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Solar Panels

April 9th, 2015 at 08:35 pm

Back in Mar 2011 I blogged about our solar panels. We got it installed that month and at that time DH calculated that it would take us about 4 years to breakeven. Well, it is now 4 years later. Oh by the way our first electricity bill for the year came last month it was for $23.13 CREDIT. The previous bill in Dec was for only $8.89 (debit) so we were not required to pay so they just carried it forward to this new bill. So the current balance is $14.24 credit. We will not get this in cash because we have opted for any credit to just carry if forward to the next bill.

I did some calculation of our electric bills:

In 2010 (the year before the Solar panel) we spent $763.49 on our electricity.
*Dec 2010 there was an increase in rates.

2011 it was $653.77.
*Dec 2011 there was an increase in rates. Mar 2011 we got the Solar Panels installed.

2012 it was our best year and we actually got $249.44 CREDIT.

2013 electricity only cost us $87.56 debit.

2014 was $452.71.
This was a lot higher than previous years mainly because we had my brother with us for 6 months that year. *Dec 2014 there was another increase in rates.

So assuming that without the solar panels we would have paid around $800 per year (accounting for the rate increases and my brother staying with us) it would have amounted to $3,200 in 4 years. Instead we only paid $944.60, so a saving of $2,255.40.

The Solar Panels cost were:
Cost Including Installation $7,857.00
(minus) Government Rebate $5,360.00
Out of Pocket $2,497.00
Payment to the Electric Company (for connection) $215.78
TOTAL = $2,712.78

So, that is still $457.38 in the negative. But I also had to calculate our gas bill because we now only use electricity for heating in winter instead of gas.

Gas Expenses:

2010 was $757.57 - the year before solar panels

2011 was $675.01
*Jan 2011 there was an increase in rates

2012 was $579.55
*There were 2 rates increases in Feb and Jul

2013 was $408.89
*Again another rate increase in Jan 2013

2014 was $463.34
*Another rate increase in Jan but it decrease in Jul 2014 because of the removal of the carbon tax.
Note also that my brother stayed with us for 6 months.

Again an average of $800 per year would have been a reasonable gas bill for us. So that would have been $3,200 for the 4 years but instead we only paid $2,126.79 (we normally use gas for cooking and hot water), a saving of $1,073.21. Overall this takes us to $615.83 in the positive. So yeah we are now break-even, it probably really happened mid last year. Obviously, the government rebate helped a lot in breaking even a lot sooner.

3 Responses to “Solar Panels”

  1. VS_ozgirl Says:

    I know lots of people who have had positive results on solar panels too

  2. PatientSaver Says:

    Wow, that is very affordable for the purchase. I often wondered what the initial cost was. I just was talking with someone in the neighborhood who covered their roof and garage roof with them; they'r e the first in my neighborhood.

  3. Shiela Says:

    They are getting cheaper and cheaper here in Australia even though the government rebate is not available anymore. But they won't get as much rate for their excess energy that they sell to the energy company. We were lucky to get the higher rate and that the government made it a policy that the energy company have to pay us a certain rate.

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