Are solar panels worth the investment?

-Pjackso

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According to my calculations (which are probably not accurate):
Given: 350 watt panels, quantity 24 panels, roof mounted at 35 deg, no shading problems (trees):

Average monthly generation is 1034 Kwh/month.
PV generation maximum of 1483 Kwh for June, and a low of 692 Kwh in Nov - with the remainder of the months in-between.
With winter rates of $0.09/kwh, I'd expect about $65-100 savings per month.
Summer rates of $0.12/kwh, I'd expect about $150 savings per month.
This is all based on best-fit calculations, based on real-world PV outputs.


I'd strongly ask the contractor to get you real output generation data (2-3 years) for similar sized systems.
That would be the best comparison for expectations and KWH savings.


Best of luck.
 

HFS

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Lifetime warranty? If they stay in business.,

The guy who gave me a lifetime guarantee on my houses foundation repair 3 years ago? He's out of business.

Be careful, skeptical even, when some salesman blows smoke up your @@@ about lifetime warranties.
When somebody says 'lifetime warranty,' I figure it's for the lifetime of their current company (until they file bankruptcy and start a new firm under their wife or kid's name).
 

ssgrock3

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Roí is ******** in these things, a friend recently did it, her room is 10+ years, in other words the math will never make sense.
 

Jwryan84

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I have a company trying to sell me on the idea of solar panels for the house. After the rebates, the monthly cost would be the same or less than my monthly electric bill and they say there is a lifetime warranty on the panels.

Does anyone have solar power or know much about it? Is it worth the investment?

NO
 

Okvet03

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It made sense for my business when we could depreciate it. Not so much at home. I've held off, but my wife is fairly green so I imagine it will happen sooner or later, regardless of economics.
 

Kenneth Braud

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They won't run your AC in the case of a power outage in summer. A portable generator will as well as other essentials.
Every time you transfer energy from one form to another, you lose a considerable %-age of energy. Using solar for lights and low voltage apparatus, will work just fine, but will take some rewiring.
A new build or remodel would be a good time to have the system installed. They will have to be replaced within 20 years or if technology improvements dictate considerable savings. I plan on having them installled if and when I build after retirement. My spot lights are solar/battery and they work just fine so far, but it's only been 3 years. I've had other solar devices (small security/safety lighting) fail just after a year... dug into them and found it was the battery and there was no way to replace them...
The prices for solar panels are coming down and an enterprising person can build their own. They are a 'Fad' at this point, so you have to be very careful who and how you deal with these folks... if they have a phone bank of folks calling customers, it is a fad. I applied for a job at one of them and most of their employees were phone banks and installers... don't see them sticking around very long.
Also, remember, anything installed on your home has limited warranties and you will be responsible for repairs. Your power grid has been there and subsidized by the government for decades and you pay monthly for the use/maintenance.
 

Treemansam

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I did my own (we get by with a lot a help from our friends). I spent just over 10k$ for 24 panels and 28 big SEaled lead acid batteries.
The problem is I have an electric hot water heater and my $4k inverter can’t handle it.
The solution is install passive solar hot water heater and leave the tank on grid.
But let’s be real here most Oklahoma power company’s won’t buy excess solar.
The point is independence. I can live with seasonal hot water. Or heating it on the woodstove if I get desperate.
 

2busy

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Grid tied means when the grid is off so is your solar. My system is not tied to the grid. I can run with grid, solar or generator plugged in. The 10 circuit transfer switch let's me choose what and when. I can run partial grid and solar at the same time.
 

VarmintHunter59

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I'm interested.
If you don't mind, can you provide general information?

Total cost of the install?
How many panels (quantity and watts)?
Contractor estimated Kw-output? (per hour/day/or month)


For what it's worth, I looked into the idea of solar panels for my house also (years ago).
I ran the numbers for estimated Kwh per month and compared the saving to the system costs - and calculated a 20 year ROI.
And that's assuming no problems for 20 years, and included the tax credit when it was in full force (30%?).

I'd like to have some solar panels, but I can't make the numbers show positive return.
Needless to say, no solar panels on my house.


And they will need to be replaced in 20 years also so basically the outgo money is the same and has to be revisited every 20 years. Save nothing.
 

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