Controller-Inverter....How many APM will this produce?

Could you answer a question for me? I want to put a 500 watt controller to a pair of Harbor Freight 45 watt panels plus a 2000-4000 inverter to 3 Trojan batteries. So my question is, how many APM will this produce? 

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Hello Don,


The question is very open ended. If you are asking how many amps this will produce from the panels the answer is about 6 amps in a direct sunlight.  If you are asking how many amp hours the 3 Trojans will hold, that will require more information about the batteries (like there model and ratings).  The 500 watt controller will produce no more than the controller that will handle 7 amps that Harbor Frieght sells. The 500 w unit will allow for alot more expansion of your system. It will handle 11 of the Harbor Freight kits.


The issue you are going to have, without even knowing what you are planning on powering, is that your 6 panels will not be able to keep the batteries charged if the inverter is being used anywhere near it's capacity. If the 2000 - 4000 inverter (i'm assuming that it is a 4000 watt inverter) is pulling power you can only pull as much as your panels can replace in a day if you are powering items overnight and not during the day.


This is a really open ended question. Alot more info will need to be given before any credible answer can be given.




My main purpose for a power source is to run my water pump rated  @ 115 volts , 8 amps.  Couple of lights, bunn coffee maker.

I have purchased the Sunforce 30 amp digital controller and the Power Bright 2300 watt 12 volt dc-ac inverter model # PW2300-12. Knowing that I will be expaning at some point.

Batteries am still reseaching ,heard that the trojans would work ,any surgestions ? I have budgeted $ 400 for these.


As you may of had gather I'm new to the solar world , and any suggestions will help alot




It seems you have an idea of what you want to run off the batteries.  Before you decide on your system, you need to get a Kill a Watt Meter and check the power consumption of the plug-in appliances.  Then, determine how long the pump will run in a normal 24 hour period.  Do the same for all the lights you plan on using.  Add all this up to determine your battery size.  You always need to figure twice the amount of battery as a minimum.  This will prolong your battery life.  There is a lot to setting up a solar pv system in an offgrid situation.  Finding out it is not enough power what is needed is not a good thing when the lights go out.  There are several bright members in here that can help walk you through the figuring the needs, batteries, and solar panel input needed to accomplish your plans. 

Thanks, I currenly have 2 Harbor Freight kits. So I should purchase a Kill a Watt Meter to check my consumption before I pruchase the batteries ?

So lets look at some math.

Water pump 115v @ 8amps = 920 watts

Now this is the constant run but pump motors have a surge when they start and come on and off as water is needed. There might be a few here that have a water pump on solar and can give a better analysis.

Coffee maker - Mine is about 1200 watts for about 10 minutes.

Lights - all depends on what you are using. If at all possible switch to CFL or LED bulbs.

Caution some inverters don't handle motor surge well and some need Pure Sine wave inverters to work correctly and not burn out.

Once you use a Kill a Watt and get actual numbers including surge you will have a better idea. Right now your 2 * 45 watt kits will not handle your needs. As for batteries, Trojans are high quality but can be expensive. You might do better look for 6 volt golf cart batteries ate Walmart, Sam's Club or Costco. My Sam's club has 225amp hour 6 volt golf cart batteries for about $95 out the door. For $400 you can get 4 and have a 450 amp hour battery bank.

Search the forum for golf cart batteries and you can get more info

Thanks Raymond

    Getting educated, just went and got a Appliance load tester ammeter/watt meter .Will take test on appliances. Made a list of readings and will share my findings when finished. Which may take a week due to location of camp

         Ray if I need more panels can i mix larger panels  to my exiting, to get required size as oppose to adding on more Harbor Freight kits? And having extra parts that I won't need.

Read the following thread. It explains the options when adding larger panels to HF.In the following thread there is another link to more information on adding panels of different watts

Can I Add a 140 Watt Panel to my 12 Harbor Freight Panels


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