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Solar Panels

Psittac
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Not sure where this belongs, please move if needed.

 

I've been pondering getting solar on my home but want to be educated on the subject so I know if I'm going with the right company.  I know Linus did an episode on his panels but didn't really go into detail about what you should look for.  I don't have any need for heated water and I'm looking for the best bang for the buck.

 

Are there any reliable guides videos or resources anyone knows of?  Every time I try to search I'm overwhelmed by people just throwing out a sales pitch

 

So far all I know is that the inverters can quickly eat up your saving's when they need to be replaced rather frequently and maybe the micro inverter is the way to go?

 

If I just got a 9kwh system from Tesla I think that's $15k without a wall after rebates etc, but I've heard that getting an install is way down the road if at all.

 

So any thoughts on the subject are appreciated.

 

*I should add that I'm in the USA

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There's about a million questions here.

 

What does your average electric use look like per month?

 

How much does your utility charge you for electricity? (Not just the wholesale rate, I mean how much they charge all-in. Dollars per bill divided by kilowatt-hours used.)

 

Have you already done home energy efficiency upgrades, like insulation and weather sealing? They'll pay for themselves in reduced energy consumption. (Maybe even sooner than the solar panels would pay for themselves, depending on your usage.)

 

What kind of HVAC do you have? Resistive electric? Oil-fired hot water baseboard? A heat pump is more energy-efficient than most other systems (natural gas on extremely cold days being the exception, then they're about tied).

 

Who owns the panels with the kind of system you're exploring, you or the company installing it?

 

Have you checked your house with a tool like Google Sunroof to get a rough estimate of what size installation you'll need?

https://sunroof.withgoogle.com/

 

I think attacking the consumption side first makes more sense most of the time. I air sealed my attic, bulked the insulation up to R60, and insulated and air sealed the basement rim joist with 2" XPS foam and Rockwool to get it from R0 to R30. I also replaced my resistive electric baseboards with a Mitsubishi H2i ductless mini-split heat pump. Before I kept the place at 64 in the winter and didn't heat a couple spare rooms, and my electric bills were still over $200/mo. These efficiency improvements cut that by more than half, including keeping the entire place at 68. (If I was heating that much with the old baseboards, my bill would have been over $300/mo easily.)

Dell owns my soul.

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4 hours ago, Psittac said:

If I just got a 9kwh system from Tesla I think that's $15k without a wall after rebates etc, but I've heard that getting an install is way down the road if at all.

Could be wrong, haven't looked into Tesla Solar for a while...but unless you plan on getting a new roof done, wanted a powerwall or care about the esthetics then going panels would be better/cheaper.

 

iirc Tesla Solar doesn't use microinverters as well, so inconsistent shadows can affect the energy output.  If you were needing to have your roof redone though (like new times), then yea I could see how it could be worth it since you could reduce the price of the new roof from the actual solar cost.

 

From what I've read, micro inverters are nice in that they give you more energy output per panel than a single inverter because I believe having even 1 panel shaded with a full inverter can greatly affect the performance.

 

Take what I am saying here with a grain of salt though.

3735928559 - Beware of the dead beef

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-> Moved to Off Topic

 

Sorry, but General Discussion limit on home improvements is with home automation, IoT, AI and stuff with direct connection to information technology. Solar panels, wind turbines and stuff like that are mostly not within that subject line (while the added monitoring software may be).

^^^^ That's my post ^^^^
<-- This is me --- That's your scrollbar -->
vvvv Who's there? vvvv

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