Discussion in 'Off Grid Living' started by TnAndy, Jun 21, 2013.
Continuing to add to our solar power system, just completed the last 10 panels I intend to put on it. Last month, before this install, we reached the point we bought no power from the power company for the first time, and actually ran the meter back 3 kw/hrs for the whole month. Our solar production was 990kw/hrs. With this latest addition, we should never buy again, even in the lower production months of the winter.
This addition is a ground mounted extension of the last 10, mounted at a steeper angle ( 50 degrees ) to improve winter production over summer. These 10, and the previous 10, I used the Enphase microinverters, tied directly to the grid, total of 5100 watts for the 20. I also have 6,000w of battery based panels in a separate grid tied, battery backup system, for a total of 11kw combined.
Panels used in this extension were LG 255w with M215 Enphase inverters.
Watching the production of the previous 10, I'd notice peak days of 16-17kw/hrs, whereas now, the best is down in the 13 range....so the steeper angle does produce better in winter, even with shorter days.
My public website for the Enphase portion of my system is:
Enphase Energy - Enlighten | TnAndy
Coming before too long, I plan to add the other 30 panels on the battery based system into the above site. Enphase sells a power meter and a wireless 'stick' that communicates between the meter and the Envoy system ( which is their internet com deal ). I have the meter and stick, and will be wiring it in to report ALL my production to the website.
(the software here to insert photos is quite screwy....sorry for the double post, but I can't seem to get rid of it )
View attachment 12424
View attachment 12424
Just call Andy, TnEdison...
Holy crap, you got enough panels there to run full steam with no hits at all! Just imagine the savings if you went all LED lighting!
Most of my lighting is LED.
When we remodeled the kitchen, for example, I changed ceiling lights from three 2 tube 4' florescent lights (total 240w) to 8 recessed (pot)(Cree LR6) lights at 10.5w each (total 84w) that actually put out more, and far better, light. Also, under mount cabinet lighting is LED as well. Lamps around the house, I've switched out to LED bulbs.
Also appliances: Fridge went from a 90's model 22cuft side-by-side that used 1200kw/hrs/yr to a 25cuft french door type that uses 600. In counter electric stove we changed to propane. Water heater I changed to propane years ago after a couple of multi-week power outages. Our heat is wood with propane backup. Have one small "mini-split" ( ductless ) AC unit that we use infrequently depending on the summer. ( Main cooling is a whole house fan that sucks in cool mtn air at night, and REALLY good insulation...10" thick walls..... that keeps the house temperate )
Our biggest energy 'hogs' are 4 freezers we run at max....cutting back to 3 or 2 as we eat out the summer produce or meat from a beef/hog....and my wood working shop.
Pic of kitchen, ( home made cabinets, BTW ) showing some of the lighting:
Your set up is outstanding!
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