Solar generator, what you got, what you looking at?

First of all I want to apologize for starting to derail the panic thread. I’m sorry

What have you guys considered to be a good unit or what units to stay away from. Seriously looking into this or building a small unit into the shack.

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Your local electric authority might be a good place to start. They should be familiar with what works best in the area and should not be as product-biased as other sources. Many of these systems are eligible for significant tax credits - find out before you buy. Once you have some purchase options lined up ask for references to actual users (or at least verifiable feedback). If the system requires professional installation (this may be a legal, or at least an insurance, matter) go and talk to some of the pros.

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I’ve been considering solar on small scale. Lead Farmer on YouTube had a few videos that give some details on various solar generators: Solar Gumbo show 🔌 ☀️⚡️ - YouTube
I have a 10k dual fuel generator non-solar that works great during outages, but in a long term outage, eventually fuel runs out and I think the Sun will be usable for quite a while.

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I have a 2k watt goal zero. Presently only using a 100 W solar panel but intend to get four more. It seem to be working fine with only one panel but not efficient enough for every day use without the extra panels. I have only been using it a couple of weeks so I cannot rate it yet.

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My head is spinning…https://shopsolarkits.com/
At present I have 420 watts of solar panels, 3 separate purchases, 3 seperate controllers lol… hooked up to a 12 year old car battery and two 8 year old deep cycle batteries, running a 600 watt inverter. Pretty good when the sun is beaming on it, but dies too quickly, so thinking of doing an upgrade of the 3 key components for my downstairs set up. My 800 watt pure sine inverter is in the motorhome, but want to go about 2k pure sine, thinking 6-800 watts of panels, and 2 x100 amp hour lithium batteries to start. For upstairs or travel thinking a self contained unit, everything that got me drooling is on backorder it seems, Inergy Flex looks good but there’s so many choices.

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NEW & Improved Solar Wonder - 4Patriots

I have this one for when the power goes out I can still run my C PAP!

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Learned about the advantage of lithium phosphate batteries today…found a Pecron 3000 that got good ratings…but li ion…and now I need that phosphate…Bluetti in the lead right now. Looking at the 200 and 300 series, thinking the 300 may be too big to move…very linear tradeoffs I notice between weights, performance, and price.
Very informative video from this guy.

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Just bought that Bluetti ac200p with a pair of 120 watt panels. Ended up on wellbots.com and got free shipping no tax and 10percent off for veterans day. Wasn’t sure on the site, but seems legit and used amazonpay.

Now I can sleep :smile:

Hey guys, thanks for all the rabbit holes, links. Appreciate all the input.

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I get so ocd on this stuff, it’s nice when I finally press the button.
Saw that sale…serious $$ off there…and no coughtaxcough to boot :+1:

Imo you didn’t derail the panic thread. Looking at numerous sites, saying “shipping in July” and 5-8 weeks lead time, and watching the sales on shopsolarkits.com made me feel this was the next ammo shortage thing.

I have a complete solar system up in Wa. State,but the sun doesent shine all the time so I am getting to go old school and probably build a wood alkahol still as they did in the early 20’s and that is what was used before the advent of the refinery,in fact that was what the farmers used to plow the feilds,and do a search,it is out there

The 4 Patriots is one of the last ones I’d ever get, very expensive with very limited power…

They have these new home freeze dryer systems out, sells for double what another company had on the market and this other company has had them for years, refined them, and make them easy things to operate. 4 Patriots is extremely expensive, and you dont get much for your money… Their 72hr food pack, at best, I’d say 24, maybe 36hrs top… its okay food and will get you by, but its not the best by far…

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was biting my tongue, and agree with you. Tried their food, free/paid for shipping, $10 for “3 day supply” which was basically oatmeal and dried peas; I renamed it “Grandma’s starch soup.” Stocked up on Mountain House. Looked at the link, anything geared towards “patriots” these days is a marketing gimmick, and when they go on and on about grampa jones running his fridge 7 hours during a power outage, then running the battery dry “just to see” instead of recharging while he can., I just think “dumbass”…saw 764 watt hour capacity…hey if it works for Todd, that’s cool, I just hate that “For Patriots” marketing bs…fwiw, the I got the Bluetti, with nearly 3 times the capacity (2048 to 784), more than twice the solar panel (240 to 100) for $500 less than the “Patriots” model, plus the free shipping, tax “amnesty” which was pretty patriotic imo, ironically.
FWIW, I added a battery to my Bluetti purchase, and will have 4k watt hours now. Sticking with just the 2 panels, going to see if I can add my existing ones in, but bought the AC input cord, and if needed, would most likely rely on my gas genny to charge these up more quickly. Figured the 4k watt hour capacity lets me run the fridge overnight, and have my coffee and computer the next morning, as well as let my fish live a normal life lol.
Got the battery at wellbots again, and the adapter was $20 cheaper on Bluettis ebay site compared to their home site.

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How long do these batteries keep their charge?

They say to top them off every 3-6 months. 3500 cycles to 80 percent capacity,so you could drain them daily for 10 years and still have 80 percent. My old lead acid system home build is whipped…

The Bluetti has pass through charging, run/charge simultaneously,so I’ll be leaving it on permanently and running a few low draw items. I was thinking of adding another panel, but will simply plug the new unit into my old units inverter to increase the charge, at least while the sun is on the panels.
Well, e-bikes charged, time for a ride.

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Is there a commercial product to tie these systems into your main house panel and get them in phase with the local power company?

There are tie ins on some of the sites . Years ago I put in a simple single pole adapter onto my furnace circuit. Easy to do, vids on YouTube. I believe different states/utilities have different rules on this.

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The average person doesn’t know you can’t store AC power only DC.
Thats when you start with the rabbit hole thing.
Good luck
PS: if you have natural gas ( to your house ) a backup generator is a no brainer.

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Got 2 more matching panels today, so I’ll have 4 x 120 watt for the generator that are kosher, legit, and OEM.
Also got a 10 gage 50’ mc4 extension so I can put these in the best area of my yard while keeping this generator indoors…wife let me know gas will be gone, money is worthless, so I’m on a roll :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:.
After I get this squared away I’ll upgrade my inverter and battery bank and get those panels moved as well. Lost a controller, so today was hilarious, running my electric weed whacker, electric lawn mower, throttle only ride on the e-bikes, pool running and flashlights charging…all in the interest of not frying those poor old batteries :boom::fire:

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Heads up, $600 coupon on these…1 bought the 1k model, they have a 1500 as well, both have the lithium phosphate battery. Figure the Bluetti is 108 pounds with the extra battery, this one is 40 pounds. Bluetti is driving me nuts figuring out the cables I need to connect the extra battery, and come to find out, the formerly $60 cable is $130 and backordered…got mine reserved…