Posted on March 26, 2017
Fortunately, there’s a great weather window coming up for us on Monday!
Unfortunately, the solar panels stopped charging the batteries on Friday morning.
Fortunately, we were able to contact Midnite Solar and talk through the problem with their excellent tech support!
Unfortunately, they couldn’t solve the problem.
Fortunately, the company had a dealer in Jamaica!
Unfortunately, the dealer was in Kingston.
Fortunately, they had the part we needed. The exact part! From an obscure little solar company in the US!
Unfortunately, the part was in Ocho Rios.
Fortunately, they could send it courier via bus, that night!
No more “unfortunately.” We managed to purchase a replacement part for a very technical piece of our solar charging setup, in Jamaica, on a Friday afternoon, picking it up Saturday morning. By 2:00 Saturday afternoon, the solar was charging the batteries.
The idea of diagnosing and repairing a problem with our solar array in 24 hours, complete with obscure new part, would be laughable in the United States—never mind this charming small island nation we’ve been enjoying for the last month. We can’t believe our luck. It helps that Michu built our electrical system from the ground up, and understands every little switch. It helps that Midnite Solar has such great tech support. But holy cow, did the stars align to resolve our little electrical issue. We expected to be alternator-dependent for the next month, at least; instead, the solar cells are back to soaking up the juice.