OVO Community Blog - Issue 4

  • 1 July 2019
  • 8 replies
OVO Community Blog - Issue 4
Userlevel 7

Summer was back - For a day at least...


Hope you all had fab weekends. The sun certainly did shine over the weekend, so really keeping everything crossed that this will continue. It will definitely help the renewable energy generation via solar panels! I expect some of you had some great generation over the weekend, if you have solar panels fitted to your home. Let us know if you benefited from free energy supplied by the sunshine this weekend! 🌞

Also anyone moving into a new home with solar panels? This is a great topic that will help answer any questions you have about how it all works.

Also if you are an EV owner, with solar panels, our UX team want to hear from you, check out this topic and get involved. 🚗🏡

Also anyone go to Glastonbury at the weekend? If you did, you had a great weather for it! I watched quite a lot of it on TV in the evenings and it was awesome! Let us know if you went? 🎶



DIY SOS...just kidding

The kitchen is coming along nicely, big progress made on decorating this weekend (at the expense of getting much time in the sunshine, but hey ho, needs must!). Here is a sample of where we are.





Lighting wise, taken some advice from our very own @Transparent and looking at LED options to get these fitted before we tile so we can cover up a while host of holes and cables etc behind them! It's great to see a few topics on energy efficient lighting around on the forum, all useful stuff!! 💡




The week ahead:

Where do I start. We are still working through feedback from the VIP day and starting to put a few things into practice already to make the forum a better place for everyone involved. The new Members lounge, gives everyone a space to chat, find out whats going on and helps us highlight anything really topical that might be interesting to all of you. But we want you to all share stuff too, so if you spot a news article you think would be interesting for the rest of the community, then share it, create some conversation and get others involved. Also, if you own any of our products, then we'd love for you to share your story of how you are getting on with your energy bills, or your Smart Charger, or even the Smart Heating system.





More to come over the next few weeks on future developments, but make sure you share your own feedback on the forum and what you'd like to see more of over here. If you don't tell, us we can't change it!

Have a great week. 😄

Community Manager



8 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +5
Well I too have been busy in my kitchen over the weekend @Darran_OVO ☺️

As for the LED lighting stuff, I'm increasingly moving towards fixed LED units, rather than LED bulbs. I hide the driver electronics out of site (above a ceiling or a cupboard, for example) and then run the low-voltage supply to the emitter itself, which is very thin.

The lifetime of an LED is greatly affected by its operating temperature. So if I mount it on a piece of aluminium to keep it cool, and place the electronics elsewhere, then I should get a good 15-years out of it.

Here's a selection of LED emitters I've been trying out:

And here's a mid-white (4000k) strip stuck to aluminium-angle beneath a kitchen cupboard. It illuminates the work-surface below and the hinge-down spice rack too.

I find it much easier to experiment with such lighting once I've disposed of the problem with having mains electricity! A 24v supply means I can safely move LED units around while they are operating until I finally stick them in place with glue that transfers heat.

Here's a couple of suitable 24v electronic "transformers" suitable for placing above a kitchen cupboard where no one will notice. The one on the right is completely waterproof, and can even be used outside.

These are both manufactured by the Chinese company, Sanpu, and can be bought from Amazon at around £37 & £27 respectively.

Given that LED emitters can output 100 lumens/watt, you'd need about 15w to effectively illuminate a living room. So the 350w unit is enough for the entire house!
Userlevel 5
If you do install LED strips, and buy cheap ones off ebay/china like I do then be aware that just powering a long string of LEDs (metres) from one end will lead to an observable drop in intensity along the strip. Centre feed or even better 1/4 and 3/4 for long runs.
Userlevel 7
Badge +5
Good point @NoPoke

This is why I tend to avoid using 12v within the home. A drop of ½V is obviously going to be less significant on a 24v strip.

And, like you, I do tend to buy stuff direct from China. I try to track down the real manufacturer rather than a 3rd party seller who's "borrowed" their brand-name for his online store!

Overall, I want to move away from the LED strips and directly drive the emitter. This means that the final connection wire will be running Constant-Current, and therefore voltage drop is only as issue as far as energy-loss (heating effect) is concerned.

I also put together my own computers which operate on a DC power supply input like this:

This means I can use solar-power to run lights and computers without drawing from the mains grid.

Low-energy devices are becoming more commonly available, but too many are still supplied with an inefficient Mains-power adaptor. It's also common to see these left plugged in even when the device they feed has been moved! [Hint - teenagers!]
Userlevel 6
Badge +1
Friday to Sunday I generated 44 free kWh from the currant bun, better in the week, Monday to today (Thursday) a further 62kWh and still generating just under 1kWh. needless to say the Leaf has been fully charged for nothing! 😎
Userlevel 6
That jam looks amazing @Transparent !
Userlevel 7
Badge +5
Hah! So here we are discussing innovative low-energy lighting...

... and @Nancy_OVO likes the jam! 😜
Userlevel 4
All you LED lighting users, please be aware that many power supplies don't meet the EU emissions regulations. So when you have long wires leading to long strips of LEDs, they act like transmitters with good aerials and can cause a lot of bother to Amateur Radio. Please be co-operative if the local radio ham 'DF's (direction finding) on your house and politely asks you to switch some lights off to see if it is they that are causing a problem. The Radio Society of Great Britain reports many such cases. It's particularly frustrating when a home owner has just paid a huge amount for a kitchen makeover with all the latest lighting, and the installer uses dodgy gear.


Userlevel 6
Hah! So here we are discussing innovative low-energy lighting...

... and @Nancy_OVO likes the jam! 😜

Easily distracted by food, me 🍰