Yet another solar update kind of….

I haven’t posted much about my solar setup which in a way is a huge kudos to the system. The reason I haven’t posted about it is because I FORGOT about it. That’s the ultimate compliment to something I can think of. When it works so flawlessly that you take it for granted and don’t even remember its there its doing a GREAT job.

I did make a few changes over the last few months since the last time I posted about it. I added another large 24 volt panel thinking I needed a bit more power. Heck you always need “more power” so that wasn’t something I could get wrong. But it didn’t fix the issue I thought I had.

What was actually happening had more to do with bad connections (rust) and poor design on how I had the batteries connected to the system.

Like most people I had used diagrams found on the net showing how to run the battery cables in all kinds of complicated ways to get the most power out of the batteries. But what I found was that all I needed was to have a common bus bar and have each paired 12 volt battery (they are wired in series to produce 24 volts for each pair of 12 volt batteries) connected directly to the bus bars.

This change DOUBLE the how much power I got from the batteries each night. That’s not a factual math thing as much as what I saw the next morning before the sun came up.

Again part of the problem was corroded connections but even after cleaning those I was almost running out of power before the night was out. Also of note when I say running out of power I actually mean down to 1/2 power since I wont let my battery bank get below 50%.

After moving the cables to a common bus bar I now only show to be using 15% of my battery power each night tops and that’s after adding more load too.

So I highly recommend using bus bars for your batteries with solar power.

A friend is making a battery box for me and I plan on setting up a shutter system to protect my panels in the event of hail. When these get done I will post more pictures of the system.