Author Topic: Design my system  (Read 2509 times)

joebert

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Design my system
« on: March 29, 2017, 07:31:58 PM »
Hey there,

I would like to go all in on this, but I'm not sure what I need.

I have a main panel on my home, 200A service. 

I have a sub panel connected on a 100A service to the main panel.
- The sub panel has a 40A circuit for an electric car charger.
- The sub panel also has circuits to my finished basement.

I am about to add solar power to the home.  The inverter will connect back to the main panel, and support the whole home.  There will be a Tesla Powerwall battery on it as well.

So in this situation, if I wanted to be able to monitor my home, the solar, battery if possible, the vehicle charger, and some other circuits since I'm in there, what would you recommend for Spyders and various kits like that?

I appreciate any recommendations or hints you can provide.  And yes, this will be installed by a proper electrician.  I'm nothing of the sort.  :-)

Thank you.

pfletch101

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Re: Design my system
« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2017, 10:29:05 PM »
Is the subpanel directly adjacent to the main panel (no more than a few inches apart), or is it further away than that? The biggest potential problem is likely to be getting a reliable Power Line Communication signal from an MTU in the sub-panel to the ECC, which will probably be plugged in to a circuit served by the main panel.
Peter R. Fletcher
TED Pro Home - main MTUs monitoring utility and PV Solar feeds; 2 Spyders monitoring selected individual circuits

joebert

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Re: Design my system
« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2017, 11:07:36 PM »
Good question.  The panel is all the way around the house, and inside the garage.  Not even remotely adjacent.


pfletch101

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Re: Design my system
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2017, 10:40:44 AM »
Good question.  The panel is all the way around the house, and inside the garage.  Not even remotely adjacent.

Then you are definitely going to have serious problems monitoring individual circuits in both (main and sub) panels with a TED system. The best you are likely to be able to do is install a couple of MTUs (one for Utility and one for PV) in the main panel and one or two Spyders (depending on how many circuits you actually want to look at) to monitor the circuits served by the breakers in that panel, including the 100A circuit to the sub-panel. In practice, the vehicle charger will presumably account for the overwhelming majority of the subpanel load, and its usage pattern should be fairly distinctive, so you should be able to subtract it out and get a reasonable estimate of the contribution of the finished basement circuits to the total, but you won't be able to distinguish between individual circuits there, and will probably have to resort to a Kill-A-Watt (or similar) if you want to do that.
Peter R. Fletcher
TED Pro Home - main MTUs monitoring utility and PV Solar feeds; 2 Spyders monitoring selected individual circuits

joebert

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Re: Design my system
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2017, 06:32:52 PM »
Thank you for that information.

So you're thinking
- the Pro Home package
- an additional 200A MTU/CT Set for solar monitoring
- Spyder Mix to capture A/C, home office and home theater room circuits

Which Spyder would you go with to get that aggregate subpanel info, because you're absolutely right.  I charge overnight and it'll be an easy thing to monitor. 

Then I'd be able to put the monitoring box on a circuit that hangs off the main panel, and I'd be able to pop that on the network?

Any other gotchas or things you wish you'd done at install?

Again, I really appreciate your help. 

pfletch101

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Re: Design my system
« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2017, 08:19:28 PM »
Thank you for that information.

So you're thinking
- the Pro Home package
- an additional 200A MTU/CT Set for solar monitoring
- Spyder Mix to capture A/C, home office and home theater room circuits

Yes

Quote

Which Spyder would you go with to get that aggregate subpanel info, because you're absolutely right.  I charge overnight and it'll be an easy thing to monitor.  


Bearing in mind that Spyder CTs read zero at a non-zero current level that is somewhat correlated with their max rating, you always want to go with a CT that is rated as close as possible to (but not below) the maximum current you expect to see in the circuit it is monitoring. Depending on how much power you expect your unfinished basement circuits to use, and whether they will be using it while your charger is running, 60A CTs may be big enough for the subpanel feed. The 20A ones are fine for any 120V circuits with 15A or 20A breakers.

Correction added 2/23/2018: for others reading this thread, my original message implied that the maximum current for each 'side' of a dual '240V' breaker would be half the nominal rating of the breaker. A subsequent discussion in another thread has made clear that this was and is incorrect. A dual breaker trips when the current on either 'side' exceeds the breaker rating, so that the CT rating for one 'side' should normally still be based on the breaker rating, unless there is good reason to believe that lower currents will normally be seen on it.

Quote

Then I'd be able to put the monitoring box on a circuit that hangs off the main panel, and I'd be able to pop that on the network?


Yes

Quote
Any other gotchas or things you wish you'd done at install?


Check and double-check which circuit you are putting your Spyder CTs on. It is very easy to be on the breaker above or below the one you are aiming for when the cover is off.

« Last Edit: February 23, 2018, 10:39:29 AM by pfletch101 »
Peter R. Fletcher
TED Pro Home - main MTUs monitoring utility and PV Solar feeds; 2 Spyders monitoring selected individual circuits

joebert

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Re: Design my system
« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2017, 08:38:43 PM »
Thank you, that is exactly what I needed.

$700 later... 

Doh!

But as they say, you can't fix what you don't measure.

twwebster

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Re: Design my system
« Reply #7 on: April 04, 2017, 03:22:55 PM »
I just installed my system last night. Before I ordered I chatted with sales.

My house has a main breaker box with 4 additional breaker spaces on the meter pole over 80' from the panel in my house. My wind turbine ties in at this box.

I simply used a circuit breaker finder from harbor freight found which leg the outlet I planned to connect the ECC to and connected the main (Net) MTU and Turbine (generation) MTU to a breaker on that circuit.

When I connected to the ECC it had already found the 2 MTU's, works flawlessly.

In the house I already know which leg the ECC is on, I asked if I could (before buying) connect a 3rd MTU with 2 Spyders to monitor certain circuits in the house in the future, the answer was absolutely that is exactly what the system is designed to do.

So eventually I will add the additional MTU and 2 Spyders this will allow me to monitor most (the heavy loads, dryer, washer, oven, waterheater, AC, furnace heat and blower, water well, fridge, etc) of the house.

T