It's Canada's 150th birthday! For many Canadians, the July Long Weekend (and Canada's birthday) is also Cottage Time.
So what has the Solar Industry brought Canadians to help their birthday bash be more enjoyable? Many wonderful things - here are five in no particular order.
10 years ago an off-grid cottage had a propane fridge, which was lit when the family arrived "up north".
An electric fridge used too much power, so was out of the question.
In 2017, you can go to any appliance store and buy this wonderful 17 cubic foot fridge/freezer, which uses a miserly 431kW/per year. With a daily load of 1.18kW per day, that is a chinch for three HES 270W solar panels to handle all summer long. Cold beer ready for you at the cottage when you arrive for Canada Day - now that's progress! One energy efficient fridge and three more HES solar modules added to the system are all you need.
Battery Maintenance is so 2016!
More and more solar batteries are moving towards AGM. Advantages: Completely sealed, with excellent cycle life. Disadvantages: More money.
Rolls has always been the leading brand of solar batteries in Canada would not sell anything else. This results from Rolls maintenance free batteries only require customers to keep them charged. No watering, no messy tops, no acid spills, better value all around. Look at the high capacity S2-1275-AGM as a building block. That's a 1275Ah in a single 125lb 2V cell.
Save Watering - Save Your Batteries!
Some large Rolls battery banks have a lot of cells and the watering chore ranks in popularity with cutting the grass. If you don't keep up with both, they will both come back to haunt you.
Someone very smart figured out how to use a platinum mesh to recombine hydrogen back with oxygen generated during battery charging, and built a cap that makes that water drip back into the cell.
So with little investment, you can cut watering in half. Less water, and less risk the plates will be exposed to air because your watering time came a little after the fact. Check out the blog article on this subject here, and the Catalyst Caps here.
Get 20+% More Power from your Solar Panels!
If you have an older solar system at your cottage, you may have a PWM or Series charge controller. Although state of the art at the time, the art has changed. An older solar controller lets a 17V panel charge a 12V battery to 14V. But that leaves three or more volts unused, or in terms of watts, a 150W panel would never deliver more than 120 watts.
Cue in the new EPS MPPT Charge Controllers. The power drawn from the solar panels is fixed at its Maximum Power Point (17V), so now the 150W solar panel produces the most it can. On average, an MPPT charge controller can get >20% more power during the day.
Check out the EPS product line - there is a model perfect to update almost all cabin or cottage systems, and get more power off of the roof.
Celebrate Canada Day with a new, Larger Solar System.
Just when we think solar panels are not going to get any better, we see bigger, improved, more powerful versions arrive every day.
The latest arrivals are the HES-270s. More HP per area, and yet tremendous value. Still with a linear, 25 year power output warranty and backed up by top tier manufacturers with a proven product. Now, for a remarkably little amount of money, you can end power woes at the summer cottage. More toys, cold beer and maybe more hammock time.
HAPPY 150TH CANADA!