Discussion about the Power System PV Combiner (PSPV)

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My RE system: (20) Mission 355W panels 7.1kW, (2)Outback VFX3648 Inverters , (8) Rolls Surrette S550 @ 48V, (2)FlexMax80 Charge Controllers, Hub 4, Mate 3S, PSX 240
Location: Conroe, Texas


Post by LWolken » Tue May 25, 2010 6:28 am

I'm looking for some sort of UV resistant split loom conduit that I can sheath our PV wires with? What are you guys using? When we originally setup our PV array we did not use any conduit and I'm in the process of adding more panels and would like to explore all options. I've looked at the sealtite sheathing with connectors but its gonna blow my budget so I was considering some sort of spit loom with electrical tape wrap? Most of the wiring is on the back side out of the sun but I'd like to protect the wires anyway.



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Re: Conduit

Post by tallgirl » Tue May 25, 2010 10:06 am

Have you stopped by a supply house and asked what they've got?

And peach season is upon us. I'm going to ring up my client in Waco later today or tomorrow and see when I'm heading up to check out a 40KW system I worked on earlier this month. Your place isn't much further north ;)
Julie in Texas

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Re: Conduit

Post by SteveH » Sun May 30, 2010 10:18 am

I redid my arrays a few years ago, and the original ones had been up and working for 25 yr. I originally used regular pvc conduit/pipe to protect the 6 ga. wiring running to the house, and as one would expect, it had deteriorated in the UV and weather. I replace the pvc with regular steel elec. conduit [also very inexpensive]. The connectors I sealed with silicone. The alternative is to purchase outdoor-approved connectors that are waterproof. In areas where I needed to protect the wiring, as you indicated, behind the arrays and etc., I simply used some water sprinkler pipe, the black plastic stuff for yard watering systems, also very inexpensive and out of direct sunlight, being in the shade of the panels. Anywhere the piping would be hit with sunlight, I used scrap lengths of the metal conduit. It worked fast, easy, and so far is all holding up well and showing no signs of degradation. Of course I am monitoring this. I am at high altitude [8500] and we have to take into consideration greater UV damage and also rodent damage. For some reason the chipmunks and ground squirrels will chew the insulation from electrical wires as well as antenna cables, etc. [Ask me about my ham radio antenna.]

My arrays are not moveable, which would be a different story if they were. The regular metal conduit fits perfectly into the combiner box knock-outs. and so on. Very inexpensive. I don't know what a building inspector would say about my set-up, it isn't a problem here. An electrician told me that his co. uses the same metal conduit outdoors as indoors but with the outdoor connectors.

Well, you say that you were looking at all options.....

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Re: Conduit

Post by sparky » Thu Jun 03, 2010 7:00 am

Hey Steve! We can do things like you did in some parts of our county...but if I want it done legally and easily I use fleible liquid tight armored conduit. It is listed for 90C and from there on the junction box up to the tracker or movable array I use either marine or (can't remember, machine? ) wire to the panels mc's. This cable is extremely fleible built for vibration and movement and lastly covered with loom conduit as a easily replacible UV sacrifice. It is only used on the higher parts of the pole where rodents do not go, around here...Thank God!

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