Help me understand how Solar is cheaper at home.

Albynsw

Well-Known Member
Yes I forgot the h.
Islanding is automatic with Tesla.

After the fires and blackouts down here lots of people bought gensets thinking they could just plug them in and go for it.
That came to a screaming halt.
Same thing has to have an islanding system to be legal.

What do you mean by islanding system for gensets? I have a caravan style inlet plug on my home that I connect to my genset and an isolation switch which isolates my home switchboard from the mains system and is then powered by my genie.
I had a warning buzzer fitted to the mains supply so that it will alarm when the power goes back on and then switch back to mains supply
Haven’t got to try it out yet
 

Toyasaurus

Well-Known Member
Your house must be isolated from the grid before power is supplied from another source.
E.G. solar or generator.
So that you don`t zap anyone working on the grid.
That is what you have on your system.
 

Albynsw

Well-Known Member
Your house must be isolated from the grid before power is supplied from another source.
E.G. solar or generator.
So that you don`t zap anyone working on the grid.
That is what you have on your system.

Ok, like they have done with mine
 

a1bert

Active Member
Just finished getting quotes for a 6.4 kw system in VIC, looked at the returns and even with Dan's subsidies couldn,t get my self to sign the papers. What turned me off was that i read a report re future price of electricity, and it is predicted to fall due to all the solar farms and wind turbines coming online, getting connected to the Australian inter connector. ie return of investment is going to go out
But as being reported above, not much use having solar if all your electrical appliances are going to be run during peak period
 

Albynsw

Well-Known Member
Investors have/are moving away from power generation as it is oversupplied in its current form and a poor investment
I am sure when we get a real fossil fuel powered alternative they will be all over it though
 

Toyasaurus

Well-Known Member
The only real green power system that can be used for base loading is geothermal.
The beetle brained Gov has killed pretty much all the reseach that was going on over here.
That`s what happens when the coal company`s pay your bills.
 

Albynsw

Well-Known Member
The only real green power system that can be used for base loading is geothermal.
The beetle brained Gov has killed pretty much all the reseach that was going on over here.
That`s what happens when the coal company`s pay your bills.

Regardless what the gubberment does, would you not think there are plenty of other players that would be all over it if it was a goer? Even the fossil fuel guys are looking for their next meal ticket
 

Albynsw

Well-Known Member
What do you mean by islanding system for gensets? I have a caravan style inlet plug on my home that I connect to my genset and an isolation switch which isolates my home switchboard from the mains system and is then powered by my genie.
I had a warning buzzer fitted to the mains supply so that it will alarm when the power goes back on and then switch back to mains supply
Haven’t got to try it out yet

Update
We have had a power outage for the last 6 hours with all this wind I think some lines are down from trees
Just got the genie out and cranked her up and I am up and running just fine to keep the fridges going and water pump and lights
Not enough grunt to run AC though but that is fine :)
 

Bigfish1

Well-Known Member
10 years ago I put a 6Kw system on the roof. $11,000. I,ve never had to pay a power bill. Always been in credit. We run a large air-conditioner (often 2) in the summer months here in Cairns. We run a pool pump 5 hours every day of the year as well. Average bill is around $450 a quarter. Currently after 2 1/2 years I am in credit to $1550. No batteries. Very happy.
 

Bru9

Active Member
That came to a screaming halt.
What gave it away? That back feeding is illegal for obvious reasons? How hard is it to run the basics like fridge off a genny straight with a extension lead? I have a 32kg 2kwh high end portable lifepo4 battery box/mini offgrid system (used for camping too) I use for blackouts to get me through those times which is rare as hens teeth, recharge it during day with the honda. All you need is a basic transfer switch setup with any genny.
The total cost of owning a battery is much higher than staying with the grid, going offrid is purely a way of life. You are ignoring all the slavery, solar heating, bomb shelter etc. Waste of your life if you ask me.

In my area the pricks turn off the power each day around once every 3-4months for 6-8hrs, and every 4-6months like clockwork at around 1am for 5mins-1hr, we have literally never had the power go out in big storms and wind, pretty amazing.
 

Toyasaurus

Well-Known Member
ALWAYS READ THE FINE PRINT.

I saw a segment on the news the other night about Social energy, they are paying 40c/KW for feed in from solar.
I thought yea har sigh me up.
I got on there site and found that the 40c only applies to the first 300kwh on one plan and 1200kwh on another.
This is per year, the way it was put across on the box was this 40c is for all kwh generated.

I had the same problem with Origin, the would give me 18c kwh, but only for the first 3 kwh per day the rest were at 4c.
I told them to sod off I`m going else where.
As soon as AGL got in touch with them to take over the new plan they were on the phone to me offering the same plan I had before.
@ 21c/kwh.
This was after the clownstick on the phone told me this plan no longer exist`s.

So as I said read the fine print.
Cheers. Ian.
 

Option

New Member
Solar power- I can't recommend it too highly. With the current deals I would not go below a 5 kW system at the minimum unless you have roof limitations.

Like most things, bigger is better as you can start to run heating and cooling for free. I wish I had gone bigger!!

We use Energy Australia as our supplier (NSW). Not a recommendation. Note that some electricity resellers are not interested in solar and offer rubbish prices to discourage solar clients- ignore and look elsewhere.

We have 6.6 kW of panels feeding a 5 kW inverter.
You are allowed to overdrive the inverter by 30%, this is recommended, because if you have just 5 KW of panels you only get the max 5 KW output for an hour a day. Overdriving with more panels means many more hours with the 5 kWH being generated.

Electricity costs us about 25c a kWH to buy (with discounts +++) and FIT is about 9c a kWH.

Batteries are expensive and are not (financially) viable at this stage. Fill your boots if want one.
This is because the grid is our battery (FIT unlimited at 9c kWH) so "cost" of power to us that was not stored is about 16c a kWH.
A $10,000 battery needs a lot of 16c kWHs to recoup. About 62,000 kWH or about 3100 days at 20KW/day sent to grid (you will generate more than this per day but will consume much of this).

I understand Queensland is starting to limit power sent to grid by individual solar systems in peak generating/low demand (like weekends) periods - not in NSW as far as I know.

Generally your savings come from using the power you generate. Pool pumps, for example are a perfect example of baseload that will be free (most days). Move your electricity consumption (washing, drying, ironing, cooking your roast etc etc) where possible to sunny day times.

If you do that then your power bill will fall by 75% or more. Ours went from $8-1000/q to $75-200/q

Certainly without question you will save real money. Payback time, with some of the deals available now, could be as little as a year.

Other points

1. Even the tiniest amount of shade across even one panel will degrade output substantially across the entire system.
2. Most inverters allow for two (or even more) separate solar panel "groups"(MPPTs), needed if panels face different directions or shading occurs earlier in a group of panels.
3. As mentioned solar power will not produce power in blackouts, to prevent the linesman from being electrocuted by your feed in. Fair enough!! This safety feature will be checked by the electricity provider on the sign off.
 

Toyasaurus

Well-Known Member
Hi.
Correct me if I`m wrong, are you saying you used to spend up to $1000 a 1/4.

I know quite a few people who spend over a grand per quarter, sorry I just can`t see where the power goes.
We used to use 9-11kwh per day winter/ 11-14 in the warmer months.
That`s 2 people plus visitor`s and dogs, pool, outdoor chest freezer and air con.

I just checked the tesla app and this month so far we have used 196kwh, AVG 8.9kwh/ day. grid supplied 1% of that, no idea why.
2 days had 20+kwh due to the A/C being on.

I agree with you about the solar paying better just by itself, I got more back when my Bridge system went boom, shut down the batteries.
But I had to pay for the power I used after sundown.
I get 21c kwh for what I supply to the retailer,
As for loosing a string due to shade or bird crap/ fault, not a prob when each panel has it`s own inverter.
I think the max we can feed back to the grid is 7.4kw.
My system should pay for itself in 12-14yrs, depending on the price, not including losses for blackouts.
We had 2 big ones with the fires this year, both were 2 days.

Cheers. Ian.
 

Option

New Member
Hi.
Correct me if I`m wrong, are you saying you used to spend up to $1000 a 1/4.

I know quite a few people who spend over a grand per quarter, sorry I just can`t see where the power goes.
We used to use 9-11kwh per day winter/ 11-14 in the warmer months.
That`s 2 people plus visitor`s and dogs, pool, outdoor chest freezer and air con.

I just checked the tesla app and this month so far we have used 196kwh, AVG 8.9kwh/ day. grid supplied 1% of that, no idea why.
2 days had 20+kwh due to the A/C being on.

I agree with you about the solar paying better just by itself, I got more back when my Bridge system went boom, shut down the batteries.
But I had to pay for the power I used after sundown.
I get 21c kwh for what I supply to the retailer,
As for loosing a string due to shade or bird crap/ fault, not a prob when each panel has it`s own inverter.
I think the max we can feed back to the grid is 7.4kw.
My system should pay for itself in 12-14yrs, depending on the price, not including losses for blackouts.
We had 2 big ones with the fires this year, both were 2 days.

Cheers. Ian.
Hi Ian,

Yep, I'm (mildly) embarrassed to say $1000 some quarters (pre solar) easy.

LOL- Make sure you never change your meter - I think you are getting some free samples!

Just your pool alone should be chewing a lot more power per day than your usage.

My pool pump and chlorinator alone = 1200 watts X 8 hours/day (summer) = 9.6 kWH/day x 25c/kWH = $2.4/day = $216 quarter.
Supply charge (fair enough - not usage) 90c/day= $81

Supply charge and the pool alone - there's $300 of the $1000.

Add house heating/solar pool heating in summer (another 800W pump!)/ house cooling/hot water/cooking/drying clothes with a couple kids using bar heaters to study with, easy = $1000/quarter

That is why I'm such a fan of solar- the rate of return vastly exceeds ANY realistic alternate investment, and would even make borrowing the money very viable.

Cheers and have a great XMAS.
 

Toyasaurus

Well-Known Member
I can see that would hurt.
I used to run the pool pump on sunday for 16hrs, that was off peak rates.
That was back at my old place, FIT only.
I don`t have a dryer, heating is either fan forced gas/LPG, or A/C.
New place has the new kit, Not FIT.
Like you most of the hi usage electrical is done when the sun is out after the batteries are charged.
I don`t pay for much elec but the connection fee is $1.56/day.

Best for crissy.
 

boobook

Well-Known Member
Well after spending too much time on this calculating and detailed analysing my hourly and monthly power use, feed in tariffs and charges I bit the bullet and ordered a 20KW solar system. I would like to thank @Toyasaurus , @Option , @Colly18 and @Bigfish1 for their persistence and sound advice.

It's a steep learning curve, with traps every step of the way. The biggest issue that was stopping me was that many electricity companies charge more for the power you use if you have solar installed. My previous power company charged 24.5c / kwh but if I had solar, they wanted 32c / kwh. This made the whole thing unviable. After much searching, I found that Red Energy didn't charge a premium if you have solar and give the 10.5c feed in tariff. Their usage tariff was ok too.

That was a game-changer for me, and swung me across. Then there is the hassle of dealing with solar companies. Sheez my phone and email has been running hot for weeks with enthusiastic salespeople. That nearly put me off too.

I have spreadsheets galore, solar calculators, and used my historical hourly electricity use portal for the past 12 months from my electricity company that I didn't even know was available before. LOL. I now calculate that I have a payback of just under 5 years. Thats a 20% return on my money.. Then I am $2500 ahead every year. If the electricity goes up then even better.

Thanks Earth. I'll let everyone know if I'm right in 5 years. Sheez the Solar scam companies and Electricity companies make it hard work though. It's like changing phone plans, electricity companies or insurance times 10.
 
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boobook

Well-Known Member
Only single phase Toyasaurus, but United Energy is my wholesaler and approved the larger feedin amount because there are not a lot of houses with Solar in the area. I'm classified as a micro embedded generator apparently.
 

Toyasaurus

Well-Known Member
Cool.
Please put up some pick`s when you get it installed.

This is what mine looks like.
Mr Tesla
20190419_105936.jpg
20190419_102305.jpg
 
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