Need 240 Volt Inverter Recommendation For Well Pump

Birdog

New Member
Good Lord some of you are so full of yourself. treating people like that is a good way to get them to go to other forums there by hurting the forumowner who provides this little arena that you like to preen yourself in.

To the OP: Get a killowatt and do a power audit. there are threads that explain this. search: how to do a power audit?

Once you have those numbers you can move onto the next stage which would be asking for suggestions on an inverter to power what you have (or possibly what you plan to have if upgrades are on the horizon.)

From their would be determining size of battery bank to power (how many hours/days/?? without solar input or genset running.

Last would be size of PV array to charge said batteries. what time frame, location of array solar inclination etc.
Thanks, K. I appreciate that.

I've been looking at assembled systems. They don't look to be much higher than just the components, they're just heavy. Even so I can work around that. During the summer in Texas I estimate we use about 60kwh a day. Thats pretty much just adding (2) window unit ac's to my winter consumption. I'm leaning toward the system in the attached link. Don't know if there are cons to stacking in my case. Right now we power the house just fine in the summer with a 7kw generator and in the winter we do it with a 5kw. Our big power surge is the well pump (230v split phase) but I estimate its only on around 40 mins a day, tops. Inverters seem to have much higher surge capacity than a typical generator so that's a plus. What I'm struggling with is total amp hour of battery storage that I need, and the number of panels. I'm leaning toward (16) 330w panels and (8) 48v batteries (amp hours / brand, etc. to be determined). I have plenty of space in the pasture and could bump to more panels and batteries if need be.

Thanks again for the positive feedback. I've found this site to be quite helpful and the people very patient with my ignerntz.


GO ASTROS!
 

ken morgan

Solar Addict
Thanks, K. I appreciate that.

I've been looking at assembled systems. They don't look to be much higher than just the components, they're just heavy. Even so I can work around that. During the summer in Texas I estimate we use about 60kwh a day. Thats pretty much just adding (2) window unit ac's to my winter consumption. I'm leaning toward the system in the attached link. Don't know if there are cons to stacking in my case. Right now we power the house just fine in the summer with a 7kw generator and in the winter we do it with a 5kw. Our big power surge is the well pump (230v split phase) but I estimate its only on around 40 mins a day, tops. Inverters seem to have much higher surge capacity than a typical generator so that's a plus. What I'm struggling with is total amp hour of battery storage that I need, and the number of panels. I'm leaning toward (16) 330w panels and (8) 48v batteries (amp hours / brand, etc. to be determined). I have plenty of space in the pasture and could bump to more panels and batteries if need be.

Thanks again for the positive feedback. I've found this site to be quite helpful and the people very patient with my ignerntz.


GO ASTROS!
Long post sorry;

is that 60kwh over the course of the day fairly even or is it concentrated during certain times of the day? Regardless that magnum setup should take care of your power needs. and you could always get another and parallel it along with the other two if you decided you needed more juice.

I think that if you go to an above ground storage tank like you were thinking that a system similar to this should be good to go. You could set a timer to only pump water at a certain time to fill the tank...like in the middle of the solar day when you have excess charge capacity.

Only question I have is how adjustable are the magnum solar controllers? a quick scan of their manual showed no presets for lithium, and no ability to custom program. (I only quick scanned the manual) I use magnum inverters but a different make of solar controller. You need one that is completely adjustable to match the battery chemistry you eventually choose.

the reason i bring this up is that if you are hanging out on this forum...you might as well go lithium battery pack. The guy that runs this forum tinkers for the sake of tinkering and has figured out 95% of the pitfalls, what he did not figure out others have and the data is readily available.

I am assuming (we know the adage about that), that you are not that familiar with batteries and inverters. That being said...

Currently if you buy commodity cells and build your own battery pack its cheaper than buying lead acid or AGM (in the long run) I just replaced my 600 A/H AGM bank with a 400 A/H lithium bank. It runs circles around the AGM's at about the same price point. while flooded lead acid are cheaper the maintenance requirements are a heck of a lot more stringent then AGM or LiFePo4 packs. most AGM last 3-5 years where as we have users on the forum that have crossed the 10 year mark (some more it appears) on lithium's.. and that was after they first came out and the bugs were not well known.

it seems to me that a 800 A/H (40Kw) battery bank should carry you day to day with especially if you go with the amount of panels you mentioned above. but that gives you nothing if you have several days that are rainy in a row, Oh and Most inverters do not like dirty power from a genset so make sure its clean if you are going to hook it up to the inverters to charge batteries.

but as before an energy audit is important. if you have a meter reading for the amount of power you have consumed daily that would work as well. assuming that your 7Kw genset was running at full capacity 24 hours a day that's a lot more than 60Kwh per day

also its cheaper to save electricity then it is to make it. LED lights all of them (and they are not all equal) a new high efficiency Refrigerator/freezer, no electric heat, use wood, propane, coal what not but not electricity. gas water heater, gas stove/range etc. etc.

R

Ken
 

Just John

Photon Sorcerer
Thanks, K. I appreciate that.

I've been looking at assembled systems. They don't look to be much higher than just the components, they're just heavy. Even so I can work around that. During the summer in Texas I estimate we use about 60kwh a day. Thats pretty much just adding (2) window unit ac's to my winter consumption. I'm leaning toward the system in the attached link. Don't know if there are cons to stacking in my case. Right now we power the house just fine in the summer with a 7kw generator and in the winter we do it with a 5kw. Our big power surge is the well pump (230v split phase) but I estimate its only on around 40 mins a day, tops. Inverters seem to have much higher surge capacity than a typical generator so that's a plus. What I'm struggling with is total amp hour of battery storage that I need, and the number of panels. I'm leaning toward (16) 330w panels and (8) 48v batteries (amp hours / brand, etc. to be determined). I have plenty of space in the pasture and could bump to more panels and batteries if need be.

Thanks again for the positive feedback. I've found this site to be quite helpful and the people very patient with my ignerntz.


GO ASTROS!
The Magnums have a good reputation, but I don't personally know that. Northern Arizona Wind and Sun also have a good reputation (and I have purchased from them). Basically, with inverters being heavy is a good indication of surge capability. The lightweight cheap ones don't have much, the heavy expensive ones do. That does look like a good set, but I'm not an expert.

It's probably a good idea to invest in a cheap kill-a-watt style meter to see what some things use during a normal day. Be forewarned, just because it says it supports "up to 16 amps", you are likely to wind up with a melted meter if you run it over 10 for long. I've used this one, since it retains cumulative use data after it is unplugged:


The batteries, if you can, I'd go LiFePO4, but don't let them freeze. All sorts of free help getting batteries assembled here.
The cheaper surge meter I've already posted, it could give you a good idea how much surge capacity you need for that pump.

How many panels, and how much battery you need really depends on what your actual use is, hard to determine without measuring.
 

Birdog

New Member
The Magnums have a good reputation, but I don't personally know that. Northern Arizona Wind and Sun also have a good reputation (and I have purchased from them). Basically, with inverters being heavy is a good indication of surge capability. The lightweight cheap ones don't have much, the heavy expensive ones do. That does look like a good set, but I'm not an expert.

It's probably a good idea to invest in a cheap kill-a-watt style meter to see what some things use during a normal day. Be forewarned, just because it says it supports "up to 16 amps", you are likely to wind up with a melted meter if you run it over 10 for long. I've used this one, since it retains cumulative use data after it is unplugged:


The batteries, if you can, I'd go LiFePO4, but don't let them freeze. All sorts of free help getting batteries assembled here.
The cheaper surge meter I've already posted, it could give you a good idea how much surge capacity you need for that pump.

How many panels, and how much battery you need really depends on what your actual use is, hard to determine without measuring.
Looks like without the ac units I'm at 14 kwh / 24 hours.
 

Just John

Photon Sorcerer
Looks like without the ac units I'm at 14 kwh / 24 hours.
FYI, this is a place with good cheap panels if you don't already have them. Some of their used ones are a really good deal, but can't be mounted on a dwelling due to the labels being removed, but I haven't heard anyone complain about what they purchased.



But of course shipping can be a problem, however if you are purchasing a pallet load, they are a really good deal.
 

ken morgan

Solar Addict
Looks like without the ac units I'm at 14 kwh / 24 hours.
so just spit balling, how hot is it at night? can you shut one AC down and leave the other running? (bedroom vs living room for instance?)

14kw/h no air conditioning and you would need roughly a 300-400 a/h lithium battery bank (double for lead acid) to power the house for one day with no solar input and not running the a/c. the panels you mentioned would produce about 5200 watts so 3-4 hours would top the battery off. once again with no a/c. these are all rough estimates based on 14Kw/h.

I would guess you might need to double the battery bank to about 800 a/h (40Kw/h) and add more panels to shoot for about 8000 watts of panels if you want to run the a/c. the extra panels will power the a/c in the daytime without draining the batteries and allow the batteries to charge as well.

Running air conditioning 24-7 I would seriously look at ways to lower my power consumption. first and foremost. I would also have an a/c & r tech look at the a/c's to see if they have soft start tech and if not look into how to add it. (same for the water pump). converting to a soft start for compressors and pumps has been listed in several threads at the NAWS forums and I am sure its been mentioned on this one as well, while this does not save energy per se, it lowers the inrush current and makes it easier on your inverters.

mind you these are all back of envelope estimates and several of the members here as well as members at NAWS forum have a lock on calculating this stuff. check out the cat at NAWS forum whose screen title is " BB " he crunch's numbers for the fun of it, and is always willing to help crunch numbers for new folks.

R

Ken
 

Birdog

New Member
Ken tonight the low will be 75° with 88% humidity, SE winds @2. I'm sure the real feel will easily be 80°+. The house is 25x75 with bedrooms on each end. The ac's are in each bedroom. One room is small and has a new window unit that soft starts. It surges at 4.9 and runs at 4.2. The other bedroom is a 20x25 room and the ac is old. It has no rating sticker that I can find and surges to 18, runs at 9. Kitchen and family rooms are in middle of the house, bathroom on end by small bedroom. All of those rooms are cooled by the 2 window units.

I haven't factored in any increased capacity for surges because the inverters advertise surge capacities well beyond my needs. My generator is rated at 8200 surge and that's sufficient. The inverter data sheet says 8500, and I'll have two of them.

As I plow through this, in my mind, I'm assuming that if I'm able to pretty much power the house off panels in summertime daytime, I'd be looking for generator support for charging batteries and powering the house at night. Not sure how long the battery charge takes. And BTW I'm not married to any brand of generator. I assume I'll be using an inverter generator. My thoughts are that, theoretically, if I design for mid summer, and if I charged batteries at night on the gen, then my gen usage
would drop to 25% of my current usage, or less. That assumes on all night during half the year, which I hope is a high estimate. It's not a "no carbon footprint", but hopefully it'll get me down to "cow fart" pollution status and keep AOC and The Bern from cancelling me.

Replacing the old ac is on my to do list but it's built into the wall and the dimensions are hard to match. So it's probably going to take some wall carpentry modifications. I'm reluctant to mess with it until it gets a little cooler outside.

And in closing let me add this for others on this thread. EVERY person that has responded to this thread has given me excellent information and has helped me along my journey immensely. I've learned more on this site than from any other resource I have found. Nowhere along the way have I felt slammed or butthurt. I started this journey as a potlicker and all of you have helped to make me... well, I'm still a policker just not as big of one as I was.

Thanks to all!
 

A.Justice

Swears he didn't start that fire.
I can tell you, if his generator is a modified sine wave, a Kill-a-Watt meter won't last very long. Anything with an electric motor, you can hear the difference, and it likely will contribute to an early pump death.
I killed my Kill-a-Watt using an uninterruptible power supply that was modified sine. Took maybe 15 seconds before it froze and shut off permanently.
 

ken morgan

Solar Addict
Ken tonight the low will be 75° with 88% humidity, SE winds @2. I'm sure the real feel will easily be 80°+. The house is 25x75 with bedrooms on each end. The ac's are in each bedroom. One room is small and has a new window unit that soft starts. It surges at 4.9 and runs at 4.2. The other bedroom is a 20x25 room and the ac is old. It has no rating sticker that I can find and surges to 18, runs at 9. Kitchen and family rooms are in middle of the house, bathroom on end by small bedroom. All of those rooms are cooled by the 2 window units.



That assumes on all night during half the year, which I hope is a high estimate. It's not a "no carbon footprint", but hopefully it'll get me down to "cow fart" pollution status and keep AOC and The Bern from cancelling me.

Thanks to all!
"It's not a "no carbon footprint", but hopefully it'll get me down to "cow fart" pollution status and keep AOC and The Bern from cancelling me." ;) ha ha ha good luck if you are a middle aged white male!

below is a rant so I will finish my original thought an you can laugh at my rant afterwords.

remember panels are cheaper than batteries, get enough panels and you can run your house and charge the batteries in the day time. only use the genset when you have several days of cloudy nastiness.

Honestly carbon footprint be damned, I do it to get power to my cabin and in reality no matter how much some people like to yack about it solar power, wind power, even in stream hydro generators use a metric shit ton of coal fired power plants to power the factories that make them. Then their is the recycling aspect..... The only even remotely clean energy is nuclear as its total carbon costs are totally offset by the amount of power it eventually makes with no fossil fuels, and even it while being built needs fossil fuels. It is just that the various countries that have nuclear power can not get it sunk into their pea brains that if they do not follow the guidelines originally set by the US navy for Nuke power they will have disasters.

With the lack of prosecution of people what motivation is there to follow the rules in a Nuke power plant? tell them (and actually enforce) that they could get thrown in jail for the rest of their natural born days just like the nuke freaks in the navy and you will see them unscrew themselves with some vigor and vim! but I digress you nor I can afford our very own nuke power plant so we have to diddle along with solar.
 

Birdog

New Member
"It's not a "no carbon footprint", but hopefully it'll get me down to "cow fart" pollution status and keep AOC and The Bern from cancelling me." ;) ha ha ha good luck if you are a middle aged white male!

below is a rant so I will finish my original thought an you can laugh at my rant afterwords.

remember panels are cheaper than batteries, get enough panels and you can run your house and charge the batteries in the day time. only use the genset when you have several days of cloudy nastiness.

Honestly carbon footprint be damned, I do it to get power to my cabin and in reality no matter how much some people like to yack about it solar power, wind power, even in stream hydro generators use a metric shit ton of coal fired power plants to power the factories that make them. Then their is the recycling aspect..... The only even remotely clean energy is nuclear as its total carbon costs are totally offset by the amount of power it eventually makes with no fossil fuels, and even it while being built needs fossil fuels. It is just that the various countries that have nuclear power can not get it sunk into their pea brains that if they do not follow the guidelines originally set by the US navy for Nuke power they will have disasters.

With the lack of prosecution of people what motivation is there to follow the rules in a Nuke power plant? tell them (and actually enforce) that they could get thrown in jail for the rest of their natural born days just like the nuke freaks in the navy and you will see them unscrew themselves with some vigor and vim! but I digress you nor I can afford our very own nuke power plant so we have to diddle along with solar.
I love it! I may have to start grading rants, as long as I can compete.

I spent my whole career selling, installing, and designing refractory systems in everything from kilns that fat ladies fire praying Jesus hands in, to state of the art chemical plant furnaces running 3300F. Power plants too. Regrettably I don't believe there's such a thing as clean coal, but I've never seen areas adjacent to coal plants that showed signs of acid rain. The CO2 and ash waste are problematic in my mind, although one of my customers (NRG) was capturing waste CO2 gas at the stack and piping it 90 miles to pump in old well sites. Even so, most, if not all, of the newer coal fired boilers can run on nat gas and probably do nowadays. And in a chemical plant ethylene furnace making milk jug plastic, the furnace has an internall temp of 3300F at the burners. The refractory is pure, ceramic in some instances. But exhaust heat at the stack is in the neighborhood of +300F hotter than ambient. Not any worse than a bbq pit. Modern furnaces suck heat at the stack, send it to the floor, inject new air into it and mix it with the fuel gas, thereby using the waste heat to preheat the air going into the burners. The net result is less gas used to heat the fuel at the burners .

Not sure where I'm going with that except to say I think the US is trying to do it's parts. Not so much those commie bastards Russia and China.

But I digress :). Thank you for that statement about more panels. Panels ARE cheaper than batteries! I have the space and for some reason was trying to limit my install to 16 panels. Now you've got me rethinking my thinking which I'm thinking it good thinking :)

All I need to do it put up a bigger golf ball blocking net. It's not that I aim for that area. It's that my balls aren't smart enuff to stay away from stuff I'm not aiming at.

... the Dude abides...
 

ken morgan

Solar Addict
H
I love it! I may have to start grading rants, as long as I can compete.

I spent my whole career selling, installing, and designing refractory systems in everything from kilns that fat ladies fire praying Jesus hands in, to state of the art chemical plant furnaces running 3300F. Power plants too. Regrettably I don't believe there's such a thing as clean coal, but I've never seen areas adjacent to coal plants that showed signs of acid rain. The CO2 and ash waste are problematic in my mind, although one of my customers (NRG) was capturing waste CO2 gas at the stack and piping it 90 miles to pump in old well sites. Even so, most, if not all, of the newer coal fired boilers can run on nat gas and probably do nowadays. And in a chemical plant ethylene furnace making milk jug plastic, the furnace has an internall temp of 3300F at the burners. The refractory is pure, ceramic in some instances. But exhaust heat at the stack is in the neighborhood of +300F hotter than ambient. Not any worse than a bbq pit. Modern furnaces suck heat at the stack, send it to the floor, inject new air into it and mix it with the fuel gas, thereby using the waste heat to preheat the air going into the burners. The net result is less gas used to heat the fuel at the burners .

Not sure where I'm going with that except to say I think the US is trying to do it's parts. Not so much those commie bastards Russia and China.

But I digress :). Thank you for that statement about more panels. Panels ARE cheaper than batteries! I have the space and for some reason was trying to limit my install to 16 panels. Now you've got me rethinking my thinking which I'm thinking it good thinking :)

All I need to do it put up a bigger golf ball blocking net. It's not that I aim for that area. It's that my balls aren't smart enuff to stay away from stuff I'm not aiming at.

... the Dude abides...
Yes the Dude abide. :)
 

rhino

Solar Addict
Relating to the original post, if your only 240v load is the well pump I'd check what the cost of replacing it with a high quality 120V pump like a Grundfos would be compared to adding the complexity or risk with trying to run it with a 120/240V renewable energy system.
 

Guido1

New Member
Thanks, K. I appreciate that.

I've been looking at assembled systems. They don't look to be much higher than just the components, they're just heavy. Even so I can work around that. During the summer in Texas I estimate we use about 60kwh a day. Thats pretty much just adding (2) window unit ac's to my winter consumption. I'm leaning toward the system in the attached link. Don't know if there are cons to stacking in my case. Right now we power the house just fine in the summer with a 7kw generator and in the winter we do it with a 5kw. Our big power surge is the well pump (230v split phase) but I estimate its only on around 40 mins a day, tops. Inverters seem to have much higher surge capacity than a typical generator so that's a plus. What I'm struggling with is total amp hour of battery storage that I need, and the number of panels. I'm leaning toward (16) 330w panels and (8) 48v batteries (amp hours / brand, etc. to be determined). I have plenty of space in the pasture and could bump to more panels and batteries if need be.

Thanks again for the positive feedback. I've found this site to be quite helpful and the people very patient with my ignerntz.


GO ASTROS!
Hello, Birdog

I get this feeling you may be a Houston-area ol' boy.
Me too, at least officially for a couple more weeks. I'm fixin' to be a bona-fide East Texas porch honky. Just sold the Katy-area crib last weekend.

I'm a total novice, moreso than you because I have yet to assemble an actual solar system, other than my solar-powered gate operator on this place in the country.
I'm in the same arena as you, in a sense. The two critical things to ensure power to on our little ranch are the 370' pump depth well, and the AC/heat pump, in that order. There is a thread here that focuses on well pumps and solar, primarily 3 phase pumps via VFD. It's a very informative thread for anybody contemplating solarizing their well pump(s). I'm now looking for a 3 phase 1-1/2 hp pump driver and a Variable Frequency Drive unit to control it.

https://diysolarforum.com/threads/t...phase-ac-pumps-for-solar-water-pumping.22876/

-Guido
Houston/Athens TX
 
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