Solar Power

Discussion in 'The Bench' started by Briz, Mar 2, 2017.

  1. DBS

    DBS Well-Known Member

    Does the system store energy for use @ night? Maybe overly paranoid, but I was thinking about it more so for the doomsday scenario if the grid went down than being green although at least still some benefits there (maybe) and not totally throwing $ away even if not the best investment and I'm assuming no need for a generator even for a temporary power outage. The grid going down may or may not be a real possibility (?) and if it did, not having electricity may be among the least of the problems, but...
  2. Briz

    Briz Platinum Level Contributor

    They said the battery technology is just not there for this to be a reasonable cost efficient option. They could offer me a 10Kw battery system and the switch gear to make it work but we would be limited on what would and would not run in the home. I'm pretty sure I can come up with something as good if not better for less than the 10 grand asking price. The rep advised to keep my back up generators on hand for the times when the power is down for extended periods. We recently bought a 16000Kw generator that will be powered by the PTO on our tractor. @ 1800 rpm(540 pto speed) it will run at 1/2 gal an hour.
  3. Briz

    Briz Platinum Level Contributor

    Id be more worried about thieves trying to steal the equipment off the house or worse and having lights on at night would be a sure beacon to dishonest people out there.
  4. Joe B

    Joe B Well-Known Member

    I was under the impression that, even with some kind of power storage system, you use what you produce during the day and run off of the grid at night. Doing this still produces an excess that the power company repays you for and provides power on those days when you are producing minimal power of your own (rainy days, foggy days, etc). I would think that not having a means of storage would be considerably cheaper than buying a technology that is not quite up to snuff yet.
  5. DBS

    DBS Well-Known Member

    I don't know anything about it, but I thought Tesla just came out with batteries for doing exactly this. If the energy storage code could be cracked, there would practically be no need for a generator and one could nearly run off the grid in perpetuity if need be. IIRC, there's a solar wrap developed or being developed intended to wrap an electric vehicle, but it all comes down to something revolutionary on the storage side vs. the incremental improvements on the current technology. Just think how many Buicks one could buy if they figured out a new technology:). I remember when RAM was $40/Mb and inkjet printers were $500, so it'll happen sooner or later.
  6. Briz

    Briz Platinum Level Contributor

    Im looking into refurbishing old fork lift batteries. I can get them cheap and they have a lot of capacity. Recently installed a A/C system for a house that was "Off Grid" and the biggest concern was starting draw on anything electrical.

    I think you are exactly right. Also believe its not far off.
    DBS likes this.
  7. PatricksBuick

    PatricksBuick PatrickBuick

    when it comes to profitability it would be good to know whether you can do net-metering (big issue in many countries).
    Florida should have enough irradiation that repay periods should be well below 10 yrs. now. Can you buy PV systems and plug them into your system or do you need somone else install them?
  8. Briz

    Briz Platinum Level Contributor

    I now have a install date for the 29th of Nov through the 1st of Dec. !

    Patrick, I believe this is not to big of a job but requires state license and permits to do the work. I've really been thinking about starting a solar company myself. I'll be watching very closely and asking lots of questions while the crew is doing its thing. Later after its all done and running I will purchase more panels myself and add to the system. I've got no shortage of roof top or sunshine.Will post pics of the progress when it gets going
    DBS and 300sbb_overkill like this.
  9. PatricksBuick

    PatricksBuick PatrickBuick

    In some European countries they have now approved systems, consisting of 1-3 modules, inverter and a common electric plug that you can plug into your household socket, like any other household appliance. So no need for electrical engineering capabilities and your capex come down further ;-)
    I wouldn't be surprised if these kinda systems were available in the US as well.
    photovoltaic will stir up the energy world big time.
  10. Briz

    Briz Platinum Level Contributor

    Got a call this morning asking if it was ok if the crew started today instead of Wednesday. I'm like sure thing no problem. They showed up around 2 and got right to laying it out. I'll get pics of the progress tomorrow.
    300sbb_overkill likes this.
  11. Briz

    Briz Platinum Level Contributor

    Here is where we're at today. There's 4 pallets of panels on the trailer . 25 units each. 2 of them are mine. KIMG0291[1].JPG KIMG0293[1].JPG KIMG0294[1].JPG
    Buicksky likes this.
  12. JZRIV

    JZRIV S.W. PA - Farm Country

    Looks like you need to get out the chainsaw next and eliminate that shade!
    May the Force be With You!
    Thanks for updates
  13. jake csordas

    jake csordas Well-Known Member

    Good luck with the system. Love mine. Best investment yet.
  14. Briz

    Briz Platinum Level Contributor

    You are correct but with my luck they would fall on the building. Got a buddy with heavy equipment thats helped me clear other areas. I'll have to wait until he has time to push them over.
  15. Jim Weise

    Jim Weise GOT AIR?

    I like the idea Briz, and it seems in your case that it makes financial sense. A few things occur to me, that I wonder if you factored into your costs.

    Forgive me if these questions have been answered, I just skimmed the thread.

    Insurance- I assume that your going to have to put a rider on your Homeowner's insurance to cover the panels. Have you looking into the costs associated with insuring the system....Or is there some type of insurance provided by the Solar company, since your buying this system on time, and they will own part of it for a quite a while, and have their own investment to protect. Living in your part of the world, this is a real concern I would suspect.

    Maintenance.. Such as bird droppings... who keeps the panels clean?.. your responsibility? I don't know about you, but the last thing I want to do at 50+ years old is scramble around a 12/12 pitch roof, with a bottle of windex and a roll of paper towels.

    The office of the local power company has a ground level solar array next to their building, in a big fenced in area.. probably 100+ panels. Sitting on a pole outside the fence, is this huge carving of an Eagle, fully painted and so lifelike, I did a "double take" first time I saw it. The Eagle keeps the birds away.. as in this part of of the world, it's their only real predator.

    Is there a repair/replacement policy that covers the panels, for at least as long as the loan terms? This would be for non storm damage failures. How about for the ground/below ground infrastructure?

    I agree with Jim, I would like to see a house in person with those Tesla roof shingle solar panels. Pictures can be deceiving, but the ones they show look very nice.

    I do know for sure, the very first thing I would do for a panel array, is put a steel roofing system under the area that will hold the panels. As was mentioned, R&R of the panels in 15-20 years will really add to the cost of a replacement asphalt roof system.

  16. John Codman

    John Codman Platinum Level Contributor

    When I kept my airplane in Mansfield, MA there was a big problem with Swallows. They would build nests on the engines, sh-t all over everything, and were generally a PIA. One guy got a fake, but very realistic Owl and put it on the tail of his airplane. A few days later I noticed a Swallow sitting on it's head.
  17. Brad Conley

    Brad Conley Super Moderator Staff Member

    JW, the homeowners insurance policy will cover the damage to a solar panel. A person should advise their agent they have installed panels and the agent should then do a Replacement Cost Estimator to re-figure the replacement cost of the building upon the panels are attached, if the dwelling it would be Coverage A. If the panels are not attached to a building, then they are considered Other Structures (coverage B on your policy) and there should be an endorsement added to the insurance policy to cover their replacement cost.
  18. Jim Weise

    Jim Weise GOT AIR?

    Thanks for the input Brad.. same in all states and all insurance companies?
  19. Brad Conley

    Brad Conley Super Moderator Staff Member

    Should be, but everyone should call their agent to check . All the companies I represent (10 or so) are this way.
  20. Briz

    Briz Platinum Level Contributor

    Ok! The system is installed and waiting on a final from the building dept. After that the power company will switch the meter and then I go hot. Funny how in the last week I keep looking at these nice sunny days in a different light. Its like $$$'s floating down for heaven . I did call the ins company and inform them. I was told as long as they are attached to the house its covered. No additional premium. At the last minute it was decided to put the bulk of the panels on the 12x12 pitched part of the garage over the asphalt shingle roof. I mentioned to the installers my concerns about replacing the roof in 10- 20 years and they brought up a valid point, The panels nearly totally cover the roof so in effect its like a new roof over the old one. I probably wont still be here in 20 - 30 years and will let the next owners deal with that problem. Cleaning should not be a problem if needed. I was told theres some sort of compound in the material like teflon that makes noting stick to them and the rain will simply wash everything off. The installing company will maintain the panel and inverter for 20 years if any problems arise.
    After watching this go together over the last 3 days I see no reason why I could not do this on the other side of the building. Its all pretty much plug and play. everything is modular and bolt together. In a few years after I see how this pays out I'll do the other side of the same building myself.
    Due to lighting I took all these roof top pics early in the morning around 8 am. Thats why you see so much shading on the panels. KIMG0294[1].JPG KIMG0300[1].JPG KIMG0301[1].JPG KIMG0302[1].JPG KIMG0303[1].JPG KIMG0304[1].JPG KIMG0307[1].JPG KIMG0309[1].JPG
    300sbb_overkill likes this.

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