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Thread: Solar Panels

  1. #1
    Senior Member RSM-Gazza's Avatar
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    Default Solar Panels

    Anyone got them, if so how have they performed for you against your expectations. Yes there are many variables in the equation.

    Feed in tariff to the grid now being screwed to 8 cents in Vic has certainly stuffed up exporting power to a degree during the day to pay for night usage.
    Anyway I have called a respected local company to give me a quote in two days time, as I don't want much of a power bill moving forward and for when I'm not working in the years to come.
    Want a quality system with top notch panels like say LG neons provided the quote doesn't send me to the cleaners.
    Basically want to future proof it as much as possible from the beginning knowing it will cost more initially. But at 55yrs now, this is a till end of life investment. So spending a few extra $$$'s now will not be regretted later.

    My house which I posted about early last year re LED, was 100% converted to quality LED lighting inside and outside including my big shed.
    So apart from 11% discount on the power bill currently I have no way to decrease the bill further without installing the Panels.
    I reckon in 6 yrs when my initial investment is payed off, electricity will 40cents Kwh. So need to prepare now whilst my wife and I are still working.
    Cheers Garry

  2. #2
    Member of Forum Stripes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solar Panels

    We had a few companies come out a few months back. Big difference in what they were saying. The first company basically said install as many as possible to make more money back. it was going to cost us 14k after the rebate.

    The second guy came out and explained the cost to install that many panels is just not worth it. He explained they aim to reduce the bill by 50%. He explained the reasoning behind it and it all made sense but i can't think of it now! He said it's best to switch appliances to run when the solar is actively producing power in the day, so run the pool pump during the day and stuff like that. He was very very good and gave us a quote for about 5k with about half the panels as the first company and it seemed a much better plan. he also said electricity prices should settle down now, but the first guy was carrying on with all these rubbish figures that we would be paying 64k in power over the next 10 years if trends continue.

    Just get a few different companies out and make sure you are 100% confident in the company you are using. Most of the panels are made in China but the quality varies. I think the warranty on them was 20 years for the second company we had come out, and only 12 for the first companies much more expensive setup that wasn't going to be efficient. We haven't got it yet as the prick of a client that went broke on me was the money that was going to be used to purchase it.

    For others interested there are green energy low interest loans you can get but they are full doc loans.

  3. #3
    Senior Member RSM-Gazza's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solar Panels

    The second company you had is where it all sits with current rebates from export power from the home system.

    My neighbour 24sq home + pool has 20 panels and get an approx $45 credit every quarter, but they got it at the time when the FIT was a mega 40cents. But they paid heaps more for the install as they were dearer then.
    My house is similar, but larger pool and the shed setup.
    Spending huge dollars to exported day power at 8 cents is kinda not good. Although I'm inclined to ensure l'm exporting a little during the day to offset in a small way night usage, but not go over board in trying to achieve such.
    By using very high efficiency panels ie the LG neons which provide power much earlier in the morning and evening and during overcast or winter day seems the way for us. But there will be a higher cost initially, which will be forgotten about years later.
    I would expect that the SMA invertor would be the only thing needing replacement in my life time.

    As mentioned we have a very trustable company in town and my neighbour used them. But they won't be the cheapest quote but I prefer products/ manu's used that will be in business through out the lengthy warranty period, including the installer.

    Basically want to enter seniors life with an energy efficient house, have a minimum of bills and zero debt moving forward. Next year we will replace both pool pumps with the new gen 8 star energy efficient ones.
    We think that doing such things now will give us more cash flow to enjoy the seniors life with less financial stress and assist with medical bills if our health conditions were to change.
    Cheers Garry

  4. #4
    Member Redeye's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solar Panels

    I'm having dramas at the mo'....our inverter shat itself and am having a looong wait for the replacement to be sent out (been 2 months now grr) our set-up (1.5/6 panels) has cut our bills by about 40% - should have got a German made inverter though. We installed a heat-pump hot water system at the same time which has reduced costs, but in hindsight we should have gone solar there too




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  5. #5
    Senior Member RSM-Gazza's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solar Panels

    At least your inverter didn't catch fire or the like.

    I think I'm happy to have a SMA inverter installed. But I'll know more tomorrow night after the home quote visit. Will probably have to back off and just get a 4.5Kw with Trina panels when I see the final quote options and attached $$$'s.
    Having a concrete tile roof of 11 years old, I want to get up on the roof and apply a sealer coat on the tiles that will be covered as this a job I want done to the total roof before winter or into mid spring.
    But I also want a quote option for 2 lengths of angle support frames to run across my pergola colorbond roof to carry most of the panels.
    Cheers Garry

  6. #6
    Senior Member Scooby Steve's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solar Panels

    Research the panels, the quality of panels seems to vary quite a bit, starting to hear a few stories on panels that just stop working.

  7. #7
    Senior Member DavidS's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solar Panels

    I don't have that problem, I have 450 watts of Solar on roof and have 200ah Lithium battery that runs everything including a 3000watt to 6000watt inverter. The solar will charge the batteries by 12noon on a overcast day and on a good day they should recharge the batteries by 10am. So no electricity bills here LOL ( that's on my new home see the Avatar)

  8. #8
    Senior Member RSM-Gazza's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solar Panels

    Finally got my Solar System going last Monday 26th May after having the power company program my Smart Meter for import and export capability.

    Got a 4.86Kw System with 18X 270w Premium LG Neons and a German built Kaco Inverter. The Kaco inverter is one of the best inverters to communicate to a Selectronic battery system either now or down the track. If that path is chosen.
    Paid more for a premium install and high product spec, but its a life term investment leading into and throughout retirement.
    Yesterday and today have been all day rainy & heavily overcast and to the point were the streets light are on during the day due to poor light and it's still producing enough power to power the house during the day. Provided the clothes dryer and oven is not on.

    Lg Neons are considered exceptionable in performance and even better in low light, early morning and late arvo generation. No shade on the system running two strings with 9 panels on each string and the roof is North 10 deg to East on an elevated site. Its gone be great when the weather clears.
    Cheers Garry

  9. #9
    Senior Member RSM-Gazza's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solar Panels

    Solar Yield today,
    Last two days we had 40mm of rain, today woke up to very wet conditions and light fog for early morning and then rolling scattered clouds covering 50% of the sky and it times thick looking of the kind that carry rain.
    I started work at 10.45am due to the earlier fog with wet grass about. The solar system yielded 14.450kw under these conditions, pretty happy with that. The solar guys here will under stand my ramblings.
    Cheers Garry

  10. #10
    Senior Member RSM-Gazza's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solar Panels

    Got me final departure electricity bill from Energy Australia today and the first and final bill since going solar from them.
    After we got the formal paper work from this mob that the solar was ready and the smart meter reprogrammed and fee billed. New contract plan from them for solar set up and start date e-mailed to me.
    But we had flicked them formally after this info came through, to change to Momentum Energy effective at the next meter read because Energy Aust penalises you with mega rate hikes for going solar.

    Well got me delayed bill from this useless for nothing power retailer and was billed at incorrect rates and no solar export credits and were exporting huge kw amounts daily.
    So I ring, surprise got through rather quick and the nice girl says yes we have the export readings and yes they are large exports knowing there only 8.80 cents p/kw inc of GST. Will send new bill in 10 days. Sharks with big serrated fangs they are, they always stuff up bills and they know a lot people just don't ring to complain or have the confidence to complain and request it fixed. They did it to my elderly dad and I constantly had to take over with pensioner discounts dropping out and the initial sign up offer rates not showing up on the bills in the agreed period.

    Same time last year prior to solar they billed me for 6 months of power in one go and I had a receipted paid bill for the first 3 months of that 6 months bill.
    Ring again, oh yes sorry, we will send new bill Mr Garry, damn Sharks they are.
    With a 4.86kw Lg Neon Kaco Invertor System, one should go hybrid and just use battery at night and export from 10.00am after the batteries are charged and pay for a daily grid supply charge less export power credit.
    But maybe don't need too as changing to momentum the rates are so much kinder, especially for solar along with the excellent off peak and week end rate offered.

    End of Rant, but beware check your bills. The ACCC only have serrated teeth like a Tenon Saw and unlike these mega fanged power retailers
    Cheers Garry

  11. #11
    Senior Member seliment's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solar Panels

    Quote Originally Posted by RSM-Gazza View Post
    .....The ACCC only have serrated teeth like a Tenon Saw and unlike these mega fanged power retailers
    +1 re EA and their associated hangers on.

    Re the ACCC ....
    You credit them with teeth of a tenon saw .... More like one that has been (ab)used for cutting stone.
    I thinks Rod Sims might be trying to sharpen what's left, but the previous boss of ACCC, Samuels was worse than useless as he appeared to toady or dance to tunes of big business.

  12. #12
    Senior Member DavidS's Avatar
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    Default Re: Solar Panels

    Garry you should look at putting in a bank of Lithium batteries, then you could run all night on the batteries, then by midday your battery bank would be charged and the rest of the power generated could be credited back to your account. This would really stick it up your supplier, they would have to pay you each month LOL

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