OUR SOLAR SYSTEM UPGRADES - Part 2
First visit? Check out OUR SOLAR SYSTEM UPGRADES PART 1
Part 2 of this blog will cover the rest of the system and it's design & layout. If not too long we may get into some performance data! To begin I will list the specific equipment I used with links to said items.
- Victron SmartSolar 150/70 Charge Controller
- Victron SmartSolar 150/100
- Gigavac High-Voltage DC Cutoff Switches
- 25' - 2AWG Welding Wire
- 25' - 6AWG Welding Wire
- 10' - 4/0 AWG Welding Wire
- Victron Multi-Plus Inverter 12/3000/120-50
- Victron Color Control CCGX
- Bussman DC Breakers
- Battleborn 100ah Lithium Batteries
- DC Cutoff Switches
- DC Busbars
So now that we have covered that equipment we will cover the installation! As you know from part 1, we have the solar running through the cutoff switches in the grey box and then through the two different charge controllers. From there we are running 2AWG from the charge controllers to the positive and negative bus-bars. The bus bars that I utilized are just ok. For some reason the threads on the nuts/bolts used in the bars don't hold up and the nuts/bolts seize very easily and usually and decent ways down the post. Those two controllers are mounted to the right side of the compartment.
The next part of the setup is the batteries. There are five battleborn lithium batteries wired in parallel. I originally had these sitting flat, on the bottom of the compartment. For the upgrade I needed more space in the compartment. For this reason I took advantage of one the abilities of the lithium batteries. I flipped them on end against the back wall which used the full height of the lower section and opened up the front area of the compartment for a little more equipment. The positive and negative cables from the battery bank to the bus-bar are run from opposite ends of the bank to ensure that each of the five batteries are equally charged and discharged. All wiring from the bus bars to and through the batteries were 4/0 AWG wiring.
Victron inverters have many features that are a little above and beyond that of other manufacturers. I replaced a Magnum MS2000 inverter for this upgrade. It worked fine and honestly wasn't going to be replaced. I simply decided to line up all of my system with Victron equipment due to the pricing i was able to secure the equipment for as a package deal.
The new inverter is a 3kw, 50A inverter/charger device. If I had to give a downside to this new system it would be that in order to setup the inverter you either have to adjust some dip switches based on flashing lights(Not Fun), or buy an additional cable to connect to your inverter to a computer via USB for adjustments. The Victron inverter has several great features; an internal transfer switch(shore power to inverter), two-120v line outs(one only hot with shore power), multiple communication protocols, Lithium ready charger(with minor adjustments) and parallel operation. this device is wired to the bus-bars with 4/0 AWG cable and utilized the existing wires for the 120v circuits.
Finally you will notice there are several options in place for circuit protection and isolation. All of this is controlled and monitored through the Victron CCGX. This color controller is huge in capability! This controller can track GPS, connect via wifi or lan and adjust some settings on devices. All of this connectivity enables the user to monitor and access the system from virtually anywhere! The system also logs all the statistics you could ever want on the VRM portal...Just check mine out below! The link posted here is a very limited view of it's logging capability, but provides some insight.
Well doesn't look like we are gonna get into the use data so keep an eye out for another post about that in the future! Don't forget to subscribe and tell us your thoughts!