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New install. Newbie. Panels, Powerwalls and "Neo Gateway"

New install. Newbie. Panels, Powerwalls and "Neo Gateway"

Tesla just installed Solar/Powerwalls. The system has not been activated yet. I’m just starting to read the documents.

I was given a little black Internet connected device. It’s about 5 x 5 inches and 1/2 inch thick. It says “SolarCity” on the front.

From what I’ve read this is called a “Neo Gateway”.

Do I need this?

I’m thinking not. From what I’ve read, because I have Powerwalls, a “Backup Gateway” is part of my system. This “Backup Gateway” is connected to the Internet and appears to have all of the functionality to observe the juice from my utility provider, the photovoltaic system, and the Powerwalls.

Furthermore, It appears that there is a MySolarCity app that appears deprecated.

My Tesla app (I also own a Model 3) appears to see the Solar/Powerwall system just fine.

Is it fair to say with new Tesla Solar/Powerwall installations that the SolarCity Neo Gateway and MySolaryCity app are just holdovers from a time when dinosaurs roamed the Earth and are no longer part of new Solar/Powerwall installations?

If this is the case, I’m wondering why they gave me this Neo Gateway?

What am I missing?

gregbrew | 24 novembre 2019

If your system was purchased outright, there's little utility to the tiny communications gateway box, as the big Tesla Energy Gateway (TEG) box that's part of the Powerwall installation gives adequate performance data, but IIRC, it doesn't provide "revenue grade" accuracy. If you didn't purchase your system, but have a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Tesla, they might require the highly accurate revenue-grade data that the inverter provides through the little communications gateway. This would be the highly accurate production data that Tesla would need to bill you.

As a side note, the communications gateway still sends data to the legacy MySolarCity site, as well as the much older Solar Guard site, both of which can still be accessed through a web browser,...if you know where to look.

Atom12 | 24 novembre 2019

Thank you gregbrew, that all makes sense.

I purchased the system outright.

I noticed that the "solaredge HD Wave" inverter has an antenna on the side. Currently, this unit is in the OFF position and the NEO Gateway displays "No Signal". I assume once the inverter is turned on it will communicate with the NEO.

So, in my case, it sounds like this is just extra, but not needed, data for Tesla. That seems reasonable.

Just seeing my utility usage in real time on my Tesla app is already pretty cool. Once my system is activated I will explore what else is out there.

gregbrew | 25 novembre 2019

Yup. The inverter communicates with the NEO Gateway box via the Zigbee radio protocol, and the gateway communicates with the Tesla servers via your home's *wired* Ethernet network to your host ISP and on to Tesla. No WiFi is involved in this link.

I had to put my little gateway box in the same room as my inverter before I could get reliable communications between the two. Inverter to gateway communications issues have been fairly common on these fora in the past, and they're often resolved by bringing the NEO Gateway closer to the inverter. If a CAT5/6 connection is not already handy, some have even resorted to power-line wired network extenders to get an RJ-45 connector near the inverter.

Atom12 | 25 novembre 2019

My garage already had wireless for my Model 3. But it was never that great.

So now I’m doing it right. I just pulled CAT6 into the garage.

I’m mounting a small wood board on the wall about three feet away from the inverter. It will carry a multi-port switch for the wireless, NEO, TEG, and whatever the future brings.

sylroyter | 3 dicembre 2019

Atom12: If the NEO Gateway box is just a Zigbee wireless way to communicate between inverter and your network, and if you're running CAT6 and a switch right next to the inverter, why not just hard wire the inverter to the switch?

gregbrew | 4 dicembre 2019

Not all inverters have an RJ-45 socket. My ABB 4.2kW does not.

Atom12 | 4 dicembre 2019

You are right. There is an RJ-45 inside the big compartment (solaredge SE11400H-US).

Thank you.

I’m assuming the “NEO” gateway is configured to talk to Tesla.

OTOH, the on-line docs suggest the default solaredge RJ-45 communication is to “prod.solaredge.com”. It appears completely configurable though.

I will leave it alone for now. I’m still waiting on system activation.

gregbrew | 5 dicembre 2019

I would tread very lightly with any unknown interface. You could conceivably brick your inverter.

Atom12 | 5 dicembre 2019

Thanks @gregbrew. I'm going to stick with the "NEO" and not touch anything. I'm just familiarizing myself with the system.