Posted by:

jfas1

The PV system preforms better than it was predicted to. Together with the home energy efficiency measures we took, home is much more comfortable and affordable.

What You Need to Know

Description:

solar panels on our roof

Other Benefits:

increased our house market value, decreased our electric use more than anticipated (shaded roof in summer and heat blanketed roof in winter)

Maintenance Requirements:

tow component had to be changed out - one because of a manufacturer's defect which did not effect us but our installer replaced our inverter anyway, and one fuse had to be replaced.

Efficiency or Sustainability Improvements:

added to our house: caulking around basement sill plates, caulking at all breaks in the exterior walls (doors, windows, piping), foam behind all electric outlets on exterior walls, attic reflective barrier, new high hats with sealed units for those that had attic space above them, attic access drop down stair insulator (installs form the attic side and zips shut), whole house electric conditioner (capacitor), repaired weatherstripping on two entry doors, replaced old A/C unit, replaced old whole house gas generator, added solar blanket to pool for summer months, already had floor to ceiling thermal drapes and 14 inch attic floor insulation.

My Motivation:

#1 reduce out greenhouse gas emissions, #2 reduce our overall energy costs, #3 prevent the creation of a new power plant which would remove the look forward costs of borrowing the money to build the plant for all L.I. electric consumers.

Advice:

Never install a PV system until after you have had energy efficiency work done on your home. That is the cheaper, faster and more cost effective step to take, especially if your home is leaking air and poorly insulated.

Experience with Installer:

excellent - exceeded my expectations with both the installation and the service we have gotten since then.

Additional Notes:

Process took four years - I had to convince my husband it was worth doing. A computer prediction program used by a local non-profit gave false results indicating it would take us between 24 and 32 years to pay off the system/. it was using 13 cents a kw when we were in fact paying 21 with all costs based on usage taken into account. And two installation companies were also using faulty financial models. The system will actually be paid off in 14 to 15 years due to better than expected performance and using the correct cost of electricity for our area.

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