OFF GRID wind and solar installation and cost

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Hi #TeamKB, in this article Kimroy Bailey Renewables will show you five simple steps to install your own off grid system. This will take you a step closer to stop paying monthly energy bills. An off grid system powers your home without the grid using wind or solar system. KB Renewables will include the major materials needed. This article will discuss the cost for a basic wind / solar system. Most renewable energy companies may NOT want you to install a system by yourself with a little help. They would prefer to charge you an arm and a leg in installation expenses. We recommend that you watch the video below in order to fully understand this article.

Step 1: DIY Installing a wind turbine

Create the foundation for your wind turbine and the wooden box frame. You will need a 20 feet, 2 inches diameter galvanize pipe for the wind turbine’s tower. Five lengths of steel will be needed to make a 12ft tall x 0.8ft square steel cage. Eight bags of cement and 25 bags of each of sand and marl will be used for concrete mixture. Create a ply wooden box 12 feet tall x 1 feet square. Place the ply box around the steel cage to pour the concrete aggregate. Ensure that your galvanize pipe is at the center of the concrete mixture. To ensure that the wind turbine is stable the pipe should be straight therefore pay keen attention to this.

Step 2: Kimroy Bailey Renewables wind turbine assembly

Off grid wind turbine installation
Off grid wind turbine installation

Wind turbines can be bought online or locally at Kimroy Bailey Renewables. We stock 1kW wind turbines and motors in the event that you would like to make your own wind turbine. You can also make a wind turbine at home using almost any DC motor or 3 phase AC generator. Follow the assembly instruction for your wind turbine or call +1876-834-5971 for telephone guidance. Installing your wind turbine can be done in 3 steps. First of all Connect each of the five blades of your turbine to the hub of the unit.

Route a triple core electrical wire through the galvanize pipe and connect the wire to your wind turbine. The electrical wire should be connected to what is called the slip ring. Always ensure that you connect the wire on the ground. This will help you in the event of high wind and you need to stop the turbine from spinning by connecting two of the 3 wires together.

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Finally climb up and mount the wind turbine base to the galvanize pipe. Tighten the base of the turbine to the galvanize pipe and then install the hub or blades to the shaft of the 20 feet galvanize pipe. Ensure that you tighten all the nuts an bolts and do not install the turbine if the wind speed is stronger than 10 m/s (meter per second).

Step 3: Off Grid Solar Panel Installation

Off grid solar panel installation
Off grid solar panel installation

Two factors must be understood before installing solar panels. First, ensure that your roof is not shaded by trees and neighboring buildings. Secondly ensure that you install the solar panels facing south. The easiest place to install a solar panel is on your roof while the most secure place to install solar panels is on a concrete deck. Solar panels are required to be installed at an angle facing south for countries north of the equator. Yet research shows that large off grid systems with space limitation can be mounted flat facing the sky. When mounting solar panels use T-Clamps to join the panels together and end L-clamps to secure the endmost panels.

Step 4: Kimroy Bailey Renewables connecting Solar Panels

For a 12 solar panel installation Kimroy Bailey Renewables connect panels in both series and parallel. Therefore we first connect groups of 3 panels in series. Furthermore we use a combiner box to connect 4 groups of 3 panels in parallel. In the combiner box are four 15Amp DC breaker for each of the four group of panels. Using twelve solar panels rated at 250W you are able to generate 12 x 250 = 3000W. Most of all this is sufficient generating capacity to cover an estimated J$15,000 (~U$150) energy bill depending on your energy usage.

Step 5: Battery, Charge Controller and Inverter

A critical component of your renewable energy system is your back end electronics. Most persons talk about the wind turbine or solar panels but the heart of an renewable energy system are the: inverter, charge controller and batteries. For the 12 panel system we use 16 batteries rated at 6 Volts and stores 115 Amp Hours. Amp Hours are an indication of the amount of current a battery can dissipate in one hour for your off grid system. Consequently sixteen batteries for example can power a number of appliances overnight. So we are able to power a refrigerator, television, 20 LED lights, a few laptop computers. Since the batteries may run low during the night it is important for the panels to recharge them daily. Most noteworthy 16 batteries at 115AH stores the same amount of power as 8 batteries rated at 230AH.

Here is what our customer Ricknel Marshall had to say about his 8 panel and 1 wind turbine system.

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Charge controllers are rated by the amount of current they are designed to handle. You can calculate what size charge controller you will need for your home. While dividing the total solar panel capacity by the voltage of your battery bank. The 12 panels in the video above each produce 250W and has a total generation capacity of  3,000W. Therefore 3,000W divided by 48V = 62.5Amps. As a result Kimroy Bailey Renewables used the Schneider Electric – Conext 60 Amp Charge Controller.

The final major component for your off grid system we will be discussing is the inverter. This changes Direct Current(DC) from the solar panels and battery to Alternated Current (AC). A 4,000W Inverter is standard for most home installation yet a smaller inverter work well as also.

How much does an OFF GRID system cost?

The cost for a renewable energy system unfortunately is not black or white. Pricing is based primarily on energy consumption and appliances consequently prices are customer specific. Nonetheless A J$300,000 or U$3,000 can acquire a simple renewable energy system design. Especially relevant, you will be able to purchase the items below for a simple system set up.

4 Solar Panels rated at 250W                         = $80,000

Solar Mounting and Connector + Wire        = $20,000

4 Trace Batteries 6 Volts rated at 115AH     = $48,000

1 Xantrex C60 charge controller + display  = $35,000

1 Inverter rated at 1500W                                =$70,000

DC Breaker and Battery wire + Miscellaneous   =$47,000

Total                                                                      =J$300,000 or U$3,000

This off grid system will generate 1000W of power daily and stores 2.76 kWh of power for overnight usage as a result of the battery capacity.

What can this power       |         What this will NOT be able to power

Small standard refrigerator          |            Washing machine

LED Lights and Laptop                 |            Air Conditioning Unit

Television set, radio, iron             |             Large Microwave 

To power  the items in RED you will need an inverter larger than 4,000W in addition to more batteries. Consequently the beauty of these small systems is the flexibility to upgrade from a 1.5kW to a 4kW.  Customer pays the difference in price plus installation and electronics and we’ll change the units. Please feel free to give us a call +1876-834-5971 for a custom system price. Hence Let us help you stop paying monthly energy bills.

Please feel free to leave a comment below most of all share your questions or comments.

In conclusion Start Small, start today. Renewable Is RELIABLE! This is #TeamKB, Let us #KeepBelieving

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