Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting

dsp3930dsp3930 Posts: 66Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
I need to collect the kwh generated by my inverter ( Xantrex 6048 ) and delivered to my sub-panel (Load/L1/L2) and main-panel (AC1/L1/L2). The overall generation number is to be provided to my power provider 1x per year to pay out my REC credits. (It is an "on your honour number" with a signature guarantee you will give accurate numbers.) My kwh meter outside runs forward and reverse, but is a "dumb" meter. It provides no other information.

I'm contemplating using two EKM meters (Model EKM-25EDS-N v.2) to track this data. They seem to be a fairly reasonable price and the capabilty for reporting and tracking via their EKM Software and EKM iSerial to TCP/IP converter.

Has anyone else used these from EKM? Any other recomendations?
(I need kwh and reverse kwh at a minumum.)

Comments

  • mike95490mike95490 Posts: 6,524Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting

    Does the 6048 not have total KWh reporting ?
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • dsp3930dsp3930 Posts: 66Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting

    Amazingly enough ... no it does not. You can only get the kwh produced per day/month/life from from the MPPT controller LCD. It shows total kwh produced, but not output on AC1/Load, reverse totals, etc. Xantrex sells a communications gateway seperately for about $500, but it uses a Yahoo! widget and from reviews here and elsewhere, it seems to have been panned pretty soundly. The EKMs meters look like they would be more standard to me also. A true kwh meter with lcd and tcp/ip capabilty for 120/240.

    Ballpark pricing is about $500 for two including 4 solid core CTs, 2 enclosures, and one iSerial TCP/IP converter.
  • BB.BB. Posts: 25,261Super Moderators admin
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting

    Or just hook up a surplus Utility meter "backwards" -- it should log the power nicely. They are not very expensive and the Utility should be happy you are using a utility approved meter.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • solarvicsolarvic Posts: 954Solar Expert
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting

    What? Does each utility co do thier meters. In WesternPa. we have First Energy whom put a dual meter that regesters the power generated and power used. They furnished the meter and do the meter reading. I don,t particularly like thier policy as they settle every month and you can,t build up any credit in the summer that you can get back in the winter. I do have a regular utility meter at my inverters to keep track of my use. I got my meter from a online solar sipply for about 35 dollars. Will your utility co. accept that? Solar Vic
  • dsp3930dsp3930 Posts: 66Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting

    I live in NW Ohio ... also with First Energy through Toledo Edison. They don't supply a new meter ... you fill out a few forms, they signoff that your setup is conformant to their requirements, you get an NEC code inspection, submit another agreement, and then your're on net metering. Then, thats pretty much it.

    For Toledo Edison (possible FE Ohio) net metering it is all carried over from month to month and then settled with a payment at the end of the year (if requested by the customer).

    I am looking at getting the EKM meters for the new First Energy REC credit program (possibly also in PA). Try looking on Google under "First Energy REC Program Pennsylvania". This year in Ohio, they are paying between over $300 per MegaWatt hour produced. (Adjusted yearly) You have to get PUCO certified for small generation and as part of that process, you have to be able to tell them the kwh you generated each year. (My house meter we have is only usefuly for net metering -- its an older dial meter.) For under a 6kw nameplate inverter capactity, you just have to update them with your total kwh generated each year from a kwh metering system you install (or already have as part of your inverter). They, then cut a check for the amt. 1x per year. This is the process as I have been explained to me by the FE REC program contact. We'll see once I get it all in place.

    What's the catch? You can only claim up the the amount of power you use in home each year as a REC credit. IE. If you use 9,000 kwh per year, then that is 9 REC credits. You can't produce 20,000, use only 10,000 and claim 20 REC credits. Also, the dollar amount listed above is only for Solar. Wind is supposedly about 1/10 of the credit.


    I could probably use a standard meter on my AC1 and Load lines between my inverter and panels. I have been considering that too.

    For the extra $ on the EKM type setup, I would get reporting capabilty to csv or email, graphical menus if desired, and additional metrics beyond just kwh. (Kind of like the Bogart TriMetric Battery meter but for the AC side.)
  • solarvicsolarvic Posts: 954Solar Expert
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting

    I applyed to be net metered. Had to send First Energy all the plans and $100.00
    engineering fee. I got an email to procede and a meter person showed up a few days later and changed the meter before the electrical work was done. I already got the first bill. They said if I made more than I use it isn,t considered net metering. I think alternitive energy in my area hasn,t caught on yet and no one seems to know what they are doing. Inspector never saw a solar system , only 1 wind turbine. Electrician never did any. I am sure I know more than they did. Now that My inspection was passed I think I don,t want to do anything to cause another inspection. I called the representive 3 times from First Wnergy and he never returned my phone calls. Finally I got thru to a local superviser for the power co and he said they were done. No one from the power co ever came to look over my system. I think each state has different requirements for net metering. I am preety sure I won,t have a surplus. Solarvic
  • nielniel Posts: 10,311Solar Expert ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting

    solarvic,
    read this if you haven't already,
    http://www.dsireusa.org/incentives/incentive.cfm?Incentive_Code=PA03R&re=1&ee=1
    i believe it states it is allowed to be cumulative to the end of the year.
    "Customer-generators are compensated for remaining NEG at the utility's "price-to-compare" at the end of the year." do not trust your utility to do right by you. here is the other pa areas you could brush up on,
    http://www.dsireusa.org/incentives/index.cfm?re=1&ee=1&spv=0&st=0&srp=1&state=PA
    also note that all of western pa does not have your utility as there are many others such as duquesne light, west penn power, allegheny power, and so on.

    i did not read the entire thread, but you can look up info for ohio or any other state at www.desireusa.org
  • a0128958a0128958 Posts: 306Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting
    dsp3930 wrote: »
    I need to collect the kwh generated by my inverter ( Xantrex 6048 ) and delivered to my sub-panel (Load/L1/L2) and main-panel (AC1/L1/L2) ...

    I'm contemplating using two EKM meters (Model EKM-25EDS-N v.2) to track this data. ...

    I think you have several options:

    1. Purchase of remanufactured kWh meters. I'm using these: http://www.hialeahmeter.com/ .

    2. I looked at the EKM meters back when I didn't have a monitoring system. I thought they looked pretty good.

    3. The Energy Detective (TED) is a pretty good self-contained neat and no fuss instrument, and, is compatible with Google's power monitoring capability making data available from remote locations.

    4. I'm using WattNode AC power and kWh meters from Continental Controls. These provide bi-directional outputs for PV and Net Metering. See http://www.ccontrolsys.com/products/pulse_output.html . (You'll need some kind of pulse counting capability with this alternative. I'm using the Web Energy Logger - http://www.welserver.com/ ).

    Hope this helps.

    Best regards,

    Bill
  • b. ecologìcAllb. ecologìcAll Posts: 18Registered Users
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting

    so, what was your final solution and how does it is working so far?
    We in PR are having a similar issue
    the XW6048 is a common inverter in the Island because of the backup power, we have a lot of power failures from the utility

    now days, there is an incentive from the government for solar installations
    but in order to qualify for the incentive
    the government must monitor the solar production from a web page (they like the sma sunnyweb option and think all manufactures have a similar solution)

    for some reason, Xantrex don't have a solution for this

    I was thinking on use TED, but, a XW have two outputs, AC1 and Loads
    the actual or real production of the solar system is AC1 + Loads
  • solar_davesolar_dave Posts: 2,280Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting
    so, what was your final solution and how does it is working so far?
    We in PR are having a similar issue
    the XW6048 is a common inverter in the Island because of the backup power, we have a lot of power failures from the utility

    now days, there is an incentive from the government for solar installations
    but in order to qualify for the incentive
    the government must monitor the solar production from a web page (they like the sma sunnyweb option and think all manufactures have a similar solution)

    for some reason, Xantrex don't have a solution for this

    I was thinking on use TED, but, a XW have two outputs, AC1 and Loads
    the actual or real production of the solar system is AC1 + Loads

    TED can have up to 4 detection devices (CT/MTU) connected.
  • b. ecologìcAllb. ecologìcAll Posts: 18Registered Users
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting

    tks for your answer
    does TED can show:
    daily solar energy production
    annual production
    instead of "kw used this month", to say "kw produced this month", etc...

    are there settings so the TED can sum both XW inverter ouputs and just show real output (loads + ac1)?
  • solar_davesolar_dave Posts: 2,280Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting
    tks for your answer
    does TED can show:
    daily solar energy production
    annual production
    instead of "kw used this month", to say "kw produced this month", etc...

    are there settings so the TED can sum both XW inverter ouputs and just show real output (loads + ac1)?

    You can keep them separate, do a sum, do a difference, it is all in how you configure the sensor data in the host unit. The host unit is basicly an internet appliance. It doesn't do annual but month to month data is available for up to 2 years for each sensor. Mine is a 4 sensor system, 1 main house, 2 solar, 3 office/workshop building, 4 Chevy Volt chargers.
    On mine the sensors 1, 3, 4 are loads and the sensor 2 is solar generation. 1+3 +4 are added for total load and sensor 2 is subtracted for net load.

    Mine does hourly, daily production, daily records are kept for up to 2 weeks, hourly for 2 days, real time interday is available on the dash board. It can do a net calculation as well. It can handle TOU rates but some what crudely if $$$ are of interest.

    Check the link in my signature to view it.
  • DanS26DanS26 Posts: 208Solar Expert ✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting

    solar dave,

    Just reviewed your TED readings. It seems you do not charge your Volts when the sun is shining. Is this because they are away from the charging units during daylight hours? I do know the Volts have a feature that you can program the charging time. Apparantly you do not use this feature.

    So the analysis is-- what is your equivalent cost of a gallon of gasoline? (ie your cost of kWh production x 33kWh = cost of equivalent gallon of gasoline). Does it make sense in your case to burn $4.00 gas or to use excess kWh production during daylight hours?

    Just curious.

    dan




    solar_dave wrote: »
    You can keep them separate, do a sum, do a difference, it is all in how you configure the sensor data in the host unit. The host unit is basicly an internet appliance. It doesn't do annual but month to month data is available for up to 2 years for each sensor. Mine is a 4 sensor system, 1 main house, 2 solar, 3 office/workshop building, 4 Chevy Volt chargers.
    On mine the sensors 1, 3, 4 are loads and the sensor 2 is solar generation. 1+3 +4 are added for total load and sensor 2 is subtracted for net load.

    Mine does hourly, daily production, daily records are kept for up to 2 weeks, hourly for 2 days, real time interday is available on the dash board. It can do a net calculation as well. It can handle TOU rates but some what crudely if $$$ are of interest.

    Check the link in my signature to view it.
    18.2kW Kyocera panels; 2 Fronius 7.5kW inverters; Nyle hot water; Steffes ETS; Great Lakes RO; Generac 10kW w/ATS
  • solar_davesolar_dave Posts: 2,280Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting
    DanS26 wrote: »
    solar dave,

    Just reviewed your TED readings. It seems you do not charge your Volts when the sun is shining. Is this because they are away from the charging units during daylight hours? I do know the Volts have a feature that you can program the charging time. Apparantly you do not use this feature.

    So the analysis is-- what is your equivalent cost of a gallon of gasoline? (ie your cost of kWh production x 33kWh = cost of equivalent gallon of gasoline). Does it make sense in your case to burn $4.00 gas or to use excess kWh production during daylight hours?

    Just curious.

    dan

    We charge immediate just cause it is easy and convenient to have a fully charged car at any time. With our solar our total electric bill since Dec. 1st has been $38 for all our needs plus we have over 1500 kWh of on-peak in the bank for summer usage. Our off peak price is dirt cheap at $0.05 and we almost meet our needs using solar from early morning and weekends. Last month the generation costs for off peak was $7.26 and as days get longer it gets better. I know it sounds weird but next month I will push the wife to run loads only during on peak. We already do dish washer and swimming pool after the start of on peak times. I suspect we will hit some night time consumption this summer. It is really an issue with how APS does net metering, generation can only offset consumption within the TOU period.

    The 2011 wife's volt has really never burned gas, under 2 gallons of dealer gas for 5500 miles since May 2011 (@ some ridiculous number mpg), my 2012 used 14 gallons on a road trip to Vegas for business in 3200 miles since Nov 30, 2011 (@200mpg now).

    Nothing like sending minimal $$$ to OPEC and getting the electrons for FREE!

    Actually the cost of a 40+ mile charge is virtually free and is 13.4 kWh. Even if I buy the electric off peak that is about $0.65 vs $4.00 for gas to go about 38 miles. Our current charge estimates are hitting 48 miles and we are actually getting about 50ish out of a charge with the temps in mid 80's.
  • DanS26DanS26 Posts: 208Solar Expert ✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting
    solar_dave wrote: »
    We charge immediate just cause it is easy and convenient to have a fully charged car at any time. With our solar our total electric bill since Dec. 1st has been $38 for all our needs plus we have over 1500 kWh of on-peak in the bank for summer usage. Our off peak price is dirt cheap at $0.05 and we almost meet our needs using solar from early morning and weekends. Last month the generation costs for off peak was $7.26 and as days get longer it gets better. I know it sounds weird but next month I will push the wife to run loads only during on peak. We already do dish washer and swimming pool after the start of on peak times. I suspect we will hit some night time consumption this summer. It is really an issue with how APS does net metering, generation can only offset consumption within the TOU period.

    The 2011 wife's volt has really never burned gas, under 2 gallons of dealer gas for 5500 miles since May 2011 (@ some ridiculous number mpg), my 2012 used 14 gallons on a road trip to Vegas for business in 3200 miles since Nov 30, 2011 (@200mpg now).

    Nothing like sending minimal $$$ to OPEC and getting the electrons for FREE!

    Actually the cost of a 40+ mile charge is virtually free and is 13.4 kWh. Even if I buy the electric off peak that is about $0.65 vs $4.00 for gas to go about 38 miles. Our current charge estimates are hitting 48 miles and we are actually getting about 50ish out of a charge with the temps in mid 80's.


    dave,

    Thanks for the info. I'm getting very close to going the Volt route myself.

    I'm still curious of your true "production cost" per kWh. Calculated by taking your total installed cost of the solar system (after fed, state, and local rebates) divided by total estimated production over the life of system (say 25 years and panel production derated say .71 per year) using PV Watts for your area.

    I think you know where I'm going with this. Charging your Volts is not "free" when your ignore your production costs.

    dan
    18.2kW Kyocera panels; 2 Fronius 7.5kW inverters; Nyle hot water; Steffes ETS; Great Lakes RO; Generac 10kW w/ATS
  • solar_davesolar_dave Posts: 2,280Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting
    DanS26 wrote: »
    dave,

    Thanks for the info. I'm getting very close to going the Volt route myself.

    I'm still curious of your true "production cost" per kWh. Calculated by taking your total installed cost of the solar system (after fed, state, and local rebates) divided by total estimated production over the life of system (say 25 years and panel production derated say .71 per year) using PV Watts for your area.

    I think you know where I'm going with this. Charging your Volts is not "free" when your ignore your production costs.

    dan


    I look at it a bit different, I used the cost avoidance from the utility to get to break even, after that the output is all free. My break even is at about 3.5- 4 years and I am about there.

    Edit :
    I took a rough swag at my total cost divide by my average production per month time 25 years. Works out to $0.037 a kWh. Of course that is pretty optimistic.
  • DanS26DanS26 Posts: 208Solar Expert ✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting
    solar_dave wrote: »
    I look at it a bit different, I used the cost avoidance from the utility to get to break even, after that the output is all free. My break even is at about 3.5- 4 years and I am about there.

    Edit :
    I took a rough swag at my total cost divide by my average production per month time 25 years. Works out to $0.037 a kWh. Of course that is pretty optimistic.


    WOW! Apparently you installed those panels yourself and purchased them for a fantastic price.

    My system has a production cost of $0.065 per kWh. I live in Indiana so my insolation is much lower than AZ. Here in Indiana I have to compete with cheap coal powered electricity which is produced by Hoosier Energy for our local REMC at between $0.02 to $0.03 per kWh. REMC sells me this electricity at $.06 in spring and fall and at $.10 in summer and winter. My average year round cost is about $.08 per kWh. Since here in Indiana the local REMCs try to protect their coal based suppliers, we have to comply with net billing rather than net metering, thus I have to sell excess to REMC at the wholesale rate. That rate is $.04 in spring and fall and $.08 in summer and winter.

    Bottom line is, that I barely break even, but it is a small profit on an annual basis. Most people ask me why I installed the system if it only pays back in 18 years. Well, I made a bet that those coal plants will be made to clean up their act and that electricity rates in Indiana will increase dramatically once the "pollution subsidy" is removed from these old line plants. Recent EPA directives supports my position. I look forward to the day when installing a solar system will be so cost effective that the average person will see it as a "no brainer" investment.
    18.2kW Kyocera panels; 2 Fronius 7.5kW inverters; Nyle hot water; Steffes ETS; Great Lakes RO; Generac 10kW w/ATS
  • solarvicsolarvic Posts: 954Solar Expert
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting

    Don,t know how many coal fired power plants are getting shut down in Indiana but in western pa. I heard many are in process of getting shut down. Am thinking with the increased ng production that a lot of power plants will be transitioning to NG. :Dsolarvic:D
  • solar_davesolar_dave Posts: 2,280Solar Expert ✭✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting
    DanS26 wrote: »
    WOW! Apparently you installed those panels yourself and purchased them for a fantastic price.

    My system has a production cost of $0.065 per kWh. I live in Indiana so my insolation is much lower than AZ. Here in Indiana I have to compete with cheap coal powered electricity which is produced by Hoosier Energy for our local REMC at between $0.02 to $0.03 per kWh. REMC sells me this electricity at $.06 in spring and fall and at $.10 in summer and winter. My average year round cost is about $.08 per kWh. Since here in Indiana the local REMCs try to protect their coal based suppliers, we have to comply with net billing rather than net metering, thus I have to sell excess to REMC at the wholesale rate. That rate is $.04 in spring and fall and $.08 in summer and winter.

    Bottom line is, that I barely break even, but it is a small profit on an annual basis. Most people ask me why I installed the system if it only pays back in 18 years. Well, I made a bet that those coal plants will be made to clean up their act and that electricity rates in Indiana will increase dramatically once the "pollution subsidy" is removed from these old line plants. Recent EPA directives supports my position. I look forward to the day when installing a solar system will be so cost effective that the average person will see it as a "no brainer" investment.


    Well here my TOU rates summer are 9AM to 9PM Mon thru Fri $0.179 and the rest of the time is $0.0575. Our flat rate anytime is about $0.095 winter and tiered summer $0.095 to $0.175 by usage. Been considering fail back to standard rates the issue is that in summer we use way more than we generate. In any case our payoff is pretty good with any of the rates plus when we install we got a $3.00 rebate per watt from the utility. Otherwise it would have been a huge payoff time. The rebates today are nothing like that, we hit the sweet spot in rebates and tax breaks and watched and waited for all the stars to line up.
  • DanS26DanS26 Posts: 208Solar Expert ✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting
    solar_dave wrote: »
    Well here my TOU rates summer are 9AM to 9PM Mon thru Fri $0.179 and the rest of the time is $0.0575. Our flat rate anytime is about $0.095 winter and tiered summer $0.095 to $0.175 by usage. Been considering fail back to standard rates the issue is that in summer we use way more than we generate. In any case our payoff is pretty good with any of the rates plus when we install we got a $3.00 rebate per watt from the utility. Otherwise it would have been a huge payoff time. The rebates today are nothing like that, we hit the sweet spot in rebates and tax breaks and watched and waited for all the stars to line up.

    I built my system for $2.08 per watt in November 2011. If you can DIY then grid parity is here based on current panel prices. I know China is roiling the solar market, but it is good to allow the DIY guy to compete with the wholesale power producers. By the way my panels were produced in San Diego, I just got a good deal on them because of the China dumping.
    18.2kW Kyocera panels; 2 Fronius 7.5kW inverters; Nyle hot water; Steffes ETS; Great Lakes RO; Generac 10kW w/ATS
  • DanS26DanS26 Posts: 208Solar Expert ✭✭
    Re: Sub-meter / KWH Metering for Utility Reporting
    solarvic wrote: »
    Don,t know how many coal fired power plants are getting shut down in Indiana but in western pa. I heard many are in process of getting shut down. Am thinking with the increased ng production that a lot of power plants will be transitioning to NG. :Dsolarvic:D

    This is a huge issue in Indiana. More than half of the coal plants cannot comply with the new EPA rules. But I'm a realist, the coal industry and the coal based energy producers have huge legislative leverage. This is going to be a struggle between the left coast and right coast environmentalist sentiment against the polluting midwest. The elections this fall may only delay the inevitable. NG is seen as the answer, but there is pain in the transition.
    18.2kW Kyocera panels; 2 Fronius 7.5kW inverters; Nyle hot water; Steffes ETS; Great Lakes RO; Generac 10kW w/ATS
Sign In or Register to comment.