Finally some sun!

Well, after a long cold and particulary rainy winter we have a few days of sun and finally we can start to generate some solar power.

In fact, this is the first time that our solar PV system has had a chance to show us what it can do and it is very encouraging.

A couple of days ago we had a day of continuous sun and as it was the day after the equinox the day/night was almost exactly 50%/50%.

As you can see from the display from the inverter we geenrated 38kWh!!! WOW! That is about what 3 family homes might typically use in a day!

Now the question remains… do we need, or would we significantly benefit, from home battery storage? We are getting an electric car again in the near future and we are going on to the Octopus Agile electricity tariff so it is a confused situation that I will be considering over the next few weeks… not a lot else to do with this coronavirus lockdown!!!

2 thoughts on “Finally some sun!”

  1. Well done! Great to see some much renewable energy generation.

    Regarding battery storage, I don’t think it would make economic sense in your case. However, there may be other things you can do to make greater use of your solar energy. For example, if you have an immersion heater then you can install something called a power diverter that will send excess power for hot water production ahead of exporting to the grid. Also, try to do power-hungry tasks (like washing clothes) in the middle of the day.

    Certain car chargers (the MyEnergi Zappi is one example) have a function to let you charge preferentially from your own solar energy. This could definitely help you maximise self-consumption.

    Strategies like these tend to be a more cost-effective way to maximise self-consumption than batteries. I’ll be interested to hear how your analysis turns out though!

    1. Thank you Dominic for your interest and comment.

      I agree with your assessment. A battery right now probably isn’t the best way to spend the money right now but that might change.

      I don’t have an immersion or I would have done as you suggested with a power diverter. I am considering whether it is financially viable to get one though as a 200 litre tank of water is a good way to store energy if I am going to need the hot water anyway.

      I have looked at Zappi.

      Working out the best way forward is not simple and what appears to be the obvious way is not necessarily the best way. However, anyway is arguably better than no way so I will have to decide soon on what to do. This has all been complicated even further by me joining the Octopus Agile tariff. With that tariff a battery is even less financially viable.

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