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Can I arrange for my clients finance on Solar?


Jan Breet
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  • 2 weeks later...

As I recall (this is what I heard from an installer), if you can get the loan at home loan rates (or if you have spare money in the home loan to use for this), you break about even as the cost of electricity is close to the interest on the bond. That was for grid-tied systems. I doubt anybody will give you home loan rates on this though. On the other hand, electricity does have this evil way of going up 12% or more each year... short answer, I don't know, but there might be a chance...

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I decided to do my install due to the inconvenience of load shedding.

Inverter feeds all lights and dedicated circuits for pc, TV and Amp, average load during sunshine = 200W

Inverter 3Kva = R4000

Batteries 105Ah x 2 = R3500

PV panels 255W x 2 = R3200

Materials = R2000

Total = R12700

I estimate recovering cost over 6 to 8 years @ R1.76 / Kwh with 10% increase / year.

Not including replacement of batteries when required.

 

Reckon it's only worth while going completely off grid, whether contemplating a loan or not.

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I decided to do my install due to the inconvenience of load shedding.

Inverter feeds all lights and dedicated circuits for pc, TV and Amp, average load during sunshine = 200W

Inverter 3Kva = R4000

Batteries 105Ah x 2 = R3500

PV panels 255W x 2 = R3200

Materials = R2000

Total = R12700

I estimate recovering cost over 6 to 8 years @ R1.76 / Kwh with 10% increase / year.

Not including replacement of batteries when required.

 

Reckon it's only worth while going completely off grid, whether contemplating a loan or not.

 

I did something similar, except I bought a much better inverter. 4k for a 3kva inverter... that shouts Modified Sine Wave :-) I spent 3 times the money for half the capacity, 12k on a Multiplus Compact 1600, roughly:

 

1 x Victron Multiplus Compact 1600 @ R12000 (it's about 15.5 now).

1 x Microcare 40A MPPT charge controller @ R4500 (since replaced)

2 x 100Ah batteries @ R3200

2 x 150W 12V panels @ R 3600

Cabling, steel for the frames... total tag was around 25k in 2013.

The math suggested that I would never get my money back. I didn't care, I bought it with the sole purpose of powering my home office during load shedding. At a software developer's hourly rate, it has already paid for itself.

 

Since then, I've replaced the battery bank, the MPPT broke and I replaced it, and I bought more solar modules, so I'm up to 900W now.

 

I've since realised that the batteries really do make or break it. Those cheap 105Ah batteries... they can maybe do 500 cycles to 50%. So...

 

500*0.5*105*24 (cycles times DoD times Ah times voltage) = 630kwh over the lifetime of the battery. And it costs R3500, so R5.55 per stored kwh. I can buy it from CoCT at half that (heck, I can almost run a generator at that price :-) ).

I managed to find a cheap ex-UPS AGM battery bank that will get me through the next year or two. So my system do actually save me a LITTLE money... but it's never going to give me back what I spent. Which is okay... because that was never the point :-)

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