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Author Topic: My PowerVault - small milestone  (Read 12804 times)
Countrypaul
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« Reply #60 on: June 29, 2019, 03:57:31 PM »

Hi
Just a bit of an update.

Using the Powervault portal to look at the "device in" and "device out" readings i get a 73% - 75% efficiency. Seems really low but I have learned not to tally believe the Powervault readings and logs.
So:-

I fitted an import export meter on the main power cable to the Powervault and also a meter on the Emergency outlet cable.(this supplies a circuit all the time, Pass through during the day and battery overnight)

They have been fitted for nearly a month now

In                          106 kWh
out                        20 kWh
Emergency outlet   74 kWh

So that is 106 kWh in and 94 kWh out. This gives an efficiency of approx 88%. Seems a lot better. It has only been a month so will monitor longer term and see if it stays the same..

My daily grid import is now roughly between 1.5 kWh and 3 kWh her day. So the Powervault is cutting my daily consumption from between 7 and 8 kWh /  day down to the 1.5 - 3 kWh/Day


Iain

Do those figures therefore include any mains power used as pass through? If so won't that be distorting your figures to give a higher efficiency from the Powervalt than actually exists?
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Iain
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« Reply #61 on: June 29, 2019, 05:04:46 PM »

Hi

Quote
.Do those figures therefore include any mains power used as pass through? If so won't that be distorting your figures to give a higher efficiency from the Powervalt than actually exists?

Yes, been thinking of it again and I don't have a means of monitoring the 2 separately.

The only way would be to do a trial with the Emergency outlet circuit plugged into a house socket.

Will have a think later.
Iain
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Iain
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« Reply #62 on: June 29, 2019, 05:14:59 PM »

Hi

Just as a quick comparison
If I assume 12 hours pass through on the emergency outlet.
It would be down to about 80% efficiency.

Just have to work out how to measure easily.

Iain
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« Reply #63 on: July 01, 2019, 11:21:34 AM »

Quote
My PowerVault is working great, my import has reduced by roughly 50% and its just sitting in the background doing its thing.

In fact i have just arranged the expansion to 6 kWh which should be installed in the first week in June, very happy, its pushing about 40 kWh per week back into the house, we have a high base load with the fish tanks Etc meaning it only gets us to 3am before it runs out, and hence the expansion to see if that will get up to sun up.

Well i have quoted myself form 22 May 2018, 13 months ago.

We have had the device a little over a year and whilst it started out all rosey and nice, but it has certainly gone downhill, particularly in the last couple of months.

For most of this year i have had reporting issues with the device not updating the remote PowerVault portal, i admit that it took me a long time to sort it out and when i focused on it i fixed it with a full wipe and reconfiguration of the TP Link wifi extender that they fitted with the device, that got it reporting again, not a PowerVault problem, but their advice was at best "limited", particularly for a device that they specified, supplied and fitted.

Once i got the reporting working again i realized that i had a real problem and that the batteries when fully charged @ 18:00 were empty by 21:00,  so for 6Kwh of batteries i had to have a fault, our background load is quite high, but not that high Smiley. After sending them my reports they agreed that the 2Kwh battery extension had failed, personally i suspect the 4Kwh original deployment had failed leaving me with only 2Kwh working but either way they were on it.

Thats where the fun started, they no longer produce the PowerVault 2 and carried no spares to fix it, they did offer to replace it with a PowerVault 3 but they only come in 4, 8 or larger capacities, so the options given were to drop down to a 4Kwh and they would replace it with a PV3 system or pay extra for another 2Kwh expansion and they would replace my PV2 with an 8Kwh PV3 system, that is almost the option i went for, in fact i have asked them to upgrade TO the 12Kwh system (cost an extra 500) so that i can expand it to 12Kwh in the future if i wish too.

6 weeks ago this was reported and not once have they initiated contact with me, on every occasion i have had to chase them until i finally lost the plot on Friday and told them to book an install and get the invoices our or come and collect their piece of junk so that i can replace it with an offering from a vendor that can and will support their products. I have been promised that a date will be forthcoming for the installation of the new system today, but only time will tell if that's true, but at the moment i hope they do make contact, not holding my breath though.

Now the specs of the PV3 look much better than the PV2 at a technology level, not sure why they have felt the need to make it look so funky, i actually liked the look of the old one as it looked pretty much like a standard appliance, but as its in the garage out of sight i guess i don't care too much.

I am not sure if anyone else had had issues with their customer and product support but so far after 6 weeks i am pulling my hair out and have had just about enough, its a real shame as i think that it is technically a good product, and I love the fact that its a British product (always try to buy British if i can) but that's where it stops, they claim to be extremely busy deploying new systems but they have a lot to learn about product and customer support.

Im also struggling with the fact that they have changed battery technologies and dont carry any spares for the older technologies that they have been deploying.





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dan_b
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« Reply #64 on: July 01, 2019, 12:21:33 PM »

This doesn't sound like a happy story at the moment - I do know that they are utterly flat out trying to keep up with demand, but that doesn't help your situation.
Do you have a contact directly within Powervault who is dealing with your issue?  Drop me a direct message I can give you a contact name or two if it helps?
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nowty
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« Reply #65 on: July 01, 2019, 12:37:16 PM »

I find this very difficult to believe that they have none or cannot source a suitable third party battery to replace the failed ones.

I mean the batteries are a consumable item. What happens if the system is out of warranty. Are they seriously suggesting that you cannot replace them and you have to throw the Powervault away ?
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Iain
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« Reply #66 on: July 01, 2019, 12:41:40 PM »

Hi
They do seem very overstretched and now seem poor in responding.
I have had a battery replacement.(lithium) The delay in the battery arriving was trying to get someone to change it. I did explain I was an electrical engineer and eventually they agreed I could change the battery myself, this certainly speeded things up.

Mine does seem to be working OK at present. I went for the G200 as at the time the new one didn't have a maintained outlet. It does now apparently.
If I had issues with mine  I would now be happy to change it to the new one.
When mine was fitted I was reccomended to have a wired Ethernet connection as there had been problems with the TP link.
As I had to dig a tranch across the drive for the CT wire I put 2 conduits in. One for the mains straight to the consumer unit and the other for the CT clamp and Ethernet.
The only discussion we had was about the max 25 m run for the CT. they only supply a 10 m CT and a 10 m extension so not sure how you can actually get 25 m?
My run is 22 m so used 2 extension wires for the CT but shortened one of them to keep the lengths down.( it was only after I cut the wire to shorten it I realised it was actually a 4 core and a bit fiddly to solder.

Iain
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« Reply #67 on: July 01, 2019, 12:53:33 PM »

I guess that if you had a 4Kwh system then they would just replace it with a 4Kwh PV3, the problem is i expanded mine to a 6Kwh (also using brand new rather than recycled batteries), and they no longer offer a 6Kwh version.

I don't actually mind expanding it to 8Kwh or having to pay for the extra 2Kwh, as mentioned our base load is quite high so an extra 2Kwh would be welcome and 6 was the maximum that the old system could be taken too (i think).

But is does seem strange that they do not carry any replacement stock to support the older products (not that much older mind, its only 13 months old). I think their business model lacks a repair section, they seem to have trained installation people, but have not trained the installers to repair as well, maybe an in house section where the units with issue could be returned to base for repair would be a model that they could consider, but this seems to be lacking completely.

One thing i did insist upon, was that it would be deployed as a new model with a new warranty restarting from the point of deployment, which they agreed too, that was a bonus, I actually think they are a genuine company that have just expanded faster than they can cope with.

PM sent Dan, but I think i have the contacts that is need, thanks.

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dan_b
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« Reply #68 on: July 01, 2019, 01:39:24 PM »

Hope it all gets sorted.
I also went for a hardwire network connection for my PowerVault - wifi just isn't reliable enough IMHO for 24/7 "infrastructure". 
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« Reply #69 on: July 15, 2019, 04:22:43 PM »

well today is a happier day.

The installation was booked for last week, but that failed as they didn't get the device here in time and the installer refused to come to the property until it was confirmed that the device was onsite, this speaks volumes about poor logistics, not only experienced by customers but installers as well, but later on the specified delivery/install day a pallet did turn up.

Goods were confirmed to have arrive and were safely palatalized and in my garage, install rearranged for Monday (today), the installation engineer was bang on time as promised and they started looking at where it would be placed, naively i said just pull the old one out from under the counter in the garage and stuff the new one in there, that was when i realized that i had not fully researched what i had asked for (12 kWh chassis loaded with 8 kWh  of batteries so that i can expand it at a later date if i wanted too).

There was no way this new beast was going to fit in the space where the old one was located (small fridge size under the counter in the garage), first panic on realizing its size was "where to put it", considered the rear wall of the garage but i wasn't keen on that as the car goes in there and needs all of that room when i have it on axle stands for servicing or fixing the damn thing, luckily i had a spot that was filled with a shelving unit (and other various boxes of junk), so i pulled that all out, gave the floor a sweep and decided there was loads of room there even if it does mean that i have to rearrange the whole garage, truth be told its long overdue and there will be several weeks worth of sorting and throwing rubbish out before i can service any cars again. Loads of room in reality turned into "Just enough room" once it was unboxed and installed.

Now the old one looked like a fridge and was on wheels so i could roll it out of the way if i needed too, the new one however is bolted to teh wall and that is where it will need to stay for its entire life, no moving it now.

The installation team was excellent and was happy to wait for me to pull the junk out of the way, the previous model would only charge and discharge at 1.2 kWh so it only needed a smaller cable to the house, the new one however can (allegedly) charge and discharge at 6.5 kWh so all of that old cabling needed to come out and be replaced with 32 amp cabling.

half a days work and it was connected to the internet, signed off as working and the team left, as with all new toys i have been keeping an eye on it to see what its doing, this novelty will wear off quite soon and i will drop down to several times a day, then daily, then no doubt weekly, but for now watching th enew interface is quite interesting.

Like all of these devices it does not respond instantly to changes in the household load so sometimes the import kicks in to meet initial demand and at other times we are exporting a little until things settle down and it starts managing the demand.

I like the new interface but am disappointed with a couple of things, it doesn't state what percentage of charge the battery system is currently at, i am told that they are working on this and will be delivered by a software update "soon",  I had also hoped that there would have been an option to request reports on daily, weekly, monthly or annual reports via CSV to be requested and emailed out, but this does not exist in the current portal, may be it will be a future feature that will be added.

What i do like is the fact that, rather than waste (export) the solar that is being generated due to only being able to charge at 1.2 kWh as per the previous version this device can easily take the whole load from my 4 kWh PV system and store the lot until full if i don't need it, and supply larger than 1.2 kWh demand such as shower, kettle or cooking demand when it is required up to 6.5 kWh, that will certainly save a lot of juice from being exported.

Good technology, still in an early state with features still being written and distributed remotely that will undoubtedly improve the system and the web portal in the hopefully not too distant future.

Now they just need to work on their in house services such as customer and system management & support, logistics and other things that customers expect from a modern company, if they can improve their business processes to meet their technical capability then they will be onto a winner.

There is no doubt that the PV3 system is vastly more usable than the G200 system just because it can import and export more at any given time, even though the G200 was an excellent bit of kit, I'm surprised at how far things have improved in only a year and a half or so, who knows what these systems will be achieving in another few years.

Now the obligatory images, the first one shows the system charging well this afternoon, the second the size of the thing and the third one looks like its now just about charges itself up and has starting exporting the excess.










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Fintray
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« Reply #70 on: July 15, 2019, 04:40:01 PM »

Congratulations and have fun trying to avoid import as much as possible!
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« Reply #71 on: July 15, 2019, 04:43:31 PM »

Nice one, glad it all got sorted. As you say the PW3 is dramatically more capable than the G200 and has a much better portal interface so I'm sure you'll be satisfied!  Did you get second life batteries in there do you know (Powervault are working with Renault to re-used old BEV batteries in stationary battery storage systems like the PW3).

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« Reply #72 on: July 15, 2019, 04:52:11 PM »

No,
 i went for new batteries as the broken system that this replaces was specified with new rather than second life batteries, the company was very good about this (credit when its due) and never mentioned deploying 2nd life ones.

Start saving up again now i guess to see if the 4 kWh solar can effectively provide enough juice to keep this thing topped up, if it can i may add the last 4 kwh, if it cant then i will stick more panels on the east facing roof to see if i can extend that 8 month usable period per year, i suspect it will be more panels next
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RIT
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« Reply #73 on: July 15, 2019, 04:53:01 PM »

It's great to see a real picture of one installed. The Powervault website seems to use a little too much artistic license on their website at times.
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dan_b
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« Reply #74 on: July 15, 2019, 05:11:39 PM »

It is a lot bigger in real life than it seems from the website that's true.
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Mk1 ImmerSUN DHW diverter
4kW PowerVault Battery
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