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Old 03-03-2012, 09:01 AM   #31
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

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Very, very cool! Thanks for all the info; even though it's still a little pricey on the initial outlay, a three-year horizon to recoup your investment is nothing almost.

What part of the country are you in? You mentioned that the state and local folks along with the installer worked very well together. It sounds like they have it pretty well figured out. I was just wondering where these enlightened folks are.
Our company is located in Suffolk County, Long Island, NY. My impression is the wheel hub is at the federal level. They supply the lion's share of the incentive. The outlay is sizable. For us the timing was right. It's something that I wanted to do for years, but till now the comfort level wasn't there. I do think if you have a healthy company, and have resources to reinvest, the returns, over time, are great. Plus, as we own the building, it's not a bad equity builder
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Old 03-03-2012, 09:25 AM   #32
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

You mentioned that the power is banked and you get credit when they need it. So how is the power banked? Do you mean it is stored?
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Old 03-03-2012, 09:36 AM   #33
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You mentioned that the power is banked and you get credit when they need it. So how is the power banked? Do you mean it is stored?
Actually, it goes into the grid, and that amount is subtracted from what I use. So, instead of selling it to the local power company at a discount, I receive full value on my end for the power generated
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Old 03-04-2012, 07:36 AM   #34
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

What happens when a storm knocks out power to your area, and the utility workers need to repair the broken transformers? Do you get notified to stop banking power to the grid to prevent killing the utility workers? How does the shutoff work?

BTW, thanks for sharing the info and pictures.
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Old 03-04-2012, 09:13 AM   #35
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

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What happens when a storm knocks out power to your area, and the utility workers need to repair the broken transformers? Do you get notified to stop banking power to the grid to prevent killing the utility workers? How does the shutoff work?

BTW, thanks for sharing the info and pictures.
Good Q there. I would assume there is some sort of transfer switch,
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Old 03-04-2012, 09:23 AM   #36
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

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What happens when a storm knocks out power to your area, and the utility workers need to repair the broken transformers? Do you get notified to stop banking power to the grid to prevent killing the utility workers? How does the shutoff work?

BTW, thanks for sharing the info and pictures.
Hmmm, can't say I know what would happen in that scenario. As far as the shutoff, it's easy, one button on/off on the outside of the converter.
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Old 03-04-2012, 09:54 AM   #37
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

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Hmmm, can't say I know what would happen in that scenario. As far as the shutoff, it's easy, one button on/off on the outside of the converter.
I'm not 100% sure, and as you know I've seen and worked in your MDP (main distribution panel)

Your solar system is "smart" it will not back feed power into the grid without power coming off the grid. There is no way that the solar install would have been installed any other way. Unless you used some cheap fly by night company to install it.

CNC machine wiring ? Sure, fly by night companies are ok for that.
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Old 03-05-2012, 10:14 AM   #38
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Unhappy Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

Appropriately, the discussion of the "rebates" and incentives should include the fact that the money comes from funds that "we" have borrowed.

So, the fact that some folks can install such systems only makes it more difficult for the rest of us to afford to install them. It's a downward spiral that I wish I knew how to handle.
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Old 03-05-2012, 11:49 AM   #39
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

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I'm not 100% sure, and as you know I've seen and worked in your MDP (main distribution panel)

Your solar system is "smart" it will not back feed power into the grid without power coming off the grid. There is no way that the solar install would have been installed any other way. Unless you used some cheap fly by night company to install it.

CNC machine wiring ? Sure, fly by night companies are ok for that.
Ok, thanks for clearing that up, Ken The installers were contracted by the local power company. To my eyes, they did a fine job.
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Old 03-05-2012, 12:02 PM   #40
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

The local utility here requires an outside disconnect installed and notification to them that you have PV's. That way, they can come flip the disconnect, assuring no backfeeding of lines during a event like lines down or transformer work. This is beyond the " Smart" system internal switching like Ellis's system has- I know I am saying that wrong, but Ken can correct me LOL
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Old 03-05-2012, 12:21 PM   #41
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

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The local utility here requires an outside disconnect installed and notification to them that you have PV's. That way, they can come flip the disconnect, assuring no backfeeding of lines during a event like lines down or transformer work. This is beyond the " Smart" system internal switching like Ellis's system has- I know I am saying that wrong, but Ken can correct me LOL
I'm not correcting you, cause I'm not 100% sure.

My guess is that there is a auto transfer switch that is fed from the outside power company feeds. And once the power goes off from that source, it either shuts down the solar system completely or won't allow the system to back feed out to the power lines.

If Ellis was given a company by the power co, I'm sure they did everything 100% rite. Which was most likely inspected by a PC engineer .

Ellis, were permits required for this project ? And if so was it inspected by a city, county or state inspector ?
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Old 03-05-2012, 12:35 PM   #42
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

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Ellis, were permits required for this project ? And if so was it inspected by a city, county or state inspector ?
Yes, and yes.

Also, there is an outside disconnect, as Brian mentioned.
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Old 03-06-2012, 06:27 PM   #43
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

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OK, here is one for you... That 20% loss... does that go away as heat??
Inverters made for grid-tie setups have to make almost perfect sine-wave current. Any that I know of are rated 91%-96% efficient - i.e. there's 4%-9% loss that goes to heat. My house and farm are 100% on solar with twin Outback inverters.

I have no idea why this guy's system is supposed to have 20% loss. That's something I've never heard of. I've got three places on solar. Two have Outback inverters and the other an Xantrex/Trace inverter. 92%, 92% and 95% efficient.

In regard to power outages - the grid-tie inverters are required to be unable to work when they don't sense grid power. So, when the grid is down so is the solar power which seems a bit silly if someone buys it to be "prepared" and not dependent on the grid. The system at my house is custom designed with grid-tie and a backup battery bank. I can make it work when grid power is down.
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Old 03-06-2012, 06:37 PM   #44
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

Nice install. I am only 19, but I worked as a helper at the local IBEW Union Hall on a solar project this past summer before college started. This is a picture looking from the middle of the roof towards one of the ends of the building. The building was the size of 13 football fields. It was very labor intensive, especially because it was over 160 degrees on the roof for over 4 weeks straight. It was hot enough to fry an egg on the tar. If you stood in one spot without moving your feet for more than 2 minutes it started to melt the bottom of our boots. The panels we installed were connected by the same aluminum sub frame you used. Also this is only 1 of the 3 buildings we did at the industrial park.

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Old 04-06-2012, 09:18 AM   #45
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Default Re: Installing 50K Solar at my Business

That's a lot of panels right there ^^^ CRE1992. Nice layout on them too.
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