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My business grid-tie Installation


Gerald_db
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After looking at my pharmacies growing electicity bill and cost of diesel for our standby generator I knew I had to do something. A good friend of mine had recently opened a game lodge and gone full solar and assured me that solar had come of age and was cost effective in the medium term.

 

I first changed 120 x 4ft fluorescent tubes to 16w led tubes as well as changing 20 x 50w down lights to 6w led. I put a time clock on my external signs as well as a light switch and ran them from 6pm to 10pm only.

 

As my business only operates from 8am to 5pm a battery free grid-tie system was the obvious choice. I decided to install a larger inverter than needed initially so that I have capacity for expansion.

 

Phase one installation was as follows:-

1 x Socomec Sunsys B20 three phase 21kva grid-tie inverter

45 x 250 watt panel array

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post-913-0-15180800-1445506469_thumb.jpg

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  • 2 weeks later...

Yes, protect the panels but more importantly, check that they are insured for theft and / or damage like storm, hail etc. 

Not all insurance policies may cover it under the building's insurance.

And the there could be a question of legality of the installation, when it comes to paying out a claim.

 

Ps. No, I am not a broker but I do know these installations are expensive and not the norm on policies as i.e. bursting geysers.  :D

They may attract a additional premium / excess.

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  • 7 months later...
On 2015/10/22 at 11:38 AM, Gerald_db said:

Phase one installation was as follows:-

1 x Socomec Sunsys B20 three phase 21kva grid-tie inverter

45 x 250 watt panel array

2015-07-29 09.19.30a.jpg

2015-07-29 09.20.26a.jpg

Have you managed to calculate the cost savings on this install.  Been almost a year now and you should be really enjoying it... I see you are top of the list for efficiency most days in the PVO Southern Africa group!!

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Hi Mark. Total generation from 1st August 2015 until 31st May 2016 (10 months) = 14.515mWh. Our cost for commercial 3 phase power in this town is currently R1.55/kWh. Total savings thus far till 31 May =  R22498  for 10 months ie R2250 monthly. The latest eskom increase will take that to around R1.77/kWh in the next few months. What I have found since monitoring with an Efergy is that the inverter has an on-grid power consumption of 850W and a off-grid consumption of 140W. It is a 21 kVa unit that is only running at 55% of its capacity hence a fairly high percentage of self-consumption (I guess also as it is 3 phase). I am in the process of adding another 15 x 255 panels to bring it up to 60 x 255 watt. A cheap option as I spent the bucks for the big inverter initially. The conversion of my business to 100% led tubes was the best money I spent however saving 1200kWh (R1800.00) monthly for a spend of only around R35k inc vat. Hope that helps.

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Daytime winter useage covered but nights not. Summer with aircons only 33%. However both the nearly cold led tubes and the shading of the array on the roof has halved there amount of aircon I need. Normally in summer would need 4 or 5 x 60000btu splits running. Now never more than 3 and we have had a scary summer. These winter days are using none just extractors hence big unexpected savings there.

Sent from my SM-G920F using Tapatalk

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  • 3 months later...

Hi Gerald

Very interested in your setup - so by grid-tie you mean feeding back into grid or not? We are thinking of doing this on my Dad's farm and if one can feed back into grid it makes a lot of sense otherwise not really at all.. I only have experience with off grid setups really...

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  • 7 months later...

Records can be good and bad. Sunday last, 14th May, Eshowe experienced huge storms including 141mm of rain. And a first for my business system, the 60 panels created zero generation. First time in nearly 2 years.

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