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Solar energy generation - storing vs supply to the grid

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Posts: 10
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(@desertfoxx)
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Hello all. This is a general post on Solar energy generation, looking for feedback and sharing of experience. Planning to move to PT shortly and planning for a Solar PV setup. Does anyone have experience of doing this? What is the policy on selling back to the grid? Any contractors / installers out there? Thx.

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Posts: 10
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Topic starter
(@desertfoxx)
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Joined: 2 months ago

Found this very informative research document which summarises return on investment calculations for various configurations.

https://loja.solarimpact.pt

 

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(@h1berto)
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Hi. I've just installed 4 solar panels at my house, and this was done by the electric company itself (on my case EDP). Installments of 48€ over 48 months. Each panel 300W. 2304€ in total.

I could've done this directly with an installer (it would be "cheaper"), but i opted for the company for a few reasons.

First, warranty and support (10 years on the panels and microinverters + 2 on the instalation itself).

Second, i have a 10% discount on the invoice during 24 months.

Third, and because i have 4 panels (minimum is 3) i have a free station that measures all energy going in and out, and i can add IoT devices via ZigBee and create automations.

All excess energy goes to the network and i get money back (because it's only been one month and a half i don't have this number yet).

Besides this, i also installed a heat pump (300L) for heating water also connected to solar panels. In short my invoice dropped 50% in one month, from 200 -> 100€. Household with 2 adults and 2 children (all eletric no gas).
But this will improve due to more sun that now comes in, but also the value of the energy i supply to the network.

Batteries can make sense if you are more off-grid, besides that, i think it's better to go with the solution i have.

Hope this helps.

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Community Member
(@desertfoxx)
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@h1berto

Very interesting to be able to relate to real life data. Considering your bill is for March, it is already an excellent result that you saved 50%. This figure will only improve as sunshine increases. That will make your return on investment 18 months or less which is excellent.

I didn't know about ZigBee and found the possibilities very interesting.

Can you share some info about your heat pump? Is this connected to another set of solar panels? 

I have a heat inverter pump from Daikin to heat water for heating my house. Very efficient and reliable. Efficiency is 1:3, for every W consumed it generates 3W of energy. 

Many thanks for sharing your experience.

 

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Community Member
(@h1berto)
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@desertfoxx

Hi. For the heat pump, yes I have a separate set of solar panels. They used to be connected to a normal water heater tank but the bill was very expensive.

I opted for this one due to consumption. It goes to 350W max (it’s basically a refrigerator working the opposite way) but it also has an electric heater for “emergencies” in the winter.

with both sets of panels from March-Ocotober I basically get heated water for free.

Your solution is also very good, the brand is excellent...but does not cost 2200€ (what I paid for mine). Also you can hook up heating also.

I have AC in all my house, but in the winter I would prefer a different solution. Next step will be to connect my fireplace to a central heating system or use a pellets solution.

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Community Member
(@h1berto)
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@desertfoxx

Some pics of the App where you check the solar system. It also “predicts” what your next bill will be according to your current usage. Last month was almost spot on.

 

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Community Member
(@rlneumiller)
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@h1berto Thanks for sharing this information with us.  Do you happen to know if there are retrictions on adding battery storage with your grid connected system?

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Community Member
(@h1berto)
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Posts: 10

@rlneumiller

For residential i don’t think there’s any problem. I can send you a great YouTube channel that has exactly that solution with solar panels, signee IoT and lots of stuff but...it’s in Portuguese 😊

 

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Premium Member
(@terrell)
Joined: 5 months ago

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Posts: 32

@h1berto, if you would kindly still post a link to the YouTube channel you mentioned,  I would be interested --- it might still help us non-native speakers find further assistance from native speakers ;-).

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Community Member
(@h1berto)
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@terrell

Of course 🙂

This is part of his big channel, where he addresses the “Smart Home” theme. Really cool.

Let me know if you need help on navigating it.

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Community Member
(@rlneumiller)
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@h1berto Thanks. Fortunately google translation appears to be almost good enough to understand the major points. 😀 It helps that I have some experience with solar installation and design, so I can work out most of the erroneous translations.

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Community Member
(@desertfoxx)
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@rlneumiller I found this guy has an excellent english language channel. Interesting content..! 

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(@rlneumiller)
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@desertfoxx Thanks for the tip.

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(@jgibson)
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Joined: 5 months ago

Thank you for the information. 

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Posts: 32
Premium Member
(@terrell)
Eminent Member
Joined: 5 months ago

@desertfoxx and @h1berto, thanks for this information! I am hoping to hear more on this topic as well from you and other expats. 

 It also appears there may be government grants to support installation of solar, (see the info and link below). Digging through the site and looking at the language, though, my conclusion is that that expats may not qualify -- however, maybe someone with better translation skills can review this? 

 

"Below is a link for the Portuguese environmental fund, where the Portuguese Government discusses financial support for creating sustainable buildings. Currently, in 2021, support for solar panels has not started yet, but according to this site, there will be another program forthcoming. 

https://www.fundoambiental.pt/avisos-2020/mitigacao-das-alteracoes-climaticas/programa-de-apoio-a-edificios-mais-sustentaveis.aspx&source=gmail&ust=1618416125105000&usg=AFQjCNH9RNpTHj-KgO2rl94OI93Kd0CKS A"> https://www.fundoambiental.pt/avisos-2020/mitigacao-das-alteracoes-climaticas/programa-de-apoio-a-edificios-mais-sustentaveis.aspx

Click on the menu Avisos 2020 – Programa de Apoio a Edificios mais sustentáveis."

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