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Old 04-23-2015, 08:07 AM
 
Location: Summerville, SC
288 posts, read 393,509 times
Reputation: 122

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I've done a search though the forums, and the only solar related threads I could find are from 2009.

Has anyone on here had solar panels installed at their homes, or had a survey of your home to determine the viability? Any experience with the State solar rebate program (25%), or how well the local utilities deal with these systems on their grid? I know there are a couple providers/installers in the area, but I'm not finding a lot of reviews or experiences.

We're looking at the possibility of having a 4-6kWh system installed, so I was just looking for some personal experiences.

Thanks!
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Old 04-23-2015, 09:39 AM
 
37 posts, read 28,316 times
Reputation: 15
I'm just looking into it myself and the only reviews I could find was on Angie's List. I've contacted several to give me quotes and will probably be installing in the next month or so.
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Old 04-23-2015, 09:57 AM
 
37 posts, read 28,316 times
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From what I've been seeing so far, the system should pay itself off in just over 5 years, after the 30% federal and 25% state tax credits are factored in. The federal can be claimed all at once, but the state takes several years as there is a per year limit for claiming. The local utility (SCE&G) currently has two programs, one where you can do a "Net use", where your solar generated offsets the power used, and if the solar panels generate more than you use that month, you get a credit for the difference to be used in a future month. Or you can do a buy all sell all plan where you sell all the power generated, then buy what you need as normal. Right now, the rates that they buy are low (7 cents), but one rep I spoke to said in June, the rates would change to more like 22 cents per kWH due to an increased promotion for renewable energy.
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Old 04-23-2015, 09:58 AM
 
Location: Columbia SC
8,848 posts, read 7,641,615 times
Reputation: 11957
If you are in an HOA be very careful. While they might not be able to stop solar power panels from being installed, they have some control over where and how they are installed. Be careful.
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Old 04-23-2015, 11:04 AM
 
Location: Charleston, SC
5,615 posts, read 12,789,652 times
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The builder who lives across the street from me has installed them for others as well as his own home. If anyone would like his contact info I can ask if he still does this and pass it along.
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Old 04-23-2015, 11:05 AM
 
3,131 posts, read 3,114,457 times
Reputation: 1400
evertec, what kind of prices are you seeing?
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Old 04-23-2015, 08:45 PM
 
Location: James Island, SC
3,150 posts, read 2,910,340 times
Reputation: 890
Following this thread
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Old 11-05-2015, 03:42 PM
 
7,897 posts, read 3,145,684 times
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I don't quite get why solar hasn't caught on. I personally don't have a business case for it since I rarely end up living anywhere longer than 5 years, my electric bill only averages about $190 / month, and I hate the way they look on a residential roof. If I had $10k or so laying around I'd rather invest it and use the gains to offset my electric bill, as it's much more portable income and lower maintenance than running a power plant on my roof.

However, I don't even see solar panels on a huge established businesses here. It sounds like there's few downsides to putting them on Home Depots and Walmarts. I know Walmart puts them on other stores in high subsidy states, but surely it would pay for itself regardless of location. Big box stores have huge flat roofs with no trees and dont exactly move every 5 years. So what doesn't work for me seems like a no brainer on giant big box stores.
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Old 11-06-2015, 04:22 AM
 
Location: Seacoast NH
108 posts, read 67,453 times
Reputation: 152
I've been looking into this as well for when I relocate to the Summerville area. I've found some reviews at Solar power company reviews: find the best solar power company in your area for installation but haven't talked to any of them yet.

Also, solar shingles are making their way into the mix. Dow has started making them and while not available in South Carolina yet, they are in North Carolina so maybe soon for South?
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Old 11-06-2015, 09:03 AM
 
37 posts, read 28,316 times
Reputation: 15
I ended up getting a 45 panel system, I went with Sustainable Energy Solutions. Now is a good time to jump on it since the federal tax credit is ending next year and the prices for panels has gone down a lot compared to the past. My system ended up being just over $40k, but I'll get 55% back in tax credits and the new SCE&G program gives 4 cents per KWh more than the going rate for buying electricity through them. Let me know if you have any questions.
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