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Tip #9 Consider DC to DC
As opposed to DC to AC to DC
Alternative title: No Inverters Allowed
If you are on a budget, DC to DC is the answer.
Many an off-grid adventurer obtain their panels and batteries, then plug in a large inverter that pulls the voltage created by the batteries allllll the way up to 110v.
However, using a large inverter to handle your entire life's electricity consumption is blindly having faith that the inverter will never break down.
If you simply must have inverters, consider multiple smaller, cheaper units. The larger inverters are outrageously priced, and putting all your energy requirements into one inverter is risky
Similar to the advice to choose micro battery banks over macro, so ought to be your mindset toward inverters. If a micro-inverter ever goes down, simply piggy back to another inverter that is still working. voilà, mom lives!
The loss of a micro-inverter doesn't break a budget to replace.
Whenever possible, utilize DC TO DC, without the phantom
DC to DC is tantamount to zero phantom loss (not counting line-drop due to great distances, or mis-wire-sizing).
Why would you want to charge a battery bank at one voltage, then step the voltage all the way up to 110v, only to have it step-down to the exact voltage you started with?
If it's a 12v appliance that you are needing to power, simply remove the step-down converter, split the wires and shazam....no more potential problems of a step-down converter going bad on you due to popping capacitors or faulty ic's.
Converting electricity from one extreme to the other is needless loss.
This is not to say that inverters aren't necessary for some items and appliances.
There is a 48v battery bank here with a 48v inverter powered by a 48v solar array which has been an upgrade to running the deep freezer off of the 12v battery bank (converting from 12v all the way up to 110v is quite a hit in of itself upon the battery bank).
The advantage of having the freezer and some of the other larger appliances powered by a 48v battery bank as opposed to a 12v bank are instantly noticed.
Even for chores such as maintaining the lawn, I've noticed that the electric weed whacker is definitely out-performing the previous years pulling from a 12v battery bank. The washer spins faster also. The advantages still cannot outweigh the cost for most items though. For instance, if one of the batteries of the required 8 (6v x 8 = 48v) should fail or short-out, the entire bank is down until the problem is remedied. Whereas in a 12v bank, I merely pull it's partner battery in the series connection and go back to weed whacking (6v x 2 = 12v).
Another potential disaster is the "what-if" scenario.
It's no easy task for an old person to rearrange batteries, or rearrange wiring, to obtain some voltage that is needed at the time.
In other words, if the 48v battery bank is completely down, I can't even readily connect 12v items in a pinch, rather it ends up being an all-nighter, or some other similar major undertaking.
The 48v conversion (solar, battery, inverter, and controller) was entirely completed in 12hours of straight unadulterated work.
One thing led to another and before you knew it, I was replacing all the wiring for 4gauge/awg).
As luck would have it, the conversion process of changing for larger wiring had alerted me to a problem that otherwise may have gone undetected for many more months. One of the feed wires from the quick-disconnect was black and burned, the jacket of the wire was blackened and melted, and in all there were about an inch of affected wire.
Oh yeah, before I forget, AS A HEADS-UP TO ALL SPRINGFIELD AND BEYOND!
Batteries Plus is a much appreciated business in that they make batteries readily available.
H O W E V E R , It is not appreciated after having invested so much money into their "duracell" overpriced deep-cycle batteries, that they are fakes.
I would be drawn into court in a second if I were lying.
Duracell Deep Cycle Batteries are deceptively being sold with the Duracell label. I found out about this scam due to the need to ascertain the PWM of the sligc125 batteries they sold me. The Batteries Plus agent didn't know so I called Duracell (which you can also do to verify this fact). Duracell stated that the batteries are not made by them and that Batteries PLUS simply bought the label (WHATEVER THE HE that means). BUT THE PLOT THICKENS! I then called back to Batteries Plus and this time an agent pointed me to Deka Battery's website stating that Deka actually makes the battery that is labelled as Duracell sold by Batteries Plus!
If I wanted a Dekka Battery I would have purchased a Dekka Battery.
Deception is criminal when the upper elites are busy judging our every move and thought, yet when BUSINESS is involved these days, it's a virtually untouchable matter unless you have many hours to toss your life toward in stopping the deceptive practices of business.
Imagine if this scenario played out at our level, me to you for instance. If you came to me and purchased a Dell computer, and I even tell you in the sales pitch it's a Dell computer, and the label in the front of the computer is an authentic dell computer emblem, wouldn't you be completely beside yourself if much later you found it to be a crappy-brand-computer and not a Dell? I'm not saying scams like this don't exist at the street-level of the class system, but what example does business or polity (or the ever-present judiciary) set to the rest of us by these deceptive practices? What does one tell the next generation, Don't steal or Defraud others (and then mum's the word when the upper class is doling out just that)?
This is the myopia of business in 2018. My advice to business would be, "kick rocks", time's are tough for all of us but to lose all of us would be the loss of all business. The adage "You never know a good thing till its gone" applies. It may not be great, but its still better than you're going to find with US gone. (*I actually am paraphrasing Revelations, primarily the part of what happens to the whore that runs off to the desert place...in short, it would have been better had they died with the rest of us).
Bad business begets bad business. Changing names is deceptive (and USED to be illegal).
Duracell Contact Number: 800.300.1857 (there might be a better number on google)
Verified Fraudulent Batteries: SLIGC125 and the sli6v305s
Is it open-season on Americans?
Easy Terms Conversion Charts
Since it's much easier to relate to the charging states of a 48v battery bank in terms of a 12v scale, the 12v equivalents to 48v common voltages are:
Without a printout on 3x5 cards my last brain cell was being taxed when needing the state of the bank at a glance.
**If you are using an MPPT (maximum power-point tracking/technology) there will also be an EQUALIZATION mode available to you. At present, I'm using 15.3 (in 12v terminology) as my equalization mark. The true voltage at this point is 15.3 x 4= 61.2 volts
In October 2018 a 24v battery bank was added here (now 3 are 12v banks, 1 is 24v, and 1 is 48v). Here is the conversion chart if equating the state of the 24v battery bank is too confusing.
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