Steve Harvey

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since Jan 23, 2015
Ontario
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Recent posts by Steve Harvey



My Solar lighting at work, completely solar-powered lights being powered off a battery bank and solar panels every day since March. It runs from 7pm to 2am.
1 year ago

Troy Smiddy wrote:Hello,
I live off grid in middle tn. I recently upgraded my flooded lead acid batteries to lithium because I thought the old ones had died after 5 years of use. Turns out only 1 of them died and it was taking down the whole string. I would like to put 2 6 volt 395 ah batteries together to provide lights in a shop. I know I will need 1 or 2 solar panels, a charge controller and an inverter or 12 volt lights. My worry is the 395 ah rating of the batteries. will this be to much just to run some led lights? What size wire should I use coming off of the batteries. I used 2.0 wire when they were powering a house but this seems overkill for lights. But I dont want to burn out the lights with to much power. Any advise would be great.

Thanks



The size of the battery bank does not matter as much as how much you are going to discharge them between recharging. ah, won't burn out lights, over-voltage will. I would imagine you are going to need several led light strips which will add up in wattage, if 1 light strip is 100w it will draw 10amps per hour through an inverter, so try to get lights that run off 12vdc directly and use a buck converter to limit voltage to 12vdc. Depending on what you want to bring your battery capacity down to before recharging will determine how long you will be able to run the lights, and not ruin your batteries, let say you did not want to discharge past 70% then you are only really using 115ah of that 395 capacity, but you will need panels that can recharge that 115amps back into the battery in a reasonable amount of time during the day. You will need a few hundred watts of solar panels to recharge the 115ah used within approximately 5-8 sun hours.
1 year ago

Mike Kenzie wrote:

Steve Harvey wrote:Yes, you will need one of these though. You can't just hook up the wires to the charging clamps.

https://www.amazon.ca/Camecho-12V-Cigarette-Power-Electric/dp/B073ZBNP7K/ref=sr_1_12?dchild=1&gclid=Cj0KCQiA4feBBhC9ARIsABp_nbUlFDum80OXHwdQ7fwlZXA3l4aS74qz_QIdh


So as this was the most affordable option I want to try it first. I already went to the local auto parts store and purchased one of these. So now I'm just going to hook the adapter leads to the heating device, then plug the cigarette lighter adapter end into the 12v battery tender port? It's that easy, eh?
And the battery tender should "know" how many watts to send to the heater?



The heating coil itself is a resistor and according to the print on it, it is rated for 12vdc 90watts or something, so the port on that battery tender should output exactly 12vdc which means the current drawn by the heater should be 90watts. If the voltage was not regulated which it would be out of the accessory port, like let's say you used the clamps meant for charging, them you may get 14vdc going to the heater which would increase the current draw of the heater, you want to only put 12vdc into that heater or risk damaging the wires of the heater itself, if you supply more voltage then the watts will also increase. As long as the accessory port can handle 7.5 amps of the continuous current draw then it should work, if it can't then you may let the magic white smoke out of the battery tender and there aren't a lot of shops around that know how to put the magic white smoke back into these little cheap devices anymore. So hopefully that makes sense, in other words, the impedance or resistance is set up in the heater to run on 12vdc and only draw 90watts in doing so if voltage goes up since the resistance of the heater does not change, then the current will also go up and create more heat possible damaging the heater or psu. Which, is why we want to use that cigarette port and not the clamps because the port is voltage regulated somehow internally in that battery tender possibly by a resistor of some kind.
1 year ago
I'm not vegan but I do use a lot of nutritional yeast for b vitamins because I don't eat a lot of meat and can't afford to, so I eat a lot of plants and root vegetables with nutritional yeast.
1 year ago
I am a firm believer that a watt saved is cheaper than producing extra watts as surplus. I see that there is a lot of inefficiency with this set-up and a lot of USB-powered devices being powered off a 120v inverter. I would recommend redesigning this system so only 120v powered devices run off the inverter, this will waste a lot of power otherwise but it is clear the truck itself is capable of recharging the batteries. However, this may be dependant on the availability of fuel during a crisis. You could save kilowatts of stored power by not powering devices off the inverter that don't need to be.  
1 year ago
I can't wait for translucent PV panels. I would love to build a greenhouse that is just one big PV farm.
1 year ago
I've done it, here are the lights wired up. I am very happy with the output for just 15w 12vdc.











I will take an accurate current reading tomorrow, and mount the lights better inside.

1 year ago
Planted seeds today about 100 sugar snap peas and 100+ arugulas. Now, let's hope it is warm enough in there to grow.

1 year ago
That's a lot of space in that building, how is it going to be heated? Have you thought about any zero-emission heating options to help reduce the cost of heating? like geothermal and solar water heating for in-floor radiant heat.
1 year ago