||Grid-Tie PV Systems are solar electric
systems that interface with your utility meter and export
your surplus energy back to the power company, thereby
spinning your meter backwards.
This can be done
with batteryless inverters that only work when utility power
is present (not during power outages) or with the more complex
battery back-up systems that provide emergency power. There
is no one system that applies to every home, each one is
individually designed, taking into consideration such things
as location, lifestyle, specific requirements, and of course,
price. Land and Sea Solar handles all the paperwork and permits
necessary and makes provides you with a turnkey Grid-Tie
Do you have an open, unshaded
area in your yard that's more than 15 feet from property
lines for possible pole mounting of a solar array (most
preferable) or do you have areas of unobstructed roof
that ideally faces south? (East
or west will still catch 85 % of available sun as long
as no shading occurs.) We recommend a site evaluation
and we have tools to measure the amount of available
sun at your location.
Is your aim to
use solar to supplement your power consumption
or do you also need back-up power during outages? The
extra cost of a battery system over a grid-tie
system can amount to an additional $1500-$3500.
Also, the efficiency of a battery system is about
20% less, so you will loose that much power production
to maintaining the batteries. Another option
for infrequent blackouts is to install a small
generator to run crucial loads, especially if
there are 220-volt loads involved.
Determining Your Usage Your daily kilowatt hour consumption is the crucial
piece of info we'll need to determine system size. Look on your bills
or simply call the utility company. They can add up the kilowatt hours
used for 12 months and then divide it by 12 for your monthly average
or ask them to divide it by 365 for the daily average. The daily kilowatt
hour usage can be divided by the amount of average sunlight received
by the solar panels. That number will be 4.5- 5.5 hours depending on
Santa Cruz Coastal
= 4.5 hrs.
Other areas in Santa Cruz = 4.7 hrs
Sunnyvale = 5.1 hrs.
Let's say you used 13 kWh, and lived in Santa Cruz. 13/ 4.5 = 2.88 kW.
2.88 kilowatts or 2880 watts, is the amount of solar generation you will
need to match the initial consumption. Since there are losses involved
in all phases of the power conversion from sunlight to D.C to A.C, the
losses must be factored into the equation.
The percent of inefficiency will average around 30%. That means that
for every kilowatt of solar installed, 300 watts will be lost to inefficiencies.
That 2880 watts times 130% will mean we need to have around 3744 watts
of solar to generate that amount of power. The rough cost for labor and
materials is between $7-10 per watt for a grid-intertie system. From
that figure, you can deduct the rebates to get an approximate idea how
much you will have to spend. If this is within your budget, then we can
give you an exact bid for the total installation.
Of course it is not necessary to offset 100%
of your usage with solar. The most important portion of your
utility usage to offset is the "over baseline" portion
of the bill for which you are being penalized. The utlity penalizes
you for any usage over baselines amount which is somewhere
around 350 kilowatt hours and the penalties increase in multi-tiers.
Solar can help get you out of the most expensive tiers, the
ones that almost double the cost per kilowatt hour. So in other
words if you actually needed a 7 kw solar system to break even,
you may find the smaller, less expensive 4 kw system would
be the better value by getting you out of the "over baseline" bracket.
We offer Site Evaluation service for a cost of $50, which is refundable
when you purchase your system. The evaluation includes a survey of the
site with our solar measuring tool to assess the exact amount of solar
potential at your location as well as measurements necessary to make
an accurate quote on your system.
For more information please call 831-336-8650 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
We provide a 10-year warranty on our grid-tie systems
Utility- Intertie related links:
Database of Renewables incentives by state
PGE solar homepage
California master site for all renewables incentives
CSI incentive calculator