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I think we're going solar

Discussion in 'Environmental Discussion' started by jerrymildred, Feb 5, 2021.

  1. John321

    John321 Senior Member

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  2. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    One year after installation, it looks like 20 panels will be enough even if we do get a full on EV and it's not quite as efficient as the Prime.

    Last year:
    Screen Shot 2022-04-23 at 8.58.12 AM Large.jpeg

    This year so far:
    Screen Shot 2022-04-23 at 8.58.40 AM Large.jpeg



    Our total production so far, is 10.2 MWh and our total net export since installation is 2.8 MWh.
     
  3. Montgomery

    Montgomery Senior Member

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    I know this isn't the perfect place to bring this up, but I just have to say, if one can afford to go solar, one should do it. It's even a better investment when you include backup energy storage. We recently did this for our home. My roof needed to be replaced, so we decided to go with Tesla's solar roof system (not solar panels, but an entire solar roof!). Here is a site for information:

    https://www.cnet.com/home/energy-and-utilities/solar-panels-versus-tesla-solar-roof/

    New roof covered for 25 years. Shingles covered for 25 years. Payments are for 10 years. We have been on this system for 4 months now. We generate enough electricity to power my house all day! (including running the AC!). We generate so much electricity from the sun, that we actually fill up our storage batteries by 12 noon everyday and send the extra back to Edison all afternoon!

    I never conceived how much free energy the sun is giving us till I got this system!
     
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  4. Zythryn

    Zythryn Senior Member

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    The best fusion powerplant is the one 93 Million miles away (y)
     
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  5. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    We were getting close to needing new shingles, so we did that as part of the project. I would have liked batteries so we could maintain power during outages, but that's a lot of extra money. And in the almost 7-1/2 years we've been in this house, we've only had a few blips. Nothing longer than a few minutes.
     
  6. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The OTHER One Percenter.....

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    While friend @jerrymildred is always happy to share his thread, this would be a GREAT thing to discuss as its own topic.

    FOR RIGHT NOW, “traditional” solar panels are cheaper than a solar roof, even when you throw in the benefit of replacing the roof. Bolt-on panels are also scalable and they actually protect the roof that they’re not replacing.
    In like manner, battery power backups are not even CLOSE.
    My backup system was < $1000 and will last for days on propane or gasoline.
    Propane is the nominal source since it is storable in its own storm-proof container, and nearly eliminates generator maintenance.

    I live deep in hurricane country and my total power outages over the last 30 years amount to something like 2 weeks in total with six days (Katrina) being the longest.
    Local power is extraordinarily robust.
    We’ve lost major appliances to lightning but it generally takes a hurricane sized storm to produce a disruption in electrical power lasting longer than 0.25 seconds, and capacitors and dry-cells are usually sufficient to keep from resetting clocks.

    Just guessing here….but neither grid-tie systems nor solar roof systems are immune from lightning (NOTHING is,) and the SE gets orders of magnitude more “free distributed energy” from that source.
    A lightning strike will (might?) not hurt the panels much, and the tempered glass solar roof will (might?) probably stand up to a 130MPH pine cone, but I like the ability to unbolt and store the panels for a cat 4-5 storm, replacing them after the storm passes..

    One can replace any of the pieces of each system as they wear out, get zorched by lightning, or shattered by flying 2x4s…..but 25 years is a loooong time in renewable-energy years.
    They will probably start building houses with more solar roofs than metal or shingle roofs eventually, but until then I’m thinking that more product development and first-order engineering cost recovery will be needed before this roofing system becomes standard.
     
    #226 ETC(SS), Apr 24, 2022
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2022
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  7. John321

    John321 Senior Member

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  8. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The OTHER One Percenter.....

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    Absenting $/Kwh…..this is another CES napkin drawing seeking investment money.

    I like the out of the box (non-standard!) voltage distribution but we will need more real-world data to see how they stand up to WX.
    Still……This is the kind of innovation that a non-politicized, poison pill free energy infrastructure bill might ACTUALLY incentivize.
     
  9. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    [I would not re-do my exact system, today better systems exist. Also I exist in a area where my utility does not buy excess solar power I might make, called Net Metering.]

    If you just want to reduce your power bill and cannot do Net Metering, try to only buy enough panels to match your average daytime load. (and inverter(s))
    If you are allowed Net Metering, you might want to buy enough panels for your average daily load

    If you want to have short term power backup, size your battery to have startup power to start all your electric motors. (A/C, pumps, Refrigerators, shop tools, etc) It is usually much harder to start motors than run them. Peak wattage is almost always your limit.

    If you need days of off grid backup, plan your system to include a backup generator that only runs to recharge your battery. This can use much less fuel than one that runs the entire power failure and the generator can be sized for average loads, not peak loads.
     
  10. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    There's a bill going through the FL legislature now that will most likely kill rooftop solar power in the Sunshine State if it passes and gets signed.
    2022 Bill Summaries - The Florida Senate
    The brunt of it is:
    The last paragraph seems to grandfather me in but I still really don't like it and have written to several representatives about it. If I had the money, just for spite, I'd get a full battery backup and not let them buy any of my electricity at 3 cents/kWh and sell it to my neighbors at 14 cents. Or as close to that as I can get what with generating more than I can use.
     
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  11. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The OTHER One Percenter.....

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    Rooftop solar makes sense even without net metering and I sort of understand the case for less than retail compensation if you view it from the standpoint of the utility.
    They have to provide each and every customer 24x7 electricity and accept all of the last-mile expenses. Solar producers demand 24x7 availability and only dump their excess power into the distribution infrastructure provided and maintained by the utility.
    If wealthy consumers, already getting federal tax kickbacks for the install costs, and probably placing the most demand on the system receive compensation for their excess production then that leaves folks in shallower economic depth bands to make up the difference.

    Of course....it's more complicated than this, since big power is...big business and not the traditional co-ops that we grew up with.
    When utilities are publicly traded, kill dozens of humans while on probation for killing other humans and a total number of ZERO cooperate ossifers get to do a perp-walk for those crimes AND rate payers get to fund the compensation for the victims.....I sorta lose all sympathy for the utilities - ALL of which are state regulated.

    Just remember, the sun don't always shine and the wind doesn't always blow. ;)

    I like the retail/wholesale model, and I REALLY like some of the work that some people are doing in using vast numbers of plugged-in cars, and power walls as a 'mesh' system of both load and source...faaaaaaaaaaar off in a distant future.

    You will want to be careful about that.
    VERY careful!
    Utilities tend to be regulated, and thus you will want to factor in money for palm lubrication and beak dipping and overcoming cooperate inertia.
    As we've seen with other ultra-large corps in your state, big biz wants to STAY big.....and big government wants to STAY big....... ;)
     
    #231 ETC(SS), Apr 25, 2022
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2022
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  12. Montgomery

    Montgomery Senior Member

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    Similar bill was flying around Sacramento but got squashed. Power companies not happy that we are getting energy elsewhere.
     
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  13. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    I completely understand it. But zero compensation is theft.

    Still, there's almost no chance I'd convert to battery backup since it would be insanely expensive. I was just venting.

    I'm fine with the electricity sloshing back and forth as the sunshine comes and goes. I loan them power and they give some of it back. I don't mind paying the $30/month to make that happen. They do have maintenance expenses. In fact, I could even live with them taking the annual excess if they wanted to. I wouldn't insist on them paying anything for the annual excess, so the 3 cents/kWh they pay is nice. But if I have to give them for free what I make that I don't use in the daytime so they can sell it and then buy what I need at night at retail, that's insane. And that's what this bill seems to do.
     
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  14. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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  15. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

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    Mm hmm. Has always frosted me when I hear utility lobbyists saying they have to diddle the per-kWh rates because "oh, but we have maintenance expenses" as if there isn't already the fixed monthly part of their bill for that.
     
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  16. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The OTHER One Percenter.....

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    OH….I concur that there should be some compensation. I like the retail/wholesale model, but I don’t have lobbyists….lawyers….etc…etc…
    My point is that even without net metering, solar makes all the sense in the world - which is why power companies are starting to accept government kick-backs to plant fields of glass in some communities.

    We do battery backup with diesel GENSETS in big Bell, which means that we ALREADY have all of the expensive stuff for a complete off-grid system except for the panels.
    I wrote a paper once that pretty much stated that if you put solar panels on all of our central offices that they would completely pay for themselves JUST BY reducing the thermal loading on the building and channeling most of the rainwater away from our mostly flat, mostly black roofs.
    Since every CO is already equipped with very large battery banks, inverters, controllers etc…net metering isn’t very much of a consideration for whether or not solar would be a good thing to do..

    Buuuuuuut….I don’t have a brother in law (or a large political contributor) who sells solar panels…… :unsure:

    We will know that SOLAR has completely arrived when dot.gov starts to tax you for the panels. :ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:
     
    #236 ETC(SS), Apr 26, 2022
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2022
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  17. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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  18. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web BMW i3 and Model 3

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    Did your state representative and senator vote for it? Their names are?

    Bob Wilson
     
  19. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    I still need to check on that. It passed both houses by disturbingly large margins.
     
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  20. jerrymildred

    jerrymildred Senior Member

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    I checked. Whether they were bought or bamboozled, they both lost my vote next time. :mad:
     
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