Author Topic: Going Solar  (Read 4568 times)

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Offline Billzbub

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Re: Going Solar
« Reply #75 on: November 29, 2018, 03:56:39 PM »
Thanks guys for the discussion.  I agree with you and told the saleswoman that I'd have to wait a few years.

After crunching the numbers, I pay an average of $97 per month in electricity alone.  The 29 solar panels she quoted me were based on my electricity usage over the last 2 years and are meant to give me just enough KWh credits to cover that usage 100%.  If the panels generate more, then I start building a bank of KWh credits that I can't change into money or into credit for the gas portion of my bill (which is actually significant after all).

At this point, I'm definitely not taking out a 12 year loan with $137 monthly payments just to take $97 off my power bill just so I don't have to pay for electricity starting in 12 years.  The sales lady was telling me to look at it over 20 years and it would make sense, but I need that money now for my kids in college.  I will look at it again in 3 years or so.  Maybe the prices of solar panels will come down and the price of electricity will go up so that it makes better sense.
Quote from: Steven Novella
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Offline Alex Simmons

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Re: Going Solar
« Reply #76 on: November 29, 2018, 10:43:25 PM »
I think that is a wise choice.

I'm still amazed at how much more expensive a solar PV system is over there though.

Offline Alex Simmons

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Re: Going Solar
« Reply #77 on: December 04, 2018, 10:23:49 PM »
So while the system I installed has been going for nearly 6 weeks, the "official" start date is somewhat later as that begins when the energy retailer upgraded the meter box with smart meters (for main circuits and also one for the off-peak hot water circuit).

So in the first 15 days since then my electricity costs have dropped from $13.58/day to $2.97/day.

Keep in mind $1.73 of that is a flat daily fee for being connected to the grid.

Offline Billzbub

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Re: Going Solar
« Reply #78 on: December 05, 2018, 03:37:03 PM »
If you had one more solar panel, would you be selling back enough electricity to have a zero bill, or would that fee still be charged to you and you'd just be building credits for a rainy day?
Quote from: Steven Novella
gleefully altering one’s beliefs to accommodate new information should be a badge of honor

Offline Alex Simmons

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Re: Going Solar
« Reply #79 on: December 05, 2018, 11:38:13 PM »
If you had one more solar panel, would you be selling back enough electricity to have a zero bill, or would that fee still be charged to you and you'd just be building credits for a rainy day?

Well I can go bigger but my export power output is limited to 9kW, so once my system starts putting out 9kW more than I am using, it automatically caps the export. I have 11kW of panels with a 10kW inverter. At present it's rare to have export capped as during peak production times I'll have pool pump going + other house stuff.

Occasionally I do hit the limit of my inverter 10kW.

It's typical to oversize panels by 133% of the inverter size but spending another $1.5 - $2k to have another 8 panels seemed overkill.

It's also a function of roof space and azimuth alignment of panels - you need to be careful how the panels strings are set up. I already have 40 panels on the roof.

Offline Alex Simmons

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Re: Going Solar
« Reply #80 on: March 12, 2019, 07:24:08 PM »
Bit of an update.

I've plotted a cumulative daily total of what my bill would have been without our solar PV system, what we actually pay, and also what we could have been paying if we were on a different electricity plan, being Time Of Use (TOU) charging.

The start date is set to the day the energy retailer's smart meter was commissioned (even though we had the system in operation for 24 days up to that point, and this was worth $330 of savings on our bill).



For the time period in the chart (113 days), the savings so far are $1,222, an average of $10.81/day.

The additional saving we might have achieved on a TOU plan is $190, an average of $1.68/day.

If I add the $330 of savings made during the 24 days before the retailer's smart meter was commissioned, so far our savings have been $1,552 over 137 days, an average of $11.33/day.

Keep in mind this period is Summer here. As we move into Autumn the daily saving will drop a little, but so will our bills. Mainly because of the reduction in use of air conditioning, which is our single biggest component of our energy demand.

Offline daniel1948

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Re: Going Solar
« Reply #81 on: March 12, 2019, 09:19:37 PM »
I will be having solar put on my new house and the cottage as soon as the installer can get the necessary permit from the electric utility. The utility will not buy my excess electricity because it is fully subscribed. With electric rates of $36 cents per kWh, solar is popular here. I'll get two PowerWalls for the house and one for the cottage to go along with the PV panels. I don't care about the ROI or the cost comparison. I just want to have solar. (I already have solar hot water, on both the house and the cottage.) My renter (in the cottage) is happy because her electric bill will disappear. And her puppy will be happy because he's a happy puppy. (I just had to throw that in.)
Daniel
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"Anyone who has ever looked into the glazed eyes of a soldier dying on the battlefield will think long and hard before starting a war."
-- Otto von Bismarck