Setup suggestions for off-grid shed

sandman_01

New Member
Joined
Apr 1, 2022
Messages
1
I have a 12x16 storage shed that was positioned too far from the house to bother running electrical, but I'd really like to learn about solar and so I'm going to use the shed as an excuse. I'm smart enough to read and research but sometimes it helps to put thoughts out there for review and suggestions. I'm not a novice DIYer but I am new to solar setups.

Uses:
-Shed lighting - LED overhead lighting, workbench lighting, motion sensing exterior LED flood lamp
-120v outlets for power tools and tool battery chargers
-shallow well pump (120v, ~1hp) for lawn irrigation
-a few pole mounted driveway lights (limited use, likely on a timer)
-random other equipment (holiday lights/lasers?)

Additional requirements:
-Would like to have the ability to tie my gas generator to the system for battery charging/additional load capacity/poor weather ops
-Want to be able to expand battery capacity at a later date

What I have so far:
-8 cell EG4 100ah (24v) battery w/ Overkill solar BMS

Questions:
-Does an all-in-one solution like https://watts247.com/product/hybrid-lv2424/ make the most sense if there's no need to move or reconfigure? Do combo units like this require being tied to power to run or can they run completely off battery?
-Will temps in CT make charging difficult in the winter (LiFePO4)
-Are small wind turbines worth it? Our property gets a fair share of steady wind
-Anything other considerations I'm forgetting? I'm really just looking for mild functionality with the option for future expansion. I won't be working out of the shed constantly, mostly weekend projects. Many of the lighting ideas I have are not requirements, but if feasible I figure might as well power via solar instead of running up my utilities.
 

WYtreasure

It's not happy hour, I'm just like this.
Joined
Nov 23, 2021
Messages
1,692
Location
Thunder Basin Wyoming
Welcome to the party sandman 01.

The controller looks good to me. I do not know what you are referring to as far as "move or reconfigure". I think it will run completely off the battery, as many AIO (All In One) units do. Let us know what the manual says.
Temps will affect LiFePO4 charging. There are a number of ways to keep your battery warm though.
Wind turbines, need wind and most folks don't get enough.
What will your city or county say about your new solar system?
 

MichaelK

Photon Sorcerer
Joined
Mar 21, 2020
Messages
2,132
Until I got down to "well-pump" on your list, I though this would be easy. You first need to understand the scale at which you are working with. Lights and chargers are likely to use tens of watts, power tools hundreds of watts, and pumps thousands of watts. The scale of the solar system goes up with the scale of what you are trying to power. Here is a pump chart that outlines power consumption. As you can see in the chart, your specs don't seem to match any real-world pump that I know of? So either it isn't 1hp, or it isn't 120V? You need to determine this. Let's assume it's 1/2hp at 120V? That appears to be about 12 running amps, so at 120V that's 1440W.

So, you can see how scale is important. Your lights might consume 14W, an electric drill maybe 140W, but your pump 1440W; two orders of magnitude difference. So, you have some decisions to make. Either you scale up your system to run what you want it to run, or scale it back to run what you can afford?

As a general rule, AiO units have little or no surge capacity, so they are only good for things like lights and electronics. They are not good at starting things with big electrical motors that have big starting surges. You can get an idea of what those are referring back to the chart. Look for a heavy low-frequency transformer based inverter for running your motor-driven tools.

For everything except the well-pump, I'd say a 24V system with a 200-400Ah battery, a ≥2000W inverter, and 750-1500W of panels. Scale appropriately higher for the well-pump, once you find out what the real specifications are?
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