Just bought cottage in the wilderness and need help deciding on solar product and set up

JamieO

New Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2021
Messages
4
Hello everyone,

Im Jamie living in Sydney NSW and have just bought a cottage that is remote and in the wilderness.

I have a few quotes that seem so expensive and my dad told me to jump on here as he is a big fan!

I anticipate the cottage will be occupied around 80% ad need it to be large enough to handle most household appliances.

This is the best quote broken down and wondered if I could buy the pieces seperate and do it myself. Also not sure if this is the best solution so any thoughts/guidance and help would be really appreciated.

3.3kW Solar PV Array using 10x JA 330W Premium Mono Panels
· Victron MultiPlus 5KVA/4kW Pure Sine Wave Inverter 48v
· Victron SmartSolar charge controller to suit (250/60)
· Victron Colour Control GX system monitor with online access,
· 8x 230Ah Sealed GEL/AGM Deep cycle maintenance free Batteries 48v (22kWh total /11Wh usable)
· DC Disconnect / Battery Breaker & Fuses to suit
· DC Solar PV breaker
· 5 Metres of Battery Cabling 25mm2 – 4x 1.25m lengths with lugs fitted
· 20 Metres of Solar Cable fitted with solar connectors one end
· Battery series link cables
· Solar Panel racking to suit Tin roof (Tile & Tilt upgrades available)
· Safety Sticker Kit
· Pre wired board with generator plug
5kVa has 4000W max continuous that should handle the loads
Lithium (3 x 3.55kWh Pylontech Batteries).

If anyone can help me I would be s greatful as I ma new to this and not sure as it can be a minefield plus I dont have loads of money so cant afford to get it wrong neither.

Thanks,
 

mrdavvv

Solar Addict
Joined
Jan 14, 2020
Messages
384
Victron are one of the nicest but also more expensive brands in Solar.

If you are handy and have experience with electricity & electronics, and money its a problem.... you can purchase a Growatt or a similar chinese inverter, and build your own battery, that would halve the price, or even less.

Maybe you can outsource the PV side to your local installers, and you can do everything from there wich can be easier. At this point ill stay away from AGM's, since lithium its cheap nowadays and much better for our appplication.

330W panels seem kind of low, >450W are the norm nowadays.
 

DJSmiley

Solar Addict
Joined
Aug 13, 2020
Messages
472
330W panels aren't the highest available, but for the $/wp its (at least here in NL) the sweet spot.

If you have the space, 3x 330-340Wp is slightly cheaper than 2x450W, and with more Wp available.

Depending on your location it might be a good option to setup 2 sides to maximize the usage of the sun. Here in NL, south is the preferred method, but using east-west gives you a much more controllable amount of energy:
Full south gives max performance when the sun is on its highest, With a eg 3kW array you can get 3kW at that moment.
Using 2 stings (East-west) of 2kW will give slightly less performance, but over a longer period. Thus you can make better usage of the solar, and can work with a smaller solar controllor.

As for Lithium: Might be very interesting, based on the DIY prices as seen here. But the commercial options available (Which an installer uses - they don't go the DIY route) are still pretty expensive. Yes, if you take the longer lifetime in consideration, it's getting better than lead already, but the initial costs are $$$

What about temperatures? If you need them to be available during wintertime also, Lead might still be a better option, since you can't charge Lithium below zero. If there is demand in low temperatures you need to look into heating, install the cells inside or whatever.
 

45North

Let it shine!
Joined
Jan 2, 2020
Messages
467
Location
Canada
Since you are down under I'm sure you realize to face the panels N not S.
Also, I don't imagine you need to worry about not charging Li batteries when the temperature is below freezing.
 

chrisski

Solar Boondocker
Joined
Aug 14, 2020
Messages
2,684
I anticipate the cottage will be occupied around 80% ad need it to be large enough to handle most household appliances
Need to translate this into kWh / day. My worst case was about 1800 watt hours overnight. So, with that, I’d need to plan for a system with 3600 watt hours of storage so I could last one cloudy day. You have about 10.5 kWh of battery storage, and if that is FLA, you get half that, and of its lithium, you get nearly all that. So just need to see if the Household appliances require more. If you have overnight Air Conditioning, this may not be enough. Also, with electric water heating and maybe other appliances like a deepe freezer and fridge, dehydrator, that will cut into that storage also,

My idea of household appliances are a lot less than even the people in my family. I don’t want it as cool in the summer or hot in the winter, and my buzz cut does not require a hair drier. Not everyone thinks that way. Those power requirements could easily be filled with a 2.2 kw generator and gas, but solar is so expensive, batteries, panels, inverter, and wiring needs to be planned out quite well And is likely at least 10 times the cost of a generator.

When I look at your kit, a lot of the work seems to have been done, but you’ll still likely need a few odds and ends, like a power board for the inverter.
 
Last edited:

JamieO

New Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2021
Messages
4
Since you are down under I'm sure you realize to face the panels N not S.
Also, I don't imagine you need to worry about not charging Li batteries when the temperature is below freezing.
correct :)
 

JamieO

New Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2021
Messages
4
Thank you for the above comments and insights. I am a bit lost with it all in truth as I don't really understand what the best products and overall solution is that I should be aiming for to purchase in Australia. Is there anyone in this group that is based in Australia that can help and give me some guidance? I would be willing to pay a small consulting fee to ensure I am getting the right solar kit for my needs?
 

chrisski

Solar Boondocker
Joined
Aug 14, 2020
Messages
2,684
If you do a search for ”Australia” you’ll see many members from there.
 

plaidcabin

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
May 3, 2021
Messages
28
instead of spending all your money on a massive bespoke system, try building one of these


If that doesn't suit your needs, add batteries, MPPT's and solar arrays of 3 or 4 panels until it does. That 4000w inverter is a beast. Save you a friggin fortune, mate.

Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries are worth the premium for reputable manufactured batteries, or spend a little time learning how and assemble your own cells. 24v is fantastic, no need to go higher.
 

JamieO

New Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2021
Messages
4
instead of spending all your money on a massive bespoke system, try building one of these


If that doesn't suit your needs, add batteries, MPPT's and solar arrays of 3 or 4 panels until it does. That 4000w inverter is a beast. Save you a friggin fortune, mate.

Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries are worth the premium for reputable manufactured batteries, or spend a little time learning how and assemble your own cells. 24v is fantastic, no need to go higher.
Thanks so much for the wisdom. Really appreciated. Where are you based?
 
Top