Solar Power systems

udo's picture
udo started the topic in Sunday, 8 Jun 2014 at 7:50am

Solar power .
set up costs
off grid
grid connected
buy back tariffs
your story

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southey Thursday, 2 Feb 2017 at 10:25pm
mundies's picture
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mundies Friday, 3 Feb 2017 at 9:58pm

Champion. Thanks Southey...

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udo Friday, 31 Mar 2017 at 9:41pm

mundies did you go ahead with your Solar install ?

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southey Saturday, 9 Sep 2017 at 7:48pm

No one else interested !?
Batteries are becoming more popular , a lot of Major Car companies are talking an electric version of all models . European countries are threatening to ban ICE carry some irrc dates like 2030 - 2040 .... Tesla model 3 launched .....

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udo Saturday, 25 Nov 2017 at 8:42am

Has anyone added a Tesla powerwall battery storage to there Solar setup ?

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sharkman Saturday, 25 Nov 2017 at 9:28am

yes have quite a few friends in the USA who have done that , Brilliant!

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GuySmiley Saturday, 25 Nov 2017 at 9:30am

Sometime ago there was another forum tread on this which was well subscribed.

indo-dreaming's picture
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indo-dreaming Saturday, 25 Nov 2017 at 4:03pm

I saw an article somewhere of a guy that made a homemade set up from old laptop batteries or something.

Heres the article

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truebluebasher Monday, 2 Dec 2019 at 2:22pm

Solar Power mad Swellnetonians shouting a Rooftop Revolution

Tune into ABC (Power Switch) this week (Dec 1-7 /2019)

Episode 1 Solar Surge
Aussies are installing a world leading six solar panels per minute.
Solar is now Australia's largest generator of Electricity...
During day hours Solar will very soon exceed Australia's power needs

Qld 36.7%
SA 35% (October...Sth Adelaide Solar generated more power than it was using)
WA 28.8% (Solar exceeds largest WA Coal Power Plant)
NT 18.1%
NSW 18%
Vic 17.9%
ACT 16.1%
Tas 15.1%

There is so much reverse Solar power flow that feeble Oz Coal Grid can't take it!
Generally only 5% -10% of Solar Power is utilised by grid.
Sadly 20%-25% of free Oz energy is lost to antiquated grid.

Govt's now give out 40,000 x $6,000 rebates on batteries to store your Solar.
Slow down Solar until Govt's can downgrade backward central Coal power grid.
Basically people & Solar are 20 years ahead of Dark age Govt's who stall them.
Yeah! Go figure, as Oz Solar industry is already 20 years behind where it should be!

[NEWS] GC Mayor wants Nuclear Power Station by 2024...
One of them Big Dirty ones!
GC Postcards are looking drab & Mayor desperately needs iconic drawcard!
Will you tourists just relax!
It will be powered by GC local's roof top solar panels obviously.

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indo-dreaming Monday, 2 Dec 2019 at 4:06pm

I believe the grid in most if not all states is now privately owned, so how is it the governments fault?

Like it or not we are going to have to pay for upgrades needed, electricity prices will have to rise to cover the upgrades needed.

Id expect thats why SA has the highest electricity prices in Australia and up there with most expensive in the world.

When battery tech gets better and cheaper and people start going off grid and less money comes in to maintain poles and lines we will also need to cover the loss of revenue.

IMHO most likely system is one where as long as the main lines passes your front door, even if your not hooked up you wont be able to avoid paying a regular bill, IMHO a decent lump sum in charges for having the luxury of lines passing your front door (similar to how water/sewerage works)

Then when electric vehicles really kick in and government loses tax revenue from fuel, that will have to also be a much higher rego fee?

I guess the good news is electric cars will be cheaper to run, so even with inflated rego and highly inflated energy prices, cross fingers we will still be better off dollar wise.

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truebluebasher Monday, 2 Dec 2019 at 11:36pm

tbb is speaking in a worldly sense but will also demonstrate Fed Govt rorts.
First a small history to celebrate Oz Solar achievements.

1982 World First Australian Solar Car Sydney -Perth in 20 days (10 days ) faster than 1st fuel car for same trek.
1985 NSW Uni breaks 20% efficiency barrier for solar cells.

1999 Democrats GST deal forces Lib Govt into Solar Rebates +Tariff
(PVRP) Photovoltaic Rebate Program part of (MBE) Package [middle class welfare]
$5,500- $8,250-house x 4 yrs (News of deal Instantly triggered a PV sales slump)

Not the best of Starts...lets give the Oz Greatest treasurer a few chances

Jan 2000 PVRP was brought forward to end PV sales slump
Oct 2000 Over subscription reduced rebate $5/W or $7,500 max

Feb 2003/4 Over subscription brings on a monthly cap (No idea!)

May 2003 -July 2005 (Extension) but lower $4/W or $4,000 max

May 2005- June 2007 (Extension)Falling 10% steps to min $3.50/W to End.

May 2007- June 2009 (Extension) Maximum Rise to $8/W or $8,000/house (WTF!)
Treasurer Costello must be confusing this with the Baby Bonus?
So Howard was killing the scheme- flips'n'doubles rebate! (What could cause that?)
Howard started just beneath that price & knew what damage that caused.(Mad!)

(Pause) Now read the Polls...
This was Howard's $1b parting gift for incoming Kevin 07...(Nov)
Solar was once again a Political football. (re: Democrat GST Solar rebate deal)

Kev 07 hits the ground running...
Applications were going thru the roof...sliced bread Kev was fast becoming toast.
Rudd couldn't cancel the rebate but set about defusing Howard's grenade.
SHCP Solar Homes & Community Program (New name to ward off the masses)
Now Grid only + $100,000 cut off (1st blow on Howard's Middle class welfare)

2007-08 (11,000) 2008-09 (121,376) Rudd shut it down on stroke of Midnight.
9th June 2009 - 4,000 Punters were locked in stores that night sweating receipts.
tbb squeezed into showroom with neighbours & half the town...quick pass the pen.
Hardly the end as receipts were backdated 3 months later by mall stall shonks.

The cost of Howard's wrath was $1.1b saving a measly 0.015% -2008 emissions.
Howard's same Solar program is now 5 x cheaper or worth $220,000 in (2007)
Howard / Costello blew-out 80% loss on middle class solar power rebates.
All now know with no Aussie money trail, Howard's quango pumped up Lib coffers.

Pay extra for SHCP system + Solar Hot water package..tbb got one some neither.
Later denied State Solar Hot Water grant because crook docs say we have it!
Not one Oz manufacturer existed in 2008 so shop was gone a week later?
Howard's offshore flock was ramping up prices to to fleece OZ taxpayers.

Howard's vengeful Solar Flare killed more tradies than Rudd's Pink Batts.
Bloke who installed tbb's said very few were tradies of any description.
Coalition George Christensen MP tabled deaths from Solar scheme in Parliament...

Howard screwed Rudd + Oz taxpayers $1b on worst roll-out ever by any Govt.
Howard was also responsible for more trade deaths than Pink Batts scheme
Coward Howard never phoned Tradie's Parents nor faced a Royal Commission.

Wiki: Australia is considered a relative laggard in regards to Solar.
Internationally criticised for providing very little energy from Solar, despite it's vast resources with extensive sunshine and overall high potential.

truebluebasher's picture
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truebluebasher Friday, 6 Dec 2019 at 12:45am

Cheers for being honest's worth checking & sharing.
South East Oz slowing branches out with a world of Private Power brokers!

Big States/Island Govts still pride their Poles & Wires.

Qld 100% Govt Owned > Energy Qld

WA 100% Govt Owned > Western Power

NT 100% Govt Owned > PWC

Tas 100% Govt Owned > Tasnetworks

ACT 80% Govt Owned > AGL > 20% Private link to SA / NSW

NSW 50% Govt Owned > Essential Energy + sold Transmitter.
West / South Sydney are private & link to strategic > ACT > SA > Vic options.

SA 49% Govt Owned > PNED + Transmitter 46.5% State owned

Vic 20% Govt Owned > Ausnet

Note: So many shelf companies that it's hard to confirm who owns what % where.
Qld & WA Govts often boast they own 100% so we can only assume they do.
You'd have to consider Energy deals to & from Mines would power up big states.

+ Now with Bonus late Extra

[ATTENTION] Best ever Oz Energy Guide (Everything in one Booklet)

Makes tbb look stupid! ...Energy Networks Australia (Guide)...That's pretty darn handy!
Who's stupid enough to put something useful on the internet...does yer brain in!
A-Z State by State Prices + list of crooked shelf companies + Overhead/Underground Map

indo-dreaming's picture
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indo-dreaming Tuesday, 3 Dec 2019 at 4:33pm

Hmmm when i was googling it it seemed it was privately owned in pretty much all states? confused?

So why is it all government owned still?

I think your points are too political bias.

I voted for Rudd as i wanted good NBN but now not a fan but the Pink batt thing was a farce it was a good scheme or idea, maybe just not rolled out great.

Howard on the other hand, never voted for him, hated him but in hindsight easily the best PM of our time, hence his long run.

A point that i think you missed is Rudd changing some regulation that use to be about that ensured all energy providers had to provide stability and reliability for instance they couldn't just provide no energy one day a shit load the next and none at night, they had to provide a service where it was consistent amount 24/7

Doing away with this regulation obviously started the renewable ball rolling, but it's now left us with big problems.

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truebluebasher Tuesday, 3 Dec 2019 at 11:57pm

political bias...kinda feel all sheepish, reckon tbb was violated somehow...
Don't fret AEC do prod assured tbb is still a politically biased virgin!

Howard the Coward was never tbb's PM, hence the never ending AEC advances!
Sure you can detect angst, as tbb least respects Mr Howard as a Gentlemen.

Howard killed Aussie Dream with 40% forever cost spike on house construction.
(That alone destroyed tbb's career of 20 years as 90% income loss was tough!
Costello was not tbb's fav' Treasurer as he sacked 100,000's of Oz skill force.
Our most highly valued skills were obliterated by Howard.(Oz now an empty vessel)

Killed Oz Automobile Industry with same Tax whilst imports thrived.
Killed off Rail/Bridge/Road Nation Building with GST - 40% cost blowout.
This basically gave the world a 20 year production jump on self penalised Oz.
Killed of GST anchored manufacturing then bails out his brother.(What's Up!)

As said before Howard's GST Oz built & sold anything you wanted.
After Howard's fail... No Oz -Solar/Cars/Roads/Bridges/Rail/Appliances/Clothes

Patriotic prostitution-get paid to abort > Barcode Babies prior to christening...
Boys name<[$5,000]> Girls name <[$5,000]> It's Name <[$5,000] Dog is Ralph!

Calls in the Army to halt & invade Australia's most daring largest ever Sea Rescue
Denouncing & humiliating Defence, Ship Captains & Rescuers for Political gain.
Again lies about Children Overboard.....(Yes he just stoops lower & lower & lower).

In Australia's name he lies to the world about WOMD to murder millions of kidz.
Middle of own war sabotages coalition of willing to do trade with enemy Dictator.

Admiration of such evil is the very reason 2 million Aussies are shit scared to vote.
If this enemy of Oz & all things good in the world is OZ best PM then none will vote!
AEC must screen out & jail these Oz traitors...maybe then we'll open their invites!
If any sense bias, tbb takes no joy in reply...Simply this man destroyed our nation!
Howard still is the greatest setback to Australia...The damage is done!

tbb often gifts postcards & city emblems to all sided Local pollies.
Not disrespectful to voters & politics in general
tbb's posts don't seek out reams of unreported open corruption.
The very reason Stats are clearly laid out ...
Sick of wasting time wading thru it, to present a half truth.

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AndyM Tuesday, 3 Dec 2019 at 10:42pm

Great post TBB, cannot agree enough.

Howard was the beginning of the real social rot in Australia.

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GuySmiley Wednesday, 4 Dec 2019 at 7:09am

You know solar could be the biggest disruption industry ever especially in the developing world, perhaps I’ll expand on my thoughts later.

Yeah, Howard like the worse piece of sloppy dog shit caught in your ripple sole shoes and refusing to be cleansed. Best not say here what I really think ....

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sypkan Wednesday, 4 Dec 2019 at 12:29pm

solar sure could guysmiley

it already is...

indod cops a lot of shit on here but I appreciate his efforts. one point he's made patently clear on here is the public's willing uptake of renewables. I heard on RN this morning 1 in 5 houses in oz now have solar panels. many more in some areas. this is already a disruptive technology for government to play catch up with

whoever is responsible, the poles and wires model is struggling badly, as is our thinking in how to deal with this

developing countries (and remote oz communities) are by-passing this dilemma by making localised solar and batteries for poor and isolated communities. much like with land line phone infrastructure and mobile phones, developing countries are jumping straight to the new technology empowering millions of people at a minimal input

meanwhile in oz, governments and business either conspire, or complacement themselves into preserving the centralisation of power and all the perks that brings...

allowing people freedom from the grid encourages the realisation that solar power is actually free power, once it's in it just ticks away and does it's thing. no digging, no trucking, no burning, no bill. the current model cannot afford such a mass realisation

hence all the disincentives for off grid battery system set ups

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GuySmiley Wednesday, 4 Dec 2019 at 3:11pm

Solar could be the biggest ever disruption.

The disruption is already happening here with panel take up but with reliance on the existing nation distribution network but imagine a world where that distribution network was avoided or rendered useless by local or neighbourhood or village networks. Power generated and used locally.

I accept its hard to readily imagine this happening in a country like Australia or any other first world country with existing distribution infrastructure but in say a country like India, why not? Look at the way India bypassed western style traditional telephone infrastructure (copper wires we now use for our NBN) and went straight to mobile phone technology / use and say it’s not possible.

To the extent this is far fetched depends on the will of government, do they want power generation and distribution centralised and in the hands of large corporations or do they want it decentralised and in local hands. Equally, people may force the government’s hand with take up of renewables at the current rate. The chances are government will favour a corporate model but in countries like Germany, and I think, also in Holland government encourage local ownership, distribution and use. Even in the UK there are highly successful local examples including the co-generation of power providing power to medium sized cities.

indo-dreaming's picture
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indo-dreaming Wednesday, 4 Dec 2019 at 6:08pm

I agree solar is real well suited to developing countries especially remote areas and smaller islands, where only means of electricity is from diesel generators like In Mentawai's and Telos, i think even Nias might be run by big sets of big diesel generators in various locations.

There is at least one decent sized solar farm in Mentawais on Sipora near Telescopes it's been there for a few years now. (probably more now)

Lot of the locals out in the outer islands were putting in little solar panels years ago just to run a light or two etc, but they were real crap cheap small panels so when ive talked to locals about it they many say there useless, i saw a house use a bit better setup last year successfully though (just lights)

Im sure once prices of decent panels come down more and start getting sold more widely around Indonesia they will really benefit though.

It's a growing area but still not that much places selling systems and a lot are not great quality, as ive been trying to research them for a place over there.

It should suit those smaller villages or just village type houses well as they generally don't have very big energy demands, a few lights, TV, recharging phones, water pump, refrigeration so suits the well.

For those now without 24/7 electricity the real game changer that will come from solar is being able to have refrigeration, currently in communities that rely on the ocean for food, one day you might catch a lot of fish, next few days you might not be able to go fishing due to storms etc.

In the past the only option is to sell what they can or salt fish, but refrigeration will give the option of freezing fish etc

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philosurphizing... Thursday, 5 Dec 2019 at 12:52pm

Rainbow Power Company have a section on their site dedicated to solar technology in third world countries.

In Australia it is estimated to average around $600/km of line to maintain the poles and wires for the electricity grid.

Regarding 12 volt fridges I would recommend the ''Trailblaza'' chest fridges made by a company on the Sunshine Coast called Norcoast Refridgeration
I bought mine about 8 years ago cost me around $2,000.
The gas fridge I was using prior was using 3 gas bottles per year at $120 per bottle equals $360 per year, times 8 years equals $2880.
Including the solar panel I bought at the time, this system has now paid for itself.
I should also mention the fridge uses about 30 amps per day and it's in a cool well insulated mudbrick house, outdoors or used as a freezer would take more power.

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truebluebasher Friday, 6 Dec 2019 at 12:22am

WA (SAPS) Stand Alone Power Systems (Solar/Batteries)
WA are taking Regional Cities off Grid...costs no more, saves on all WA power bills!
Far more reliable for weather beaten remote areas.
(South) Esperance (End of 2019 =17 SAPS)
(North) Exmouth (8 SAPS)

Over next 10 years 15,000 potential WA sites-(SAPS)

NEM East Coast /COAG are much slower waiting for Angus to gather the troops.
COAG is to convene 'at least' twice a year / Energy Minister keeps forgetting.
Too busy with Office Party Money Printer..."Lets see!" One $80m note [Press Print]

25th Nov 2019 COAG track him down in Perth...("All of this for my knighthood!")

indo-dreaming's picture
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indo-dreaming Sunday, 8 Dec 2019 at 5:31pm

Heres another good news story from October this year.

Federal Government hands $1 billion to Clean Energy Finance Corporation to boost power grid reliability$1b-government-funding/11653944


udo's picture
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udo Tuesday, 17 May 2022 at 10:56am
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saltyone Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 11:21am

Has anyone here got an off grid set up? How much did you pay for it?

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velocityjohnno Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 12:16pm

Researching this now saltyone. Got a feeling with upcoming electricity increases, it will pay off an upgrade within 4 years of bills saved - my general rule. Starting with 5Kw of roof solar. Anyone who has upgraded, thoughts appreciated. Which is best? tesla powerwall, lead-acid old tech, anything other?

Did a lot of work around the old telco lead-acid systems very remote, have quite the respect for them.

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indo-dreaming Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 12:40pm

Watch this video before you go out and buy batteries, unless your roof is packed with as many panels as possible you might be better off investing in more panels first, and then being a bit more clever about how you use energy reduce night consumption where possible, like using dishwasher and washing machine during day etc.


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udo Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 1:58pm

Who out there is getting close to 16c KwH feed in ?

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indo-dreaming Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 4:40pm

Yeah it's from 2019 so you have to take that into account it's now closer to 7c-12c

I did see a more recent article not long ago saying similar thing, but no idea where it is so couldn't link it hence why shared video instead.

But the overall concept is still one to consider, pack out your roof as much as possible first with panels.

Plus you would expect panels overall won't get too much better or that much cheaper, while batteries you would expect have more chance of getting better or least coming down a fair bit in price.

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GuySmiley Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 5:26pm
udo wrote:

Who out there is getting close to 16c KwH feed in ?

Not close at 0.66 KwH still getting paid by the power company each quarter!

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velocityjohnno Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 8:24pm

Thanks Indo I'll have a look.
Well done GS - is this an old contract?

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san Guine Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 8:30pm

Got a 9kW system(actually 1x 3kW and 1x6kW with separate inverters), getting 7c/kwh feed-in, also looking at batteries. Can recommend Sunpower panels due to longevity

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velocityjohnno Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 8:30pm

5kW getting 10c here, with famed renewable hydro company

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san Guine Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 8:43pm

Also don't underestimate insulation and draft exclusion, highly recommend retro fitting with double glazing (expensive initial outlay, but in the long game a winner)...oh and straw bales for construction

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saltyone Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 9:00pm

Velocity Johnno - yep that’s what I’ve been wondering too .. with increasing elec costs it could pay for itself..
but . Not sure .

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saltyone Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 9:05pm

Indo , yeah I’m wondering if better to get more panels . I run currently a 2kw system ( 8 panels) but my bills have doubled in last year. Electrician told me not worth going off grid but get more panels . My concern is that prices continue to fluctuate and they can pretty much do what they want and who knows if in long run even with more panels bills still hike

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saltyone Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 9:07pm

Sun power panels sound good think I heard of them . I have zen system has been pretty good so far

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udo Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 9:23pm

What do reckon Southey ? 40yr warranty - The Fineprint would be a read..he he

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velocityjohnno Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 9:39pm

Yep SanGuine, working on double glazing as we go, & all extra
Saltyone - our case, we used to have electric water 300L or so, no solar - I watched bills creep up some years ago and costed a 5kw system, and gas, figured if it payed out in 4 years of savings worth doing... Reduced bill to 1/4 of what it was and gas bill was minimal. System paid itself off in savings. Now elec bill has crept up to be nearing what it used to be, so I'll look to see if a battery setup could pay itself off in this time. Not all battery systems are the same, either - I remember reading article after wild weather NE of Melbourne comparing 3 families with different battery systems and how they fared. Newfangled system was down within 2 days, best resilience was someone with a full ex-Telco battery system, that did the week without grid power no worries...

With the gas, will look at replacing big unit for on demand - anyone know the efficiency gain?

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GuySmiley Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 10:11pm
san Guine wrote:

Also don't underestimate insulation and draft exclusion, highly recommend retro fitting with double glazing (expensive initial outlay, but in the long game a winner)...oh and straw bales for construction

Yes old 15 yr guaranteed feed in tariff

Re: draft proofing be careful can lead to damp and mould issues if you stop all drafts

Suggest first step is low powered lighting and appliances before solar, our ave daily power use over the year is 4.5 KwH

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san Guine Saturday, 4 Jun 2022 at 10:28pm

Good point GS,
We have minimised the damp problem by also installing an HRV system and on another note changed our evacuated tubes (gas boosted solar hot water system) to a Sanden heat pump system. All this is expensive but we aren't moving from this house so its pays off in the long term.
Addit: Be very careful with inverters, do you homework and pay a bit more and from our experience checkout the warranty before you buy

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philosurphizing... Sunday, 5 Jun 2022 at 10:51am

Ever wondered what is inside one of those Tesla powerwalls.
Lots of small replaceable 18650 lithium batteries.
Here is a vid showing how to build one using second hand batteries.
Check out how the fusing system works.

On my off grid system I currently have 6 by 2 volt gell cell batteries 12 volts 600 AH
Previously I had 2 6volt Rolls brand lead acid 600 AH and one of the cells went after 8 years of usage and I had to replace both batteries, whereas if one of the 2 volt gell cells stuffs up I can replace it and keep using the other 5.

If I ever get an electric car I reckon I would source lots of second hand 18650 lithium batteries and build a charger like in the vid.
Once the batteries for the house are fully charged switch over to charging the car.

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saltyone Sunday, 5 Jun 2022 at 1:27pm

Hmm that sun power set up looks interesting .. 40 year warranty on panels sounds pretty good. Wonder if you can hook them up to batteries later?
My panels are currently 250 watts each (x8) . If adding more to set up can you use 400 watt panels (eg to shed) and connect to current inverter n panels or do they have to be same wattage?? I think a 4 or 5 kw system would be plenty . 2kw has been fine up until now - bills were originally about $50 a quarter but now roughly $200!

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saltyone Sunday, 5 Jun 2022 at 1:32pm

Vj - ex telco- is telco the brand ?

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saltyone Sunday, 5 Jun 2022 at 1:35pm

Philosophizing- how many kw system does your battery set up provide ? How many panels have you got?
I like the build your own concept. Tesla so expensive gotta be a cheaper way

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san Guine Sunday, 5 Jun 2022 at 1:38pm

Batteries can always be retrofitted, but talk to a reputable electrician about setup.
Also the size of the inverter is important and needs to match the capacity of the panels.
We have a Fronius inverter on the Sunpower setup and an older Sunnyboy inverter on the original BP panels. The Sunnyboy decided to die a couple of years ago 9 1/2 years into a 10 year warranty and was replaced by BP solar without a problem

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saltyone Sunday, 5 Jun 2022 at 1:49pm

Cheers sanguine yep I’ll chat to a sparky see what they say too. My zen set up 10 years old hope it keeps going a bit longer !

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udo Sunday, 5 Jun 2022 at 2:22pm

Salty your set up could be close to its use by Date
your panel output would be way down get a Sparky to check them out
Tech has come a farkn long way in 10 yrs
The Panels with the 40yr [pfft] Warranty....each panel is fitted with its own inverter
How much per year / Bill do you blokes pay for Supply Charge ?