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Pulled the trigger on Solar in Dallas, Texas

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  • Pulled the trigger on Solar in Dallas, Texas

    Well Solar family, I've just signed my commitment for a residential solar system...

    I know that Texas power rates make solar a hard sell in most cases, but I felt fortunate to have a good set of available incentives, a home that allowed a wide array of design options, and some somewhat aggressive pricing after engaging multiple installers.

    I'm a total home automation nut, so this seems like just another step in optimizing my home to meet my needs. Surprisingly enough, I still don't have a 240 outlet for my Model X here as my employer offers free charging that's met all of my needs to date.

    I've 'earned' a Powerwall 2 through one of the prior Tesla referral programs and I look forward to integrating it to the system especially as time of use shifting becomes available.

    So, what can I tell this group about my experience? I had a great time exploring options and visiting with multiple installers in the Dallas - Fort Worth area. Let's hope that the coming steps go well as the design confirmation, installation, and interconnection occurs.

    I look forward to updating this thread as my experience continues especially as Texas doesnt have quite the same penetration of Texas as many other markets in the US.

    System Design:
    Inverter: 1 x SolarEdge SE7600A
    Panels: 35 x Hanwha Q-Cells 280W
    System Size: 9.8 kW
    Location: Dallas, TX


    Incentives:
    Utility Rebate: $6,000
    Retail Provider Rebate: $1,470
    Federal ITC: $6,689


    My Wheels: Model X 75D | Autopilot 1 | Reserved 7/10/16 In-gallery | Delivered 9/16 | Referral: ask me questions!
    My Home: 9.8kW Solar PV System | Vera Plus Z-Wave |
    Attached Files
    Last edited by solar pete; 09-09-2017, 09:18 PM.

  • #2
    Looks like $3.04 or so/Watt before rebates? (( $6,689/.3)+ $6,000 + 1,470)/(35*280) = $3.037/STC Watt.

    What is your annual load in kWh and what does your utility rate structure look like as in your min/max. hourly rates?

    Any net metering available to you ?

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by J.P.M. View Post
      Looks like $3.04 or so/Watt before rebates? (( $6,689/.3)+ $6,000 + 1,470)/(35*280) = $3.037/STC Watt.

      What is your annual load in kWh and what does your utility rate structure look like as in your min/max. hourly rates?

      Any net metering available to you ?
      I've lived in this new construction home since December, so not enough time for a typical read yet.

      Average Usage: 1378kWh (949kWh - 1878kWh)
      Utility Rate Structures: Texas is deregulated so rates can wildly vary by term and source of power. Check out www.powertochoose.org to see more about Texas power rates

      Net Metering: Texas only has a few Retail Electric Providers which offer solar buyback: Green Mountain Energy, TXU Energy, Reliant, MP2

      Gross Price Per Watt: $2.91
      Net Price Per Watt: $1.51

      Comment


      • #4
        [QUOTE=majorcuddles;n360802]

        I've lived in this new construction home since December, so not enough time for a typical read yet.

        Average Usage: 1378kWh (949kWh - 1878kWh)
        Utility Rate Structures: Texas is deregulated so rates can wildly vary by term and source of power. Check out www.powertochoose.org to see more about Texas power rates

        Net Metering: Texas only has a few Retail Electric Providers which offer solar buyback: Green Mountain Energy, TXU Energy, Reliant, MP2

        Fed. tax credit is on bal. of sale after rebates, etc.

        I'm aware that TX rates vary quite a bit. What do yours look like, highest/lowest ? Also, of the few POCOs that offer net metering, is yours one of them ?

        Comment


        • #5
          [QUOTE=J.P.M.;n360810]
          Originally posted by majorcuddles View Post
          I'm aware that TX rates vary quite a bit. What do yours look like, highest/lowest ? Also, of the few POCOs that offer net metering, is yours one of them ?
          My current plan has some fixed charges, then first 1000 kWh are free, then $0.11/kWh. It's currently average of $0.7/kWh with monthly effective rates spread between .04 and .093

          Comment


          • #6
            [QUOTE=majorcuddles;n360811]
            Originally posted by J.P.M. View Post

            My current plan has some fixed charges, then first 1000 kWh are free, then $0.11/kWh. It's currently average of $0.7/kWh with monthly effective rates spread between .04 and .093
            I'm assuming/guess that "0.7/kWh" is meant as $0.07/kWh.

            That's pretty cheap. Especially, but depending on those fixed charges might be. Unless I'm missing something, I'd guess you're getting PV for reasons not related to any idea of cost effectiveness or financial breakeven any time soon.

            Comment


            • #7
              [QUOTE=J.P.M.;n360814]
              Originally posted by majorcuddles View Post

              I'm assuming/guess that "0.7/kWh" is meant as $0.07/kWh.

              That's pretty cheap. Especially, but depending on those fixed charges might be. Unless I'm missing something, I'd guess you're getting PV for reasons not related to any idea of cost effectiveness or financial breakeven any time soon.
              can't be for financial reasons unless OP wants to sharply increase his consumption: his bill is roughly $500/year (378Wh x12 x 0.11) and out of pocket cost close to 15k so break even is around 30 years and I doubt equipment will last that long.

              Comment


              • #8
                [QUOTE=J.P.M.;n360814]
                Originally posted by majorcuddles View Post

                I'm assuming/guess that "0.7/kWh" is meant as $0.07/kWh.

                That's pretty cheap. Especially, but depending on those fixed charges might be. Unless I'm missing something, I'd guess you're getting PV for reasons not related to any idea of cost effectiveness or financial breakeven any time soon.
                looks like breakeven will be around 8.5-9.5 years out at current consumption.

                Charging the Model X at home would change that payback period.

                Comment


                • #9
                  [QUOTE=majorcuddles;n360822]
                  Originally posted by J.P.M. View Post

                  looks like breakeven will be around 8.5-9.5 years out at current consumption.

                  Charging the Model X at home would change that payback period.
                  Well, even using the moron payback method and your numbers of ~ $0.07/kWh and $1.51/ STC Watt price, and a PVWatts est. of ~~1,500 kWh/yr. of production per installed STC kW:

                  Each installed STC kW will produce: 1,500 kWh/yr. @~$0.07/kWh ~ = 1,500 kWh * $0.07/kWh = $105/yr.

                  Each installed STC kW will cost you: $1.51/W * 1,000 W/kW = $ 1,510/installed STC kW.

                  Moron payback method = installed initial cost/1st year annual saving.

                  Using your numbers: $1,510/$105/yr. = ~ 14.4 years.


                  I'm not sure I could conjure up discount rates, inflation rates, salvage (resale) rates and other things required for a more rigorous cost analysis to get to a nine year payback, but I'm ignorant of your particulars and it ain't my system.

                  The system as you describe it, and going on incomplete information, may be sized about right, producing something close to 14,700 kWh/yr. or so to meet an ~1,378 *12 =15,536 kWh/yr. est. load, but will probably not meet much, if any of an additional EV load.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by majorcuddles View Post

                    looks like breakeven will be around 8.5-9.5 years out at current consumption.

                    Charging the Model X at home would change that payback period.
                    with your current average consumption of 1,378 kWh/month and 1,000 kWh free you're paying for 378 kWh/month on average at $0.11/kWh meaning your total yearly bill without solar would be around $500 as I stated above. To be breakeven in 9 years your system cost must be $4,500 but you stated 9,800 kW with net price $1.51/Wh meaning you paid 9,800 x 1.51 = $14,798 Something doesn't add up by a factor of 3 for me.

                    Charging your model X at home would improve this somewhat: at some assumed 30 miles 2-way trip with 0.4kWh/mile efficiency it would require 12 kWh/day extra again at $0.11 = $1.32/day or $481.8/year of extra electrical bill you'd incur if you were charging your model X at home without solar.

                    If your system cost is $14,798 charging model X would shorten breakeven period from 30 years to 15: 14,798 / (500 + 481.8) = approx 15. The more you buy the more you save .

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by max2k View Post

                      with your current average consumption of 1,378 kWh/month and 1,000 kWh free you're paying for 378 kWh/month on average at $0.11/kWh meaning your total yearly bill without solar would be around $500 as I stated above. To be breakeven in 9 years your system cost must be $4,500 but you stated 9,800 kW with net price $1.51/Wh meaning you paid 9,800 x 1.51 = $14,798 Something doesn't add up by a factor of 3 for me.
                      Goodness... You and J.P.M. are awfully fixated on this breakeven point. To both your points, I do have some non monetary objectives here. I also think your assumptions are a bit simplistic on how my current rate plan is structured. Here's my last 6 months of bills ($619).

                      But moving along... I'm looking forward to the build out and learning as this progresses. Any thoughts other than poking holes at the assumed payback period? LOL
                      (I'm not trying to be a total smartass here... all bidders had a payback period that ranged between 9-12 years... So I think it's more that I'm not conveying something effectively in the base scenario)

                      Attached Files
                      Last edited by solar pete; 09-11-2017, 12:06 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by majorcuddles View Post

                        Goodness... You and J.P.M. are awfully fixated on this breakeven point. To both your points, I do have some non monetary objectives here. I also think your assumptions are a bit simplistic on how my current rate plan is structured. Here's my last 6 months of bills ($619).

                        But moving along... I'm looking forward to the build out and learning as this progresses. Any thoughts other than poking holes at the assumed payback period? LOL
                        (I'm not trying to be a total smartass here... all bidders had a payback period that ranged between 9-12 years... So I think it's more that I'm not conveying something effectively in the base scenario)
                        Just using your numbers. Actually, I'm more interested in maximizing cost effectiveness. Sorry I wasted your time. I won't be repeating that error.

                        ADD: Thank you for your feedback.
                        Last edited by J.P.M.; 09-11-2017, 02:14 PM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by majorcuddles View Post
                          Well Solar family, I've just signed my commitment for a residential solar system...
                          My Wheels: Model X 75D | Autopilot 1 | Reserved 7/10/16 In-gallery | Delivered 9/16 | Referral: ask me questions!
                          My Home: 9.8kW Solar PV System | Vera Plus Z-Wave |
                          Congrats and welcome. I recently had a 8.4kW system installed under the heel of Garland Power & Light.

                          How is the Vera working out? I am using a Samsung SmartThings hub for most all except the security system. I don't like all the cloud dependency though. Will Vera run locally? I am looking at a Universal Devices ISY994 but the jury is still out.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Welcome to the forum and I hope your system works to your liking. I also have a hard time seeing any simple payback under 15 years, but that is your money not mine. We do tend to get lots of folks coming asking for advice on the most cost effective proposals, so I cringed a bit when I saw both you and DrLumen were from Tx because we have had these conversations a few times with folks comparing their quotes with others from CA where the installation costs may be near the same, but the simple payback is much different since we are averaging in the 25ish cents per kwh.

                            Either way, glad to have you guys here.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              cebury, I'm currently paying about 11 cents per kWh and the payoff for mine was about 12 years for worst case. From what I know of Green Mountain, majorcuddles is paying a bit more. However, he is likely getting a better buyback deal. If we were paying 25 cents per kWh like CA then it would really be worth the cost. I did it more as a hedge against rising electric costs and to try to eliminate future bills. Even if it takes 20 years to re-coop the costs, I still get 5 years (assuming all the panels drop dead at 25 years) of free electric.

                              I also work from home so that allows most of our household usage (AC in the Texas summers) while the panels are producing.

                              Comment

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