New Grid Tie System

SystemSystem Posts: 2,511 admin
I have plans to remodel our home. One of the projedts is to install a 2 - 3 KW grid tie system to take advantage of the tax credit and start generating my own power. I live in the southwest corner of Arkansas. I have plenty of space. I plan to use a pole mount with 6 to 8 per pole depending on individual wattage.
Any thoughts or concerns I should look out for. Any one you know of close I might look at?

Thanks

Comments

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,696 admin
    Re: New Grid Tie System

    Are you pole mounting to use a 1 or 2 axis tracker? Or just pole mounting because it is handy?

    Have you checked out with your utility to make sure they offer you a good 1 year net metering plan--or is it something else. Not all plans are equal (and many smaller co-ops may not allow Grid Tied systems).

    And, you realize that a "pure GT" system--while best price/performance cannot (without hardware) run if your power fails.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • System2System2 Posts: 6,290 admin
    Re: New Grid Tie System

    I was strongly considering using a fixed angle tilt pole mount because of the ground area I have available. Roof mount seamed more difficult.

    I have not checked with my electric coop. I read where all utilities had to allow net metering based on a government bill. I may have miss read. I will follow up.

    Yes I did realize the fact that there would be no back up for a power outage. I had planned to invest in a transfer switch and use my generator I bought during the last ice storm.

    I also plan to install a geothermal heat pump. Our current system is 16 years old and not very efficient. Trying to save more electricity. I have also purchased a Kill A Watt monitor to help decide about changing out other appliances. They are also many years old

    Thanks for the suggestions
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 29,696 admin
    Re: New Grid Tie System

    In general, I would agree that a fixed array mount is a better investment than a tracking mount... Money saved on trackers, buy more panels. Less maintenance and more reliable.

    Pole mount vs. ground mount. Double check doing a ground mount as a pole mount may require a big hole and lots of concrete for structural support.

    Mounting on a house is sometimes handy (especially on a 2nd floor if there is a chance of theft. Also--take a look at getting theft resistance hardware or even some sort of simple alarm system (wire strung through holes drilled in panels that would be cut to remove panels.

    Spending time and money on conservation is going to be your best investment. Using less power in-home (lighting, fridge, freezer, computers, etc.) will also reduce your A/C loads too (and save you paying money to move the "heat" outside).

    Depending on your needs--a heat recovery ventilator may be nice (to save heating/cooling energy and still get fresh air)). And we have been talking about the mini-split AC systems from Sanyo and Fujitsu here too (20-26 SEER?). Or, you may look at a desuper heater for domestic hot water (if conventional A/C).

    Of course, lots of insulation and double pane windows too...

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
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