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Thread: Solar Power

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Long Island, NY
    Posts
    199

    Smile Solar Power

    I got solar power for my house. I'm very happy with it. Just got it up on Saturday, so I don't know how low my bills will be, but even though it's been cloudy since, my meter has been running backwards all day long. Most summer months my bill should be $0 or a credit, then the winter months it should eat into that credit or be low.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    parker county, tx
    Posts
    7,923

    Default

    Congrats. I hope it goes well for you. If I could afford it, I would do it too.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Long Island, NY
    Posts
    199

    Default

    For me, it should pay for it's self in 8 to 10 years. It also gets a mindset of electrical conservation. The goal is no bill, so every little bit counts. When you are paying $125-$150 a month, what is one light more or less. Now I'm constantly watching where all the watts are going.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Laurel, MS
    Posts
    1,026

    Default

    If you don't mind saying, what did an array that size cost?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Farmington, New Mexico
    Posts
    6,282

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Sport View Post
    I got solar power for my house. I'm very happy with it. Just got it up on Saturday, so I don't know how low my bills will be, but even though it's been cloudy since, my meter has been running backwards all day long. Most summer months my bill should be $0 or a credit, then the winter months it should eat into that credit or be low.

    Details. We need details. Manufacturer, output, costs, savings, maintenance requirements, etc.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Wausau Wi
    Posts
    311

    Default

    I'm jealous. Looks great, I'd like to do that within the next couple of years. Need more details..
    Everything happens for a reason. Time heals all wounds - time and a half heals them even faster

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Sac Valley, CA
    Posts
    169

    Default

    I second the request for more details including what rebates etc. you got and the anticipated kwh output per year. Looks great, what kind of inverter did you get?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Tacoma, Washington USA
    Posts
    332

    Default I am writing on solar

    I love mine. Two panels, 128 watt, one 80 watt run my lights on all but the cloudiest days. The larger panel is in a bear fenced bee yard right behind the house. For a thief to get it they mus enter the first fence, pass the two dogs, surmount the fencer and wire and lift fifty pounds of glass off a pipe while on a ladder, all the while avoiding the two story colony next to it.

    Chrissy

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Alpharetta, GA, USA
    Posts
    521

    Default I like your set up!

    Quote Originally Posted by CSShaw View Post
    For a thief to get it they mus enter the first fence, pass the two dogs, surmount the fencer and wire and lift fifty pounds of glass off a pipe while on a ladder, all the while avoiding the two story colony next to it.

    Chrissy
    Sounds like a pretty costly solar outfit (from the potential burglar's standpoint) It's what I'd call multiple deterrents!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    lafayette, Indiana, USA
    Posts
    19

    Default

    Very Nice. I would love to do that someday.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    581

    Default Type of Solar System?

    Does your system use batteries with 12volts., 24 volts, or 48 volts? On the other hand, is your system high voltage (400 - 600 volts) with no batteries?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Long Island, NY
    Posts
    199

    Lightbulb Some details

    It's a 5 kw system and I had it professionally installed. It has 28 panels each one is 180 watts. I could have saved some money if I did the installation myself, but the installer also did a 200 amp upgrade at the same time, he did all the paperwork, and he gets the rebate, so that much isn't out of my pocket. The whole thing cost 38k before rebates and everything. It's the rebates that make a big difference. The rebate that the local power company is giving is 3.75 per watt. That makes a total rebate of nearly 19k, so I just had to pay 19k. NY gives a 5k tax credit and fed gives a 2k tax credit, so the whole thing is going to cost me 12k after I get my tax money back next year.

    The manufacturer is Evergreen Solar, located in MA. The inverter is a Sunny Boy 6000 watt, so if I wanted to add some panels at some point I wouldn't need to get a new inverter. There is no maintenance because there are no batteries. I'm not off the grid. If I did that, then I wouldn't be eligible for the rebates. During the day the meter spins backwards and at night it goes forward.

    Electricity here is very expensive. I pay about 18 cents per kWh. That's including the fuel surcharge that they tacked on a few years ago. Now they call it a distribution charge. All in all, if the utility company doesn't raise the rates, it will pay for itself in about 8 to 10 years. If they do raise their rates it will be even faster, and they always raise the rates

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Danbury, CT
    Posts
    2,863

    Default

    I was going to say it would have cost him more than that house if it were not on long island 12k is not bad....and I love the energy buyback laws....I have a friend in Vermont who was solar and wind running his house....I think that cost him close to 25k self installed.
    Last edited by bluegrass; 04-19-2007 at 01:09 PM.
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Tacoma, Washington USA
    Posts
    332

    In the mountains one dresses in layers

    So i did that with the panels, but look at these others, all up in them kilowatts and here i am with a silly five batteries, $100 controler and one of those yellow inverters. Oh well, it sure beats the candles of the first winter, but no one lined up to steal my candles.

    Chrissy

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    North Alabama, SW Kentucky
    Posts
    1,914

    Default

    So what would be the bare minimum to get started with if someone was on-grid and simply wanted to wade into the water and get a system started (focused more the "rolling back" meter type system)?
    Waya
    WayaCoyote

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Danbury, CT
    Posts
    2,863

    Default

    WAYA
    The buy back law goes state by state.....unfortunately Kentucky being as slow as it is and with all this coal power has no reason to have a buy back law I have been looking into it for two years and have yet to find any intrest in getting one. There are only a handful of states with the laws and inclued California, Colorodo, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, Mass, and two or three others that I am forgetting? Some cities also have the laws.
    Until we get a law here there is no point in buying a system....a few years after you do the law will pass and you will not qualify for all the rebates....I sit here and wait.....it will come. I am pretty sure Alabama doesn't have it yet either.
    Last edited by bluegrass; 04-22-2007 at 05:18 AM.
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Wausau Wi
    Posts
    311

    Default solar

    I just emailed them, hopefully this will get the ball rolling. Thanks Sport !!
    Everything happens for a reason. Time heals all wounds - time and a half heals them even faster

  18. #18
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Erie, PA
    Posts
    2,030

    Default

    That's awesome! I'd love to do that, except, thank you Lake Erie, it is cloudy here 90% of the time. I've been thinking about installing wind power, put PA, in their infinite wisdom, is only offering tax credits on solar, and my budget isn't quite there to finance it myself yet.
    “The keeping of bees is like the direction of sunbeams.” -Henry David Thoreau

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Danbury, CT
    Posts
    2,863

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Hobie View Post
    That's awesome! I'd love to do that, except, thank you Lake Erie, it is cloudy here 90% of the time. I've been thinking about installing wind power, put PA, in their infinite wisdom, is only offering tax credits on solar, and my budget isn't quite there to finance it myself yet.
    The income tax credits expire this year, wonder if they will be renewed?
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Raleigh, North Carolina
    Posts
    3,599

    Default

    an interesting thought about solar
    photo-electric panels are somewhere in the neighborhood of 15% efficient
    solar hot water heaters are much higher, I think as high as 80%
    I heat my house with hot water and have been thinking a solar water array makes sense
    of course it does no good in summer (other than shade the roof)
    it all depends on what you want to get out of it, electric power or heat, but it's something to think about

    Dave

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