The frog in the inverter

Photo by Robert Zunikoff on Unsplash

One of our solar retailers recently told us this story about what makes Solar Analytics so special.

Noel from North Queensland explained that Solar Analytics alert system had been “shouting at him” about a solar system which was underperforming.

“I kept getting alerts saying something was wrong. Solar Analytics was telling me that the system was operational but was producing significantly less energy than expected.

So, I called the customer and asked them to pop outside and check their inverter. The customer said yep, the green light is on, and it is producing power”.

This site happened to have two identical inverters and solar arrays, so Noel could see the difference in the system output, using Solar Analytics. All Noel could surmise at this stage was that the inverters were both switched on and no breakers had blown. Something else must be happening, and probably affecting just one inverter so he got his team to swing by the site a few days later. They suspected either a problem with a rooftop isolator or perhaps birds or rodents had chewed through a solar cable.

Inverters — Goulburn Solar

After a quick look to see both inverters were indeed operational, the team clambered around looking for problems, but couldn’t find anything physically wrong on the roof. They focused their attention back on the inverters and realised quickly that one inverter was operating much hotter than normal.

They de-powered the system and removed the inverter cover, instantly recognising a smell familiar to all North Queenslander tradies – toasted frog.

Lo and behold, a beloved green tree frog had followed the warmth and ended up with his little head jammed in the cooling fan (as small solace, it would have been a pretty quick end). This had caused the inverter to limit its power output when it got hot.

Once cleared, they re-powered the system and the fan spluttered back to life.

Over the next few days, they watched as the system performance came back to normal and full power was restored on both inverters.

Noel went on to explain “This highlighted the incredible value of your True Performance monitoring which detected underperformance. As far as the customer was concerned it was working and even the inverter’s own app couldn’t tell me it was underperforming. Had this gone on for any length of time, it would have cost the customer around $500 per quarter in lost savings"

" Solar Analytics just paid for itself, and my customer couldn’t be happier.”

More on Solar Analytics' True Performance

Using satellite, BOM and local weather data, Solar Analytics patented True Performance algorithm automatically protects your valuable solar savings and will let you know if your solar system starts producing less solar power than it should.

Find out more about all the other ways Solar Analytics can help you save more with your solar.

Published: 30th August 2022

Solar Analytics
We are Australian Photovoltaic Engineers, Software Developers, Scientists, Solar Technicians and Designers, all passionate about sustainable energy and the power of solar.
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