linemen get shocked when working on the power lines. Part of your design will need to ensure you are fully isolated from the grid, when you are powering your house. This is the reason why you can't just play around and buy a few things and put them together to run a TV.

There are a lot of factors and considerations, this is only meant as a brief introduction. But the good news is that you are asking a very common question that most cruisers face at some point.

Regards,
Brad

.
.
Great minds discuss ideas;
Average minds discuss events;
Small minds discuss people.
.
The best minds discuss sailing (and a little bit of politics). I don't know why. It's a mystery!
.
Bene505 is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
post #10 of 12 Old 12-08-2011
Reward for lost Kraken!
 
hellosailor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 11,554
Thanks: 6
Thanked 137 Times in 134 Posts
Rep Power: 11
   
So, Geroge, assuming that you are one of Michael's happy customers and not just huckstering for his CD sales site, what did you build for $3000 ? Did you solder together your own solar cells? Build the controller and buy the batteries all for that money? Power a townhouse, or a hunting cabin from it?

Please, do tell us more, so we don't have to buy the CD to find out.
hellosailor is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

By choosing to post the reply above you agree to the rules you agreed to when joining Sailnet.
Click Here to view those rules.

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.


User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
82 C27 Batteries Wanderer2011 Gear & Maintenance 3 07-29-2011 12:55 PM
Upgrading batteries, solar etc. XPatriot Gear & Maintenance 2 05-14-2011 05:07 PM
Batteries RIP, or not? pmoyer Gear & Maintenance 11 04-08-2007 11:52 AM
Sailing: Home from home for Trentesaux (The Herald) NewsReader News Feeds 0 05-25-2006 10:15 PM
Bad batteries or something else? danapsy Gear & Maintenance 7 09-04-2002 07:56 AM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome