We faced quite a few trials during our 6 week stay in the bush. None of them were major issues but they were stress causers and annoyances. On the flip side, I learned many new things by working through some of these problems.
Our first day there, I turned off our DC/AC inverter (to conserve power at night). When I needed it back on, it would not turn on. Nothing we tried turned it back on and so we had to switch it out for another inverter. This inverter was a 24 volt inverter whereas the first was a 12 volt inverter. Therefore, we had to ascend to the roof and rewire the solar panels, and then drop from 3 batteries down to 2 and rewire them. With that completed, we thought everything was good to go. For the next 9 days our batteries kept dropping and dropping and I could not figure out why. The sun stayed hidden for most of those 9 days so I thought that was a main reason why they were not getting charged and we ran the generator here and there to charge them up. The batteries kept getting lower everyday and we rechecked our wiring and everything looked like it was hooked up right. Finally, we figured it out. We had not reprogrammed the Outback Controller for a 24 volt system. It was still programmed for 12 volts and the batteries had received zero charge from the solar panels for 9 days. After reprogramming, the batteries still were not working right and so I unhooked everything from them and tested them with a voltage meter. One was shot, so I switched it out with the spare and everything worked great from that moment on. And now I know so much more about solar powered electrical systems!
As soon as our power issues were over gas and fridge issues arose. 11 days in the bush and our first propane tank (hooked to our stove and fridge) was empty. Well, that’s way too fast for one to run out so I checked the line for a leak. I found a leak, we fixed it, and life moved on. 14 days later our next propane tank was empty. Once again I checked the lines. I found another leak, fixed it, and we thought we were good to go. When I turned the fridge back on, it chose not to work. First, I tried cleaning the burner real good. That did not do the trick. Next we turned the fridge over on its head and let it sit for 24 hours. I banged on the pipes in the back with a rubber mallet too. I turned it back over and left it another 24 hours and then we turned it back on. It worked beautifully!
I think, but am not sure, that the moment our fridge starting working again our water went out. When your daughter has lice, you tend to want to bathe her, daily. Anyways, water was off and on during our stay there but it was on more than it was off and I think it was never off for more than 24 hours.
Our fourth and fifth week we all spent some time being sick. We had rain for much of the first half and sun for most of the second half of our 6 week stay. Well, I think that’s mostly it for the trials, other than mice in the house and noisy roosters right outside. Oh yeah, Maisie stepped in a fire too.