Product Review – Advanced Power Inc.
For some time I’ve been giving thought to writing product for items that I feel would be of benefit to the prepping community and so here is the first one.
One of the key aspects of preparedness is the need for water, a phrase I use often is that it doesn’t matter what else you have if you don’t have water. I was doing some research for a client who is looking for an off grid means of providing water at her homestead and that lead me to a local company.
Advanced Power Inc. (www.solarpumps.com) is located in Weatherford, Oklahoma which is about an hour or so drive west of Oklahoma City. They are a family owned company having been in business since 1988. That experience shows through in their customer service and product quality. All of their parts are made in the USA with many of the various pieces of equipment manufactured on site at their facility.
I sat down with Scott Miosi to get the particulars on the Advanced Power Inc. product line in particular a kit that they offer that I found quite interesting. The package was put together specifically for preppers. The Stay Prepared Kit consists of everything you need to be able to provide yourself with an off grid water pumping capability.
Two (2) 170 Watt panels
Aluminum Ranch Pump
Aluminum mounts with fasteners
Two (2) batteries with a battery box
The entire package is portable, the battery box comes with two 12V power ports. This allows you to recharge a wide variety of small devices as well operate lights. The kit will deliver up to 1,300 gallons of water per day @2.9 GPM maximum. Scott said that the flow decreases as lift and pressure increases to a maximum depth of 200 feet.
Scott and I had an involved conversation regarding preparedness and the need for water. Here is a portion of the discussion that Scott and I had regarding water.
SPC: Why would someone want a solar powered water pump system?
Scott: Basically so that you have control of your own water supply.
SPC: How long does it take to install one of these kits?
Scott: On average it takes between thirty minutes and one hour.
SPC: Are there any special tools or equipment needed to install the system?
Scott: Not at all, there are no special skills necessary. The kit was designed so that you only need a few hand tools such as a ratchet with several sockets and a wrench or two. Even the wiring design makes installation easy; all of it is easy to use snap together connectors.
SPC: What is the life expectancy of the panels?
Scott: The panels have a 25 years warranty; they are guaranteed to still be producing at least 80% of their rated wattage.
SPC: What about the batteries that come with the system? I’ve heard that a person can use any deep cycle battery with a solar system, is that true?
Scott: Yes that is true but the batteries that come with the kit are specifically designed for use with solar powered system. A standard deep cycle battery will last for about 1,750 or so cycles, that is one full discharge of its capacity and then a full recharge. The batteries that we include in the kit are engineered to last for at least 5,000 cycles so you can see there is a big difference.
SPC: How deep will the system draw water from?
Scott: It is rated for 200 feet but it will draw from deeper.
SPC: What is the amount of flow that the system will provide?
Scott: On average about 2 – 2.5 GPM, if it is a deeper well then the flow is usually about 1 – 1.5 GPM.
SPC: What is the cost of the kit?
Scott: It retails for $2,900.
SPC: Is there anything you would like to add?
Scott: Yes please, the pumps are made right here in our building using parts made in the United States. Also the system is highly portable, everything can be set up on site easily in not a great deal of time. You don’t have to have a fixed pole to mount the panels on, you could simply lay them on the ground if need be.
If you would like more information on API products you can visit their website at www.solarpumps.com and be sure to check out their videos on Youtube.
My thanks to Scott and the folks at API for their time and assistance with preparations for this article. Remember folks it doesn’t matter what else you have if you don’t have water. Stay safe.