Solar vs raft report - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 09-11-2018   #1
 
Redmond, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1973
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Solar vs raft report

Well our solar is installed and up and producing 7500+ kW when I checked at 2:00 this afternoon.
Inspections were good and the New electric meter is in and final payment has been made to the solar installer.

The basics.

Under $16,000 net costs.

11 years projected to pay for itself.

No new raft but I'm still grinning from ear to ear.

We did go on a fabulous 3 week to, in and around Yellowstone vacation.

Again I am surprised how affordable Solar is and sorry that I didn't do it sooner.

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Old 09-12-2018   #2
 
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Belgrade, Montana
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Had you done it sooner it wouldn't have been so affordable nor effective.... Good luck for the next 11 years. I hope it works better for you then it has for me!
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Old 09-12-2018   #3
 
Redmond, Oregon
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This thread was started as I was requested to do an update months ago from the thread:

https://www.mountainbuzz.com/forums/...ing-91970.html

I couldn't respond to it because of # of days since.

ElkHaven posted there #4.
He explains some of the troubles he had.

=====

5.5kW at 10:00 this morning.

Sunny day and things are starting off well.
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Old 09-12-2018   #4
 
Arnold, California
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Just keep them clean. Any dust kills efficiency so hopefully they aren't on your roof. Also keep in mind they lose about 5% efficiency per year. Maybe yours are a little better but that is about average. That means they will only produce about half at your payback period.
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Old 09-13-2018   #5
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Red Lodge, Montana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SherpaDave View Post
Just keep them clean. Any dust kills efficiency so hopefully they aren't on your roof. Also keep in mind they lose about 5% efficiency per year. Maybe yours are a little better but that is about average. That means they will only produce about half at your payback period.
0.5%, that's zero point five percent per year.

5% per year is a warranty claim. Also, they don't actually degrade in a linear fashion, but the average over a number of years usually works out to be about .5% or less. You are actually likely to get more performance degradation from loose connections or corrosion at terminals. It's a good practice to check all of the connections once a year (without zapping yourself).

Degradation is an impediment to the flow of electrons. It is mostly a factor of manufacturing methods and how the modules were handled during shipping and installation. Undue stresses on the modules cause microscopic cracks to form at the cell junctions and these grow during heavy freeze/thaw cycles or extreme vibration from wind. That's why I said that degradation is event driven and not linear.

There are a lot of modules that may have the exact same label on them but were actually produced in different factories using different methods. Type "A" may experience almost no degradation and Type "B" may be right at or over the warranty threshold. There's no practical way to know unless the modules were tested using very expensive equipment that is really only practical in large utility installations.

The reality in residential applications is that most people quickly stop paying attention to their solar after the "new" wears off and have no idea how well their system is performing. It just sits there until someone notices the red light that tells you that the inverter is faulted. It's the "small" performance issues caused by soiling, shading, loose or corroded connections, etc. that really affect the payback period. It is also advisable to set aside a rainy day fund because the inverter is almost certainly only designed to last 10 years, and replacing that will obviously change the payback calculation as well.
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Old 09-13-2018   #6
 
Redmond, Oregon
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Originally Posted by SherpaDave View Post
Just keep them clean. Any dust kills efficiency so hopefully they aren't on your roof. Also keep in mind they lose about 5% efficiency per year. Maybe yours are a little better but that is about average. That means they will only produce about half at your payback period.
Our installer has instructed us that we can hose the panels clean.

We just don't put cold water on a warm/ hot panel.

Its a early morning task.
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Old 09-14-2018   #7
 
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I have a small 600 watt setup.

I generally wash the panels once every month or so, depending how much wind has been depositing dust, and when it last rained to clean them off.

FWIW.

Rich Phillips
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