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Re: Net metering

singlefin
July 09, 2017 07:17PM

Registered: 4 years ago
Posts: 663

fdr:
Who would you suggest to use on STX? I'm looking for someone up on the current equipment. Who would you say is a good, residential solar system designer?

Re: Net metering

vicanuck
July 10, 2017 08:23AM

Registered: 8 years ago
Posts: 2,285

Quote
singlefin
fdr:
Who would you suggest to use on STX? I'm looking for someone up on the current equipment. Who would you say is a good, residential solar system designer?

Mike Bruno of Electricity Wise Solutions.

[www.ewsvi.com]

He installed my 7.5kw system of 30 panels. We were extremely happy with everything and would highly recommend him.

Re: Net metering

vicanuck
July 10, 2017 08:27AM

Registered: 8 years ago
Posts: 2,285

Quote
Beeski
ROI for net metering was under 3 years when I did it 4 years ago.
As battery technology improves / gets cheaper, I am hoping to be able to move off the grid in 5-10 years.

Same here Beeski. We're just waiting for the battery technology to get a bit better and cheaper, then we'll make the move to completely off-grid.

The net metering deal in the VI is probably one of the best in the US. You can't beat a 1:1 credit, which is legislated in for a 25 year period.

I don't mind the odd power outage...I just fire up the diesel generator if its more than say a half hour outage.

Re: Net metering

LiquidFluoride
July 10, 2017 03:22PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 1,940

Quote
vicanuck
Quote
singlefin
fdr:
Who would you suggest to use on STX? I'm looking for someone up on the current equipment. Who would you say is a good, residential solar system designer?

Mike Bruno of Electricity Wise Solutions.

[www.ewsvi.com]

He installed my 7.5kw system of 30 panels. We were extremely happy with everything and would highly recommend him.

I had a quote for him for a similar system, ended up quoting out around 55k

I bought my own system from www.solarwarehouse.com and did most the easy install myself (most of it really is easy) then hired local for the final connect (which went a little sideways, but worked out in the end).

I spent around 28k all said and done.

So.... I guess it depends on what your money's worth to you wink

Granted, I don't have "local support" for my system, but then I'm not afraid of reading a user manual or using google. (these things are super common these days, there's a ton of youtube channels that focus on solar).

Re: Net metering

LiquidFluoride
July 10, 2017 03:26PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 1,940

Quote
vicanuck
Quote
Beeski
ROI for net metering was under 3 years when I did it 4 years ago.
As battery technology improves / gets cheaper, I am hoping to be able to move off the grid in 5-10 years.

Same here Beeski. We're just waiting for the battery technology to get a bit better and cheaper, then we'll make the move to completely off-grid.

If your not afraid of DIY, you can build a 60kwh battery backup (lithium ion, not shitty lead acid that most solar uses) for around 8k... maybe even less now as Tesla starts producing 18650's en mass (the base lithium cell).

[www.youtube.com]

Re: Net metering

vicanuck
July 10, 2017 04:40PM

Registered: 8 years ago
Posts: 2,285

Quote
LiquidFluoride
I had a quote for him for a similar system, ended up quoting out around 55k ent a little sideways, but worked out in the end).

I spent around 28k all said and done.

So.... I guess it depends on what your money's worth to you wink

I think my 30 panel system was $34K from Mike. Then, $24K after the tax rebate. I can't remember exactly. It was a few years ago.

Re: Net metering

STTsailor
July 10, 2017 05:56PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 483

I am impatiently awaiting Tesla battery. Would love to cut the cord to WAPA. Between generator, solar and the batteries I could be energy independent. big grin

Re: Net metering

Gumbo
July 10, 2017 06:00PM

Registered: 4 years ago
Posts: 482

Does anyone know if its possible yo set up your generator to come on automatically in the event you batteries become drained, charge the bank and shut off?

Re: Net metering

Alana33
July 10, 2017 07:20PM

Registered: 6 years ago
Posts: 11,847

Thanks LF.

Re: Net metering

STTsailor
July 10, 2017 09:26PM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 483

Quote
Gumbo
Does anyone know if its possible yo set up your generator to come on automatically in the event you batteries become drained, charge the bank and shut off?

Based on marine energy management systems I can tell you it is a no brained. I am not aware of any land based consumer applications. Do some research.

Re: Net metering
avatar

Exit Zero
July 10, 2017 11:16PM

Registered: 10 years ago
Posts: 2,239

Quote
Gumbo
Does anyone know if its possible yo set up your generator to come on automatically in the event you batteries become drained, charge the bank and shut off?

If you have a dedicated 12V starting battery for the generator -yes.

Re: Net metering

vicanuck
July 11, 2017 08:18AM

Registered: 8 years ago
Posts: 2,285

Quote
Gumbo
Does anyone know if its possible yo set up your generator to come on automatically in the event you batteries become drained, charge the bank and shut off?

Generally, most modern transfer switch can be set to cycle the generator on a schedule.

Re: Net metering

LiquidFluoride
July 11, 2017 08:43AM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 1,940

Quote
vicanuck
I think my 30 panel system was $34K from Mike. Then, $24K after the tax rebate. I can't remember exactly. It was a few years ago.

off grid is quite a bit more expensive than netmeter, that's another reason net metering is so popular.

I have charge controllers, different inverts and sealed batteries which consisted of the majority of the cost of the system really.

I guess the tax break brought me down to 20k? roughly? My taxrefund that year helped buy the new horse trailer we have smiling

Quote
STTsailor
I am impatiently awaiting Tesla battery. Would love to cut the cord to WAPA. Between generator, solar and the batteries I could be energy independent. big grin

You can DIY a tesla battery for about half the price or less, TONS of channels on youtube doing this right now.

I'd expect the price to drop a lot because of this.

Quote
vicanuck
Quote
Gumbo
Does anyone know if its possible yo set up your generator to come on automatically in the event you batteries become drained, charge the bank and shut off?

Generally, most modern transfer switch can be set to cycle the generator on a schedule.

Mine transfers to wapa to fill my batteries, I also have an electric start generator as an input as well but haven't tested that one yet.

I went pretty cheap on batteries, I only have about 2 hours of power in my battery bank when the sun is down; but I also knew that products like the "Tesla power wall" will be flooding the market soon, so it seemed like a smart move.

Next year I'll be building a DIY powerwall, probably 60kwh (should be like 4 days of power on battery) out of tesla 18650 cells.

Re: Net metering

Gumbo
July 11, 2017 10:35AM

Registered: 4 years ago
Posts: 482

I'm waiting for the Powerwall to come down before going solar. My bill usually only runs about 250. 00. With good panel placement and a powerwall. I think a 4kw system will be enough. In the event I'm gone I'd lile the generator to charge the powerwall automatically so my food doesn't spoil if it rains for a week.
I haven't gone with a grid tie system because my bill isnt substanial, but I'd like to have clean power without the surges. Plus I've come home before and they disconnected the wrong house. They will pay for nothing to make it right. Not to mention, I don't trust the meter accuracy.

Re: Net metering

SkysTheLimit
July 11, 2017 05:05PM

Registered: 11 years ago
Posts: 1,865

Quote
Gumbo
I'm waiting for the Powerwall to come down before going solar. My bill usually only runs about 250. 00. With good panel placement and a powerwall. I think a 4kw system will be enough. In the event I'm gone I'd lile the generator to charge the powerwall automatically so my food doesn't spoil if it rains for a week.
I haven't gone with a grid tie system because my bill isnt substanial, but I'd like to have clean power without the surges. Plus I've come home before and they disconnected the wrong house. They will pay for nothing to make it right. Not to mention, I don't trust the meter accuracy.

Good thinking! Even if you did a 2KW and prioritize just a few circuits on solar....Fridge, pump, internet, fan......LED bulbs have come way down and really efficient. I encourage people to make changes before sizing their system. Gas dryer, solar hot water, LED bulbs, etc....Get rid of ALL hogs if you can first. Best bang for your buck.

I wouldn't even consider wind here. I see the majority of windmills sitting still. I know of two that slung a blade. Scary dangerous!!
Edit to say: The little wind turbines I do see spinning might be a good battery "topper" for cloudy days. The big ones,.....Too much investment and no certainty like solar.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/11/2017 05:07PM by SkysTheLimit.

Re: Net metering

Gumbo
July 11, 2017 06:29PM

Registered: 4 years ago
Posts: 482

I have done the things listed and each one really helped. I only have 2 power hogs. One is a hot tub which I run when the bedroom A/C goes off usually in December. I drain it around June 1, That about the time I start using the bedroom A/C at night. Surprisingly enough they both cost about 50.00 each to run per month. I have a 40 gallon quick recovery water heater that I have on a digital timer for 30 min. 2 times in 24hrs. It provides plenty of hot water. I compared its power usage to the Geospring heat pump water heater and could not justify the 1700.00 cost. Plus they seem to have issues, not to mention the dirty power issues. The water heater my friends have is the one with the solar panel and the 12v circulation pump that they were installing widely with the goverment rebate. That thing is never plugged in and provides more than enough hot water for their house and an their lower 2 bedroom apt. They have no a/c's but live at about 1400 ft. Have gotten rid of every power hog they could think of and there power bill runs about 200.00 for both the house and apt. together. That's pretty cool.
I guess a lot of us look at saving power as somewhat of a challenge or hobby. No down side.

Re: Net metering

LiquidFluoride
July 12, 2017 03:44PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 1,940

My goal has always been to be as self sufficient as possible, of course, it works out nicely that it's also economically beneficial when it comes to solar.

Re: Net metering

Gumbo
July 12, 2017 07:40PM

Registered: 4 years ago
Posts: 482

Quote
LiquidFluoride
My goal has always been to be as self sufficient as possible, of course, it works out nicely that it's also economically beneficial when it comes to solar.

I could not agree more. Its been a long term remodel for me. I want to figure an accurate power usage with little waste and build an off grid system to it. In the states it really is hard to compete with 12 cents a kwh. But here with all this great sunshine and high electric costs. It makes sense.

Re: Net metering

Bruno
July 14, 2017 07:41AM

Registered: 9 years ago
Posts: 44

So I looked up your quote (LiquidFluoride) from April 2014. It was $35k for an off grid system.

Been in the biz for 35 yrs now. We can design and install off grid/micro grid systems for any size project. The new Caribbean Cinemas is my project. No WAPA on the property. I'm not a big fan of Tesla batts yet. Short life cycles high cost. I'm not against new technology, but I'm for proven technology. The off grid batteries that I use get 5000+ cycles. They a recyclable. They are maintenance free. I have been doing this long enough to prove the results. The cinema will get 13 yrs life out of their batteries. That building is putting out a lot of juice everyday. We are making 480vac with 300A from solar and batteries. The biggest reason that batteries can last so long is not just the type and size of battery being used, it's the monitoring and management of them. There is much good info on youtube on any subject possible. Some good, some otherwise. While on youtube, look at some of the house fires from DIY solar installs. Yes folks with mechanical skills can put together a system buying parts from salespeople at discount solar warehouses. Some people work on their own cars, others take it to a Trained and Certified mechanic. Will it cost you more? Maybe. Ever done a job you wished you just paid someone else to do correctly? A cheaper price is not always a better value.

I'm not trying to bust anyones chops, just trying to put things in perspective.
If anyone is interested in solar A/C, PM for more info.

Re: Net metering

vicanuck
July 14, 2017 08:19AM

Registered: 8 years ago
Posts: 2,285

Mike Bruno/Electricity Wise Strategies knows the business inside and out and is extremely trustworthy and honest. I could not be happier with the work he did on my solar installation.

Re: Net metering

LiquidFluoride
July 14, 2017 01:47PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 1,940

Quote
Bruno
I'm not a big fan of Tesla batts yet. Short life cycles high cost. I'm not against new technology, but I'm for proven technology. The off grid batteries that I use get 5000+ cycles. They a recyclable.

On paper the powerwall in very limited applications wins, but very limited.

I agree that it needs more "time in the wild".


Generally Lead acid gets a good 3,000 cycles before loosing 80% cap... Lithium Ion gets around 5,000 cycles, so far more.

The "power" of the power wall is in it's advanced charge control & cell management, but that can also be done via open source (aka free) software and relatively inexpensive hardware. But then if you DIY there's no warranty, not for the whole system, just for the components.

Quote
vicanuck
Mike Bruno/Electricity Wise Strategies knows the business inside and out and is extremely trustworthy and honest. I could not be happier with the work he did on my solar installation.

I would suggest someone like him for those who aren't willing to learn or DIY their own stuff.

But, there are other options out there and it's not rocket science if you're willing to try it.

My entire philosophy is self sufficiency, that includes power production and maintenance of power production... plus I've gotten to learn so much about electricity it's been pretty interesting.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/14/2017 01:49PM by LiquidFluoride.

Re: Net metering

vicanuck
July 14, 2017 04:25PM

Registered: 8 years ago
Posts: 2,285

For something like a solar array that pays itself off in less than 4 years and has a 25 year + life, I'll have a pro do it.

I'm going to be saving so much (WAPA) money from the system over it's life that Mike's mark-up and installation cost will be infinitesimal.

Re: Net metering

LiquidFluoride
July 18, 2017 06:35PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 1,940

Quote
vicanuck
I'm going to be saving so much (WAPA) money from the system

I save around 400-500 a month... it's a no brainer down here. I still pay around 100-200 to wapa for what I use at night, but once I build my DIYwall I'll be at zero, I hope to build enough battery for 2-3 days worth of power (current prices minus labor and learning curve is around $9,000 for ~60kwh). Definitely a great investment no matter how you go about it.


My next investment is a well, that should pay itself back in about 3 years or less also... haha

Re: Net metering

Gumbo
July 18, 2017 06:59PM

Registered: 4 years ago
Posts: 482

Having a well here is like a gold mine, especially with livestock. I have heard that STX has considerable groundwater. That's great Man!

Re: Net metering

Scubadoo
July 18, 2017 10:05PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 1,996

Quote
LiquidFluoride
My next investment is a well, that should pay itself back in about 3 years or less also... haha

With all that free power just run your AC drip lines into your cistern and maybe get a few dehumidifiers to go with it. My larger mini-split drips onto a low pitched section of the roof and then runs into the gutter. There's always a steady stream of water out there during the day when it's running.

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