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#511369 - 09/10/19 06:08 AM Running power to the Pond
Freg Offline


Registered: 01/22/19
Posts: 43
Loc: TN
Has anyone run power a long distance to their pond? My pond is about 500 ft from electricity and I'm debating whether it's worth it. I already have an aerator running but would like to put in a small pond pump and also a ceiling fan at my pavilion. I looked into solar panels but based on my calculations I would need several just to run a small pump. Any suggestions? I don't want to spend a fortune on this, would love to hear if anyone else has done this type of project and what it cost.

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#511394 - 09/10/19 02:17 PM Re: Running power to the Pond [Re: Freg]
Paul FNG Offline


Registered: 07/28/19
Posts: 16
Loc: Clark Co, IN
I'm planning to run about 200' of 12/2 UF-B buriable romex from my barn (which is powered by solar) to my dock.

12/2 UF-B is $109 per 250ft roll at my local Lowes; 10/2 is $188 per and for 500' the 10/2 might be better from a voltage drop perspective.

I'm planning to rent a 18" hydraulic trencher from Home Depot ($95 for 4 hours) to dig a trench for the cable.

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#511408 - 09/10/19 07:08 PM Re: Running power to the Pond [Re: Freg]
nehunter Offline


Registered: 07/20/15
Posts: 116
Loc: SE, NE
Voltage drop will burn out anything that uses to much power. If all you are running is LED lights you will be fine. But if you run a 1 horse pump it may not last very long.

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#511436 - 09/11/19 08:07 AM Re: Running power to the Pond [Re: Freg]
Flame Offline


Registered: 09/12/14
Posts: 1220
Loc: Deep East Texas
Our electric co-op will run a new above ground service down to our meter loop pole for $2 a foot.Then all I had to do was run about 20 foot of underground to my dock and aeriator.That was the easiest way for us.Just giving you some possible ideas.
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#511438 - 09/11/19 08:33 AM Re: Running power to the Pond [Re: Freg]
Freg Offline


Registered: 01/22/19
Posts: 43
Loc: TN
Paul, what kind of solar out put do you have at your barn? I like the solar idea but don't want to have to put in a huge system. I actually found something on Amazon that was a 100 watt panel wired into a floating water pump. I'm considering just trying that with a deep cycle battery and seeing how it goes.

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#511442 - 09/11/19 11:14 AM Re: Running power to the Pond [Re: Freg]
Dave Davidson1 Online   content
Moderator
Lunker

Registered: 01/04/06
Posts: 14026
Loc: Hurst & Bowie, Texas
Agree with NEHunter re distance
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#511448 - 09/11/19 01:15 PM Re: Running power to the Pond [Re: Freg]
R&R Offline


Registered: 05/20/11
Posts: 361
Loc: Wash. County , IN. 10ac. pond
Freg, To stay around 5% voltage drop based on a 1 horsepower single phase motor @ 16Amps you would need a #4 copper or a #2 Aluminum. You can find the #2 Aluminum URD cable(Direct burial) for around $1.00 a foot. Just an FYI.
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#511502 - 09/12/19 02:04 PM Re: Running power to the Pond [Re: Freg]
Paul FNG Offline


Registered: 07/28/19
Posts: 16
Loc: Clark Co, IN
Originally Posted By: Freg
Paul, what kind of solar out put do you have at your barn? I like the solar idea but don't want to have to put in a huge system. I actually found something on Amazon that was a 100 watt panel wired into a floating water pump. I'm considering just trying that with a deep cycle battery and seeing how it goes.


I have three 200w Hightec Solar panels, purchased from fred480v on eBay and manufactured in Michigan City, IN.

Those panels are wired in series (63V @ 9.5A) to a Renogy Rover 40A MPPT controller, which feeds a 24V battery bank comprised of four Duracell 6V GC2 flooded lead acid golf cart batteries in series.

The batteries feed an AIMS 24V 2000w inverter/charger, with direct wire output to a load center. I've currently got circuits powering overhead LED lights, two 72" ceiling fans, and eight NEMA 5-15 120v outlets. Plan on adding an additional circuit for the dock.

I have three more 200w panels I need to mount to my barn roof, which will give me 1200w total PV and help maintain batteries during a run of overcast days; my panels being mounted sub-optimally (west-southwest vs. south) and subject to late afternoon shading reduce my generation potential.

A ceiling fan that uses a DC motor, such as those made by Fanimation and available at Lowes, use stupid low energy for the air they move. I have Slinger V2s and they move 6400CFM for only 14W of draw.

Depending on the pump you are planning to run and when/how long you plan to run it, could probably design a simple system with a single 200w panel, 20A MPPT charge controller, two 6V GC2 batteries (or a single DC31), and a 600w pure sine inverter. With solar, it is ALWAYS better to slightly oversize everything...

Full disclaimer that I'm no electrician, but it appears that a 500' run of 10/2 would keep voltage drop less than 4.2% with a 10A load.


Edited by Paul FNG (09/12/19 02:09 PM)

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#511504 - 09/12/19 02:29 PM Re: Running power to the Pond [Re: Freg]
Theo Gallus Offline
Moderator
Lunker

Registered: 05/14/04
Posts: 12461
Loc: Central Ohio
Resistance of various (copper) wire gauges over distance:


The bigger the wire you run, the less the line loss. The longer the run, the higher the line loss.

I have 50A 220VAC running to my LMB pond, daisy chained through two barns, over about 300 feet of 4 gauge and 250 feet of 6 gauge copper. I chose a 220VAC compressor for the aerator as the higher voltage cuts the needed amperage in half and also helps cut line loss. The compressor has run fine for about 12 years over this supply chain, and resistive loads (light bulbs and an electric baseboard) also have no trouble, but cheap 110VAC motors (blower on a milk house heater) don't like starting at that distance unless there is a matching load on the other 110VAC phase.

If I were running 500 feet to start with and buying all the wire, I'd go 4 gauge exclusively. And stick with a 220VAC compressor.
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#511564 - 09/13/19 03:57 PM Re: Running power to the Pond [Re: Paul FNG]
highflyer Offline


Registered: 07/09/11
Posts: 1905
Loc: East Texas
Originally Posted By: Paul FNG
Originally Posted By: Freg
Paul, what kind of solar out put do you have at your barn? I like the solar idea but don't want to have to put in a huge system. I actually found something on Amazon that was a 100 watt panel wired into a floating water pump. I'm considering just trying that with a deep cycle battery and seeing how it goes.


I have three 200w Hightec Solar panels, purchased from fred480v on eBay and manufactured in Michigan City, IN.

Those panels are wired in series (63V @ 9.5A) to a Renogy Rover 40A MPPT controller, which feeds a 24V battery bank comprised of four Duracell 6V GC2 flooded lead acid golf cart batteries in series.

The batteries feed an AIMS 24V 2000w inverter/charger, with direct wire output to a load center. I've currently got circuits powering overhead LED lights, two 72" ceiling fans, and eight NEMA 5-15 120v outlets. Plan on adding an additional circuit for the dock.

I have three more 200w panels I need to mount to my barn roof, which will give me 1200w total PV and help maintain batteries during a run of overcast days; my panels being mounted sub-optimally (west-southwest vs. south) and subject to late afternoon shading reduce my generation potential.

A ceiling fan that uses a DC motor, such as those made by Fanimation and available at Lowes, use stupid low energy for the air they move. I have Slinger V2s and they move 6400CFM for only 14W of draw.

Depending on the pump you are planning to run and when/how long you plan to run it, could probably design a simple system with a single 200w panel, 20A MPPT charge controller, two 6V GC2 batteries (or a single DC31), and a 600w pure sine inverter. With solar, it is ALWAYS better to slightly oversize everything...

Full disclaimer that I'm no electrician, but it appears that a 500' run of 10/2 would keep voltage drop less than 4.2% with a 10A load.


Paul,

Please read up on Vmp and charger voltage requirements for maximum solar power production. At 63V (voc I assume) you are loosing a lot of power to heat as your conversion rate is over 2 to 1 for a 24V system. Your Vmp should be less, so you are going to be closer, but nowhere near where you want to be to produce maximin power. When you install the other three panels, I would suggest three strings of two panels in series for better production. However, at 1200 watts, you would really be hitting those smaller batteries very hard in full MPPT production.

If you want my recommendation, use four panels in two strings of two panels and see how that works. Remember you should not hit your batteries with more than 1/6 their capacity (20 hour rate for Lead acid chemistry) when charging. If you are using AGMs the rate is even lower. Other chemistries vary as well.

Hope this helps.

And for the other two panels, sounds like you can use them all by themselves at your pond for other power requirements.
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The one thing is the one thing
A dry fly catches no fish
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#511566 - 09/13/19 04:31 PM Re: Running power to the Pond [Re: highflyer]
Paul FNG Offline


Registered: 07/28/19
Posts: 16
Loc: Clark Co, IN
Originally Posted By: highflyer

Paul,

Please read up on Vmp and charger voltage requirements for maximum solar power production. At 63V (voc I assume) you are loosing a lot of power to heat as your conversion rate is over 2 to 1 for a 24V system. Your Vmp should be less, so you are going to be closer, but nowhere near where you want to be to produce maximin power. When you install the other three panels, I would suggest three strings of two panels in series for better production. However, at 1200 watts, you would really be hitting those smaller batteries very hard in full MPPT production.


Appreciate the feedback.

The panels have Vmp of 21.052V and Voc of 24.335V, and the plan was always for two strings of three panels. My barn roof is not oriented for optimal solar generation and I've never generated more than 450W from my 600W of PV per charge controller data; for that reason I don't expect six panels of 1200W PV will ever actually generate more than a max of 900-950W.

The battery bank is currently four GC2s in series for 24V @ 215Ah; 1/6 that is 35.8 which is close enough to the 40A limit of my charge controller that I'm not worried about it...especially since in the very early days of my system (12V) the bank got depleted below 10V a few times due to an extended run of cloudy days which is the direct cause for the additional PV I need to install.

Figured I'd rather kill FLA GC2s while learning solar and configuring/reconfiguring my system than AGMs or LiONs.

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#511571 - 09/13/19 05:05 PM Re: Running power to the Pond [Re: Freg]
highflyer Offline


Registered: 07/09/11
Posts: 1905
Loc: East Texas
I used 6V golf cart batteries to start with as well. They are cheep and a best value unless you need a lot of power.

You will produce more power using three strings of two panels fwiw. But Again, I would try four panels before I added the other two. If the power is needed, so be it, but check you water levels often.

If you have a lot of cloudy days, then and only then will two strings of three produce more power. So your milage may vary depending on your climate.

Let us know how the upgrade goes.
_________________________
Brian

The one thing is the one thing
A dry fly catches no fish
Try not to be THAT 10%

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#511606 - 09/15/19 10:50 AM Re: Running power to the Pond [Re: Freg]
Freg Offline


Registered: 01/22/19
Posts: 43
Loc: TN
I think what I'm going to try is a kit I found online that is a 100 watt panel, 1000gph pump, wiring, and a controller for around $200. I plan on hooking it up to a deep cycle battery and we'll see how it goes. I'm a complete novice about solar panel but hoping to learn from this experience and maybe upgrade at a later point depending on how it goes

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