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Old 05-09-2014, 05:18 PM
 
Location: Florida
1,639 posts, read 2,187,847 times
Reputation: 1099

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Quote:
Originally Posted by born01930 View Post
There are systems where no batteries are needed, only there to supplement your daytime use...can't recall what the name is though. Since the daytime is when the AC runs the most that is when they help. Still you are looking at a lot of C notes up front and the payback is in decades.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1dobiedude View Post
Born, what you are referring to is a "grid tied system". The electric goes straight into the grid and is more likely than not to go to your neighbors house. If your state has incentive programs and incentives the cost effectiveness is much better. Just be careful of the PV panels and where they are made. With a 20 year guaranty it doesn't mean the company will be there when not if you need to file a claim.
The reason grid tied systems are popular is because they are cheaper, today's batteries can't handle the high rate of charge, and most electric companies used to pay you 50-80% or so of your overage. Today you are lucky to get paid 10 cents on the dollar for your overage, so all that power you are producing while away at work during the day (and the A/C is off or low) is wasted. Even if you run your A/C it's not using all the 10-20kw your system may be able to produce.

My point above was that if batteries were more advanced more people would opt to have a "bank" in their house and it would make sense. Of course they will still be tied to the grid for when needed. In remote areas off-grid systems are the norm...and work well...but so many batterie$ are needed to keep a house going after a day or two of clouds.
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Old 05-09-2014, 07:18 PM
 
1,917 posts, read 1,980,318 times
Reputation: 712
FPL has a system called net metering.

Basically your meter runs backwards when you are not using the full output of your solar system.

From the FPL website:
"You will receive a bill that is similar to your normal electric bill. The difference is that the bill will be lower than your bill would have been without net metering because all or a portion of the electricity your system makes will be consumed by you and not provided or billed by FPL. In addition, any extra electricity your system makes will be subtracted from the amount FPL provided you before your bill is calculated. If you made more extra electricity than you needed from FPL, the amount will be placed in your energy bank and used to offset future electricity you get from FPL. If you have a balance at the end of the year, a cash credit will be applied to your January bill."

I have been thinking about getting solar, thinking of it as a retirement plan.

If I pay for it now at age 55 an electric bill is one less expense I will have when I'm retired.

It's interesting that every time I read about a solar system one of the things that always comes up is the payback time but there is never any discussion about the value added to the home and how attractive it would be at the time you sold the home.

The other thing that never comes up is that the cost of energy is only going up in the future.

Gary
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Old 05-09-2014, 07:49 PM
 
1,264 posts, read 1,350,478 times
Reputation: 309
Quote:
Originally Posted by MartyGras View Post
FPL has a system called net metering.

Basically your meter runs backwards when you are not using the full output of your solar system.

From the FPL website:
"You will receive a bill that is similar to your normal electric bill. The difference is that the bill will be lower than your bill would have been without net metering because all or a portion of the electricity your system makes will be consumed by you and not provided or billed by FPL. In addition, any extra electricity your system makes will be subtracted from the amount FPL provided you before your bill is calculated. If you made more extra electricity than you needed from FPL, the amount will be placed in your energy bank and used to offset future electricity you get from FPL. If you have a balance at the end of the year, a cash credit will be applied to your January bill."

I have been thinking about getting solar, thinking of it as a retirement plan.

If I pay for it now at age 55 an electric bill is one less expense I will have when I'm retired.

It's interesting that every time I read about a solar system one of the things that always comes up is the payback time but there is never any discussion about the value added to the home and how attractive it would be at the time you sold the home.

The other thing that never comes up is that the cost of energy is only going up in the future.

Gary
Solar panels will still be available when you retire, and might (?) have a sensible payback by then. Run the numbers on investing your money in a solar electric system, and investing that same same money for the same period in the common stocks of AT&T, McDonald's, ConocoPhillips, Procter & Gamble, PPG, and National Grid (or pick your own favorites), with dividends reinvested. It's not even close. If your motive is altruistic, that's different.
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Old 05-09-2014, 08:15 PM
 
1,917 posts, read 1,980,318 times
Reputation: 712
Quote:
Originally Posted by wpc691 View Post
Solar panels will still be available when you retire, and might (?) have a sensible payback by then. Run the numbers on investing your money in a solar electric system, and investing that same same money for the same period in the common stocks of AT&T, McDonald's, ConocoPhillips, Procter & Gamble, PPG, and National Grid (or pick your own favorites), with dividends reinvested. It's not even close. If your motive is altruistic, that's different.
I know that at this point it may not make the best financial sense (I have not run the numbers) but there are a number of reasons why it would be attractive.

Home resale value
Not paying an electric bill
There will come a time when the 30% tax credit will not be available
A future moratorium against interconnects with the power grid

Some of the things we purchase don't need to make financial sense. As an example a pool!

Gary
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Old 05-09-2014, 08:28 PM
 
1,264 posts, read 1,350,478 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MartyGras View Post
I know that at this point it may not make the best financial sense (I have not run the numbers) but there are a number of reasons why it would be attractive.

Home resale value
Not paying an electric bill
There will come a time when the 30% tax credit will not be available
A future moratorium against interconnects with the power grid

Some of the things we purchase don't need to make financial sense. As an example a pool!

Gary
Other things that don't make sense that make sense: Corvettes, motorcycles, boats, good wine, cigars
Other things that don't make sense that don't make sense: Burial insurance, appliance warranties, time shares, solar electric systems :-)))
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Old 05-09-2014, 08:47 PM
 
1,917 posts, read 1,980,318 times
Reputation: 712
Quote:
Originally Posted by wpc691 View Post
Other things that don't make sense that make sense: Corvettes, motorcycles, boats, good wine, cigars
Other things that don't make sense that don't make sense: Burial insurance, appliance warranties, time shares, solar electric systems :-)))
I think I have to agree....I currently have or have had everything on your first list and nothing that is on your second list. LOL

I must admit that I currently own 3 boats......makes sense to me!

Gary
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Old 05-09-2014, 08:53 PM
 
1,264 posts, read 1,350,478 times
Reputation: 309
Quote:
Originally Posted by MartyGras View Post
I think I have to agree....I currently have or have had everything on your first list and nothing that is on your second list. LOL

I must admit that I currently own 3 boats......makes sense to me!

Gary
Boats are like kegs of beer - the idea that there could be "too many" is just nonsense.
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Old 05-10-2014, 05:16 AM
 
281 posts, read 287,360 times
Reputation: 90
You also get a 30% federal tax credit for solar.
I have a 10 KW system in Pa. We have net metering also. Battery systems are only installed in remote locations with no electric service.
In Pa. we also have SRECs. Solar renewable energy credits. For every 1,000 watts you generate you get about $45 but get to use the electric yourself.
Up here there are many companies that will put the solar on your roof for free and they collect all the credits while you get to use the electric.
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Old 05-10-2014, 05:25 AM
 
281 posts, read 287,360 times
Reputation: 90
One other thing I noticed after my solar was installed was that the attic stayed cooler since the panels shade the south side of the roof.
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Old 05-10-2014, 05:35 AM
 
Location: Port Charlotte
3,926 posts, read 4,745,494 times
Reputation: 3408
RE, value added: if you have a lease, it is personal property, and not added to value. As to value added, it is the net capitalized return, and only measurable against the market. Right now, the value added is well below cost if purchased.
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