Ham Radio's Role in California Outages?

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by W2JKT, Oct 9, 2019.

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  1. N0TZU

    N0TZU Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    How do you figure you can replace the solar system for 1/4 of today's cost in 30 years, including batteries?
  2. KX4Z

    KX4Z Ham Member QRZ Page

    Trend lines
  3. KA4DPO

    KA4DPO Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I don't know Bill, we have a 28 cu ft Samsung and it draws 730 watts, 1200 startup. For your needs it sounds like you have it pretty well under control. For us to go off grid, or nearly, we would need around 6KW of capacity. That can be done with PV cells but the batteries needed to carry the load for HVAC 24/7 would cost a fortune, and they have to be replaced about every five years on average. So if you look at the cost of a system like I just described, it would price out around $25K. If we save $1300.00 dollars a year on electricity, then the system will pay for itself in 19 years, but then the cost of batteries puts it back in the red.

    One other thing, for me at least, is we plan on moving at least one more time before we head for the old folks home and I don't want to sink that much money into something that might be a strong selling point for some, but I will never see a nickel of my investment.
  4. KX4Z

    KX4Z Ham Member QRZ Page

    Maybe my math is off. Check my math please. Samsung says 722 kWh per year.

    That works out to an average of 80 W per hour.

    On a good day, I could run 19 of those refrigerators continuously.

    Attached Files:

  5. N0TZU

    N0TZU Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Perhaps the solar cells themselves, but what about labor and the batteries? Lead acid batteries cost more every year, at least when I buy them. I also question if any lead-acid battery can last 30 years. Ten might be pushing it.
  6. KX4Z

    KX4Z Ham Member QRZ Page

    Let me explain a bit about batteries.

    Electricity in my area is $.13 per kilowatt hour.

    It may be a lot more or a lot less where you live. My brother charges his Tesla for four cents an kwhour at night by using one of their special rates that probably depends on nuclear power

    Batteries are terribly expensive if you use them up. They are a chemical reaction, and basically you’re going to get a certain amount of coulombs total in and out of that battery over the lifespan (until it’s capacity declines to 80% of its original capacity )

    I ran some calculations on running power in and out of batteries and concluded that it would raise my price to $.24 per kilowatt hour. That is not economically viable!

    So my goal is never ever to run power in and out of a battery if possible Generally when you need air-conditioning most of the time is during the day

    The newer extreme high efficiency units have motors that can start off a solar system But I am still connected to the grid to provide most of my AC needs.

    In a hurricane, we would either move to the section of our property that is completely solar powered or else we would stick in a simple window unit that we keep in storage just for that purpose.

    Let me repeat: never ever run power in and out of a battery if you can help it. Synchronize your energy generation with your energy usage as much as possible.
  7. KX4Z

    KX4Z Ham Member QRZ Page

    You might want to read exactly how I use them. I think my batteries are five years old, and they have so far 60 cycles. If you have more questions, don’t hesitate to give me a phone call, I love talking about this stuff, it was a huge investment and I did a lot of research to understand it.
  8. KX4Z

    KX4Z Ham Member QRZ Page

    I’m sorry, I don’t understand what your question is about. Perhaps you could rephrase it?
  9. N1OOQ

    N1OOQ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Your neighbor with direct inversion, no batteries. I presume he must pull all of his power from the power co. at night?
  10. W7UUU

    W7UUU Super Moderator Lifetime Member 133 Administrator Volunteer Moderator Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    Maybe he uses lunar power :rolleyes:


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