Goomy December in The Chicago Area

Well my monthly data shows that we have had very little sun in the Chicago area this December. Just look at the battery levels:

And now the lumens:

Contact support (link in top right of this page) and have them upgrade Firmware on ST-00006682 from v156 to whatever the latest version is. . .then consider purchasing a Power Booster Accessory (PBA) if you don’t already have one.

Note 1: The Tempest device needs to have…at least. . .Firmware v165 or higher on it in order for it to effectively communicate with the Power Booster electronics.

Note 2: The PBA is unfortunately out of stock right now. . .but they expect a new batch to arrive mid-January. Please check back then for availability.

Power Booster Accessory – WeatherFlow.

I have the same issues here in Bellevue, Nebraska. SO. . .every few days. . .I place both of my Tempest devices on the PBA to “juice” them up until the next somewhat sunny (partly sunny) day ocurrs.

I would say this is normal. I had this Tempest from the kickstarter since June of 2020 never had any issues with power. Tempest in operation for 871d 11h 41m 42s as of a few seconds ago. We have just had a lot of cloud cover with the low pressure that sat over the middle the USA in the last two weeks. A very unusually rainy December with the Gulf of Mexico moist air coming up here. I am just going to ride this out to see if there are any sunny days coming.

Not only do I have to contend with overcast (OVC) conditions for days-on-end. . .I have to also contend with toooo much shade from trees. I was also a “Power Booster Field Tester” and was so excited to get to use that prototype device. . .which I Still use. . .along with a production version. Lots of clouds and lots of tree shade can make for an unhappy Tempest device at times!

There has been quite a few Low Pressure systems so far since late Fall. Normally. . .the lows with ride with the upper-level flow. . .move thru and be gone in a couple of days. But the stubborn / startionary “Barotropic” (Occluded) Lows. . .that sit and spin. . .or even retrograde back to the west (instead of lifting out to the east or northeast) have presented lots of “cloudy issues.”

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I would love to get as much sun as you did. I’m in the Pacific North West and my typical Winter is just a downward slope. The only thing that gets me thru the winters is the battery booster.

It might be more depressing that I compare actual solar radiation to calculated solar radiation (i.e. no clouds)

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Amen to that. Both of my ST devices are on the proto Power Boosters right now. For the first few days of this New Year . . . I might be able to get away with turning the switch OFF on the extension cord reel. . .but keep the Tempests mounted on the Power Boosters (just not have them activated). Then by weeks end. . .I’ll merely flip the switch back ON to the extension cord reel and the Tempests will slowly start to trickle back up in battery power because there will be 4-day spread of cloudiness expected for a large portion of the “Midlands.”. . .per the Tempest AI Forecast with 100% Guaranteed Accuracy.

PNW here too, and I’m gonna have to buy the booster and go up on a ladder again.

It’s a bit annoying that the cells do nothing except in perfect, high, direct sunlight. We had one sunny day last weekend and it didn’t charge until the sun was well off the horizon, then stopped the second a tiny wisp of cloud got in front of it. The whole day it only got to 2.46 volts. There can be thin clouds, 8,000 lux, I’m wearing sunglasses and my weather station is losing battery. Are these the least efficient panels man has ever created?

They are actually quite efficient panels. Remember there is also charge controller circuitry, battery, and the consumption side of things which can go wrong.


I have cleaned mine a few times while I am cleaning the LUX sensor since birds play target practice with it and I don’t have the bird spikes. I just use a baby wipe to clean everything off and that seems to help.

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Also in PNW. Just installed my Tempest on the 25th. Battery has been on a downward slope ever since, and now runs in low power mode and bumps along at 2.35V. I am going to have to get the booster pack as soon as it is available again.