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Thread: Going Solar - woohoo

  1. #1

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    Default Going Solar - woohoo

    Today our solar panels got installed. Yay.

    There are eight of them and they are up there on the roof ready for the inspector to come and hit the on switch! I hope he comes soon, so we can take advantage of sunny days like this one.



    Just in case you are interested it did cost $2995, but they can generate A LOT more power than we consume so with credits back on our electricity bill, we should break even in less than 5 years. And we get to pay it off interest free for the next two years.

    I am so glad we did it. Woohoo

  2. #2

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    wow that is great! i would love to do somthing like that too!

    well done you!

  3. #3

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    How awesome!
    That seems really cheap - I'm sure I"ve heard much higher quotes.. hmm

  4. #4

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    We were talking about this the other night. Who did you go through and was it much trouble??
    Any info will be appreciated. I thought it would cost alot more than that so for us we will be looking into it now.

  5. #5

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    That's excellent news! I would personaly love to do something like that but we don't own the place we live in and that would be our first step really

  6. #6

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    My parents went solar earlier in the year - their bills have halved.

  7. #7

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    When they did my parents, it was arrive at 7am leave about 12pm, they are on the roof mainly, then in the fuse box a bit, pretty simple really.

  8. #8

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    Rivlas,
    Our retailer is Origin Energy. We did it through them. It was easy peasy. Just filled in a couple of forms. We had seen it in a flyer we had been sent with our bill.

    They gave us a date, but it got moved forward by 2 1/2 weeks because someone else cancelled.
    They arrived at 8.30, left by about 2.45. No-one got any sleep during that time though. It was like 120 elephants having a dance party on the roof!!! Just as long as you aren't looking after little ones that day!!

    Next step is for it to get inspected. Then they can turn it on.

    We also need to get a new smart meter which is being rolled out across all of Victoria anyway. We just need to get it ASAP so that we can feed back to the grid. Until we get that, we are just feeding our own usage (not making money, but not spending as much either!)

    We have not had to organise anything. Origin (the retailer) has sorted everything, they just ring and tell us dates.

    I'm perfectly happy with the way it's all gone. We only applied about 6 weeks ago, so not a huge delay. And as i said, Origin let us pay it off interest free for the next 2 years.

    Jo

  9. #9

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    oh wow, that's so cheap! We were quoted double that for our place. Our solar panels for our pool were $4500 alone. Must get DH to ring up again for another quote, maybe the price has come down since.

  10. #10

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    This is something I have wanted to do as well, but got scared cause 2 friends of mine who got theirs in the last year both paid nearly $20k for theirs. Neither of them have a pool or anything major like that to run. Just reverse cycle heating/cooling. Not sure why theirs was so much.

    I saw an ad not long ago on Tele where you paid $30 a week for 2 years, which worked out to be just over $3000. Might be something I will look into next tax time. Our tax this year is going to mechanical repairs.

  11. #11

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    Thanks Lenny. We have found Origin really helpful. They put in our cooling and many years ago replaced out hot water system.

    Thanks for all the information. hope you get yours turned on soon.

  12. #12

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    Woohoo! Enjoy seeing your new bills .

    We got this done back in December (we were lucky and got in on the government grant in the nick of time!), and we have seen a huge difference in our electricity bills. I'll have to ask DH what percentage we are saving (he pays the bills ), but he was raving when we got our last bill LOL!

  13. #13

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    DH went to a community talk thingy last night. The outfit that presented can do one for $5000 (after rebates) and that'd do for an average system. I reckon it'd cover our usage plus a little bit, so would still take a while to pay itself back.

  14. #14

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    Wooo Hooo!!! Solar rocks, we have been on full solar it for over 12 months now and it is fabulous

  15. #15

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    Awesome - well done! I'm guessing with 8 panels that's about a 1.4kW system? We've recently had a 1.9kW system plus solar hot water installed - we're generating about a maximum of 7.5kW p/day on a full sun day (winter in Cairns, east facing panels on a 16 degree sloping roof). Yesterday - overcast with light rain all day - we generated about 2kW, but had to put the solar hot water booster on. We use about 8-9kW per day, including our pool filter and electric cooking, so we're getting about 80% of our power covered.

    As for price - when the Green Loans program finished prices dropped significantly, as many installers couldn't be competitive. The RECs price is also higher than what it was a year ago, and still includes the 5x multiplier on the first 1.5kW of a system, but as this replaced the Solar Homes & Communities Rebate program (which was the $8000 rebate) the effective rebate is about 1/2 of what it used to be. So prices have dropped massively even just in the last six months as installers struggle. Don't get me started about the massive f-up the implementation and subsequent cancellation of the Green Loans program was for both the community and the industry.

    The other thing affecting price is quality - there are a lot of cheaper Chinese manufactured panels and inverters on the market and whilst they offer really competitive warranty terms, this may not be as reliable as using an established product, as one may not be able to access the warranty if the installer business goes belly up within the warranty terms. Whereas with the more established brands, even if the installer is no longer running one can still access the warranty directly via the manufacturer. The other issue is cost of inverter and future expandability - inverters that are expandable (ours is expandable up to 18 panels, for example) are more expensive than smaller capacity inverters.

  16. #16

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    The $2990 deal is still being advertised by them. The panels are Sharp and have a 25 year warranty so that's good i guess.
    Although i love the environmental thing, especially with Victoria burning black coal for electricity, i doubt we would have done it if it had cost too much upfront (like $20k - eek!)

    suse - i wish we needed ours for cooling! lol It was 3 degrees here this morning!

  17. #17

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    Woo hoo Lenny awesome stuff!! Enjoy once your smart meter goes in you can see how much you are producing and selling back to the grid.

    A lot of States now have a feed in tariff (FIT) where the retailer must pay you for the production of your power. The best deals are in NSW and ACT where it is a gross tariff so you get the 4-5 times the cost of your power back for 100% of your production regardless of what you use. In the other states with a FIT you get the nett amount (i.e. the stuff you don't use in the house and feed back into the electricity grid). It means pay back times can be longer but it really depends on how power guzzling you are. Changing your appliances, making your house less leaky and changing your behaviour can help heaps regardless of whether you have solar power or not.

    When we got our 1kW of solar panels put in our personal energy use went up a lot! I work in the energy efficiency/renewable energy area and still my behaviour reverted and I wasn't as careful about our energy use. We have changed that now, but be warned it may happen as you think you don't need to worry about it so much .

    Kat, for $20k they would have put a large kW system in. As Suse points out the you get 5 times the Renewable Energy Certificates (REC) price (hence $ credits) for systems up to 1.5kW and any kilowatts after that just the normal 1:1 rate in credits. Depending on where you live (the credits you earn depend on where you live and how much sun your area receives), your house's orientation, whether you have shading issues and personal energy needs the price and benefits gained will differ. If you are considering a solar system its worth doing some sums to see what the best option is for you.

  18. #18

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    Thanks to dusty and suse for putting a bit of an educational spin on this post!!

    You're right dusty, we only get to 'sell' what we don't use. And we only put in a 1.5kw system - so we get lots of RECs for that, which made it seem more attractive.
    There are some good govt website with information on RECs etc.

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