Well – my solar panels are on the roof, wires run, charge controller running and inverter installed. Just one problem – the system will not fill the role I originally intended. I am usually pretty good at math – but in this particular situation I failed to recognize the results of a simple math equation right in front of me.
First off – my plan was to use the solar panels to charge couple of marine batteries which would then power a very small refrigerator. The fridge is needed for my sons insulin in the event that the grid fails. Here is the problem:
Solar panels produce 45 watts of power for every hour of good sunlight (approx 8)
Refrigerator consumes 140 watts of power per hour 24/7.
Power needed = 3,360 watts daily
Maximum power supplied from solar panels = 360 watts daily
Obviously I am way shy of getting the power that is needed. I just did not so the math at the beginning. In order to make this successful – I need a total of 10 of these systems. That is not going to work. To accomplish what I have set out to do – I will have to rethink this project. I need more power – so a larger system is needed. I also need to source a lower power consumption refrigerator.
Another option is to seek alternate types of refridgerators to start with which consume little to no power.
Regardless of this setback – I still have my solar panels (which I purchased at Harbor Freight). I plan to use the system as it is now configured to perform a variety of roles such as running a radio, power tools such as a drill, and charge batteries.
Having this small system in a grid down situation will be MUCH better than having nothing at all.
More to come……