Jump to content

New to solar and advise needed


Recommended Posts

Hi all,

I have recently got a new house in Cape Town.  Had a very old geyser in the roof and got quotes on solar geysers (flatplate, tubes and  PV).  The thermal heating is about 22k and the PV is 35k.  Im thinking of going PV just because I would like to have more solar power in the house in the future. We are currently using about R1500 worth of electricity per month.  I know the initial cost of setting up solar power and batteries is very expensive! Is it worth it in the long term, does it pay itself off? And on average how long does it take to pay off? What maintenance is required to keep it going? (batteries / panels needed to be replaced)

I also run some semi-heavy machines (including a 6.6kW, 1 ph oven). If we go solar with battery is it possible to set it up so that the machinery doesn't draw power from the batteries? - would that be a smart idea to separate it?

Sorry for all the questions, i am totally new to this.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

22 minutes ago, Terminal3k said:

Im thinking of going PV just because I would like to have more solar power in the house in the future

The PV geyser is seperate from the any PV you have normally with an inverter. PV is still a good option, but you cannot run the house and the geyser from the same panels. You would be able to make your own system to do something like this, but there is nothing you can buy that does this for you. For me the beauty of PV solar is that you can easily retrofit this yourself to an existing geyser without needing plumbing work done.

 

25 minutes ago, Terminal3k said:

Is it worth it in the long term

It is worth it. How much depends on you. How much want to adjust, or not and what you want to get out of the system. The duration of payment also depend heavily on which systems, which batteries, your usage and adjustment in usage (or not), location and weather conditions. 

 

28 minutes ago, Terminal3k said:

would that be a smart idea to separate it

It's a very good idea. Stove, oven, normal geysers and heavy machines will deplete your batteries very fast and require a huge amount of panels to be installed with a very large inverter (or 3). 

 

My suggestion would be to set yourself a goal of what you want to achieve. (reduce the bill, cover loadshedding, going completely off-grid). Try to get the smallest setup to achieve your goal. And then the most difficult: Try and stick to that goal.

Batteries are one of the most expensive components and has a limited duration before they need to be replaced. If you only need lights and a TV/internet for loadshedding, then they to get a battery to achieve that, and spec the rest to use the available sunlight from the panels without the need for a battery. This should save you to most money.

About repayment: You can work on about 5hours sun during each day. If you have a solar array that produce 1kW, that will give your 5kW. With electricity prices about R2/kW that would be a saving of R10/day or R300/month (depending on the weather). Now device your cost for a 1kW system by R300 and you have a rough idea of the payback duration. Scale up as needed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

58 minutes ago, Louisvdw said:

The PV geyser is seperate from the any PV you have normally with an inverter. PV is still a good option, but you cannot run the house and the geyser from the same panels. You would be able to make your own system to do something like this, but there is nothing you can buy that does this for you. For me the beauty of PV solar is that you can easily retrofit this yourself to an existing geyser without needing plumbing work done.

Thanks for the in depth reply.

The guy that quoted me on the PV system said: "NOTE THUS SYSTEM CAN BE INSTALLED TO EXISTING GEYSERS AND CAN BE USED TO HEAT WATER AND GENERATE POWER TO THE HOME WHEN CONNECTED TO AN INVERTERS ETC" - based on this i was assuming it is a standard thing to use the geyser panels to charge batteries once the water is hot enough?  our current geyser is VERY old and needs to be replaced, so I will be needing a new geyser.  The cost of the PV geyser is about R13 000 more, im wondering if its worth the extra cost?

1 hour ago, Louisvdw said:

My suggestion would be to set yourself a goal of what you want to achieve. (reduce the bill, cover loadshedding, going completely off-grid). Try to get the smallest setup to achieve your goal. And then the most difficult: Try and stick to that goal.

My goal would be to reduce cost of electricity and hopefully make up the cost for the solar system after some years.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

17 minutes ago, Tariq said:

i am using pv from the panels to power my standard electric Kwikcot geyser, use a timer as to when the geyser switches on and off, not sure about the pv geyser costing R13k 

The cost of the PV was R13 000 more than the thermal - PV R35 000 in total with 4 300W panels 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, Tariq said:

so, does that mean the R35,000 includes the inverter, batteries, all the wiring, fuses, etc, etc ??

I dont think so. This is what is included:

200Lt PTC System NO geyser

PV Panels 300 Watt *4: I-elements *1:Connectors :Flange*1 :S/S
sensor Tube *1:12V battery 4AH*1 Bat connetor cable : MPPT
controller*1: ECO Geyser wise :dual element connect cable
6mm M-F Cable Black:6mm M-F Cable RED:2x 2m solar strut
Mounting Clips
NOTE THUS SYSTEM CAN BE INSTALLED TO EXISTING GEYSERS
AND CAN BE USED TO HEAT WATER AND GENERATE POWER TO
THE HOME WHEN CONNECTED TO AN INVERTERS ETC

1.00 Ea Solar Geyser insulation 80MM

5 year warranty

1.00 Ea Additional bracket set

Bracket for geyser outdoor installation

1.00 Ea Geyser Installation
Geyser Installation

2.00 Length Copper Pipe 22mm
Length 5,5m

1.00 Ea PTC Installation

Install geyserwise PTC System Panels and controllers

 

I assume if i want to get more PV panels and batteries i would need inverter, batteries, db board ect....

Edited by Terminal3k
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, Terminal3k said:

We are currently using about R1500 worth of electricity per month.

Currently it seems you are using about 640 KWH per month. If the largest portion of your bill is from your geyser, it would probably be most cost effective to reduce that portion by installing a solar geyser something like  a flat plate retrofit or a EV tube system that will only need electrical top-up on cold days. That will then leave you with a smaller monthly KWH usage  that will not be easy to justify with a inverter. Just my thought.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Im just wondering what is going to be the better solution for me.

Go for 4x 300w panels and possibly link these panels to an inverter / batteries later on? (R35 000) - will 1200w be enough to power a 200l geyser?

or flatplate thermal (R22 000) 200l

or tubes thermal (R24 000) 200l

apparently the PV system lasts longer and is more reliable because it doesnt use a pump and the panels last longer than thermal...?

Edited by Terminal3k
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The PV is a good option. It has less maintenance compared to pumps and pipes. Just make sure you get a good deal. You can compare the prices against some other sources like https://ecodepot.co.za/search?type=product&q=PV+geyser

You could even source your own solar panels as well. https://artsolar.net/modules/

Then it is just the installation costs that you need to check. 

Edited by Louisvdw
Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, Terminal3k said:

I also run some semi-heavy machines (including a 6.6kW, 1 ph oven). If we go solar with battery is it possible to set it up so that the machinery doesn't draw power from the batteries? - would that be a smart idea to separate it?

That oven will increase the cost drastically if you want it on solar, it might be better to keep it on utility only as you can then install a smaller system for the basic needs only. It will mean splitting your DB but this is done anyway in most cases.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, Terminal3k said:

Hi all,

I have recently got a new house in Cape Town.  Had a very old geyser in the roof and got quotes on solar geysers (flatplate, tubes and  PV).  The thermal heating is about 22k and the PV is 35k.  Im thinking of going PV just because I would like to have more solar power in the house in the future. We are currently using about R1500 worth of electricity per month.  I know the initial cost of setting up solar power and batteries is very expensive! Is it worth it in the long term, does it pay itself off? And on average how long does it take to pay off? What maintenance is required to keep it going? (batteries / panels needed to be replaced)

I also run some semi-heavy machines (including a 6.6kW, 1 ph oven). If we go solar with battery is it possible to set it up so that the machinery doesn't draw power from the batteries? - would that be a smart idea to separate it?

Sorry for all the questions, i am totally new to this.

 

Give the Powerforum-store a call or drop them a mail they are really helpfull and explain everything in detail!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, Vassen said:

if you do go solar geyser, go as big as possible. 

If your looking at ev tube type here is my experience, I installed a 200Ltr evacuated tube geyser last year just before winter, last winter was not so cold and I  hardly needed the electric element for extra top-up heat but this winter was a different story i had to switch the element on at least a half hour on most cold days, but saying that we are four people in the house and my youngster loves to shower and can sometimes forget to get out leaving the next person with a slight colder shower. I did my own installation for just under R15K and left my old geyser untouched as a spare backup unit, I would think about R10K installation would be reasonable on top of the R15K on material, anything more you should get more quotes if you go ev tubes.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...