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Getting solar panels in a couple months.....

Post in 'The Green Room' started by geek, Jul 26, 2008.

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  1. geek

    geek Minister of Fire

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    36 panels for a total of about 6,120 kw/year.....this should cover around 95% of my electricity needs.

    I was thinking about hot water needs, currently hot water comes from the oil boiler (I have baseboard heat).

    I never had an electric hot water, all hot water need in my home comes directly from the boiler.

    Should I consider an electric hot water tank because I'll get the solar panels? what about tank-less?

    We have 3 children, their age is 14, 7 and 5. Wife always use cold water for laundry needs.
    1,850 sq. ft. 2-story colonial built in 2001.

    This coming winter I will be counting on my 25-pdv for my heating needs for the whole house...."knock on wood"....

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  2. hoverfly

    hoverfly Minister of Fire

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    I take you are going to be crediting to the grid from surplus and taking off grid when needed? There for a electric tank less instant recovery would work as such units use 100 amps when in use, just make sure you electrical system can handle it, it should since your house was built in 01. I don't think it would work if you run off batteries. Other options, hw panels for domestic only or even heat, you still need another source for at least hw like a tank or tank less. However with three children I would consider a gas/electric tank less instant recovery, or quick recovery hw tank maybe in conjunction with a hw solar panel.
  3. Wet1

    Wet1 Minister of Fire

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    I don't know. If this new solar system will only cover 95% of your current needs, adding an electric water heater will not really save you anything since your solar system doesn't have the capacity to power it. I guess what I'm saying is you should almost take the solar system out of the decision process. Would you add an electric hot water heater if the solar system wasn't ever in the picture?

    BTW, if you don't mind me asking... What's the solar system going to cost? How much of the cost is the state going to rebate?
  4. kinsmanstoves

    kinsmanstoves Minister of Fire

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    Where are you getting the system from? Do yuo have a link? Please let me know, I am interested in solor for the house and the stores.

    Thanks
    Eric
    eric@kinsmanstoves.com
    330-876-0200
  5. billb3

    billb3 Minister of Fire

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    I've heard of some off-grid systems using electric heating elements to heat water to bleed off the unused power, but if you're sending the excess backwards into the grid that would be unnecessary. Might be a better use for the excess though if you're selling that excess dirt cheap to the POWCO. Would make for an interesting power distributor.

    Kinda surprised you didn't go with solar hot water first. The payback is supposed to be sooner so many start there in the NE rather than PVpanels.
  6. flamegrabber

    flamegrabber Member

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    Good for you.

    Adding solar power is HUGE money.

    Something like $10.00 per watt I think.

    4kw = $40,000.00.

    But it'll be nice to have for sure.

    As close to energy independence as one can get.

    Don't forget to check for Federal rebates, etc., at tax time.

    FG.


  7. geek

    geek Minister of Fire

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    will be a pv system, no batteries and the system will be sending the excess backwards into the grid (meter will run backwards)

    the whole system was quoted for around $46k, the state of CT is giving me around $25k so my portion is $21k minus $2k I'll be getting from the federal on next year's tax return (total cost about $19k). I'm going with a company based in CA that serves (authorized) NJ, NY and CT, their name is Akeena, very professional people.

    I thought that by installing an electric hot water tank and program it to run during solar peak hours in the day would be a good idea because the energy needed is being produced by the solar system, not sure how much $ extra or extra watts this tanks need, thinking about energy star tank (or tank-less ?)

    what's a electric quick recovery?, I mean is this what they call these tanks? Planning to go to sears and check them out....
  8. hoverfly

    hoverfly Minister of Fire

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    Oooooops sorry, quick recovery is a tank that use 5500 watt elements, the tank less are INSTANT hw heaters either electric or gas. I made changes to my post above as well.
  9. geek

    geek Minister of Fire

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  10. myee001

    myee001 New Member

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    You might want to install Solar Hot Water System if you want to save on your hot water bill. There's tax rebate on this too. This will come with a Hot Water tank that can be fed to your boiler so that the boiler will turn on less to heat your hot water. If you're going to spend that much for the solar, you might also want to add a battery backup system to power your critical appliances, lights, etc.. in case of any power outages. It's better than using or installing a generator.
  11. savageactor7

    savageactor7 Minister of Fire

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    WOW! that's a lot of coin to shell out...you'd think with the spike in energy prices everybody and their brother would be manufacturing solar panels and make them more affordable. When they came to your house for an estimate was it mentioned how soon they paid for themselves?
  12. karl

    karl Minister of Fire

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    Flamegrabber. Google MIT and solar. They just figured out a simple way to increase the output of solor cells 10 fold. The inventors are starting a business to build them. It's a really simple way they did it. Infact, everybody has been trying to do it for years and couldn't get it to work.

    I priced current cells at $4.00 a watt. That's cells only, no convertor or anything, so your $10.00 a watt might be right for the average house. If we go to .40 cents a watt on cells like they say they can do. Then I'm in.
  13. dsnedegar3

    dsnedegar3 Member

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    Just curious -- I live in Connecticut too. What is your payback on the $20K you will invest? I live in Guilford and have seen homes putting up solar panels the last few months with the price of oil/electricity.
  14. flamegrabber

    flamegrabber Member

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    Yeah the $10.00/watt includes the whole works. Batteries, install, everything.

    I live in Mass and the state currently has a $65 million rebate fund for people who add/convert to solar.

    It'd be alot of work for an existing house but if I wsa building a new house I'd add it and after all rebates, etc., I'd bury my cost in the mortgage.

    I'd jump in at $2.00/watt now but that's a long ways off.

    $10000.00 for 5kw. Not bad IMO.

    FG.


  15. geek

    geek Minister of Fire

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    this is a section from the quote of the paperwork:

    System Benefits
    The system will generate approximately 6,458 kWh annually at your location.
    • This will reduce your annual utility electric expense by approximately 95.8%
    • Your investment in the PV system reaches an economic breakeven point in 7.2 years.
    • The savings yield a pre-tax Rate of Return of 14% for the design life of the system.
    • Your 1st-year savings in utility electric expense will be $1,227
    • The appraised value of your property will increase by approximately $24,540 as a result
    of your investment in a PV system.
  16. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    With all rebates and tax incentives total outlay = $19000
    payback in 7.2 years.

    Do you really spend $2638 per year in electricity?? Or am I missing something?
  17. Wet1

    Wet1 Minister of Fire

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    I was thinking the same thing when I read this last night... Especially when they state the first year savings is $1200.

    I wonder how they come up with 7.2 years?
  18. offroadaudio

    offroadaudio New Member

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    Just playing devil's advocate to stimulate some thought here. This may well be a great way to go, but.....


    -
  19. geek

    geek Minister of Fire

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    good point but not sure on how they calculate the 'break even point', I sent them an email for clarification and see what they say.

    I think they may take in consideration they increase in electricity cost for the next few years and add that to the ecuation....even though I know it doesn't make sense for $19k dollars......let's see what the rep says....
  20. geek

    geek Minister of Fire

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    they enter all variables into a a computer based on site survey and the numbers given are guaranteed according to the rep, it is not an assumption.
  21. geek

    geek Minister of Fire

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    pinged the sales rep and here's the explanation:

    "The Economic breakeven point is a financial calculation whereby the cumulative cash flow savings and your investment adjusted for the utility bill savings comes together. I think the more important calculation is scenario A in your proposal which is how long does the system take to pay for itself and that is 11.2 years. This accumulates your annual savings (with an inflation adjustment of 7% annually) and accounts how long it will take to get your out of pocket cash back from utility savings! "

    I guess it makes more sense now.....
  22. Nofossil

    Nofossil Moderator Emeritus

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    To your original question, I'd consider direct solar heating for your DHW. Much more efficient and far less expensive per BTU from what I've seen.
  23. Sting

    Sting Feeling the Heat

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    First year savings of 1227 is about 100 a month

    if you finance the 19K investment - debt retirement is about 400 a month for 5 years

    ??????

    How are you saving on this?
  24. geek

    geek Minister of Fire

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    this is not ONLY the money factor, of course this factor is extremely important, however I'm trying to be as eco friendly as I can be, being "green" doesn't necessary mean saving but in the contrary is represents spending more sometimes.
  25. geek

    geek Minister of Fire

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    I have an old corolla 94 car with 240k miles on it, before I jumped on this solar deal I was thinking instead of getting a Civic hybrid car, even though my corolla is driving nice and has NO problems, so I said to myself that I'd get solar and think that I'm paying a new car for the next 4/5 years.....
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