Off grid install

#1

Hi Jason, I recently seen your off grid install pictorial I was wondering who can supply and help with this in stall I’m over on the west coast Australia . Is it a system that is DIY ?

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#2

HI Pavlov,

Unfortunately off-grid systems are definitely not DIY. Modern off-grid systems use high-voltage solar arrays and inverters which must be installed by a certified electrical professional.

Are you building an off-grid home? If you are only building a shed or cabin and require very low power requirements like light lights, chargers etc then there are some DIY options. Anything more than that and you will need to have some experience/knowledge in designing and installing off-grid power systems or you will have lots of issues and may waste a lot of money.

I don’t know any off-grid installers in WA. You should ask around and do some research first.

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#3

Have spoke to a couple of local suppliers would like to use your off grid set up after reading your review. Would you be able supply only and I’ll get my own electrician to do install?

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#4

Hi Pavlov,

Sorry I’m a designer and installer, not a wholesaler, I cannot transport goods to WA. I don’t believe a standard electrician who has no experience with off-grid inverters and control equipment would not be able to program the inverters or correctly setup the system.

Hopefully you can find someone in your area who can help.
Jason

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#5

The main question is does it need to be off grid

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#6

To answer your question does it need to be off grid well yes. Being a rural property and the distance to the grid the cost to run cable this would be better invest this money in a off grid system.

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#7

Have you got a price for running the cable for a grid connection or are you just guessing that it would cost more we have installed 5 Outback systems they are great company and they’ve been at it a long time if you are going to go off grid your battery should be sealed AGM no off-gassing and no maintenance you will also need redundant backup power ie some type of generator

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#8

Hi Pavlov,

Contrary to above advice, all customers, especially Rural are able to install all there own equipment !
The critical matter is if doing a rooftop install, not killing yourself falling off, and especially when you start working on the 240V coming out of the Inverter.

I know of many people over the last 40years that have installed there own systems, the original systems back then were very rudimentary, using Truck batteries (LAB) & 36V lighting, and Generators when needed for things like washing machines etc…

However, back on topic, No matter if you are confident & safe in your abilities & knowledge of how to install a system, you MUST get a Certified Electrician to legally tick off on your system, especially if on-grid.

All the talk of using an accredited Installer, is all based on claiming STC credits, that the Customer should be claiming, and paying an electrician to install the system.

This site simply charges Licensed Electricians to advertise/put there install services on there site.
Don’t be fooled into thinking CEC Certification is superior to an Electrical licence, as it is not! Certification is simply an Approval by a regulatory body, that charge handsomely for advertising installation services.


However the Elephant in the room, is most retailers/installers prefer to get the customer to sign the very lucrative $3’000 to $4’000 STC credits over to them to install say a 6KW solar module array (6’000W ÷ 380W = 16 panels).
A competent electrician should not take more than a day to install 16 panels & inverter, not bad for a days work :face_vomiting::-1:

I believe duel axis solar trackers are more suitable to Rural installs, the complications only start if you want to be on-grid, to blackout proof your home, and that is where solar trackers come into there own, as trackers harvest the sun energy for approx. 11hrs a day around Sydney latitude, the further South the better harvesting, …unlike fixed panels are approx. 5hours peak harvesting
Compare here;
http://www.micropowergrids.com.au/Calculators/Private_Grid-v-State_Grid.html

Good luck with your project.

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#9

I don’t think that is the elephant in the room. It’s a very competitive market out there, the hundreds of solar companies in Australia are not colluding on price to make higher profits. By them claiming the STCs on behalf of the customers, it simply saves the customer an awful lot of stuffing around. Besides that, regardless of whether the customer claims themselves or not, the install still needs to be done by a CEC accredited installer and designer. And this is a good thing, as it’s not easy to install a safe solar system.

I think the critical matter is having a safe and effective system wired up. Not all electricians are familiar with solar, and particularly solar + storage. Hopefully they all will some day!

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#10

With all respects, the elephant is the $3~$4k …for a easy days work !
Although the Electrician should be the one getting the lion share of the Elephant fodder for there labour.

The fact is, there is no “awful lot of paper work”, to the contrary, just a simple form to fill out and to take images of the solar panel Barcodes, then submit to an STC agitator, and they deposit the funds directly into your bank account.
These are just one agitator dealing in Trading STC’s, down load the following.
For Personal STC’s;


For Business STC’s;

The statement “awful lot of paper work” reminds me of real-estate agents, they make a simple job sound difficult, when all that is needed is a lawyer to sign off on a private treaty/contract.

The truth is, if we only have certified solar installers, the industry would possibly end up the issues, like we had with the ‘Pink Bats saga’, were deceptive Con-artist were rorting the system, where we really only need registered electrician, but greed does funny things some people.

Wiring & running conduit & fitting stop switches/fuses, is Very simple, as it is virtually Plug & Play, the most difficult part is getting the 20kg panels onto the roof & tying yourself off on the roof.

The internet is slowly making the middlemen Retailers in many other industries obsolete.

I have called may TV specials and other Retailers to unearth the facts behind there Sales pitches, that offer a 6kW system fully installed, commonly for $3.5k +/-, when you say you Just want to purchase the system without them installing it, they ALL double the price to just Supply the equipment. …That SAYS IT ALL !

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