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Where To Get Components That Meet The Codes

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Old 09-24-2023, 07:18 PM   #1
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Default where to get components that meet the codes

Hi all,

I'm dealing with a cluster*&$^ of a code issue. The county I'm in (which uses state inspectors) wants a passing electrical inspection for my solar setup that powers my well pump. I bought the parts 2.5 years ago using components usually used in RVs because I need precious little power. I finished putting together over a year ago and it has been working like a charm but the project is (was) getting close to done so I called in the inspection a couple months ago. The system is:

- 4000W 24VDC/240VAC inverter
- two 12V AGM batteries
- a single 210W solar panel
- a simple MPPT charge controller
- associated wiring and circuit protections and enclosures

Built all this with my electrical experience and had an electrician friend look it over with a thumbs up.

Problem is that when I went to call for inspection, the inspector informed me I needed a solar permit too. So I bought that. Then he wanted a full design package and cut sheets for everything. So I put that together for him. Then he said he refuses to come out because the first four bullets up there are parts without an OSHA NRTL sticker.

Now, from my work in the industry I know electrical inspectors like those, so when I bought my parts I looked high and low and couldn't find any for those size components. When it was impossible to by the NRTL part, in my last job, the local inspector handled it by doing a slightly more detailed inspection, but this inspector refused. Basically the line was: "I don't care if you tried to find NRTL, and I don't care if you have to throw away $5k of perfectly functional hardware that is used safely and every day by tens of thousands of people, or sold by at least 10 US suppliers, or installed by every RV manufacturer, I want your stuff to have a sticker"

So I looked again. Turns out my inverter can now be bought with a sticker ...for 2x the cost. Fine. I cannot find any PV arrays under 400W that carry a sticker. I cannot find a lead acid battery from anywhere that has a sticker. I cannot find a properly sized charge controller anywhere with a sticker.

Basically what it's looking like is that I need a residential scale system to get into the level of spend that carries these labels. I absolutely don't even need what I have and I don't want to drop $15-20k to appease this guy. Nor do I want to install $3-5k of wind reinforcements to support that many panels.

Long story short, has anyone in this fine forum shopped for smaller size solar components lately, with the same demands from inspectors? I have to believe I'm missing something obvious here but 2 months of looking and I'm stumped. At this point I don't care if the price isn't competitive, I just want a supplier who can help me get this project done!

skihuckster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2023, 09:57 AM   #2
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Default Re: where to get components that meet the codes

Sorry but I can't begin to help you..

Unfortunately you are experiencing gov't and legal safety BS in it's lowest most worthless form.

I had a couple similar gov't issue when building our house. I got both squared away to the inspectors satisfaction, but it cost me $$$ and incredible aggravation dealing with their worthless.. unproductive.. governmental boilerplate paper shuffling BS.

It's all about lawsuits now. If shtf and lawyers look back and find a 'fail' at the inspector, there's a BIG issue.
Bob Rowlands is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2023, 10:22 PM   #3
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Default Re: where to get components that meet the codes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Rowlands View Post
Sorry but I can't begin to help you..

Unfortunately you are experiencing gov't and legal safety BS in it's lowest most worthless form.

I had a couple similar gov't issue when building our house. I got both squared away to the inspectors satisfaction, but it cost me $$$ and incredible aggravation dealing with their worthless.. unproductive.. governmental boilerplate paper shuffling BS.

It's all about lawsuits now. If shtf and lawyers look back and find a 'fail' at the inspector, there's a BIG issue.
True enough. Fingers are crossed someone here hoed the same row and found a supplier.
skihuckster is offline   Reply With Quote
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