Solar Panel System Failure

Solar inverter fails within four years!

I haven’t blogged about the the East-west split solar system for some time. As far as I know it had been doing very well and running without problems. This was until last week when I learnt that the SolarEdge inverter had stopped working.

Solar InverterAfter checking the display panel we found that it was showing ‘Error Code 26’ – a faulty AC relay. We checked the manual and it appears that this is caused when the AC relay fails during the wake-up test and that we should contact SolarEdge support.

After a couple of calls to the company that installed the solar panel system we were informed that the inverter would need replacing. We were rather shocked at this news as the system hasn’t even achieved four years use 🙁

Although we were expecting an inverter to last a lot longer than just four years, we were very pleased that the inverter and initial installation was still under warranty. The installation company ordered a replacement and installed the unit within 7-days. It would have cost around eight hundred pounds if the inverter was not within warranty.

I can’t help now thinking about how many inverters we will get through before the systems pay for themselves!

Solar Electric Generation – February Stats – East West Split

Late again, but here are the east-west solar array split’s February generation statistics. These stats are from the 2.64kW system, which employs SunPower 240kW E19 Series solar panels with SolarEdge power optimisers.

I expect that some of the more keener viewers of this site will have spotted that I have not reported on part of January. I was reporting on each month from the installation date. However from this month on to make solar generation statistics a little clearer I have started by reporting by calendar month. This will make comparison against the south, south-east system easier to compare. I will try to add the missing January statistics later.

East-West split solar generation stats for February 2012The electricity generation statistics are for the period from February 1st to 29th. During this second reported month the system harvested just over 91.2 kW of electricity, averaging 3.15 kW per day. The chart also shows the highest day of generation at 6.71 kW.

Solar Panel Generation – First Month Stats – East West Split

A little late publishing, but here are the first month’s generation statistics for the east-west split solar panel array. These stats are for my father’s 2.64kW system, which employs SunPower 240kW E19 Series solar panels with SolarEdge power optimisers fitted.

These statistics are the very first shown for the east-west system that was installed on 7th December 2011. After all the upheaval and agitation that he has endured over the previous month it’s rather nice to blog about something a little more interesting than installation problems.

Like my own, my father’s expectations were a lot higher than that of the received yield of solar generated electric. Having an installation in December is probable not the best idea if you want to receive instant encouragement and return from your system. After all this was now the darkest and gloomiest days of the year.

When reviewing my first solar harvesting statistics I had nothing to compare with. Seeing these now, although comparison is still very liberal due to the split array and differing size systems, it nonetheless offers some interesting similarities and solar array personalities.

What stands out when comparing these solar generation statistics to that of south, south-east system in particular at this stage is that the east-west split seems to harvest more on dull days. Obviously I can’t compare like for like but I believe that this slight improvement on certain days is down to the power optimisers. Overall the near south facing array trounces the split system during these shorter days, but once the longer days arrive the east-west split should come into its own. It should be rather interesting comparing in the months to come!

East-west split solar array first month's statistics

The electricity generation statistics are for the period from 8th December to 7th January 2012. During this first month the system harvested just over 37.5 kW of electricity, averaging 1.21 kW per day. The chart also shows the highest spike of generation hitting at 2.51 kW.

SolarEdge Monitoring

An email was received this week with details regarding the monitoring of the East-West split SolarEdge power optimised solar system installed at my fathers property. This would enable him to log-on to the SolarEdge monitoring portal and view the solar system’s performance. You can also, if required, view public sites around the world and compare.

And today also saw the scaffolding arrive to enable repair work to begin on the loose ridge tiles. This was caused at the time of installation by the installers drilling incorrectly and dislodging the tiles.