Key Post Solar Panels?

S

sueellen

Guest
I was thinking about getting solar panels installed on the roof.

Has any one else got this done before ?

Is it expensive ? Can you sell any excess electricity to the ESB ?

I see in the UK, that you can get 50% grants.. Is anything similar available here ?
 
T

Tricia

Guest
Re: Grants for solar power?

Hey treehugger,

I don't think you can get grants for solar panels here... at least, I didn't manage to get one.

I've had the solar panel since July and have found that with the hot water cylinder on for a couple of half hours, it generally has the water heated up to the amount I would need to wash up and get clothes washed and get me washed. There is a noticeable difference in weeks where the sun is hidden by dark clouds though, which is obvious. It is interesting how it changes your habits though - I'll do huge clothes washes when there has been a really sunny day, for example.

Hope that helps,

Tricia
 
D

demoivre

Guest
Re: Grants for solar power?

There aren't grants available but www.sei.ie will put you in the right direction - they sent me out loads of info. on solar heating suppliers etc.
 
S

sueellen

Guest
Re: Grants for solar power?

Some other posts

Natchessmen
Registered User
Solar Panel


I'm thinking of buying a solar Panel (for water only) the vendor is called Spectrum Energy www.spectrum-energy.com/Has anyone heard of them? any experience of them? My web searches all point to it being legitimate but who better than AAM to smell a rat?

As an investment the pay-back is very much a function of energy price inflation, my estimate is that at 10% inflation it's a 6 year pay back. But as an environmental decision it makes more sense.


All useful advise welcome

heinbloed
Unregistered User
solar-panel


Hi Natchessman !

I have no experience with the company you mentioned, but I'm interested in buying and installing a solar panel myself. What would be the price and the service of "spectrum-energy"?

Natchessmen
Registered User
Re: solar-panel

What would be the price and the service of "spectrum-energy"?
The price is around GBP 700, but there are some discounts and gov. grants etc. The sales pitch revolves around personal testimonials etc. and certainly B&B's and small businesses seem to rave about it. They (sales people) tell me that the typical household uses half its energy on hot water, DOES ANY ONE AGREE/DISAGREE? The other sales pitch preys on environmental fear, a little heavy at times but hey maybe their right. As I said in the first mail its just for water heating, I understand that full electric is a bigger project moving into the GBP 20-30k mark. My feeling is that with this simple system there are less things to go wrong (one moving part) and so less maintenance-fear. Also it is portable and so can come with me should I move again. If you checked the link you will have seen that the principle is that it works on IR energy rather that the more famous thermal transfer, so UK/Irish weather is not as big an issue. Certainly the testimonials are saying that it will heat all water for 9 months of the year with minimal top up and will part heat the water for the other three months.

Nat

0
Frequent poster
Re: solar-panel

They (sales people) tell me that the typical household uses half its energy on hot water, DOES ANY ONE AGREE/DISAGREE?
I would have thought that most houshold energy would normally be used on heatin the house itself? Of course some systems (e.g. oil/gas fired central heating) may combine this with heating the water for kitchen/bathroom use too.

It might be worth cheking with SEI about solar and other sustainable energy solutions (e.g. wind convectors, mini-turbines, heat pumps etc. - I used to work indirectly with all of these but it's been a few years now...) and providers.

www.irish-energy.ie/content/content

heinbloed
Unregistered User
solar-panel


Thanks Natchessmen!

700 GBP doesn't seem to be to bad .But I doubt very much that the standard household in our hemisphere is using half of it's energy demand for hot tap water . My information is based on my own judgment , my home is well insulated, I would say 10 %.However does that price include the pump(is it solar driven-with photovoltaik panel?)and the tank/heat exchanger ?And does the price include the installation incl.the cert to get the grant and to be insured in case of a leak ?

Gary
Unregistered User
Solar panel


Any thoughts/suggestions on the feasibility of this heating the water for the underfloor heating sufficiently to have a little heat in the summer months without having to run the boiler? Or would the volume of water used in the underfloor system be too large for this to be any use?

Natchessmen
Registered User
Re: solar-panel


Heinbloed,

A few things:

Yes that does include the pump but the system is not photovoltaik, instead it works by a series of tubes, that directly converts IR energy, to heat the water (that is it is connected directly to the hot water tank).
Yes the price includes the installation, the installation seems pretty simple.

I'm interested that you reckon that only 10% of your energy bill goes on hot tap water. Is there any way to measure what are the energy drivers in a domestic setting. My house is quite old (well half of it is) it has single skin walls with (obviously) v. poor insulation how would one go about increasing the energy efficiency of such a structure?

Nat

rainyday
Moderator
Re: solar-panel


There was some coverage on BBC's Watchdog show about sharp practices from some of those selling solar panels in the UK.

heinbloed
Unregistered User
solar panel


Hi natchessmen!

Thanks for the reply,I was thinking about the pump , if it runs on solar energy , otherwise it would run permanently -even at night time-or there must be some sensor (light or temperature based)to switch on or of .
Are there ways to measure energy drivers in the house hold ? Yes.For electric energy you can buy these gadgets that can be put between plug and socket and they give you a more or less accurate reading in watts and amps,some contain a calculator that actually tells what a spin in the washing machine or an hour TV did cost .
For heat energy -I suppose your hot water tank has been connected to the central heating - it is more difficult to calculate.I would go for estimations like those of the department of environment.or ask an engineer or a neighbour with a similar structure .But installing a solar panel in a badly insulated house seems a waste of money since pay back time for an energy saving investment is the shortest if one goes for the better insulation first .There may be exemptions,for example if that part of the building wouldn'be heated anyhow.
The tubes that you are going to buy are certainly better than the normal panels , they get more out of the sun radiation ,however they are also more prune to breaks with sudden temperature change i.e.hail .
Here is a website that will lead you further to solar energy supliers in Ireland:www.sei.ie.When you check their pages you will get more info about the various types and qualities,they also claim that" up to 30% of energy can be saved with a hot water/solar system but - and that is important-only if the total energy bill is already low i.e. in the region of an low energy house (between 10 and 80 kw/square meter/year).That means that a building that uses a large quantity of its energy for hot tap water will save a larger sum while a building that uses most of the energy for other things like heating will save only a smaller fraction , percentages we are speaking of .However the total of saved energy -in kilowatts- will stay the same .
If you speak German or have someone to translate for you than there is www.energienetz.com which covers all aspects of energy saving incl.solar power , its the most comprehensive I came across.

heinbloed
Unregistered User
solar/underfloor


You can use the solar panel to get some heat into your floor but since floor heatings are slower to react-the heat has to penetrate the floor-it is more advisable to install a good window large enough to cover floor to ceiling on the south side of the building .The heating effect would be immediate and not delayed,further the light would be better-natural day light.And it is cheaper.However heating can be done with solar power but you need a very large and very well insulated storage tank ."Griffner" house or their web page might be able to give you more detailed information,Dunkin had shown once a home in Austria which was heated by solar power.

fluffybottom
Unregistered User
Solar Panels


Has anyone any experience of havind solar panels installed on a south facing roof?. In terms of cost of installation, ease, return and so on?. Are there any indiginous companies who do this, or any grants available?.

TIA,

FFB

heinbloed
Unregistered User
indiginous solar companies


check www.sei.ie/home/index.asp
Under "renewable energy" you will find some companies.

gortfad
Registered User
Re: Solar Panels


There's a company in the north the produce vacuum tubes as solar collectors and their name in Thermomax.
There's a Peter Schneider (Peter, if your reading this the forgive my spelling)
You can also try Glas.ie and I'm sure that any of the above two should be able to give you any info. that you require.
Myself, I'm in the process of building a house at present and am going to install the Thermomax system.

FDH
Unregistered User
Solar Panels for Hot water System


Hi,

Does anyone have first-hand experience of Solar water heating systems. A few website say you can save between 50-70 % of your anual hot water bills ??

Is this really true ?

Anyone got these, are they trouble-free ? worth the money ? any hidden costs ?
Did it interfere with your oil burner system or do the 2 work well together ?

Can you give your general opinion on the system, hiden costs or maintenance, & any pointers / rough prices ?

Cheers,
FDH.

Tricia
Registered User
Re: Solar Panels for Hot water System


I got a Solartwin solar panel in July. So far, so good - installation quick and painless. Have been unable to guage the amount of hot water properly because I have builders and plasterers in at the moment so more hot water than normal is being used. But there seems to be a sufficiency for a shower, washing up and the washing machine - however I'm reckoning on having to have to turn the immersion on for an hour a day in winter.
I went for Solartwin on the back of advice my mum and dad gave me - lazy, I know, but they were looking into getting one (didn't, house on the market), and had done their research thoroughly. The main advantage was the ultra green technology, the system running on solar totally and needing no mains input, and that it removes any need to have a new hot water cylinder as other systems apparently do require.
Solartwin's website is www.solartwin.com/ and the guy who intalled it for me is Dave Gavin, his website is www.gavinsolar.ie/. I get the impression I was the first paying customer of solartwin in Ireland - business manner not great on the phone and I still haven't received an invoice but the technology has (so far) borne up so I'm happy. Happy enough to feel bad that I haven't got round to telling him to tell me to pay up...
The amount, incidently, comes to £2,600 stg but Dave Gavin apparently has different (better?) prices.
Hope that helps, i'm afraid it's a bit vague because I'm busy chasing up builders rather than having a proper nosy at the solar system - that I haven't had to inspect it because it's getting on with it's own thing is positive though.

Kev
Unregistered User
Planning permission


Did you need special planning permission for solar panels? Is it likely to be given in Dublin residential area?

FDH
Unregistered User
Thanks


Thanks Tricia,

Tricia that's exacly what I wanted a more personal experience of the thing.

Anyone else out there any experiece with these - are they all what they're workedup to be ?

Tricia - is there not a heat-pump/heat exchanger plugged into the mains with your system.

Here's a link to a few irish businesses for anyone out there:

energy.sourceguides.com/businesses

Thanks,
FDH

Tricia
Registered User
Heat pump for solar panel


Hi FDH,

The heat pump on the solartwin system is solar powered too, so it has no mains connection at all. The only irony is that I need a pump to get the hot water up into the new bathroom in the attic because the hotwater cylinder is on the first floor, but that's another issue altogether.

As for planning permission for the solar panel Kev, I don't know, because when I was submitting plans for the attic conversion I had the solar panels drawn on too. I don't know if this was necessary or not - I hope not, but would be interested to find out.

By the way, my solar panel is on a west-facing roof, which obviously isn't as good as a south-facing location, but that's all my inner-city Dublin terrace would allow...

Tricia
 
H

HB1

Guest
Re: >>Solar Panels?

6 m2 flat panel collector incl. everything (tank,fixings,regulator,pump,expansion barrel,etc.) -except installation and delivery- available for € 2555.-.Awarded with the " blue angel symbol " for high efficiency.
See http://www.aktionprosolar.de/angebot.htm
heinbloed
 

carrotcake

Frequent Poster
Messages
77
Re: Key Post: Solar Panels?

Hello, I am building a new house in which I will be the only occupant - I was thinking of putting in solar panels but wonder would it be too much of an expensive to go to if there will be only one person living in the house. My heating system will be aluminium (if budget allows) radiators and some underfloor heating in the kitchen and living area. Thanks very much.
 

bamboozle

Frequent Poster
Messages
537
Re: Key Post: Solar Panels?

Hi Carrotcake,

I due to have solar panel installed in the next few months. I'm going with a crowd called ecologics who i've found extremely good to deal with and quite cheap relative to other quotes i got.
Solar has a long pay back period, no denying this however from a 'green' perspective plus the fact you should have greatly reduced electricity bills during the summer months (when there's most sunshine) should weigh up the argument. Also, despite the state of the property market at the moment they should add value to a property. Finally oil & gas are not going to last forever!
I guess however most people will advise you that your best investment is to spend as much as you can afford on insulation.
 

carrotcake

Frequent Poster
Messages
77
Re: Key Post: Solar Panels?

Hello, I meant to say that I am building in County Galway area so if anyone could recommend a local Solar Panel supplier that you were happy with, that would be great. (I will check out Ecologics, thanks Bamboozle, but not sure if they are Galway based). Thanks again.
 

BurritoQueen

Frequent Poster
Messages
76
Re: Key Post: Solar Panels?

Do avoid 'flat-panels' and stick with vacumm tubes. You get more surface to capture light with tubes and they are more efficient for the money.
 

ninsaga

Frequent Poster
Messages
955
Re: Key Post: Solar Panels?

Do avoid 'flat-panels' and stick with vacumm tubes. You get more surface to capture light with tubes and they are more efficient for the money.
......... well yes that much is true..... but as put over time & time again, there are additional costs with having to replace tubes after a few years.
 

bamboozle

Frequent Poster
Messages
537
Re: Key Post: Solar Panels?

Hi Carrotcake, Ecologics are a supplier, so they'll deliver anywhere in the country & then you'll have to source a local installer, but they also have a list of installers through-out the country.
 

col

Frequent Poster
Messages
118
Re: Key Post: Solar Panels?

Buy only panels made and certified in the EU. When you take the cost of the panels, the installation, the special insulated tank (longer than standard-make sure you have room) ,and the fact that in 4/5 months of the year you will require dual heating (solar and oil/gas/electric) the payback at present is anything from 12 to 16 years.At that stage you will most likely need to change the panels again so it is not really cost efficient right now unless perhaps it is a new build and even then it is very debatable.
 
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Robbol

Guest
Has anyone heard of the solar panels called solar focus. They are made in austria and are a combination of flat panels and evacuated tubes. I was wondering are they suitable for the irish or english climate and if they aren't what are the best ones for our climate? There are so many out there its hard to know
 
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