Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

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Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Mar 28 2021 1:16pm

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Hello, I have been trying to design a system for when I buy my house. I was hoping battery prices would drop by now but they are still crazy expensive in this part of Europe. Therefore I am trying to design a system with less or no batteries. I have no equipment yet, I am designing a system before I start buying what is required. I am trying to keep my upfront costs down.

First point, I cannot connect to the grid because of the bureaucracy here - I know that is the best option but unfortunately it cannot happen :( You need a license and a contract with the utility company to be able to connect to the grid and the companies are refusing the contract because they don't want to pay for any uploaded electricity.

There are several options I am considering but the first option is to buy an e-motorcycle and use that battery (something like the Zero 7 - 10kwh motorcycle) to power the house at night and to have extra reserve capacity in winter. I have read that solar panel output in winter is only a fraction of what it is in summer so I am designing a system to provide enough power to the house in the winter and then in the summer I will use the excess electricity generated for other needs (like air conditioning or riding the e-motorcycle).

I figure if I switch water heating methods and use mostly gas to cook I can get my winter electricity needs down to under 4kwh per day (although in an emergency I could cut that number in half). We get a lot of light rain and cloudy weather here in the winter so I assumed I would need enough panels to generate at least 4 - 5 times the 4kwh winter requirement. I am thinking I would need a 4kwh per hour solar panel array (8x 500w panels).

I am also considering building a small electric fishing boat, plus I have an e-bike. I was thinking that I could possibly purchase some smaller batteries for the home electricity storage (maybe 2x or 3x 1kwh batteries) and also use the motorcycle battery to increase the home power storage. I probably won't be riding the motorcycle too much in the winter unless the weather is better. Then in the summer I would ride the motorcycle for a few hours during daylight hours and leave the house running on and charging the 1kwh batteries. Or I might take the boat out for the day (with the small 1kwh batteries), so I would leave the motorcycle at home to charge and to power the house.

I am hoping that in a couple years battery prices will drop and a larger dedicated home system battery will become more affordable. But fuel prices are very high here so the e-motorcycle makes sense even if the batteries in the motorcycle are high priced. Plus should I run low on power I might be able to ride the motorcycle to a charging point and recharge the battery there, then use that power for the house.

So I am wondering if something like this is possible to do without outrageously expensive equipment. I imagine I would need the 8x 500w solar panels plus a controller. I would like to be able to hook all the batteries up at one time, even though they may not be the same voltage and amperage.


Another option would be to leave the house connected to the grid. Perhaps there is some sort of programmable breaker switch that can run the house on the solar panels using a small 1kwh battery during daylight hours and put all the excess energy generated into the motorcycle battery. Then in the evening the timer disconnects the house from the solar panels and connects it to the grid. In the morning the timer would switch the house off the grid and back onto the solar array with battery.

Anyway I am new to all of this but I am trying. :) Has anyone tried anything like this and have any suggestions? Thanks for reading.
Last edited by John and Cecil on Apr 06 2021 8:06pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by john61ct » Mar 28 2021 3:00pm

TL;DR

The kind of battery used for EV moto even more so is very small Ah capacity compared to what most USians would want available.

Lots of variables of course, check out insolation maps.

If you want to be "mostly solar" you need to size your kW of panel capacity for the worst case insolation conditions

which means most of the time you will produce lots more than you need.

If you determine your average total Ah used per 24hrs

which may well vary a lot by season

your House bank storage should usually store enough to get you by in poor insolation conditions for 3-5 days.

Of course if are happy to use a FF genset for power on demand, then just one day is fine, but then your "reserve" is the size of your fuel tank.


Also note, lead storage will be lots cheaper in the USA than LI, but if you are willing to spend thousands, go with LFP.

The higher voltage li-ion cell chemistries used in EV/motorcycles for high density

are much too fire-risky to use within a home.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Mar 28 2021 3:29pm

Thank you for your response. I am not in the USA, I am in Europe. On the solar power map my area is yellow and about 3.8 daily and 1400 yearly I guess. We have plenty of sunshine in summer but winters are cloudy and rainy quite a bit. The average daily power consumption would be 4 kwh per day. 8x 500+ watt panels should give me about 20kwh a day under ideal situations so I am hoping it will give me 4kwh during the mild winter. I figure I could get 2kwh of dedicated batteries (either 2x 1kwh lithium or maybe a couple of golf cart batteries) and a 7 to 10 kwh electric motorcycle lithium battery. The solar panels would be installed on the roof of a detached garage and the batteries and motorcycle would be kept inside the garage and not inside the house. Wires would then run from the garage to the house where they would connect to the home's existing electrical system.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by LeftieBiker » Mar 28 2021 4:12pm

You say that you can't connect to the grid, and then list staying connected to the grid as an option...

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Mar 29 2021 3:11am

LeftieBiker wrote:
Mar 28 2021 4:12pm
You say that you can't connect to the grid, and then list staying connected to the grid as an option...
No I did not. I said an option might be to connect the solar panel array with a very small battery to the house, and to also connect the house to the grid, but the solar array would NOT be connected to the grid and the grid connection and the solar array connection to the home would never overlap. Think of it like a gas generator and the grid. When the grid goes down a generator can be programmed to kick on, then when the grid comes back up the generator shuts down. What I suggested was possibly some insulated programmable switch that would completely sever the grid connection to the house in the morning, then wait a moment and then connect the solar array connection to the house. Then in the evening it would switch the house back to the grid. No power would be uploaded to the grid at any time, and thus a contract and license would not be required. Perhaps the battery might even be able to be wired in after the switch (so both the grid and the array could charge the battery), this way during the short moment that the house will have no grid connection and no array connection it will still be powered by a 1-2 kwh battery.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by LeftieBiker » Mar 29 2021 3:19pm

Ok, now I understand: you can't connect the solar system to the grid. That's a fairly common situation with DIY systems. I don't find grid-tied systems appealing, because with most of them you can't use the system to have power when the grid is down.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by john61ct » Mar 29 2021 10:31pm

Unless docking/undocking sub-packs for EV/portable use,

buy your whole House battery bank all at once

for best longevity

brand new Grade A genuine known-good cells from a trusted seller

ideally matched capacities (rare these days)

but at least same date stamp, production run.

If you do want a different cell model as well (why?) treat it as a separate bank, even if nominally the same chemistry.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Mar 30 2021 5:00am

LeftieBiker wrote:
Mar 29 2021 3:19pm
Ok, now I understand: you can't connect the solar system to the grid. That's a fairly common situation with DIY systems. I don't find grid-tied systems appealing, because with most of them you can't use the system to have power when the grid is down.
john61ct wrote:
Mar 29 2021 10:31pm
Unless docking/undocking sub-packs for EV/portable use,

buy your whole House battery bank all at once

for best longevity

brand new Grade A genuine known-good cells from a trusted seller

ideally matched capacities (rare these days)

but at least same date stamp, production run.

If you do want a different cell model as well (why?) treat it as a separate bank, even if nominally the same chemistry.
Yeah it is insane here. They passed a law a few years ago requiring a license and a signed contract to sell your excess energy to the power company before you can connect a solar array to the grid. The problem is the law also requires you to be paid a high value for any electricity uploaded to the grid and the power companies are refusing to sign the contracts. Battery prices are ridiculous here too (10kwh capacity = $8000 USD incl VAT) so buying a large storage system dedicated for a house is not a wise investment. So I am left with trying to find ways to not use a battery or to use just a small dedicated battery, but using a battery that can be used with an e-motorcycle makes more sense since gasoline is ridiculously expensive here as well (about $7.50 USD a gallon). I realize the battery won't last as many miles or years because of it being used so much however in 4 or 5 years when it needs replacing batteries may be much cheaper than they are today.

When it comes down to it buying a 10kwh capacity battery to go off grid does not make any sense at today's prices. It is just not worth it to save $0.25 a kwh for home electric use ( it would take 10 years just to pay off the battery alone (nevermind the costs for the rest of the system) and the batteries won't even last that long). A battery used for both the house and e-motorcycle would save the 0.25kwh for home use PLUS save $7.50 a gallon of gasoline every 50 miles, plus the environmental savings from not using the gasoline would be substantial as well. And I will have a lot of extra solar panel energy in the summer (due to needing many more solar panels in winter to supply the house) when it is sunny, just the time when I want to be riding the motorcycle.

I am not concerned with how they are hooked up, only that I can use the ev battery to power my home along with a battery just large enough to store the charge from the solar panels and power the house while I am riding the motorcycle. I do not see what the problem is? Do I have to design and build my own electric motorcycle to use 10kwh of standard lithium 48v batteries? Is there not an electric motorcycle out there which the battery can be used to power a home? I know Zero makes a motorcycle that runs on 3.6kwh swappable batteries (rather than a motorcycle with one built-in 7-10kwh battery), perhaps I would be better with something like that.

Another option, although not nearly as desirable, would be to have just one small battery and an insulated switch between the house and both sources of power (solar array and grid). One would think that just a simple high amperage 3 way switch would work to toggle between grid supply and array supply. I know people use these to switch between 2 batteries because they do not want a full battery to try to discharge all at once into a depleted one. Thus all I would need would be a 3 way switch on a timer installed right before the power enters the breaker box of the home, that would eliminate my need for a large battery at night and paying for grid electricity during the day. A manual switch on it would also eliminate my need for a larger battery during extended periods of severe inclimate weather during the day. A smart switch would be better to do everything automatically but I will take what I can get. I would prefer a system that utilized the motorcycle battery at night so I could cut my ties with the corrupt power company all together, but perhaps that will need to wait until battery prices deflate over time.

I am sorry about all the confusion. It probably sounds like I am a colossal idiot however I have a very unique situation here. The only way this makes sense is to power the house with a battery that can also be used to ride a motorcycle. Plus I love motorcycle riding but I do not like riding gas motorcycles anymore. I would feel better using electric, but why build a solar array just to charge the motorcycle when it could easily power the house too.
Last edited by John and Cecil on Mar 30 2021 5:28am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by RTLSHIP » Mar 30 2021 5:04am

old ebike batteries work nicely for lighting and other minor things, but to fire up a whole house you are going to need a lot more.
I have read that 48 volt set ups are ideal for solar.
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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by RTLSHIP » Mar 30 2021 5:06am

RTLSHIP wrote:
Mar 30 2021 5:04am
old ebike and cycle batteries work nicely for lighting and other minor things, but to fire up a whole house you are going to need a lot more.
I have read that 48 volt set ups are ideal for solar.
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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Mar 30 2021 5:37am

RTLSHIP wrote:
Mar 30 2021 5:04am
old ebike batteries work nicely for lighting and other minor things, but to fire up a whole house you are going to need a lot more.
I have read that 48 volt set ups are ideal for solar.
No, not e-bike batteries and not old batteries. A brand new motorcycle with a brand new high capacity and high discharge capacity battery. The zero 7.2kwh model can fully deplete that battery in a half hour at full throttle (so it can probably discharge at up to 14kwh of electricity per hour), thus it has a very high charge and discharge rate. And yes, a 7kwh motorcycle battery costs as much as a 7kwh house battery, but I can ride the motorcycle and not have to pay $7.50 a gallon for gas and the motorcycle can gobble up all the excess energy my solar panels will produce in the summer. This makes it much more financially sound than an expensive house battery only powering the house.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by john61ct » Mar 30 2021 1:00pm

Again, you are not taking in what we're saying. Step zero: determine your average total Ah used per 24hrs, at your chosen system voltage, likely 24V or 48V

although 12V is great for very low demand setups, like backpack / tent camping, not mains AC appliances.

The kind of battery used for EV - moto even more so - is very small Ah capacity compared to what most first worlders would want available to "run a house".

If you want to be "mostly solar" you need to size your kW of panel capacity for the worst case insolation conditions

which means most of the time you will produce lots more than you need.

If you **determine your average total Ah used per 24hrs**

which may well vary a lot by season

your House bank storage should usually store enough to get you by in poor insolation conditions for 3-5 days.

Of course if are happy to use a FF genset for power on demand, then just one day is fine, but then your "reserve" is the size of your fuel tank.

Go with LFP.

The higher voltage li-ion cell chemistries used in EV/motorcycles for high density

are much too fire-risky to use within a home.


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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Mar 31 2021 5:31am

john61ct wrote:
Mar 30 2021 1:00pm
Again, you are not taking in what we're saying. Step zero: determine your average total Ah used per 24hrs, at your chosen system voltage, likely 24V or 48V

although 12V is great for very low demand setups, like backpack / tent camping, not mains AC appliances.

The kind of battery used for EV - moto even more so - is very small Ah capacity compared to what most first worlders would want available to "run a house".

If you want to be "mostly solar" you need to size your kW of panel capacity for the worst case insolation conditions

which means most of the time you will produce lots more than you need.

If you **determine your average total Ah used per 24hrs**

which may well vary a lot by season

your House bank storage should usually store enough to get you by in poor insolation conditions for 3-5 days.

Of course if are happy to use a FF genset for power on demand, then just one day is fine, but then your "reserve" is the size of your fuel tank.

Go with LFP.

The higher voltage li-ion cell chemistries used in EV/motorcycles for high density

are much too fire-risky to use within a home.
Thank you for your response. I'm sorry, I have been doing my calculations in wh not ah because I do not know the voltage of the system yet. I require 3kwh of power during 24 hours in the winter. Summer usage does not matter, the winter is going to be the bottleneck due to all the cloudy and rainy weather. The summers are beautiful and it almost never rains with plenty of sunshine all the time. 3kwh of power would be 300 ah in a 10v system, 30ah at 100v, or somewhere in between depending on the voltage required.

The removable 3.6kwh modular batteries of the zero motorcycle are rated at 102v (116 max) and 32ah. Are you saying that the voltage of these batteries are too high to use safely in a home power system? If so what is the maximum safe voltage for a battery to be used? Perhaps I need to find a motorcycle that runs on 60v or 48v batteries instead? This does not make a lot of sense though. I have read that electric vehicles have been used to power homes in Japan for years, and companies like Audi, Ossiaco, etc are coming up with devices to allow an ev to power your home during power outages.

I am not buying a dedicated battery to use with the house if I cannot use it to ride around and save on gasoline, batteries are ridiculously expensive and they will probably not last long enough to ever make a return on their investment. The only reason the entire system will ever return the investment is because the solar panels are cheap. If I cannot use a battery that can be used in a motorcycle then it would be best to use the grid to power the home at night and during storms and then during the day power the home with a solar array and the cheapest battery possible (a couple golf cart batteries). However I live in a crazy country where you cannot connect a solar array to the grid electric because the electric company is corrupt and refuses to sign an electricity purchase contract with homeowners. Thus I will need to use some sort of automated switch to make sure the solar array never uploads power to the grid.

Hopefully this makes sense. :)

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Mar 31 2021 7:59am

It would seem reasonable to assume there is at least one electric motorcycle out there which has a battery that can power a house, <OR> that an automatic switchable system can be built to switch from grid power to array power depending on solar array output and ensure only one system will be connected to the house at any one time

But if not then the third option would be to build a solar system that would run only certain devices and appliances during the day without the need of a large (or any) dedicated battery.

Example: 6x 500w solar panels (optimal 15kwh/day) charging a 10kwh capacity motorcycle. When the motorcycle battery is full (or when the motorcycle is out for a ride) then the solar array power would be routed to a dedicated electric water heater with a large tank to make hot water. Should the water reach the highest temperature desired then power would be routed to a dehumidifier in summer or an electric heater in winter. A special fridge would be nice too, one that has internal compartments that freeze during the day so that it does not need power at night. Or a special washing machine and/or clothes dryer designed to run off intermittent power.

The point here is batteries suck. They are charging extorsion prices and it is not worthwhile to use them to power a house. They make more sense when they save you 1.60 euros per liter of gasoline, but not for saving .20 euros per khw of electricity (and even more so when the grid electricity is mostly green power).

The underlying concept here is to utilize cheap solar panels as much as possible without paying ransom money for a dedicated home battery system. Making hot water, making ice, and running appliances that have a beneficial purpose all make much more sense. In many parts of the USA folks just hook up to the grid to utilize solar panels and not need batteries, but here we cannot do that. Madeira has a unique system, they use water coming down mountain to generate energy, as well as wind power. At night when electric demand is very low they use the excess energy produced by the wind farm to pump water up the mountain and into a reservoir. In the day when demand is high and they need more power they open the reservoir and generate power from the previously pumped water. The system works for them because they already have a water power generation system in place. But the point is they used a unique method of storing energy because they did not wish to pay ransom money for batteries that will likely never pay them back for the initial investment.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by goatman » Mar 31 2021 10:30pm

how much do you pay for city water there?

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by john61ct » Mar 31 2021 10:30pm

Sorry I just do not believe your entire house consumption is that low.

Have you actually measured all the load devices? Created an energy budget?

500W of panels is tiny too, maybe 2kWh per day, so usually matched with at least 3-4kWh of battery, might be suitable for a camper, maybe a super efficient house where electricity is not used very much.

Backbone voltage will likely be 24V, maybe 48V at most.

Again, forget the EV pack for this usage, not just too expensive and too-high voltage and too-small Ah capacity, but much too fire-risky to keep anywhere near a living space.

What is your motivation here? Why not just use grid power?

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Apr 01 2021 4:27am

goatman wrote:
Mar 31 2021 10:30pm
how much do you pay for city water there?
Hi, I am sorry but I do not know how much company water costs here. Everywhere I have stayed so far water has been included with the rent. One of my landlords told me it was expensive and that they were considering switching to their well to also supply the house. I am hoping to do the same when I find my house if it already has a well for irrigation. If I am living in a clean and chemical free area then I would like to have well water supply the house and have a reverse osmosis filtering system on a seperate spigot on the kitchen sink for drinking and cooking.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Apr 01 2021 5:11am

john61ct wrote:
Mar 31 2021 10:30pm
Sorry I just do not believe your entire house consumption is that low.

Have you actually measured all the load devices? Created an energy budget?

500W of panels is tiny too, maybe 2kWh per day, so usually matched with at least 3-4kWh of battery, might be suitable for a camper, maybe a super efficient house where electricity is not used very much.

Backbone voltage will likely be 24V, maybe 48V at most.

Again, forget the EV pack for this usage, not just too expensive and too-high voltage and too-small Ah capacity, but much too fire-risky to keep anywhere near a living space.

What is your motivation here? Why not just use grid power?
Motivation. I would like to boycott the power companies (and other corporations), and possibly save money. I want a motorcycle that runs on electric because it makes me sad to burn gas and contribute to the impending apocalypse. It is the same reason why I am now a vegetarian, eating meat makes me profoundly sad. However I also do not like large upfront costs, especially when they are for items that can be grabbed and carried off in mere seconds.

I did not say I wanted to use 500w's of panels, I said I wanted to use several panels which are 500w each (actually they are 540w panels). Each panel should optimally supply 2.5kwh of power under ideal summertime conditions. I stated I would possibly use 6x panels in summer and 9x panels in winter. Even 10% of optimal for 9x 540w panels would be about 3kwh a day, that is what I used for my winter calculation. Panels are cheap (they pay for themselves in a year or two) and I have no problem buying more of them, plus they are not as easily carried away (especially when they are on a roof). Batteries on the other hand take decades to pay for themselves and are ridiculously expensive.

I am unsure if the ev batteries would be stored anywhere near "living space". The house I am considering now has a detached garage which is 5m away from the house, and the garage is entirely masonry built. The solar panels would be installed on the garage roof and the ev batteries (and vehicle) would be stores inside the garage. Wiring would then be run from there into the house where it would connect to the breaker box.

Yes 3kwh per day is an accurate number, I am designing a system to use minimal power in winter. In California my consumption was 7kwh a day, but that was for a 6 bedroom 2750sf home and I averaged 4 hours per day of 120" projector use for tv, movies, and xbox games. The projector alone was 1kwh per day, and the desktop computer, xbox, and 9 surround speaker 2 subs sound system was probably another 1kwh per day. In summer I will use twice that a(about 6kwh a day).

I have reduced my winter consumption by many factors. The first is all cooking, hot water, and heating will not use electricity (propane and pellets). The next is the refrigerator, in CA my fridge was a full size and used at least 1kwh per day. I will be switching to a chest freezer with a modified temperature control unit to make it a chest refrigerator. Consumption for that will be less than 200w per day. Here is a link to someone who did this in Spain, they claim consumption of 150 - 180w in warm weather.

http://www.aselfsufficientlife.com/ches ... -ever.html

Lighting will be high efficiency LED, the ones used the most will be cobs. Computer use will be limited to lower power laptop, and I will watch entertainment on a led tv rather than the projector in winter when power from the panels is limited (during storms, etc). The projector will be upgraded to laser as well which will save a little power but not much.

As for other things, when there is more power available I will do laundry, otherwise I will wash it by hand. I already do dishes by hand. And most things (except watching movies at night, etc) can be done during the day with power fed directly from the solar panels.

So again, I need a system to handle 3kwh a day in winter when panel output will be at it's lowest. If I get more power out of them then I can do more things (laundry machine, movies on the 120" screen, etc). And since I am building a whole house system sometime in the future I can just add a few more solar panels and buy or build a dedicated home battery when prices are reasonable. But why have a dedicated home battery, it is a stupid notion. A battery should be used for transportation and to power the home, that is the most efficient way to use one. The reason is becuase sometimes you generate a lot of power and sometimes you generate very little. The ev vehicle allows you to use that extra power without wasting any.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Apr 01 2021 6:41am

Also lithium ev batteries do not seem to be much more expensive than lithium home batteries. However lithium ev batteries save you from buying gasoline whereas lithium home batteries save you from buying electricity. Since gasoline is much, much, much more expensive than electricity this is why lithium ev batteries make financial sense and lithium home batteries make no sense. At least an ev vehicle will eventually pay for itself, but I doubt lithium home battery at today's prices will never pay back the initial investment. They are horrible investments.

Just because everyone is doing something does not make it right or sound. Look at what is happening to the world. EV vehicles should be linked to the home. Everything should be the same system, so nothing is wasted and efficiency rises therefore causing less damage. How many watt hours are wasted on home solar arrays (the ones not connected to the grid) because of a lack of battery storage. All that power could be used to drive an ev vehicle. And why have 2 huge batteries, so you can charge one with the other? I would prefer having several 50lb batteries with the ability to charge and use them with the house or plug them into a boat, motorcycle, car, tractor, etc. Modular power, otherwise make it so everyone can hook up to the grid with their own panels. The power companies in some places don't want to allow it because it cuts into their profits, even though it will help save the planet. They will burn the planet and kill us all just to make another dollar. They need to go...

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by goatman » Apr 01 2021 8:09pm

John and Cecil wrote:
Apr 01 2021 4:27am
goatman wrote:
Mar 31 2021 10:30pm
how much do you pay for city water there?
Hi, I am sorry but I do not know how much company water costs here. Everywhere I have stayed so far water has been included with the rent. One of my landlords told me it was expensive and that they were considering switching to their well to also supply the house. I am hoping to do the same when I find my house if it already has a well for irrigation. If I am living in a clean and chemical free area then I would like to have well water supply the house and have a reverse osmosis filtering system on a seperate spigot on the kitchen sink for drinking and cooking.
find a house on a hill side that has a creek or water source and go micro-hydro, even if you need to pay $60 or $100/yr for a water permit, you need 60ft of vertical head and 200ft of horizontal head pressure, you can just dump excess energy into hotwater tanks and electric baseboards

Zero motorcycle says you can charge in 1hr

i looked at solar and victron doesnt go to 72v from what i saw

so if im going to put solar on my boat id go with a nucular controller so i can charge my batteries with solar through the nucular controller

ask Zero what their batteries are and if you can charge the motorbike with solar panels through the controller

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by john61ct » Apr 01 2021 9:04pm

OK, sounds like you know more than it seemed at first.

Just know that batteries are not optional, the minimum that makes sense just as an overnight buffer would be 1kWh per 500W panel, and double that is still a very low ratio

not enough for a few cloudy days in a row.

Of course if you are happy to just do without your higher consumers until after 10am the next day no worries.

But do not expect "normal" first-world expectations without the bigger buffer.

______
Your motorcycle packs should be seen as a load not a source.

They will be charged from the House bank, most practically using a DC-AC converter to power a charger designed to run off mains.

Going back the other way will cost a lot more than the batteries involved in rare and expensive circuitry.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Apr 02 2021 7:13am

goatman wrote:
Apr 01 2021 8:09pm

find a house on a hill side that has a creek or water source and go micro-hydro, even if you need to pay $60 or $100/yr for a water permit, you need 60ft of vertical head and 200ft of horizontal head pressure, you can just dump excess energy into hotwater tanks and electric baseboards

Zero motorcycle says you can charge in 1hr

i looked at solar and victron doesnt go to 72v from what i saw

so if im going to put solar on my boat id go with a nucular controller so i can charge my batteries with solar through the nucular controller

ask Zero what their batteries are and if you can charge the motorbike with solar panels through the controller
Yes, I hear you about being near a running water source to generate power. The problem I have though is I am trying to stay away from running water and low sea level conditions. Intense storms that once occurred every 100 years now occur every 10 years, and the new 100 year storms are going to be horrific. I just read about how large areas of Australia are now uninsurable for floods due to the impact of climate change.

Here there are troughs (ditches, half-pipes, etc) of flowing water almost everywhere, and especially in the winter when solar panel output is at a minimum. Perhaps there is a way to install a water turbine to generate some power off these water flows. Or perhaps build a reservoir (like a pool) and re-rout some of that water flow during the day to fill the reservoir, then have it run out at night through a turbine to generate power. As you have stated it probably requires a long steep decline to generate power so it would require the right property on a mountainside. But at night the home would not need much power, even 100w an hour of power generation would be a big help.

Wind power might be another option for generating power at night, but I think it will be very unreliable unless in the perfect location (like the very top of a mountain or near the sea). It is a shame they do not make small wood pellet powered electricity generators. I like dumping the excess energy into hot water and electric baseboards, anywhere is better than high priced batteries. :)

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Apr 02 2021 7:40am

john61ct wrote:
Apr 01 2021 9:04pm
OK, sounds like you know more than it seemed at first.

Just know that batteries are not optional, the minimum that makes sense just as an overnight buffer would be 1kWh per 500W panel, and double that is still a very low ratio

not enough for a few cloudy days in a row.

Of course if you are happy to just do without your higher consumers until after 10am the next day no worries.

But do not expect "normal" first-world expectations without the bigger buffer.

______
Your motorcycle packs should be seen as a load not a source.

They will be charged from the House bank, most practically using a DC-AC converter to power a charger designed to run off mains.

Going back the other way will cost a lot more than the batteries involved in rare and expensive circuitry.
Thank you.

That is the problem, rare and expensive circuitry. :( I know 1 or 2kwh battery is very small. My intention is to use that small battery only when the motorcycle is out for a ride.

It might be cheaper in the long run to build my own electric motorcycle with a 48v hub motor that will run off high capacity lithium batteries that can also be used with the house. The zero may not be the right bike (even though as a motorcycle it may be perfect for me), but I am guessing it would be possible to charge it directly from the solar panels with the correct voltage regulator. But if the batteries cannot be used to run the house then that would be a huge additional expense. I guess I should look for a motorcycle with a lower battery voltage and see if those batteries can be used.

Perhaps I can buy a used electric motorcycle with no battery and then build my own battery packs (or buy them). A 96v motorcycle could be set up to use (2) 48v battery packs in a series to make 96v. When the motorcycle is parked in the garage those batteries can be plugged into the house (connected in parallel to make 48v) to run the house and charge from the solar array. When the motorcycle batteries are disconnected from the house then a small 1 - 2 kwh battery could be used temporarily to power the house and charge from the solar array. Any excess solar power generated can go into making hot water.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by John and Cecil » Apr 02 2021 12:29pm

goatman wrote:
Mar 31 2021 10:30pm
how much do you pay for city water there?
Hmm. I think I just figured out why you asked this question. :) I searched online and I found a prototype of a small turbine that produces electricity from pressurized tap water. I wonder how many gallons of pressurized tap water it takes to produce 1 kwh of electricity? They do not have an answer for that question on their website. Perhaps it can be tweaked so that it makes even more power by reducing the water pressure even more, and a large tank can be slowly filled all night up on a hill above the house and then the house can use that water the next day by means of a gravity feed.

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Re: Running a house on an e-motorcycle battery?

Post by john61ct » Apr 02 2021 5:16pm

48Vnominal is fine for a slow scooter, maybe at the high end for House bank usage, but such SCs and inverters do exist, and 48V can pretty easily buck convert to 12V or 24V.

And yes, 2S x 48V modules will power a fast bike at 96V, but the BMS if you want one will be the big challenge there.

A bunch of those modules say 6x what your bike requires, might be enough for your low-needs house, and give good flexibility thus better value for money.

Have the ability to charge the 48V sub-packs separately from the "mothership" House bank, then merge them when all are at the same voltage and you won't be riding the bike.

Rotate which sub-packs you use for the moto to try to keep the wear level even

Since you really should replace the whole set all at once, not mix old with new.

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