please help! New panels putting out very little energy

Texas-Mark

Solar Addict
I ifinally attached the two batteries in series to the inverter/controller. I have no idea if this is how it should read or not. It doesnt tell me how charged the batteries are and I would think it should.

That is a good sign that the unit is at least partly working. Try plugging in a small load (like a lamp or something) to the AC receptacles to make sure it's actually outputting.

Next step connect at least one panel to see if it shows the PV side working.
 

Gracie8

New Member
That is a good sign that the unit is at least partly working. Try plugging in a small load (like a lamp or something) to the AC receptacles to make sure it's actually outputting.

Next step connect at least one panel to see if it shows the PV side working.
It ran my drill. hoping to hook up panels to the combi box soon.
 

Don B. Cilly

Energetic energy padawan
It doesnt tell me how charged the batteries are and I would think it should.

It should, but it really doesn't seem to have any voltage - or any other kind of - indicator for them.
Unless the display cycles/changes - which it doesn't look like it does.
Just put a voltmeter as close as possible to the batteries - possibly a decently precise one. They're still cheap.
 

Gracie8

New Member
It should, but it really doesn't seem to have any voltage - or any other kind of - indicator for them.
Unless the display cycles/changes - which it doesn't look like it does.
Just put a voltmeter as close as possible to the batteries - possibly a decently precise one. They're still cheap.
 

Gracie8

New Member
I have it all hooked up in parallel. I put a multi-meter on the 6 gauge wires in the combi box and read about 36v. Then looking at the readout on the inverter/controller it reads out at about 36v. It's fluctuating between 2-4a.

Pete, the guy who designed it and drew me a diagram to hook it all up, said it be around 36v at the combi box but would drop to around 24v on the read out on the inverter/controller. But I didn't get any drop at all. Is this a problem? There is a breaker box between the combi and the controller.

I think the batteries may have come fully charged and I have had them for just a few weeks. So that read out probably is what it looks like when the batteries are charged.

The controller/ inverter box is running cool and quiet.

It's very overcast today with smoke completely covering the sky, again.
 

Bud Martin

Photon Sorcerer
Does the controller have buttons for you to scroll the display to see other the parameters, I.E. Battery Voltage and Charging current?
The display you are seeing right now is not showing the Battery Voltage or charging current.
 

Gracie8

New Member
Does the controller have buttons for you to scroll the display to see other the parameters, I.E. Battery Voltage and Charging current?
The display you are seeing right now is not showing the Battery Voltage or charging current.
It doesn't seem to. I am guessing the last image on the screen is a gauge and If I ran the batteries down that might change. We'll see. Does the voltage seem right given overcast and 94 degrees? Here's some pictures. A full shot of the front of the box and 2 pictures of screen while running my drill the read out switches from amps to volts read out evey 30 seconds or so:
 

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Don B. Cilly

Energetic energy padawan
I meant put a permanent voltmeter there. Something like this, $10 or less on Amazon:
51jzoYQbd7L._AC_UL320_.jpg


Me, I would also put an analog ammeter between the panels and the controller. Like:

amm.jpg

Just as cheap. Vastly superior to digital, for many reasons. Try it, you'll like it :)
 

Texas-Mark

Solar Addict
I am guessing the last image on the screen is a gauge and If I ran the batteries down that might change

I could be wrong, but I think that last image of a gauge shows how much you are pulling from the inverter. The closer to the top, the closer to maxing out the inverter.

In any case, it does appear the solar input is working.
 
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