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New Tesla 15.12kW Solar / 4 Powerwall order in Orlando

mongo

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2017
13,438
41,894
Michigan
I don’t think those really make much of a difference here in humid Florida where @mstgkillr and I live. Plus the minerals and such in the water can damage the coil.
Mineral content is an issue, but coils with 60 degree water reduce the head pressure and compressor energy needed vs whatever the air temp is.
Guy I knew of in Michigan ran his well water through a coil in the central air instead of having A/C for lower cost.
 

SciFriGuy

Member
Sep 8, 2018
48
7
Connecticut
Good to hear that some people had good Tesla response. My biggest worry is communication and response. My local installer is $7k higher installation cost. Hard to go with his very highly regarded local solar company at such a price differential. His company also offers Panasonic 25year guaranteed panels. With Enphase micro-inverters. Does Tesla offer any options for parts, e.g. inverters or panels? How good are they at designing the roof layout?
 

MP3Mike

Well-Known Member
Feb 1, 2016
16,422
38,302
Oregon
Does Tesla offer any options for parts, e.g. inverters or panels?

Part of how Tesla keeps costs down, and speeds up installation is that they stick to pre-designed systems. And they have those systems pre-approved by a lot of the permitting agencies so they don't have to build a big/custom application for each system.

For the most part they use Delta inverters if you aren't going to have shading where the panels are installed and they use a SolarEdge system if you are going to have shading issues. I haven't ever seen the use micro-inverters.
 

pdx_m3s

Active Member
May 18, 2019
1,369
1,242
Portland, OR
Good to hear that some people had good Tesla response. My biggest worry is communication and response. My local installer is $7k higher installation cost. Hard to go with his very highly regarded local solar company at such a price differential. His company also offers Panasonic 25year guaranteed panels. With Enphase micro-inverters. Does Tesla offer any options for parts, e.g. inverters or panels? How good are they at designing the roof layout?

I've been really impressed with my solar order thus far. My rep has always been easy to reach on the phone and via email. Very responsive and helpful. The panels Tesla uses are solid and have a 25 year all inclusive warranty. If it were me, there's no way I'd pay 70% more for an identical system.
 

BrettS

Active Member
Mar 28, 2017
2,132
2,566
Orlando, FL
Well, it looks like my project for today is moving this pump for my irrigation system. It was there when I bought the house, so I don’t know who installed it or what they were thinking when they did, but apparently code requires 3 feet of clearance in front of the pain electrical panel. And that pipe is literally right in front of it. The guys from Tesla were pretty concerned that I wouldn’t pass my inspection with the pump there.

They said that I could leave it and hope that the inspector was in a good mood when he came, but they thought that I was pretty likely to fail and have to move it. Originally I figured I’d just leave it and hope for the best, but as I’m thinking about it it doesn’t seem like it’s going to be too much work to move it back a bit and at least then I’m more likely to pass the inspection on the first try.

3ACF1C0C-185E-4C5D-9820-5C17C2FB4585.jpeg
 
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BrettS

Active Member
Mar 28, 2017
2,132
2,566
Orlando, FL
Well, it wound up being a bit more effort than I was hoping, but I got it moved. Florida soil is pretty sandy and easy to dig in, but what I didn’t anticipate was that there were two layers of landscape fabric in that garden as well as a large number of roots. Additionally I wound up having to run new wire because the conduit and wire wasn’t long enough to reach the new location. But I did get the pump off of that unsightly cinderblock and put it on a paver instead. And it’s now nearly 3.5’ from the panels, so I should have nothing to worry about during the inspection. Of course now all I need them to do is actually schedule the inspection.

B674979D-DC3D-4600-83CB-4BA4232FC985.jpeg
 

SMAlset

Well-Known Member
Mar 4, 2017
9,188
10,056
SF Bay Area
Much cleaner look too @BrettS. I was wondering what was going to happen with it. The wall looks great and since all your equipment there is gray, the GW1 really doesn't look bad there. In fact a GW2 would have looked out of place. Good luck on getting that inspection and then I assume you have a wait for the PTO like we do here in Calif.
 

BrettS

Active Member
Mar 28, 2017
2,132
2,566
Orlando, FL
Much cleaner look too @BrettS. I was wondering what was going to happen with it. The wall looks great and since all your equipment there is gray, the GW1 really doesn't look bad there. In fact a GW2 would have looked out of place. Good luck on getting that inspection and then I assume you have a wait for the PTO like we do here in Calif.

Thanks. I’m exhausted from all the digging through roots and landscape fabric, but I think it came out pretty well and I feel more comfortable about passing the inspection now. I feel like if I had let it go more than likely it would have wound up having to move it anyway and had more delays from a failed inspection.

I agree about the gateway 1. I can see how the gateway 2 would look nice if it was installed next to the powerwalls, but in my case the gateway 1 just blends in with all the other panels.

And yeah, I am supposed to wait for PTO. However, as I mentioned above I have just been running completely off grid since Wednesday morning. I feel like as long as I’m not sending power to the grid then the utility doesn’t really have anything to complain about,
 

BlackCatt

Member
Sep 3, 2019
13
6
Tampa
@BrettS Question for you on your usage graphs. The rhythmic pattern with the consistent spikes up to ~3kW of usage (blue graph) seen primarily at night between ~8pm and 7am, is that the HVAC unit or something else or do you even know?

Sure, here’s the graph for Wednesday. This was the day I went off grid, so my house was powered by the grid until about 8AM, then I turned off the breaker. My home usage was 75.5kWh, Solar Energy was 73.3kWh, and it took 19.3kWh from the powerwalls.

View attachment 556841

Here is yesterday where I was off grid all day. My home usage here was 67.2kWh, the solar generated 72.3kWh and it took 31.7kWh from the powerwalls.

View attachment 556858

And here’s so far today. My house has used 55.1kWh, the solar has generated 71.8kWh (it did better than I thought it was going to when I posted the graph above), and I’ve taken 20.4kWh from the powerwalls.

View attachment 556869

If you want me to post the home usage/solar generation/powerwall usage graphs individually, instead of all three things on top of each other, let me know and I can do that.
 

BrettS

Active Member
Mar 28, 2017
2,132
2,566
Orlando, FL
@BrettS Question for you on your usage graphs. The rhythmic pattern with the consistent spikes up to ~3kW of usage (blue graph) seen primarily at night between ~8pm and 7am, is that the HVAC unit or something else or do you even know?

Yeah, that’s my HVAC. It draws about 2.6kWh when it cycles on. You can see it cycle during the day as well, although it runs for longer during the afternoons.
 

BlackCatt

Member
Sep 3, 2019
13
6
Tampa
Yeah, that’s my HVAC. It draws about 2.6kWh when it cycles on. You can see it cycle during the day as well, although it runs for longer during the afternoons.

Thanks for the info. I don't know how much mine will pull but being just west of you in Lutz FL (just north of Tampa) I'm afraid I might be in even worse shape, especially since I have 2 separate units, one for upstairs and one for downstairs. :(
 

BrettS

Active Member
Mar 28, 2017
2,132
2,566
Orlando, FL
Well, after 7 days and about 13 hours of being off grid I am going back on the grid for the evening. It was really overcast this morning and then we got a lot of rain this afternoon and I just didn’t get enough solar power today to get my powerwalls charged enough to make it through the night. I could probably make it until about 4 or 5AM, but I will be asleep then, so I’m just going to reconnect to the grid this evening. That way I’ll save at least some power in the powerwalls in case there is a real outage tonight.

65B9AD26-A0A1-4CB2-A687-CCCB2BF4677F.jpeg
 

BrettS

Active Member
Mar 28, 2017
2,132
2,566
Orlando, FL
So I was just checking on the production of my system (as I have been doing obsessively for the past week or so) and saw this:

E9F7F89F-168C-448A-BF40-CB1ED21E7BFF.jpeg


It’s showing my 15.12kW system generating 15.3kW of power, which is pretty good if you ask me:). 15.3kW was the peak number that I saw and it was bouncing around 15kW a little during that time dipping down to around 14.7kW and then back up into the low 15’s, but personally I think that number is pretty impressive.
 

BlackCatt

Member
Sep 3, 2019
13
6
Tampa
So I was just checking on the production of my system (as I have been doing obsessively for the past week or so) and saw this:

View attachment 559668

It’s showing my 15.12kW system generating 15.3kW of power, which is pretty good if you ask me:). 15.3kW was the peak number that I saw and it was bouncing around 15kW a little during that time dipping down to around 14.7kW and then back up into the low 15’s, but personally I think that number is pretty impressive.

Forgive my ignorance here, but does that mean the 15.12kW a theoretical limit and not a hardware limit?
 

mongo

Well-Known Member
May 3, 2017
13,438
41,894
Michigan
Forgive my ignorance here, but does that mean the 15.12kW a theoretical limit and not a hardware limit?
Depends where the limit is.
Panels have a design rating. If you are in an area with more solar that the standard, or cloud edges are shining more sun, or the panels are cold, or they are new, you can get higher outputs.
The inverters will self limit to their design numbers.
 
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BrettS

Active Member
Mar 28, 2017
2,132
2,566
Orlando, FL
Someone correct me if I’m wrong, but this is my understanding...

When the silicon solar cells are created they don’t all perform exactly the same way. Some will perform better and some will perform worse, but the panels are guaranteed to produce a minimum amount of power under specific conditions. It’s possible that some panels may exceed their rating by some extent.

Additionally, as mongo stated, conditions can vary quite a lot and it’s possible that the panels were getting more energy from the sun than the what was required for rating the panel.

However it’s also worth noting that the panel rating (and the system rating that is based on the panel rating) is based off of the DC power generated by the panels. There will be losses as that DC power is converted to AC in the inverter. So in the real world it’s not always common to see AC production that exceeds the system rating like that. Up until today the highest I’ve seen my AC production numbers was around 14kW, which I thought was pretty good. At least until this afternoon.

There’s another thread talking about cleaning panels and how much that affects performance. We had very heavy rain yesterday afternoon, so I suppose it’s possible that the rain helped to clean the panels and that’s helping to increase the production numbers as well.
 

BlackCatt

Member
Sep 3, 2019
13
6
Tampa
When the silicon solar cells are created they don’t all perform exactly the same way. Some will perform better and some will perform worse, but the panels are guaranteed to produce a minimum amount of power under specific conditions. It’s possible that some panels may exceed their rating by some extent.

Interesting, I believe that is similar to how computer processors are created / graded and why some can be overclocked and some can't.
 

wjgjr

Active Member
May 11, 2020
1,331
1,051
Silver Spring, MD
Someone correct me if I’m wrong, but this is my understanding...

When the silicon solar cells are created they don’t all perform exactly the same way. Some will perform better and some will perform worse, but the panels are guaranteed to produce a minimum amount of power under specific conditions. It’s possible that some panels may exceed their rating by some extent.

Additionally, as mongo stated, conditions can vary quite a lot and it’s possible that the panels were getting more energy from the sun than the what was required for rating the panel.

However it’s also worth noting that the panel rating (and the system rating that is based on the panel rating) is based off of the DC power generated by the panels. There will be losses as that DC power is converted to AC in the inverter. So in the real world it’s not always common to see AC production that exceeds the system rating like that. Up until today the highest I’ve seen my AC production numbers was around 14kW, which I thought was pretty good. At least until this afternoon.

There’s another thread talking about cleaning panels and how much that affects performance. We had very heavy rain yesterday afternoon, so I suppose it’s possible that the rain helped to clean the panels and that’s helping to increase the production numbers as well.

Was this more of a spike or part of a smooth curve? If a spike, was it right after the sun came out from clouds? I've seen spikes above what would be the normal curve on days where there are some clouds, right after the sun pops back out. Typically within a minute or two, output then falls back to where it should be on the daily curve.
 

BrettS

Active Member
Mar 28, 2017
2,132
2,566
Orlando, FL
I would say probably more of a spike, although it’s a little hard to tell because it’s been reasonably cloudy today so my entire graph is pretty spiky. I watched it for a couple of minutes and it was hanging around the 15kW range and then when I checked a little while later it was closer to 14kW, which is more what I would expect for this time of day.
 

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