Solar Dashboard Project

Projects related to Solar Power
xion2000
Posts: 49
Joined: Fri Jan 24, 2020 6:02 am

Re: Solar Dashboard Project

Post by xion2000 » Sat Jan 09, 2021 5:08 am

And this is how it can look in Home Assistant.
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DC Solar.jpg

xion2000
Posts: 49
Joined: Fri Jan 24, 2020 6:02 am

Re: Solar Dashboard Project

Post by xion2000 » Sat Jan 09, 2021 6:09 am

I was using my integration in conjunction with a DIY DC only Solar OFF Grid project and using Home Assistant and the SolarDashboard to enable a battery charger to switch on automatically when the combined battery voltage of a bank of 3 12v batteries got down to a certain level (12.4v).
I have 2 computers that run 24/7 that are located in my garage where the Solar Charge Controller and the Batteries are also. I've been dabbling with some off grid usage and was trying to run the PC's (+ a 4 Hard drive caddy) using a small array of Solar Panels (270w).
If the weather was decent each day the batteries would recharge sufficiently to then power my equipment through the night as well as through the day but if the weather was not (I'm in the UK!! and it often isn't) the battery charger would kick in as a secondary power source until the batteries were back upto a certain voltage.
So I only actually required the battery voltage data from the SolarDashboard but having the other data displayed in Home Assistant was a nice to have.
I state "WAS" as for 2 reasons I'm currently not doing this
1. It's winter and the sun has completely run away
2. My Solardashboard had started to become very unreliable and as of today is not relaying any data at all

Hope this helps for those interested

I also have 2 other solar arrays.
1. A professionally installed grid tie system mounted on the East & West side of my garage roof (1750w of panel each side + Samil Power SolarRiver 2300w Inverter for each side) which I'm paid for their production by utilizing the UK Feed in Tariff scheme (Installed 6 years ago)
2. A DIY grid tied system (which I do not receive payments for) with panels located behind my garage mounted on a scaffold frame creating a roof over a storage area (780w in total using a 700w Solis inverter)
Just thought this last bit of info my interest a few members

xion2000
Posts: 49
Joined: Fri Jan 24, 2020 6:02 am

Re: Solar Dashboard Project

Post by xion2000 » Mon Jan 11, 2021 8:04 am

Unfortunately as off several days ago (only just had time to investigate the issue) I'm now unable to read ANY information or connect in ANY way to my Charge Controller.
The data stopped being transmitted shortly after carrying out the last firmware update and resetting everything on the SolarDashboard.
This is the 2nd time this has happened now, fortunately I managed to exchange the Epever controller last time and that sorted it.
Is there ANY way that something in the SolarDashboard electronics can screw up the com port on the charge controller as this is what appears to have happened.
I've tried connecting using my PC and the Solar Station Monitor Software which has worked fine in the past but that does not work either.
I've completely power cycled the charge controller but still no joy!!
ANY suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
As it stands when I receive the new box from Jonathan it won't be of any use to me.

TripitakaBC
Posts: 14
Joined: Tue Nov 17, 2020 5:12 pm

Re: Solar Dashboard Project

Post by TripitakaBC » Mon Jan 11, 2021 1:52 pm

xion2000 wrote:
Mon Jan 11, 2021 8:04 am
Is there ANY way that something in the SolarDashboard electronics can screw up the com port on the charge controller as this is what appears to have happened.
That is a great question. One would imagine (and I took for granted) that whenever one piece of electrical equipment (such as the SnekTek) is connected to another piece of electrical equipment (a charge controller) then opto-isolation would be in use as standard. If nothing else, it would prevent any avenue for lawsuits for damage to solar controllers.

It isn't out of the question that an ESP8266 could supply 3.3 or 5v to a data pin in the case of a malfunction of the hardware (hence the opto-isolation insurance) but to have it happen twice to the same person would be cause to raise an eyebrow. It would also require the Epever unit be intolerant of those voltages to the point of causing failure. As unlikely as it sounds, I'd be looking at any issues with the Epever unit design.

I think that Jonathan is probably best positioned to share what he knows of the tolerances of the Epever and Renogy units on the data ports.

Afterthought:
Of course, it occurred to me after I posted that you have the same SnekTek unit that was connected to both solar controllers which, if opto-isolation is not in use, would make it the prime candidate for the source of the issue.

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