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Thread: Solar inverter

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    Solar inverter

    I am looking at installing a inverter and pv panels to run completely off grid. I have only done installations with Axpert inverters and am very happy with their easy installation and performance. Now this time Iím looking at other brand inverters but it seems the agents of these other brands want to set the inverters up themselves. Now I always do my own setting up as electrician and donít want to rely on agents. Is their other brands worth looking at with a open book policy like the Axpert? Should I stick to what I now Axpert?
    Only reason Iím thinking of other brands, is some clients ask for other brands and I then show them away as I donít want to get involved with Agent restrictions. What brands are worth trying that would fall in my category?

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    Diamond Member Justloadit's Avatar
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    With respect to the Axpert "Hybrid" inverter, here is an interesting take done by a local engineer from Greenpro - Green Pro Consulting.

    This is a particularly interesting video.

    Be aware of the limitations of the highly popular Axpert inverter especially when using it with Solar panels.

    I have been scratching around the web for info on inverters and the amount of nonsense doing the rounds is staggering. It seems that the Axpert type inverter id VERY popular primarily due to the low price. In the video the author points out that even on the manufacturers site (Voltronic from Taiwan) the “Axpert” is described as an off-grid inverter. If the load exceeds the incoming PV then the supply is shifted, completely, to mains. It’s either PV OR mains. There is no “mixing” of the two. If you want his, then you have to go for a (true) hybrid.

    Another interesting video by www.greenpro.co.za on Earth Fault Testing on PV String

    If you wish to heat water using PV panels, we have a locally designed and manufactured system by Usedasun
    If you wish any info, send an email via the contact page.
    Victor - Knowledge is a blessing or a curse, your current circumstances make you decide!
    Solar and LED lighting solutions - www.microsolve.co.za

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    @ justloadit, Thanks for great video explaining mixing of power. My Axpert works completely off grid during the day as long as their is solar, than grid at night with fully charged batteries ready as load shed back up. This way there is no additional cost with grid tie meters and relying too much on grid power for mixing. My aim is to completely move away from grid if possible to have maximum saving.

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    Hi Rifrug

    I wholeheartedly agree with you, I have an Axpert and run mine the same.

    I do have a concern in that at 05h30 in the morning I am generating about 40 -60 watts and then my battery assists which is fine if we don't have load shedding at 08h00, does anyone know how to set the inverter to only cut the grid off when you get to say 400 watts?

    Secondly has anyone used the wifi box for the Axpert?

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    Hi SeanM
    I don’t think the Axpert is capable of switching over at a certain watts setting. Maybe in the software side of things there is the possibility of such settings. I don’t know enough of the software and I was not really bothered to even plug my inverter onto a pc yet, I just done the settings on the keypad as per the manual. I installed a auto change over contactor in my DB that I control with my cell phone. I’ve set a timer on my phone, so my home switch between inverter and grid automatic as per timer settings. Actually I have two contactors one for essential loads and one for non-essential loads, both with their own timer settings.
    I am also interested for something that can sense the solar pv watts available as that would help me switch to grid in cloudy weather, currently mine switch to grid on battery low setting on Axpert.

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    Diamond Member AndyD's Avatar
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    I wouldn't use an Axpert for an off-grid system. I have one that I use as a back-up system for loadshedding and for the cost they're great for this application but I don't think they're features and programming options are ideal for off-grid. I would be looking at a Victron multiplus or Fronius.
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    Diamond Member Justloadit's Avatar
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    I would rather invest in a hybrid inverter, in which there is a battery back up as well, rather than a stand alone grid tie, where no ESKOm means no energy in the house even if there is full sunlight.

    Check out ART Solar Hybrid Inverter a few Rands more but has the battery as a back up on mains failure.
    Victor - Knowledge is a blessing or a curse, your current circumstances make you decide!
    Solar and LED lighting solutions - www.microsolve.co.za

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    The Growatt inverter is a beauty but my budget was unfortunately not so friendly. I had to go for the Axpert, I might be able to get a better inverter after about two to three years of savings with my current Axpert setup. I installed a KWH meter on my solar production and slowly see my Rand savings totaling up. But I am also impressed with Axpert’s performance and low cost that made it possible for the average person like myself to own a solar system that reduces the municipal bill and is also a must to overcome load shedding.

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