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2 solar panel systems a 1 powerwall (N. California)

miimura

Well-Known Member
Aug 21, 2013
6,478
6,227
Los Altos, CA
Tesla said that they're adding a SolarEdge inverter with String Optimizers for the 2nd system. If I'm understanding you right, it sounds like I should request that they wire it in such a way that a) I can see the separate output from each system, and b) the SolarEdge app should let me see what it's sole output is for the 2nd system, and c) the same app should give me per-panel production monitoring. Do I have that right @miimura ?
If they install the system you described, you just need to ask Tesla for SolarEdge monitoring access. Then you can use the SolarEdge app to see the per-panel production. There is no special monitoring, but you will need to install the little black Zigbee Gateway box that they will provide, or plug an ethernet cable from your LAN directly into the SolarEdge inverter. Whether or not you will get an additional solar-only tab showing the new solar production in your Tesla app depends on how they provision the new solar on their back-end systems.
When they do the install, do make sure that they show you a test demonstrating that the Powerwalls register both the new and old solar production alone and charge properly from each solar system, in addition to both solar systems at the same time.
I don't recall if you said what your original solar system is and what monitoring is available for it. In any case, in normal operation, the Powerwall tab in the Tesla app should show the aggregate solar and Powerwall operation and the SolarEdge app would show just the new system.
 

heytae

Member
Mar 9, 2015
149
64
Cupertino, CA
If they install the system you described, you just need to ask Tesla for SolarEdge monitoring access. Then you can use the SolarEdge app to see the per-panel production. There is no special monitoring, but you will need to install the little black Zigbee Gateway box that they will provide, or plug an ethernet cable from your LAN directly into the SolarEdge inverter. Whether or not you will get an additional solar-only tab showing the new solar production in your Tesla app depends on how they provision the new solar on their back-end systems.
When they do the install, do make sure that they show you a test demonstrating that the Powerwalls register both the new and old solar production alone and charge properly from each solar system, in addition to both solar systems at the same time.
I don't recall if you said what your original solar system is and what monitoring is available for it. In any case, in normal operation, the Powerwall tab in the Tesla app should show the aggregate solar and Powerwall operation and the SolarEdge app would show just the new system.

Got it, I know they asked for an ethernet connection to plug into the SolarEdge inverter. So as long as they have that, does that give the same features as the Zigbee Gateway or is there a difference for my situation?

My current/1st PV system is a 2012 4.5kw Sungevity system that doesn't have any app for realtime monitoring capability, other than downloading hourly or daily production data from a website the following day. Via the Tesla app though, I do see the realtime solar production via the Tesla-provided CTs as well as my Powerwalls activity.

The new 2nd system is scheduled to be installed in early February so I'm trying to get these wrinkles ironed out ahead of time. It currently looks like they'll be relating the inverter to inside of our garage so that it can be near the ethernet.
 

miimura

Well-Known Member
Aug 21, 2013
6,478
6,227
Los Altos, CA
Got it, I know they asked for an ethernet connection to plug into the SolarEdge inverter. So as long as they have that, does that give the same features as the Zigbee Gateway or is there a difference for my situation?

My current/1st PV system is a 2012 4.5kw Sungevity system that doesn't have any app for realtime monitoring capability, other than downloading hourly or daily production data from a website the following day. Via the Tesla app though, I do see the realtime solar production via the Tesla-provided CTs as well as my Powerwalls activity.

The new 2nd system is scheduled to be installed in early February so I'm trying to get these wrinkles ironed out ahead of time. It currently looks like they'll be relating the inverter to inside of our garage so that it can be near the ethernet.
It's possible that they asked for the Ethernet to plug into the Zigbee Gateway, not direct to the SE inverter. The data would get to SE either way, but I think Tesla would want the Zigbee gateway to be there for their own monitoring, firmware updates, etc.
 
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h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
2,915
552
auburn, ca
It's possible that they asked for the Ethernet to plug into the Zigbee Gateway, not direct to the SE inverter. The data would get to SE either way, but I think Tesla would want the Zigbee gateway to be there for their own monitoring, firmware updates, etc.
This is something I have looked into. My solaredge inverter has the zigbee card, which connects wifi to the zigbee gateway, which is hardwired to my internet. But, solaredge show how some models can be hardwired into the internet, but not which models have this. If I get a new inverter, one of many questions I will be looking into
 
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heytae

Member
Mar 9, 2015
149
64
Cupertino, CA
It's possible that they asked for the Ethernet to plug into the Zigbee Gateway, not direct to the SE inverter. The data would get to SE either way, but I think Tesla would want the Zigbee gateway to be there for their own monitoring, firmware updates, etc.

Thanks for the details. Sounds like the Zigbee gateway would give Tesla some additional capabilities. So maybe my ethernet will plug into a Zigbee also, even though wifi won't be necessary.

I got confirmation that the Tesla design team is going to relocate the inverter to inside of my garage, near where my existing inverter is, for the direct ethernet connection. That redesign is going to trigger a permit re-review with Cupertino but hopefully that won't cause my early Feb installation date to be pushed back.

During these low solar production months, I'm REALLY wishing I had the 2nd PV system already. My PV system isn't able to recharge the Powerwalls fast enough to keep up with our daily demand so they're usually sitting at my 20% Power Outage Reserve. No bueno. :(
 

miimura

Well-Known Member
Aug 21, 2013
6,478
6,227
Los Altos, CA
I raise the Reserve to just accommodate an ideal day's solar production above the Reserve. There's no point letting the PWs bounce off a Reserve at 20% when they can bounce off 75% and never reach 100%.
 

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