If you are looking for a BIG energy off grid system that can be built under $10,000 then you are up for some good news, you have just found it!
As always, if you need guidance on how to install your own off grid solar system at home by yourself then make sure that you read our step-by-step guide on how to do it yourself.
Solar energy systems have really come to save us money and exploitation from the utility companies. Imagine a house that the owners pay $500 electric bills. This is a house that use a way lot more of electricity. Not forgetting that the utility power usually goes off sometimes so a lot of inconvenience is experienced. Considering the power consumption of a house like this, i have come up with a $10,000 solar system to try move the owners of such houses to being energy independent rather than depending on the grid.
One might not be able to use the solar system for every power need but i guarantee almost 80% power drop on your grid consumption.
The system will power most of your appliances in the house and be very stable. The battery bank is designed for the number of hours indicated that every appliance should be used.
See the appliance usage in the image below.
Below we list the solar Components that are used in the system but the quantity of each component will be determined after sizing our solar system.
Optimal hardware on a $10,000 budget
Solar panels – 6pcs RENOGY® 100 Watt 100w Monocrystalline Photovoltaic PV
Controller – Morningstar TS-MPPT-60 Tristar Mppt 60 Amp
Final price: $8,671,57
The final price will still be a little higher and is determined later in the article after we have known how many of this components we are going to use.
This takes us to our sizing procedures for every components which we explained in our step-by-step guide article, How To Build Your Own Solar Energy System.
- Generation factor=2.98/3
- Battery losses=0.85
- Battery depth of discharge=0.6
- Solar charge controller losses=1.3
- Inverter watts allowance=30%
Sizing of components:
8510 watt-hour/2.98=3687.666 watts
3687.666 watts/100 watts=36.87=36,100 watts solar panels
(0.20×4245) +4255 watts=5106=5000 watts inverter
8510 watt-hours/0.85/0.6/12 volts = 1390.522 AH
1390.522 AH/125 AH=11.122=12,125 AH batteries
For the battery bank to have an output/input of 48 volts, just as in the guide,How To Build Your Own Solar Energy System, for the batteries, we will connect bunches 3 batteries in parallel and then connect the attained 4 bunches in series to add up voltage to 48 volts.
Solar charge controller
Solar charge controller depends on our solar panels short circuit current and the connection of the solar panels. remember we said on, How To Build Your Own Solar Energy System, that parallel connection of solar panels adds up current and series connection of solar panels adds up voltage. This is what we consider while sizing our solar charge controller.
In this system we are using 36 solar panels and each of them has the following specifications.
From the above picture our solar panel has a short circuit current of 5.75 A denoted as Isc. For our system connection we are going to connect an array of 9 solar panels in parallel for the 36 solar panels. So that we will have 4 solar arrays of 9 solar panels each, all connected in parallel to each other.
Why connect them this way?
Well our system voltage is 48 volts, connecting the solar panels in parallel don’t add up voltage, but at some point our whole solar array must give an output of 48 volts. By connecting them in parallel we maintain an output of 12 volts in the 4 mini arrays(9 solar panels connected in parallel). Then we connect the mini arrays in series so that their outputs adds up to 48 volts (which is our system voltage).
What happens with the current?
This is a good question, since finally our mini solar arrays are connected in series, we don’t have to worry about the current at that point. The place we are interested in is the mini arrays because the solar panels here are connected in parallel.
Our solar charge controller is going to be determined by the output of one mini array. Using the procedures in,How To Build Your Own Solar Energy System, for sizing the solar charge controller, now size for your charge controller in one mini array.
short circuit current(Isc) = 5.75 A
number of panels in one mini array = 9
solar charge losses ratio = 1.3
5.75 A x 1.3 x 9=67.27 A=60 A charge controller
The no of components needed
- No of components (A)
- Price each($) (B)
- Total($) (C)
6pcs RENOGY® 100 Watt 100w Monocrystalline Photovoltaic PV
A: 6 (6 pcs)
AIMS Power (PWRINV500048W) 5000W 48V Inverter
Vmaxtanks Vmaxslr125 AGM Deep Cycle 12v 125ah
Morningstar TS-MPPT-60 Tristar Mppt 60 Amp
The reason we round off this figure to $10,000 is because of the extra installation accessories needed during the installation. such as cables, insulating tapes, cable clip and ties, solar panels installation structure etc.
This system will power all the components listed but if you want to increase the number of hours at which you use your appliances you will need to increase the battery bank too.
The output voltage from each of our solar system components is 48 volts, this is achieved by designing the components, especially the batteries and the solar panels, in parallel and series connections. Thus making our system to have 48 volts as our system voltage.
This is a system for someone that needs BIG energy amounts. So what do you think? Will you get this off grid system set up by yourself? As always I will be more than happy to answer any questions you might have.