QueenBee
Posts: 1564
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2010 5:14 pm
Delivery Date: 20 Jun 2011
Leaf Number: 2062
Location: Portland

Re: Enphase M190 vs. M215IG: Head-to-Head

Fri Jun 27, 2014 5:44 pm

kieranmullen wrote:Why do we have to guess? Is there some sort of prize involved? It appears to be an amphibian of some sort.
RegGuheert wrote:Just to let everyone know, I've added images to some of the posts above. Please let me know if you would like to see any others.

When I was shooting the pictures, I also took the one below. Can anyone guess what that is at the bottom right of the photograph?

Image
That looks to be the prized and rare green roof frog!

QueenBee
Posts: 1564
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2010 5:14 pm
Delivery Date: 20 Jun 2011
Leaf Number: 2062
Location: Portland

Re: Enphase M190 vs. M215IG: Head-to-Head

Fri Jun 27, 2014 5:48 pm

What kind of flashing/roof mounts are you using?

I'm glad i'm not the only one with gutters and bottom panel edges that look like that :)

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RegGuheert
Posts: 6419
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2012 4:12 am
Delivery Date: 16 Mar 2012
Leaf Number: 5926
Location: Northern VA

Re: Enphase M190 vs. M215IG: Head-to-Head

Fri Jun 27, 2014 5:58 pm

kieranmullen wrote:Why do we have to guess?
You don't HAVE to guess. You GET to guess because I am such a lousy photographer! ;)
kieranmullen wrote:Is there some sort of prize involved?
Yes! Bragging rights!
kieranmullen wrote:It appears to be an amphibian of some sort.
You are correct!

Also, some people LIKE to guess!
QueenBee wrote:That looks to be the prized and rare green roof frog!
Good guess, but I don't think that is what it is. It's not quite as green or smooth as those appear to be in the pictures.

I'm pretty sure it is a type of tree frog that we have around here. The love to sit in the skimmers in the swimming pool because they are like echo chambers and they can make the most noise possible in that way!

But I admit that I don't know what type of tree frog it is. Ours are quite small and come in a wide variety of colors. Cute, but LOUD!!
RegGuheert
2011 Leaf SL Demo vehicle
10K mi. on 041413; 20K mi. (55.7Ah) on 080714; 30K mi. (52.0Ah) on 123015; 40K mi. (49.8Ah) on 020817; 50K mi. (47.2Ah) on 120717; 60K mi. (43.66Ah) on 091918.
Enphase Inverter Measured MTBF: M190, M215, M250, S280

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RegGuheert
Posts: 6419
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2012 4:12 am
Delivery Date: 16 Mar 2012
Leaf Number: 5926
Location: Northern VA

Re: Enphase M190 vs. M215IG: Head-to-Head

Fri Jun 27, 2014 6:15 pm

QueenBee wrote:What kind of flashing/roof mounts are you using?
The flashings were only needed for the four roof penetrations used for the AC wiring. I used Oatey 11830 0.5" to 1.0" Galvanized Solar Flashing for the 1" plastic electrical conduit. Those are all placed very close to the center of a panel so there is little chance for water to get to the rubber part of the flashing.

The mounts are Unirac SolarMount L-Feet. All 88 of them. I'm pretty happy with how those worked out.
QueenBee wrote:I'm glad i'm not the only one with gutters and bottom panel edges that look like that :)
Uh, thanks. Yeah, the pollen just kinda dribbles off the end of the panels and the panels sometimes drip into the gutters, but sometimes not. And it all faces the driveway where every visitor approaches the house.
RegGuheert
2011 Leaf SL Demo vehicle
10K mi. on 041413; 20K mi. (55.7Ah) on 080714; 30K mi. (52.0Ah) on 123015; 40K mi. (49.8Ah) on 020817; 50K mi. (47.2Ah) on 120717; 60K mi. (43.66Ah) on 091918.
Enphase Inverter Measured MTBF: M190, M215, M250, S280

QueenBee
Posts: 1564
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2010 5:14 pm
Delivery Date: 20 Jun 2011
Leaf Number: 2062
Location: Portland

Re: Enphase M190 vs. M215IG: Head-to-Head

Fri Jun 27, 2014 11:34 pm

How are you sealing the roof back up? You think products like the quickmount PV flashings are overkill?

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RegGuheert
Posts: 6419
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2012 4:12 am
Delivery Date: 16 Mar 2012
Leaf Number: 5926
Location: Northern VA

Re: Enphase M190 vs. M215IG: Head-to-Head

Sat Jun 28, 2014 2:41 am

QueenBee wrote:How are you sealing the roof back up?
I used a high-end roofing RTV that I squirted into the hole and under the foot area. With all the pressure created by the lag bolt, I don't expect any leaks for the life of that roof. Hopefully over 40 years given the shade the PV provides!
QueenBee wrote:You think products like the quickmount PV flashings are overkill?
If you are talking about the QBase Composition Mount then I would probably say I'm more negative than that. I flat-out do not like the rubber seals that come with flashing. This is because I have had too much damage to this house from failed flashing in the past. But unlike a failed flashing for a vent pipe, a failed flashing on a PV mount could mean a very challenging repair. That's why my four flashings are located as close to the center of a panel as I could manage.

The exception might be if I wanted to mount something higher off the roof to permit better cooling or easier access for assembly and/or repair.

I would put my installation using Unirac SolarMount L-Feet over asphalt shingles up against the QBase Composition Mount any day.

With either system, I would never install PV over old shingles. It would really stink to have to uninstall a PV system to install a new roof!
RegGuheert
2011 Leaf SL Demo vehicle
10K mi. on 041413; 20K mi. (55.7Ah) on 080714; 30K mi. (52.0Ah) on 123015; 40K mi. (49.8Ah) on 020817; 50K mi. (47.2Ah) on 120717; 60K mi. (43.66Ah) on 091918.
Enphase Inverter Measured MTBF: M190, M215, M250, S280

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Nekota
Posts: 616
Joined: Sat Dec 11, 2010 11:16 pm
Delivery Date: 12 May 2011
Leaf Number: 2182
Location: Sunnyvale, CA

Re: Enphase M190 vs. M215IG: Head-to-Head

Sat Jun 28, 2014 3:13 am

There have been reports of M190s having a failure rate of 10% on the Enphase community boards. The key parameter is to watch the efficiency of DC to AC conversion. This data is available for the most recent 5 days of production for each inverter for 5 minute intervals during power production. I have 20 M215 that are 18 months old and two of the panels have about 7% lower output than the most productive panels. I know temperature is a factor and observe a temperature gradient across the array consistent with the prevailing bay breeze. But there is a difference in efficiency too, the accuracy of the 5min measurements require using most of the data to see offsets and the two panels in question do show significant differences in DC to AC efficiency. I need to look at the performance warranty of the m215 instead of the panels (LG 260) as I was thinking it was the panels and not the inverters.

You can see the system output at PVOutput.org as Leafhouse.

When I get more time I'd like to put the 5 min data into a SQL database for analysis.
Res 20Apr2010 / Ordered 27Sep2010 / Delivered 12May2011

PV System

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RegGuheert
Posts: 6419
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2012 4:12 am
Delivery Date: 16 Mar 2012
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Location: Northern VA

Re: Enphase M190 vs. M215IG: Head-to-Head

Sat Jun 28, 2014 3:30 am

Nekota wrote:There have been reports of M190s having a failure rate of 10% on the Enphase community boards.
Please have a look at this thread: Enphase field MTBF: M190: ~60 Years M215: ~1300 Years. Some sites have had over 1/3 of their M190s fail in a few years.
Nekota wrote:The key parameter is to watch the efficiency of DC to AC conversion. This data is available for the most recent 5 days of production for each inverter for 5 minute intervals during power production. I have 20 M215 that are 18 months old and two of the panels have about 7% lower output than the most productive panels. I know temperature is a factor and observe a temperature gradient across the array consistent with the prevailing bay breeze. But there is a difference in efficiency too, the accuracy of the 5min measurements require using most of the data to see offsets and the two panels in question do show significant differences in DC to AC efficiency. I need to look at the performance warranty of the m215 instead of the panels (LG 260) as I was thinking it was the panels and not the inverters.

You can see the system output at PVOutput.org as Leafhouse.

When I get more time I'd like to put the 5 min data into a SQL database for analysis.
Since I only found a single failure out of thousands of M215s, I am interested in the issues you are seeing. Can we continue this discussion in the other thread, please?
RegGuheert
2011 Leaf SL Demo vehicle
10K mi. on 041413; 20K mi. (55.7Ah) on 080714; 30K mi. (52.0Ah) on 123015; 40K mi. (49.8Ah) on 020817; 50K mi. (47.2Ah) on 120717; 60K mi. (43.66Ah) on 091918.
Enphase Inverter Measured MTBF: M190, M215, M250, S280

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RegGuheert
Posts: 6419
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2012 4:12 am
Delivery Date: 16 Mar 2012
Leaf Number: 5926
Location: Northern VA

Re: Enphase M190 vs. M215IG: Head-to-Head

Sat Jun 28, 2014 7:32 am

Here is a bit of data even if it is anything but Earth-shattering:

Image

The above image shows the operation of the array at 9:25AM on Tuesday. At that time, the nine inverters shown in the field array were in the top row of the house which is currently blank.

Image

This image shows the operation of the array this morning (Saturday) at 9:25AM.

If you compare the new nine inverters with the six on the top row of the garage that are out of the shade both before and after the change, there is no obvious improvement or loss in terms of power generation at this power level.

It will be more interesting the next time we have a cloudless day to see if the M215s can manage to harvest more energy than the M190s, or not.
RegGuheert
2011 Leaf SL Demo vehicle
10K mi. on 041413; 20K mi. (55.7Ah) on 080714; 30K mi. (52.0Ah) on 123015; 40K mi. (49.8Ah) on 020817; 50K mi. (47.2Ah) on 120717; 60K mi. (43.66Ah) on 091918.
Enphase Inverter Measured MTBF: M190, M215, M250, S280

dsinned
Posts: 152
Joined: Fri Jun 27, 2014 12:20 pm

Re: Enphase M190 vs. M215IG: Head-to-Head

Sat Jun 28, 2014 9:28 am

I am the owner of an Enphase M215 microinverters (17) system that had one "failure" during the first year of operation. I've posted about this on the Enphase Community forum in detail.

It was NOT an outright FAILURE. It was more accurately a partial failure due to accelerated degradation of that one M215's internal DC to AC conversion efficiency. Using Enlighten Manager I was able to quantify the amount of efficiency loss. Within 6 months of initial operation, the efficiency was down to 85%; a full 10% below spec. Enphase spec's say the M215 has a CEC Weighted Efficiency of 96%.

After nine months I was successful in getting a RMA warranty replacement from Enphase for that particular M215. It took a lot of "convincing" to get them to issue the RMA, and accept my findings. At first, they insisted on doing needless panel/inverter swapping as a more traditional troubleshooting measure. This resulted in my Installer having to make a total of "4" truck roll to my array. If only the suspect inverter could have been swapped out with a spare on the FIRST service call, a whole lot of extra expense could have been avoided. However, I found that carrying a "spare" M215 on service calls is not authorized. Say what?

Enlighten Manager has a lot of troubleshooting usefulness in this regard, but it seems not many people in the PV community are all that knowledgeable in using Ohm's Law. :mrgreen:

I wish Enlighten included an "at-a-glance" feature to assess internal efficiencies of each Microinverter in an array. This would be extremely beneficial in the periodic monitoring of an array's ongoing "health". The reason this feature - although very easy to implement - does not exist, is intuitively obvious; many more warranty claims would result and cost Enphase millions in lost revenue!

Nevertheless, I believe there may be countless other Enphase based arrays with similar microinverter internal conversion efficiency deficiencies, but without this feature in the monitoring platform, the system owners are none the wiser. I have posted numerous suggestion on the Community forum to add this feature all to no avail (again, not surprising). But, anyone that can do a simple Ohm's Law calculation can "see" what is truly going on behind the scenes.

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