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The Retirement Thread

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22 Nov
5:18pm, 22 Nov 2021
2302 posts
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Flatlander
Hann, 16 panels! That will stop moss growing on most of your roof! ;-)
You could well be generating about 7kW which with a battery should make you virtually electrically self sufficient.

Above when I mentioned the cost of a battery I was working on the premise that you were getting 8 panels. For 16 panels you would need a larger capacity battery which could cost £4,000+ greenmatch.co.uk Note, my quote for a 4.8kWh battery with a 3.4kW system is £1,790 which is much less than the figures shown in the greenmatch link, so I would hope your battery would also cost less than greenwatch shows.

Again, watch out for limits on how much you can export to the grid.

Be aware that if you keep a contract with an electrical supplier you will still pay a standing charge even if you use no electricity from them. To receive Smart Export Guarantee payments one has to sign up for a SEG tariff with a company, but I am not clear if that means you have to also take an electrical supply contract from them or whether you can just export.
22 Nov
5:20pm, 22 Nov 2021
2303 posts
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Flatlander
LullayDaisy if you are not going to be at your seaside house full time, you will need to think carefully. If you are absent for long periods and it is not let out, solar panels might not be worth it. If nearly all of your PV generation is exported, the SEG payments (if available) are unlikely to contribute that much to the cost of installation.

My 10 years old 8 panels 1.92kW system generates about 1,700kW a year of which half is deemed to be exported, which with a FiT gives me about £900 a year that includes generation payments as well as export payments.

If I were receiving SEG payments of about 5p/kW exported (rates vary depending upon which electrical company is used), I would receive only about £40 a year. A modern 8 panels system generating 3.4Kw (more efficient panels) that payment would increase to perhaps £70. With SEG there is no generation payment as with FiT. solarpanelprices.co.uk

If the house is unused for long periods, batteries may not be advantageous since they would be able to store only a small percentage of the kW generated, the excess would be exported.

These days most of the advantage of buying domestic solar panels comes from the reduced electrical bills.
22 Nov
6:00pm, 22 Nov 2021
82343 posts
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Hanneke
Useful link Rosehip and more good info Flattie :)

I am realising that actually, with a bit of back luck, I won't earn those panels back... Although you cannot put into the calculator having both East and West facing panels! No shading, so from sunrise to sunset, it will be generating...

Anyway, I cannot afford it for another couple of years but good to focus my mind!
22 Nov
6:04pm, 22 Nov 2021
23164 posts
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Rosehip
You can do the calculator twice though Hann.

For me, despite a large-ish SSW facing roof it’s not exactly a get rich scheme but should eventually pay back more than it costs. Need to speak to an estate agent about house price value as well at some point and cost an electric boiler.
22 Nov
6:12pm, 22 Nov 2021
82346 posts
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Hanneke
I am having an electric system put into the new building, which is my "herb building". I also heat the greenhouse electrically and the water in the house. Central heating is by oil...
I think I would really benefit generating my own power and suspect the calculation is off...
My friend's OH works in off grid systems and said the other day that, by exception, they would put a grid/off grid system in for me. My project is also a bit smaller than usual for them. They power whole islands etc in remote parts of the UK...
He said, roughly, I would play even, i.e. it would earn itself back without costing anything and worth doing to get rid of the oil fired central heating as well... I think I have a relatively high bill, which is only going to get higher once I start using my building as I will be working from it, so consuming 7 days a week! Taking into account rising cost of electricity AND the planet, I am 95% certain I will invest in it...
22 Nov
6:23pm, 22 Nov 2021
401 posts
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Fields
The Smart Islands project in the Isles of Scilly may interest you Hanneke - perhaps your friends OH is aware or even involved.
22 Nov
6:29pm, 22 Nov 2021
34687 posts
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LazyDaisy
Thanks Flatlander, that's interesting additional info. We don't let the house, and I'd say (barring lockdowns!) it's unusual for us to be absent for more than a fortnight at a time, but it sounds as if financially it would probably ot be worth it. Though it would still be a renewable source of some energy, so that should be added into the equation. More pondering needed!
22 Nov
7:40pm, 22 Nov 2021
2304 posts
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Flatlander
Hann, if going heavily solar means you can get rid of oil fired central heating, that will surely reduce your heating bills by a large amount as well as being "environmentally friendly", especially if you can have as large a battery as is suitable for your system. After the initial capital outlay, you may well be able to drastically reduce your outgoings to well within your income. :-)

If you get rid of your oil fired central heating, you'll need to consider the winter when your electrical consumption will be at its greatest and the PV kW generation will be at its lowest and most variable. You may want to keep a National Grid electrical supply for those periods of no sun when you are producing no electricity and your battery is depleted. That is where your friend's OH should be very helpful in designing a system for you.

Disclaimer: I hope you and others realise that although I was a scientist, I was a microbiologist not an expert in PV renewable energy. All that I have written is from my own experiences and researches of my 10 years old system, and currently getting a quote for, and researching, a second system. Others may have different experiences and views.
22 Nov
7:43pm, 22 Nov 2021
2305 posts
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Flatlander
LullayDaisy I think you may have a lot of calculations to do ;-)
With absences of no more than 2 weeks, I would think you would get more benefit than if you were away for a month ort more each time.

If it helps, my current quote for an 8 panels additional system maximally generating 3.4kW is nearly £4,700 plus £1,790 for the battery.

P.S. see my disclaimer in my previous post 2304.

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About This Thread

Maintained by stilldreaming
Or "something for the old half dead to worry about", as TROSaracen would say 😉 And, "it looks like it's a lot more complicated than I thought," B Rubble :-)

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