Sizing: It is good practice to never run anything over about 70% capacity for maximum life and reliability. That’s experience talking…30 amps or so of load on a 40-45 amp controller or relay and 45 amps or so on a 60 amp controller. The diversion load should also be sized at something larger than the hydro potential. The load wattage should be at least 125% of the hydro potential if using a 100% duty cycle load and much larger than that if using something else such as lighting which can lose a bulb that may go unnoticed.
Options: Motorized gate valves can be used as a primary or back-up and also used in a water management format. An example would be a pond with minimal inflow and a level sensor. When the pond drops the gate valve shuts off and opens up again when the level sensor returns.
No-No’s: open circuit controllers which over rev the hydro, or shorting controllers which generate excessive heat in the stator windings and rectifier.
Listed Equipment: Currently no one manufactures listed home scale hydro components except the controller. We are no exception due to the limited and highly specialized market. It is economically impossible for any of us to do that without raising the price so significantly that no one could afford to buy one. We have taken great effort however at making our diversion loads and permanent magnet power heads in a list-able, safe and code compliant manner.
Site Evaluation and Installation Guides: How to figure head, volume, pipe loss, wire sizes and power potential from a prospective site, and a how to install it guide, for home scale hydro as it relates to our products based on 36 years of experience.
Special Stuff: Occasionally we get requests for building engine driven battery chargers and bicycle type human power battery chargers. Information on request.
Hydro Repair: We can service most of the competitions products and we make some upgraded components for the Harris and ES&D hydro’s including replacement PM alternators ( our design ) for both that use a cooling fan and a much better bearing design.
Do-It-Yourself Parts: Pelton runners in DELRIN, bronze or stainless, hubs, nozzles, jets, intake filters, pond liner material, alternators and control panels, etc…
Balance of System Components: We stock a great deal of OUTBACK Power Systems Inverters and related components as well as some Midnight, Magnum, and Morningstar. We can build and preprogram an entire power assembly to make it as “plug-n-play” as possible. We also sell Batteries, PV modules and racking, Charge controllers, Sunfrost and Sundanzer refrigerators and freezers, SunMar composting toilets, and many other items primarily for the off-grid or remote living folks.