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Thread: How much should I get out of my panels?

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    Default How much should I get out of my panels?

    I've had my solar panels installed for about 2 months now. Its a 1.5kW system, made up of 6 x 250W panels using an Aero-Sharp invertor.

    After that time its generated about 94 Kw but I'm wondering if it should be more.

    My panels don't face direct North so I know that means its going to produce a bit less.
    The electrician who installed it wrote on the meter box:
    359.4v Open Circuit Voltage.

    When even I look at the invertor is never really gets about about 250-260v and around 800 W.
    When it was first installed (just the panel and invertor before the meters in the switch board went in, I'm sure I was getting a reading of about 320v on the invertor (my memory could be wrong but thats what I thought it was).
    Based on that I'm a little concerned that perhaps one of my solar panels isn't working. Around 10am-12pm is when the sun is the highest and brightest over my solar panels and these are the kind of values I'm getting... on rainy cloudy days its lot less, but this seems to be my maximum.

    So what I'm wondering, what are others getting on their invertors/panels with similar sized setups? When the sun is in its highest and brightest I would have expected much higher readings. I know in Summer its supposed to better for solar panels, but I'm a little worried to wait that long if something is wrong, then thats a lot of wasted money. All the companies normally say that you'll average around 7-8Kw per day and I'm getting half that, unless I'm going to get 12 Kw in summer which will average out the winter months?

    Typical Readings on the invertor at the sunniest time of the day:
    Vpv1 256v
    Pout 812W
    Total today 3.2Kw

    Thanks



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  • #2
    Senior Member mutanti's Avatar
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    well mine is a 1 KW system and its been on since 6th June and I only got 30kw on the Meter. Going to ring them and see what is going on. have been told by severalpeople it should have heaps more..
    Panels facing North good sun around here although its been on 50% on the 1200 Inverter a lot recently with the winter..
    Last edited by mutanti; 08-08-10 at 08:24 PM.

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    Where are you shonkster? Here in tropical Mackay we total about 3.7 kw per day with a 1 kw system on a sunny day. But if you're down the bottom of AU then you would get less.

    @Mutanti, that averages only 500 watts per day. That's what we get with thick overcast cloud and rain. Something don't sound right if that's all you're producing.
    Last edited by Learjet; 08-08-10 at 08:21 PM.

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    Junior Member Bluedog's Avatar
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    quote:
    When it was first installed (just the panel and invertor before the meters in the switch board went in, I'm sure I was getting a reading of about 320v on the invertor (my memory could be wrong but thats what I thought it was).
    unquote
    ok, thats when it wasnt connected to the grid , hence it was the unloaded voltage you were seeing. unloaded volts compared to volts under load is quite different.

    I have a 1.4kw array charging 2000 amphour 24v battery bank and kept clean it works well.

    in a grid connected system where all the panels are in series it doenst take much to reduce its output.
    simple things like a single leaf partially covering just one of the cells in one of the panels, or a splatter of bird$#!t, or bat poo. some fungus or mossy thing growing (sometimes they appear as spots), or a small shadow from a stick, tv antenna pole, overhead power wire etc during the day.

    another thing: when the panels are installed they will usually have the makers name and serial number details etc up at the top under the glass. there is usually a gap between the edge of the panel frame and the edge of the silicon of about 20mm.
    however on the bottom of the panel there is no such gap , hence if you get a small leaf , buildup of moss/debris/dust etc it will partially block the bottom row of cells in each panel unless its cleaned off regularly using a soft kitchen broom and a bucket of water.

    the other way is to invert all the panels so there is plenty of gap at the bottom of each panel so the buildup of stuff doesnt obscure the bottom row of cells.

    get on the roof, have a look at your panels carefully especially along the bottom of the glass on each one, check also for possible obstructions in the sky that may partially obscure even just a single cell, bearing in mind during winter the sun is at a lowish angle even at midday.
    cheers from the bush
    member. Austech dog squad: if it can be fixed the dogs will sniff it out

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    I'm in Sydney..... Today was a good day.. for me anyway... I got about 4.5 Kw out of the system...
    I'll have to get up there and maybe give them a wipe down... it probably doesn't take long for them to get a build up of dust on them....
    My panels are facing NE (not the best) and I have big trees NW (another bad thing)which shade the panels in the afternoon.
    Eagly waiting for summer when the sun is higher and might get over the trees a bit more...

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    1kw/hr system near perth wa, midday 850w, daily avg since beginng of may about 3.4kw/hrs

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    i made this site to answer this very question needs more members though

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    Farmsky (21-08-10)

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    Senior Member mutanti's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Learjet View Post
    Where are you shonkster? Here in tropical Mackay we total about 3.7 kw per day with a 1 kw system on a sunny day. But if you're down the bottom of AU then you would get less.

    @Mutanti, that averages only 500 watts per day. That's what we get with thick overcast cloud and rain. Something don't sound right if that's all you're producing.
    They say we have more sunnier days here than in Queensland.
    I would expect from possibly 3 to 7 KW a day here.
    I def think something not right...

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    Quote Originally Posted by mutanti View Post
    They say we have more sunnier days here than in Queensland.
    I would expect from possibly 3 to 7 KW a day here.
    I def think something not right...
    I think the max from a 1kw system would be about 4kw per day unless you have tracking. Have a look next sunny day. If it's less than 3kw, check for obstructions as bluedog mentions.

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    solar panel output also reduces when they get real hot too.

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    1.05kw system here. west facing. running since feb. 346kw into meter.

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    oops in melbourne i should add.

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    948w at 11.15 clear sky near perth 1.1kw/hr setup
    Last edited by anyone; 21-08-10 at 02:25 PM.

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    i added some pics and csv files so you can see out put every 10 mins

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    Senior Member Farmsky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by didgydont View Post
    I made this site to answer this very question. Needs more members though
    Nice site didgydont.

    Thankyou.

    The two 1.5Kw systems with long term data (one in QLD and one in ) show 4.3kWh and 4.53kWh daily over the last 90 and 50 days respectively.

    Edit:

    I do like the Average Kwh/Kw figure.

    Including didgydont's 3.24kW system this gives figures of:

    1.5kW - Wongary Qld: 2.81 kWh/day per panel kW
    1.5kW - Sydney, NSW: 2.96 kWh/day per panel kW
    3.24kW - Geelong: 2.46 kWh/day per panel kW
    Last edited by Farmsky; 22-08-10 at 08:22 AM.

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    Just noticed some other bastard stole my idea i was running for over 3 months and the registed this month but i must admit the layout is much better and it looks like where my members have gone. so check it out.

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    But you can't sort the blessed thing and no number of 'days recording' or kWh/kW.

    I like your face page better.
    Last edited by Farmsky; 22-08-10 at 09:55 AM.

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    i wont stop work then

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