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Old 11-05-2012, 01:10 PM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
12,540 posts, read 16,278,911 times
Reputation: 3669

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Quote:
Originally Posted by annerk View Post
I guess it also depends on the big picture. Even if they are east facing they would probably get enough sun to pay for themselves at some point. Once they are installed, there's very little maintenance cost.
it's just because we don't have as much direct exposure as you do. i'd probably still do it. my issue is tree cover. but yeah...i think i'd do this instead of a whole house generator.
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Old 11-05-2012, 02:06 PM
 
18,642 posts, read 17,809,961 times
Reputation: 22335
Quote:
Originally Posted by bradykp View Post
if you have proper emergency candles, fire is not a huge risk. still a risk...and they can be knocked over. but emergency candles are the way to go (not candles people would use everyday). but you're right...why not eliminate the risk completely and use lanterns/flashlights.
I agree about the emergency candles. I have the pillar type. I affix a candle to a heavy tempered glass base and put it in a Pyrex baking pan. Neither the clumsy family members nor the cat have been able to cause a house fire. A votive candle or two is quite safe if placed in a foil lined baking dish.

What would I have done differently? I would have stored more gas. I wasn't effected by this storm but, every weather event which I've "suffered" has seemed to revolve around how much gasoline was available.
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Old 11-05-2012, 02:26 PM
 
757 posts, read 1,032,914 times
Reputation: 469
What I did right
========
1.) almost a full tank of gas except for the local driving around town the weekend before the storm
2.) withdrew some cash
3.) charged up all my cellphones and laptops

What I lucked out
==========
1.) living near major highways and being able to get to PA or DE if need be for gasoline
2.) had a box of matches for lighting the gas stove
3.) I had two Maglite LED flashlights XL50 which run on 3 AAA batteries; these are great; super bright; American made

What I will do
=======
1.) portable propane heater and small canisters of propane
2.) small butane hot plate in case natural gas is cut off; these are found in Asian supermarkets
3.) fill bath tubs with water in case water is lost
4.) UPS to run my laptop and cable modem+router for a few hours each day
5.) portable battery radio, but the one in my car probably gets better reception
6.) hire electrician to install interlock kit for the circuit breaker panel to let me properly connect up a portable generator
7.) buy a portable inverter generator
8.) buy more canned food
9.) fill up the entire refrigerator with bags of ice.


The cold was what really got me. I wish I had had that portable propane heater. I already have carbon monoxide detectors.
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Old 11-05-2012, 02:52 PM
 
Location: Central Jersey - Florida
3,257 posts, read 11,495,397 times
Reputation: 1984
Quote:
Originally Posted by annerk View Post
Why would you install solar panels for aesthetic purposes? They aren't exactly attractive.
Do you actually read what people post. I was responding to your post about people with solar panels installed on the side or rear of their home. If the side or rear of their homes aren't a southern exposure then they are not getting full benefit of the panels and maybe only getting minimal benefit. My nephew designs solar systems and that's straight from him. I stand by my post. If you want solar panels and the front or side of your home faces south then that's where they go.
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:26 PM
 
11,682 posts, read 13,522,720 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by exhdo1 View Post
Do you actually read what people post. I was responding to your post about people with solar panels installed on the side or rear of their home. If the side or rear of their homes aren't a southern exposure then they are not getting full benefit of the panels and maybe only getting minimal benefit. My nephew designs solar systems and that's straight from him. I stand by my post. If you want solar panels and the front or side of your home faces south then that's where they go.


Clearly, annerk is one of those folks who has a hard time admitting a mistake.

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Old 11-05-2012, 03:31 PM
 
166 posts, read 214,493 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bradykp View Post
absolutely. and i've seen panels on front roofs, it doesn't bother me from curb appeal, but i understand why it would bother some. and ditto on the windmill thing. but you can get smaller ones for a home...still, they are unsightly to some. i was just thinking if you had a tree come down on your house - solar panels don't do you much good then. but overall...i wish even more i had them now. so what are your thoughts...better investment than a whole house generator...even though it'd be more expensive?
Doesn't look like solar panels helps when electricity goes out. We were thinking of doing it as well.

When the power goes out, my home is still powered.
Fact: When the power goes out, grid-tied systems go out too. Thatís because itís not safe to be pushing electricity back out onto the wires while workers may be trying to fix the problem, so your inverter (the big box near your meter that turns DC electricity created by the panels into usable AC current) recognizes that the grid is out and shuts your system off. The solution? Spend a couple hundred on a generator or donít worry about it too much; the power doesnít go off that often.
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Old 11-05-2012, 04:13 PM
 
26,582 posts, read 49,433,658 times
Reputation: 12884
Quote:
Originally Posted by exhdo1 View Post
Do you actually read what people post. I was responding to your post about people with solar panels installed on the side or rear of their home. If the side or rear of their homes aren't a southern exposure then they are not getting full benefit of the panels and maybe only getting minimal benefit. My nephew designs solar systems and that's straight from him. I stand by my post. If you want solar panels and the front or side of your home faces south then that's where they go.
Most HOA's and some towns don't allow them on the front of the house, so that won't work for everyone. If you live in a more rural area, put them where you want, although if you've got a lot of land it might make sense to put in a whole array on the property and sell some of the power back to the local utility.

We've looked into it and it's something I think we'll do in the next couple of years. My husband feels we'd generate enough power to sell some back to our electric company.
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Old 11-06-2012, 08:46 AM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
12,540 posts, read 16,278,911 times
Reputation: 3669
Quote:
Originally Posted by Priscilla151 View Post
Doesn't look like solar panels helps when electricity goes out. We were thinking of doing it as well.

When the power goes out, my home is still powered.
Fact: When the power goes out, grid-tied systems go out too. Thatís because itís not safe to be pushing electricity back out onto the wires while workers may be trying to fix the problem, so your inverter (the big box near your meter that turns DC electricity created by the panels into usable AC current) recognizes that the grid is out and shuts your system off. The solution? Spend a couple hundred on a generator or donít worry about it too much; the power doesnít go off that often.
you'd cut your tie to the grid, just like you would do if you had a whole house generator hooked up to the panel. it's possible, and simple.
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Old 11-06-2012, 09:00 AM
 
13,664 posts, read 11,177,443 times
Reputation: 16510
Quote:
Originally Posted by bradykp View Post
I was thinking this weekend, for the amount of money one would spend on such a setup, why not do solar or windmill instead? i guess they could get damaged in a storm, but you could use them year round...
You cannot use solar when there is no electricity. It is immediately shut down as almost all arrays are grid tied. This means that they would be sending power BACK up the lines. This is an impassable safety feature to protect both the public and lineworkers.
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Old 11-06-2012, 09:05 AM
 
13,664 posts, read 11,177,443 times
Reputation: 16510
Quote:
Originally Posted by bradykp View Post
you'd cut your tie to the grid, just like you would do if you had a whole house generator hooked up to the panel. it's possible, and simple.
And illegal in NJ.
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