I have already been in the process of switching over to the more efficient bulbs. We're probably about 85% switched at present (we replace them as the
standard bulbs burn out). We also have some fluorescent lights though also, these would be harder to switch out (mostly in the stables and in the
I've pretty much come to terms that I likely won't have enough power in an emergency (using solar only) to run the central heat/air units. These
aren't standard home units, but more commercial level (two of them, as one is for a separate part of the house). The other option here may be to
improve airflow throughout the house with different windows, but a whole other expense. It gets ok airflow when all the windows are open, but some
can't be opened.
The house (and connected shop) is about 4500 sq ft. The appliances are all new and energy efficient models...but there are two refrigerators (one in
the kitchen, one in the mancave), 9 HDTVs (though rarely are more than two on at a time), a microwave, 3 mini-fridges (one in each stable, one in the
garage/workroom), dishwasher, washer and dryer, double oven, well pump, and of course lights, electric fencing (when on), and eventually an electric
My wife's scraproom has all kinds of electronic doo-dads, but even then, she'll likely only have one - two of those going at a given time. The other
big draw are the fans in the stables, but those aren't really a necessity, more of a luxury when wanting to keep the horses out of the heat.
I have lots of roofspace (and at different angles/directions) between all the different buildings (house, garage, main stables, secondary stables,
large shed, and horse shelter), and we get lots of sun. So panel placement options aren't an issue.
On batteries, everything I've read mentions needing deep cycle. Like I said though, I'm still in the research phase of this, tech is always improving,
and incentives to "go green" are getting better and better also...it's just about balancing cost, return on investment, and benefits.
The power companies will NEVER pay you even close to what you pay them for power.
Unless you can isolate your system, solar is pretty much a waste on grid.
The power companies rape you just like the banks.
Did you read the articles I linked to? Numbers are given.
reply to post by davjan4
Excellent advice on the meter, etc. Thanks!
Seems they only go for about $20.
Here's a pic of the grounds, to get an idea of the roof space, etc. (the long white vehicle to the right of the house is my wife's uncle's RV, so the
pic was taken around May of last year)
edit on 19-2-2013 by Gazrok because: (no reason given)