Generator or Inverter for residential use?

deesef

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Mar 3, 2017
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Batteries would not have saved me now. Power has been of since 14:15 yesterday. Almost 30 hours and counting...

I've been running my diesel generator for many hours since yesterday.
 

Saba'a

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Batteries would not have saved me now. Power has been of since 14:15 yesterday. Almost 30 hours and counting...

I've been running my diesel generator for many hours since yesterday.
But batteries and pv panels.

Why I want to add pv panels. But yes, will need more batteries. Only 2 x Us3000C batteries for now.
 

deesef

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But batteries and pv panels.

Why I want to add pv panels. But yes, will need more batteries. Only 2 x Us3000C batteries for now.
Yeah. Batteries plus batteries plus batteries until one catches fire and burns the house down...
 

deesef

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It must be the grumpiness from the power outage talking, why would the battery catch fire?
You have never heard of a fire caused by batteries? Phones? Cars? Bluetooth devices?

Just a matter of time before houses are impacted, due to the many variables beyond the control of the manufacturer...


On a brighter note, our power was restored last night at 22:22 (32 hours and 7 minutes down). It was also cloudy during the days, so a battery / solar system would need to have been grossly over provisioned to provide power for the duration.
 

TheChamp

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You have never heard of a fire caused by batteries? Phones? Cars? Bluetooth devices?

Just a matter of time before houses are impacted, due to the many variables beyond the control of the manufacturer...


On a brighter note, our power was restored last night at 22:22 (32 hours and 7 minutes down). It was also cloudy during the days, so a battery / solar system would need to have been grossly over provisioned to provide power for the duration.
I have also heard of a fire caused by mains electricity, talking about variables beyond the manufacturer, it's pretty much a risk in everything, batteries, eskom power, generator, cars...

I get that you prefer your generator, it makes sense to you but it doesn't have to be at the expense of unfair criticism on battery and solar systems.

Many who installed solar have gas stoves and water heaters so the battery and solar mainly runs lights and electronics, so it is not mission impossible to get through an extended power outage, plus there's always an option of plugging the tried and tested generator to pick up the slack and charge the batteries, it doesn't have to be one or the other.
 

akescpt

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For everyone sinking money into the installations, are you foreseeing big problems with Eskom going forward? Is it just to avoid LoadShedding? Is their actual ROI on the money used eventually before some of the big components must be replaced?

We made the decision to just sort the 8 year old out with streaming and the adults are not catered for. Internet is always up. Got lights and Big powerbank for the LoadShedding.

This was before WFH though. But bosses are not urging us to put in any backup power. We mostly on the same zone so they aware when we off. In any case I have a laptop from work to keep me busy when it strikes.

But I find myself looking at inverters, batteries, etc. not even sure why.

Did you achieve your goal you set out with your installation and are you still happy with the amount of money you spent?
 

RonSwanson

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May 21, 2018
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For everyone sinking money into the installations, are you foreseeing big problems with Eskom going forward? Is it just to avoid LoadShedding? Is their actual ROI on the money used eventually before some of the big components must be replaced?

We made the decision to just sort the 8 year old out with streaming and the adults are not catered for. Internet is always up. Got lights and Big powerbank for the LoadShedding.

This was before WFH though. But bosses are not urging us to put in any backup power. We mostly on the same zone so they aware when we off. In any case I have a laptop from work to keep me busy when it strikes.

But I find myself looking at inverters, batteries, etc. not even sure why.

Did you achieve your goal you set out with your installation and are you still happy with the amount of money you spent?
I am very happy, funds were well spent.
I make sure that I never pay CoJ any more than I absolutely have to, which is around R30-R50 per month. That gives me satisfaction. Plus I can support the neighbours who are not as fortunate as myself, or who have other priorities in their lives (some prefer to drive ostentatiously swanky cars). And my security and communications systems are all up, all of the time, without resorting to multiple point solutions, each demanding their own maintenance and management, and the health risks of tripping over trolleys, extension cords and battery banks. The last bit alone makes it worthwhile.
I learnt a lot through the process, still learning today. Batteries will need replacing in 10 -15 years, and I have a small fund in case anything else goes.
On Eskom, is that a rhetoric question?
 

signates

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Dec 8, 2009
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For everyone sinking money into the installations, are you foreseeing big problems with Eskom going forward? Is it just to avoid LoadShedding? Is their actual ROI on the money used eventually before some of the big components must be replaced?

We made the decision to just sort the 8 year old out with streaming and the adults are not catered for. Internet is always up. Got lights and Big powerbank for the LoadShedding.

This was before WFH though. But bosses are not urging us to put in any backup power. We mostly on the same zone so they aware when we off. In any case I have a laptop from work to keep me busy when it strikes.

But I find myself looking at inverters, batteries, etc. not even sure why.

Did you achieve your goal you set out with your installation and are you still happy with the amount of money you spent?
ROI is secondary for me. I take the view that my cost is basically prepaying my electricity for the next 7 to 10 years instead of giving it to the municipality or Eskom every month. So I've prepaid R200k into my setup and have already generated over R22k.

Who knows what the municipal or Eskom rate will be in 7 years time. Probably a lot more than what it costs me currently. Screenshot_20210305-103614_SOLARMAN%20Business.jpg
 

Tariqe

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Mar 20, 2016
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i started my solar project last year when we had stage 6 load shedding for a day and multiple days of stage 3 and 2.
During summer months I pay CoCT about R50 per month for electricity, my ROI at current electricity prices is about seven years, would I have started the project this year, with the way load shedding being not bad at all, probably would have gone with a trolley/ sine wave inverter/charger
 

Neuk_

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Jan 23, 2018
Messages
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For everyone sinking money into the installations, are you foreseeing big problems with Eskom going forward? Is it just to avoid LoadShedding? Is their actual ROI on the money used eventually before some of the big components must be replaced?

We made the decision to just sort the 8 year old out with streaming and the adults are not catered for. Internet is always up. Got lights and Big powerbank for the LoadShedding.

This was before WFH though. But bosses are not urging us to put in any backup power. We mostly on the same zone so they aware when we off. In any case I have a laptop from work to keep me busy when it strikes.

But I find myself looking at inverters, batteries, etc. not even sure why.

Did you achieve your goal you set out with your installation and are you still happy with the amount of money you spent?

Our initial install was for load shedding but I always wanted to get some semblance of self reliance or more accurately, less reliance on Eskom/CoJ (City Power). Although cost was a factor, I never bothered with ROI as saving money was not the primary goal even though it is a benefit.
 

signates

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Dec 8, 2009
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i started my solar project last year when we had stage 6 load shedding for a day and multiple days of stage 3 and 2.
During summer months I pay CoCT about R50 per month for electricity, my ROI at current electricity prices is about seven years, would I have started the project this year, with the way load shedding being not bad at all, probably would have gone with a trolley/ sine wave inverter/charger
A stopgap for just load shedding will always work out cheaper initially but there is no savings normally as there would not always be solar panels connected to it. Batteries are for load shedding and recharged from the grid.

I could've just spent R30k on a trolley battery backup system but it would not have any savings. Instead it would just be a money pit in having to replace batteries every 5 to 10 years.

The savings and ROI only comes in when you start generating >10kwh per day. And I'm not even taking into account future tariff increases.
 

Tariqe

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Mar 20, 2016
Messages
144
@signates , as you said, you think of it as prepaying Eskom for the next seven years, that is the way for me to look at it also, thanks
 

akescpt

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Aug 12, 2008
Messages
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I am very happy, funds were well spent.
I make sure that I never pay CoJ any more than I absolutely have to, which is around R30-R50 per month. That gives me satisfaction. Plus I can support the neighbours who are not as fortunate as myself, or who have other priorities in their lives (some prefer to drive ostentatiously swanky cars). And my security and communications systems are all up, all of the time, without resorting to multiple point solutions, each demanding their own maintenance and management, and the health risks of tripping over trolleys, extension cords and battery banks. The last bit alone makes it worthwhile.
I learnt a lot through the process, still learning today. Batteries will need replacing in 10 -15 years, and I have a small fund in case anything else goes.
On Eskom, is that a rhetoric question?

Load shedding seems to be experienced only to extort during an application process it seems. Otherwise current demand is lower than usual. Read somewhere that they need 1b/month because of lower demand this year. So I guess if they don’t get it it will be more load shedding.
 

akescpt

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Joined
Aug 12, 2008
Messages
21,769
i started my solar project last year when we had stage 6 load shedding for a day and multiple days of stage 3 and 2.
During summer months I pay CoCT about R50 per month for electricity, my ROI at current electricity prices is about seven years, would I have started the project this year, with the way load shedding being not bad at all, probably would have gone with a trolley/ sine wave inverter/charger

Really tempted to go this way as well. Mercer inverter with a couple vrla’s and be fine with it. But o ponder whether pure sine wave is not better. So a RCT instead.

But then the amount for installs just got me rocking myself to console myself.
 

RonSwanson

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May 21, 2018
Messages
5,129
Load shedding seems to be experienced only to extort during an application process it seems. Otherwise current demand is lower than usual. Read somewhere that they need 1b/month because of lower demand this year. So I guess if they don’t get it it will be more load shedding.
No doubt that Eskom's in huge financial trouble. It's also pretty clear that many are stealing (and not being held accountable, so it's not going to change soon), and there is a whole lot of incompetence and sloth that has become an entrenched culture. So whether workers are using outages as a political tool or not, who knows, governance is poor and therefore it's quite plausible.
 

akescpt

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Aug 12, 2008
Messages
21,769
A stopgap for just load shedding will always work out cheaper initially but there is no savings normally as there would not always be solar panels connected to it. Batteries are for load shedding and recharged from the grid.

I could've just spent R30k on a trolley battery backup system but it would not have any savings. Instead it would just be a money pit in having to replace batteries every 5 to 10 years.

The savings and ROI only comes in when you start generating >10kwh per day. And I'm not even taking into account future tariff increases.

Wow. > 10kwh a day.
 

RonSwanson

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May 21, 2018
Messages
5,129
Really tempted to go this way as well. Mercer inverter with a couple vrla’s and be fine with it. But o ponder whether pure sine wave is not better. So a RCT instead.

But then the amount for installs just got me rocking myself to console myself.
So did I, then I realised that there was more to it, and that I would never be satisfied, always CUS (Compulsive Upgrade Syndrome). Doing the full thing properly means that I have saved thousands on point solutions, little pieces of hardware that don't play well together and need to be pampered, selling them for half price and then upgrading to the next best thing. Saved me a whole lot of time and bother as well.
 
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