grid tie solar -Grid tied solar panels

March 15, 2012 – 6:22 am

** So here we go, my son and I installed the Sharp 210 watt solar panels each has its own micro Emphase 240v inverter and connect to the panel via the MC4 connectors, a piece of cake to do. Are connected to one another in series to create a string of up to 14 panels in a string. At the end of the string there are two MC connectors that go into a junction box with a longer cable MC4 and from there to a service disconnect switch. Then from the service disconnect switch and circuit breaker panel that is. Can I watch my meter back during the day, like clockwork (except when the wife is cooking or water heater is turned on). We installed the panels at the end of October and they reduce the monthly electric consumption by half – not bad. Once I have these two turbines, I should be close to zero electrical billion.

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  1. 15 Responses to “grid tie solar -Grid tied solar panels”

  2. @kijifled2 I didn’t, I have 1.6Kw of power grid tie and the other 3KW of solar is off grid to a different set of inverters using separate circuits using a Reliant manual transfer panel.

    By econewpower on Mar 15, 2012

  3. @econewpower, I suppose you’re right I will first give my power company a jingle and see if we can work something out if not I will reconfigure the system so it is not set up in an illegal way, but how did you get those grid tie inverters to work off grid?

    By kijifled2 on Mar 15, 2012

  4. @kijifled2 I would not do it and I would counsel you against it. Anything you do that is illegal will have repercussions. Here where I live they can disconnect the power from you permanently, if you get someone hurt or killed you could be looking at criminal charges. Just not worth doing it outside the system. Why don’t you just do some circuits off grid like I do and when the batteries are low it automatically switches back to their power?

    By econewpower on Mar 15, 2012

  5. If you get cought doing grid tie on the low down what could happen? I’m confident the system I’m installing is safe, we are using all UL listed equipment with sma inverters and I have a lot of electrical experience. The part I don’t want to do is the code, the conduit can only be installed in certain ways and I want to use existing wiring I installed from a sub panel. Thanks.

    By kijifled2 on Mar 15, 2012

  6. @SolarXpert Sounds good, thanks for sharing!

    By econewpower on Mar 15, 2012

  7. Nice solar panels. Just got my 3×6 solar cells and all my solar accessories from solar-deals(.)com. They have a huge sale! 4 days only. DIY solar panel kit $99. PV frames $39. Solar panels $129. Make your own solar panels and find all your diy solar products at solar-deals(.)com.

    By SolarXpert on Mar 15, 2012

  8. @backflow3908 I can watch the ouput of my panels as they are. Those grid tie inverters use a box call an Envoy and report it to a website, I can go to that website at any time and look at how much I’m producing. I have a lot more going that I have time to show on videos but hopefully one day I will get it all captured. Good observation otherwise though.

    By econewpower on Mar 15, 2012

  9. you should install a watthour electric meter on the line from your panels to yout locable disconnect, so you can see all the output from your panels, not just watch your regular electric meter turn backwards sometimes. with a meter on your panels, any power output would be shown by forward disk rotation on the decicated watthour electric meter.

    By backflow3908 on Mar 15, 2012

  10. @collintheapplegeek Collin, you have to ask YOUR power company, they have to give you permission. You have to call them and usually there are forms to fill out and an inspection to pass. You can of course do it on the sly and use one of those grid tie inverters from eBay, but if someone ever gets hurt because of them, then you’re liable. Just call your power company and they’ll be able to point you in the right direction. That’s what I had to do with my system.

    By econewpower on Mar 15, 2012

  11. @collintheapplegeek I can’t tell you what is legal in your area, you will have to check with your power company and your state laws and comply with whatever requirements they have. I do know that in most states it is legal to have a grid tie inverter that is UL1741 certified and when you have complied with your power company’s requirements. God bless you!

    By econewpower on Mar 15, 2012

  12. You’ll have to check with your power company. Mine won’t because without the second meter how woul they know how much you sold? Remember that they buy wholesale and the sell retail so they have to know how much you sold so they can discount at wholesale. I opted out of this because if I net zero then I’m essentially selling them at retail.

    By econewpower on Mar 15, 2012

  13. @collintheapplegeek Depends on your power company, you’ll have to check with them. My power company will buy the excess at wholesale while I buy at retail when I exceed my capacity. I believe by law all of them have to buy you power into their grid. The trick is to fill out their paperwork, get them to inspect your installation and approve it and having a dual meter installed ($300 from my power company) so they tell how much you sold vs. bought.

    By econewpower on Mar 15, 2012

  14. @collintheapplegeek Not yet, I only have 2KW of solar at this point and this is the worst part of the year for wind in my area. Wind should begin picking up next month and another 2Kw of solar will go online…then I’ll be off the grid or using darn little of it.

    By econewpower on Mar 15, 2012

  15. @kricotoy You have to tell me the voltage of your battery bank and the wire length from the panel to the batteries. Assuming it is a 12v system then 85 watts divided by 12 volts = 7 amps. So if you have a distance of 20 feet from the panel to the batteries you’d have to use 10 gauge wire. You can find a wire table at windsun or you can go to freesunpower and use the wire size calculator there. Good luck!

    By econewpower on Mar 15, 2012

  16. Great video looks like you did a great job I hope you save alot of money so you can get more.TAKE CARE

    By michael970 on Mar 15, 2012

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