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Monday, October 6, 2014

Work arounds



The house solar electric system has a backup connection to the grid. Here's how it works. There's a voltage meter connected to the batteries. When the batteries get low a wall switch can be turned on. That activates a relay. The relay energized a high amperage connection between the grid and inverter. The inverter turns into a charger and tops off the batteries. At the same time an automatic circuit diverts grid power to the electrical panel previously fed from the batteries.

Sounds more complicated than it is.

After a couple cloudy days, plus having guests at the house using more power, the batteries were a bit low. Flipping the wall switch didn't do what it's done for over 20 years. The batteries did not charge up. The problem may be with the relay. I've no idea how old it is. Originally it was part of a alarm system to call firefighters to duty. The relay powered a high power air horn. Probably did that job for many years before I got it. It saw lots of use.

High amperage relay switches cost real money -money that I'd rather spend on other things right now. Fortunately I already own a heavy duty charger. That's been hooked up and plugged in. It has a timer and automatic shut off so it won't overcharge the batteries. The relay issue can be looked investigated in greater detail once my company leaves.

It's good to have options.

-Sixbears


8 comments:

  1. Yes, it is. You're a talented fellow to provide yourself with such systems and alternatives.

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    Replies
    1. Given enough junk lying around it's possible to cobble anything together.

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  2. Always a good idea to have a back up for the back up!

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    Replies
    1. Stuff happens and I live out in the woods.

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  3. Yes, it is very important to have options. The power grids would be high on any terrorist's hit list.

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    1. Now all I need is to get my generator repaired and I'll have another backup.

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  4. heavy duty relay?

    auto starter selenoid

    even do find them on most other engines to crank starters

    not that expensive...

    Wildflower

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    Replies
    1. I'll have to look into that. Thanks.

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