It’s one of the terrors of the high desert, and one of the reasons I wanted to build down in the hollow. Neighbors J&H and D&L, having built on ridgetops, have each been struck several times, and each have spent big bucks on elaborate lightning protection.
Yesterday was my turn. Nothing dramatic, just a snapping noise accompanied by a simultaneous thunderclap, and all the LEDs went out. Since it was raining cats & dogs I didn’t know at first the extent of the damage. I had a very bad moment when I saw the internal battery monitor didn’t work…
…but examination says the supply side of the system is fine. Apparently there was a surge that took out my display, but the batteries, charge controller and solar panels are unaffected.
Unfortunately my beautiful free 4000w inverter is scrap.
This doesn’t come as a huge surprise, in fact I’ve lived in fear of this day for quite some time. So much so that – of course – I have a backup inverter.
Which is now installed, and so in a truncated fashion I’m back in business. I say truncated because it’s only a 1500 watt inverter, made for use in a truck or RV, and it won’t support power tools. It will run everything else in the cabin, though. It is, in fact, the first inverter I used here and has about two years on it. So it’ll work fine, and I’m very happy this happened after the siding job was done. Before would have been a problem.
A final word, you might remember that last November my older brother built a kit that let me retrofit the cabin with 12V lighting? Well, I’ve used those lights all along, but never needed them before last night. Last night, though…if I hadn’t done that work, I’d have been reduced to kerosene. Instead I had nice electric lights. So always grab a better Plan B when one comes along. At some point you’ll be glad you did.
ETA: Text msg from Landlady…
Way to demo “two is one and one is none”