Solar ideas

  • Needs a date

  • Needs a location

  • I am interested in what a small home owner could do for some solar energy options that don't require a major expense. Is there any way you could organize a meetup around this idea?

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  • Sue and S.

    Would love to attend something like this!

    December 28

  • Hilary H.

    I'm new to investigating our solar options and went the route of having a Solar City rep come over. I was very surprised at how little we would save and would like to get a second opinion. Also, he indicated that we would need a new roof as our current roof doesn't meet the installation criteria.

    October 28, 2013

  • David B.

    October 27, 2013

  • David B.

    Nushin, if you pick a date that works for the Grange, just click on add a date and add a location above. If you need any help, let me know. You might want to try and find someone to address both on-grid and off-grid options and clear the date with them.

    October 27, 2013

  • Brenda

    Some details a reseller might not tell you: If your power goes out, your on-grid solar panels will not supply electricity to your home. Solar panels feed the grid, and if a lineman is working on the wires near you, you will fry him/her if your panels are feeding the grid. So the electric company shuts off your power when the main grid goes down. On-grid panels will not supply you power if the grid is down. I have a booth at the nine day home show each year (for something other than solar). For the last 3 years I have asked around about off-grid solar. Most companies do not do off-grid solar and will not even have a conversation with you about it. Off-grid requires deep cell batteries, like the kind you use for a boat. They are 12 volt. An off-grid system requires DC (direct current) appliances. If you want to run AC (alternating current) appliances, you would need an inverter. Cheap inverters create a choppy wave, which does not work well with many appliances.

    2 · October 26, 2013

    • Brenda

      Most household appliances are AC. What I have learned about doing off-grid solar is a watt saved is a watt earned. You are not going to be able to run a house with myriad AC appliances with a roof full of panels. One of the first things to do is to figure out what is most necessary, then figure out how to run those items with less electricity. For example, I am setting up panels and I have found DC LED lights. They are low energy usage, and DC, so they can run off a battery.

      1 · October 26, 2013

    • Brenda

      Of course if you are interested in lowering your electric bill, on-grid is fine. But if you want solar panels for emergency situations, off-grid is the way to go. Plus, if you move some of your usage from on-grid to off-grid, you will still enjoy savings. There are DC refrigerators and other DC appliances (think RV--which run off a 12 volt battery). If you are going to dabble into solar, you should know the difference between off-grid and on-grid. There is no correct choice, but rather choices that are best for a specific need.

      1 · October 26, 2013

  • Jen

    I am interested in this too if someone could do this meetup that would be great!

    September 17, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Ben, I would be interested if you get a group together. I want to ck into the leasing option, heard that is cheaper, and have no idea of how this works yet. I will wait to see if a mtg comes together. thanks for being available.

    June 25, 2011

  • A former member
    A former member

    I would be interested if this meeting comes together (I live far north metro and driving far south Denver is out for me though). My electric bill is $45 in the coldest winter months and $35 the rest of the year so spending a bunch of money on solar panels or wind turbine makes no sense at all. If there are things that make sense to do, I say do it.

    May 8, 2011

  • keith

    I have no access to the power grid. I went with a mx80 outback charge controller. 6 x 2volt trojan L16RE-2V batteries http://www.trojanbatteryre.com/PDF/datasheets/L16RE2V_Trojan_Data_Sheets.pdf. 4 panels and a mike wind generator. Have not purchased a inverter yet so going to this spring. Homepower magazine has lots of information too. Up in the mountains most of the time i have no power and live without it. Until i get this system hookup i will live off a generator. So count me in.

    February 21, 2011

  • ben t.

    I would also be willing to help arrange a 1-2 hour Intro to Solar meetup/class if anyone was interested.

    It could include one or two of the local "low-key" (aka no pressure) installers that I work with to answer questions.

    No pressure from my end either, just trying to offer something I can contribute to the group!

    ben

    1 · September 28, 2010

  • ben t.

    Yes, there are new options. Right now, leasing is becoming more popular than buying a solar PV system. The leases are typically no money out of pocket, or very little, depending on the product you choose and the complexity of the project.

    I can put you in touch with local contractors I would recommend based on my experience working with them if you, or anyone else is interested. Full disclosure: I do work for one of the manufacturer's, but the contractors offer several other options.

    1 · September 28, 2010

  • Jessica

    There are co mpanies that rent solar panels. They install them and everything, and then you just pay them for your power, instead of the electric company. It doesn't exactly give you that off grid feeling, since you still have a monthly bill, but for many people, it's cheaper than Excel.

    1 · September 28, 2010

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  • Jen

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