Saturday, August 29, 2009

Pump up the Panels! - all the twos, 22!

29 Aug '09: For the Photovoltaic - we have a currently have a proposal for 17 PV panels, to give us a rating of 3.06 kw. The unit costs such as the meters, scaffolding, regulators etc are the same if we have 10, 15, or 20, and the maximum we are allowed to aim for is 4kw. So while we have the chance, we should maximise by aiming for 4kw!

So we have asked EvoEnergy to increase the installation to 22 PV panels, to give us 3.96 kw, the highest we can go before being counted in a different Feed in Tariff bracket. That would generate 2940 kwhr/annum on our ESE facing 40ยบ roof - Generating income + savings of £1336. This is a 25 year contract of guaranteed income, as long as the system is maintained and working.

This means that on summer days, we would generate the entire day's requirements for the house before we have breakfast, the rest is profit. Only 15 mins is enough to power our washing machine for an hour. One hour of good light powers our supersize fridge for 24 hours of continuous running.

We shall have access to the panels from our rooflights, and will have a display in the kitchen to show the statistics of generation.

We will get a meter fixed to the Ice Energy Heatpump, so we can see what that is using day by day. Unfortunately, I haven't recorded precise consumption week by week for the last 2.5 yrs, but I have all our quarterly bills and know precisely the annual consumption, so if our total consumption is reduced by the Solar Earth Charging, we know it has worked.

For the initial installation cost, it only took about 10mins on line, entering details of our project, to get approval for a grant of £2500 from the Low Carbon Trust, subject to us completing it and submitting proof. They also require confirmation that all the other obvious good things have been done, such as insulating the loft, and fitting low energy lightbulbs.

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